Out of The Darkness: Chapter 7 Discussion

Heading into Chapter seven, things are finally beginning to physically change for our dear nameless protagonist.  He’s reached the age when his fairy blood begins to awaken, and his master will discover just what type of fairy he’s got on his hands.  So far, the brutality, isolation, and cruelty encountered by the slave should be enough to waken his heritage in such a way that he will forever remain the the Arenas, no matter if he wins or not.  However, that would have been the easy way out.  What type of fun would it be to read about someone who enjoys killing for the sake of killing?  Instead, there’s a twist in the story here, and it sets up for events later down the line.

The changes don’t come out all at once, but rather piecemeal as the child discovers them on his own.  The focus is still tightly regulated to the point of view of the child, and the opportunities for actual dialogue are still limited.  There’s a little more outside history brought to light, and I did try to keep a light hand with it.  It is pertinent to what’s happening, which made it a bit of a challenge to introduce it without falling off into pages of research notes.

There is a continuing thread of development for Nameless – he’s not just a well oiled killer.  He’s beginning to show some actual thoughts beyond the personal fences he put up to protect himself in his environment.  No longer is the tenet “This is”  and “This is the worst I’ll ever be” enough.  Now, he is beginning to consider something more.  Something bigger than himself.

You can see it in this snippet here:

“When he had finished his meal, and stacked the plate in its usual place by the door to his cell, he returned to his thinking spot.  His thoughts centered on last night’s matches, and the crowd’s responses. He did not consider the probability that he was playing into anyone’s hands, or that he was different. He only knew that he had failed to win an approval from crowds and his master continued to be pleased with him.

He had enjoyed playing with his opponent.  The sense of expectation for the next move, the way his opponents had shown fear in their eyes before he had even moved in to finish them.  The thrill he had felt actually increased his enjoyment the cat-and-mouse game he had established. And, somehow, his opponent’s fear had also given him a power he was just beginning to recognize as something to garner. ”

He still has no idea what is going on outside of his very small world, but he is beginning to develop an idea that there is a world beyond his cell and the Arena.

For the actual development of the character, I was faced with several key issues:

  • The traditional faerie sensitivity to iron – Even in a prehistoric world, there is going to be some metal that is the bane of the faerie types.  To make it easier on myself, I cheated and introduce forged iron.  Yeah, I know.  It’s cheating.  Guess what?  This is my story, so I’m using iron.
    • The sensitivity is highlighted here:  “.  Even as his fingers struck, the sword once again found purchase on his body. Down his ribs the sword skittered, leaving an open gash much larger than it should have for such a weak blow. As the swordswoman collapsed, so did the child. He balled up, his face contorted in a rictus of pain from the cold iron which had found him”
  • Physically aging the character – with the age he is, he should have hit his full growth.  However, being from a race that can live a very, very long time, the question arose about how he would appear.  Would it be child-like, or more teenage?  Maybe even a babyish adult?  Except for the obvious elements needed for him to have survived as long as he has, I decided to leave most of this up to the reader.  There were more important physical aspects I needed to focus on.
  • Physical changes – from almost every game system I’ve run across when dealing with a race that has a blood quantum that awakens, there almost always winds up being some type of physical change.  I decided to keep that for this work, though the foundation I work from allows for these changes to remain hidden from casual view.  It was more interesting to create a more limited effect.  It also ties the character deeper into the overall religious structure within the world/realm that I’ve built.
    • With most of the elements that weave through the story I did my best to keep them understated.  Such as what happened here: “The tide of physiological changes had crested would not be stemmed. Despite the foul conditions he lived in and the poor diet he lived on for so long, the changes had reached a point where they were self-sustaining until the rudimentary new organs were fully mature. Had he lived the life of freedom, as most fey did, the physical changes would not have become apparent – only manifesting when he wished them to, rather than becoming actual alterations to his appearance. Under the conditions in which he had awoken, the manifestations were permanent and often unnoticed.”
  • The issue of how well conditioned he is for the live he is living – granted, he has not been exposed to anything else, but even for someone who has been through similar circumstances, he is unusual.  He enjoys the life he has, and has the driving need to be the best.  With the only competition he has being his past performance, he drives himself unmercifully to obey, to please, and to live by the strictures others have instructed him to live within.  This can clearly be seen in the snippet
    • When he reached his cell in the Death Sentence, he entered without being ordered, to the slight disgruntlement of the cell’s manager. He now knew this routine well.  Like a well trained animal, he did not fight the necessity of being in the smaller confinement before he could have his fun. This was the part that he savored. It gave him a chance to build his own edge for the fights to come – time to hone his desire and hunger, time to see something besides the solid walls of his stall-cell.  It also gave him time to harness his anger at the fate he had been given from birth – to always fight for something he did not know, understand, or comprehend. Time to renew his own personal promise to himself that he would obey, and in obeying.. live.

