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Doctor Oger

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About Doctor Oger

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    Ruhr City, Germany
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    Too many too mildly, and evidently none profitable enough.

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  1. That is interesting. I don't know anything about Polynesia. And thank you, AC.
  2. Two Lizards In The Sun (14/03/18) I am not quite done baking And likely I will never be done. But at some point during waking this cake will sit out in the sun. It will sit there, ripe for the taking, You will smell it, feel its crust – but until then I will settle for faking, and I know you will see why I must. It will not be a tragic unmaking, it will not cause a parting in shame. You'll be hurt and your trust will be shaking, but you will still love me the same. The two lizards, there is no mistaking, will look at the setting sun together, steadfast, never breaking, together until night has won.
  3. Is anyone here familiar with Microsoft Edge? Since its last update it's harrassing me with highlighted spell checking and autocorrection that seemingly can't be turned off through the browser. Disabling them in "Devices" and "Typing" doesn't affect the browser for some reason, no matter how often I Restart Things. (See what happens to "Restart Things" in this %&/()//(&)&$($#+ä#+) --- yeah, I'm annoyed.

    If ANYONE can help, PLEASE!!! tell me how!!!

    1. Daddydavek


      I don't use it.  Did you try using their web site?



    2. Doctor Oger

      Doctor Oger

      Thanks, and yes. The official help site was the least helpful of everything I found. I've switched browsers now.

      But thank you for the reply. 

