thatrcooper: (Default)
Ah! Back! Where have I been? Exhausted. I work retail as a day job. This means this is my busy time of year.

However, I did manage to do a little something. A wee little Thanksgiving story, for those interested. It's up on Amazon.

Vincent's Thanksgiving Date

Socially anxious Vincent has resigned himself to spending Thanksgiving alone this year, just him, the parade, and some pie. The last thing he expects is Cory, the handsome neighbor he's been daydreaming about, to knock on his door with a holiday crisis of his own. Vincent would love to help him, but he's afraid that the more time Cory spends with him, the sooner Vincent's anxiety will drive him away.

What he doesn't realize is that Cory finds Vincent's gentle ways adorable and has been waiting for a chance to talk with him. Cory also firmly believes that a day like Thanksgiving should be spent with the people you want to be around--and he wants to be around Vincent. If that means pretending to need help in order to coax Vincent from his apartment, then Cory is willing to do it. The only potential hitch in the plan is Vincent himself. Can Vincent gather the courage to go after what he wants? Or will he spend his Thanksgiving exactly as he planned, with only a pumpkin pie for company?

(Ugh. The cheese in that description! Shameless cheese!)

For those who don't follow me on Tumblr, you might not know that Dreamspinner has accepted both A Beginner's Guide to Wooing Your Mate *and* Little Wolf. Those are both Beings stories and they will be out next year. A Beginner's Guide first, for reasons that will be obvious when you read it.

This is yaaaay! news, I hope. Although it means I will basically be spending December editing two books. WOE. I have also been trying to finish a collection of Beings short stories... why I don't know but I wrote a few and then kept going. One more (I think) should finish the set. Then... idk. Something.

I still fully intend to do something for charity, but between the lifting at work and the typing, I am also trying to avoid carpal tunnel. (No word yet on the renewed date for the auction, but Carly Rose is still having health issues, so I'm hardly going to pressure her.)

Aaaaand, now I am going to reward myself for posting that story with some wine and pie.

That story is so self-indulgent and I don't even care. lalalalala

(But who wouldn't marathon Shelley Long movies?)
thatrcooper: (sleepy holly by holly_ita)
Back to that official news I promised.

Dreamspinner accepted "A Beginner's Guide to Wooing Your Mate" --shocking me more than anyone. Now, of course, I have even more doubt about it. Should I have made it longer? (It's only about a hundred pages.) Should I have given it an epilogue?

Sigh.

This is good news though. It also means that I had to submit the story that follows it, the story that wouldn't go away, "Little Wolf." (Which is over 300 pages somehow). I made myself submit it this evening. Now I have even more doubt, and eight weeks in which to feel it.

But that's okay. Feelings are good.

Speaking of which. I want all of you awesome people to know I'm okay. A little slow, at the moment. Some anxiety issues and some crying but okay. Good even. Better than I was. As I was just telling a kind anon, my mood swings usually aren't so sudden or dramatic and there was a lot of personal drama that made it worse. (It's still happening, in fact, but I finally remembered the ways I've learned to deal with things, and I feel better about starting to face all of it. Someday. For today it was enough to submit "Little Wolf" and make myself work out a little.) Anyway, I wanted to say again that you all have been amazing. To show my love, I thought I'd post this.

So on Tumblr last week, I tried to kick start my brain into active/writing mode again (it didn't really work. Everything was painstaking and slow and focusing sucked) but I did manage to answer three of the writing prompts people gave me.

Here is one. I will edit the other two and post them at a later date. (They were Will/Charlie prompts.)

The prompt was amnesia, and I chose Ray and Cal from "Some Kind of Magic" because lately, the Beings stories I've done have involved werewolves dealing with their instincts, and how they might trust their instincts, but they don't really understand them. Also there is a very, very vague "Little Wolf" reference in there, but it isn't a spoiler or anything.

~~

Read more... )
thatrcooper: (sleepy holly by holly_ita)
Hey! I said I would pass on the release date when I found it out, aaaaand then I forgot. I am such fail. I can't even tell you. Tsk.

JULY 7. IT'S JULY 7. THE RELEASE DATE IS JULY 7. (Oh right the poison. The poison for Kuzco. The poison chosen especially to kill Kuzco. Kuzco's poison.)

Sorry about that. However, I've been informed that pre-ordering is possible. Which is good, because Dreamspinner sent me about twenty sheets to sign to put in the paperback copies. Now I just have to actually sign them. IDK. If I were Rhoades, and I were signing a book, I would sign with something smart and classical and Greek. If I were Wicklow, I'd probably just slash an "X" and be done with it. (Yes, I make things too complicated. I should just sign my name. But where is the fun in that?) I signed A Boy and His Dragon as if I were Bertie autographing books. Why can't Rhoades sign some books?

Still with me? Sorry. Scattered thinking today. But um, yes, July 7 for the release date. July 12 for my Meet the Author thing on Goodreads (not nervous about that at all oh wait I am actually incredibly nervous and trying not to think about it.)

In other news, Dreamspinner has a new Author Arcade feature going up, in which you can access information about the author more easily, including links to social media and all that. I haven't filled out my profile yet (shocker) but I will. :)

I also submitted a novella-ish Being(s) in Love story a few weeks ago. So hopefully they will want that and soon you will get to read about the baking werewolf in love. Then I am finishing up getting Little Wolf ready for submission (which, okay I just want it done). This exciting!! Even if, somehow, it ended up at about 360 pages. (!!!) This is too many pages. I know this. It's a nightmare and yet they are so cute and precious to me. We will see.

To recap: July 7. July 12. Arcade thing. A Beginner's Guide to Wooing Your Mate. Little Wolf.


And um, sorry about my crazy. Here:

Tim watched Nathaniel take another steadying breath, then quickly glanced away when Nathaniel opened his eyes again. Tim wondered if he knew how Tim had been studying him, because his voice was as warm as his scent. “May I touch you?”

Tim had to be hearing things wrong. He tugged at his ears. “What? You’re asking to touch me?” He recognized that Nathaniel was trying to respect his feelings but that wasn’t a request Tim could be expected to answer calmly. He licked his mouth. “Yeah okay, sure, why not?” He could do breezy, really. Breathless-breezy, tense with anticipation-breezy. “Knock yourself out, you beautiful weirdo.”

