Friday, July 31, 2015

August Novel Essential Information

Novel Title: Derailment
Time Setting: 1887
Genre: historical fiction
Minimum Word Goal: 90,000
Timespan: April to September
Locations: Richland, Kansas; area of Eakly, Oklahoma (Territory)
Main Characters: Matthew Hawkswing, Fox Paw
Background Information: Matthew was born the oldest son and third child to a Comanche man and a white woman who'd been kidnapped by the Comanche from her Texas home when she was fifteen. He grew up living with the Comanche people with the name Antelope Horn until his father died of an infected wound when he was seventeen.
Later on that year a white man from Kansas was travelling through the area and noticed that Matthew's mother was a white woman; after they got to know each other for a time the man proposed to her and she married him, moving to Kansas.
Matthew and his four younger siblings went with their mother — their two older sisters who'd married Comanche men remaining behind — and took on white names, his siblings taking on their stepfather's surname while Matthew anglicized his father's name and took it as a surname.
His mother had been a staunch Baptist — even during her over twenty five years with the Comanche — and had raised all of her children Baptist, along with converting some of the Comanche. Matthew became a Christian at a young age and took keen interest in the Bible.
After a year of school in Kansas — in which he managed to complete all of the grades due to his mother educating him among the Comanche — Matthew decided he wanted to become a pastor; the pastor of the local church helped him to apply to a school, but he was rejected due to his noticeable ethnicity.
The pastor took Matthew as an apprentice and soon a church wanted Matthew as their senior pastor; however, Matthew thought it wouldn't be right unless he was ordained, so a massive petition was taken up and due to the overwhelming support Matthew was accepted in spite of his ethnicity.
Upon graduation, unfortunately, the church who'd wanted Matthew had found a new pastor, so Matthew took up circuit preaching in Iowa, where he met his wife, whom he married in 1883.
Matthew disliked the circuit preaching life, however, being as he didn't have the ability to develop meaningful relationships with his congregations. He searched throughout the area for a church who would want him as their pastor, but all of them refused, mostly due to his ethnicity.
Finally Matthew decided to go to the Comanche reserve where his sisters were living and start up a church there; his wife was reticent at the idea of bringing their young son Adonikam along, much less going along herself, but Matthew convinced her and so they prepared to set out in the spring of 1886.
Unfortunately his wife died while giving birth do their second child, daughter Shelomith, and so Matthew has spent a year mourning her at his mother's house, also waiting for his daughter to be fit enough to travel.

Fox Paw was born the third daughter and fourth child to her father's fourth wife; the twenty fourth of his forty nine children overall. Her family is all of the Wichita tribe and they moved peacefully onto their reservation in Oklahoma Territory when she was three years old.
Her family has lived in peace and freedom with very little white interference on the reserve for all of their years, not really engaging in any major conflicts with the other two tribes they share their reservation with, or even fellow tribe members.
Over the last year Fox Paw — mainly by the insistence of her father to be wed, being as she's nearly twenty — has been cultivating a relationship with one of the men in the tribe, Badger Ears, and the couple are planning to be married within the year.

Adonikam: uh-dohn-ih-kahm
Shelomith: shee-low-myth

The novel will begin on Monday.

Saturday, July 18, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 15

Word Count: 90,015

Year to Date: 720,038

Summary of Events:
Joseph talked with the Jets' WHL scout about Chalmers' progress and if he was ready for the NHL. Chalmers got ready and went to Alizabeth's graduation party where he wasn't surprised, but was upset about Cole's presence. Alizabeth found out Chalmers' real name — instead of just his nickname — and tried to make Cole apologize for calling Chalmers names. Chalmers watched as Alizabeth opened her gifts and discovered his card was missing — probably taken by Cole. Alizabeth went to find Chalmers after not seeing him for awhile and found him in the bathroom.

Excerpt of the Day:
""I had a card for you too, I forgot to give it to you," Chalmers said. "I put it in the basket, but it wasn't there when you opened up the rest; I found it up here in the garbage."
"Oh? But why?" Alizabeth asked.
"I think Cole took it and tossed it in here," Chalmers replied.
Alizabeth sighed. "Chalmers I'm sorry, I've been trying to get Cole to stop, but it's hard when I'm not with him more often."
"You should be more forceful with him," Chalmers said, a hardness rimming his eyes as he looked up at her.
"The thing is, I don't know what to do," Alizabeth said.
"Threaten to terminate your relationship with him if he keeps it up," Chalmers replied.
"No, not with that," Alizabeth replied.
"Then what do you mean?" Chalmers asked.
"I'll see what happens when I come back from Bible School," Alizabeth said. "It stresses me too much otherwise. Here, I should open the card."
Chalmers gave it to her and Alizabeth opened it. It was an incredibly beautiful card, she opened it up and read the printed message inside, then she started to read his handwritten message, written in quite neat cursive writing.
Alizabeth, I still think we are an unlikely pair, but I wanted to say that I'm really glad I met you; I think if it weren't for the milkshakes and helping out in the kitchen I would've been really bored, and probably could've ended up causing more trouble than I did. You were a lifesaver. Thank you.
Gazing at the card, Alizabeth fought to hold onto her composure, but she couldn't, so she let the tears fall. After a few moments Chalmers' arms wrapped around her strongly and she rated her head against his chest, inhaling his subtle, woody cologne.
"I'm sorry I didn't give you any money," Chalmers said. "I never thought of it."
"Don't worry about it," Alizabeth whispered. "You paid for the ambulance anyways."
"You figured it out?" Chalmers asked.
"Who else would've paid?" Alizabeth asked.
"I guess that is true," Chalmers agreed. "But that didn't contribute to your schooling."
"I've got plenty Chalmers," Alizabeth said. "Besides, I think you gave me something more special than anyone else."
Chalmers was silent and Alizabeth leaned against him, fighting to regain her composure. They definitely made an unlikely pair, she agreed with Chalmers on that point definitely, but she felt an indescribable joy at the fact that she'd been able to help him, even though she felt like she'd made a lot of blunders along the way.
There was a transformation beginning in Chalmers, she was sure of it; he'd changed from being angry or verging on anger to being much more controlled in his temper, and either putting aside what needed to be put aside, or talking things out instead of punching them out, and Alizabeth was grateful she'd been a part of the change."

