Friday, January 31, 2014

Raising Kain: Diseased God Chapter Five

Chapter Five

Kain woke up, still exhausted from the five day stint of screaming his head off, a grumbling stomach roused him from his slumber though. He was surprised for the first few moment of consciousness, surprised he was still alive. The surprise wore off quickly, though, as soon as he saw Gaia.

She sat dozing against a large stone, and a small stream trickled down beside them, gurgling in concert with Gaia’s deep breathing. He looked into the stream, watching white water bounce back off the rocks, and staring at the tiny minnows swimming to and fro like they were small seafood platters.

Kain caught his reflection in the starlit water and for the second time since waking his eyes widened in surprise. As he sat on the sandy bank, he realized it was a little boy looking back at him from his rippled reflection, instead of his fierce draconic features.

She must have force converted me back, he thought. He had heard of force conversions taking place before, but never understood how they could work. The decision to change from one form to another was an entirely conscious, and sometimes unconscious, decision. It took an act of personal will power to do or stop at anytime. Any person who could start a forced conversion must be able to reach into the mind of the person they are trying to transform.

Kain decided he would keep his mental guard up at all times, especially around Gaia. He didn’t want her to be able to pluck any thought out of his head at any moment.

Kain looked back toward Gaia, and found there was now a fire burning between the two of them. Just a small fire for camping and roasting a little bit of meat and fruit, nothing like the fires he had seen roaring in the palace’s kitchens, and equally dwarfed by the fires he had once seen burning in the Dwarven forges. His father had taken him down there once, but Kain couldn’t remember what for, or even what the dwarves themselves looked like. All he remembered of it now was the blazing towering inferno and the molten metals poured into them.

No, this fire was nothing like that.

A wiff of something sweet with a light pinch of cinnamon jerked Kain’s attention from the fire itself to what was cooking overtop of it. The smell was that of roasting meat, and he found there were two spits with oddly shaped, skinned animals jammed down onto them.

His stomach groaned at the sight and smell of food so near, but his mind whirled in a detached fashion. Just a moment ago, when he had noticed the fire, there had been nothing roasting overtop of it, and before that, when he woke up, there had been no fire between him and Gaia.

“Yes, little boy,” Gaia said, her eyes still closed. “I made the fire and the food appear. Eat your fill.”

“I thought I couldn’t have everything I wanted?” Kain asked, not trusting his supposed tutor.

“It would not serve my purposes to have you starve to death out here in the woods, now would it?” Gaia answered with a question of her own. “And, besides, you seemed to function well enough to attack me on only one meal in the last five days. So, until you learn how to hunt for yourself, I will feed you once every five days.”

“Why’re you doing this?” Kain asked.

“Because you are to be my student,” Gaia said. “We have already started on lesson number one. Eat your fill and we will continue.”

Kain looked back out into the starry night sky that hung over them like an elaborate tapestry.

The moon was out tonight, a waxing gibbous, the phase next to the full moon, the three nights of his mother’s greatest powers here on the planet. Kain wondered if Celita was concentrating enough on her physical aspect to see through it, he wondered if she would be able to look down at him and see he needed her and father. Kain doubted it.

The sunset haired boy turned back to Gaia, and moved to sit down by the fire. He plucked one of the spits up from the rock it leaned against and dug in.

Right now, he didn’t care what type of meat it was; his mouth would have watered for it the same had Gaia told him it was rat (somewhere deep inside his mind he figured it was anyway). She didn’t tell him that though. Instead, she came to sit beside the fire.

She manifested a cup, had it fill itself in the spring, and set itself down in front of Kain. Between mouthfuls of meat he would take a drink, but the level of the cup never seemed to change. The same thing went for the food.

When Gaia said “eat your fill,” she obviously understood he would need more than two scrawny little animals to fill him up. Instead, every time he set the spit down, he found there were still two critters happily roasting over the fire, just waiting for him to bite into them.

“So,” Kain said, his voice unsure of whether he really wanted to know the answer to the question he was about to ask. “Why did you take me from my mom and dad?”

“It’s complicated, little one,” Gaia said. Her tone of voice had been the same silk like tone she used before. “But, I’m going to try to explain it to you as simply as I can. And, don’t think I’m telling you because you asked. I’m going to tell you because I think you have a right to know even though you’re just as bound by the situation as I am.

“Eons ago, long before you were born, maybe it was before Atlantis was founded, but I’m not sure about that. Anyway, a man called The Writer called the Four Aspects of Life together; when we all came to him, he told us our powers would wane as we existed, and that, eventually, we would no longer be able to fulfill the duties we were to perform as Aspects. In short, our powers as the Aspects would run dry, and we would be forced to retire to life as gods and goddesses of the things we once represented. Though, even as deities we would remain tremendously powerful, but not able to continue doing as we had since time immemorial. So, The Writer had come up with a solution…”

“Who’s the writer?” Kain asked.

“Kain please don’t interrupt me again.” She didn’t look at him as she said it, but Kain could tell his interruption had angered her, though only slightly. “But, The Writer is a very powerful and ancient being. There is even some debate that he, and those of his kind, are even older than the Two Pillars of Existence, but that is not pertinent to what we’re talking about right now.

“So, where was I…? Right, The Writer had come up with a solution. What he decided was that since we would eventually become incapable of performing our duties as the Aspects and if we were incapable of performing those duties, the world as we know it would cease to exist. It would be necessary for someone to replace us. He decided the best people to train our replacements would be us, and then he set about deciding who would be our apprentices.”

Kain fidgeted as Gaia talked. Part of him wanted to try to escape while she sat reminiscing about times long past. The rest of him, though, was held enraptured both by the story and by her voice. Most of him also wanted to know: Why him?

“We were given no part of this decision,” Gaia said, continuing without showing any sign of irritation at Kain’s fidgeting. “It was a cruel and odd thing for him to do to us. Most of us had been in existence for millennia, and even though he was incalculably older than us, we didn’t like it when anybody decided what we should do, or how we should go about doing it.

“He sat there in his chair, turning pages in his book, barely breathing, and making all of us want to strike out at him. Believe it or not, none of us had much patience at that time, and now only Celita and Sola have essentially the same amount of patience we had then. Finally, he spoke eight names out of his aged tome. Four of them were ours, and four of them our successors. He said our names one at a time, and in between each of us, he inserted the name of our successors. When he said my name, he told me you were my successor, and out of all of those chosen to succeed us, he told me you would be the most important, and the most difficult.”

Gaia smiled as she finished. It was a playful smile, and Kain smiled right back at her, his mouth full of half chewed meat.

“Now, do you understand why I had to take you from Celita and Ouranus?” Gaia asked.

“No,” Kain said swallowing his last bite, and setting down the spit. “Why did you let a crusty old guy like the writer tell you what to do, and why did you listen?”

Gaia broke into a fit of uncontrollable laughter. It went on for several minutes. She managed to bring herself under control enough to look at Kain, and give him a half-sneer, half-genuine smile. “Your parents have obviously taught you absolutely nothing about the way our world works, have they?”

Kain gave her an odd look, he wondered if she meant to ask him such an absurd question. Of course, they had taught him how the world they lived in worked. Atlantis was at the top, and those who ruled Atlantis could do whatever they wanted. There was nothing and no one who could tell any Atlantean ruler what to do, and they certainly couldn’t tell his father it was necessary for Gaia to take him away from his family.

One other thing bugged Kain, though; it was something the he had caught while eavesdropping on his mother and Gaia a year or two before.

“What did my mother mean when she said your last student died during training?” Kain asked.

“You heard that?” Gaia said. She sighed, and didn’t let Kain answer. “My last student made a mistake, and I made even more. He went up against a foe that was far beyond him, and that foe destroyed what he was. He didn’t die per say, but he was no longer my student, and no longer the person he was when I began training him.”

