Friday, October 3, 2014

Character Interview: Maurelle Auri

Time for another interview! Finally. I'm really trying to focus on Maurelle right now, because I feel like I've been ignoring her. She's gone through some changes lately -- for starters, she went from being 18 to being 16. And I just feel like I've learned a lot about what makes her tick. So, without further ado, here is Maurelle's interview! (Ooh, rhymey.)

Me: Hello, Maurelle. Thank you for letting me interview you.

Maurelle: My pleasure! Who doesn’t love a good excuse to talk about themselves?

Me: Mind if we jump right in?

Maurelle: Sounds good!

Me: What do you consider your greatest achievement?

Maurelle: Hmm… oh, that’s easy. Back in Fairyland, I helped set up this huge illusion to make The Council think that my entire family had died. It was really cool, and, you know, saved a lot of lives.

Me: That is an impressive achievement.

Maurelle: Thanks!

Me: What is your idea of perfect happiness?

Maurelle: Flying on the back of a griffin. The wind in your hair, and the world with all its troubles far below you. It’s the best feeling ever!

Me: What about now that you live in New York?

Maurelle: Now I like to go to the park and play my harp. Being outside, surrounded by trees, with people enjoying my music… it’s almost like being back at home.

Me: You really miss it, don’t you?

Maurelle: Yeah, but New York is great, too! There’s so many people and everything moves so fast. It’s exciting.

Me: What is your current state of mind?

Maurelle: Ooh, um… I dunno’. Kinda’ scattered, I guess. (laughs) But that’s nothing new. Um, just pretty cheerful. And kinda’ antsy. You know, like there’s something I’m supposed to be doing.

Me: Is there? Am I keeping you from something?

Maurelle: No, no, it’s nothing like that. It’s like… there’s something big waiting for me. But I usually feel like that. Kinda’ silly, isn’t it?

Me: Oh, I don’t think so.

Maurelle: Well, it’s nice to know at least one person thinks I’m not crazy. (laughs)

Me: What is your most treasured possession?

Maurelle: My harp. It makes me think of home -- it’s the only thing I brought with me. And I love to play!

Me: What or who is the greatest love of your life?

Maurelle: Jak. It’s probably kinda’ dorky to say my brother, but he’s just always been there for me, you know? He got me out of Fairyland and he’s protected me ever since. And he’s a total sweetheart under that ridiculously gruff act he puts on.

Me: What is your most marked characteristic?

Maurelle: My cheerfulness!

Me: That’s funny, your brother said the same thing about himself.

Maurelle: Jak??

Me: I think he was being sarcastic.

Maurelle: He usually is. He’s so funny.

Me: When and where were you happiest?

Maurelle: Back home, before everything happened. But I’m pretty happy now, if a bit stir-crazy.

Me: What is it that you most dislike?

Maurelle: Feeling useless.

Me: What is your greatest fear?

Maurelle: Wow, these questions are kinda’ personal, aren’t they?

Me: Just trying to learn as much as I can about you. It is my job.

Maurelle: I guess so. Well, I suppose I’m most afraid of losing Jak. Ok, now it sounds like we have a really weird relationship, but, well, I just lost so much family, you know? Jak’s all I have left. He’s my only family and the only one who knows what I am. I don’t know what I’d do without him.

Me: What is your greatest extravagance?

Maurelle: I spend way too much money on sugar. But I can’t help it! If I had to go a week without cookies, I think I’d probably die.

Me: Which living person do you most despise?

Maurelle: Donella Rhoswen.

Me: She’s the one who…?

Maurelle: Yup.

Me: What is your greatest regret?

Maurelle: …leaving Fairyland. I mean, I had to. I know I had to. Jak and I were just kids and there wasn’t anything we could do. I got him out of there, and that was something. But I gave up who I am. I lost our wings. And I left. The Council’s in charge of Fairyland now. Who knows what horrors are happening there? And I’m just… here. Baking cookies and playing music and…. (sighs)

Me: I’m sorry.

Maurelle: No. It’s alright. Jak and I are safe. We’ve started a new life; a great life. And it’ll only get better. I’m sure of that.

