Database of the Ageless Kings (Serial Story) Part 2

Part 1

Part 2: An Emu in SPACE!

“What you’ve done is launch us into hyperspace with no exit coordinates.” The Prince sat up from his glass coffin and shook his head. “Now who the hell are you and what are you doing on my ship?”

Sophia just stared at him. He was just as handsome as the stories had described. His black hair contrasted with his pale skin and he had a lopsided grin that made her feel weak. His words made sense to her, but he spoke much faster than the computer had when she’d been learning his language.

“I Sophia. You Prince. Me fix ship.”

“You speak galactic standard? But I landed on Sol-oh-three. There’s never been contact with that disturbing branch of humanity.” He looked scared and angry, and he awkwardly hopped out of the coffin almost falling on his face. “Who the hell are you and where are you taking me?”

There was an arm lengths distance between them but somehow Hagrid managed to stuff his girth between them. He squawked at the Prince, his head bobbing in every possible direction, like a helium balloon in a storm.

Jumping back, the Prince said a string of words that she didn’t understand but were obviously curses. “What is that thing?” His hands raised up in an awkward defensive posture.

“Hagrid. Down boy,” she told her Emu sternly. To her great surprise, he listened to her. Possibly for the first time. “This Hagrid, he’s an Emu.”

Apparently happy that she was safe, Hagrid, the picture of poise, bobbed towards the exit and slipped, falling to his side, and then jumping back up with a low, “Wark!”

“Is he your protector? I’ve never encountered an Emu but he looks a lot like a Manu.” When she didn’t say anything, he added, “Large flightless bird body guards. Hyper intelligent and ridiculously graceful.”

Laughing she replied, “Hyper? Yes. Intelligent; graceful? No.”

“Yeah.” He joined in with the laughter before adding, “Sorry for coming off so harshly. Before I went into cryosleep I was being chased by someone bent on killing me.”

Blushing despite herself, she said, “It’s okay. How long you sleep?”

Shrugging he walked over to a computer terminal and looked at the screen. She was about to interrupt him when he turned and said, “Twenty of your years.” He paused and asked, “Where are you taking me?”

“I accidentally pressed buttons. You tell me.” She was doing her best to match his wording and structure. The language was simple but had a few quirks that confused her. She was proud at the progress she was already making.

“How would I know? I just press where I want to go. This is only giving me coordinates and that means nothing to me.”

She shook her head; he sounded just like her father. He couldn’t figure out where he was without the GPS on his phone. “Coordinates are based off galaxy centre and the galaxy as seen from above. Using four digits representing; Quadrant, Depth, Horizontal axis, and Vertical axis.” She said it exactly the way the computer had pronounced it. Going to the navigation computer she added, “Combine with the map, we go to planet called Centuras Prime.”

“Oh thank goodness. We’re going home. Centuras Prime is the seat of the Galactic Queen. My sister.”

Nodding was the only thing Sophia could think of doing. The two looked at each other in an awkward silence that was thankfully interrupted by the ship’s alarm.

“Warning! Explosives detected on outer hull,” the voice of the computer said with the calm of someone who stopped caring a long time ago.

The Prince’s face went paler then normal and he slumped in the chair he was sitting in.

“Prince. Stay here. I go fix.” She knew this ship back and forth. She knew that in case of something getting stuck to the hull, the ship had small drones that could clear it off.

Part way to the engineering room, Sophia noticed that the Prince was following her. When she turned to him he shrugged and said, “I’d rather not be alone right now.”

“You the Prince,” She replied without turning.

“Please stop calling me that. My name is Phillip. Call me Phil.”

The ship was right and there was a bomb placed on the outside of the hull. It was just over the nacelles of the ship. If the bomb went off, it would create a reaction in the nacelles and then the engine that would not only blow up the ship, but cause an explosion that half the quadrant would see.

“Do you know anything about bombs?” Sophia asked.

“They explode?” Phil replied. This was the suave heartthrob from the stories she’d read so much about? He wasn’t living up to her expectations.

Picking up a drone that looked like it had a large shovel on the front of it she put it on a work table and started making changes. After twenty minutes of work, Phil asked, “What are you doing?”

“Changing drone.”

“Is it really a great time to be tinkering?”