“Well, little one,” Gaia said, stopping Kain from asking any further questions. “You are going to need to get some sleep, you’ve got a big day ahead of you, and I hope you ate your fill. What I said earlier stands, you won’t eat for five more days until you learn to hunt for yourself.”

“But, I’m not sleepy.” Kain managed to say before Gaia brushed her hand across the small boy’s temple. As soon as she removed her hand a heavy drowsy feeling overcame Kain, and it was just a few short seconds before he fell into the vast abyss of sleep.

Copyright Ryan M. Smith 2014


I got another topic from Mel for today. I like it that way, personally. I find it rather entertaining. Not that I’m not coming up with my own topics, but rather not being able to prepare anything for the topic before I name it. Cupcake gives me the subject, and I get to writing. In a way it’s easier to write like that.

And, for today’s topic Mel might as well have asked me who my favorite superhero is.

There’s only one idea, one image that pops into my head when I hear the word cupcake. It’s not a picture of a little pastry with too much icing on top. No, it’s a picture of my beautiful wife.

I forget when I started calling her Cupcake and I forget why, but it’s stuck with me forever after. She’ll always be my Cupcake. As for answering the “who’s my favorite superhero” question, she’s the answer to that. Cupcake is my favorite superhero. No comic book character ever has held a candle to her might.

She’s my shoulder to cry on.

My flashlight in the dark.

She’s the strength that keeps me standing.

I can honestly say that I’m still drawing breath today because of her.

Something broke inside me, and she’s helping put the pieces back together, and I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to repay her for that. I can’t even begin to articulate what she means to me. It’s too much for words, for drawing, too much for any form of art to describe. The closest I could to it is her being my favorite superhero.

If I could (drawing is on my list of things to learn how to do) I would draw a picture of her. In it she’d be standing up on a building ledge, in a purple one piece… Okay, more along the lines of what Black Widow was wearing in The Avengers, but she’d have a little symbol over her heart. In it would be a cupcake, with purple frosting instead of pink, she doesn’t like the color pink, and it would have a little cherry on top of it. It would be a yellow background, a kind of pastel yellow, not the same kind of yellow Robin uses in his symbol. On the back of her jacket the symbol would be repeated, only a lot larger. And, it would have writing around it:

Cupcake came to town to kick your ass.

And, she wouldn’t be wearing a mask. Why? Because she doesn’t need one, and masks don’t fit her personality at all, with her everything is right out in the open. And, she’s a Hatfield; she doesn’t get mad… just even.

She’d also be a walking armory, what with all the knives and daggers and throwing starts, but there would be no guns. Just like her attitude towards pink, my Cupcake doesn’t like guns.

Crossbows are a completely different story, however.

A little target practice with one, and she’d give Darrell of The Walking Dead a run for his money, at least according to her dice rolls.

Anyway, yes, I need to learn how to draw and I need to learn how to code. Both of them take time and practice, and I’m impatient… Damnit.


I’ll talk to you kids later.


PS: Cupcake, I love you!!!

Thursday, January 30, 2014

Legend of Zelda

First off, I want to say that the first thing to come to mind when I hear those words are the theme to the game. I would try to recreate the melody here, but that would be ineffective since this is a text medium instead of an audio or visual medium. Therefore I shall use Youtube to refresh your memory.

And, for shits and giggles, here’s the version with lyrics.

Now, we all know what musical ditty I’m talking about and I’ve probably managed to get at least one of them stuck in your head. I consider my job well done on that part.

But, alas, the ditty is not what the topic of today’s post is going to be about. I’ve had a lot of serious crap on my mind today, and I asked Mel for a topic that wasn’t. Serious that is. And, I’m getting stuck. Lol. I don’t actually know what to say about the Legend of Zelda.

Well, first off, it’s not about humans. There’s not a single character (in most of the games I believe) that is human. There might be some in Majora’s Mask, but I can’t remember right now. Instead of humans the game is about Hylians, an elven subrace. Yes, boys and girls, Link is in some way related to Legolas. I’m not sure if that’s here or there, but yes, they’re elves.

This means they have a +2 to dexterity and a -2 to constitution. And, since Link seems to be very adaptable (we’ll consider that a racial feature) I’ll go ahead and say that Hylian Elves get an additional feat at first level. And, I would put their favored class as Ranger, instead of the elves typical choice of wizardry.

Yes, somehow this became a discussion about Link and Hylians being Dungeons and Dragons characters. Or rather how they would fit into the rules of Dungeons and Dragons, and Pathfinder by extension.

I’ve been doing that a lot lately. Applying D&D rules and stats to things that actually have very little to do with the game.

Take Maleficent as an example: Russell and I went back and forth for an hour or two about how she would fit into D&D. I think we finally settled on her being a black dragon with levels in the Druid class that assumes the shape of a fey or sylvan woman (a fairy in other words). And, I think that’s a pretty fair run, given what powers she showed in the classic Sleeping Beauty movie, and the upcoming movie Maleficent trailers. (Most people would say she’s a sorcerer, but nah. I’m pretty sure she’s a druid. Though she might be a druid that’s taken levels in sorcerer to expand her repertoire of malefic magic.)

Then a couple of months ago a friend and I were trying to make stats up for the Headless Horseman for a Halloween themed adventure.

And, all of that has been in good fun. :D

So, yes, Link is a Hylian Elf Ranger who carries a +5 Reflective Shield and a +3 Holy Avenger.

Later Kids.



Wednesday, January 29, 2014


I didn’t have my Cupcake (Mel) here today to give me a random topic. Thus I was distraught, and turned to the internet for help. I Googled a random word generator and found I played around with it for a little while, laughing at the sentences and paragraphs it puts together. Some make sense, others don’t, it’s hours of entertainment. But, then I got down to it. I clicked for a single word, the word that would become my topic for my days blog post and…


What the hell am I going to say about that?

I mean, I had to look the word up. I knew what controversy implied, but due to the media throwing it around like it’s confetti I wasn’t sure. Controversy is a disagreement, usually a public disagreement. It’d be like me bingeing on Reese Cups and my wife deciding to sue The Hershey Company over it. That would be a controversy; it would be a comical one, but a controversy none the less.

Then you have your controversial topics: religion, abortion, politics, sexual orientation, and I’m sure I’m missing a few in there, but you get my point. Now, most of those won’t be discussed here, mainly because I don’t give a flying f*** about them. Religion will come up, but usually in a discussion of mythology (or subject matter, like in Raising Kain). So, I don’t see my blog creating any major controversy. I don’t see my writing doing that either.

Is that a good thing or bad thing?

A little of both, I believe. Controversy can be good publicity. Look at GQ and A&E over the whole Phil Robertson incident. That generated a hell of a lot of attention, and it got people to tune in to see what was going on. People who might never have bought an issue of GQ picked it up just to read the article. Sales go through the roof, and, if the dice land the right way, so do subscriptions.

Another example is The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown. Even though it states quite clearly at the beginning of the book that it’s a work of fiction, people were up in arms about it. Mary Magdalene = The Holy Grail? Christ’s bloodline survives through to this day? Some other major pot boiler plot point that I can’t remember right now. It’s sales were astronomical, and at one point it looked like it might become the second bestselling book of all time (number one is the Bible, if you didn’t know). The controversy around that book created such hype it elevated Dan Brown to literary god status, even though The Da Vinci Code is little more than  formulaic whodunit novel.

I’m not saying it’s a bad book. It’s just not worth the hype.

But, it makes me think. Maybe I should be a little more controversial here and there. Might get me little bit more attention.

I should go pick a fight with a celebrity on Twitter. That might be entertaining as hell.

Later kids.



Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Lazy Day

Well, today I have been entirely unproductive. Lol. It is one o’clock at the time of this writing (so technically, it’s actually being written on the day it’s being published) and I have had my blog done hours before bed time typically. But, today I didn’t. Today, I kicked back and relaxed, enjoyed some music, a little booze, and what might as well have been a four hour nap. Lol. I really sat in my chair for that long, doing nothing at all. And, my god for once it was glorious.