Out of the Darkness: Chapter 6 Discussion

The child has now learned what it means to be a fighter.  He did not escape his first foray into this without injury, and was taken back to his original cell to be magically healed.  He awakens to find himself being observed and tied down to his manger/bed, but is soon freed after a short visit by his master and some other.

With the return of his preferred solitude, he shows just how much he has learned with this passage here:

“He started on his routine, again using calisthenics, rather than running for the initial work. He drove himself even harder, knowing now what he would have to face. As he worked through his routine, he pushed himself to move faster than before and strike at the shadows with more force. As the torch guttered to its death, he practiced the techniques he had learned from his training to deal the same. The movements were now so much muscle memory, his mind was able to go over the fight from the Arena he had just endured. The agile maneuverings of his enemy, his own responses to their moves – both the ones that brought him proper defenses and those that brought him injury.  His thoughts ran along pathways that were beginning to develop the tactics and strategies that he would use in the rest of his Arena career. As his mind worked through the maze of ideas that were spawning, his body shifted into the blend of techniques suggested by the mentally replayed fight.

Against his mental shadows he continued to work for many glass. When his meal arrived, he stopped to eat. After he had eaten in the same methodical way he had worked that morning, he tried to resume his work, but his stiffened muscles refused to cooperate. He found himself having to return to the warm up and stretching exercises again to loosen his body back up. Frustrated because of this, he fought to increase his speed yet again without sacrificing any of the precision he had learned. He sped through the first part of the day again, and approached the afternoon’s routine after several more exhausting glass. The routine he had started the day before began to flow through his mind, and his body followed in the complete darkness that was his first world. His muscles were finally loose and responsive, and the food he had eaten for the meal began to give him the energy and urge to fight – the blend of herbs in the meat proving to be as effective with his physiology as they were with any other. ”

We also discover that the fighters fight because of something more than just their training or desire for freedom – there seems to be something in the food they are given that makes them more aggressive and gives them a desire to go out and fight.

More of the culture is revealed with the response to his second fight – short, brutal, and bloody.  But, the crowd’s do not approve.  They don’t approve at all.  As he is being sent out to his next match, he is given an instruction that allows him to show his adaptability – does he listen to the person who ordered him, or does he ignore it.  By rights, he could have gone either way.  Let’s see how he decides:

“”Make it last this time! Don’t cut it so short. Living is only part of it. Bore them, and you will die, Silk!”

The surprise almost caused him to stumble as he stepped out into the soft, giving Sands. He had never been given such succinct advice by anyone before. And he was forced to make the snap judgment if it was an order to be followed, or one that the speaker had any authority to give. Replaying the words as he searched the Sands, he decided that it was something he had to follow.  He interpreted it as though it had to do with movement from the cell to the Sands. But how to obey nagged at him as he recovered his balance smoothly, and continued out to the center to await the start of the next fight. ”

He is beginning to think for himself, but there is no real direction for his thinking, except brute survival.  He must survive his fights – he has been so ordered, and that is what he will do.  He doesn’t know any other way to show his obedience.

In this fight, we get to see more of his adaptability, as his chosen amalgamated style is highlighted.  He has to shift his style because of an unexpected injury, and along the way he has to figure out how to please the crowds.  One of the ways he was doing so is highlighted here:

“His face losing even more of the boyish innocence that had marked him just two days prior. The attitude change was visible even to those in the lower seats of the stands, causing the crowds to roar their approval. It was a rare treat for them to see a boy become a man in the Arena.