Picking up the drone, she brought it to the airlock and prepared to open the outer doors. When she was comfortably sitting at the control panel she explained, “Drone is going to take bomb off ship.”

“But–”

She cut him off with a hand gesture. “Ship is inside Hyperspace bubble. Inside bubble ship moving slow. Outside bubble moving fast. If we can take bomb off ship and out of bubble, it blow up too far to hurt us.”

“What if it blow up right after you touch it with that thing?”

“We use drone like spatula. It have thrusters that push away from ship and scoop bomb. At worst it might redirect blast.”

“Isn’t that dangerous?” He asked his eyes wide in either fear or admiration. Sophia wasn’t sure. She gave him a look that she hoped was universal in saying, “Duh!” and continued to maneuver the drone.

Both of them held their breath as her hands flew over the controls. A small screen on the panel showed a video from the drone. Her plan worked perfectly and she lost contact with the drone.

They both waited, and after a few seconds sighed as the ship said, “Detonation at eight light years aft of the ship.”

“That was brilliant,” Phil said, his hands shaking.

She was debating giving him a victory hug when a loud boom echoed through the room. Running to the porthole, they looked out to see Hagrid flapping his useless wings inside the floppy arms of a humanoid shaped space suit.

“How did he get out there?” Sophia asked.

“How did he get into a spacesuit?” asked Phil.


If you’re enjoying this years serial story why not check out those from past years?

Database of the Ageless Kings (Serial Story) Part 1

Part 1: An Emu in the Cold

“For the last time, no! You’re not going away to any fancy school. You’re staying here!” Sophia’s father’s words rang in her ears as she chased Hagrid through the snow-covered fields.

“Emus are supposed to hate the cold!” she yelled at the idiot bird. The snow was up to her knees and was falling fast enough that the emu’s tracks were getting harder and harder to follow.

Of course, her father was right. Without her, who would fix the farm’s equipment and computers? They’d have to start paying for replacements and the new school, and that was ridiculous.

She was so concentrated on Hagrid’s tracks and her own thoughts that she had gotten completely lost. It wasn’t hard getting lost in a snowstorm when you couldn’t see your hands in front of your face. I wasn’t snowing that hard but the wind was strong, blowing the snow everywhere and biting through her coat.

“Fine! Freeze out here, you stupid bird!” she yelled and turned to head back the way she’d come. At least, she hoped it was the way she’d come; her tracks were gone. The world was a constantly shifting curtain of white in every direction.

She’d take two steps when she heard the tell tale grunting of Hagrid. She didn’t have many choices and decided to follow him. She caught up to him and he bobbed side to side, his head going in the opposite direction of his body. He gave another grunt and pecked at her playfully before turning around and running away again.

When she lost sight of him again he would grunt and come back to her, like he was leading her somewhere. “It better be home,” she mumbled.

It wasn’t home; it was a small cave entrance that barely fit a full-grown emu and a twelve year old girl. The cave itself wasn’t much bigger and offered so little protection from the wind that she tried to leave. Hagrid wouldn’t have any of it and pecked.

In trying to avoid another emu bruise, she fell back and hit the wall. She landed with a thump but it was followed by an odd swishing noise and a smell like old books.

Looking at the wall, Sophia found that it had opened into a doorway. There was no inner struggle; her curiosity pushed her through the door metaphorically, while Hagrid pushed her literally.

Dim lights turned on and the door closed. The smell of dust being heated came with blissfully warm air. “Where are we?” she asked Hagrid. He responded by bobbing his head excitedly and shaking his feathers.

The walls seemed to glow on their own and several colours flashed over another door. The flashes were accompanied by weird symbols. Sounds came from all around them and Hagrid ducked his head looking around.

The voice was calm and monotone, reminding Sophia of the pre-recorded voices on the subway in Toronto. She assumed the voice was giving her some sort of information and she walked towards the door. It slid into the wall with a hiss the way doors in Star Trek, or at the Timmins Square, did.

One door led to another and she walked for a good twenty minutes following the lights and unknown language. She tried a few times to enter doors that didn’t have the lights and they never opened for her. She saw plenty of corridors, but she knew she was at her destination when she walked into a room that had all sorts of knobs, buttons, and a computer screen.

The screen showed symbols, colours, and patterns she didn’t recognize. One of the screens had the solar system, another had dots that looked like her math homework, and another had shapes.

