Monday January 16th, 2017

The exercise:

Write about: the next step.

I'm returning to the Wastelands for this one. In order to do that more easily, I needed to label all the related posts because apparently I hadn't already done that.

Had a good day with Nicky and my family. Spent the morning with Miles while Kat and Max were at StrongStart, then the afternoon with Max (featuring a rather spectacular session of soccer class).

She'll be stopping by again tomorrow morning before having to catch a mid-afternoon flight to Calgary from Penticton. We shall see what sort of madness we can cram into the three or four hours we'll have together.


I'd had my doubts about the splint Master Francis had affixed to my left hand - two short pieces of wood tightly wrapped in three leather straps - but I have to admit it has done its job. The ache in my wrist is nearly gone now, and he says we should be able to remove it within a few days.

And then what? That had been the question he posed to me over dinner this evening.

"Sebastien tells me that Scout V42 has returned from your crash site with sufficient evidence - his words, not mine - that you were indeed brought down by the North Ridge Brigands. So I suppose revenge is one possible course of action for you."

"Hmm," I'd said without making eye contact. The food was simple but good, so I focused on that instead.

"Or you could continue on your journey to the west. Try to discover what your Captain Miranda had been seeking." Master Francis had been trying to avoid dipping the end of his long white beard in his soup, with mixed results. "Though, to be entirely honest, I have no idea what that might be and I have lived in this place for a very long time."

"Right," I'd said, stirring my soup with slow circles of my wooden spoon. That had originally been my plan but my time with Master Francis and his inventions had been a pleasant distraction and I wasn't sure that I was ready to leave them behind.

Besides, I still needed to win my money back from Sebastien. I could have sworn he cheated at cards, I just couldn't prove it.

"Alternatively," Master Francis had continued after sipping from his cup of water, "you could, if you'd care to, stay on here for a while longer. Sebastien has enjoyed your company and... I suppose I have as well."

"That is kind of you," I had said.

"Don't go thinking it would be a nice vacation or nothing like that though," he'd said, pointing a heavily wrinkled finger at my face. "I dare say you'd need to put in some work here to repay me for all that I've done for you."

"That's fair," I'd said, trying to hide a smile.

"Anyway, take a few days to make up your mind. Just don't take all year about it, all right?"

"Of course."

Now here I am, lying in bed, mulling over my options. And I think I already know which path I will choose. But I'm also wondering whether or not I could pursue more than one of those choices at the same time.

Because as much as I wish to repay my debt to Master Francis, I am also not the sort of man to simply forget about those who have blasted me out of the sky.

Sunday January 15th, 2017

The exercise:

Write about: the nightcap.

My sister arrived at her hotel late this evening, so I went to meet her for a nightcap. And thus, a prompt was born.

Great to catch up a little bit with just the two of us there. Looking forward to hanging out with her and my family tomorrow.


"What, exactly, do you have on your head?"

"You mean my nightcap?"

"It's a... oh, I see."

"Would you like one?"

"I think you may have gotten things a little mixed up, dear."

"Oh, not at all - it's pure whiskey!"

"Also, you're sleeping on the couch tonight - you've already spilled most of that in your hair..."

Saturday January 14th, 2017

The exercise:

Write a four line poem about: the basketball player.

Bakery was busy for pastries and treats, not so much for loaves of bread. Sold out of butter tarts, croissants, cinnamon buns, and focaccia. Put about 20 loaves of bread into the freezer. Bit of an odd day.

Very much looking forward to the arrival of my sister Nicky tomorrow night. She's out from Boston to see us for a couple days after having a visit with our sister Sue in Calgary. It'll be great to see her again, and I can't wait to introduce her to Miles.

And get her reacquainted with Max. That should be fun as well.


The tallest of the giants,
Peter stalks toward the basket;
I quickly pass him the ball,
Lest he stuff me in a casket

Friday January 13th, 2017

The exercise:

Write four lines of prose about: The Fly-by-Night Detective Agency.

Not sure where that came from, but it sounded like fun. Plus it might inspire something longer or ongoing or recurring from some of us. So here we are.

Work was pretty quiet this evening, other than a packed gym for pickleball. With so many players there's a lot of waiting around to get into a game, which means people are going to stick around as long as possible in the hopes of more time on the court.

Which means I get to kick people out at the end of the night so that I can go home.

Not my favorite thing, but at least they're all adults and can get out fairly quickly when told to. I just wish they didn't need to be told...


"I see here that you require payment upfront," the elderly lady (who had thus far refused to give me her name) said before turning to page four of my three hundred page New Client Agreement package.

"That's right," I told her, shifting around behind my desk in my once-comfortable chair. No one had ever bothered to read that far before.

"And down here, in the teensy tiny font," she continued, holding up the page so that I could see the offending paragraph, "am I correct to say that this clause requires me to pay for all of your expenses - including... or is that especially... online pornography subscriptions?"

Thursday January 12th, 2017

The exercise:

Write about: the opera.

Hanging with the boys went pretty well this morning. Then Kat took Max for a walk around the farm after lunch and unsurprisingly lost him to her parents. So that left me with Miles, who mostly napped.

This is me not complaining about the cold. At all.

Looking forward to getting back to work tomorrow night. Compared to the pre-Christmas madness, the last couple of weeks have felt rather empty in that regard.


"Hi Liam, thanks for picking me up!"

"Uh.. hi?"

"What? What's wrong?"

"What are you wearing?"

"This? Oh, just an old t-shirt and a dirty pair of jeans. You know, stuff that I won't mind getting a little wrecked at the concert tonight. Why are you dressed up all pretty?"

"I think there may have been a misunderstanding..."

"You told me you were taking me to see some music tonight - what's there to misunderstand?"

"I don't think they're going to let you in the door of the opera house dressed like that..."

"Why not? Don't they have a mosh pit at that club?"

Wednesday January 11th, 2017

The exercise:

Write about: the side project.

Had some time to work on writing things today, which was nice. I'm working my way through the free trial period for Scrivener and I'm liking what I've seen so far. I'd be very surprised if I don't end up purchasing it in the end.

I'll have the boys for most of tomorrow so that Kat can get some work of her own done, then I'm doing the closing shift Friday night at the Community Centre and a full day at the bakery on Saturday. So it was especially good to have some time for myself this morning and afternoon.


"And what are we working on today?"

"We? Oh, are you going to help me with this?"

"... no. I meant you. What are you working on today."

"Then why didn't you say so!?"

"I just did."

"Right, I suppose that's true."


"Sir, come on now. This is rather clearly not a well."

"Not a... what are you working on!?"

"Just a little side project, that's all."

"It would please me so very much if you could be a little more specific."

"Oh, sure! I just didn't want to bore you with all the details, was all."

"We are accountants. Details are what make us tick. So, please, do tell."

"Right, true again! So this is - or it will be when it's finished, anyway - a life-sized model of the Hindenburg disaster."

Tuesday January 10th, 2017

The exercise:

Write two haiku about: rage.

Not inspired by anything that happened today. Actually, I added it to my prompt idea list after the incident on the road on my previous trip to Penticton and just haven't felt like using it until today.

Kat took Max to his first swimming lesson this afternoon. Sounds like he started out pretty tentatively but was totally into it by the end. Hopefully that trend continues next week.

I stayed home with Miles and he slept the entire time they were gone. It was pretty great. If only I'd known he was going to do that, then I could have gotten into something a little more in depth, rather than expecting him to wake up at any moment.


Fire in my veins.
Screams fill my mighty lungs. But
rocks replace my brains...

*     *     *

This dying light is
no match for my rage - this is
not the end just yet.