  4. "Blue like sky and sea" and "I will come after you". I learned a bit of Norwegian a few years ago. So these names were a bit too on the nose to not be funny. Addon: Yes, I read the other chapters, too.
  5. In combination with Aditus' story this was a really entertaining read. Imp's and Angel's names are maybe a little more hilarious to me than they should be, if I knew not to spend half the night reading instead of sleeping. So I blame you and Aditus for keeping me up on a work night. Thank you.
  6. The duke's carriage rumbled along on the dry dirt road, flanked on both sides and bracketed both in front and back by mounted guards decked out in the duchy's colours, green and black. All six of them wore their chainmail under the livery, gleaming steel band gloves and half helmets, and their weapons on proud display on their backs and saddles. When he looked out of the window on his right, Till could see a short spear, a sheath of sturdy bolts and a crossbow he was certain he would not be able to cock if he tried. The serious bearded man carrying those was about twice his size and weight – or near enough as made no difference, Till estimated. Beyond the guard he saw a wide stubble field covered in dry wheatstraw that reflected the midday sun. He found it looked rather pretty like that, in an unnatural way. The early autumn sunlight also warmed up the carriage a little, for which he was grateful. He had not expected to run his errand by sitting in a carriage rather than riding himself. The exercise would have kept him warm – and occupied. It was exceedingly boring to ride in a carriage by yourself, Till realised, even though he had brought a book to read (he always did). If he wanted to do that, he needed to keep the curtains and shutters open to get enough light, and at the same time this let the sharp wind through. Till sighed and looked out of the left window for a change of scenery. The road ran along the edge of a forest, so there were trees and bushes to look at there. The guard he saw riding there, also staring straight ahead like a grim statue, was a woman who would tower over him if they stood side by side, and had shoulders that made him think of chainmail-covered bookcases, even without the shield nodding on her back. The bit of thick chain fastened to a wooden handle that he could see poking up behind the horse's neck belonged to a nasty spiked flail, or morningstar – Till was never sure what different sorts of weapons were called. He had seen that thing at the beginning of their journey, when the guard had fastened it to her saddle for the ride. The dark iron head of it was as long and thick as his forearm and had several pointed beams growing out of it that were at least as long as his fingers. Anyone hit by that thing would certainly be marked for life – provided they survived the encounter. Till sighed again and stuck his head out of the window facing the shimmering wheat field. He let his arms dangle down and drummed his ink-stainded fingers against the painted wood. "How far to the castle?" he asked the bearded guard. The man squinted into the distance, tilted his head and said: "About two miles less than when you last asked." He smirked to himself. "Still about sixty miles." Till groaned and the guard laughed. "You didn't think that the Duke's favour would be this boring, did you?" Till shook his head. "And to think the other apprentices envy me this..." The guard laughed again. "You better hope there is no adventure up ahead on this ride, or both our masters will have our hides," he said. "Only if the adventure damages or loses his precious books," Till pointed out, and the guard nodded. The scrawny boy named Till Mirrol (who insisted he was proud twenty years old) was not actually his charge. The books were. Duke Sarland had purchased stacks of expensive leather- and wood-bound books with inlaid gemstones, gold-rimmed pages, coloured illustrations and all sorts... and the delivery could only be made by one of the artisans themselves and had to be protected by a capable escort, of course. It was a good assignment, prestigious and unlikely to go wrong. During harvest even highwaymen usually found better things to do than trying to rob their ruling lord. Famous last thoughts. When Till woke up with a throbbing head he was gagged with his own scarf, his ankles and wrists were bound tightly together with rope and he was buried under piles of heavy fur in the narrow footspace of the carriage. Out of reflex he jerked against his bindings and tried to turn onto his side to try and get up. His sharp intake of breath was something he regretted instantly, because it made him breathe in some fuzz from his scarf that was not yet drenched in his spit and he started coughing. Someone very close by laughed softly and removed the two wolfpelts. "Look who's decided to join us," said a deep, smooth voice with far too much humour in its tone. "I almost thought the blow had killed you. We don't usually do this to children, so I'm afraid my friend isn't used to adapting his strength when knocking people out." Children?! Till glared up at the man. He was sure he was just mocking him, but his confusion and this confounded headache did not exactly help him wake up with a cool head. He had dozed off on the ride, he recalled, and then woken up to shouting, harried clomping of hooves and the horrifying noises of metal clanging and scraping against metal. He had never imagined it would be so loud to be in a scrap, or feel so chaotic. Not that he had been in it, specifically. He had been in the carriage with the books, but still. Only seconds after waking up one of the doors was yanked open and a leather-clad man with a dark cloth wrapped around his head and a long dagger in his hand climbed in, grabbed a fistful of his jacket and pommeled him over the head. Now another man was sitting there on the bench, leaning over him with a curious smirk on his smug face and grabbing his jacket like that other man had, to pull him upright. "Now, I'm sure you can hear me, so listen closely," he said. Till noted that they were moving at the same pace as before, and by the sound of it they were accompanied by riders, but the curtains were drawn so he could not see what they looked like. It was still light, so he could not have been unconscious for long, he guessed. "Look at me," said