Day 16 & 17 of 365

Mylard threw a punch into the air randomly as she felt the random tug on her foot again. To her surprise, it connected with something. At first, she thought it was Tomkin, but after another scream from her rival from far away, she realized it had to be something else. Mylard swung again hitting it again. This time it hit something vulnerable. The creature tugging on her pulled away. She kicked now hitting it again. The creature withdrew.

Still scrambling in the dark Mylard found something strange at her fingertips. It was a smooth surface. When she touched the room changed again. A bright light blinded her and Tomkin. It startled the girls as the creatures retreated and what looked like the outdoors appeared. Only it was fabricated. Everything around them was fake. Fake grass, a bright light that tried to mimic the sun, strange scents that reminded them of flowers, plastic flowers for that matter were planted around them.

“Uhhhh…Tomkin,” Mylard said.

“Uhhhh…yeah?”

“Touch the black boxes. They change the room,” Mylard said. Tomkin nodded and turned around looking for any of the boxes.

Mylard spotted it across a fake pond which was made of paper. She walked over to it and touched it. The room shifted again. This time they were on a spaceship.

To be continued…

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Day 15 of 365

Both girls continued their struggle inside the strange room. Tomkin’s glasses didn’t do much to help as she tried to figure her way out of the room. She spotted something strange off to the side as she wandered around. It was a tiny black box. Tomkin walked over to it, tripping several times as her depth perception was interrupted by the strobe lights.

Mylard struggled the breath had been knocked out of her when Tomkin had fallen on top. She rolled over to her side trying to breathe and figure out how to navigate her overwhelmed senses. The stench was getting to her and she wanted to hurl. Tomkin looked like she was ignoring the smell as she walked away. Mylard pulled herself together and stood up. A little woozy but she kept her balance.

Back in front of the screens, Valrose was excitingly narrating the girls, “Look at that, I think Tomkin might be finding her way of this maze sooner than Mylard if she gets that box open. But Mylard is smart so who knows? Who are you rooting for? Remember all cash bets close the moment these girls get out of the room. If my estimations are right, and they usually are, I’m gonna say these two will figure their way out in about 10 minutes! So get your bets in!” he reminded the crowd watching the show. His eyebrows did the shuffle they were famous for.

Tomkin reached out touching the box. The moment she did all the sirens and lights abruptly turned off. They were in pitch darkness with the awful stench.

“What. Did. You. Do?” Mylard asked.

“Uhhh…I––AHHH!” Tomkin screamed as something grabbed her leg and pulled down. She found herself trying to fumble at her laser gun and shoot it but just as it had touched her leg it was gone, “WHAT THE FUUUUUUUUUUUU–––”

Mylard turned abruptly toward the sound of Tomkin’s screams but as she did something tugged at her right arm causing her to trip and fall. The surface of the ground had changed. It felt like cold dirt now instead of the flat hard room. She twisted around trying to look but the darkness only consumed her.

TO BE CONTINUED…

Day 14 of 365

Mylard found another dead end. Her frown was starting to droop and she wanted to cry. It’d been nearly half an hour of circles and she felt so confused. She took a deep breath and turned away from the dead end. She tensed hearing a scream which meant that one of her opponents was enduring something horrible. She hoped it wouldn’t be too painful, but was doubtful hearing the screaming. A moment later the intense yelling ended and the maze returned to its silence. Mylard had stopped moving during the yelling.

Taking another deep breath the young woman started again. She was remembering the last thing her sister had said to her. Just do your best Mylard. We know you’ll make everyone proud. She reminded herself of how much an honor this was and how grateful she was to be entered. It didn’t feel great to be in this terrifying maze, but the riches and honor would be worth it. She just wanted to do right by her older sister.

Turning a corner Mylard was surprised to see a clearing an in the center the glowing light of the ring. It was on a blue table and raised up. She froze taking in the sight. The rules were clear. Get the ring and place it on your finger to win. Mylard took a small step towards it, paused and searched. She wondered what would be on her way to get it. In every episode of the game, she had watched there was always something that prevented the last pair girls from getting to the ring.