Look for the next post July 31.

Friday, July 17, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 14

Word Count: 84,010

Summary of Events:
Joseph watched Chalmers as he played and thought about the fact that Charles and Chalmers hadn't really had much for notable interaction with each other for awhile. Chalmers went to the diner and talked with Alizabeth about her different options for secondary education. Alizabeth felt refreshed about making a decision the next morning. Chalmers finished off a private workout and then received an apology from Charles, who asked Chalmers to forgive him as well . . .

Excerpt of the Day:
"I think I can," Chalmers replied. "I've wanted an apology all season, and I can see how this would be humiliating for you, so I should; but it's kind of hard too, I mean, you're the first person that hurt me who's actually come and asked me to make it right, and I don't really know what to do with it."
"I wouldn't blame you if you didn't," Charles said.
"I owe it to you," Chalmers said. "You've been through a lot of difficulty making this decision, and you've lowered yourself pretty far, I shouldn't hold a grudge against you; it wouldn't be right. My Grandpa wouldn't want me to do that, and neither would Grandma."
"It's your decision," Charles said.
"I'm not going to say I will now," Chalmers replied. "But I'll say that I'll do what I can. Hopefully I can get to the point of actually saying it to you outright."
Charles nodded. "Do you want to move up onto the top line? Or do you want to stay with Taylor-Kirby and Awberry?"
"I don't know," Chalmers replied. "Which do you think I'll do better on?"
"I don't think it matters which of the three lines you play on, you'll do well and have an impact, you've done well with all of them," Charles said. "We have a surprising depth, and it's probably only due to my willful mismanagement of your playing time that we aren't tearing up the league right now."
Chalmers shrugged, taking up his coat.
"Technically, to put you on the top line would probably overload it, though," Charles said. "If a team can effectively shut down the top line with you on it then they'll probably stifle the bulk of our scoring. If you're on the third line then they have to work harder."
Chalmers nodded, sliding his coat on.
"And you've really revealed some inspiring potential in Taylor-Kirby and Awberry," Charles added. "I like keeping an eye out for mentions of my players in the media world, and a lot of people are taking notice of them because of their chemistry with you; people like The Hockey News are talking about how the two of them might well be first round draft picks in a couple of years when they're eligible."
Chalmers nodded again.
"I think working with you has done a lot more good for them than having had them play with Perrot all season would've done," Charles said. "With you on the third line I feel more like I have a top lone, two second lines, and a fifth line."
"Otherwise you'd have one through three and five?" Chalmers asked.
"Yeah, probably," Charles said.
"I could stay on the third line then," Chalmers said. "Might as well not mess with what's working.""

Thursday, July 16, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 13

Word Count: 78,007

Summary of Events:
While on a road trip the Broncos played in Brandon and Chalmers ended up putting a Brandon player through the glass on a hit, which allowed him to confiscate a derogatory poster, and also lose his helmet. Alizabeth discussed her choices for the future with Krystal, who encouraged Bible School; several days later Chalmers came in and she tried to apologize to him again, but he left, leaving Alizabeth in turmoil. Chalmers then did an interview with the Broncos colour man.

Excerpt of the Day:
""Now is this related to the helmet-stealing?" the colour man asked.
"Yes," Chalmers replied.
"After you got your helmet back, why did you still leave the game?" the colour man asked.
"Because the thief ripped the foam out of it," Chalmers replied.
"Oh," the colour man said. "Did the thief apologize?"
"No," Chalmers replied. "And due to his obstinacy I've elected to press charges against him for attempted robbery and the trial has been scheduled for the middle of June."
"Is it really that important, being as your helmet's now been repaired?" the colour man asked.
"Yes," Chalmers replied. "Robbing is wrong, and even attempting to rob shouldn't be excusable — especially if the robber refuses to apologize for what he did. If he would've apologized I might've been inclined to let him go; but he didn't. Although I'm only intending to give him the minimum, mainly due to the inconvenience he caused, my helmet isn't so valuable as to require me to get him in there for life or anything like that."
"Now, this does all lend to discussion of what you did in Brandon, I guess technically the year before last," the colour man said. "Are you willing to talk about that?"
"I am," Chalmers replied.
"Well, what happened?" the colour man asked.
"You know what happened," Chalmers replied. "And I'm sure it's easily accessible to anyone who doesn't know what happened."
"Alright then, why did it happen?" the colour man asked.
"Because I reacted wrongly," Chalmers replied, causing the colour man to startle. "I cannot justify my actions, neither can I undo the, but I can explain why I did them, and also what I ought to have done differently."
The colour man was too stunned to say anything and waved Chalmers on. . .
. . . "What I did in Brandon is the whole reason Coach Charles and I don't have the sunniest of relations," Chalmers replied. "It's the whole reason I'm on the third line, it's the whole reason there was a poster for me to burn, it's the whole reason my draft rankings plunged from one to out of the draft. I know it was wrong of me to do, but I can't undo it now, just like Dany Heatley and Craig MacTavish can't undo what they did; nor can anyone else who's done something wrong. People seem to be able to forgive and forget what Heatley and MacTavish did — and it was worse than what I did, they actually caused people to die — but they can't seem to do the same for me.""

Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 12

Word Count: 72,017

Summary of Events:
Alizabeth had a rather quiet lunch with her friends, due to their jealousy, and then had a nice visit with another girl she knew vaguely. Joseph found Chalmers doing some private practising and then took him for a drive to talk. Chalmers left Joseph to skate with some kids on the Swift Current Creek and began teaching them stick handling skills. The kids all then went with Chalmers to the diner for hot chocolate.

Excerpt of the Day:
"All of them had hockey sticks in hand and skates tied together by the laces over their shoulders. They looked like they ought to have been posing for a Christmas card or maybe one of Tims' winter designs for their paper cups.
The kids all sat around the round tables in the middle of Alizabeth's section, the girl took Micker's hand and dragged him over to sit at the table she chose to sit at. Alizabeth walked over to them, feeling highly cold due to their warmly bundled appearance.
"I want something hot," one of the boys said.
"Just make it easy and do a hot chocolate for everyone," Micker said.
Most all of the kids cheered enthusiastically and Alizabeth nodded, heading to the kitchen, she went to the break room . . .
. . . Alizabeth grabbed one of the serving trolleys before they left the kitchen and then went to count the kids while Krystal and Jassmina started filling mugs. There were twenty seven kids around the tables talking enthusiastically with each other and Micker, who looked surprisingly calm with them. Alizabeth wouldn't have thought he'd be that good with kids.
"Oh," Jassmina groaned as Alizabeth turned to give them the number.
"What?" Alizabeth asked.
"What's-his-face your boyfriend's here with them," Jassmina muttered.
"My what?" Alizabeth asked, startled.
"Isn't he your boyfriend?" Jassmina asked.
"No," Alizabeth replied.
"Then why the – is he always coming here and hanging out with you?" Jassmina asked.
"I'm not sure," Alizabeth replied. "There's twenty seven kids, plus him."
"He thinks I'm the worst waitress ever," Jassmina said. "And yet he doesn't order anything from me."
"Good for him," Krystal muttered. "Twenty seven?"
"Yes," Alizabeth replied.
"I should dump his hot chocolate right in his lap," Jassmina said. "See if he likes his nuts hot."
"I''ll be serving them, thank you very much," Alizabeth said. "I just needed your guys' help to pour them all."
"I'll give them seconds," Jassmina said.
"They're in my section," Alizabeth said. "I'll give them seconds too; along with thirds and fourths and whatnot."
Jassmina glared at Alizabeth. "What do you care if he's not your boyfriend?"
"Because he's our customer, and he does not deserve to be treated like that," Alizabeth said. "We want these people to keep coming, we don't want to drive them away."
"So we'll let them dis us?" Jassmina asked.
"I agree with him just so you know Minnie," Krystal said. "Here's your twenty seven."
"How many times to I have to tell you to stop calling me that!" Jassmina hissed.
"I don't know," Krystal replied as Alizabeth headed away. "Until you leave probably."
Alizabeth rolled the trolley around and gave everyone their hot chocolates. She assured all of the kids that they would probably be just nicely warm, and not hot enough to burn their tongues — although some of the kids just started drinking them anyways.
Being as the kids were prone to impatience, Alizabeth started with the table furthest from Micker and worked her way toward him — besides, she wasn't sure what to do about him either."

Tuesday, July 14, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 11

Word Count: 66,011

Summary of Events:
Chalmers, Joseph, and the General Manager were summoned to meet with the Broncos owner about the altercation in Prince George due to Charles having talked to the owner about it and they had a very constructive conversation. Alizabeth was helping with the coffee rush and saw Chalmers pull up, but was surprised when he didn't come to sit in his usual spot, instead sitting in one of the other girls' sections. Chalmers called his Grandma to talk about his distresses.

Excerpt of the Day:
""Well, I guess your love will have to be unrequited, at least for now," Grandma said.
"My what?" Chalmers asked, startling.
"Your love," Grandma replied. "You sound surprised."
"But . . . I don't love her," Chalmers said.
"Of course you do," Grandma said. "Why else would you be hurt by her loving another?"
Chalmers was silent.
"She sounds like a lovely young woman," Grandma said. "I wouldn't be surprised if she has cultivated affection in you." . . .
 . . . The more he thought about it, the more he was sure that Grandma was right, he was in love with Alizabeth; and she was pretty: her brown hair all pulled back into a neat knot — Chalmers could only wonder how long it was, and what it looked like when it was down, although he was sure that it was beautiful — her sparkling, vivacious blue eyes; her sweet smile; her caring.
How she walked, the gentle sway of her hips; her quirks, how cute and funny she got when she was a little mixed up; the way she treated his tattoos like she was touching a wild cat; she was just so naturally endearing.
Not to mention she was a magnificent waitress; she was caring, kind, polite, and seemed to have impeccable timing. She wanted to do what she was doing, and she always seemed to do it with excellence.
She was far and above better than the girl who worked the bar, and she was also better than the older girl who'd served him today. The older girl was nice enough, although she looked a bit more harried, and like she could easily get into an argument.
Alizabeth seemed so peaceful and peaceable, she never seemed intent on getting into conflict, she was always willing to make peace. However, she'd tried to apologize and explain away Cole's name calling. Why would she do that to him?
It seemed unlike her, it seemed wrong for her to go and try and cover up someone's flaws, she seemed like the kind of person who would be disappointed in them and would try and get that person to change and improve themselves instead of defending them to others.
Chalmers sighed, everyone had to have some kind of flaw; but it seemed inconsistent: why would Alizabeth try and make Cole's flaws not look as bad, but she'd tried not to help or encourage Chalmers to cover up his own.
Or was that a sign that she didn't like him, along with the fact that she had his biggest bother as her boyfriend? Chalmers felt a fear-filled chill in his breastbone. No; she couldn't dislike him, not with how nicely she treated him, nor with how she'd clung to him when she'd gone into shock."