the man sharply, and Till's gaze whipped back to him. The smug smile returned. "I'm going to remove the scarf, and I'll trust you not to scream or try to bite me. You look like a smart lad. You know it wouldn't help you. Savvy?" Till nodded and the man reached around to the back of his neck and yanked the knot free. Part of his headache subsided immediately. He spat out the wad of damp cloth and flexed his jaw testily. He tried to wipe his mouth dry on his shoulders but found that that did not do his head much good. "You don't look much like a Sarland to me, and you're certainly not the Duke himself, yet here you are, protected by his soldiers, riding in his carriage, bold as brass, surrounded with his riches," the man said as he chucked Till's scarf somewhere onto the bench behind him. He picked up a richly decorated book that was lying next to him with two others, out in the open on top of the canvas sheets that had been wrapped around them. It had dark red leather binding encased with a delicately curving silver frame that was inlaid with small gemstones. The Paric Treatise. Till's eyes were glued to it as the man turned it in his robber hands and ran his fingers along the silver edges. It looked as though he was about to open it and flip through its pages, so Till quickly said: "I'm supposed to deliver those. The carriage is for them, not me." The man stopped fingering the book, thankfully. He looked up, brows raised, and studied Till's face curiously. "For the books?" He sounded both amused and skeptical. Till nodded. The man grinned. "This I need to hear. Duke Sarland sends his own carriage and personal guard to fetch books, and a little page to keep them company?" Till's wideeyed stare turned into a look of disdain. A little page, really? "I work for a bookbinder in Stolberg. Duke Sarland made an uncommonly big purchase for his library and I'm tasked with taking it to him. I suppose he thought it necessary for its safe delivery to have it guarded by his rank and soldiers." "My, you're free with your information, aren't you?" said the man. Till shrugged. "And you don't seem nervous at all. I'd have thought you'd pretend to be a family member so we keep you alive and demand ransom." Till shrugged again. The rope around his wrists at his back began to really bother him now. He drew his legs closer and knelt on his heels to stop leaning against the wooden bench. "No one would fall for that. These books are a hundred times more valuable than I am, half a king's ransom, so getting out of this matters nothing without them." He worked his hands under his butt and with some wincing and serious strain on his hands managed to slide them over his thighs to the hollows of his knees. His captor watched this with wondering amusement. "I'm responsible for their safe delivery. Either you kill me or... I'm done for either way." At last, he got both his feet through his arms and shook out his shoulders a bit before leaning back against the bench. The man looked impressed and amused. "The Duke loves his books, doesn't he," he said, and Till shrugged and nodded nonchalantly. The Duke evidently did. After all, he had paid a serious fortune for these ten, and waited for over a year to have them made. "So you think he understands Paric, or Draconic?" said the man, lifting the book he was holding to indicate it and set it back down on the canvas with the others, carefully. This was curious. "You're not a normal robber, are you?" said Till and studied the man more closely. He certainly looked rough to him, but he guessed that he was probably not the best judge of that, since he had never seen a bandit before. The only 'rough' things about this man were his clothes, the dark stubble around his jaw and the little scar on his left eyebrow that interrupted the line of hair there. He supposed that with different clothes and a shave he could blend into any sort of society with ease. His hair seemed alright. It was long and dark and pulled into a plain ponytail, his eyes were not discoloured or bloodshot and his teeth seemed to be all there and in good condition. Rather handsome, too, actually, with that little smile and curious, studying gaze that reminded him of a cat. Or maybe a bird. Something that stared at you and seemed to see more than it ever let on. "Well, I haven't taken the books and run, have I? That's what a normal robber would do, don't you reckon?" the man said in his dark, smooth voice. Till shrugged. "I'd reckon," he muttered. "So what does the Duke want with these books that are more expensive than human life?" "Maybe he reads them," said Till impatiently, "Maybe he just wants to show off. What's it to you?" The man chuckled. He seemed so laid back it was beginning to irritate Till. Or maybe he was just getting nervous after all. "What does he want with these rare books on ancient, foreign magic?" said the man in a softer, more insistent tone, leaning forward on his knees. "How do you know they are that? How do you know they're in Draconic and Paric?" "I'm not 'a normal robber.'" "Obviously. Will you kill me now?" "Do you have a death wish?" The man still looked amused. "You killed all the guards, didn't you?" "They fought back," said the man with a nonchalant shrug. "But you -" He pointed at Till and stopped speaking, clamped his lips shut as if thinking. "… I what?" said Till, dubiously eyeing the finger and the man's face. He hoped that whatever he had planned for him did not rest on any sort of delusion he might have regarding his station or value to the Sarland family. He would be rather worthless in that area. He did not come from a wealthy family and his master would rather flay him for losing these books than try and buy him back. "You have really pretty eyes," said the man, wagging his finger and then leaning back with a satisfied smile. Till frowned. "What." "You do," said the man with a helpless shrug. "I'm serious, what are you going to do with me?" said Till irritably. He rubbed his bound wrists against his propped up knees. The rope was itchy. "I'm serious, too. Your eyes are seriously pretty, all large and grey with these rusty specks in them -" Till let out a loud, impatient breath and the man laughed. "I don't know what to do with you yet, but I don't think we'll kill you. That would be a sorry waste of pretty eyes that can glare daggers and instill