Me: What talent would you most like to have?

Maurelle: I’d kinda’ like to be able to write. You know, I’ve got so many great stories in my head -- after what I’ve been through, I should have -- but when I sit down to put them on paper, my whole brain just goes blank. Which is funny, ‘cause I’m not usually at a loss for words; you’ve probably noticed. But I can’t seem to figure out how to tell my story. Or I’d like to be able to draw, but that takes way too much patience. I guess I’ll just have to be content to play my feelings out through the harp.

Me: Do you ever write songs?

Maurelle: Music, yeah, though I don’t know much about writing it down, so I usually play my own stuff and then forget it. I couldn’t write lyrics to save my life.

Me: Where would you like to live?

Maurelle: Oh, I like it here. Maybe a bigger apartment would be nice. And, of course, I’d love to live back in Cridomus. But, you know, you take what you can get.

Me: What do you regard as the lowest depths of misery?

Maurelle: (gets quiet, a thoughtful look on her face) I dunno’…

Me: You can’t think of anything?

Maurelle: I can think of lots of things. But I prefer not to.

Me: What quality do you most like in a man?

Maurelle: Kindness.

Me: How about in a woman?

Maurelle: Probably also kindness. People should just be nice.

Me: What is the trait you most deplore in yourself?

Maurelle: Cheery questions, these. Um… I can be a bit rash. I freak Jak out sometimes by doing crazy things without thinking.

Me: What is the trait you most deplore in others?

Maurelle: Indifference. Not caring about what’s going on in other people’s lives. Not being curious.

Me: Why does that bother you so?

Maurelle: Because if no one’s ever curious, nothing will ever be discovered. And if you don’t know or care about what’s going on with the people around you, you’ll never be able to help when they need it.

Me: What do you most value in your friends?

Maurelle: Interestingness. I like people who have good stories to tell.

Me: Who are your heroes?

Maurelle: All of my family, and those who died trying to protect them.

Me: Which living person do you most admire?

Maurelle: I find that most people I meet have something to admire. We’re all struggling, you know? But people get up and they do things, every day. That’s amazing. But if I had to be specific, I’d probably say Jak again. Probably just ‘cause he’s the person I know the best. I know what his struggles are, and I see him move past them. And he takes care of me; it’s hard not to love him for that. Even if he does drive me crazy.

Me: What do you consider the most overrated virtue?

Maurelle: Patience. I’m done with it! But maybe I just need more of it…. Meh.

Me: On what occasions do you lie?

Maurelle: Whenever the truth needs sprucing up!

Me: Which words or phrases do you most overuse?

Maurelle: A lot! I’ve noticed I’ve started saying, “You know?” a lot. But I’m always picking up weird phrases and using them way too much.

Me: If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be?

Maurelle: I’d have fairy wings again. Or I’d be better at thinking things through before jumping in.

Me: What are your favorite names?

Maurelle: That’s kind of a random question after all the “dig deep into your soul” questions we’ve had! Um… I like the name Quillion. Because… Quillion. Yeah, that doesn’t actually need explaining.

Me: How would you like to die?

Maurelle: Not at all? Is that an option? If not, I’d want to die saving someone. In fact, I’d really like that. Maybe in a big battle; or maybe just shoving someone out of the way of a bus.

Me: If you were to die and come back as a person or thing, what do you think it would be?

Maurelle: A griffin! At least, I hope so. Because that would be wonderful.

Me: What is your motto?

Maurelle: “Keep smiling!” Or something corny like that. (laughs)

Me: Well, that’s it for my questions. Thanks for doing this.

Maurelle: It was fun! We’ll have to get together again and I can interview you.

Me: I look forward to it. Bye, Maurelle.

Maurelle: Goodbye~!

