The Magnetic Magnus Bane (Scenes from CLOCKWORK PRINCE)

Self became curious about The Infernal Devices fan fiction so she spent a little time exploring it today.

It turns out that 90% is about the Warlock Magnus Bane.

In addition, and this was quite surprising to self, the fan fiction for TID is overwhelmingly man/man. And the number of works featuring three-somes (Will/Tessa/Jem) outnumber those featuring Will/Tessa, or what followers of TID refer to as WESSA (Fans of a Jem/Tessa pairing identify as JESSA). Granted, this is probably more information than dear blog readers care to know, but self finds the difference with The Hunger Games fan fiction completely fascinating. In Hunger Games fan fiction, Everlark dominates. Which means: Katniss/Peeta. Which means the relationship is M/F.

Will Herondale IS very pretty, though. Nearly set off a riot at the Vampire Ball in Clockwork Angel, as self has said at least 10x, in 10 different posts! (When is this going to become a movie? She knows The Mortal Instruments series is going to be a television show, but she thinks TID deserves the large-screen treatment. Most definitely)

Anyhoo, Magnus Bane has a more prominent role in Clockwork Prince than he did in Clockwork Angel because Will Herondale keeps showing up at his house. And most of the time, Will is dripping wet (having walked in the rain — naturally) and in some kind of emotional funk over the curse that was laid on him back in Wales when he was 12, which means he can never let any one love him because they will die, which sucks because he’s fallen in love with Tessa who also happens to be falling in love with Jem.

SPOILER ALERT OF COURSE SPOILER ALERT

On p. 145 of Clockwork Prince, Will shows up at Magnus’s, and Will explains the demon curse hanging over his head, and why he’s told no one else, only Magnus, because “a story like that might engender pity, pity could become attachment, and then . . . ”

Magnus raised his eyebrows. “Are you not concerned about me?”

And a shocked Will says, “That you might love me?”

And then you can hear a pin drop but never fear, Magnus does not make a pass at Will Herondale. At least, not right at that moment.

160 pages later (Dear blog readers have no idea how fast self can read when she puts her mind to it), Will is asleep on a couch in Magnus’s sitting room. Never fear, he’s still *untouched* by Magnus, lol. Magnus has fallen asleep in an armchair in front of the fire, and Will is sleeping on the couch. Enter Camille! She who is known as THE MOST BEAUTIFUL AND ALLURING VAMPIRE EVER!

“Magnus,” quoth Camille. “Did you miss me?”

And Magnus stammers out something like, “I didn’t know you were coming, Camille!”

And Camille casts a very telling glance at Will asleep on the sofa and says, “Clearly.”

Here’s the rest of that scene:

Gliding behind the sofa, she leaned over the back, looking down into Will’s face. “Will Herondale,” she said. “He is lovely, isn’t he? Is he your newest amusement?”

Instead of answering, Magnus crossed his long legs in front of him. “Where have you been?”

Camille leaned forward farther; if she had had breath, it would have stirred the curling dark hair on Will’s forehead. “Can I kiss him?”

CLOCKWORK PRINCE, p. 318

CLOCKWORK PRINCE, p. 318

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

What? What? What? NOOOOOOOO!

SPOILERS GALORE AS PER USUAL

p. 293 of Clockwork Prince:

Tessa and Will have another stake-out. This time, instead of a Vampire Ball, it’s a Demon’s Ball. Not as interesting, but hey, this is the ball at which beautiful Will Herondale keeps saying Tessa’s name, over and over, because “I love your name. I love the sound of it.” It also helps that she’s wearing a very tight corset because her dress belonged to Jessamine, that incorrigible, shameless, flirt, and a corset makes even the most flat-chested woman look curvaceous.

So they’re finally alone on a balcony, and —

“So there you two are,” comes a voice.

DRAAAAAT! That Warlock Magnus Bane has followed them!

The two whirl away from each other in shame, and Magnus says, “Let me guess. You had the lemonade.”