Often the fighters that were introduced to were men much before their time; as such it was always a gamble on their endurance, not on their mental state. ”

The scene closes with a high point of his new career – he becomes known for the brutal way in which he finishes off his opponents.  He may toy with them, but when he finishes them off, it is abrupt and bloody.  It also has a terrifying finality about it, as can be seen here:

“When the end came, it was sudden; a similar repetition of the child’s debut. One moment, the two were contending for dominance over each other, their bodies clashing into each other, hands and feet flying almost beyond visible speed. Then suddenly, the child was standing alone, the opponent he had been pounding on collapsing slowly at his feet. Blood flowed from the nose and throat where the larynx had been exposed to the air of the excitement which had built around the two during the match. ”

 

That’s it for now.  Until next time … keep those pages turning!

If I’ve peaked your interest, you can find a copy of Out of the Darkness on

SmashwordsBarns and NobleiTunesScribd, and Amazon

Out of the Darkness: Chapter 5 Discussion

The, as yet, still nameless main character has been in training a while.  And, he has begun to show an implacable dedication to what he considers his writs about life.  When he is told to do something, he does it until told to stop.  So, is it unusual that when he is in the Arena, he trains?  He does this so much that even during his allowed rest time, the trainer has to make a decision about how to handle this child.  He can discipline the boy, and drive him into resting at the expense of letting the other children take advantage of the food bearing slaves, or he can focus on distributing the food and let the child train.

I elected to have this little by-play remain in place because I felt it was necessary to firmly establish the child’s dedication to accomplishment.  In part, it would allow me to have the child show some creativity, but also in part because I knew even at this early of a point in the story that the child could not be like any of the others.  It was not critical for him to be stronger, faster, smarter than the others, but this mindless dedication comes into play a little later on.

Here you can see that by-play:

“He did continue to be last in line during the training sessions when food was served, because he had established that he would focus on his perfection, not on his stomach. Vergol had tried reprimanding him over this particular idiosyncrasy even going as far as withholding the portion, but had never managed to prevent the Silk from continuing the habit. As such, he had finally given in, and set the plate for the odd child aside until everyone else had been fed. In part the child did this because it ensured he got the drink his body craved so desperately first, but also, it gave him up to an hour of extra practice to finish working on perfecting some technique. And in this time he could also practice the amalgam of styles he was developing, because there were none who had the time or desire to cuff him for not using the pure techniques. In this, again Vergol had tried several times to make a change in the child’s patterns and failed.”

He has managed to figure out at least the three basic parts of the day, but once he has started on a routine, he continues through it without deviation.

I also used this section to begin foreshadowing that the main character was not gong to be the same as most of the other characters.  While, true to life, some people can handle pain better than others, in this case, it is for a different reason.  Here is an example

“The administered cuffs just did not seem to reach this child the same way as the others. His ability to soak pain was amazing to all who knew him, and unnatural to those who only heard of it. His tenacity of routine was just as out of place for one who could only count seventeen years of life, but he seemed to be one who was not meant to be counted amongst the “normal” at all. ”

Now, with the child’s drive for perfection isolating him from his training group, he is quickly advanced into other groups in an attempt to keep him out of the actual Arena combat for a little while longer.  However, his drive forces his Owner into a tough decision, and he enters the Arena early.  But, because this is done under duress, we get to see a little of the culture here.  Cruel – yes.  Callous – definitely.  But, they also want to be entertained.  Death is common, but how that death is accomplished is what brings the masses to their feet and gets their blood pumping.  Much like Rome, this culture has a blood lust that will not be denied.  So, we come to this passage:

“Gartal did manage to wring some concessions from giving in to the pressure.  Most Fighters had to fight in a round robin style debut – fighting until they either were killed, or collapsed. Because of his age, and the fact that Gartal had such a reputation from running three fighters who had become champions, he was able to limit the number of initial matches the child would face  to no more than five per day. It was thought this would be enough to tax the child, but not enough to overextend him beyond his ability.”