Nathaniel crossed the rest of the space and stopped in front of him. Then he reached out and let his palm rest on Tim’s neck. “Beautiful weirdo?” he echoed, almost tenderly, and Tim pulled in a quiet breath. Nathaniel brushed his hand up over Tim’s throat, his fingertips trailing over Tim’s skin before he took his hand away.
thatrcooper: (elizabeth hug by someone)



By LC Chase. Sinful, sinful Rhoades. Ready to take Wicklow on an odyssey (in his pants, aaaw yeah).

So, as far as I know, all the editing and everything is done. Due out for sale... some time in July. I have no idea when exactly yet. Will let you know.

But speaking of July, I will be doing a "Meet the Author" for Dreamspinner in July, at Goodreads. I am... slightly terrified. I've never done anything like that. But I figure I can try it out, and if no one shows up or if (when) I do something awkward, I can drown my sorrows after, right? I kind of predict a few people showing up, mostly just to yell at me for all the unfinished and unpublished Beings stories on my hard drive.

Er, speaking of which. So I finally finished a complete draft of Little Wolf, then decided it was so long (so, so long!) because I had to explain the town it's set in. So I wrote a short story to explain the town. ...Which somehow became a novella. So now there's a random novella I hadn't planned on and I still need to edit down Little Wolf. Also I can't decide if the novella needs an epilogue. But at that length it would really be more of a small novel, and how the hell did I accidentally write a small novel about characters who didn't exist a month ago??? How is this my life? How is this my brain?

So. That happened. Werewolf. Wizard. Slight misunderstanding. Some brownies. I don't even know anymore. It has no plot, you guys. It's just soft pining for 57k. And meanwhile, there Little Wolf sits. Impatient. Glaring at me. Tapping his itty bitty foot. (He's not actually itty bitty.)

SIGH. But hey, in the meantime, if you guys feel like discussing your favorite magical shifter type romances, http://rainbowgoldreviews.wordpress.com/ is having a chat/discussion about them this weekend. I was invited but I have real world job (ick) and cannot attend. Someone should go represent dragons though. :)


Read more for presonal crap. )

Now.

Personal moment. Something to learn about me is that sometimes I disappear. It can be an introversion thing, or a focus on writing thing, but it can also be a negative thoughts/bad mental place thing. Sometimes it's a combination of all of those. The upside? I've been writing and editing a lot. The downside? Well, is the downside. Also I'm not really in the best place to judge what I've written when this happens. I only mention it because I'm never sure how much of an author's issues people want to hear about, or what is expected of an author's presence online, but I prefer to be honest about stuff like this. I can't be happy and upbeat all the time and I usually try to avoid posting when I'm like that. But I'm not hiding it, so much as I don't want to bring others down too. But, yeah, I vanish once in a while. jsyk.
thatrcooper: (sleepy holly by holly_ita)
You know when you have all the ideas and you just want to write everything and you can't because that just isn't possible but also because of Other Things and Real Life?

SIGH.

Hi! No, I haven't fallen off the face of the earth. I've been focused on finally (FUCKING FINALLY) finishing a draft of Little Wolf. (Or whatever I decide to call it.) Talk about a story that got away from me. Oy! The thing is almost 400 pages so yes, I need to edit that a lot. Unfortunately I can't edit it right now because I'm busy editing Wicklow's Odyssey for your consideration and that is a lot of work too. So much work. At least Wicklow and Rhoades are lovely. (And the others, who really need porn of their own. I mean... romances of their own... and then porn. Then after I think about all that fun stuff I get to worrying that Wicklow and Rhoades and their story might be too weird for people. I think it's lovely but I'm such a nerd. And dork. Dorky nerd. My Tumblr is testament to this.)

The point being, never fear I have been working. And of course, the CUTEST fairy story popped into my head during all of this because I can't write it right now and that is always the way. (BUT HIS NAME IS TULIP AND I LOVE HIM. TULIP THE SOMEWHAT SHY FAIRY.HE NEEDS ALL THE PETS AND CUDDLES IN THE WORLD. FLOWER CROWNS MIGHT BE INVOLVED. I NEED TO STOP THE CAPSLOCK NOW, I KNOW. ahem.)

My brain might be a little fried from nonstop writing/editing. This is very possible. I apologize. Also, hey, everyone. I think Wicklow comes out in June or July. I want to be writing and I can't right now. That's all. Update over. :)
thatrcooper: (pye pye pyewacket by rani)
Audiobook has arrived! The one for A Boy and His Dragon has, I mean. A Boy and His Dragon at Audible (Confession: I get the giggly squeals when I try to listen to my own words being read out loud. I am blushing right now.)

In other news, it occurs to me that those not into the geeky online things might not realize what AUs are. I write a lot of AUs of my own characters, usually in unedited little snippets to amuse the people who follow me on Tumblr. For example, I posted a short Bakery AU of Ray and Cal from Some Kind of Magic for Kristi P for Valentine's Day. An AU is a story set in an alternate universe from the one in which the original story is set. I tend to still consider AUs Original, in a sense, (because change one fact about a character and you change the character) but it's not really a point I'd argue because mostly AUs are supposed to be fun. :) Though to make it even more confusing, sometimes I just label them "crackfic"... which they basically are. A cracky, nutty version of a story you already know.

I mention this now because every once in a while I will read a comment from someone very confused or someone will remind me that not everyone is a giant geek like me and so people don't always speak my language. If anyone ever doesn't know what the hell I'm talking about, feel free to ask me so I convert you to a giant geek too.

Anyway! AUs. I love my characters and I love variations of them because it's interesting to see how a slightly different background can entirely change the way a story would go. I tend to write fuzzy little AUs just to make me smile but if you want to know more about them, may I suggest Wikipedia? (Obvious caveat that Wikipedia is Wikipedia and always open for debate and editing.)