I don’t like it though. Not all the way.

I did have plans for the day, that didn’t get done because of my lazy streak. But, those plans can be accomplished tomorrow as easily as they could have been done today. This is not me justifying procrastination; no this is me stating that my plans don’t have a super set deadline. Today, in fact, is the first day since I started with my goals that I let any of them goes past the point I where I was supposed to do them. I’ll still get the majority of them done (the two hours of writing I had planed has kind of been nixed, I don’t want to stay up till four in the morning, then have to get up to take Erik to work at 7ish, wouldn’t be healthy driving time).

As for what is there to talk about?

A couple of things I suppose.

First, Maleficent is going to be one of the most bad ass movies ever to premier, and yes, it’s a Disney movie. It premiers in May, but I want it to come out now… I get chills each time I watch the trailer. Sleeping Beauty has been my all time favorite fairy tale, and now my all time favorite villain is taking her place in the spotlight. She will take it, using all the powers of Hell!!! (I love you momma :)

Second, has put out a call for submissions. They accept submissions year round, but it’s generally this time of year that they really bring your attention to it. And, I think I’m going to try and get something published. I’ve got a concept I think will be funny, and it might match their styling, but I’m not sure yet…. No, I’m not giving the idea away. :P This idea is all mine.

Third… I need to learn how to draw… I ask people to draw things for me, and they say sure, give me some time… and then I never hear back from them. And, I’m like “oh, I’m not going to bother them, they might be busy with something else” instead of doing what I asked them too. And, if I could just draw it myself I wouldn’t have a problem. However, if there is an artist among you that wishes to draw creatures and monsters for me at a cheap rate (read free) then I would love to hear from you down in the comments section.

Plus I have to learn to draw. I played with a random animal generator and I got the animals, a bull and a praying mantis. Now I need to learn how to draw, how to draw those creatures, and then draw a picture of them combined in some horrific way. And, just to make things fun for my DnD group, I’m going to come up with stats for that ugly beastie and see what they think of it. It might wind of up looking something like this:

Only it’ll be a little more along the lines of a bull and a praying mantis. Mainly because I don’t want to claim someone else’s work as my own. I dunno.

Anywho… I’m about to drop into bed, and I’m nowhere near it. So, I shall talk at you kids later.



Monday, January 27, 2014


The color blue.

The sky is blue.

Psychologically speaking, blue is a relaxing calming color. But, the phrase “why so blue?” implies depression.

Melanie’s school colors are blue and black (a kind of sky blue) and I wouldn’t be surprised if the football players were black and blue after game.

My head isn’t screwed on straight today. But, I like the little tilt to my view. It makes life seem just a little bit better. It makes the weight on my back just little lighter. And, to be frank, if that screw ever went in straight, I wouldn’t be half the fun I am now. Lol. J

As for other things; Happy Birthday to Dungeons and Dragons, if I had realized this little fact yesterday, I would have set the game date for today. It would have made things a little bit more fun, and I’m sorry to say that Bob Shreve wouldn’t be here to play with us today. I betcha he’s rolling 20s up in heaven, playing  game DMed by J. R. R. Tolkien, and sitting right next to Gary Gygax. I miss you Bob.

But, that topic’s getting a little too blue for me, so we’ll try to find something else to chat about.

I want to write poem, but I’m very bad at that. Though, I wonder if it’s bad that I tried to turn that last sentence into the beginning of a sonnet (the only poem I really understand how to write). I would have gone on with it too, but I couldn’t think of a word that rhymes with poem. And, now I believe I’m going to go mad if I don’t think of something.

Hold on…


So, I found bunch of words that rhyme with poem. And, the strange thing is, words that I didn’t think would rhyme with I are considered rhymes. I don’t know though.

And, now my minds churning again, wanting to write that poem more and more. Hmm.

I want to write a poem
But, I’m very bad at that
It’s not often I carry a totem
But, then I really love my cat.

Today’s subject was the color blue
I didn’t know what to write about
So, my wife gave me little clue
Now I can speak my mind in a great loud shout!

I don’t do poetry very often
If you can’t tell from the random lines
That’s not something I want engraved on my coffin
I’d rather show it in my vines

Now my poems at an end
And, from now on I’ll call you friend.

Yeah, I’m definitely not cut out to be a poet. I think I shall gladly stick with my long form prose. I can write that out a little loudly.

I couldn’t help myself. Lol.

Anywho, I shall talk to you kids later.



Sunday, January 26, 2014


So, earlier today, I sat down to write my blog post. It was a post about yarn. Well, it was supposed to be a post about yarn. What it turned into is not something I want to go through again. So, we’ll go back to the original topic.

Yarn. What is it?

Google defines Yarn in two ways. First it says that yarn is a spun thread that is used in knitting, weaving, or sewing. And, second it describes yarn as a long or rambling implausible story. I agree with both statements.

In a way, I’ve been obsessed with yarn for the last few years. While I was still in college, (taking weaving classes at the time, I believe) I came up with the idea of working with yarn professionally. Basically running my own little internet store, where people could come and commission different types of yarn based products (so long as they didn’t involve knitting) and I would satisfy that commission to the best of my ability. I’m actually rather good at crocheting, and I can weave some… though it’s been a long time. And, it’s still something I think about doing.

Just a fun little on the side business where I make blue and black scarves for Mingo Central’s football games for just a tiny bit of profit. Or do a series of blankets/afghans/something big and sell them on ebay or what not. But, I’ve never done that. I think it’s because I’m not that dedicated to the idea of the yarn business. It’s just not something I see putting my whole life into.

But, in a way it is.

I want to write stories for a living. I want to look into my dreams and show the people the magic that hides right behind the clouds on the bright sunshiny day. I want to show them the terror in the bent broken tree with its shadow crawling across the courtyard… getting ever closer to your shoe… I wonder what would happen… (I just got chills. lol) And, now I want to keep going with that idea. Lol.

I want to write yarns. I want my stories, as improbable as they might be, I want to see them spread far and wide. I do want to dedicate my life to yarn. And, I guess today is as good a day as any to do it.

For the last 8 years my New Year’s Resolution has been the same thing. I want to get a book published. I want to get a book published. I want to get a book published. I’m going to stop wanting this year. I’m going to stop failing at that one little resolution. I’m going to be a published author by the end of 2014 if it kills me. I might not be making my money living off of what I write, but I’ll be damned if I’m not going to supplement my income in just that fashion.

And, this still isn’t the fun, lighthearted post I wanted it to be. It’s serious, and it’s one of those breaking point moments. They’ve come this far and no farther, and all that hubbub. (I think that’s from Lord of the Rings: The Two Towers… it might also be 300… not sure which.) The point I’m trying to make though, is that I am admitting I have a problem. I am not a published author. I want to be a published author. And, today is the day where I finally dedicate myself towards pushing for that goal. Today I shall stand in front of the great beast and cry YOU SHALL NOT PASS!!!

I hope some of Mel’s students are reading this. Because that’s exactly what she says about you :P Lol. Just kidding. She loves ya just as much as she loves me… and that’s saying something because I go out of my way to annoy the crap out of her.

My brain got lost somewhere in there. But, yes. This is a public declaration of my goals. My goal for the year of 2014, become a published author. I would like to say that’s my goal for the next three months, but I think it’s going to take a wee bit longer than that to get my book ready to go. So, I’ll start work on it as soon as I get off work tomorrow, and you’ll get a daily update of when it’s going to be ready. J

And… now I have to remind you that I’m also writing a D&D adventure, and that might take some precedence, since the group expects me to have new stuff for them to do every week. But, I will dedicate some of my time to my novel. I promise.

On that note, I’m going to say anywho, because I don’t think I used it anywhere else in the post, and I’m going to let you all go for the day.

Later kids.



Saturday, January 25, 2014

Random Topic #1

I don’t know what it is. Lol.