Monday, July 13, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 10

Word Count: 60,013

Summary of Events:
Alizabeth went for lunch to Cole's house, which she found a surprisingly awkward and unsettling experience. Chalmers had a lengthy discourse with Brandon about his frustrations before they played against Prince George. Joseph watched as the frustrations boiled over between Chalmers and Charles and wondered if it was partially the General Manager's doing.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Wiping off the table, Alizabeth took the newspaper up off of one of the chairs and carried it over to the newspaper rack. She set the newspaper down, then noticed a small headline in the corner: Broncos with serious off-ice issues.
Taking the paper out, Alizabeth set it on the lunch counter and flipped to the page written under the headline. A picture of the Broncos logo was all there was for imagery on the page, the rest of it being filled with words.
Broncos Coach Florence at war with MacKenna, the main headline read. Florence and MacKenna had lengthy shouting match that went to dressing room, the subtitle said.
In spite of the hard-fought win the Broncos earned last night in Prince George over the incredible Cougars club that's posted franchise record numbers in the shutout columns, and is knocking hard on the doors of the WHL records with half the season still left, there is trouble in the water; big trouble.
Since October there has been no shortage of surprises regarding Coach Charles Florence's management of former Brandon Wheat Kings phenom and Winnipeg Jets third overall draft pick Chalmers MacKenna. First of all, MacKenna was put on the third line; then he was hardly played at all before being scratched for five games without an obvious reason; now he's suddenly returned and played as few as five minutes a game — although none of this has hampered his scoring touch, and he's certainly found a magic combination with Justin Taylor-Kirby and Zachary Awberry since they were put together in Calgary before he was scratched, and have now since become the third line pairing.
However, last night, some more sudden shifts took place: first being that MacKenna played just about thirty minutes on the ice in thirty five minutes of game time, playing with all four lines to varying degrees of success that went downhill the longer he played — naturally really.
Additionally, after coming in with about five minutes left in the second period, MacKenna and Florence got into a heated altercation that disappeared into the dressing room for several minutes before Florence returned, followed shortly thereafter by MacKenna — no longer in his playing equipment, but in his suit.
For the remainder of the game MacKenna stood on the bench, and downed something like ten bottles of water. Following the game neither Florence nor MacKenna would give any comment on the matter — nor would anyone else — but I think it is fairly obvious to anyone observing that there is trouble going on behind the scenes in the Broncos organization.
MacKenna has registered no less than forty five goals in all three of his WHL seasons — peaking at 73 in his sophomore season — and has had no less than one hundred points as well — peaking with 139 in his sophomore season as well — and in the BCHL he was equally as good. He was picked third overall by the Winnipeg Jets in the NHL Entry Draft this summer — a surprising move after his actions in Brandon toward this stage last season."

Friday, July 10, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 9

Word Count: 54,016

Summary of Events:
Joseph watched as the Broncos played Prince Albert — Chalmers and his linemates accumulating twelve points combined with over twenty minutes still left in the game. Chalmers went to the diner to find out where Alizabeth was and found she was back at work; she explained to him what had caused her shock and had him help her make wings for wing night. Chalmers invited all of the Broncos to come to wing night, so Alizabeth served them all and learned Chalmers' nickname.

Excerpt of the Day:
""I think I'll take the bacon wrapped," Brandon said. "No– the spicy bacon wrapped."
Alizabeth nodded and took it down.
"I think I'll take the Asian," Alexander said. "Is it spicy?"
"Yes," Alizabeth replied. "The pineapple is a milder version if you'd like."
"Nah," Alexander said.
"I think I'll have the caramel ones," Tyler said.
"Seriously!?" Justin exclaimed, looking wide-eyed at the menu.
"I think I'll take the honey garlic ones," William said.
"There's potato chip wings!?" Justin exclaimed. "How does that even work?"
"The chips are used in the breading," Alizabeth replied.
"I'm totally taking ketchup potato chip!" Justin said.
"And I guess that leaves you for this table," Alizabeth said, looking at Micker.
"I don't know," he said, looking at the menu. "I think I'll try the caramel bacon wrapped, and if nothing else we can all trade wings between each other and try them all."
"The benefits of dining with friends," Brandon said, smiling a smile that looked deliberately corny. Alizabeth had a feeling he was a bit of a clown.
"Any drinks?" Alizabeth asked.
Most of them asked for water — including Zachary, which Alizabeth bit her lip at, water only made the spice worse, he might be crying by the end of the night.
"Should I bring ranch just in case?" Alizabeth asked.
"We'll ask for it if we want it," Micker replied.
Alizabeth nodded and moved on to the next table, introducing herself and asking for the orders. No one at the second table of Broncos ordered the fire alarm wings, they order the more conservative flavours.
"Oh, and should I do individual bills?" Alizabeth asked, catching Micker's eye to make sure he heard.
Everyone agreed she should, which Alizabeth made note of before she felt hands come to rest on her abdomen and lips gently kiss the corner of her jaw. She could see several of the players at the tables in front of her looking with wide eyes.
"So this is where you work?" Cole asked.
Alizabeth startled and pulled away. "Cole! Don't do that! I'm working!"
"I'm sorry," Cole said, looking at her sympathetically. "I just thought that being as you'd so pleasantly surprise me by being here that I'd pleasantly surprise you in return."
"Well, thank you," Alizabeth said. "Now sit down and pick your order so I can get you all your wings."
Cole sat down and one of the players from the second table leaned over to him.
"Apparently Micker dared Zach to order the fire alarm spicy wings with no ranch and a double garnish of jalapeƱos, and eat it without milk, and he's daring anyone else who wants to to do it."
"I'll do it," Cole said. "You got that?"
"Yes," Alizabeth replied, writing it down.
"I'll do it too," another player said.
"I didn't think you were one for spice Kev," one of the others said.
"I might as well have some excitement in my life, being as I'm not playing," Kev replied."