(Oh my though, modern AU of My Man Godric in which Godric is the head of security for a rich, old, noble family and Bertie is the public scapegrace, always in the tabloids, usually caught staring adoringly at Godric. It's really quite embarrassing. And I still think about that AU of Play It Again, Charlie in which Will gets to know Charlie while he's still recovering in the hospital. I think about that one when I need some angst.)

I forgot my point. I guess, just... look at these idiots.

Ray the baking werewolf and Cal the besotted customer


This was originally an unedited Tumblr post. Original notes have been left in.

(I bet he makes savory pies and quiches filled with ham and croissants rich with butter. I bet someone else normally makes all the sweet, delicate things, like someone else normally works the counter. But one day Penn, who runs the register and does their books, has to go do some family thing with her mother and since it's a slow day she tells Ray he has to come out to help customers if anyone rings the bell.)

He was right in the middle of preparing the beef for some spicy mini beef pies, done Louisiana style, when someone rang the bell and it didn't put him in the best mood. He only had so much time to get some prepared for their lunch rush. He'd ask Murphy to go deal with the customer but Murphy had a special order of lemon tarts to complete. Someone had ordered them at the last minute. Ray was not fond of people who made huge, demanding orders at the last minute. Penn tried to remind him that business was business, but some customers needed a basic understanding that their bakery was not a McDonald's. Things took time, even with the occasional magical assistance.

In his nose was an irritating mix of lemon and onion which did not improve his mood as he pushed through the bat-wing swinging doors that led to the main room. He knew there was a frown on his face but he couldn't be bothered to care.

What did make him pause was the reaction from the fairy waiting by the counter.

"Oh, a face like that should not be scowling so," the fairy remarked, tilting his head back to study Ray with wide, swirling eyes of brown and purple and green. The colors made Ray think of Mardi Gras, and King's Cake, and frosting.

Ray didn't usually care for frosting but for a moment he licked his lips at the imagined taste of sugar. Then the fairy spoke again. "Then again the frown suits you. You're a were, aren't you? Maybe fierce is exactly how you should look." The fairy was not subtle in looking Ray over, but then they never were.

"Can I help you?" It came out a lot crankier than it should have. Penn would have had something to say about that if she'd heard it. Ray shrugged it off and didn't apologize or explain his frown. The fairy would forget about it in a few minutes anyway once he got some sugar.

He was actually pretty low-key for a fairy, with much smaller wings than usual, as if he was part human. He even had a shirt on, unbuttoned to reveal a bare chest glowing with health and sparkles, but still a shirt.

Ray headed over to the pastry counter after a moment's hesitation. The fairy wasn't going to want anything savory and he probably wouldn't want a whole cake, but a box filled with individual pastries was always a fairy favorite.

"So you're finally out here." The fairy's gaze darted to Ray's apron, coated in flour as well as hints of blood from the meat. "Oh, Ray," he realized out loud and then stopped. He twirled his wrist and looked slightly guilty as he explained. "Penn talks about you."

"She does?" It was not what Ray meant to say at all but he fought off a blush and stared back at his winged admirer as impassively as he could. The fairy--half-fairy, smiled at him. It was possibly the kindest smile Ray had ever seen.

"Penn is wonderful," the fairy offered with that same beaming smile. Ray thought Penn was wonderful too. She had never once scoffed at a werewolf living in a city and working as a baker. He loved Penn. He had no idea why he'd frown harder to hear that the fairy liked her too.

"She thinks the world of you, you know." The fairy leaned forward, putting his slender hands gracefully along the top of the glass case, sending glitter raining down the lace doily underneath the display of cupcakes that Penn kept out to tempt the lunch crowd. Ray realized his hands were also on the glass counter but couldn't remember having moved forward. Yet there he was, the glitter almost close enough to touch him.

He could hear Murphy swearing at his crust in the kitchen but the sound seemed far away, drowned out by his own heart in his eyes and the rapid, hummingbird beat of the fairy's heart right in front of him. He inhaled, noting a new scent, like fresh caramel and cinnamon, overlaid with a desire that somehow surprised him despite the fact that this was a fairy, and fairies were, well, given to showing desire openly and often.

"You talk about me?" Ray could not believe himself. He didn't know what had come over him. If anything he was known for not talking. Now he was asking stupid questions in a hoarse voice and he felt hot, hotter than usual, hotter than the kitchen at its busiest.

The fairy danced from foot to foot as he nodded. "I asked her and she was only too happy to talk about you."

Ray blinked. His head was swimming. His vision seemed to sharpen on the increasingly bright cloud of glitter around the fairy. He thought the fairy's mouth was the most beautiful mouth he'd ever seen. He considered whether, being half-human, the fairy might like one of his pies, or at least a croissant. Ray would fill it with dark chocolate and dip it in cream if the fairy would prefer it that way. Ray would feed it to him himself, anything to keep him smiling and happy.

He shook his head but the scent only got stronger, like crisp meringue and caramelized pears.
"You see," the fairy began again, leaning in and staring at Ray as though Ray was one of the bon bons on the shelves below, "I catch a glimpse of you from time to time, and you and your frowns are the shiniest thing I have ever seen. But you never come out. Not once. Not ever. And then Penn said--"
"Yes?" Ray was growling and too distracted to be embarrassed about it.

"Penn said she'd make you come out. As a favor to me. And to you. She said, 'The wolf needs to indulge his sweet tooth' and grinned and told me to come in today."

"And you remembered?" Ray couldn't keep the surprise out of his tone.

The fairy's smile was only a little saddened by his rudeness. "When it comes to what matters, Ray, fairies remember everything."

"And I matter?" Ray took another long breath. Hope was sweet and light like powdered sugar. He didn't know what that meant.

The fairy danced in front of him again, though wriggled might have been a better word. "You matter so much I put on clothes," he offered, wrinkling his nose in a way that made Ray feel even warmer.

"I wouldn't have asked you to do that," he murmured, only to hitch his shoulders at the fairy's delighted laugh.

"I knew I would like you, Ray." It wasn't something Ray should argue with. Weres also tended to like or dislike others immediately, although based more on scent than any "shininess".