Questions were taken from this site. Read Jak's interview here


Thursday, September 18, 2014

I Thought I'd Healed (Suzerra)


            “You sure you don’t want to come with us?” Hereward asked as he threw on his cloak.                
            “We’re sure.” David laughed.
            “Oh, but I was looking forward to an evening of dancing, feasting, and fighting for our lives,” said Suzerra, looking up from the portraits on the mantelpiece.
            “That does sound like your kind of party,” said David.
            “I only wish we didn’t have to go,” said Jennifer, fondly adjusting her husband’s askew cloak. “But Donella always gets suspicious if we miss events.”
            “Go and have fun,” said David. “We’ll be alright here.”
            Hereward and Jennifer went off to their cotillion, leaving David and Suzerra alone. With Brian.
            “Do you think your parents left your brother here to chaperone us?” Suzerra wondered, moving to David’s side.
            David looked over at the sleeping form on the couch. “If so, he’s not doing a very good job.”
            They took good advantage of this realization. David’s parents had probably already reached the palace before David changed the subject.
            “I thought maybe we could fix something nice for my parents,” he said, heading into the kitchen and adjusting his shirt. “Would you help me with your baking expertise?”
            “Sure,” said Suzerra, leaning against the counter and smoothing down her hair. “An ‘I’m Sorry I Thought You Were Traitors and Cursed Your Names for the Past Three Years’ present?”
            “Something like that.”
            “I make a divine spiced almond cake.”
            “Sounds… different. Let’s do it.”
            Suzerra spiced the almonds while David started preparations on the cake. They fell into a steady rhythm, though got distracted when David dumped flour on Suzerra and she reciprocated by getting cumin in his hair. Eventually, the cake made it into the oven, and they sat and chatted while it baked.
            “The wizard had books and books of strange recipes,” Suzerra told David. “And I learned to make up my own.”
            “And everything’s always spicy?”
            “That’s how I like it.”
            When the cake was done, David got it out of the oven to cool. For the first time, Brian sat up.
            “Is that cake?” he asked, blinking over at them.
            “It’s for Mom and Dad. You can have some after they get home.” David drizzled an almond glaze over the top of the cake. “There’re some nice dishes in there,” he said, gesturing to a tall wooden cabinet. “Could you get one for the cake?”
            Wandering over, Suzerra opened the cabinet. There were many dishes, but the most prominent were a beautiful set of white porcelain china. Around the rim of each piece were painted delicate, dancing fairies. She stared at them.
            “What did I tell you about touching things?!”
            The long-forgotten voice echoed through her mind.
            “What are you screeching about now, woman?”
            “Suzerra? Are you alright?”
            She looked over to see David watching her in concern.
            “Yeah.” She took down a large serving platter. The fairies were painted so masterfully they seemed almost to move.
            “I just wanted to have a picnic.”
            She winced, almost dropping the plate. Her hand drifted up to her cheek. For a moment, it had seemed to smart again.
            “With whom, exactly? You haven’t any friends.”
            “With the fairies.”
            “The fairies? See? I told you there was something wrong with this child!”
            Placing his hand on Suzerra’s arm, David guided her gently into a chair. “You’re looking strange,” he said.
            “I ran,” Suzerra whispered.
            “I told you she was a mistake.”
            “You what?”
            “I ran away.”
            Her heart thudded in her ears. Drums were pounding in time. Where were the drums coming from?
            “What do you mean? What did you run away from?”
            She burst through the door and fell, face-down in the mud. The drumming was louder, and she was drowning.
            “Them.” She blinked and smiled at him. “I didn’t run away from home.”
            A hand found hers and pulled her out of the mud. The small, green woman helped her find a dry path. And there, at the end, was a little wooden house, empty, waiting for her.
            “I ran away to home.”
            “David, your girlfriend’s weirding me out.”
            Suzerra laughed. “Sorry,” she said. “It’s just… my mother had these same dishes.” She ran her finger around the rim, watching the fairies dance.  