All right, there is more here than culture, you also get to see how one of the secondary characters thinks.  At least where the main character is concerned.  It does help to build a little more mystery around the child.  After all, if his Owner is willing to cash in some of his political clout to preserve this one fighter, what makes him so special, right?  As the action of the plot begins to transition from the focus on training into a focus on the fighting, the mentality of the child is brought out a little more.  The question of how his dedication to a routine is answered, because his routine is abruptly disrupted by his change in status from boy-child-trainee to boy-child-fighter.  Now, instead of training all day, he is an athlete expected to be at his peak when he performs at night.  His answer to this is highlighted here:

“His natural ability to accept things as they were once again enforced itself in his mentality. He stolidly waited in his cell for the unknown to happen, and reveal what the new way was. However, even then, his body was used to being pushed hard to its limits on a daily basis.  He was unable to remain still for long so began to go through his techniques, as if he were actually in the Sands. The only part of the routine he did not follow was the run that always came first. The space available in his cell was no longer large enough to allow this, causing him instead to modify the hard cardiovascular workout to a more intensive, but sedate method.  Through trial and error, he quickly developed his own style of calisthenics. He did not know why the run was important, but he understood and enjoyed the feeling of invigoration he felt after the run was complete.  He also enjoyed the feeling of invincibility when he took the seemingly extra energy given from the run and turned it to his pell work. The other thing he did not follow exactly was the weapons drill he had started, but not mastered. He could force his limbs to follow the movements, but without the weight of the practice blade in his hand, he could not temper his body to the extra weight. For once, his ability to perfect a technique on his own from remembering what he had been shown failed him. ”

And, also, he is given a few minor flaws – make more real.  He doesn’t push himself as hard as he thinks he does when he is by himself.  It takes someone other to make him perform at his best.  He also does not have a superhuman ability to some how mysteriously make his body work empty handed as if it had a weapon to work against.  It was the small things like this that made crafting this section interesting for me.  Finding the little nit-picking things to bring out that showed him to be something other than perfect.  One of the imperfections I enjoyed writing the most in this book was when the child had to figure out what clothes were.  For those who have toddlers or other youngsters who are just now starting the process of learning how to dress themselves, please let me know how close I got to the actual process your little ones used the first time they tried to dress themselves.

“with the visual instruction he now understood that he was to pull something over his head. Something that would cover him as some of the Steels had been covered from neck to ankle. Elated, because he thought this was a sure sign of approval, he swarmed over to the pile and picked up the topmost piece. He began pulling it on, trying to pull the pant leg over his head, and struggling to understand where his arms were to poke through to cover his body properly. The girl laughed, and soon another sound joined her bright bells of laughter. The deeper rumble of laughter came from his master; he noted this when he finally managed to bunch the pant leg up enough to sit uncomfortably around his neck.  The rough material reminded him for the first time in many years about the pain he was constantly experiencing. As he looked at his master, one leg of the trousers bunched around his neck, the other dangling ridiculously over an arm, the waist hanging oddly from his shoulder, ”

When he finally enters the Arena as a debut fighter, there are many things that are similar and different from what has been shown before.  Now, the child is facing his own possible death, as well as the necessity of killing others.  Since this is what he is trained for, it seems pointless for everyone to keep ordering him to win, but it is often shown that knowing how to kill someone does not mean the person or character has the will to do this.  Here, the child’s dedication to his routine, his single-mindedness to obeying the letter of his orders, and the isolation he was reared in all come into play.  With all of these factors working together and supporting eachother, the scene is set for what happens here:

“As he located it, the flag fell, and he found himself obeying the last order he had received without thought. He launched himself at the nearest opponent, his arms beginning the open sweeps of his official form. He felt his wrist impact a solid bony limb, and not bothering to discover if it had been a head, arm, or shin, he spun. His foot lashing out viciously towards the midsection of the man who had come within range behind him. The shock told him he had made a full impact. Even then, he had turned to face the next opponent, and found himself facing someone who was not just better trained, but faster in the same style.”