"You don't know me," he argued anyway, inhaling so much want/want/want that he pulled at his apron. He wanted to lean closer so he did, forgetting lemon and onion in order to breathe in blackberry jam and spiced peaches and rosewater. There was a sweat too, human scent, man scent, and the combination made him flush. The fairy smelled like the best things in the world.

"That's easy enough to fix, isn't it?" The fairy stuck out his hand. "I'm Cal.

His hand was warm. His glitter was like being sprinkled with chocolate dust. And he smiled when Ray brought his wrist up to his mouth.

...


Still fierce Ray, but not nearly so, er, dickish about fairies uptight because he isn't a cop and doesn't have all those pressures on him. I imagine they were almost kissing by the end of that encounter and on a date/screwing shortly afterward. Maybe they make it through one date first. Then everyone at the bakery has to deal with Ray, ridiculously in love and Mated. Aw.

To sum up, I am weird. I write weird little things. People can always write me and ask me what the hell I'm doing if it's too weird. :) Also, SHINY NEW AUDIOBOOK!

(Also, apologies if this really is obvious to you. I just noticed several comments from confused people recently and didn't want them to continue being confused.) :):):)
thatrcooper: (stephen by aixsponsa)
I never know what to say in these blog posts. Sure, if you want fannish squeeing and random pictures of food and porn there's always my Tumblr, but an author-y blog posts people are supposed to be more author-y, have things to say about writing or the world in general that aren't just notices about upcoming release dates, all that. Only honestly I know next to nothing about the publishing world, and I feel like everything else comes out in my stories anyway. What does that leave? Just the updates. *sigh* But, you know, they are exciting to me and exciting things are fun to share.

First things first, everyone knows I posted a free short story, right? Well, I did. It features a slightly cracky (a lot cracky) fairy tale version of two characters who have been TORMENTING ME FOR OVER A YEAR NOW.

Ahem. I suppose that is something to talk about. Some stories are like that. You know exactly what is going on and you're compelled to write them as quickly as you can get the words out and you remain obsessed with them even once you are done. Wicklow and Rhoades were like that for me. But other stories are just a big mess. They keep growing and nothing ends up as you originally planned until you finally make yourself finish after many stops and starts and then suddenly it's exactly how you wanted it. But different. Will and Charlie were more like that. Er, Nathaniel and Tim are apparently like that as well. They insisted on writing themselves and that is always a struggle.

And can I tell you how much I regret giving werewolves quick healing powers and a fast refractory period? And how much I regret writing a sexual frustrated, *incredibly* confused young werewolf? Because I have spent hours upon hours upon hours writing porn and I'm not done yet! At least they have kind of reached an understanding, the two of them. Soon Tim might even understand what cuddles are.

(He needs lessons. Wicklow, now, you could give Wickow cuddle lessons and he'd still stare at you like you're crazy... So, I write characters with space and touching issues. So I write characters with issues. Ah well. That isn't news.)

Hmm. Updates. So. Wicklow and Rhoades were accepted (yaaaaaaay!) Preliminary title: Wicklow's Odyssey. That might change. Expect Civil War Steampunk sometime in July or early August.

Meanwhile, I was sent notices that audiobooks are going to happen for both, "A Boy and His Dragon" and "Play It Again, Charlie." I even got to listen to some samples. That was thrilling! And anxiety-inducing. And strange. And fantastic. And I don't generally listen to audiobooks so I hope those turn out okay. I will let you guys know what they are coming out.

I continue to write Tim and Nathaniel (working title(s): Little Wolf. Or The Alpha of Wolf's Paw. Or What Wolves Do. Or... something chess related. Because when you think werewolves, you think, chess.) Getting closer to the end. Woo hoo! I still don't know what to do about my short Beings stories. I want to write a few more and put them all together, but then again I don't know if Dreamspinner would want that. I'm such a weird writer.

And um, oh hey. Conventions and things. Fun? Something people in more than a hang around the comic book booths kind of way? What kind of conventions do people go to where they want to interact with authors? *Do* they want to interact with authors? (Or m/m authors for that matter?) What's that like? I have only ever gone to one convention and it was a very large one and very expensive and well... I did not enjoy it much despite my nerdiness. So I am trying to see the appeal. They aren't something you can explore on a whim when you are on a budget.

Depends on what you want to get out of them I suppose. y/y? y/n?
thatrcooper: (pye pye pyewacket by rani)
So... I was writing Christmas snippets for people on Tumblr while also editing Little Wolf and someone asked for a fairy tale and what was meant to be a short thing turned into a slightly longer story.

Ah. Me and my weird brain.

Anyway, so, Little Wolf is an unfinished novel about a very confused little werewolf finding his mate and for whatever reason, he reminds me and Selenographics of a cracky fairy tale about a princess locked in a tower. Which is probably how this happened.

Little Prince
(The Little Wolf Fairy Tale AU)

Summary: Prince Timothy is betrothed to Prince Nathaniel, who is handsome and kind and perfect. It's awful.




Read more... )
thatrcooper: (paris by cunningcroft)
For everyone as broke as me--COUPONS! You get a coupon! And you get a coupon! I'm throwing coupons at you!

They're for stories up on Smashwords, but still, coupons. (And remember, there are free stories up on Smashwords too. FREE! THE BEST THING!)

Treat yo' self! Personally I have a hard time spending money on myself. Sometimes it helps when there is a sale. In this case, 50% off! *sings like Donna and Tom Haverford* Treat Yo Self 2013!

Coupon Code for With Everything I Have is CH88S

Coupon Code for Ideas of Sin (for the brave who are into pirateses and rough sex and 1600s religious debate and things) is LD78Q

Both good until January 6, because I like the sound of Twelfth Night. And don't forget the free ones. Freeeee! Have fun.

Meanwhile, people, so all I seem to want to do is write short stories about Wicklow and Rhoades and that is no fun for anyone since I don't even know if Dreamspinner wants them. (ah the nervewracking wait for a response) What should I do if they don't? Smashwords them? Amazon? Hmm I also kind of want to write a cracky alternate universe story with Tim and Nathaniel where Tim in a prince(ss) trapped in a very tall tower (until he escapes) and Nathaniel is the long suffering knight trying to help him/get laid.