Today is one of those days where I need Mel’s brain to pick things out for me. But, she’s not here today. They cancelled school, but had a Code W (in Mingo County it’s a Code W, I don’t know what it is elsewhere) which means students aren’t going to be there, but teachers have to report. And, I don’t get it. Teachers are paid to teach, if there are no students there why do the teachers need to be there. It’s like having a full staff at McDonalds, but the stores closed and there’s not a customer in sight. It just doesn’t make sense. I dunno, it’s probably got something to do with them being on salary or some shit like that.

Also, my walk for the day was screwed up because of the Code W. Normally, I do laps around the elementary school, which is right beside my house. I do my laps when nobody’s there. Because of the Code W there were people there. Grump.

So, I had to take another route, which screwed with my normal shebang and messed up my pedometer reading because of all the snow I had to trudge through. I really need to start getting up early enough to get the mud room warmed up. Then I can use the treadmill for my walk. And, at the very least I could just do laps in there. I dunno.

And, now I’m running out of things to talk about. My brain and I aren’t getting along well at the moment.

Usually, by this point I’ve managed to find a way to include some Dungeons and Dragons reference in the post. Or I’ll swing the post around to being about D&D altogether, and I think we’re going to go that direction today too. But, we’re going to throw a little Minecraft in there as well.

I’m lazy, and I’ve been trying to figure out what my world looks like. I’ve looked online for map making software, specifically for gaming purposes, but most of it was expensive and I’m not sure if it was for gaming or not. So, I had no luck there.

Then I started playing Minecraft, and I realized that Minecraft is pretty much a random map generator. There are also addons/mods/whatever that give you a world map. I used Amidst, and I think I’ve got a pretty good idea of what my world looks like now.

Now, I’m just trying to figure out how the stories I’ve made up thus far and their locations fit in with the map. I’m not sure yet, but I’ll figure it out. I know that the world spawn is going to be the location of the world’s largest city, Priasez. And, I’ve more or less picked out a location for the current city the PCs are in (Netheretia). I’ve even gone so far as to “clear” out a space to build this particular city.

Netheretia is a city situated in the Underhaven (underground) which is why the hole goes so deep. That and I really like blowing things up. Though clearing out all the left over bits and pieces is hard; that and cleaning up the lava and other things. It’s time consuming… (And, the destruction pictured above is much more widespread then what the screen capture encompasses.)

Which is something I dislike. I’m lazy and I’m impatient. I don’t want to worry about all this clean up, I want my city done now! I don’t even want to build it myself. I want it to appear all on its own. Though that’s probably about as likely as a million dollars suddenly materializing in my bank account.

Anywho, that’s more than enough out of me. Later kids.



Friday, January 24, 2014

Raising Kain: Diseased God Chapter Four

Chapter One
Chapter Two
Chapter Three

Raising Kain: Diseased God
Chapter Four

Kain said good-bye to his mother. Celita swept him up into a great big hug, and began to weep into his hair. He didn’t understand why but he went with it.

He said good-bye to his father, and his father dropped down to Kain’s level. Ouranus didn’t drag him into a hug like his mother had just done; instead, Ouranus ruffled Kain’s sunset red hair, and kissed the crown of his son’s head. It was the most affectionate thing Ouranus had ever done for his son.

Kain didn’t understand, he thought he was just going to be off with Gaia for a few days. He reasoned it couldn’t be a very long trip, a few days at most, especially since Gaia told him he shouldn’t pack any of his things or have any of the palace servants come with him.

That had been a week ago today, and, in Kain’s opinion, things had changed for the worst in the last five days.

His tiny cup sized fist slammed into the ground. A puff of dust rose into the air, and Gaia sighed for another innumerable time. This is how it had been for the last one-hundred and twenty hours: Kain howling, shattering trees, incinerating bushes, transporting into and dropping huge boulders from the sky. Now he was reduced to a temper tantrum the level any normal child could throw, pounding his fists against the ground and crying for his mother.

The tantrum started as any other one would have. Gaia had taken something away from the boy. First she had taken him from his home, and then she stripped him of his status, removing everything that symbolized that status. Out here he had no servants, no clothes, and not, it seemed to him, any dignity.

“I’m hungry!’ Kain wailed to the uncaring sky, taking up a new chant among the vast array of others. “I’m cold! I want my bed! I want my mother! I want my father! I want my clothes!”

Gaia sat with her back to him, staring off into the same empty sky as her deft fingers worked a slender silver knife back and forth across a small wooden figure. She carved the figure from the remains of one of Kain’s destroyed trees, and it sat curled in the palm of her hand.

The face appeared, its eyes clenched shut and its brow furrowed into a terrible grimace. She left the mouth open with the lips pulled back showing tiny perfect teeth. If one held the figure up to his ear and listened closely enough, he might hear it screaming into the sky.

The whittling grew hair as tiny bits of wood flew away. Ears small and round, and shoulders with barely enough meat on them to support the figure as it pressed against Gaia’s palm. Its hands were small and delicate, hands that never before held a weapon, hands that never before had to prepare their own food, hands that had never before had to kill.

Something nibbled at the edges of her consciousness, something like a bad dream or ugly memory, as she looked at the tiny figure. It reminded her of something or someone she had known before and forgotten. It reminded her of a child very much like the one crying for his mother behind her.

She shoved the thought away, and admired her handywork for another second: Long enough to know it was an exact replica of the boy who lay crying in the middle of the zone of destruction. Kain curled up into a fetal position, praying to whatever powers his parents had taught him about for relief from this unending torment.

Gaia was about to tell him that there would be none.

She walked down to where he lay, carefully picking her path through the remains of Kain’s five-day tantrum. She held the effigy in both hands so that if she did trip, she wouldn’t damage it. It was important for this first lesson, and it was a lesson Kain had to learn.

“Kain,” she said, with no sign of compassion in her voice. She held out the carving in one hand, even though Kain had yet to look up.

“This is you,” she motioned towards the effigy as Kain began to look up. “It’s pathetic looking, isn’t it? I carved this in under an hour, and in that hour you went from screaming your head off to lying on the ground blubbering for your mother. Is that any way for an Atlantean Prince to act?

“I don’t think it is. I think an Atlantean Prince should act with dignity and respect. An Atlantean Prince is a person whom the people of Atlantis should be able to look up to as a hero and an example of how they should act throughout the day and throughout their lives. You are none of these things.”

Kain looked up at Gaia, his expression petulant and damning, face streaked with tears and caked with five day’s worth of dirt and grime. He looked at the effigy in her hand and anger welled deep within his diminutive form.

He knew she was right. He asked himself what his father would do in this situation, and he knew the answer was not lying here feeling sorry for himself. Or calling out for his mother. Or praying.

His father would not care about Gaia stripping them of their clothing, and if no one had brought him food, he would go and get his own. Kain knew that was how his father would act. He didn’t care, though.

Kain lashed out at Gaia’s hand, using his own frail palm to try and knock the wooden figure from her grip. He didn’t get the result he wanted.

Instead, Gaia struck him across the cheek with the back of the hand that held the effigy. The wood representation of Kain hung in the air as her arm stretched across the distance between her and Kain.

Her movements were fast, Kain couldn’t tell what happened until his cheek stung and he lay sprawled on the floor several feet away from Gaia, facing the wrong direction.

“Rule number one, child,” Gaia said. She held the effigy out and it popped into nonexistence before she continued. “You will not strike at me if you have not been given permission. Punishment for this will be far greater than the punishment you just received. Rule number two: You will no longer destroy things that are of my creation. I overlooked the destruction of this forest because it was necessary for you to learn you will not get your way out here. Should you do so at anytime in the future, whether it be a forest or a whittling, your punishment will be eighty lashes with a rod. Do you understand me, child?”

Kain stood up; his flesh had paled over the last five days and the white tone of his skin caused the streaks of heavy black dirt to stand out in drastic comparison. He turned toward her, his eyes filled to the brim with not so veiled hatred.