When the storm cleared, she brought Hagrid home, but every day she found her way back to the cave. Slowly over time, with the help of the computer, she learned its language. When she’d mastered the basics, she found a folder of stories. Slowly she learned to read them. They were all stories about a Prince. They described him as tall, strong, handsome, and a little awkward. Each story was different and often they contradicted themselves. Some had the Prince in intimate situations.

When she graduated high school, she was fluent in the language and had re-read the stories multiple times. She also used it to teach herself about the ship, because that’s what it was; a starship from a distant world.

As she attended the local college for automotive and computer repair, she learned about star drives and how to repair the ship. By the time she was twenty-two she was certain she’d repaired the ship to almost new. She’d had to invent or manufacture several parts, but she’d managed to fix it.

Despite her ten years of work and exploration, there was one room the ship had never let her see; the bridge. When she was confident she’d finished repairs, she forced the computer to open the door.

The bridge looked like the cockpit of a plane but was the size of a small meeting room. There were four workstations and lots of computer screens, including a view screen. She’d studied the plans before going in but there was something extra that hadn’t been in the plans.

A flat table was at the back of the room. The tablecloth on it had the Prince’s seal which made her heart beat a little faster. She went over to the table to get a better look and saw that it wasn’t a table at all, but some sort of coffin. Inside, the beautiful face of the prince looked like it was sleeping.

Putting a hand on the coffin, she wondered what had happened. A grunt and squawk from behind her made her jump, pushing on the coffin.

“Hagrid, what are you doing here?” she asked the now old, but still troublesome, emu.

Recovering from her shock, she turned back to the coffin and found the cover open and the prince sitting up. He stared at her with unseeing eyes and she did the only sensible thing and screamed. As she fell backwards onto one of the workstations, she heard the engines start.

“Oh no,” she said in the alien language she’d taught herself, “what have I done?”

Results: 2017 Serial Story – You Vote, I Write

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Hello My Imaginary Friends,

Last month I announced that this year’s serial story would be decided by your votes. I received 14 different voters and this year’s serial story will be:

A Science-Fiction Romance combined with a Comedy Fantasy. It will be told in the third person, will have 2 or 3 main characters who are human, must overcome some sort of Person VS Nature conflict, and there will be no time travel.

2017-serial-story

Database of the Ageless Kings

On a small emu farm in Northern-Ontario, Sophia, a twelve year old emu farmer, dreams of seeing the world. When she chases the escaped Hagrid (a particularly bad tempered emu) through a snowstorm, she gets lost and must seek shelter in a cave. However, this isn’t a normal cave but the crashed starship of the last Prince of the Galaxy.

She spends the next ten years visiting the ship, reading the royal fanfictions about the Prince, and slowly repairing the ship.

Things get interesting when, startled from finding the Prince in cryostasis, she accidentally launches the ship into hyperspace.

Look for Part 1: An Emu in the Cold, on January 17th.

Thank you for all your help,
Éric

Cait Gordon

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At Can-Con over the weekend of September 9-11, 2016, we had the opportunity to meet some incredible people. Cait (pronounced Cat) Gordon (FacebookTwitter, website) is one of those. She is a science fiction/fantasy author published by Renaissance Press (Twitter, website), and she seriously loves desserts! She’s a fantastic person to talk to, and has a great Irish accent that gets more pronounced when she’s excited. You can meet her at the Mega-Multi-Author Launch happening Oct 29, 2016.

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Melissa Yi

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At Can-Con over the weekend of September 9-11, 2016, we had to opportunity the meet some incredible people. Melissa Yi (Twitter, website) is one of those. She is an M.D. and author, and incredibly amazing to talk to! You can meet her at the Mega-Multi-Author Launch happening Oct 29, 2016.

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Derek Newman-Stille

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At Can-Con over the weekend of September 9-11, 2016, we had to opportunity to meet some incredible people. Derek Newman-Stille (Twitter) is one of those. On top of being a bad-ass secret monster, a PhD candidate, reviewer, editor, and artist, he runs the five-time Aurora Award winning website Speculating Canada!

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Can-Con (No Dragon Sightings)

Hello My Imaginary Friends,

Dragon is taking her time so I’m back at work this week (until I get the call, text, etc.) That means the super awesome story I have planned for you will have to wait for Thursday. It will hopefully not be postponed again.