Poor Nathaniel, he never gets laid. At least not by Tim.

I am really failing at short stories for the Christmas season. Hmm... maybe John and Rennet at Christmastime? Oh shit. I don't think anyone knows John and Rennet either. Well boo. I swear I've been writing. Just... I've been working on long things and short stories that don't really have a home. (yet) Sorry. Have an excerpt while I continue to plug away.


A little bit of Kazimir the Firebird.


Read more... )

"That was quite a show," remarked a voice from the shadows, and Kazimir angled his head toward his audience. His head still ached, but he kept his chin up while the man came forward until his toes were on the edge of Kazimir's soft circle of light. His audience was a man of average height, handsome, though part of his face was hidden by an unfashionable growth of beard and a small mustache. Curls of brown fell into his face where they were not tucked behind his ears, and glasses hid his eye color, but his clothes were plain, a shirt and pants, with braces, or suspenders as Americans called them. He was American too, though his French accent was better. Kazimir had the impression of a direct gaze before the man glanced away again. His lips were full and pliant.

"At the theater tonight, or what just took place on my balcony?" Kazimir stared at him, waiting for the man to look at him again, wondering why he would look anywhere else with Kazimir in the room with him.

"That." The emphasis in the word was almost amusing. "What just took place. Though I also thought your performance tonight was incredible. Not everyone gets an opera written for them, not everyone deserves it."

He implied that Kazimir did, which Kazimir already knew. But Kazimir nodded after a moment, and the man took a drink from his own glass. It held something brown, with ice. The man swallowed with evident pleasure and then said nothing, continuing to keep his eyes from Kazimir.

"You should not capture a Firebird," Kazimir addressed the topic at hand, and watched soft lips open on what could have been a silent laugh. His glow was flattering to the man's cheekbones, the light olive tone to his cheeks.

"Should not?" The stranger moved and Kazimir got a hint of dark eyes narrowed in thought. "Was that act for his benefit then?"

"If not his then for the next creature he tries to buy." Kazimir shrugged and sighed loudly at the stillness from the man opposite him. "You have more to say? You think I was cruel? That he did not deserve rejection?"

The man considered him over the wire rim of his glasses, direct and indirect at once. Kazimir knew he was being studied, and yet could not catch the man's gaze. The strange, somewhat insolent human took another drink of his brown booze. "You didn't have much respect for his feelings."

Kazimir surprised himself by letting out a short, icy laugh "He should have had respect for mine."

"Were yours clear?" If possible, the man seemed equally amused, though Kazimir did not understand why he should be, unless he found Kazimir himself funny. The human could have been one of those men who feigned disgust at things like magic or the blended world that magical creatures lived in, where human morals and customs did not apply. He barely looked over thirty, but it was not only old men who regarded fairies and demons with hatred and loathing. Lately many seemed to, as if the problems of the world were to be laid at their door, as if beings of magic had been the ones destroying banks and dividing countries up into arbitrary pieces.

Kazimir drew himself up and curled one hand into a fist, two remaining pearls hard in his palm. "What responsibility is it of mine to make my feelings clear? My feelings are mine." His voice was clear, the little American would not argue. Kazimir kept on. "He was told no. It is not my fault he did not listen."

He let out a puff of air and wished for more vodka. It was a long time before he thought of speaking again, but when the American did not say a word, he chose to answer with silence, and so they stood. Then the American shifted forward again, coming further into Kazimir's light but stopping before Kazimir had to step back. Kazimir wondered if the man had seen him shudder away earlier, or if this human had simply been raised with better manners. He inclined his head, as though granting Kazimir the point, but did not admit his fault aloud.

Kazimir felt something, not altogether fear, slide down his back. He frowned and made his smile cold. "Human men in general do not give ground until forced to," he pronounced, bitter and unsurprised, and wondered if a mere glimpse of his neck would be enough to undo this one, or if more would be required.

The American stared to the side for a moment longer, then took another drink. He gave Kazimir a short look, then snorted and spoke in English. "Fucking true enough," he remarked, "we will defend to the last man salients of no value to avoid the appearance of retreat."

It was a confusing statement, one Kazimir was not entirely sure he translated correctly. Before he could ask, the American went on, growing warmer at the subject or from his liquor. "Not to say you have no value, or that you are a piece of land. Merely agreeing with you. It's difficult to let go. It can be difficult." He scowled down at his glass.

"You are drunk." Kazimir was neither amused or shocked, though he was not certain why he bothered commenting. His guests were currently swimming in gin.

"Usually," the American hummed a little, a piece from the opera tonight, "I usually am, when not working. May I ask you something?" He paused. "Did you not like the pearls? The gesture was beautifully executed, and I applauded, but outside of this apartment people are hungry."

"And the inhuman creature throws away pearls while the bread lines grow." Kazimir looked down to straighten his robe and when he raised his eyes, the American was looking right back at him. It took him too long to speak again. "Perhaps I prefer diamonds." He held the man's gaze even with the touch of electricity down his back and the ache in his bones. "Do you have diamonds?" he ducked his head to inhale greedily, and glanced up, an unrivalled courtesan. He swept a look over the American's clothes, noting the lack of starch in the shirt as if it had been worn a few times since its last cleaning. It might be the man's only dress shirt. Kazimir clucked his tongue pityingly and straightened. "I don't think you do," he sighed as if bored and waited. When insulted, some dogs licked your hand, others bit.

This dog tilted his head to one side. "You want diamonds? Common diamonds?" He seemed unwilling to admit the possibility that anyone would see a diamond as anything other than a shiny stone, though he returned the same sweeping look Kazimir had given him.

Kazimir felt himself go still. The human pretended not to see, though he must have.

"No, rubies surely. You must have been offered rubies too," the American went on, then wrinkled his nose and gave Kazimir another of his brief, searching looks. "Forgive me but as much as I can see you in jewels, your own natural beauty would render them redundant. You're handsome, yes, your jaw, your shoulders, your tapered waist and straight nose, but mostly… beautiful. Beautiful is the only word that suits you, or, I should say, it is the only word that comes to mind that wouldn't embarrass me."