His eyebrows furrowed, pulling together and creating creases along the center of his forehead. His tears dug trails through the dirt on his cheeks. Gaia’s heart didn’t flutter for a moment, and she knew what needed to be done.

Kain’s head and back arched, a great snort welling up from deep within his throat, and he spit a globe of phlegm right at Gaia.

Gaia snorted, just a little entertained by Kain’s act of defiance. She intensified her aura at the point where the globe of spit and snot would impact. It disintegrated, but she knew the flying ball of phlegm had not been Kain’s attack.

It was a distraction, and now the boy was starting to change.

Kain’s body lurched forward, his spine starting to lengthen, preparing to grow a tail out of the tiny form he now held. Twin nubs of flesh and bone pushed up right in between his shoulder blades. His mouth and nose lurched forward, becoming a short snout. The flesh of his upper lip and nose hardening as the lip started to sharpen to a point.

Prefect white teeth began to grow, incisors first, then the rest, all becoming sharp and deadly. They were now in the infancy of becoming the greatest predator in the world’s teeth, the dragon’s teeth, each like tiny steak knives, designed to rip and tear through flesh no matter the protection it had.

His eyes shifted, taking a more predatory and lizard like position on the sides of his head: Ears withering to nothing as three rows of spikes burst from his forehead, and another pair of spikes growing out from the ridges that were now his eyebrows.

All the spikes started out small at the point where the line began, and then grew to a maximum length of six inches as they crested at the crown of his skull and began to work their way down his back.

At first Kain’s skin became like goose bumps, but then began to section themselves off into tiny triangles. They took a sickly green appearance and started to harden, within seconds the tiny scales were as hard as diamonds. His body started to grow; his rib cage forced its way out, making room for larger muscles and additional organs.

Three hearts began to beat inside Kain’s chest. Two regular lungs, in addition to those already there, began to force oxygen into his blood stream faster and faster, and the specialized dragon lungs began to develop. He was a young drake, but his body was advanced for his age, a condition of prime breeding, and both the lung that contained a unique type of chemical in it that froze water vapor on contact, and the lung that superheated the oxygen in his blood to create fire were completely ready to use.

Even the specialized vent that allowed Atlantean Acid Drakes to inject their stomach acids into a jet of superheated air so they could exhale a cloud of acid (which was almost guaranteed to stop their opponents in their tracks) and didn’t develop until well into their adulthood. Kain had one though, and that was what he wanted to use against Gaia right now.

A trio of successive rips sounded along Kain’s back, the first was his spine ripping through the flesh at the base of his torso and lengthening out nearly as long as he was tall. The second was the skeletal left wing. The third and final rip was a fully formed wing ripping its way out of Kain’s right shoulder blade. Muscle started to creep up the skeletal left wing, and another set of muscles and tendons started to grow on his exposed spinal column.

Spikes grew at the end of the tail, right out of the bone, and a new set of joints began to appear at the end. A spike formed on the very last vertebrae, just before the joint, and as it reached out of the bone, it curved and slid down so that it fit easily inside the joint. Another scythe like spike grew on the opposite side of his tail and fit into the joint just like the other.

Scales and flesh covered the tail; an odd leather like substance grew to cover the great gaping spaces in the wing, and the joints in his leg reversed. His feet and hands split apart in some places and grew together in others. Talons grew out of the fused spaces and his entire body weight almost tripled.

Kain, as an Atlantean Acid Drake (one of the fiercest types of dragons), his scales a sickly color and his eyes a smoldering emerald, glared at Gaia. He was as he had been born now. He came out of his mother as a dragon in an egg, and he would always be most comfortable in this form.

He snorted once and leapt into the air. His wings caught air, snapped once, twice, and then pulled himself higher into the air.

Gaia watched Kain’s flight, noting things about how he moved. Many of those things she noted were purely strategic. How Kain tipped and showed the joint where his wing connected to his back. How when he flapped, his legs jittered, giving any good shot with a ranged weapon the chance to plant a bolt right into his joint and incapacitate or kill him with that shot. How his emotional state showed clearly in how he flew through the air with starts and stops, and how any intelligent being using only sticks and a rock to fight him would be able to overcome him if they taunted him enough.

These were the things Gaia took note of, because these were the things she was going to have to teach him in the long years they would be spending together.

Kain spilt air from his wings, tucked them in close to his body, and dove towards Gaia with a look of maddening glee in his eyes. His speed increased and she stood waiting.

He took a quick breath, filling his inferno lung with the oxygen needed for the assault; the mental clamp his body held on the vent that would allow the acid to enter his windpipe began to loosen.

At fifty yards his wings spread, his body jerked backwards, and his mouth dropped open. He spewed forth a cloud of hyper heated acidic vapor, and he smiled with his eyes. He hoped to watch the vapors eat away at Gaia’s form. He was denied.

Gaia moved a second before gravity brought the vapors down to her level. Quick as the blink of an eye, and she now stood at eye level, seemingly on nothing, with Kain’s stunned draconic features.

Gaia snapped her fingers; Kain’s hyper sensitive hearing picked up a slight pop as something materialized in Gaia’s hand. She jerked the new item forward in a single thrust, and Kain’s childish mind supposed that it was a knife. When he felt whatever it was press against his neck, he supposed his life was over.

Kain’s mind slowed, reeling around the possibility of dying at a young age, and he blacked out, hoping there would be no pain in the end.

Gaia caught Kain’s unconscious form, believing that it would just add insult to injury if she let him drop to the ground, especially when there would be no lesson learned from the pain when he woke up. Her methods were unique, and Gaia knew her sister considered her training techniques to be cruel, but Gaia believed in pain with a purpose.

She lugged the acid drake over one shoulder like he was an oversized sack of potatoes, and looked at the item she had materialized. It was a rather plain wooden spoon, something else she had made while he was crying over not getting his clothes, his food, his way, or whatever it had been.

She intended to use the spoon as a disciplinary tool, not unlike the rod she had mentioned earlier. The spoon was not meant to bring physical harm like the rod would though.

The spoon was a far more psychological instrument than the rod. The spoon was an item any person in any house in any village, city, or even a traveler’s pack would have.

She had seen his thoughts, and was glad that he had associated the spoon with a knife. That association would make him fear it that much more, and with the knowledge that he would be disciplined by something every living being on the face of the planet had, she would teach him equality, and anybody could get lucky enough to get a knife, or a spoon, in his back or throat.

Chapter Five

Copyright Ryan M. Smith 2014

Badrick Witch***

I didn’t have to ask Mel to give me a topic today! I came up with one all by myself. Lol. You should all be proud of me… and those of you who aren’t… well, you all can bite a hockey puck flavored biscuit.

Not sure where that came from. I might be a little hyper. Though, it’s more likely that I’m so tired I’m going crazy.


I had to work today, and there’s nothing like work to bring out the worst in me. I don’t know what it is, but it’s like I go to work and sink to the bottom of a cesspool. So, I tried to keep my mind busy with something else. It turned around towards something I did last night.

While I was working on my Dungeons and Dragons adventure I had to come up with a minor mob fight for an encounter. The PCs last left things off in a bar, so I figured I’d use the barkeeper as the mob for the encounter. I’d planned to use him as a way to give the PCs information and thought why not have them beat the info out of the barkeeper.

So, I worked up stats for the NPC (non-player character) based off of what I’d told them about the barkeeper before. He’s a dwarf who was in some terrible mishap and lost both legs and an arm. These limbs were replaced with big hulking stone limbs like one’s you’d see on a golem. In fact, the template I applied to the NPC is the Half Golem template. I worked the stats up, did some play testing and figured that was it.

Today, as a way to escape from work I named him. Badrick Witch*** (that last part is vulgar and I’m trying to stay kid friendly today) and he is the owner/operator of The Witches *** (same word, same reason) the bar/tavern/inn the PCs are staying at. But, that wasn’t enough. I wanted to know what had happened to him to make him the way he is. His name isn’t Darth Vader, so I don’t believe it was a fateful lightsaber duel on the volcanic planet of Mustafar.