Needless to say, he wins the fight.  After all, if he didn’t, there would be no main character to write about, would there?

Most of the rest of this chapter deals with the actual fight itself.  Though not quite a blow-by-blow recounting, there is enough gory detail to satisfy many thriller readers, and to turn many stomachs of the more genteel fantasy readers.  However, it also establishes the tone for the rest of the book – bloody combat, the harsh reality of fighting for survival, and the uncomplicated desire to live.  It also begins to highlight the fact that the main character, while the result of his training and rearing also is the product of his own personality.  He is NOT a nice boy.  He thrives on the bloody by-play of the Arena to which he has become exposed, and willingly allows himself to become dedicated to.

Now, with the scene coming to a close, it is time to evaluate what the child’s future potential may be.  He has taken several injuries that should have been debilitating, and yet he remains standing.  Up until the last paragraph.  Here we see the child succumb to his injuries, once more providing a sense of realism:

“As the body of his last opponent crumpled, so did his own. He was not awake to hear the adulation that was heaped upon him.  It was rare that a child’s debut should have such a clear-cut victory.

 

Until next time …. keep those pages turning!

 

If I’ve peaked your interest, you can find a copy of Out of the Darkness on

SmashwordsBarns and NobleiTunesScribd, and Amazon

Tolor Interviews Celcanepo

 

Celecanepo (know also to the cast in The Followers of Torments saga as Celeca) is one of the more unique characters in the work.  After Tolor visited with her, Jena contacted me, and made a couple of very good observations.

There are a couple of points that appear to be inconsistencies, yet when you think about her condition, they make perfect sense.  As I will be addressing these points when I get to her novella, here are a couple of teasers to think about before you head over to read the interview:

She can heal others, yet her own wings remain a painful, shattered disaster.

  • That was done by her tribunal of judges. They left her the ability to heal others, but blocked her from self-healing. It’s more like a curse, than actual physical damage. Over time, they should have healed themselves, like any other bone.
  • Something I realized after I’d started writing her character. And, when she “proves” to her tribunal that she’s worth of being allowed to return home, she will find that her wings heal quickly. (Again, like real people – when you can accept yourself, many of your self-inflicted wounds can finally heal.)

There is quite a bit of humanity in general reflected in her personality as a character, and I’m hoping that when her story comes out, you will enjoy reading it as much as I’m looking forward to writing it.

Character Madness Monday-Interview 4 of 5 The Followers of Torments

This Week Tolor Interviews

Celecanepo Raghadeyah

Interview 4 of 5

from

The Followers of Torments, series,

by K Caffee

Tell us about your story

It is a long and sad tale.  However, I did overhear you speaking with Raonal.  You wish this to focus on the part that involves the Master.
For that, I cannot say much.  I met him after I had just been freed for misconduct by my previous master, and he was in such pain.  It called to me like none have before.  Though I am an outcast Guardian, I also remember when I was still in the tribunal’s good graces.  The tale being told, I hope is one of redemption.  One that perhaps will enable all those with the Master to be redeemed into the good graces of our respective people.

Out of the Darkness: Chapter 4 Discussion

Survival

This is a transition chapter. It focuses on the child’s mental ability, and begins drawing out some of the role play information. It presents a child with an eidetic memory who is a masochist. His powers of concentration are also highlighted a little more, such as what is noted in this scene:

“Because of his isolation, he had never learned to wolf his food to keep another from eating it. So when the food was delivered to his darkened cell, he often would be deeply involved in a mental drill of the moves, and what they were to look like, often he ignored the food until it was cold. Sometimes, the same portion that had been delivered the night before would still be sitting just inside the door and untouched when the breakfast portion was served.
He had learned well that perfection was the driving force of the Arena, and so drove himself mercilessly to achieve it. Day by day, week by week flowed by him as he perfected not just what he was taught, but also what he was teaching himself. In his sparring sessions, he learned quickly what the weaknesses of his official forms were, and from observation which other forms were viable against each other. In each case, his agile mind adapted the moves he had learned by observation of the opposition. His mind was sharp enough and active enough to now memorize everything from seeing it only once. The trained eidetic memory that he had developed worked almost in over drive to replay scene after scene when he was returned to his cell. Little did he know that such intensive mental work was unusual to any fighter, even others who had been raised in isolation. Especially after they had been introduced to the concept that there were other beings out there with whom they could interact. But his young mind was still rigidly held to the mandate that what was, was the only way it could be. ”

It is also noted that the child is a fast learner. How fast, however has not yet been completely shown.The foundations laid down in Chapter 3 have begun to take root, and the small sapling can be seen in the above example. Also, his iron will is becoming more prominent. The will that allows him to continue on when his body tries to give up.