!!!##@@!!!

The lemonade “had a bit of warlock powder mixed into it,” says Magnus. “The kind that lowers your inhibitions.”

Damn you, Magnus Bane! Damn you to Warlock Hell or wherever!

Stay tuned.

Annoyed With Tessa Gray, A Disquisition on Teeth

Self is so annoyed with Tessa Gray.

Will Herondale comes into her room at night, wakes her from a nightmare, bends down to kiss her, and at the last minute she turns her head so that his kiss lands on her cheek.

##@@!!!!

Dear blog readers, self can’t, she can’t even.

Just for that, she’ll have to leave Clockwork Prince for a while and turn to Courtney Humphries and a fascinating disquisition on teeth (called, what else, Teeth) in the latest issue (Spring 2015) of Bluestem magazine.

Trigger Warning: Extremely Detailed Descriptions of a Dental Filling

My teeth have been jammed full of an embarrassing number of fillings . . .

(One moment: Fellow Writing Studio writer has just emerged from across the hall, and would you believe in 3 weeks self has never once had an adequate conversation with this person, whose name is Dan, who lives in Tijuana and has won a Canadian National Magazine Award for his writing about HIV-infection and the drug trade in Mexico. And she practically trips over her sneakers and has to call out at the top of her voice — he walks really fast! Self swears she heard him emerge just two seconds ago — WHERE IS THAT ARTICLE ON HIV-INFECTION IN TIJUANA CAN I READ IT. To be continued)

. . . over the years, and each one felt like a failure in my duty as a caretaker. Other body parts we can be lax about. Scraped knees heal, broken arms knit. Even a metabolism fallen into sloth can be rescued with exercise and good food. But teeth are monuments that we must painstakingly clean and protect, or lose them forever. My mother has had various crowns put in, and I fear that I will too someday, as she always warns me that our family has soft teeth. Just the phrase “soft teeth” is foreboding — it implies a fatal weakness in parts that are supposed to be strongest, a lack of genetic fitness that could doom me to a toothless fate.

Alas, this disquisition on teeth, too, has to end on somewhat of a cliff-y. Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Beginning CLOCKWORK PRINCE: More Reasons to Love Cassandra Clare

Because she made Will Herondale, a character in The Infernal Devices trilogy.

Quotes fall so trippingly from Will’s tongue. She particularly loves when Jessamine is present, for the two Shadowhunters are constantly squabbling:

They go at it again on pp. 30 -31 of Clockwork Prince (She finished Clockwork Angel in the wee hours this morning)

. . . Jessamine shot Will a poisonous look. “If you think I don’t have the experience to help, then why is she here?” She indicated Tessa. “I don’t mean to be rude, but do you think she can tell a binding spell from a summoning one?” She looked at Tessa. “Well, can you? And for that matter, Will, you pay so little attention at lessons, can you tell a binding spell from a soufflé recipe?”

Will leaned back in his chair and said dreamily, “I am but mad north-northwest; when the wind is southerly I know a hawk from a handsaw.”

“Jessamine, Tessa has kindly offered to help, and we need all the eyes we can get right now,” said Jem severely. “Will, don’t quote Hamlet. Henry . . . ” he cleared his throat. “HENRY.”

SPOILER ALERT

For all her faults, Jessamine is pretty fierce. She never abandoned Tessa during the climactic fight to defend the Institute from the clockwork automatons who invaded it at the end of Clockwork Angel. And this in spite of the fact that her parasol was demolished, ruined beyond repair, lol.

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

CLOCKWORK ANGEL, p. 387

SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT SPOILER ALERT

It was cold today in Banff. Self feels like she is coming down with a serious head cold. Never mind! She has Cassandra Clare to keep her company. Everlasting gratitude to her niece Karina for recommending The Infernal Devices trilogy. Holy holy moly. Only two words fill her vocabulary at this moment:

WILL. HERONDALE.