Seeing nothing obvious she clutched the stun gun closer and inched carefully toward the ring. She felt like she was getting too close as she kept stepping toward it. Just as she reached the first step Tomkin appeared. Her orange hair was tangled and several scratch marks were bleeding down her stomach and arms. She looked around wildly wondering how she’d gotten to the clearing.

Mylard ran up the stairs hoping that it wouldn’t be a mistake. It was. The first step disappeared from her and Mylard found herself falling into someplace dark. She landed hard on a flat surface. Lamps flashed around her in a blinding manner and a high pitched noise filled her ears. But the thing that confused her was the stench. It was horrific and she couldn’t even describe it, but it made her want to vomit.

Valrose delighted that they had reached the clearing announced, “We’re in the final stage Ringers! Shall we see who gets to the ring first? There’s a poll up and running, tap your screen to tell us who you think will win! Mylard a regular girl who just somehow by chance got here, OR Tomkin, the legacy who has to live up to the pressure of two winning women!”

Tomkin froze seeing Mylard suddenly disappear. She had been there one second and then the next she wasn’t. She looked around wondering if the panther would follow her into this clearing. She didn’t want to make the same mistake as Mylard so she skipped the first step. The second one was solid. Breathing a sigh of relief she started toward the third but found her feet glued. Tomkin jerked at them but they were firm. Confused she looked down trying to–suddenly she was falling into the abyss.

Tomkin fell hard on top of Mylard who had barely stood up before being knocked back down. The wind knocked out of both girls and all senses being confused, made everything harder. They groaned and yelled trying to find themselves in the dark.

“OW! GET OFF!” Mylard yelled pushing Tomkin hard. Tomkin found herself suddenly hitting a wall. She yelped as one of her deep scratches got pressed by something.

It became apparent that both girls were in a tiny room of some making. Their senses were meant to be entirely overwhelmed by the experience. Tomkin closed her eyes and pulled her sunglasses down. It helped a little with the light. She turned around trying to understand what was going on.

To be continued…

Day 12 & 13 of 365

So I did start writing the other night but I literally fell asleep on my keyboard. When I check back I apparently only made it through one sentence. Did not realize I was that tired while writing. So we’re gonna just count this long post for both.


The clip faded off of Valrose and Mylard into the pre-game Valrose and Tomkin. Tomkin smiled, relaxed with a cup of tea in her hand. Valrose leaned forward.

“Tomkin, your mother, and grandmother were both champions of this game, how does it feel to be the third generation?” he asked. Tomkin suppressed the urge to punch him.

“Well, it’s an honor. I wouldn’t be here without them. Thanks, Mom! Thanks, Grandma,” she said waving to the camera with her eyes gleaming. She smiled.

“Do you feel that gives you an advantage at all?”

“Not really. After all, I still have to do all the hard work, and live up to the expectations,” she said with a coy smile. “The only advantage I have is the stories of being in the game.”

Valrose laughed his fake laugh, “Fair enough Tomkin. It’s a pleasure getting to know you. Now any advice you have for the contestants who want to enter next year?”

“Just do it. You’ll figure it out once you find out you’re in,” she said.

“Thanks,” Valrose said.

The screen flashed back to the present Valrose in his flashy suit and commentary of the ongoing game. The two girls were still in the maze with their stun guns. Tomkin was running from something. Her eyes and expression of fear paired with her frequent glances over the shoulder. She slipped and fell hard. Valrose was quick to tell the crowd about the nasty fall. Tomkin winced pulling herself up quickly despite the bit of blood dripping from her elbows and chin. She spun around looking for her stun gun. It was a few feet away from her, but just as she began toward it. A large panther jumped out.

Tomkin held herself prepared to dart into the bushes. The panther eyed at her his tail flicking in anger. She found her eyes darting at the stun gun which was now between them and the large cat. Her thoughts raced. And then she moved. A split-second later claws dug into her back as she grasped at the gun. The screams were loud and she somehow found her fingers around it. She threw her shoulder over as the panther ripped at her back and then shot. The stun gun hit the panther in the shoulder. It yowled angrily but released and went down.

Tomkin found herself bleeding but still in the game. She pulled herself up, wary of the unconscious beast and limped into the maze.

To be continued…

Day 10 of 365

Continuation of yesterday’s short story. This one is fun, will have some additional assets later this week to go with this tale. Hope your week is going well!

