[Break-time] Week One

 

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Like I would ever pass up a chance for this gif~

You know, sometimes a break is supposed to be fulfilling and freeing. But I’m not the best at taking them. I think that unwinding can come in many forms.

Creating something amazing, to me, that’s a way to unwind.

~Shakyra Dunn

I admit. I’m very proud of everything that I’ve accomplished for myself this year. My efforts are nearly exhausted, and I’m relieved that the end of 2018 is finally in sight.

So, why am I gonna blog despite it being my month-long break?

Because I like sharing. It gives some relation, and it allows you to get into the mind of a creator that kind of sucks at taking a proper break. Don’t worry, after this, I’m going to Gamestop to pay for the new Persona Dancing Games, and I’m gonna see Wreck-It-Ralph 2, so I’m not failing much at this promised break.

First Day

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My first day of my break was oddly out of character, but incredibly fun. Yesterday was my job’s Christmas party, and we went out to dinner at a Mexican restaurant that I’ve never been to. And, yes, I am the type that orders a burger at a Mexican restaurant.

After that, we went to a local bar to play pool, have drinks, and overall just kick it, and it was something that I never knew I needed. I’ve rarely had instances at jobs where I felt as though I was part of a family, and that was one of them. I felt… accepted.

And I really did enjoy it.

Oh! And I avoided being drunk! So that’s a good succession. And, no, I promise I was not driving, I got carpooled there, and at the end of the night, my roommate was kind enough to come bring me home.

I’m gonna continue with this mini-series for the next month, so I hope that you’ll stick around for more!

Excerpt 101

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Guess what! My novel, The Final Lesson, is still on sale for $.99, and my goal for the year was to sell 100 copies of it (both paperback and e-book) between its debut on June 13th. Right now, my number sits at 92, and I’d love to be able to meet this goal. So, I’m gonna share another excerpt of it, hype you up, and send you off to buy.

******

Rem took in a deep breath of fresh air once they freed themselves from the musty underground passage, stretching his arms up towards the cloudless sky. Laughter and merriment weren’t out of the norm for the sounds that rose from the city’s limits. Rem was marveling in the stone pathway guiding him into the land he cherished so, each step forward bringing him closer to a perfect alignment of brick buildings in a row of set columns, an assortment of fresh-baked goods and cooked meats filling his nose. The restaurants in their sight had people sitting outside at tables, awaiting their orders, and to their right, minstrels played lively tunes on their instruments. The citizens were raving about the gala set for that evening—anyone could tell based on their frantic banter and cheerful expressions alone.

January 19th, 1930. Today was his sixteenth birthday; of course, there would be a party. Not that his desire was to attend yet another event, but appearances had to be made. Another night of having his hair pulled out of his face, a polished coat and tie, more food than he could manage, and increments of liquor throughout the night to keep him composed, but not drunk, on the first night when he could legally touch the stuff. It was his own rite of passage.

He could already picture himself with Solus, sitting under the waterfall, carelessly chattering over a nice bottle of wine about what the future held for them. Solus was a year older, already able to drink, but no amount of sneaking could bring the young prince to take even a sip of his friend’s drinks of choice. At least now they had no restrictions.

“Is there anywhere you’d like to go?” Solus asked him. When Rem was able to pull his focus back to his friend, Solus was standing with both arms behind his back, curiously watching over him. The midday sun was reflecting off of him, giving his light brown hair a fair glow and his emerald eyes an impeccable sheen.

Rem was already beaming. “Let’s go to Kinstreak for cream puffs!” Solus chuckled, mostly to himself, as if he already knew that response was coming.

They took a leisurely stroll down the busy streets, narrowly avoiding the crowds with Solus expressing his pardons to those that they bumped into for them both. If anything, Rem caught the scent of the pastry shop’s treats from several miles away, as if he were a hound on the hunt for prey. Down a beaten alleyway, they stumbled upon a small building with a wooden sign reading ‘Kinstreak,’ the bell chiming once the young prince had pushed the doors open.

“Phiran!” Rem called, looking about the empty shop. Solus shut the door behind them and took care that no one else was stepping in, lest his master causally flipped his lid about his identity. A bald, slender man with tanned skin emerged from the back room, having just finished some housework, which was evident by the dust on his apron.

“Oh, good morning, Your Highness, Solus,” Phiran responded, tossing his apron onto the floor before going to fetch a new one from his closet. “It’s been a while since your faces graced my presence. Come for more pastries, have you?”

Rem nodded frantically, lips moistening from the anticipation. “Cream puffs, cream puffs, cream puffs now.” Solus laid a firm hand on the boy’s head, a wordless call for patience. Phiran playfully shook his head. That was the prince’s favorite snack, and apparently, it was a driving force for sneaking away from his charmed life.

“Very well then.” Phiran gathered a bag of six cream puffs ranging in flavor before handing it off to Rem, who was searching his pockets for Nyte coins. “No need. Consider it a birthday gift.” Rem nodded his thanks, taking a bite of one of the delicacies, his chocolate-colored eyes lighting up at the strawberry filling. Solus grinned softly. “Where are the two of you headed today? Seeing the sights?”

“Just having an escapade,” Solus explained. “Remiel was looking to venture to the waterfall and have some free time before the gala preparations are complete.”

“I’m so not needed,” Rem responded, waving his hand in dismissal. “Why stick around?”

“You are certainly the poster of a rebel prince,” Phiran stated, passing off a couple of glasses of water to the boys, to which Solus held up the glass in appreciation. “Let’s hope that you don’t go around causing as much trouble for your family as you did as a child.”

Rem rolled his eyes. “I suppose that in time I’ll become a model king. For now, a little freedom wouldn’t kill anyone, especially not me.” He turned to his friend. “Let’s go, Sol. I want to enjoy these with a breeze.”

“As you wish,” Solus replied. Rem and Solus exited the tiny shop after bidding the man farewell. “Everyone in this kingdom treats you so kindly, even without knowing who you truly are.”

This statement snagged Rem’s attention before he could take another bite of his cream puff, causing him to pout. “I think it’s just their nature. A lot of people here are nice, like Phiran.”

“I’ve wondered for some time,” Solus began. “How did you two meet?”

“Me and Phiran? He used to be a knight, but he didn’t have much of a knack for the sword. My father lets him choose his own fate, and he discovered his love of baking.” Rem paused to finish his snack, licking the remains off his fingers. “He quit the knight’s round when I was eight after he got married and had a little girl, opened up Kinstreak, and the rest is family history. So, it worked out for the best.”

“And now the crown prince is stealing away his business,” Solus joked.

“No, I’m the one keeping the shop open!” Rem reasoned. “I’ll give him all the support that he needs as long as he keeps making those cream puffs and keeps my identity hush-hush!”

“I’m sure that he will.”

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