This past weekend, despite being Dragon’s due date, we decided to get a table at Can-Con. It’s our favourite convention and is totally awesome.

Can-Con

One of the highlights of my weekend was selling coffee to authors I respect. It makes me feel all fan-boyish. The other was seeing old friends and meeting new ones. Can-Con people rock.

Not wanting to be too far away from Dragon, or the table, I only got to see one panel and give my first reading.

The panel I went to was about antagonists, it was incredibly interesting. The panelists were great (as usual).

Next year I plan on being on more panels. (I was asked but didn’t want to risk the chance of a Dragon hatching pulling me away).

THANK YOU!

To all the organizers, panelists, volunteers, vendors, and visitors to Can-Con; thank you so much for making it another great convention. I look forward to doing it again next year!

We’d both like to thank everyone who made sure Jen was ok and checked in on her throughout the weekend. You made her and I feel extremely loved and cared for!

My Reading

Taken by Madona Skaff
Taken by Madona Skaff

The reading was a lot of fun. Cait Gordon is a spectacular performer, Madona Skaff was fantastic, and Caroline Fréchette gave an impressive reading despite having bronchitis.

I learnt an important lesson about reading. Double check the passage before you read it. I just chose a random one and went for it, but didn’t account for how much extra set-up I needed. Seriously, I think I chose the part with the most characters in the entire book. I was sweaty, mumbling, and awkward, but people said I did okay. Next time I’ll prepare a little more.

Speaking of next time…

Mega-Multi-Author Launch!

This October 29th, Jen, I, and 6 other fantastic authors will be launching books and a game. It’ll be amazing. There are prizes, readings, food, and costumes!

There will probably be a baby Dragon there, in an adorable costume. (She’ll hatch by then right?)

This is the best place to get my book and some of my favourite reads from the past few years.

That’s it for now.

 

I’ll either be writing a new post on Thursday or you’ll get a story as I cuddle a Dragon.

Later Days!

Éric

 

Reading Bites

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Somehow I missed posting the pictures from Can-Con 2015! This is one of our absolute favourite conventions of the year, which is kinda obvious if you know that our due date coincides with their convention THIS year. (Sept 9-11) Seriously, go check them out and then buy a ticket. The writing community of Ottawa is incredible.

A red shirt, author Éric Desmarais (Follow him on Facebook, his blog, sign up for his newsletter through his website, and buy his book here) is about to get bitten by a vampire, author S. M. Carrière (Follow her on Facebook, her blog, sign up for her newsletter through her website, and buy her books here) and is pleading for the Doctor to help!

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Jess Goldie – Part 2 of 2

I’m on vacation but enjoy this story!

Read Part 1


It was a terrifying place. I almost turned back but I saw movement and had to investigate. I followed the movement for a little, thinking I was hunting it. It lead me to a small clearing before two more of it came out of the forest.

It was fascinating; a grizzly sized capybara crossed with a teddy bear. As I looked at them in adoration they started to sing the sweetest song, layering harmonies. Before I knew what was happening, the one I’d followed had closed its jaws on my shoulder. The pain was excruciating and cut through their siren’s song. It ripped off a part of my shoulder and then salivated on it. Its saliva dripped onto my wound and I felt myself healing. I also learnt everything I needed about it.

Its natural predator was a form of large black hound, whose skin cracked and extruded some form of burning liquid. I forced myself to change shape and mimic the magma hound. When I’d grown to five times my size, I howled the howl the haunted the Adlat’s dreams.

The three creatures ran away and I shrank back to my dog form. I felt strange like I was missing something. I was scared and alone; all I wanted was the warmth of home.

I ran back to the gopher hole I’d made leaving the city. I looked at the hole and tried to bring up the memory of a gopher. I couldn’t. The knowledge I had about gophers was gone. That’s when I discovered my memories were spread across my being and losing part of me meant losing memories. I put myself to work and dug out the hole enough that I could get back into civilization.

I was part way through digging the hole when a howl, similar to the one I’d made earlier, echoed behind me. I melted back to my original shape and hurried through the rest of the hole.

I don’t like being goo, it’s like being naked, both physically and psychically. As goo I can feel all the emotions around me, plant, animal, human, and more. I also taste and feel every part of the earth.