Cassandra Clare, you are genius.

On p. 387, it is the night of the full moon and the Clave has gone to strike the vampires led by de Quincey (who formed an uncommon attachment to Will’s neck when he was pretending to be a subjugate at the party at which Tessa Gray was channeling a vampire named Charlotte and if that is too much for you just buy the book for heaven’s sake!)

Will and Jem, a flighty girl named Jessamine, two servant girls and Tessa Gray are left alone in the Institute. Suddenly, they receive a very unexpected visit from a mundane named Mortmain (and every nerve in self’s body is screaming, Don’t you put any credence in what this shifty mundane tells you, Will Herondale!)

The following conversation ensues:

Will’s blue eyes were dark and thoughtful. “Thank you for the information,” he said, “but de Quincey will soon be no more of a threat to us, or his mechanical monsters, either.”

Mortmain’s eyes widened. “Is the Clave to move against the Magister? Tonight?”

“Goodness,” said Will. “You really do know all the terms, don’t you. It’s very disconcerting in a mundane.” He smiled pleasantly.

So blah blah blah ensues and Will and Jem decide  to go check out Mortmain’s story. Tessa Gray wants to accompany them but Will tells her she can’t. At which point the following conversation ensues:

She turned her gaze back to Will. “But what about Boadicea?”

For a moment she thought he’d forgotten what he’d said to her in the library. Then the glimmer of a smile tugged at the corner of his mouth, as if he’d tried to fight it and couldn’t. “You will be Boadicea someday, Tessa,” he said, “but not tonight.”

And then, chapter ends on a cliff-y!

And the next chapter begins with a quote from Robert Browning, his poem “The Lost Leader”:

Blot out his name, then, record one lost soul more
One task more declin’d, one more footpath untrod,
One more devil’s triumph and sorrow for angels

Dying, dying, dying.

Stay tuned.

Force of Nature 3: Elk Sightings Near Lloyd Hall plus Robert Falcon Scott’s Diary

Self is still in the Canadian Rockies.

The cold isn’t so bad, but it’s the unpredictability, the sheer unpredictability of the weather, that gets to self.

The weather pattern this time of year in the Rockies appears to be thus:

Cold/Wet/Snow/Hot/Chilly/Breezy/Hot/Cold/Wet

All in the same day.

This afternoon, self essay-ed one short walk out, with a group led by geologist Jim Olver, and wouldn’t you know, the day that had been dry as a whistle began to get wet. And wetter. And wetter. The wet building in increments. So it was not a sudden torrent, but a tickle. A reminder. Of the cold that is growing in self’s head.

She said to herself: I’ll be damned if I’m the first person to chicken out because of this rain! I’m staying outside here (despite bare-headed), come hell or high water! Because I am tough! Tough! Tough! I am the woman who endured electricity failure in the month of January in Dharamsala. I had no coat. My teeth were chattering. Do dear blog readers know what chattering teeth sound like? Self was sure she was cracking all her molars.

Today, self was wearing a turtleneck. And a jacket. And jeans. And sturdy sneakers. And knit fingerless gloves. But damn, her hair was getting wet.

This Elk was ambling around in between Lloyd Hall and the Bentley Chamber Music Studio.

This Elk was ambling around in between Lloyd Hall and the Bentley Chamber Music Studio.

And then came ambling along two elk (Is self beginning to sound very Yoda-ish, dear blog readers?), and then someone was asking if self was going for dinner with the Writing Studio group, who were heading downtown, and self wanted to say, seriously? Do you see how wet self’s hair is at this very moment? Need I remind you that my country of origin is the Philippines? Where it is NEVER cold? Even when rainy? And that self’s current abode is listed as CALIFORNIA?

But, anyhoo, ELK SIGHTING! Near LLOYD HALL!

Finally, she gets to post something somewhat related to FORCE OF NATURE, this weeks’s WordPress Photo Challenge!

