Donne & Donne Archives

September 7, 2007

Dave: The Fumbled Winter

"Notice anything odd about the weather, dear?"

Roger shook his head, brushing the snow off his overcoat, and hanging it up on the coat rack.  "Can't say I have, why?"

"Well, it's July."


"And we live in San Francisco."

"Last I checked."

"And all this snow ...."

"Twain said the coldest winter he'd ever spent was summer in San Francisco."

"Yes, but -- and nobody seems to think it odd.  Including you."

Roger scratched his head, then shrugged. 

"And then there are those Valkyries in the sky."

Roger laughed.  "Chrys, if you wore one of those brass bras in this cold, you'd be screeching, too."

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September 13, 2007

Dave: Terms and Conditions

"You sprinkled the basilisk blood in a circle."

"Yeah.  If that's the yellow goop, yeah."





"You said the words I gave you."

"Jazhmazol, Frelli--"

"Not! Here!  Hmmmm.  You lit each of the candles in order?"

"Zippo Black Crackle -- never fails."

"The chickens?"

Roger glared.  "Yeah.  Never again."


"I killed plenty of chickens for supper, growing up,.  For magic's different."

"Not even to save your --? That's it!  Your wife!"

"What about her?"

"You're not a virgin.  Of course it didn't work."

Roger decked him.  It was either that or shoot him, and he still needed the wizard to find Chrys.

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September 26, 2007

Dave: Family Gatherings

The ship slowly pulled into Hong Kong's cluttered harbor, and Roger watched the  junks and sampans and whatever they called them clustering about and making a general navigational threat of themselves.

"Well, we made it," he told Chrys.

"We could have been here sooner.  Uncle Lu --"

"You may trust your uncle to witch us from San Francisco to here.  I don't."

"His feelings were hurt." 

"His hands tremble too much.  Besides --"


"Hard to object to something that gives us a few weeks alone." He smiled at her.

"A tramp steamer is hardly the Queen Mary."

"It is with you aboard, honey."

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October 9, 2007

Dave: Long Walk to a Short Peer

Chrys flopped down on a boulder.  "How long have we been walking?"

Roger glanced at his watch. Again.  "Couple of hours, I guess, but this thing's still not working"

"A-yah.  I should have brought different shoes."

He chuckled.  "Never thought I'd miss the old army boots, but they'd be better on this kind of ground than wingtips."

"Try heels, dearest."

"Me and Uncle Miltie."  Roger surveyed the pinkish rock fields under an orange, sunless sky.  "How much further you think?"

Chrys shrugged.  "Until the Taotai decides the joke's over.  Or we get someplace.  Either way --"  She raised and accepted a hand up. "-- let's go."

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October 23, 2007

Dave: Under Their Gaze

Roger couldn't shake the feeling he was under observation.  He looked at passers-by, but caught nobody watching him.  He tried all the usual tricks -- looking at reflections in windows, sudden doubling back, ducking through stores into alleys -- but he still couldn't spot anyone, or escape that sensation.

He leaned back against a building, gaze drifting.  He had an old cantrip from the war, but it was risky.  He'd see them, but they'd know they'd been seen.  No choice, though, and he muttered the nonsense nursery rhyme softly, then looked around.

Blink.  Blink-blink. Blink.

Roger cursed.  In this case, the walls did have eyes ...

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November 8, 2007

Dave: Meanwhile, deep underground ...

"Should it be doing that?"

"Doing what?"  Her eyes and attention were still on the scroll in her hands.

"Glowing like that."

"Maybe.  What color?"


Chrys said a word  that she'd once slapped me for using, and swung around  to stare at the statue.  "No, it should not."

"We need to leave?"


"Got any doors not blocked by rubble?"

She nodded at the graven foo-dog, glowing like the coals of a fire, though he could feel no heat.  "That will deal knocking a hole in the wall when it's unleashed.  Unfortunately, we won't be in a position to use it."


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December 4, 2007

Dave: "Togetherness"

The first crone spoke.  "Let them be bound together, metals alloyed, melted, fused, bound by their substance for all time."

The second crone spoke.  "Let them be blurred, combined, made one out of two, made sole out of few, bound in mind for all time."

The third crone spoke.  "Let them be hemmed in, contained in arcane, drawn so tightly they are bound in soul for all time."

Roger leaned his head back to Chrys's ear.  "You know, in the right circumstances, this could actually be romantic."

She snorted.  "Yeah, without ropes and if it were a blessing, not a curse."

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December 17, 2007

Dave: The Latest Thing

Roger took the wrap off Chrys' shoulders, then felt her stiffen.  He looked up, followed her gaze. 

The denizens of the ballroom were anything but fashionable.  Their clothing was ragged, in tatters.  Their hair was dirty and knotted. Their cheeks were sunken and they shuffled listlessly across the polished wooden floor.

"I see why Mrs Patterson was concerned about her son," Chrys said.

"These guys look like DPs, or camp refugees, not the 'leading fashion lights of San Francisco,'" Roger muttered.

"But there's Alanna St John over there.  She's a top model.  And there's the Mayor, too.  Roger, what the hell's going on here?"

"Let's find out."

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January 21, 2008

Dave: Bottoms up

"Have a drink, Mr. Donne."

Roger smiled.  "No thanks.  I know the trick.  Food and drink in Fairyland makes for a long stay."

Uncle Chu chuckled.  "Don't be silly, my boy.  That's for your European fae.  Sip, sup, and be enslaved forever. Very uncivilized.  I  promise you, my people practice no such tricks."  He nodded to the glass. "Please, drink."

Chrys wouldn't like it if he hacked off her favorite uncle. He nodded and tossed back the glass.

Seconds later, Roger slid off the chair, gasping, limbs leaden.  "My people," Uncle Chu continued, standing over him now, "prefer to poison their enemies outright."

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February 6, 2008

Dave: On the Way to a Mystery

Roger saw the windshield shatter before the sound of the gunshot reached them. He highly respected his wife's speed, but his reflexes were honed in the war, his reaction was nearly without thought. "Cover!" he shouted, tackling Chrys down to the gravelly dirt of the road, behind the car.

"Ow," glared Chrys. 

"Blame them for getting your dress dirty, not me," Roger said. Another window shattered, followed by another crack. "Sniper rifle, big caliber," he commented, head cocked. "Not US Army. Not Krauts, either." 

"Why," asked Chrys, "would ghosts use guns?"

"Better yet, how are we going avoid becoming ghosts ourselves?"

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