Please Note: I have an all-day engagement tomorrow and will thus be unable to write, so the next post will be Monday.

Thursday, July 09, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 8

Word Count: 48,010

Summary of Events:
Joseph went to see the General Manager and talked with him about the situation with Charles and Chalmers. Chalmers went to see his counsellor — a mercifully brief meeting — and then went to the diner to help in the kitchen again just because. Alizabeth talked with Chalmers while they worked together before she ended up going into shock. Chalmers told one of his teammates about what happened before being told he was brought back into the lineup after five games scratched.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Perrot's out, MacKenna's in," Chalres said. "First two lines are the same, third line is MacKenna, Taylor-Kirby, and Awberry, fourth line is the remainder. No changes in D pairings."
Chalmers glanced over at Justin and Zachary; both of them looked thoroughly elated at the line promotion. Chalmers was glad to be playing again, and being paired with Justin and Zachary probably wouldn't be too bad, base on their performance with him in Calgary. . .
. . . Soon the guys were ready for warmup, Chalmers saw Justin and Zachary with their heads together like a pair of girls who were looking at their secret crush; Chalmers smiled and walked over to them, tapping their shins with his stick.
"You girls better not mess up your opportunity here," Chalmers said seriously.
Zachary and Justin startled, Zachary looking floored, Justin looking affronted; the rest of the room dissolved into guffaws and Chalmers slowly smiled.
"You did that straight faced!" "They even looked like girls!" "That was great!" various teammates called.
"The Powder Keg has a sense of humour, interesting," Cole said.
Chalmers turned and glared at Cole, then turned back to Justin and Zachary.
"I'm being serious, though; just think like you're playing on the fourth line and play like you're on the first." Chalmers said. "Speed, action, alertness."
Zachary nodded like a bobble head, Justin gave a single nod, looking with serious determination at Chalmers.
"Daddy Powder Keg," Cole said.
Chalmers turned again, taking his stick into his hands like he was holding a rifle, and pointed the butt at Cole's head. "You keep yakking and I'll powder keg your head off," he said.
Cole wagged his head at Chalmers as if challenging him. Chalmers tossed his stick to the side, dropped his gloves, and hauled Cole up the wall to be looking him in the eye by his armpits and got close enough that his nose was nearly touching Cole's.
"I'm not the only one who doesn't like you," Chalmers said. "I've heard tell you've been sent home from practise because of your mouth; if you intend to keep it, or any hope of an NHL career intact, you might want to close it if you don't have anything worth saying."
Cole's eyes blazed at Chalmers, his lips gathered, his jaw and neck muscles flickered underneath his skin. Chalmers locked his eyes on Cole's and stared at him, watching as Cole's eyes slowly changed from looking angry to looking quite fearful.
Chalmers released Cole, who dropped down heavily onto his seat, and took up his gloves and stick. He looked over at Cole, who briefly glanced up at him before returning his gaze to his knees.
"You're not bad on the ice, but your positive character qualities outside of it are severely lacking," Chalmers said. "No NHL team's going to invest in you if you keep up your behaviour, they don't just want on-ice talent, they want off-ice integrity.""

Wednesday, July 08, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 7

Word Count: 42,016

Summary of Events:
Alizabeth ended up talking with some of the church seniors about her post-graduation plans, but felt rather stressed by their opinions. Chalmers called a nutritionist whose card he'd gotten from the Jets scout on the bus ride back to Swift Current and got some preliminary advice. Alizabeth was glad to see Cole was back at school, and came to the realization that she considered Cole her boyfriend. Chalmers went to the diner to ask Alizabeth what the recipe was for the milkshakes so he could know what sort of nutrition he was getting out of them.

Excerpt of the Day:
"A waitress came out from the back — but she definitely wasn't Elizabeth — she had manicured, fancily painted nails, her hair was dark brown streaked with platinum blonde and traces of pink, and was pulled back into a messy-looking updo.
Gaudy dangling earrings hung from her ears, which were adorned with several other earrings that were much more simplistic, but all silver, matching the plethora of silver bracelets hanging from her wrists, and the rings on her fingers.
Eyeshadow thickly coated her eyelids, and she looked like she was wearing fake eyelashes and a whole tube's worth of lipstick that was redder than her dress. After pouring coffee for the three men she sauntered over to Chalmers and looked at him with brown eyes that showed extreme boredom.
"What can I get you?" she asked dryly.
"Um, I was wondering if Elizabeth was here," Chalmers replied.
"She doesn't serve the customers on the bar, I do," she replied. "What'll you have?"
"I want to ask Elizabeth a question please," Chalmers said.
"You're not ordering anything?" she asked.
"No," Chalmers replied.
She rolled her eyes. "Elizabeth's in the back."
"Could you go get her?" Chalmers asked.
"You want her," she replied.
"But, wouldn't it be against health code for me to go in there?" Chalmers asked.
"I don't care, and there's no government officials here watching," she replied.
Chalmers was glad he'd never sat in her section; he was glad he'd never seen her before. If he would've, he probably would've turned around and left, she was not a good waitress as far as he was concerned.
Looking nervously at the old men down at the other end, Chalmers sighed, she wasn't going to get Elizabeth for him, so he was going to have to get Elizabeth for himself; hopefully there wouldn't be any surprise visits from government health officials.
Walking around the bar, Chalmers went over to the door and slipped into the kitchen; it was comfortably warm and full of activity. Most of the staff, though — to his surprise — were seniors.
Chalmers noticed a woman putting a pie into an oven, a couple of old ladies were chatting over big bowls of dough, and he saw another woman take a pan of hot, golden, delicious looking buns out of another oven.
All of them were wearing aprons and hairnets, but still, Chalmers was surprised at the fact that they were old women; he would've thought the cooking staff would've been younger than this.
One of the women noticed Chalmers and hurried over; Chalmers fought the urge to flee back out into the restaurant.
"Good afternoon sweetheart," she said. "What can I do for you?"
Chalmers lost his words for a moment, stunned at being called sweetheart, but recovered and replied: "I'm looking for Elizabeth."
"Oh, come right over here," the woman said."