Then an argument crept into mind. One a father and son might have. The father wants his son to do one thing, and the son wants to do another.

And, until I started to write the argument out I had it right there at the front of my mind.

“You’re a Witch***, and Witch***s are barkeepers. I’ve got a bar, passed down to me from your grandfather, and he got it from his father. This bar has been in the Witch*** family for fourteen generations, and you want to break the chain?”

That’s Badrick’s father. It’s an age old fight that will go on so long as there are fathers and sons. But, Badrick wanted to be an adventurer, he told his father as much and ran off to join an adventuring party that had just stayed at The Witch’s ***. They took him along, and the party ran afoul of a deep horned dragon, a damn (there went the kid friendly) big beastie with eight heads, who thought the party would make a tasty snack. The dragon killed the adventurers one by one, swallowing them whole. It chomped on Badrick’s arm, then his legs (actually taking everything from the waist down), and left him there to die.

A wizard came along, fried the dragon, and saved Badrick’s life. But, there wasn’t a cleric to be found and arcane magic doesn’t do much good with replacing limbs. So, the wizard used his wizardy might to make stone replacement limbs for Badrick (The 6 Million Dollar Dwarf). Everything went pretty much as planned and the wizard sent Badrick on his way.

He returned home, his heart broken by the cold fact that he wasn’t cut out to be an adventurer. He accepted the destiny his father put before him, and became the disgruntled dwarven barkeeper he is today.

As a neat little character trait, I’ve made it so that Badrick’s lost some control of his limbs over the long years, and the limbs have taken to murdering random NPCs. Yet, the people of the town Badrick lives in don’t perceive this trait as a problem. He does live in a pirate town after all.

Anywho, that’s enough from me. Maybe the PCs will overcome Badrick the Half Golem, maybe they won’t. And, maybe Badrick will make another appearance later on in the story.




Thursday, January 23, 2014


So, I really need to come up with a list of random topics to pull from instead of asking Mel. I got Snow yesterday and Unicorn’s today. I fear that the longer this goes on the more girly the topics will get. Soon I’ll be talking about painting my toe nails and discussing the pros and cons of puffy pink butterflies. And, the funny thing is, Mel isn’t that girly. She’s more of a tomboy, so these girly topics are coming way out of left field.


Anywho, unicorns are pretty perfect creatures that are basically a cross breeding attempt between a horse and a rhino, throw some narwhal in there too just to really mix things up, and you get a horse with a horn growing straight up from its forehead. Not multiples that could masquerade as antlers nor are they curved ram like horns good for head butting. No, just one horn; it gives the wrestling move “spear” a whole new meaning.

But, what else is important about unicorns? I read the unicorn entry in the Monster Manual, and I thought of a way to include unicorns in my current campaign. Mel’s convinced they’d kill us (us being the PCs, not me), but I think they could take it. A unicorn is a CR (challenge rating) 3 creature, and there are six or seven PCs (Player Characters), I forget the exact number, and they’re all level one. But, I’ve put them up against a CR 2 dragon and they ripped it a new one. I don’t even think any of the PCs took damage in that fight.

So, yeah, a unicorn might be making an appearance in game. You have been warned Damn Dirty Dungeon Crawlers. Mwahahahahahahahahahaha

And, that’s enough of that.

I know unicorns are fantasy creatures, and that they come from mythology, but I’m not actually sure what mythological traditions. And, after asking Mel about it, I’m even more confused. She was telling me that there were unicorn sightings in Germanic and Celtic mythology, which is where I thought they came from, but there are also reports from Greek mythology and the Bible! There are accounts about unicorn hunts and the connection between the purity of a unicorn and Christ.

It’s a lot of stuff I didn’t know.

Hell, I didn’t even realize that Queen Elizabeth I had two unicorn horns! They’re narwhal horns, but still, who could look at a horn like that and not imagine it coming from some great majestic beast. I know I would have been convinced unicorns existed if somebody had showed me a narwhal’s horn right after the story about him getting said horn from a unicorn.

I’m even thinking of a story that runs in that direction. A story about a man getting duped, giving up everything he owns to have the unicorn’s horn, and finds out later that everything was a lie… Damn it! I need to stop giving out story ideas…


As for any other matters of importance; I don’t know. I’ll just say that my Dungeon Crawlers ought to look forward to their first encounter with a unicorn.


Here's a link to the website Mel was giving me info from.

Wednesday, January 22, 2014


So, I still haven’t come up with a list of random topics to write about, and I didn’t want to talk about anything serious today. So, I used Mel as a random topic generator and she gave me snow as a topic… I don’t know what to write about snow…

Damn it.

Well, I guess I can just start going, and let the writing come the way it usually does.

Snow is the white fluffy stuff that falls from the sky when it’s really friggin’ cold outside. It’s pretty, but it’s kind of a double edged sword. Snow, and its close cousin ice, is dangerous when it accumulates on roads. This is why I’ve always (since I started driving anyway) said I’d love snow if it didn’t fall on the road.

However, Mel wouldn’t like that development much. If snow didn’t fall on the roads then there would be no reason to call off school. And, the way she puts it, snow days are the reason she became a teacher. I thought it was because she really had a passion for passing knowledge on to the generation of tomorrow. If not that, I thought it would at least be June, July, and August. Although, those reasons might be disappearing soon; I’ve heard talk of year round schooling. :P

As for other things about snow, you can build snowmen, and snowball fights hurt a lot less than rock fights. And, it’s always entertaining to introduce somebody who’s never seen snow to that type of weather. Plus the entertainment value of seeing states like North Carolina overreact to an inch of snow. There’s also the people up north who think we overreact when it comes to snow. Then there are the people from northern Canada and Alaska who are like “we drive on lakes, what’s this putting down salt thing you’re talking about?”

And, I had more entertaining references to people who live in cold climates, but there really aren’t enough people living in Antarctica to make funny references about. Though you have to wonder, is it possible that a tribe of humans evolved and became suited to living under the ice and through tunnels in the glaciers. Homo Coldasballsus perhaps? I guess there are possibilities, but it sounds more like a good idea for a horror novel.

I’ll have to pack that one away and see if anything comes out of it.

There was something else I’d thought about, but it went away.

Yetis maybe…

Now we’re travelling down a slippery slope that would lead us straight to a bad Sci Fi movie. Or it might lead us to a wampa layer where we’ll find a mummified wampa with only one arm. Who knows?

I think my favorite fictional snow dwelling creature-ish thing is the Arctic Dwarves. Those little buggers (seriously, they’re only two feet tall) come out of the Forgotten Realms campaign setting for Dungeons and Dragons. They’re not much like other dwarves though. They live in tribes instead of clans (big difference there lol) and lean more towards a barbaric nature (if I’m not mistaken their favored class is barbarian) and their crafts obviously lean more towards skins and beads and ice working rather than masonry and metal work. Think miniature Eskimos, lol.

And, I think I’ll end this here. I’ve been inspired to go and make a winter based dwarven race for my own campaign setting. Later folks.


Tuesday, January 21, 2014

As Time Goes By

In the last two days I’ve managed to forget my blog post each day L So, now I’ve had a major drop in views and the people who usually read my blog are upset. Probably not really, but I’m going to think that anyway. As negative as it might be.

But, I’m working on things, trying to push forward and not let the days I’ve stumbled clutter my mind and drag me down. I’m only human, I make mistakes the same as everybody else. What gets me though is how I dwell on those mistakes, and inflate them to great sizes. I give them more importance than they should have, and it weighs me down.

It makes me miserable.

And, misery is easy. Misery is the lazy way of life, the acceptance of mediocrity, and the denial of the fruits of our true labors and passions. Misery is easy because you don’t have to change.