~Kendall


“Welcome back to RING! I’m your host Valrose Meteor! If you’re just turning into this exciting race of Ring we are now down to our final two players. Two ferocious women that have taken out the 20 other females in this game. One’s saucy and sweet and the other is spicy with a little kick to it. If you haven’t been following us for the earlier part of the game make sure that you catch up on our app! RING! is the name of it!” A loud charismatic man shouted at the camera with a grin that felt like it was its own entity.

Behind him, the screen sparkled to life and focused on the individual women competing. They were running in a small maze with stun guns. Mylard was short with bright purple hair with a couple freckles. She found herself one of the remaining two contestants in this massive competition, and honestly, she was terrified. She felt like every moment leading up to this had been on big mistake after another. There was no possible way she could get to this point.

The camera shot panned away from Mylard to Tomkin a tall woman with orange hair that flowed straight down to the violet tips. She had a pair of sunshades propped up as a headband to keep her hair out of the way. Her frosted lipstick matched the shade of her dyed hair and glittery eye makeup. She was chewing a stick of gum and carried her stun gun over her shoulder casually. Tomkin seemed comfortable walking through the maze waiting for the inevitable confrontation with Mylard. Contrary to her relaxed look her thoughts were racing. There’s no way I’m winning this. I’m up against Mylard of all people. She’s going to get me before I get the ring.

Valrose Meteor popped back into the frame as the cameras continue following the girls. “How ’bout that Ringers! Lets recap who these fine ladies are and find out what their defeated rivals think of them!”

Close up shots of their faces and quotes from when they started the game 72 hours earlier flashed across the screen. This Mylard has her hair in a braid to the side. She attempted to smile but Valrose held the stage.

 

Day 8 of 365

Who’s ready for this ending?
~Kendall

Part One | Part Two | Part Three | Part Four | Part Five | Part Six


Verona fired first. He shot Fell squarely in the chest with a laser, killing the alien. Ellis could be heard screaming as far as the street. Mr. Sandburg shot Verona in the right shoulder and reloaded, preparing to hit Verona in the head. The other Sandburg aliens scattered.

The shooting only lasted a minute but when Verona was done he’d shot everyone but Ellis, Marilyn, and Mr. Sandburg. Verona was bleeding heavily. Marilyn was angry at watching her family and friends die. Her inner voice screamed in agony watching family members dying. She ignored it. Mr. Sandburg had one last shot.

The sirens could be heard in the distant. Police were coming. The aliens could also hear another alarm, one none of the humans could. It was a buzzing like bees that echoed in their heads. The sound of angry officials. They had made a disturbance, and in their exile that could mean death.

“Better end this now,” Mr. Sandburg said. Verona sighed and nodded. They shot at each other. Both died moments later.

Marilyn was left standing next to Ellis her mind felt blank and a creeping loneliness began to fill her. She was alone. She looked at the bodies of Diana, Preston, Fell, Derrik, Mrs. Sandburg, and Mr. Sandburg. All slain for a foolish bargain that probably wouldn’t work. She found herself crying. The emotions of this host holding on to her. Marilyn stumbled out of the house and ran into the woods just as someone knocked on the door.

Stories of the night the Sandburgs were slain became common and turned into ghosts before the lore took hold of the house. No one knew who the strange man was and why he held an odd weapon. Even as long as Ellis lived no one understood what had gone down.

Ellis was the first cast as a victim of the crimes, but the press turned on him making him the murderer for a while. He was declared a lunatic, admitted to several hospitals upon making claims that the Sandburgs were all aliens. Let out on good behavior he finally found an alien of whom recognized him. He babbled to her about everything he had seen and heard, asked many questions, and finally realized it was Marilyn’s alien. But the moment he did she was gone leaving him feeling insane. All that he could conclude was that he made the mistake of returning to the house.

The End.

Day 6 & 7 of 365

Sorry for the wait. Flew back home to NYC yesterday and then was preoccupied with cleaning and organizing.
~Kendall

Part One | Part Two | Part Three | Part Four | Part 5


The Sandburg aliens held their tongue after Verona’s lashing out. Despite all their puff, Verona had more leverage than they did. Ellis felt completely in the dark watching this. What on Earth was going on?