Tuesday, July 07, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 6

Word Count: 36,656

Summary of Events:
Chalmers was benched for the first two periods of a game against Calgary, which frustrated him, but Joseph convinced Charles to put him out and in his two shifts in the game Chalmers scored four goals, turning a 4-1 deficit into a 5-4 win. Alizabeth found herself missing Chalmers and Cole being as Swift Current was on a long road trip, and so she was left to agonize about what she should do once she graduated. Chalmers watched the Broncos play Edmonton — being as he'd been scratched — and ended up having a rather lengthy conversation with the Winnipeg Jets' WHL scout.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Watching the action down below him, Chalmers seethed. This was not the kind of reward he'd expected for his four-goal third period that'd won them the game against Calgary; he'd expected to get promoted — although Justin and Zachary were competent players, and Zachary was a lot nicer on the ice than off.
Instead, Chalmers was sitting here in the press box for the second straight game, watching the action from above. He didn't know what he'd done to deserve this; he thought he'd been taking positive steps like Mr. Kolesar, Joseph, and Grandma had been encouraging him to do, especially of late.
Chalmers wished one of them were up here with him so he could vent — either that or he could leave the arena and got to the diner and talk with Elizabeth again; but the diner was some nine to ten hours' drive away from here in Edmonton, there was no way he could get there, and it wasn't like he had a phone number for the place — not that he should tie up their phone line and employee for purposes unrelated to the restaurant's profit.
Sliding his forearms forward on the table in front of him, Chalmers rested his chin on them and watched the action, listening to the broadcast of the game using an internet-based radio app.
Something touched Chalmers' shoulder and he startled violently, turning in his chair and hoping that it wasn't some ghost or something. He found that it was someone else, someone he didn't recognize, and who was too old to be a WHL player —much less an NHL one — being as he was greying at his ears.
"Sorry," the man said. "I didn't mean to startle you, I didn't realize you were listening to something."
Chalmers pulled out one of his ear pods. "That's alright, I need something to do other the cultivate hatred for my coach."
"Why?" the man asked.
"Because I went and had a four-goal period, won us a game, and the reward I get is — so far — a two game scratching," Chalmers replied. "I mean, I'm a – first-round top five draft pick, and I'm sitting around up here doing nothing; it was better being on the third and fourth lines than this."
"Oh, we were wondering about that," the man said.
"We?" Chalmers asked, looking around for more people.
"Oh, I'm sorry, Thomas Nagel, WHL scout for the Winnipeg Jets," the man said, offering his hand.
Chalmers shook it. "I think you'd probably know who I am," he said.
"Yes," Thomas said. "Our most recent draft pick."
Chalmers nodded.
"So you haven't done anything, but you've been scratched anyways?" Thomas asked.
"I've done nothing bad," Chalmers replied. "I mean – I got demoted last game — but still scored four goals — and I'm scratched.""

Monday, July 06, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 5

Word Count: 30,008

Summary of Events:
Chalmers went to the diner again and Alizabeth sat down and talked with him until quarter after closing time. Joseph went into Charles' office to talk to him, but Charles wouldn't give him any answers and got upset at him. Alizabeth went out to get social papers she'd forgotten in her car and was surprised by Cole's arrival at school.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Cool air wrapped around Alizabeth as she stepped out of the school to head to her car; she'd forgotten her social assignment in her car being as she'd forgotten to put it into her backpack before she'd gone inside.
Unlocking her car, Alizabeth grabbed it off of the seat and closed the door. She heard a vehicle driving and watched a red Ford SUV pull into the parking lot roughly. It came to a had stop and shut off.
Alizabeth listened as the door was slammed, watching the SUV rock. She startled when she saw Cole step out from beside it, looking furious. Quickly Alizabeth hurried over to him.
"Cole! What's the matter?" she called.
Cole stopped and looked up at her, looking like he was on the verge of tears. "I got sent home from practise," he replied, his voice breaking. "My coaches don't think I'll ever be drafted."
"Why not?" Alizabeth asked.
"Because I go making my own nicknames for people." Cole replied. "Like that's going to keep a team from drafting me. And like that's a legitimate reason for sending me home from practise."
"What kind of nicknames?" Alizabeth asked.
"More accurate nicknames," Cole replied. "Like our head coach, I call him Flowless because he doesn't have any hair — and it's kind of a play on his last name, Florence — and our assistant coaches, I call the one Premier because his surname is Parliament, and the other one I call MooJo because he goes by his middle name, but his first initial is M."
Alizabeth didn't think Flowless and MooJo were very nice, Premier didn't really seem particularly one way or the other.
"And with my teammates it's the same," Cole said. "I call our goalie Puffball because he looks fat with his equipment on, and I call the new guy Powder Keg because he's temperamental; he's so temperamental he went and busted up his billets' cars and painted their house up for no reason."
"Well, Cole, as accurate as those may be, they don't sound very nice," Alizabeth said.
Cole sped up his walking to outdistance Alizabeth.
"Cole! Wait!" Alizabeth said. "Please! I'm not trying to make you mad! I'm just trying to show you their side! Please!"
Cole stopped outside the doors, keeping his back toward Alizabeth.
"Cole, I'm sorry it upsets you," Alizabeth said, putting her hand gently on his shoulder. "But think about your teammates and your coaches, who wants to be called a puffball or a powder keg? Who wants to have their hairlessness lampooned? Who wants to be called . . . a cow?"
Cole said nothing.
"You wouldn't want to be called anything nasty like that," Alizabeth said. "So you shouldn't treat them like that, because if they get treated like that by you, that's how they're going to treat you, you receive what your sell.""