awe in people's hearts, and of considerable, rare skill." "Rare skill?" Till was confused. The entire explanation was confusing. So he just repeated the last two words for want of anything else to say. The man picked up the silver lined book again and rested it on his thigh to fondle it like he had before. Till stared at it. "You obviously had a hand in making these. If you were nothing more than a delivery boy you wouldn't be needed on this journey, and you wouldn't know what's in them." He opened the book and carefully turned the pages filled with neat, curly script in black ink and delicate drawings on every other page. "Please don't do that," said Till softly between gritted teeth. The man looked up and studied him. "Do what? Oh, the book?" He stroked over the opened page and watched Till's pained frown. "I see. Here you go," he said and closed it carefully, then held it out to Till. It was smaller than most of the ten books in here and did not require a stand to rest on, or two strong arms to hold. Had it not been covered in silver and orange gemstones it would pass for a traveling diary. Till lifted his hands and let the man put it on his knees. "It is one of the more insightful works on tribal magic," said the man in a mild, appreciative tone. Till nodded. They rode in silence for a while. Long enough for Till to notice how odd it was that it was still light outside. It must be the next day at least, he mused, which explained his captor's comment about 'deciding to join them', if he had been out of it for the entire night. The man had picked up another book and leafed through that now. "I notice you don't take issue with me touching this one," he eventually said. Till looked up at him. In truth, he had hardly noticed what the other man was doing through the fog of his worries and headache. But he really did not mind it. The Paric Treatise was safely in his hands, something solid to hold. He slid his hands down to reveal it and looked down at it. "I spent more than a year on this. I selected the paper and cut it, copied every letter in it and the illustrations... bought the stones... drafted the binding... mixed the ink and boiled the glue, bound it, cut the leather... This costs more than I would on any slave market," he said softly. "I wouldn't count on that," said the man smugly, and Till looked up at him sharply. The man just chuckled again. "So you don't want me to touch it with my dirty robbing hands, I understand." Till shrugged. The man's hands were not particularly dirty and he was handling the books with care and respect, it seemed. And he seemed to know a thing or two about their contents. "I just don't know what you're going to do with them," he muttered. "We're taking them to the Duke," said the man. "He paid for them, didn't he? All that gold squeezed out of his starving subjects can't go to waste, can it? And I would never forgive myself for getting you into trouble," he added unnecessarily. "I'll just have to know your name." Till regarded him suspiciously. This unusual bandit who was not a bandit. "You're trying to get close to him," he guessed. "To assassinate him?" "Why, I never-!" The man feigned shock and gasped, then instantly calmed down and smiled at Till. "You really are clever. Your eyes are not the only attractive quality on you." Till rolled said eyes and looked at the red curtain swinging in front of a window. "And you're calm as a stone, still. Apparently also nameless," said the man as he closed the book and put it back onto the canvas sheet at his side. Till kept holding on to his own, the Treatise. He really was not calm anymore, but the book helped in keeping his nerves in check. "Till Mirrol," he muttered. "Come again?" "Till Mirrol," he said again and cleared his throat. "Interesting. I knew a Till a few decades ago," said the man. "He spent his life traveling and being a nuisance. Apparently he tricked the good citizens of one unlucky town into building a town hall with no roof. Well, he did not trick them, exactly. They were just that dumb. But they blamed him for getting wet indoors in the first rainfall." Till laughed and stared at him in wonder. "You're joking." The man shrugged and shook his head. "It's the honest truth, pretty Till Mirrol." "You knew him?" Till found that hard to believe, but his curiosity was piqued. He knew that particular story well, along with many others. He had heard them from his mother. Her father had been named Till and she claimed that he had done all those things during his years on the road, tricking farmers into talking to donkeys, making a baker famous with little owl-shaped breads and cheating merchants for cheating their customers. The man nodded and smiled. "We were good friends, actually. He was a really funny guy. He had pretty eyes, too," he added with a grin. "Get off it, you didn't know him," said Till, but he was grinning. "Sure did!" "Never. How old were you, ten? He died fifteen years ago." At this, the stranger suddenly turned serious and leaned forward, studying Till's face more closely. "How would you know?" Till leaned back. "That was my grandfather. Till Owlglass? He was ancient when he died and hadn't been on the road for years. You're far too young to have known him." The man's shoulders sagged a little. He looked sad as he slowly leaned back again. Not the reaction Till had expected. And he certainly had not expected to feel sorry for his captor. "What am I doing here?" Till asked over his fists that he was resting his chin on as he was lying on a comfortable blanket under the tarp of his captor's tent. There was a little lamp hanging on a hook in the middle of the tent that let him read the half-rotten book that lay before him on the blanket. His captor had just ducked into the tent and was taking his warm cloak off. He blinked at Till, at the old brown book, and then at Till again. "It looks like reading," he said innocently and dropped the cloak on top of a worn leather bag. When he turned he banged his head against the little lantern, making it creak on the hook and cast its ghostly blue light in a shivery dance around the tent. The flame in it fed on nothing that Till was aware of, and just kept burning, spreading light and warmth through the tent for hours on end after Faren had cast his spell on the lamp. Faren was his captor's name. Or he just wanted Till