Just Outside Bentley Chamber Music Studio, Today

Just Outside Bentley Chamber Music Studio, Today

In order to feel less peck-ish, self is reading published excerpts from Robert Falcon Scott’s diary, which he kept all the way till the very end, when he and his party of four other men died in a raging blizzard, just 11 miles from the shelter of base camp. Scott reached the South Pole only to find the Norwegian flag already planted, by Roald Amundsen. Then he and his men had to make the arduous slog back, knowing that they were beaten. Scott’s last conscious act was to make a diary entry. (It suddenly occurs to self that 11 miles is no mere walk in the park. Back in California, self would be hard put to walk 2 miles on a daily basis. And just imagine having to negotiate 11 miles in a blizzard! And weighed down with piles and piles of clothing! Must have felt like swimming through a sea of muck!)

The Canadian Rockies, seen from the 6th floor of Lloyd Hall, the residence of all the Writing Studio participants, including self

The Canadian Rockies, seen from the 6th floor of Lloyd Hall, the residence of all the Writing Studio participants, including self

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

WIP: Fan Fiction and a Novel

Self has two fan fiction WIPs at the moment, and thankfully she now has a beta (Pseud: Cielo).

But she is seriously behind with her updates. Ever since she got to Canada, she’s had very little time.

Nevertheless, she refuses to abandon her fan fiction writing. She decides to consult her beta Cielo, who tells self: “Katniss must avoid small talk because that may ignite emotions she simply cannot handle.” Moreover: “Katniss must refuse all offers of help from Peeta and his wife.” (Yes, Peeta is married to someone else. Angst is self’s particular specialty) WOW! You see how brilliant self’s beta is???

She’s also working on a novel-in-progress, a historical novel set in 18th century Spain (From dystopian worlds of the future to 18th century Spain is not really such a big leap. Self finds she can write/switch easily from one to the other. Because, let’s face it, nothing is more speculative to a modern reader than the 18th century. Or the 17th century. Or the 16th century. Or, or . . .  well, you get the picture, dear blog reader.)

Because she wants her historical novel to have tons of verisimilitude, she’s reading up on fantastic historical voyages. Luckily, The Banff Centre has a very helpful library only a five-minute walk from her room.

Finally, she’s reading Mark Twain, which is helping her keep her sense of humor well oiled.

One thing she’s observed about Twain in Explorations to the Equator is that he is an indefatigable people person. He never holes up in his cabin during his cruise. Never. Self so admires Twain’s energy and gregariousness.

Because he is always up and about, Twain collects a number of interesting tidbits about his fellow passengers. Yes indeed, he is as addicted to gossip as the next person.

One night, Twain and his fellow cruise-mates play a game. Someone will relate a story, but leave out the ending. The other players devise possible endings, the best one is chosen by vote, and then the person whose story is being told reveals what the real ending is.

One particular story trumps all because, it turns out, the story was never finished. Before he could get to the end of the tale, the story-teller was interrupted.

Everyone tries to come up with a plausible ending, but no one succeeds. Twain decides that it’s because “the story’s strength is in its middle, and . . . there is apparently no way to transfer it to the close, where of course it ought to be.”

Twain ends up re-telling the story for the reader, and it is so, so long that self cannot figure out the point. Plus the anecdote is told in text that is half the size of the main narrative, and self can hardly read it. Honestly, she doesn’t know how Twain remembered so much of this particular story. As far as she can tell, it’s about a man named John Brown, who is 31 and “good, gentle, bashful, etc.” He is “made entirely out of good impulses and bashfulness” (Digression: Two nights ago, self and the other writers were sitting in a circle in the Writers Lounge. One writer was late, and self pulled a chair out for her so she could join the circle. And the woman said: “Oh, thank you! Thank you for being so kind and thoughtful! Not that it’s going to do you any good.” At which statement self nearly bust a gut from laughing) Anyhoo, Brown is on his way to visit his lady love, when his hat gets blown off his head and lands in the river. And he determines he simply cannot show up at his sweetheart’s without his hat. So he decides to doff all his clothes and jump into the river to retrieve the hat. In the meantime, his horse runs off with his clothes, so the man is stranded naked on a riverbank. And —

Darn! How much of this small print can she decipher! It’s madness! Sheer madness!