Even now my mind is fighting against that word. It’s afraid of that word and so am I. Change means so many things. Making sure you change your underwear is the least of it. Change means success and failure. Change means pain and misery of a different variety, but if you strive through it and push hard enough you can break through that misery. You can improve.

I need to change, and I’ve been trying to change bit by bit. I’ve needed to change for a long while now and all the bits and pieces of that realization are falling together. I was even talking to one of my friends today about having to change the way she thinks so that she becomes good at math. I told her she needs to make that decision and find the way to follow through with it until she’s found her way out the other side; when she’s over to the point where math is easy.

I need to practice what I’ve been preaching.

For some reason all that sounds extremely negative, and I’ve managed to depress myself by writing it. That wasn’t my intention. I really promise that it wasn’t. I wanted to find the good in it, the thread of it that I can take and apply to my life to help clean up the mess I’ve made.

There was a Macklemore & Ryan Lewis song, I believe, that’s either about movies or books, but either way it’s talking about something one must do with both. They talk about how your whole life is this book/movie and that there’s only one person that has the ability to edit that work. I am the only person that can edit my story. You’re the only person that can edit your story. So on and so forth. The point is, again, that there’s only one place change can come from. (After driving around for a little while my mp3 player played this song. It is “Life is Cinema” and it’s comparing life to a movie. Just thought I’d throw that out there.)

And, I’m not saying that other people can’t help. There are hordes of people that can help. There’s even a series of careers based solely on that idea of helping somebody change. You are the only person who can institute change, but others can help instigate it, or show you the many paths you have to choose from, and they can show you the tools you can use to make that change.

In other words, therapists are awesome. You should go and get one right now.

Everybody needs to change. Remaining static is akin to dying. And, there’s one phrase I’m looking for right now. A common cliché I believe. Shit or get off the pot. Yeah, that’s it. Shit or get off the pot. Do something different with your life. Don’t just sit there. Embrace change.


Saturday, January 18, 2014

Days and Days

Today’s been one of those days that’s been both good and bad.

We got the insurance money in yesterday, and I put it in the account today, though due to bank procedures they’ve got a two day hold on it. A two day business hold on it. I’m not going to have access to it until Wednesday. That’s not necessarily a bad thing. It keeps me from spending it that much faster, and it gives us time to look at where we need to spend it. The down payment on the Focus is the major thing, then there’s the insurance and other bills. Yesterday I had a spell of depression, because I realized I wouldn’t get to spend it on the things I wanted too.

I feel stupid for that crap today. I’m an adult now and I need to act like one. There’s a difference between wants and needs. And, I can’t help it that I need a terabyte hard drive for my computer. And, I can’t help it that I need a sound card for my computer… And, yeah, you’re not buying this are you? Great. Nobody’s on my side. Lol.

Yes, I am joking. I’ve been told people can’t tell before… so, I’m not sure if I can get that across in my writing or not.

Now, I’m feeling self conscious.

Too move on, we’ll talk about the bad part of the day.

First, I had to work… that’s always a bad thing. Lol.

And, today makes one month since my good friend Bob Shreve passed from this world and into the next. I would have a moment of silence, but seeing as this is a text medium, I don’t think the point would go across very well. So, instead I will wish him a peaceful rest and tell him that he is very missed. Very missed.

Bob was an inspiration to me though. He taught me about play testing for Dungeons and Dragons. I don’t mean what editors and writers of the game call the first few run through(s) with different test players, audience, focus groups, I don’t know what word to use here. The play testing he taught me about was a number crunching game; the DM running the PCs stats against the monsters stats to determine the most likely outcome of the encounter.

It’s a wonderful tool.

 But, I’ll tell you what… I’m too lazy to do that. Lol. I’d rather have a computer program do it for me.

I looked for a program like that, but I didn’t find one. And, I made a decision then. I’m going to learn how to code, and I’m going to write a program that does exactly what I just said. Then I’m going to make it a smartphone app, and I’m going to sell it. And, two-thirds of every cent that app makes is going to go to Bob Shreve’s family and to his church. He can’t be there to support them, so I’m going to try and help out, even if it’s just that tiny amount. I’m going to try to help.

Now, I just need to learn how to code.

That will probably be easier to do when I don’t have tears running down my cheeks.

So, yeah…

I’m going to go now…


Friday, January 17, 2014

Raising Kain: Diseased God Chapter Three

Chapter One
Chapter Two

Raising Kain: Diseased God
Chapter Three

“Apophis, come down here!”
The voice was his mother’s, and she was almost always telling him what to do. Kain, as he preferred to be called, turned six-years-old today. And planned on spending the day lounging on the palace’s third floor, just sucking in the sun’s rays, and having his servants provide everything for him. He hadn’t even planned on moving from the spot he was in right now at all during the day, at least not until his mother called for him.

His mother was Celita Luna, the Aspect of the Moon one of the Four Aspects of Life. She was the third being in existence, and by this time she was so old that Kain could hardly believe she had managed to carry him the entire two year duration of the dragon’s gestation period, plus the six month egg incubation time.

One of his tutors, whom he barely paid any attention at all too, told him that a female dragon’s reproductive system only worked for the first four thousand years of her life, but apparently the tutor had been wrong about this particular fact. Well, concerning his mother anyway. Kain guessed she was special, because of who she was, and she would probably be able to have as many children as she wanted whenever she wanted to.

Her voice came up from the Hatchery; it was the place she spent most of her time. Kain couldn’t understand why, even though Celita told him it was because she worried about his brother. To his knowledge though Kain didn’t have a brother, just a stupid egg that hadn’t hatched yet.


His mother’s voice was more insistent this time, and with a great heaving sigh, Kain got up from the plush armed couch he had been dozing on. He had dragged the chair out from beneath the roof, or the floor of the fourth floor whichever anybody wanted to call it, so it was right out on the balcony, right in the spot where the sun’s bright golden rays hit first.

Apolla Sola, the Aspect of the Sun and the First Aspect of Life, always made it bright and sunny on Kain’s birthday. Sola knew Kain loved sun bathing, and always made it easy for him to do so, especially when he was in a good mood. Now, though, Kain was starting not to be in such a good mood, and was wondering if a nice destructive temper tantrum in the middle of the Hatchery would teach his mother not to mess with his birthday celebration, lazy as it might be.

“Apophis, get down here now!” she demanded from several floors down.

Kain sighed and turned to face the central stairwell. The third floor of the palace spread out before him, and it was probably one of the most amazing feats of engineering anybody had ever seen. Somebody, one of the peasants living in the city most likely, told Kain that people came from all over the empire to see it, but Kain thought that was boring adult talk. He didn’t really care if everybody thought that the palace was amazing, as a matter of fact, Kain thought everybody should find the palace amazing looking. And everybody from all over the world should come here to see it. He thought the whole reason they should is just because he lived here.

He yawned as he walked through the open space that made up the third floor. Careful as he did so, careful to avoid the invisible roots that made up the supports for the fourth and fifth floors, as well as supplying life to the oversized Tree of Life that towered high above the street level, and beyond even the highest peaks of the surrounding mountains. It was these roots that made it possible for the third story of the palace to have no walls or visible supports of any sort. These roots and the light bending magic of Shadus that kept them invisible.

Shadus was the Fourth Aspect of Life, the Aspect of Shadow. He was the only Aspect Kain didn’t like that much, and it wasn’t because he didn’t enjoy being around his creepy uncle. The pair of them shared a very similar dark sense of humor. The only thing that made Kain dislike this Aspect, in particular, was the fact that he had too many nicknames, and most of them were corny.

“The Living King of Shadow?” Kain had asked looking at his black sheep of an uncle. “The hells is that? Am I the living king of shadow now, too?” While he finished the question, Kain waved his hand in front of a small candle. The light made a figment of his hand dance on the wall.

Shadus wasn’t impressed by Kain’s behavior, and neglected to come to see him whenever he came to the palace for three months after that particular incident.