to call him that. Everyone else called him 'the shepherd'. "You know what I mean. Why do you keep me around?" said Till and sat up. "Just because you were friends with my grandfather?" Faren's eyebrows rose. He was good at looking unsuspecting. "Why, it's because your ey-" "Don't say my eyes are pretty!" said Till sharply. "I've followed you and your bandits around for a week now -" It had been nine days, to be exact – "sleeping in your tent, and you're not telling me what I'm here for, not letting me work with the others, I can't even go and gather firewood! What's the point of me being here? I told you I'm not worth anything. There's no ransom for me." He threw his arms out and quickly ran out of gestures to underscore his words with, so he picked up the ancient little book he had been reading and brandished that. He was not used to voicing complaints to kidnappers. This little book had been his only thing to spend his time with while camping in these cold, damp woods, apart from talking to people, particularly Faren himself. Faren had given it to him for whatever reason and it was a very slow read. It was in such bad condition that the writing was difficult to decipher, and the Paric it was written in was so archaic that it was hard to understand the meaning. He was reading it for the third time now and was now convinced that it had some magical property that changed the text without changing its semantic contents somehow. Faren had probably given it to him to keep him occupied. "You're not worth anything?" said Faren with a dark frown. He sat down in front of Till, closely because the tent was not exactly very spacious, and stared at him. It was unsettling. Till blinked against the fizzy, feverish warmth that rose up in him under this calm stare. It was not really the most important thing to take note of in this very moment, but he did notice just now that Faren had been keeping his face stubble-free and his fingerlong goat-beard in neat shape during the past two or three days. "No," he said very softly and touched Till's cheek with a few fingertips. "You're not worth just anything. No one is rich enough to ransom you." What a strange thing to say. And what a strange sensation. Something tilted in him, as if his skin were loose and everything under it had started squirming, tickling the inside of it. Till pressed his lips together and swallowed. "Faren," he started, trying a stern and commanding tone but falling short of that by only a mile or so. He cleared his throat so the rest of his sentence would not croak quite as much, and opened his mouth to ask again, when Faren's face was suddenly much, much closer and his "What's the point of keeping me here?" was effectively stoppered by the man's lips. His capt- Faren – had left the tent after that kiss, leaving his cloak behind and not doing or taking whatever he had come in for. He had not said another word before knocking the flap aside and practically lunging out. Till tried to tell himself that he must have remembered something important that required his immediate attention, but he was not stupid enough to be that oblivious. However, he reserved himself some doubt as to Faren's goals and motivations concerning him. He dearly hoped that this robber chief had not brought him as some sort of servant to his most personal needs. It had not looked like it so far and Till was far from adequate for such a role. Not only had he spent all his life trying to look as bland as possible, he was also rather unsociable, and dry, factual and to the point in his speech – so much so that his master would not normally let him deal with customers. All in all, Till knew he was rather unappealing and liked it that way. Women would contrive to have you marry them, to start a family and support them, men would give you diseases from some whorehouse they'd visited before, and all of them would have some ulterior motive and demand all his time if he let them. Not that he had any first-hand experience with this. He had seen enough while living with the other apprentices and journeymen. There was nothing attractive about him. Even if there were... Till tucked the book under a fold in the blanket and went outside. The fire was burning low but there were still people sitting around it. The girl named Verena was practicing playing the lute. There was a very old woman in the camp by the same name. Till had assumed she was the girl's grandmother – or great-grandmother? – but seeing how she was revered by everyone, he concluded that it did not matter. She was everyone's grandmother here. Two men, Cole with the bushy beard and young Vitya with the wispy one, were sitting almost opposite her and cleaning weapons by the blue light of two more magical lanterns. Faren was nowhere to be seen. Vitya and Verena both looked up at him and nodded curtly. Verena smiled and patted the log she sat on. With nothing else to do and the night air already creeping under his tunic, Till accepted the invitation and joined her by the dying fire. He looked at her uncertainly as he sat down and quickly directed his gaze at the ash-coated logs in front of him, so that he missed her reassuring smile. She kept plucking the strings and hummed with them. Once in a while she threw in a few melodic words that sounded like nonsense at first, until Till finally recognised them as Paric. It had not been a spoken language for centuries. It was only used for magic and vain attempts at making something sound more mysterious than it really was. He was leaning forward on his knees and basking his face in the burning glow as he listened. Verena had a good singing voice. As high-pitched as it was, it managed to weave itself into the rougher sound of the instrument like a single golden thread through a colourful tapestry. Till had a good grasp on written Paric, the sort that academics used, but he only understood about half of what she was singing. When her song had ended and she was only slowly strumming and plucking as if that were something she just normally did all day long – she asked over the soft music: "What did you do to the shepherd?" Till looked over his shoulder at her to try and read her face. She simply looked friendly. Smiling and obviously expecting an answer. What had he done to the shepherd? "Nothing." He looked forward again and pulled his ponytail back so it