Tag Archives: Mia

The Concert

Hiya folks!  Late on this month’s writing project and, I admit, I took advantage and wrote a little into May.  Here is another Mia excerpt.  If you haven’t read the first two, here you go:

https://oneclassydame.wordpress.com/2013/03/05/mia-descendant-of-monsters/

https://oneclassydame.wordpress.com/2013/04/10/more-mia/

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The Concert

 

I am sixteen.  I have not yet secured my position at the Academy yet, but I will this year.  I am in the smoky basement of a pub called The Underground.  We are new enough to town that few know what our family looks like.  It’s still easy to go out without getting harassed.  Electric lights of green, gold, and amber flash on and off, lining what appears to be a stage made of crates.  A lone microphone stands crooked in front.  The place is packed and noisy, young people, my peers, I guess, milling around drinking bright-colored alcohol out of beakers.  Some of the beverages are smoking.  My older brother does not know I am here.

I try to dress like young women my age, but I never seem to have all the elements together.  I’m always missing a key jewelry or the right boots or a debonair hair treatment.  Bustles are still in, but long underskirts are out, showing off stockings of all colors and patterns.  Corsets are visible and sexy after hours.  I am dressed in a black blouse with a high collar, black leggings and my lightweight sparring boots.  In an attempt to be fashionable, I stole one of Saga’s black silk cinches, which I will pay dearly for later, and secured it around my waist.  I have no skirts in my closet.

I do not say this to be ironic, but I wore all black before it was a statement.

The emcee, wearing a hat made of a variety of colored foxtails, approaches the mic carefully, leaning forward to speak into it without touching.  It must be one of the old microphones — my brother told me about them.  Apparently some of the more cantankerous models would electrocute people.

“Crazies and powdermen, continue to marinate!  Tonight’s eccentricities will begin in a few ticks so drink up, slobs!”

The crowd responds with a mix of dull acknowledgement and unnecessary cursing.  I remain in the dead space between the alcohol corral, piled high with kegs and stills, and the dance area.  People mill around me in colorful swaths, not noticing.

“Mia, my favorite niece!”

Aunt Elin never ceases to amaze me.  Although she is more than twice the age of most of the people in the room, she is dressed to kill.  Her hair, currently blonde with blue streaks, is piled high on top of her head. She wears a cerulean silk corset ratcheted tight with what looks like silver gears and teethy wheels.  She has no undershirt or chemise, showing off her bare muscular arms and shoulders.  She wears a silver bustle with dark patterned hose and boots with a heel sharp enough to poke someone’s eye out (and probably has).  There is nothing subtle about Aunt Elin.

“You here to see Artie?”  She leans over to shout in my ear, her breath thick and sweet with liquor.

“Yes, Aunt Elin.”

“Good girl!  Stupid of him to try and keep the family away.  ‘Slike he don’t know who he’s dealing with, right?”

“Yes, Aunt Elin.”

“I was gonna tell your father, but I wanted to see if this kid was even talented.  Fucking up on stage would be punishment ‘nuff.”

My brother, Art, is a musician and a singer, like my mother.  It has been hard for him to “book gigs” because many establishments still do not like the idea of having our family as patrons.  If they find out who Art is, they sometimes book him only under the condition that we stay away.  One relative of a genocidal maniac singing songs will sell tickets.  A passel of them cheering him on might start a riot.

So I admit that I am not supposed to be here.  But I am not one of the family members that Art should be concerned about.  Aunt Elin has found a young man enamoured by her statuesque beauty and is convincing him to buy her more whiskey.

Art is the first musician on.  He looks like my mother’s side of the family — tall and lithe, olive complexion, a long straight nose, brown eyes and hair.  I am the only one of my siblings with the traditional Fox Family green eyes.  Art carries on his guitar.  A girl with a bright red bob follows him on, holding a typewriter and with various bells around her neck.  She sits on a stool next to a large leather suitcase.  Finally a very handsome blonde man enters, a dark green bowler perched on his curls, an overly large purple bowtie secured about his throat.  I swear I can see his blue eyes from where I stand.  He’s wheeling on a beat-up bass.