“Apophis Kain, I want you down here before I count to three!” Celita said, her voice was on the edge of shouting, and Kain figured that he better listen to her.

He closed his pupil-less emerald eyes, and he opened his mind’s eye. In it he saw the very top of the stairwell leading down to the Hatchery, around his eye’s vision he could see the well formed stone of the small passage, he could smell the moisture and sweat of the stones in the wet atmosphere, he could feel the heat of the constantly baking furnaces.

His skin started to prickle with perspiration, and just below his six-year-old feet he could feel the rough yet smooth surface of the stone, he could curl his tiny toes down over the top edge of the exact stone he wanted to be on. When his mother called out her number “one,” he could hear her as if she were right down at the foot of the stairs, and at a great distance like she was while his body was back on the third floor. His lips parted, and the word “poof” escaped his lips for a brief second.

An unsettling pop sounded in his ears, and he felt as if his stomach were turned upside down for a very short amount of time. He knew he had just bent the laws of space and time to travel in-between the third floor and the stairwell leading down to the Hatchery, but it was still a hard concept for his six year old mind to grasp.

His toes now curled over the edge of the stone he imagined just seconds ago, he took a deep breath and his lungs filled with the musky smelling atmosphere, and his skin prickled with tiny drops of perspiration as the heat from the ever burning furnaces caressed his form. His mother’s voice called out her second numeral, and Kain began to walk down the stairs.

He heard hushed voices in a language he couldn’t quite understand, he heard his mother take in a breath of air, preparing to say “three.” But he stepped out onto the landing before she did so.

“What?” he said in the most petulant voice a six year old could manage.

Celita looked at him, and he realized she was on the verge of hysterics. There were also two other people in the room with him and his mother.

One was his father, Ouranus Skygod, ruler of Atlantis. One of the most powerful beings in existence, and he looked it. Eight feet three inches tall, and weighing over five hundred pounds. His hair was as white as freshly fallen snow, and a cloak of fire swept up over the immense mass of his body. His eyes were crimson, and the iris had long ago consumed the pupil and whites of his eye. His thin lips were always turned down in an unpleasant grimace. Except for when he saw his son, this time, Ouranus didn’t smile when he looked at Kain, this time his brow furrowed and his eyes grew a shade darker.

“What need does she have of my son?” Ouranus asked, his voice laced with barely veiled fury. He jabbed a thick sausage like finger at the other figure in the room. This elusive other figure was standing in the glare of the furnaces’ flames with her back turned towards him, but as soon as she began to turn around Kain knew who she was.

Terra Gaia, better known as Gaia, the Aspect of the Earth and the Second Aspect of Life, small in stature, standing only five feet three inches tall and weighing at most a hundred and ten pounds; but her powers and aura dwarfed that of Ouranus’s. She was Kain’s favorite aunt, and pretty much Kain’s favorite person in all of existence. Her hair was the color of fresh amber, and her eyes were a twinkling black and white that made Kain think of the night sky. When she was mad, which the six year old little boy had only seen once, they were molten like the fires that burnt deep down within her true being. To Kain she was the most beautiful thing in existence, and the moment he saw her he wanted nothing more than to be held in her arms forever.

“Gaia is to train Kain, and with her training he will rise to the ranks of the Aspects.” Celita said, breaking Kain’s train of thought, and making him drag his eyes away from Gaia. “With her training he will become one of the most powerful beings in the universe.”

Kain looked at his mother for the first time since he got down to the Hatchery. She sat, unlike the other two, pressing her hand against the other egg she had when laying Kain. The egg was the same height as Gaia and the flames from Ouranus’s cloak gave it a red hued appearance. Kain knew it was black with dark green spots though. In between each of the spots, and at the points where the black seemed to come to a crossroads there were tiny moon shaped symbols; some where crescent, some half, some full, some just a tiny thumbnail moon; only one on the entire thing, though, was just a half white outline. Kain assumed this was meant to be a New Moon, and he guessed that if he counted the symbols there would be twenty-eight of them. One for each day of the lunar calendar.

Celita slapped the egg and stood up, drawing Kain’s attention back to her. He realized in this brief moment that his mother was tragically beautiful. Many of the peasants considered her and Gaia twins, believing that their unique moments of birth were close enough, on a galactic scale, to equate to being born on the same day. But there was no familial resemblance between the two of them.

Celita was tall, six feet four inches to be exact, and weighed only a hundred and thirty three pounds. Her silver hair cascaded down her shoulders and fell to a point that Kain couldn’t discern from his point of view. Celita’s eyes were similar to Gaia’s, but instead of a starry sky, they looked like a pair of crescent moons with the rest of the eye black, just like the night sky.

His mother’s face had a feline curve to it, and when compared to Gaia’s, it was sharp and angular. Her body was slim and just as angular as her face, and like Gaia, she dwarfed Ouranus’s power and aura, but in a manner much different than Gaia’s. Gaia was control; everything about her (emotions, powers, even motions) was perfectly controlled. But, Celita was chaos incarnate. Everything about his mother could change with the blink of an eye. Even her appearance if she so chose.

“I can train him and mold him into one of your Aspects,” Ouranus said, his eyes flashing in anger. “What can she teach him that I cannot?”

“Ouranus,” Celita said, sighing at the same time. “You are a god and yet your understanding is so limited. Kain is one of the chosen; he must be trained by the Aspect that chose him from the age of six until acceptance into our society…”

“At that point,” Gaia said, interrupting her sister. “You may test him as you see fit, and train him in whatever methods you feel that I have faltered in, but until that point, he is my pupil, and will be trained as I see fit.”

Kain swam in the silk like sound of Gaia’s voice, he didn’t understand what she was talking about, but it seemed it was important and it probably had something to do with him. Ouranus turned away from the pair, there was a dark look in his face. It was a look that Kain had never seen before, but he imagined his father was sad.

To Kain it seemed that his father was acting as if someone had struck him a hard blow below the belt. Kain knew he didn’t like that look, and hoped he would never have to see it on his father’s face again.

Ouranus’s eyes changed again, this time they narrowed to tiny slits, slits that promised anybody who went against what he was about to say would find their life expectancy shortened.

“I’ll agree to this on only one condition,” Ouranus said. “I reserve the right as the King of Atlantis to be able to call you back from wherever you decide to take him to train; when I call, you will bring him, and I will test him. During whatever point of that training you may be at. And, if there is war, and you are needed on the front, you will take him with you, and he will learn real battle.”

Ouranus took in a deep breath as he finished speaking, and stood up to the full expanse of his height. “Do you agree to my conditions?”

“The point is moot,” Gaia said. “He is chosen and whether I agree to your conditions or not, I must still be the one to train him. But, if it will placate you, I shall agree to your conditions.”

Ouranus took a long look at her, and nodded. Agreeing to the deal and sealing it with the nod instead of a handshake or anything like that. When it came to dealing with deities or the Aspects, all one had to do was get them to give the word and the deal was sealed in blood. Even Kain knew that much about the situation.

“Tau Gaia?” Kain asked using the Atlantean word for aunt. “Are we going somewhere?”

“Yes, my dear little one, we are.” She said walking over to him.

“Okay, let me go get some things to take with me,” Kain said, preparing to run back up to his room on the fourth floor to pack a traveling bag. He stopped, though, before he made it to the first step. “Should we bring one of the servants along to carry my travel items?”
Gaia smiled, but inside she cringed at what the vicious nature of the Aspects forced her to do to this small boy. “No sweetie, you don’t need to bring one of the servants along. You don’t even need to pack anything for the trip. We’ve got everything we’ll need where we’re going.” “Are you sure?” He asked, giving her a quizzical look. I’ve got a lot of important travel items to take with me.”
“Trust me sweetie,” She said, smiling. “You don’t need anything at all, now go say bye to your mommy and daddy.”

Chapter Four
Chapter Five

Copyright Ryan M. Smith 2014