would stop getting in his mouth when he looked at her. "Really? Did you say something?" she prodded. "I haven't done anything to him," said Till irritably, "he's abducted me and is keeping me prisoner and I've done nothing to him." "He looked a little upset when he came back out, you know," said Verena softly. The plucking continued. It was soothing. "Why would I care?" The plucking stopped. Till looked over his shoulder again to see Verena glowering at him with a glare so ice-cold he wanted to shrink back and sit right on top of the smoldering logs. "He is taking care of you, he has all of us looking out for you, he's teaching you." With a wave of her arm she gestured around the tents and wagons that surrounded them. "There are people here who've spent all their lives with him, who've dedicated their lives to him for the chance to learn something, and you... you get picked up from the road, you didn't even have to look for us, you're not doing a lick of work around the camp but you get to sleep in his tent and read his journal? Why would you care? Indeed, why would you care." Her tone was soft and dripping with venom. "He's eating out of your hand already, so why would you make any effort." Till was stunned, more so by the fact of this gentle girl's unexpected tirade than what it actually said. His mind had enough trouble working through her outburst to circle in on the content and understand it. As soon as it was ready to swoop in on the matter of that ancient Paric text being Faren's diary, he was pulled out of his staring paralysis by Cole's gruff voice: "That's enough. Go to bed." The man stood behind Verena now and patted her head soothingly, which only made her try and snake it out of the way with complaining noises. She batted at his hand and got up. "He has no right to be here!" she said, pointing at Till. She looked much younger like this, like a ten-year-old. Till would not have been surprised if she stomped her foot down now. He edged a little further away on the log and turned to face them both, with a leg hooked under the other. "Exactly, so tell him to let me go," he said. Cole's blue-eyed frown turned from Verena to him. "You're not a prisoner, Dil," he said. People called him that here for some reason. "I'm not allowed to leave, and when I wander too far from the camp someone miraculously appears and manhandles me back. What would you call that?" "Safety, you idiot," said Verena condescendingly. "It's dangerous in the woods, especially for someone like you." "Someone like me?" Till frowned. "Some namby-pamby city boy," said Verena in a high-pitched tone with exaggerated pronunciation of the consonants, touching her hands to her cheeks and wagging her head sideways. That earned her a gentle slap over the head from Cole. That was a strange thing to witness. Verena was old enough to be considered a woman and he was fairly certain that Cole was not her father, so seeing him treat her like an unruly child like this was most surreal in Till's eyes. Almost comical. He let out a short laugh, but quickly caught himself again. "I do not talk like that," he muttered and stood up. "Oi dew naught tork loik thaaat," said Verena and got another slap over the back of her head and a gruff "Off with ye!" from Cole. Glaring at Till, Verena shouldered her lute and stomped away to a painted wagon. Cole and Till watched her go and once she was climbing up the wooden steps, Cole said: "She's not wrong, you know. You're lucky." He shrugged a little, patting his thighs in the process. "Lucky?" Again, Till found it best to repeat the last word of whatever it was he did not comprehend. He only hoped it had not sounded too brattish. He really wanted Cole to elaborate and shed some light on this mystery of his being here. Cole smiled behind his beard and tapped his nose with a finger. "Chief likes ya. I wouldn't question it. He's found himself some company for the tent, now the rest of us won't have to feel guilty for pairing off." With this, the man turned and stepped over the log to walk to his own tent, where, Till knew, his pregnant wife was lying under a pile of sheepskins. He stared after Cole. On the other side of the glowing ash, Vitya murmured over the lamps, extinguishing the blue flames in them. Till had forgotten about him. "Hey, does everyone here – does everyone think -" he tried, pointing at Cole, who was just vanishing behind his tent-flap. He searched Vitya's shaded face desperately, and the man had the audacity to laugh at him. "That you're shaggin'? Aye. Everyone knows." He got up, carefully hoisting the leather sack full of cudgels and such. "Get the lanterns, will you?" he said, nodding to the lamps sitting in the grass. Till gaped. Vitya's hesitation in turning and his insistent nod to the lamps got him moving again. He walked around the firepit and picked the lanterns up. "We're not, you know," tried Till as he followed Vitya to the wagon where they would stow the sack and lamps away. "You're not what," said Vitya. "… shagging," said Till after clearing his throat. "I'm not his, uhm... companion." Vitya looked at him suspiciously before hefting the sack up onto the wagon. "Looks like you are." "Well, I'm not," insisted Till as he found the rope for the lanterns dangling down the side and fed it through the iron rings. Vitya covered the sack of weapons with another hide, from a small boar. "You're in his tent, though. Might as well go the whole hog," he said with a shrug and a smirk that made Till quickly lower his eyes back on the rope he was tying. He probably would go the whole hog, he mused, if only he knew what all this was about, why Faren kept a magical diary in ancient Paric, murdered nobles, and most importantly, abducted people and kept them as pets of sorts. It wasn't up to him, anyway. He was not at liberty to decide anything here and whether or not he found Faren attractive was beside every relevant point. Faren had not even tried anything like that... telling him his eyes were pretty and kissing him once did not really count. It was obvious that Faren was confused by something to do with Till, or the way he looked, or his name. And it was just as obvious that 'shagging' was not something that Faren had planned for him. If there even was a plan.
  7. I changed the content of Contemplation and Coma in Batshit Mages. It changes the story.