So far, the child continues to seem like everyone else, just a little tougher, a lot more stubborn, and so driven even his master worries over how fast he is progressing.

 

Until next time… keep those pages turning!

If I’ve peaked your interest, you can find a copy of Out of the Darkness on

SmashwordsBarns and NobleiTunesScribd, and Amazon

Jena Baxter’s Tolor Interviews Beslynx

 

Tolor managed to actually catch the ‘cat, and convince her  to chat with him.  I’m not exactly sure how, as I think she’s working on a few ugly plans for me.  However, I still like the independent lady.  While you’re perusing her interview, I think I’m going to go find the biggest steak I can and maybe some catnip tea.  See if I can sweeten her temper just a little in my direction.  She still doesn’t believe me that she’s got an important part to play in the Torments series.

 

Character Madness Monday – Interview 3 of 5 The Followers of Torments

This Week Tolor Interviews

Beslynx Spiritwalker

Interview 3 of 5

from

The Followers of Torments, series,

by K Caffee

Tell us about your story

Which one?  If it’s about me, you’ll have to wait.  I’ve seen you talking to the others, so I presume you wish to speak about that filth who tries to pretend to be an alpha?

Jena Baxter’s Tolor interviewed Akantheldama

 

It seems that while I’ve been working on stories, blog posts, and other catch up, the cast from the Followers of Torments got bored and went out for a field day.  Last week I was notified that Nameless had been interviewed, and this week I find out Akantheldama (the vampire) has also been interviewed.

Character Madness Monday – Interview 2 of 5 The Followers of Torments

This Week Tolor Interviews

Akantheldama

Interview 2 of 5

from

The Followers of Torments, series,

by K Caffee

Tell us about your story

There are two stories with me.  The first is how I came to be, though I have not yet attempted to chronicle that one.  The second is much later, after I had learned the rudiments of what I needed to know.  I convinced my progenitor to “lose” me in a wager to the fighter I saw so long ago in the Sands.  There is something about him… something I can not yet grasp… that is important to myself, and my House.  Only in service to him will I be able to come to understand what that something is, or to bring my rogue gifts under control.

Jena Baxter’s Tolor Interviews Nameless

 

I met Jena Baxter through her Veiled Memories tour, and we’ve since become good friends.  She’s helped me with questions, and worked on explaining some of the ropes about getting word out with my books.  The interview I’m linking you to is by Tolor, Jena’s Beran in Reflections.  How the pair of them managed to get Nameless to sit down and answer their questions is beyond me.  It’s still a fun, quick read though.

Character Madness Monday is Back

This Week Tolor Interviews Nameless

from The Followers of Torments, series,

by K. Caffee

It’s been a while since the last character interview. This will be the first of five character interviews from this series. Be prepared for a treat. Nameless speech pattern is strange to follow at first, but he has become a much loved character by many, and it becomes easier to follow after settling into the differences.

Tell us about your story

What “story” is?  Life is.  Live, die, born, become.  Is story not to anyone.

Interview with Nameless

Part I: Let’s Start at the Beginning…

  1. What’s your name?
    I have one not.
  2. Give me your full name…
    How can I?  I given one not.
  3. Do you have a nickname? If yes, what is it and how did you come to have it?
    Called I Nameless, The Nameless One, Shallius, Avessnymous by no one, everyone, anyone. Ask you why know want?
  4. What species are you? (Human, werewolf, etc? Or are you an alien?) I know you have some special gifts that aren’t entirely human.
    Some say Pukah, some say Powrie, Pukah say pukah. Hers am I, enough known is.

