NaNoWriMo 2014

Stones at Greby Burial Field

Inspired by Sarah Kettle’s NaNo, I decid­ed to post some­thing as well.

Last year’s NaNo was actu­al­ly the same thing as the one I attempt­ed 2012, but very much refo­cused. Since I fin­ished the first draft, I’ve out­lined the sequel (I’d intend­ed to write that dur­ing Camp NaNo, but end­ed up not hav­ing time for it). I’ve also out­lined anoth­er in the series, with plans for the final book as well.

This is going to be the “anoth­er” ref­er­enced above. It may or may not be two books (it fol­lows two peo­ple who inter­act occa­sion­al­ly while doing their own thing), but I’m writ­ing it as a sin­gle at the moment.

A burial ground of dreams

Blut­wald, Vendela’s stalk­er, left a trail of bod­ies. One sur­vived, saved only because Vendela and Andrej defeat­ed Blut­wald. That one is Belin­da, who now–six months after the end of her har­row­ing experience–flees Stock­holm by board­ing the first train out. Oth­er pas­sen­gers goof­ing around trig­gers a pan­ic attack, and she leaves the train in the mid­dle of nowhere, which is more-or-less where she stays. Meet­ing Vendela (again) and Sia con­vinced her to take her heal­ing away from the city of painful mem­o­ries. And, of course, the enig­mat­ic Mal­brecht (who comes and goes as he please) isn’t mak­ing things less pleas­ant.

Not to spoil too much, but Mal­brecht isn’t quite straight­for­ward with who he real­ly is, and she’s forced to trav­el to Hel to free him. Sia can’t help, but Katja–a fash­ion designer-gone-Valkyria–can, so they trav­el togeth­er on Katja’s giant raven steed. See­ing Blut­wald bar­ring the way, Belin­da flees in pan­ic, get­ting lost among the branch­es of Yggdrasil. Lose her san­i­ty, or the man she’s start­ing to love? Tough call.

Duty calls

When Kat­ja in affect agreed to become imbued as a Valkyrie (to save her girl­friend Sia, her ex friend-with-ben­e­fits Andrej, and Vendela from a mon­ster who’d kid­napped them) she bit off more than she could chew. Per­haps she shouldn’t be sur­prised that the power­boost came with small print, but now she’s sup­posed to col­lect dead peo­ple for Fre­ja. As it turns out, someone’s been steal­ing the dead while they’ve wait­ed In-Between to be tak­en to their prop­er place, and it’s up to Kat­ja (the first Valkyr­ia in cen­turies) to track the thief down and save the dead.

Shout-out to my friend Erin Jef­freys Hodges who’s helped inspire me.

Cast

Belinda

She’s a frail-look­ing woman in her mid-twen­ties, born and raised in a sub­urb of Stock­holm. Her pale skin is cov­ered in gold­en freck­les, and more than a few scars, cour­tesy of Blut­wald. Her hair is straw­ber­ry blonde and wavy, and she has dark blue eyes. Once she had vivid dreams–dreams of ancient bat­tles on the west coast of Swe­den, among oth­er things–but Blut­wald killed them. She lives with the cold, and the survivor’s guilt. She shouldn’t have sur­vived.

Malbrecht

With broad shoul­ders and scars on his hands and oth­er places, he is clear­ly a war­rior. He has shoul­der-length, dark-brown hair that’s gen­er­al­ly kept in a pony­tail. His fash­ion sense is eccen­tric, pre­fer­ring belt­ed tunics to more usu­al west­ern fash­ions. His favourite seems to be a saf­fron yel­low one, trimmed with dark brown/pale yel­low tar­tan. His mem­o­ries are con­sumed by the woman he failed, and see­ing Belin­da he decides that he will not fail her.

Katja

Ambi­tious and dri­ven are good words to describe her. She’s a fash­ion design­er who’s just about to make it, with a pen­chant for strong colours that con­trast beau­ti­ful­ly with her dark brown skin and short, black hair. Though the idea of being in a com­mit­ted rela­tion­ship kind of freaks her out sub­con­cious­ly, she is com­ing to terms with her love for Sia, the first per­son she’s real­ly cared for. Yes, she loves Andrej, but they were nev­er lovers in the roman­tic sense, only in the car­nal.

Sia

Sia loves the 50s fash­ion, and often sews her own clothes, part­ly since she’s grown tired of most stores not hav­ing clothes that fit her curve­some body. Her black hair is cut into a bob, and the cheer­ful demeanor belies the pow­er­ful rune worker–sejd woman–beneath. She is unapolo­get­i­cal­ly gay, though before Kat­ja she man­aged to find a long string of girl­friends who lat­er denied ever hav­ing been into women. Where Vendela is cold and emo­tion­less, Sia is warm and pas­sion­ate, and has always been.

Vendela

Cold and cool, deal­ing with the trau­ma of her par­ents death–both through ther­a­py and ban­ish­ing the man who killed them–she is start­ing to warm up. Her mag­ic is unique among the group in that it is innate, inher­it­ed from her skogsrå (for­est guardian) great-grand­moth­er. Fea­ture-wise she is tall and slen­der, with pale skin and heavy, white-blonde locks.

Andrej

Sexy and predatory–if main­ly unconciously–he is tall with dark hair in a pony­tail, and gen­er­al­ly wear­ing tai­lored suits. His pater­nal grand­par­ents were Russ­ian nobil­i­ty, but as his father mar­ried a Swedish com­mon­er, he rarely men­tions his her­itage him­self. He is a wolf shifter, the pow­er inher­it­ed from his grand­moth­er. Before Vendela he was a play­boy, but he fell hard for her, and in his fam­i­ly, there is such a thing as a one, true love.


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