  8. It seems as though the author hasn't continued. ... in ten years. ... Dammit, I'm old. Thank you for uncovering this, Myr!
  9. Hello! Years and years ago a friend had given me copypasted chapters of a story titled "The Gift of Ys". It was incomplete then and I wanted to see if the author had added to it or even finished it. The author's name was Jae Monroe, and I don't know what domain/website it was from. It's a sort of political gay romance set in a medieval/ancient fantasy world (though without magic or mythical races/creatures), in which men are sorted in "little brothers" (Darani) and "big brothers" (Dajani) according to their physical stature, and that determines their social role and status. The main character Isidore is married off to the ruler of a larger and more powerful country for political reasons and has to try and settle into his new life at a court where he has no say in anything. I have 14 chapters of it (almost 300 pages in the format my friend used - about 134200 words). If anyone here has heard of it or could give me a hint where to look, I would be very grateful.
  10. I'm not dead but very preoccupied, so I've had to stay away from GA. I've put all my stories on hold for this reason (except for The Wardrobe, which can't be edited without changing the title because another story apparently has the same title) and will wake them up one by one when I manage to produce something for them again.
    Once the clusterfuck that is my life calms down again.

    See you then.

    1. Lisa


      Doc, I hope everything's ok...

  11. I hope you told your "individual" that this is excellent, Valkyrie.
  12. Thank you so much again, Lisa! It's not quite like that. It's entirely self-deprecating: "I have found new fault in me, just more for me to mention" But I really like the alternative perspectives you always add. They force me to proofread everything from a different angle that I wouldn't have thought of on my own. And I'm bashfully honoured that you read this several times. =}
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