“How did you find us?” Mrs. Sandburg asked. She had been quiet for awhile but the question had been stirring in her mind since Verona had walked through the door.

Verona’s eyes darted over to Mrs. Sandburg and then back to Mr. Sandburg. When he spoke he chose his words carefully, “Perhaps your family isn’t as stealthy as you think it is or maybe I’m just that good of a tracker.” He wanted to pull the trigger and hit one of these fools with his laser gun.

“Why haven’t you changed your skin? You’re still wearing the same human,” Fell asked.

Verona glared. He pulled his gun up aiming it at Mrs. Sandburg who was the closest Sandburg to him. “Curious how it goes when you find the right skin.”

“Your exile is up for debate, isn’t it?” Fell hissed. His eyes widened and his mouth dropped a bit. “You’re trying to get yours lifted by turning one of us in!”

Verona nearly pulled the trigger. He bit his lip. “Just let me take one of you to the ship. I just want my freedom. I miss the stars,” he said. “Please.”

“Begging isn’t very appealing,” Marilyn snapped. “How dare you think that bringing one of us would put you in good favor with the government!”

To be continued.

Day 2 of 365

Here’s part two. I need to pick an earlier time to do these at. Hope you like the continuation.

Part One if you haven’t had a chance to read it.

~Kendall


 

Ellis did not like the way Mr. Sandburg stared at him with dark eyes. He nearly lost his nerve. “Mr. Sandburg, please tell me–”

“If you come back Ellis I will kill you,” Mr. Sandburg’s alien snapped. Mr. Sandburg tried to scream again for help.

Ellis was taken aback. He’d fancied Diana for the past year but had he’d known how rude her father was he wouldn’t have wasted hours daydreaming about going out with her. He swallowed his pride and walked away from the house feeling that there wasn’t something right about Mr. Sandburg’s abrupt anger. It would be many hours of analyzing the moment and weeks after the Sandburgs had suddenly disappeared from the town that he realized his mistake. It wasn’t that he left the house it was that he returned…again.

When Ellis returned, slipping around the back part of the house to see if he could get Diana outside to talk, well that’s when Derrik knocked him out. It was a shovel of course. Straight over the top of Ellis’s head, any lower and he could have died. Derrik dragged him inside and tied him up.

The Sandburg aliens stood around him discussing the best way to address this horrible mess. It’d been nearly 300 years since they’d had a similar issue. At that time they were aboard a ship sailing between America and Europe. The family they had assimilated into were beginning to draw attention considering they were stuck on the boat with the same people. Several people brought the strange reactions of the Hendale family to the attention of the captain. It was discussed that they should be thrown overboard should they continue to threaten guests on the boat. The situation escalated quickly leaving several people dead and others in a deadly hostage situation. In the end, the aliens had escaped by assimilating into a pod of dolphins. The rest of the crew and guests upon the boat found themselves paranoid and starving until they drifted into an island.

“Well I think we should kill him before he alerts the police,” Diana said with her hands resting on the knife.

“We can’t kill him,” Marilyn said. “His murder will attract more attention than us letting him go. At least we can spin the story that he’s going crazy if we let him go. Not that many people believe in aliens these days.”

“I agree with Marilyn,” Preston said.

“I think you’re all giving me a headache,” Fell interjected.

Mr. Sandburg stood and quietly said, “I think we should let him go. I’ve done research and if we tell enough tall tales around the idea that he is impulsive and ignorant, well I presume he’ll be considered crazy.”

“I think you should let me go,” Ellis said. He’d become conscious a couple minutes before and was feeling a bit nauseated.  “I can say I hit my head on something.” He glared at the family.

To Be Continued

LitCon 2017 |Where Fiction Meets Real

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babelfishHello, I’m your host Caesar Flickerman!

Now if you haven’t yet, please open your swag bag where you will find a small glass with a yellow Babel Fish provided by The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy. Please put the fish in your ear for translating. This will allow you to communicate will all the literary characters today as well as the authors.