Without introduction, Art and the blonde approach the microphone, temples touching, eyes closed as they softly sing in harmony with each other.  The room quiets.  It is hard to tell whose voice is whose, the audience is captivated by every breath the men take together.  The singers are joined by the percussive pecking of the typewriter.  Then the girl begins to kick the suitcase in rhythm.  The blonde takes a harmonica from his breast pocket and wails into it, his breath heavy into the speakers.  Then Artie begins to play.

I hope you do not think it hubris, but my brother is a genius guitar player.  I smile.  Mama would be very proud if she could hear him.

The blonde attacks the strings of his bass and the floorboards pulse beneath my feet.  Everywhere I look, I am meeting the eyes of someone my own age who is happy because of my brother’s music.  I feel young.  I hear Aunt Elin whooping and see a flash of blue as she is twirled by a young man in tails.

The chorus and bridge hit and no one is still, not even me.  Unknown hands take mine and I’m dancing, I’m dancing, and I’m being passed around between other girls and boys like I’m one of them, like I belong here.

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More Mia

Continued from last month’s project, here are two more snippets from Mia, Descendent of Monsters.  I should figure out a way to number these so it will be easier in the future to start from the beginning. . .

Also a BIG thanks to my Facebook weapons nerd friends!  I think once you read this, you’ll know which weapon I needed help finding ;)

Also also, yes, I realize that I refer to my husband as M Fox and the name of this character is Mia Fox.  I have a thing for foxes and apparently no imagination, okay?  Sue me. ;)

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An Old Dog

After decades of mercenary work, Colin Skydance earned a reputation as the best, and his other titles included unapologetic scoundrel and great lover of women.  Colin was fortunate enough to have been hired by the winning side of the Horde War, but those in the know were very much aware that it could have gone either way.

After retiring, Colin had settled in a remote wooded area in a self-made cabin.  One storming night, just as he was musing how the sound of rain was preferable to the usual silence, he heard a knock at the front door.  His daughter was visiting her brother up north, but even if she was in town, she would never knock.  Intrigued, Colin slid aside a small panel next to the door, undetectable from the outside, and appraised the visitor.

Drenched with rain, chest heaving.  Tired, but excellent posture — a warrior.   Shorter and younger than himself, long black hair tied back, robes.  Thick blade tied to his waist.  A Nishen warrior.  Colin threw open the door.

“Well come in, come in, don’t be shy,” he said cheerily. “Just because you’ve been sent to kill me doesn’t mean all civility should be thrown out the window.”

The visitor stood awkwardly in the door frame for a moment, taking in the legendary mercenary.  Colin had managed to keep a full head of curls, now the color of steel.  Thick black eyebrows brooded over his light blue eyes, striking even in the dark and the rain.  He still had the body of an agent, lean and tight.  Colin made a grand sweeping gesture toward the hearth and the visitor entered, taking care to wipe his flat shoes on the “Grandpa’s House” doormat.

It was a solitary man’s cabin.  There was one large room with a rug and some seating, a simple stove, open shelving.  Lamps still running on oil hung off sconces on the walls, the sticky smell mingling with the scent of burning wood. Above, a dark loft with a wooden ladder.

“You can sit if you like, though considering your damp state, I’d prefer you stand.  Oh, and not on the rug.”

“This is very hard for me to say,” said the visitor, his voice husky, on the brink of becoming hoarse.

“I can imagine.  Who sent you?”

“No one sent me.”

“Revenge, then?”  Colin meandered to his liquor cabinet and thoughtfully selected a bottle and a glass.  “I suppose I’ve killed someone important to you.  I am very sorry for that.  Whiskey?”