Whatever made that noise was big and probably couldn’t get through the gopher hole I’d made. I changed into a crow and flew straight back to Jessie’s home.

Inside I walked gently into the kitchen. Even having changed several times, my heart beat swiftly.

“Goldie?” Jessie asked behind me. I jumped and made a strange snuffling noise and he giggled. “I can’t sleep. I had nightmares.” He shivered and I got a vague impression of a clown and the terror that accompanied it.

He walked over to me and hugged me, his little face buried in my fur. All the fear, mine and his, drained from me and was replaced by his love.

He took a glass of water and walked over to the couch near the antique television. “Do you want to watch something, Goldie?” I gave a soft woof of disapproval but he took it as acceptance and put in his favourite old movies (one his father didn’t let him watch alone). It was in colour and had a large insect like alien that tried to kill the crew.

I lay next to him and he put his hand in my fur, he was asleep before the first crewmember died. I don’t sleep but I was comfortable and not paying complete attention. I should have been sharper. I should have been more careful.

I lazily turned towards the kitchen and caught sight of two glowing violet eyes. Before I knew it,, the Magma hound had pounced towards us. I moved as fast as I could but I was too slow. It bit into Jessie’s leg, pulled him, and started to shake him.

The movie behind me influenced my shape and I changed into the alien. I’d never been so big before and I could feel it draining my energy. My double set of jaws snapped at the Hound. Surprised, it dropped Jessie and tried lunging for my neck.

I contorted my new body and unhinged my powerful jaws. It caught me in the throat but I bit down on its back, snapping its spine. The hound fell to the ground with a thump.

The terror in Jessie’s eyes when he looked at me haunts me still. I changed back to my Goldie shape and tried to move closer to him. He screamed and despite his bloodied and broken leg he scrambled backwards away from me.

Pain, fear, and betrayal emanated from him as he lost consciousness. I knew from his feelings that he’d never trust me again and that hurt more than the wounds that the Adlat or the magma hound had given me.

There was a lot of blood and I was worried that Jessie’s leg was still bleeding. Remembering the Adlat I transformed into one and started to salivate on his leg. Instantly, the bite marks started closing and he started looking healthier.

I felt fear emanating from the staircase at the same time I heard the sirens. Jessie’s parents had seen me change and then salivate all over their child. They feared too and now Elmsley was coming. The private police force of the NAF would show me no mercy.

I had no other choice but to leave.

I spent a long time living as various city animals. I watched Jessie grow up. His leg was never the same after that night but he eventually lost the haunted look I’d caused with my carelessness.

I was wallowing in guilt as a pigeon when I saw a poster on a mailbox with the picture of a young girl and the caption, “Missing.” I remembered the detective movies and decided it was time I started living like a human.

The wonderful thing about humans is clothing. It hides any form of sex organs and makes it much easier to mimic them. I chose a shape that was androgynous to let my clients expectations decide what I looked like. I took on the name Jess Goldie and I’m now a Private Detective.

Jess Goldie – Part 1 of 2

I’m on vacation but enjoy this story!


I was a pile of goo on the sidewalk, and it wasn’t because of a cute boy or girl. I was literally a pile of goo. The first thing I remember was oozing – yeah that’s the sexy description – towards a green lawn. Everything is a little fuzzy but I think I was running away from something.

I oozed under a white picket fence and felt the need to change my shape. When I’m around people I can sense what they’re expecting me to look like. My first shape was a golden retriever puppy. Exactly what Jessie Heaney wanted for this fifth birthday. I’m extremely grateful I didn’t show up the next year when he was into dinosaurs.

The only problem with the need to transform is the lack of information. Jessie knew what a puppy looked like and had a general idea what they should act like but no specifics. I did what I was expected to do and that was jump around and yip happily.

The early morning sun was warm on my new coat but the dew on the grass was refreshing. I didn’t mind running around. It was better than oozing.

When his parents saw him hugging me, I felt their sadness at the idea of hurting him. They said he could keep me if I was a stray and not someone’s pet. Jessie insisted that we go ask all the neighbours.

As they walked further out of their neighbourhood, Jessie asked, “What if someone owns the puppy?”

“If someone owns the puppy we’ll go to the pound and get you another puppy,” Jessie’s mother said.