"So you offer me no jewels at all?" Kazimir could have played coy, accepted the compliment and whatever money the man did have. He intended to, but the words came escaped him in a lilt, a graceful humming note when there should have been a blast of sound.

"Flowers. Those I would give you, if I had the money to, which I don't." The American nodded and took another drink. Kazimir could not tell if he meant it at all; the man looked at him in the same way as before, direct and then from the side, strangely shy. He was a schoolboy until he spoke.

"Roses?" Kazimir angled his head up and let out a pointed, light yawn. His heart would not slow. "Orchids?"

"Mere weeds!" the American scoffed, serious or playful, Kazimir could not determine, and did not allow himself to react though the American went on, "painted blooms in paper coffins, cut and wrapped and stuffed into a vase for display. No, not those. Not for you."

"What then?" Kazimir leaned back against a wrought-iron stand, velvety fern fronds tickling his bare skin. He put his wrist to his forehead like a film actress. The American's breath seemed to leave him in a rush, and when Kazimir looked, the man was watching him, earnestly now, if he had not been before.

"Wild flowers, the kind I have only ever seen in fields in Belgium. The kinds that grow on this continent no matter what is done to the land. Cascading colors so bright they're obscene. Blooms so beautiful they make you forget that even flowers fight for survival. Wild flowers, hardier than anything grown in a nursery. I'd make you a crown of them."

"Free flowers then?" Kazimir countered, his hand falling to his throat, though the weight of the pearls was long gone. The American threw his head back and laughed. It was too loud from drink, but still a rich, pleased sound that drew attention. A few people stopped at the doorway to peek at them.

"No jewels and no flowers will please you, Monsieur Firebird?" He was charming now suddenly, this American, leaving Kazimir to stare and wonder where his shyness had gone.

"I have never asked for them," he insisted, still with his hand at his throat, and the man dropped his crooked smile before Kazimir had even fully realized it was there.

"So you throw them away as though they are nothing?" He was gruff but quiet, and once again Kazimir could not tell if he was joking. He could not ask any more than he could ask for stories of these fields where wild flowers grew. He had traveled by train many years ago but had never stopped to look out at farmland turned grey with trenches and rain. He took a breath.

"That is no way to talk, Monsieur L'Américain, not if you wish to win a firebird." He was not drunk, but he sang it out, so sweetly it seemed a mockery.

The American frowned. "You said I should not--" he started, but was cut off by the arrival of Michel, who turned on the lights as he strode in. The American shut his eyes for a moment and swore, in the crude manner that seemed his habit. "Fuck."

Kazimir took a moment to study him in the light, from the shine in his brown curls to the dull scuff of his shoes. His trousers were recently ironed, but frayed, and a tarnished watch was ready to fall from his pocket. His lips were indeed yielding and pink, but held lines at the corners that spoke of pain. He was no schoolboy, but older than thirty, though not much. He was thin, and his skin had a tint of its own, as if good food and sun were all that were needed to make him beautiful, and perhaps a shave. He was not a picture of health. His skin was dotted with sweat despite the chill, like a human, a tipsy human without much money who had not eaten a solid meal in some time.
thatrcooper: (pye pye pyewacket by rani)
Because sometimes you just need a story about awkward flirting over a coffee counter.

Medium, Sweet, Extra shot of Geek

Well... because sometimes I do, I guess, and I hope other people do as well. Look at that cover though, how sweet is that cover? Tina keeps putting little hearts on there to embarrass Tavio but secretly he likes seeing them I think, or he would say something.



In other news, I am 3/4... slightly over 3/4 actually, done with this current weird steampunk I am writing and then back to fairy tales! Up next after the Firebird, it's Granny and Grumpus, the story of the awkward keeper of a dark garden and the, um, rather crude werewolf who loves him. Or something. If one can trust werewolves with their crazy instincts. Carnivorous plants are so much more trustworthy.

But first! Back to Civil War spying shenanigans! (And dorky dorks flirting in a coffeeshop). I meant to do fairy things first, but Civil War thing took over my brain. Weird how that happens. Nothing and then everything all at once. Why can't I write faster?!! (agony! torment! feelings!)

...Okay yes too much coffee.
thatrcooper: (paris by cunningcroft)
Note: This short was a birthday gift to the lovely Yolandaash.

Summary: Frangipani is a fairy with a problem; he has a found a human that shines like no other, but he can't seem to get that human to notice him.


Frangipani and the Very Shiny Boy


Read more... )


"Hey there," Frangipani began, only to immediately fall silent, because wow, way to sound like an idiot. Thankfully, there wasn't so much as a twitch from the boy he'd been trying to talk to, the impossibly cute human boy deeply engrossed in his book, so if Frangi wanted, he could slip away right now in a flutter of wings and humiliation.



He would have, if that hadn't been what he'd done last time, and the time before that, and the time before that. Just thinking of it made Frangi let out a small whimper and slink back to his wrought-iron table in the café's patio, where his vanilla-caramel-mocha with a dash of praline syrup was waiting for him. It was his sixth of the morning, and at this rate, he was going to burn through his college money in coffee alone.



Maybe if the shiniest human he had ever laid eyes on didn't come to this coffee shop everyday for what must be his downtime between classes, and maybe if that human didn't sit outside so the breeze could stir his light hair and make it fall in front of his eyes so he would absently brush it away as he kept reading, and maybe if he didn't always get the cheapest drip coffee to save money but then drop a quarter in the tip jar, then Frangi could give up and fly away and get his sugar somewhere else.



But he wasn't so lucky. In fact, he'd swear he'd been cursed with this. This, this condition, as he was starting to call it. The stuttering tongue, the cold uncertainty in his stomach, the heat in his cheeks. He knew what humans called this, but he wasn't human, and he knew that couldn't be the case. The human was simply very shiny, so shiny that Frangi was kind of amazed that every other Being on campus wasn't as drawn to him as he was. It was strange enough to him that the other humans didn't seem to see anything special about this boy.