I Thought I'd Healed (Maurelle)


            “I baked cookies,” said Suzerra, pulling a wrapped parcel out of her bag.
            “Um… when?” asked David.
            “While you guys were sleeping. I portaled home.”
            “Couldn’t you portal us back to base, then?”
            “It doesn’t work like that.”
            “How does it work?”
            “Never mind,” said Maurelle. “Bring out the cookies!”
            Suzerra unwrapped the parcel, letting loose the enticing nutty smell of peanut butter cookies. Everyone crowded around to grab one, except Maurelle.
            “Aren’t you going to get one?” Clara asked her.
            “No. I don’t care for peanut butter cookies.” Maurelle propped her head in her hands, frowning.
            “Is something wrong?”
            Maurelle shook her head. Then she looked over at her brother, who was eating placidly.
            “Do you remember when I baked peanut butter cookies?” she asked him.
            “I found the recipe in the library, and I was so excited to try them.” Maurelle looked into the fire, the memory still fresh. “It was just after we’d found our apartment, after you’d gotten your job for that awful Thomas Stretch.”
            Jak frowned.
            “I made the cookies, and they looked just perfect. And it was as I was pulling them out of the oven that you came in the door.” Maurelle shuddered. “Covered in blood.”
            “Oh,” said Jak, remembering.
            “What happened?” asked Clara.
            “He’d been jumped in the street by some of Stretch’s competitors.”
            “I beat most of them off,” said Jak.
            Maurelle rolled her eyes. “I know. You were outnumbered and you hadn’t gotten used to fighting without magic yet, but you still bashed in plenty of heads. But, the fact is, you came home with broken ribs, blood pouring down your face, and some other guys’ blood on your hands, and you wouldn’t let me take you to hospital. You had just enough time to tell me not to before you passed out. So I was left to clean you up as best I could, with a tiny amount of healing magic and a bit of veterinary knowledge.” Maurelle’s lips turned downward, her brow creased. “You could have died.”
            “But I didn’t,” said Jak gently. “You saved me. Again.”
            Maurelle pressed her face to her hands. Clara rubbed her back.
            “I still don’t see why you can’t eat peanut butter cookies,” said Suzerra.

I Thought I'd Healed (Jak)


         Finishing off the last of his dinner, Jak leaned forward, closer to the fire, the heat stinging his cold skin.
            “I’ve got just the stuff to warm us up,” said Borris, pulling something from his pack. “’Been saving it for a special occasion, but I guess this will do.”
            He held up a bottle. Its contents gleamed golden and red in the firelight.
            “Where the grauk did you get fairy nectar?” asked Suzerra, snatching the bottle. She opened it and took a deep whiff, licking her lips.
            The others continued to buzz with excitement, but Jak didn’t hear them. His eyes were fixed on the golden liquid. Memories fogged his thinking. But he forced himself to blink and look away. This was foolish.
            And then the bottle was passed to him. The rich, sweet scent wafted up to him. And he remembered.

            The golden liquid made music as it trickled from the bottle and filled the sparkling crystal glass. The scent was dizzying, sweet and intoxicating.
            “How much do you like?” asked Uncle Juniper.
            “I don’t know,” said Jak. “I’ve never had any.”
            “Never-! Izzy! You’ve been depriving him.”
            Princess Isadora sniffed, taking a sip of her pale, white wine. She did not deign to answer her brother.
            “Well, this is a special occasion, my boy! Go on, drink up!”
            “A special occasion indeed.”
            All heads turned to the doorway, where a stately fairy stood, shimmering in a scarlet gown. Her lips were curved in a smile, but her eyes were hard and cold. Behind her stood many of the palace guards, and other men bearing sharp weapons that glittered in the firelight.
            “Donella?” said the king, rising at the head of the table.
            “Goodbye, brother.”

            “Jak? Jak, are you in there?”
            Jak blinked and looked up to see his sister laughing.
            “You’re supposed to drink some and pass on the bottle,” she said.
            “I’ve never had any before,” Jak murmured, looking down at the bottle in his hand.
            “You’ve never had fairy nectar?” Suzerra’s eyes widened. “Seriously?”
            “Neither have I,” said Maurelle. “I was too young when we left. Come on, Jak, try some now. Then it’s my turn!”
            Jak took a swallow, hoping it would drown out the screams.

Read Maurelle's response to the prompt
Read Suzerra's response to the prompt