He promptly burst into tears. Between gasps of breath he said, “But I don’t want another puppy! I want Goldie.” He’d given me a name. Names are odd, they’re abstract representations of the concept of self but it has a sort of power.

“I think he’s named the mutt,” Jessie’s father chuckled as he spoke.

His laughter was drowned out by the low growl from a black lab. It towered over me – everything towered over me – five or six times my size. My first instinct was to make myself small and curl into a ball.

When I did I heard a woman’s voice shout, “Calm down Ebony!” I risked a look up at the other dog and it moved slowly towards me sniffing me. I must have smelled wrong. A little boys mind doesn’t contain dog smells.

Ebony must have assumed I had rolled in something strange because she came up to me and licked my head. A shock ran through my entire being. Everything Ebony knew about being a dog and physically being Ebony was contained in her saliva.

It might be considered a gross way of getting information but it works. Any bodily fluid I come in contact with gives me all the physical information I need to imitate that being or species. It’s limited by what the other being knows genetically. In this case Ebony was a female black lab and that’s what I got as information.

It gave me the information to create animal genitals and basic behaviour, but the vet and dog experts would often mention that my behaviour and temperament was that of a lab not a golden retriever.

My life with Jessie and his Parents was simple and beautiful. I played, ate, and was loved. My days were spent lazing in the back yard, my evenings playing with Jessie and my nights exploring the city.

I learned a lot about the world from listening to Jessie’s homework sessions.

“It’s interesting,” Jessie’s father said, “I’d swear she knows what we’re saying.”

“Oh don’t be silly,” Jessie’s mother replied before asking her son another question, “Where do you live?”

“1227 Shatner Ave. Ottawa, Algonquin. Capital of the North American Federation.”

“Good job, and when was the NAF founded?”

“July 17th, two-thousand and thirty three.”

“Good Job, Champ!” Jessie’s father would say the same every time Jessie gave a right answer.

One thing I liked doing with Jessie was watch his father’s old movies. They were all on clunky round disks instead of data chips and they had to be watched on an old flat imaged television in the basement.

My favorites were mysteries from the late twentieth century. Not knowing what was happening was my default state but these movies gave clues and the men, they were always men, were confident and brash. By the end the bad guy was caught through hard work and intelligence.

Jessie however liked the movies that had monsters in them. His father wouldn’t let him watch any of those that were in colour without a parent watching with him.

After watching a movie where a rabbit had been made large with lion DNA Jessie wasn’t able to sleep. I had found the rabbits laughable. I’d licked one once and there was nothing violent or dangerous about them.

After waking up crying, Jessie asked his father, “Daddy, are there any real monsters?”

“I wish I could say no. There are no giant rabbit monsters and there are no monsters in Ottawa.” His father gave a big sigh and continued, “However, there are monsters out there. Both creatures and people with unholy powers. That’s why we have Elmsley.”

“Aren’t they police?”

“Yes but they also protect us from monsters. And you have Goldie to protect you.”

I gave a soft woof of agreement and he gave me a furrowed look.

The conversation intrigued me and my nighttime explorations went from learning all I could about the wildlife around the house to exploring further and further out. I learnt a lot more about humans and dogs than any other animals.

Human’s leave their bodily fluids everywhere. I learnt from cigarette butts, half chewed gum, pieces of garbage, random spit on the ground, and humans that marked their territory. The older the sample the less I get from it but I learnt a lot of the cruelty of humans in those nights.

The hardest part of walking around at night is avoiding people’s expectations. In daylight they feel safe and expect other people or dogs. It’s a vague tugging on me making me want to mold to their expectations. At night, people expect their nightmares and fears. It’s a sharp and almost painful feeling. If I give in to it I’m tugged from one nightmare to the other. If I fight it, it’s like trying to keep water in a shape. It means I move slowly and must concentrate on my shape.

Eventually I reached the border between city and wilderness; it was marked by an electric fence. The fence was easily five metres high and made of hard thick metal. Underground it only reached a metre and was nothing for a gopher. (They were fun to chase even if I didn’t need to learn about them).

The wilderness around Ottawa is filled with wild, nearly random, tropical plants; nothing like the well curated plants of the city. The mists of the jungle clung to the plants in a way that I’d only seen in the movies with Dracula, Swamp Thing, or Frankenstein.

To Be Concluded