Saturday, July 04, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 4

Word Count: 24,019

Summary of Events:
Chalmers packed for a one-game road trip and then called his Grandma and talked to her about how things were going. Cole came to Alizabeth's church and being as she was the only one of her friends that was there, she got to talk with him for a nice long time, which she enjoyed. As they travelled to Saskatoon for their road trip Joseph came over to talk to Chalmers about what had happened back in Brandon and discussed the matter at length, among other things.

Excerpt of the Day:
""The Nauenbergs let me stay up as late as I wanted provided I could wake up as early as I needed to come the next morning, so I usually stayed up until ten thirty, maybe eleven, before I went to bed, and after a little bit of trial and error learned how loud I could keep my music without disturbing anyone," Chalmers continued. "Being as I wasn't really told otherwise when I moved in with the Frolands, I kept  the activity up, and nobody came in and complained or anything until all of the sudden just after Christmas. It was nine thirty, maybe ten at night, not really that late — as far as I'm concerned — and Mrs. Froland came into my room, grabbed me by the little hairs at the base of my skull, and yelled at me."
Chalmers was silent for a moment, although he could tell Joseph wanted to know what she said.
"She told me that she was sick and tired of me," Chalmers said. "She was sick and tired of my music blaring every night — and I can show you what volume I kept it at, which I don't think qualifies as blaring — she was tired of my messing up the kitchen — not like she used it, and I always wiped the cupboard and cleaned up the dishes when I was done — she was tired of my never being around — like she ever was to even notice — she was tired of my being selfish — I'm not sure how — she was tired of my causing so many disruptions and inconveniences in the daily life of the family — again, I don't know how — and above all, she was tired of me stinking like sweat all the time — because apparently athletes aren't supposed to sweat or something? I don't know. Without saying it, she pretty much said she hated me."
Staring at the back of the seat in front of him for a few moments, Chalmers took several deep breaths to calm himself and turned to look at Joseph, Joseph was looking at him with an expression that told Chalmers he knew what question Joseph was going to ask.
"What are you supposed to do when someone tells you that you're a burden and an inconvenience to them right to your face?" Chalmers replied before Joseph could ask.
Joseph was silent and shortly broke his gaze with Chalmers until he was looking at the back of the seat in front of them. "You could tell your coaches or other people involved with the team that your billet family said that, and they'd probably see what could be done to get you into a new billet family that didn't think that way about you."
Chalmers was silent; Joseph was right, he could've done that, but he hadn't — not that he'd thought of it either."

Friday, July 03, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 3

Word Count: 18,006

Summary of Events:
Chalmers discovered Joseph, his coach from his BCHL years, was now an assistant coach with Swift Current, which surprised him and made him quite happy. Joseph watched as Chalmers got his first shift and successfully scored an amazing goal. Alizabeth and her friends sat down for lunch at school and her friend Hanalysa invited Cole over to their table to eat. Chalmers got annoyed with the head coach not putting him out onto the ice and so went out with the top line on his own and scored two goals in fifteen seconds before getting into an argument with the head coach about it.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Alizabeth took the bill and went back to the register where she punched in the total and took him the change and the receipt. He took them and stuffed them into his pants pocket roughly.
"Are you alright?" Alizabet asked, startling when she realized she'd said it aloud.
He snapped his head up to look at her, a stunned and slightly disturbed looking expression on his face.
"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to say it out loud," Alizabeth apologized.
His shoulders relaxed and he kept his gaze on her, but then slowly turned it away until he was staring at the seat straight ahead of him. Alizabeth wanted to leave, but she couldn't move; she was completely rooted to the floor.
"No," he said. "I'm not alright."
"Oh," Alizabeth said. "I'm sorry."
"It's not your fault," he replied. "I don't know whose fault it is, but I have a strong sense that it's probably mine."
Alizabeth wanted to ask more, but this time succeeded in keeping her tongue bound behind her teeth.
"I just get so mad," he said, still staring at the seat across from him. "People tick me off so easily; especially since December."
Alizabeth nodded, thinking maybe she should sit down, but noting that his feet were resting on the seat across.
"I don't see why people have to judge me so harshly," he said. "I mean, I know what I did wasn't very nice, but it doesn't affect what I do on the ice; and I know that teams like the guys who have good off-ice conduct too, but, honestly, that was my first blemish, and if people weren't so provocative I wouldn't be at risk to do something like that again."
"You're a hockey player?" Alizabeth asked.
He looked up at her. "Yeah," he replied. "You're one of the few– but I guess it's probably because you've heard the name and seen the face and not realized they belong together."
Alizabeth waited to see if he was going to volunteer his name, but he remained silent for awhile, having resumed his staring at the seat across from him.
"And the worst part is that my coach hates me," he said.
"Why?" Alizabeth asked.
"– if I know," he replied. "And it's the same with pretty much everybody in Swift Current, like, why does everybody hate me here? What did I do to any of them? It wasn't like they lost any beloved players as far as I know. Or do they think I'm going to go out on rampages until everyone's house has a hippy bus paint job? It wasn't like I went out on a rampage in Brandon either."
"People are weird like that sometimes," Alizabeth said.
"Don't I know it," he muttered.
Alizabeth watched as he took a portion of the whipped topping into his mouth; she was pretty sure the conversation was now over — being as she didn't dare ask another one of the hundreds of questions flying around inside her head."