Welcome to the first LitCon! LitCon is a new event connecting readers, authors, and fictional literary characters. We have a great portal system to bring everyone through so we can enjoy our time discussing our fictional universes and create friendships. Thank you for all attending LitCon! I want to give a shoutout to Eventbrite for all their help in planning this conference! Without their help, we would not be sitting here talking. I also want to thank Hogwarts for everything. Jo, Ms. Rowling, has been very gracious in talking with that magical world to help pull strings to create those realm portals. They are amazing hosts and I can’t thank you enough for helping us put LitCon on!

Now if you all were looking at your schedules this conference spans two days but is suspended in time. We worked with some lovely people from the Wizarding World of Harry Potter to create this little bubble for everyone to participate. Thank you to Hogwarts for hosting us on these days. The Room of Requirement has a great space for our conference.

Thank you for all attending our panels today. The schedule is in the swag bag if you need a refresher after this. We will be momentarily starting off with our first panel Landscapes & Cityscapes: World Building and Living Practically at 8:30 AM. If you’re looking for the time the Room of Requirement has a giant clock over to your left to look at. Following that, we have a great panel about Literary Dishes: Descriptions in Appetites at 10:15 till lunch at noon. We will have some dishes at the end which the House Elves insisted on preparing. If you have any allergies or issues regarding that please let me or the volunteer staff know. Speaking of which can we please give them a big applause for helping us out!

Following lunch at 13:30 we will have a lovely discussion in a roundtable about Growing Up Literary: Characters & Authors. I should not have favorites but I’m really excited about it! Our following panel is Transportation in Your Fiction: The Realities of Travel at 3:15. At 4:45 we will have a break for dinner and at 6:30 our keynote speaker, Ransom Riggs, the author of Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children will be talking. After we will have a quick statement about tomorrow’s events and then we can turn in or play games and discuss. Many of the fictional characters and authors have provided alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverage samples from fictional worlds to test.

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I’m so glad you could all make it and look forward to talking to many of you as the days progress. As a reminder, the volunteer staff of LitCon are all here for you and if you need any help please don’t hesitate to let us know. Thank you for your participation and a big thank you to the speakers, for giving your time. Now presenting LitCon 2017!


Hope you enjoyed reading this! I had fun designing and coming up with an idea for the concept. It’s a little different from what I usually do, but a step toward many projects I want to accomplish during the 2017 year. Had fun animating the fish and illustrating Caesar Flickerman in the colors I picked for the theme of this fictional conference.

If they are questions around this silly post let me know! I, of course, have been coming up with more random ideas related to events in LitCon. I hope you enjoyed this and more posts coming soon!

Happy reading friends!
~Kendall H.

Sidenote: I do not own any of these characters. This is intended for fun and I did not get paid for any content. The writing and drawing in here are my own, but all characters are copyrighted to their authors. All for fun!

Art Updates

Got some good art projects on the way. Been trying to get as much done as possible during the day, but gotta do some other work and family time too. Here’s a little preview of an upcoming project I’ve been working on for the last couple days. Got a lot to work on. The lettering styles don’t match as well when transferred from hand drawn to digitally illustrated. I spent awhile vectoring it only to scrap that whole lead because it didn’t fit the style I want. I have to add the last words in the quote which are ‘I am one’ and design the illustration. It’s from the book The Abyss Surrounds Us by Emily Skrutskie. She asked me to do this since I had a few lazy days of waking up after 9 AM. It’s technically punishment for waking up late, but I always have fun working on these so maybe I should sleep in more.

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I hope to have a finished version done by the end of the weekend, but no promises since I have so different projects to do! I always get so busy working on gifts during the holiday season. Not to mention that now I’ve been asked to learn Sketch for UI/UX design work. It’s not hard but it’s a different workflow from Adobe products so the key commands are going to take some getting use to. I just finished listening to the Animalators episode with John Schlemmer the Motion Lead at Google. I’m fascinated by the idea of incorporating motion into UI. I’m going to read through the Material Design Motion guidelines for some extra homework. I’m really interested in how all of that works. Who knows maybe it’ll get me a job at Google? Probably not, but I’m interested in reading that nonetheless.

Here’s a quick update on that dog Xmas gift I’m working on. Not satisfied with the coloring style, might return to that black and white version but clean it up. It could be a case of more detail too. I’m in that middle area of not sketchy nor polished enough.

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That does it for the art updates of the day. I will be working on lots tomorrow so tune in for the rest of the work and final versions!

~Kendall