“No. You haven’t killed anyone I know or care about.  I’m here because of your daughter.”

Colin’s face remained impassive as he steadily poured himself another drink.  “Elin can take care of herself.  Go after her if you wish.”

“You misunderstand.  She saved my life.”

A smirk tugged at Colin’s cheek and he raised his glass, careful not to show his relief.  “That’s my girl.”

“She said I should pay my debt to you.”  The visitor unsheathed his sword, made of black metal with a divot down the center, painted red.  He held it flat in front of him and knelt before Colin.

The old mercenary slowly finished his second drink, his blood warming.  Upon his last swallow, he hurled the tumbler at the visitor’s head and kicked the offered sword into his own hand.  The visitor caught the glass and back flipped into a fighting stance.

Colin’s voice was smooth and low.  “You know who I am, what I’ve done, and what I can do to you, yet you knock on my front door with little to no proof of what you claim.  That’s pretty damn remarkable, if you ask me.”

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Mia, Descendant of Monsters

Third writing assignment!  No theme this time, just the beginning of an idea I’ve had for a long time. This month has been pretty busy with rehearsals and whatnot, so I didn’t write quite as much as I would have liked.  More for next month :)  Happy March!

(Also, I have spent WAY too long trying to format in this godforsaken software. . . so please excuse the inconsistency of the spaces between paragraphs.  I have no idea why they won’t stay where I tell them.)

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A Forward

My great grandmother was a conqueror.  History has recorded her as an exceptionally ruthless barbarian, cleansing her hands with the blood of her enemies.  Victims of her horde’s atrocities numbered in the thousands and that is only taking into account the dead.  Villages disappeared.  Bloodlines ceased.  She was thorough — I suppose that is the glib way to put it.  The Horde War, though decades ago, echoes painfully in the minds of my fellow countrymen.  My peers have relatives who still hide food under the floorboards and sleep with daggers under their pillows.

She was never brought to justice or trial, but instead murdered by her daughter, my grandmother.  My grandmother was murdered by her brother, my great uncle.  My aunt killed him, eventually.  Family tradition, you might say.

It is hard to gauge how strange your own family truly is until you meet someone from the outside.  My bloody lineage made this very difficult.  I never knew my great grandmother, or my grandmother for that matter, but our family has carried their legacy.  Changing names was tried (and refused by some), but it is pretty easy to track us down, given both my family’s predilection for over-speaking and the acceleration of technology.  No more does one have to wait for a stranger in a pub to hear news.

In perhaps a futile attempt to distinguish some relatives from others, I have taken it upon myself to write out my family’s history.

I apologize in advance for any liberties I may have taken.  I think they were not on purpose.

– Mia Fox, daughter of decent people, descendant of monsters

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I Join My Family

I am seven, I am the youngest. The lightbulb has not been invented yet.  I am sitting on the edge of the bed I share with my sister Saga.  She is three years older than me.  She has my writing folder, my special folder.  It has everything in the world to me — poetry, stories, drawings, lyrics.  She’s holding it in front of me and talking in that calm voice she gets when she’s about to do something horrible.  Whatever is on her mind at this moment will be nothing compared to what it would be if she read its contents. . .
“So Mia, what do you have to say to that?”
“What?”   I cannot focus because all I can see is the folder, waving back and forth, a page peeking out.
Saga rolls her eyes and exhales loudly.  “You do all my chores until my birthday, including the chickens-” I hate chickens – “and I will give you your folder back when I turn eleven.”
“Saga, I need it before then.”
“Well then I guess leaving it out for all to see wasn’t very smart, was it?”
“It was under the bed in my box, Saga, you took it-”

Saga opens the folder and holds a single page above her head.  Staring at me with dead brown eyes, she crumples it and drops it.

If I were anyone else but me, I would scream.  If I were anyone else but me, I would jump at her and claw her face off.  But I am me.  And so I am obedient.  Quiet.  Small.

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