Thursday, July 02, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 2

Word Count: 12,013

Summary of Events:
Alizabeth arrived at the restaurant for the beginning of her shift and listened as her fellow waitresses got into their daily argument. Chalmers practised with his teammates and got into a lengthy discourse with goaltender Tyler Ellenwood about how ridiculously young some people were starting their children into athletics. Later on Chalmers had his phone taken away for texting at the table and was required to clear the table and load the dishwasher, which he did reluctantly before leaving the house and finding a small diner-style restaurant where he stopped at.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Nervously Alizabeth looked at the new customer; he looked to be in a terrifying mood, and he'd gone and sat down in her section. Like it or not, she'd have to go and give him a menu.
He had moderately long and somewhat tousled looking dark brown hair on the top of his head, with the hair getting shorter as it went down the sides and back. His face was sharp-edged, his jaw set sternly.
For clothes he was wearing a leather jacket, well-worn but still dark-coloured jeans, and somewhat snugger-fitting more retro sneaker-style shoes, which were resting up on the empty seat across from him; good thing Sheryll had gone home for the night or she would've been out there getting mad at him.
Taking up a menu, Alizabeth took a deep breath and walked out into the dining area and up to his table. She noticed his features seemed to soften slightly, and he looked like he was listening, but he kept his face turned down toward the table.
"Good evening," Alizabeth said as pleasantly as she could. "My name is Alizabeth and I will be your waitress tonight; are you just going to peruse the menu, or would you like something to start?"
"Peruse," he replied in a voice whose lowness surprised her.
"Alright, I'll leave it to you then," Alizabeth said.
Turning away from the table, Alizabeth maintained an even stride, even though she did kind of want to run away from him. From a distance he hadn't looked as big as he did up close, she guessed he was just about as tall as her dad, and he looked slightly broader too — although the Toveruds were a narrowly-built family.
Back in relative safety behind the counter, Alizabeth watched to see when he was ready to order. He flipped through the menu one way, then back and forth, and then after awhile he opened his jacket and slid it off his arms, revealing a navy-blue t-shirt that looked mottled like light grey sweats always were.
Even from this about twenty feet away Alizabeth could tell he was no slouch; his forearms were even muscular, as were his upper arms which — much to her added nervousness — were marked with black ink. Permanently marked.
Being as he'd stopped flipping through the menu, Alizabeth was positive he knew what he wanted to have, so now she was going to have to approach him, but she was leery of doing so again, especially due to the presence of the ink, combined with the simmering anger she sensed.
Finally Alizabeth convinced herself to go out there and went over to his table; this time he looked up at her with deep green eyes that showed more curiosity than anger, although the anger still simmered around the edges."

Wednesday, July 01, 2015

Transformation Beginning: Day 1

Word Count: 6,002

Summary of Events:*
Chalmers arrived in Swift Current and met his billet family, the Zarskis, and got settled in — although he had the distinct impression that he wouldn't enjoy himself in their company. Alizabeth spent most of her morning thinking about the change that she'd noticed in Abigayl and wondering how it'd come about, and how she could experience the same kind of change. Chalmers — due to the Broncos being on their way back from a road trip — was then subjected to going and watching the youngest Zarski — who was five — play on his hockey team.

Excerpt of the Day:
"Loui's team was playing some other team comprised of other little kids in Swift Current that really oughtn't be playing organized hockey — in Chalmers' mind — and Chalmers was mortified to be in attendance.
The score was in the double digits for both teams and neither of the poor goalies had been changed out yet — although the fact that the teams had scored that many goals was somewhat miraculous to Chalmers, being as they spent more of the game down on the ice than on their skates.
Chalmers was glad that he'd only started playing organized hockey in a league of any kind when he was nine years old. He'd been spared the mortification of actually having played in such a game as this.
Loui came out on the ice and Mrs. Zarski went wild. Liam, Leia, and Lyza were playing on their phones, and Mr. Zarski was off at the concession stand getting some snacks — although with the length of time he was taking Chalmers wondered if he wasn't cycling through the line a couple of times, eating it all because Mrs. Zarski seemed to be a diet Nazi around the house.
Chalmers watched as Loui got the puck and promptly fell over. He got to his feet after an opponent had taken the puck, and fell over on the blue line. When he got to his feet he got the puck and turned around, heading for the other net.
Most of the other kids followed after Loui as he headed toward the offensive zone, managing to stay on his feet all the way over the blue line into the zone. Partway through the zone Loui fell down, but then got to his feet, the puck still near his stick, and looked around at the other players who were all skating around the central zone doing nothing.
Turning around, Loui headed back to them, leaving the puck behind, and inciting his mother to go almost completely mad, getting to her feet and pounding the glass, desperately begging Loui to go back and get the puck.
The goalie go up off the ice and skated over to the puck, skating forward, he went all the way to the blue line and shot the puck; it passed through the central zone past all of the little forwards and defensemen who were just skating around and falling over for no apparent reason, and went right past the other goalie's feet as he sat across the goal line.
Instantly the red light went on and the horn went off — being as it went off for both teams when they scored — and everyone on the ice cheered . . . at least until Loui's team realized they'd been scored on.
The kids set up for a face-off again and the puck was dropped, with the two centres collapsing onto the puck and covering it, causing there to be need for another face-off. Rolling his eyes, Chalmers watched the spectacle continue."

*this month I'm trying writing a novel without chapters.