Frangi thought him beautiful. Handsome, yeah, but Frangi had always had a weakness for a human male with a strong jaw. He fluttered a little closer at the thought, trying to display his body as best he could despite shivering every few moments. The fall days were colder than he liked. Most fairies did not take well to cold, and Frangi's kind, used to tropical climates, suffered more than most. Winter was on its way, but he did not want to think of that now, and stretched in the open air to feel the sun soak into his skin.



The sun perked him up more than his morning's intake of sugar and he raised his face toward it, stilling his wings and then extending them to absorb the heat. His wings were sheer white, tipped with a yellow-gold, the same yellow-gold that swirled through his brown eyes and tinted his black hair. He had tucked a white flower behind his ear that morning, full of hope and determination that today would be the day he got this human's attention.



Sure, okay, he'd swiped the flower from a professor's garden, but if the humans didn't want fairies taking their flowers, they should allow gardens in the on-campus housing. And the flower made him look good.



Better. It made him look better. Fairies already looked good, especially to humans, and Frangipani was no exception. If past experience was anything to go by, Frangipani was even more of a draw to these mainland humans with his warm brown skin and sunny smile. Humans, all humans, liked him.



Except this one. The shiniest one. The one who did not smile, but wore ragged, thin jeans, ratty sneakers, and thick glasses with a scratch in the lens. The one who had a pink mouth and kind eyes, and skin that burned in the sun, and who shined, shined so brightly that silver lights streaked around him when he moved. He was different, that shine said, he was special, and Frangipani wanted him.



He wanted him so much he had accepted this daily shame of coming here to stare at him, which was something fairies did not do, because they did not have to do it. They were beautiful, and the beautiful do not pine.



His sister, the Lit major back at the University of Hawai'i might disagree, and quote a fairy poem of longing at him, but he could never tell her about this. She would never let him hear the end of it.



Frangi let out a sigh and dropped his head. The boy, his boy, looked up, giving him one startled, blue-eyed glance that said clearly he thought he'd been alone out on the chilly patio, then swept a look over Frangi's bare chest before quickly ducking back down over his book.



Frangipani sighed again and flopped down in the nearest chair. He put his chin in his hands and stared morosely at the rosy color painting the human's cheeks, which was a positively lovely sight. Frangi must have embarrassed him. Yes, it was a little cold to be walking around bare-chested, but anyone who had been around fairies before should be used to that, and Frangi had a very nice chest.



A sweatshirt would have been nice though. The one his boy was wearing seemed especially comfortable. Frangi wanted to sit on his lap and slide his hands underneath it to feel bare skin. He could apologize for his cold fingers with a kiss, something soft, just there, under the human's ear, and laugh if it tickled and he finally got the boy to smile. The boy rarely smiled. Obviously he was working hard at school, but if he had friends, Frangi never saw them. He'd pulled out a phone a few times and texted back and forth, but Frangi had never heard it ring, or overheard him make plans on a Friday night. He'd never even heard him laugh out loud.



"I bet your laugh is amazing," Frangipani told him softly, unsurprised when that got no response. The boy continued to frown down at a gigantic chem text. Frangi was half a second away from doing the Bend and Snap out of desperation, and wouldn't his roommates think that was hilarious? Rooming with other fairies had its downside, even if they did understand his lack of a sleep schedule and inability to stay dressed for the periods of time that humans seemed to need to stay dressed.



Clothing wasn't natural; there was no way around it. But Frangi looked at the boy's university sweatshirt again and imagined it draped over him in the library while he waited for the boy to finish his studying so they could go out.



Which was a thought that made him pause, because he wanted to roll around naked with this human. He didn't want to date him. He didn’t even know him, and anyway, he was too young to be settling down. Frangi had decades before he had to start considering settling down, especially with a human. But then he wondered if the boy liked flowers, or boys, or fairies.



"Can’t you just look up and see me and drag me away for sex?" Frangipani asked, though there was no one around. If the boy was shy, as humans tended to be when it came to things like public fucking, than they could go somewhere else, but Frangi would have been fine out here on the patio, slipping down to suck him off under the table, or straddling his lap to kiss him, or bending him over a table to trust between his pale, skinny thighs until they were rosy too. Maybe the boy liked to top, maybe he was fierce and strong and he'd kiss back hard and tug Frangi close by his hair. Maybe….



What was the use, Frangi thought, and stood up, loudly scraping his chair against the cement and stalking back over to his coffee, which he drained in a gulp while wishing he could get drunk and forget everything the way humans did.



He gathered up his things and slung his bag over one shoulder and decided that no matter how tempted he was, tomorrow he'd get his coffee somewhere else. The pastries weren't even that good here. He had to pour sugar on top of his donuts to make them edible.



Of course, feeling so resolved didn't keep him from turning around to get one last look at the shiny boy--or from jumping in surprise to find the shiny boy standing a foot away and looking right at him.



Frangi made an embarrassingly squeaky noise and flew backwards into the table, knocking his paper cup to the ground, though he didn't risk bending over to get it. At this rate he'd probably fall on his ass.



His wings were racing faster than the rush of his heart, but he did his best to lean against his wobbling table and look like a graceful fairy of legend, or at least like a sexy potential hook up at a bar. His stomach flipped uncontrollably, but he ignored it, and smiled widely.



The boy's lips parted at his smile, but he frowned without smiling back. He focused on Frangipani's mouth for a moment, his eyebrows in a tight line, and then he raised a hand. Between two of his fingers was the flower Frangi had tucked behind his ear that morning. Frangi reached up automatically to feel for it at his ear, but realized it was gone. He hadn't really expected a haole from the mainland to understand what he was trying to say with that flower, but he still felt stupid to know that it must have fallen to the ground sometime during today's attempt to get the guy's attention.



"Sorry," he mumbled, feeling even more like a dumbass when the guy frowned harder at him. But he accepted the flower with the lightest, most careful touch he could manage with the boy this close. Despite his efforts, their fingers touched. He shivered, and thought it was his imagination that the silver, shining light around the boy seemed to flare brighter.