Stay tuned.

Still Reading This

The houseboy Sebastian came out of the kitchen and said, “Good morning, Skeep. The barber is coming.”

“When?”

“He’s coming now.”

“Where is he?”

“He’s in the kitchen. You want breakfast first? You want egg?”

“Just coffee, please.”

“You want bacon and egg?”

“Can you stand it if I just have coffee?”

“What kind of egg? Over easy.”

“Bring it on, bring it on.”

*     *     *     *     *

pp. 35 – 36, Tree of Smoke: novel by Denis Johnson, set during The Vietnam War.  The troops go for R & R in the Philippines. It’s not pretty. Stay tuned.

Wall 3: New York City

From the WordPress Daily Post site:

Walls are “where stories are read, voices are heard, ideas are shared.”

Below are a few pictures of walls from self’s peregrinations today, St. Patrick’s Day, in the great, ever-inspiring city of New York.

It was a blustery, chilly day. Self overheard this conversation, while sitting on the steps of the Metropolitan having a lunch of shish kebab and lemonade from one of the truck vendors on Fifth (And it was a pretty good shish kebab!)

Young Woman (wearing a dress, leggings, boots, and an absolutely radiant smile): “I just flashed everyone.”

Friend (seated behind self on the steps): “I know. It’s such a fucking windy day. Love the outfit, though.”

Chinese Courtyard, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City

Chinese Courtyard, Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York City

St. Patrick's Day Parade Wall of Flags! Viewed from the steps of the Metropolitan Museum

St. Patrick’s Day Parade Wall of Flags! Viewed from the steps of the Metropolitan Museum

Wall of People? We're all waiting for the parade!

Wall of People? We’re all waiting for the parade!

Stay tuned, dear blog readers. Stay tuned.

Further From the Latest Chapter of Self’s Hunger Games Fan Fiction

Self loves fan fiction. Especially, right now, Katniss Everdeen, Demon Hunter. Yaaaas!

Katniss is 500 years old (but, obviously, doesn’t look it). She’s on a quest to kill every last demon on the face of the Earth.

Peeta is a Demon. Ooops!

Katniss has a magic bow that vibrates when Demons are near. But with Peeta, it never vibrates. Never. So, several times, he’s slipped through Katniss’s fingers. She chases after him, over the rooftops of Manhattan. Then she ends up in Hoboken, New Jersey, where . . . there is the best Cuban restaurant in the whole United States, lol. Self is going there, if she can just manage to get on the correct PATH train.

In the meantime, here is a further scene from the latest chapter of self’s Hunger Games fan fiction. She loves this chapter so much, she can’t bear to write anything else. It’s been two weeks, what can she say? She used Haruki Murakami as her inspiration.

“Enough!” Snow says. “I know all about the rebellion Mr. Odair’s been planning. For years, it seems. And since you and he are the best of friends, I thought most likely you were in on it, eh? He wouldn’t leave you dangling in the dark all this time, would he? Especially after he found out how badly you wanted to return to your family business — that preposterous bakery in 12! Like I’d fall for that stupid drama. You underestimate me, my dear Victor.”

“There’s nothing wrong with being a baker. You make it sound like it’s some sort of — disease,” Peeta says.

“Ha! Ever the silver tongue,” Snow barks. “From you, I would expect nothing less. Let me see: between your not knowing and your knowing, I’m rather inclined towards the latter.”

Peeta swallows. “Finnick’s a friend. Nothing more.”

“Pardon me if I find that rather hard to believe,” Snow says.

“He’s all talk, if you know what I mean,” Peeta says. “There was no rebellion.”

Stay tuned, dear blog readers.

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