(Editor’s note:  He is a pukah, so don’t expect to understand when he actually says the truth.  He’s not your usual pukah, but the race cannot say an unembellished truth to save their lives.  It would be like an angel cursing God, or a demon blessing the Devil.)

Gifts?  What are Gifts?  Healers love me, fighters like me, Light surrounds me always or never.  She has cursed me, so never Her gifts do I bear – the webs that I call, the language of Her smallest children, of her Ascended Children, of Her to understand.  Where I look, others my bidding do.  Others can see the mists, I cannot, though told should I able be.  When speaking, I truth tell with eternity to pass into forgetting you.

5. Where/when were you born?
Remember it clearly.  It was darkness that glowed pretty colors.  It was beautiful.  And silent, always it was silent.
Remember not.  Fight, fight, always fight.  Fight learn, fight provide, entertain live.  Live eat did.  Surrounded always was.

(Editor’s note:  He was born in the slave cells of the Sumja Sija Arena.)

  1. Okay, now…do you believe that you are good or bad or are those terms not definable?
    What is good?  What is bad?  Fight good do.  I eat.  I live.

Part II: Tell Us More About Yourself…

  1. How would you describe your personality?
    What She asks, demands, I am.  Nothing more.
  2. Would you say you’re someone who can handle pressure? What’s a good example?
    Finals lived I. Eat I do, survive I do. More wish hear?  Fight, fight, fight, fight, always fight.  Live I do, more?
  3. Do you get along with others?
    I train Silk, I live Silk.
    (No, he does not play well with others.  He tends to break his toys.)
  4. Who are your main enemies, people you would like to see stopped from whatever they are doing?
    Those who profit wrongly from the matches.  When Clans grow big, matches use grow small.
  5. How about allies?
    What are allies?
  6. What is one things that you would like to see happen in the immediate future?
    To be Called.  I am Hers, serve as Her Child.

Part III: Hypothetically…

  1. Suppose that you could become any creature you know of. What would you pick, and why?
    I am enough.  Her Children choice can be, will be, am.
  2. One of your enemies in question 13 just complimented you. What is your response?
    Thank you. Wager against will?
  3. One of your friends in Question 14 just insulted you. What is your response?
    What friend is?
  4. If you could change anything about yourself…
    Nothing.  Everything.  All of me is perfectly wrong.
  5. Tell me about where you grew up…
    Painfully dark.  Painfully loud.  Safe for all who encounter.  Polite to each, rude to none.  That I do not remember.

Part IV: Now We Get Personal

  1. What’re your parents like?
    I have no parents.
    (Editor’s note:  He was orphaned at birth, and wet nursed on an old ewe.  His father is someone special, but you don’t discover who until the end of the series.)
  2. Do you have any siblings?
    What are those?
    (Editor’s note:  He does not.  Even his half-siblings from his mother were dead before he was born.)
  3. What’s your occupation? Do you like it?
    Owner now, then slave.
    (Editor’s note:  He is a Runner now.  He won his freedom, which is the difference between an Owner and Runner.)
  4. Are you seeing/dating anyone?
    Mean you what?
  5. If not, did you ever think about getting engaged or married and to whom?
    What that is mean you?
  6. Tell us your biggest secret.
    Secret? What mean you?
    (Editor’s note:  He is a pukah – a faerie half breed – with all the gifts and abilities that includes.  Unlike most, however, he did not develop fully when he awoke, and so does not have a complete animal shift.  However, even in his hominid form, he keeps most of his shift’s attributes.  If he would have developed properly, he would have had the unusual shift of an oversized spider, the attributes he has relate to this – fully developed poisoned fangs, the ability to spin webs, and unusually acute senses (more than his environment can account for), and a body that can withstand an extremely high amount of damage.)
  7. Your worst fear? You don’t have to answer this one if you don’t want to.
    To be Called by Her. I live for Her, I die for Her. Alone not am I from Her.
  8. Tell us one thing you’re the most proud of and why?
    I live.  I eat, I live.  Many days living was a trial.