That was the sun playing with his aura of fairy glitter, he told himself, but held his breath when the boy didn't move away. There was still that pink blush in his cheeks, slowly spreading to his ears the longer he stood there. Frangipani hesitated with the flower in his hand, then slipped it over his ear, only to be completely taken aback when the boy stared at it with wide eyes and then at Frangi's mouth a second before he dropped his head. His blush went from pink to red, and he was so close it felt like sunlight. Frangi cupped his cheek without thinking then remembered he was dealing with a human, and humans tended to be awkward about that kind of thing, the way they were about clothes, and sugar, and the natural beauty that fairies had to offer. He pulled his hand away and then stood there, waiting for the boy look back at him.



He could do this. He could speak. "Howzit? I mean, hi! I mean, nice day," he blurted, and briefly closed his eyes at his own stupidity. "I sound like an idiot," he complained a second later. "Talking isn't something I have much practice with, not to get someone to sleep with me. That makes me sound like a jerk, doesn't it?" He pushed out a breath and wondered why his human was glancing from his mouth to his eyes with such startled intensity. "Maybe you just don't like fairies, huh?" he pondered aloud, more to himself since the guy still hadn't answered him. "Or maybe you want a fairy who is less of a dork. My sister always called me a dork. And the kids in high school. Maybe it's true." Frangipani huffed at the memory and got his wings under control at last. He looked deep into ocean blue eyes, past the scratch in the right lens of the guy's glasses. "I still talk plenty though, eh? Sorry."



"No!" The human burst out, almost too loud for just the two of them, and frowned so deeply that Frangipani wanted to apologize again. He must have had a weird look on his face anyway, because the boy shook his head and wet his lips before speaking again. "No, but please speak slower," he enunciated, still loud, and watched Frangi's mouth.



The frown on the boy's face wasn't going anywhere. Frangi studied him, totally confused, until he realized what was going on. His smile returned and he bounced back to life, extending his wings with a flash of gold glitter.



"Thank you for my flower," he said, as slowly as he could, making sure the boy could read his lips as well as his sincerity, and was warmed all over by the boy's answering grin.



The human ducked his head for a moment, like he was shy and delicious after all, but when his gaze came up it was bold and bright. "You haven't worn it before." This time he moved his hands as he spoke, using Signs, which Frangipani could only wish he understood.



Frangipani reached up to touch the petals without thinking. His wings were creating a breeze of their own, stirring the boy's hair and sending it into his eyes.



"You noticed?" Frangi nearly panted it, a dork to the core. "I mean," he tried to stay cool, "I mean, my name is..." Hesitant over the unusual word, he paused, then leaned in, "Frangipani." They were close enough to kiss. He wondered if the boy would mind and flicked a look up into his eyes, which were wide and stunned and really pretty, for a human, for anyone.



The boy's hands curled, skittering out like he had a thought he didn't share, so Frangi said it again. "Frangipani," he pronounced, then shrugged, "or just Frangi. Like most fairies, I got stuck with a flower name."



"Adam," the boy volunteered and brushed his hair impatiently from his eyes. Frangipani had wanted to do that for him, but only sighed and inched in closer.



"Adam," Frangi repeated, liking the quick, happy grin that appeared in Adam's serious face, "Hey there."





The End

thatrcooper: (stephen by aixsponsa)
I keep writing all these things and I don't know what to do with them. Weird short story things and alternate universe of existing story things. Just random ideas that don't seem to have a place, no matter how adorable I might think they are.

Short stories in the Beings universe seems to be a place my mind keeps going, though I have no idea if that sort of thing is publishable. Maybe a series of them with a unifying theme. Or no theme, just a series of short stories. (Would that be a thing people would read?) It might include existing characters or it might be all new. I wrote a thing about an imp in love the other day.

An imp! I know! It just happened.

Anyway, I'm still alive, just sort of frazzled. :)

Have an excerpt...


"Someone once told me that you were the enforcer of Mr. Summers' political will, Mr. Rennet. You should consider the source of your information," Campbell the reporter snapped back, sweating but brave. Rennet stared at him, then directed a look over at John. John was calm, even smiling faintly, which could have meant anything, but he wasn't intervening to shut Rennet up, so after a long minute, Rennet arched his eyebrows.

"Just Rennet," he corrected the reporter, in case this was on the record. "Rennet the imp. What kind of idiot would hire an imp for matters of a delicate nature? I'm an embodiment of chaos, asshole. I don't do good or evil. Didn't you learn this in school?"

"Asshole seems harsh, Rennet," John commented, taking his empty cup and setting it next to the coffee machine. Rennet would need at least two cups to feel any effects from the caffeine. John removed his coat and rolled up his sleeves before preparing a second cup, just for Rennet.

"See?" Rennet continued with his mouth dry, trying not to stare at John's forearms. "Sorry about the asshole thing, but you honestly think I take orders from this guy?"

Margery coughed around her sip of coffee.







I don't even know where my brain is anymore, but Rennet will pretty much do anything John wants, little delusional failboat that he is. He is fooling no one.
thatrcooper: (pye pye pyewacket by rani)
To those people who paid for a hard copy of "A Boy and His Dragon" and got the autographed version in which I tried to be cute, I am so sorry I am such a dork. What can you do? It's like genetic dorkiness or something, I can't seem to stop.

Also I am trying to do a sports story for Dreamspinner's Sports themed Daily Dose thing, but sports, ugh. What are they even about? :) Thank goodness that coffeebuddha is egging me on to ridiculous heights of failboat boys in love or nothing would be happening with it at all.
thatrcooper: (perv by kittie)
Hello hello! I am a silly, ridiculous person so I am terribly amused and delighted that like three of you bought my little story. Delighted I say! I dance in your general direction.

In other news, I know this is bad timing with the East Coast of the US on hurricane lockdown, but I will be without free time all week so this is me, begging you to take some cans of food down to the food donation bins in your local grocery store or to look up your area food bank online (Second Harvest is a good term to Google for this) and give a few bucks. I believe in the good in you. :)

As a reward (if you want to call it that, you might change your mind after reading) here is a snippet of what I am currently working on. Tim and Nathaniel, two werewolves who are being difficult and slow and everything (I blame Tim) but I still want them to have their happy ending.

in which tim fails to grasp the obvious )
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