Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Bellicose

"Thaddeus, why is it that you and Amy get into all the same fights, but you always come out of it worse?"

Thaddeus MacGregor grinned up at the healer. "Got to keep things interesting for you, Andreas."

Andreas sighed with amused weariness and picked up a pot filled with a pungent herb poultice. "Just because I don't spend all day beating people up..."

"No, you spend your time running errands for your mother, studying, playing soccer, or hanging out with Vin. What's up with that, anyway? He doesn't talk much - ouch, that stings."

"It's supposed to." Andreas set down the pot and selected a roll of gauze. "Vin only talks when he's got something to say. Unlike some people." He grinned and wrapped Thaddeus' arm with the gauze. "Keep that arm still and don't punch anyone with it."

"'And'? You think I can punch someone without moving my arm?"

Andreas cuffed Thaddeus on his other shoulder. "Oh, hush. How does Amy stand partnering with you in everything?"

"She loves me," said Thaddeus breezily. "Now, Gunter's going to fight what's-his-face, Melusine's boy, Jared, at noon outside the arboreum. Want to go?"

"Maybe, I'm off duty in a few minutes. Don't smirk at me like that."

"Who's smirking?" Thaddeus traipsed out of the healer's room.

Andreas shook his head, the corner of his mouth tweaked up, and went to replace the roll of gauze on the shelf. As he did, he looked out of the window onto the broad lawns of the Besen Institute and the people scattered in groups or alone over them.

Yes, he thought as he watched Demyan Olston pass something that looked suspiciously like a bag of money to a stringy-looking upperclassman, he would go to the fight. He knew why Thaddeus was smirking - wasn't it hypocritical, the good little healer boy watching others beat on one another? It was, he supposed, not a good show for him to do so. He also did not care.

People just didn't get it. Was it such a stretch of the mind that he could enjoy watching fights? That he understood when Vin described, always with that edge of guilt, his savage joy when he took someone down? Was it really that strange for his heart to beat faster at a well-executed strike?

No, no, no - Andreas shook his head to himself. His last thought was false. It was not so much the quality of a hit that impressed him but the strength behind it. That fight two weeks ago, when Lancaster and Thaddeus had it out on the roof of the library - he hadn't gasped when Thaddeus smacked Lancaster in the face, sending him skittering perilously to the edge, because the blow was precise.

He'd gasped because it was thrilling to watch Thaddeus' immense hatred transmuted into raw power.

Just like how he'd felt curiously light-headed the time he'd seen in action why Vin was called the Mind Butcher. How his breath came faster as Vin methodically broke the robbers' minds, leaving them sobbing incoherently on the floor of the storage room. His pulse had raced from his chest like a stag chased through deep woods.

It wasn't fear.

Andreas sighed, pushed his sandy hair off his forehead, and glanced at the waterclock. Eleven-hundred and thirty; he was off duty now. There was just enough time to grab a quick lunch from the mess before proceeding to the arboreum.

He contemplated as he pulled off the healer quartz. Gunter was taller and broader, but Jared had better elemental magic; both of them were capable of strategic thought and brute force in combination. Neither of them lost often, and if they did it was only after a long struggle.

It would be a good fight.

He was going to enjoy it.

--

Andreas is a good kid, really.

Introspection/flashback analysis scenes are another kind of scene I write a lot. How'd I do?

Also, tell me directly if the characters get hard to keep track of.

4 comments:

  1. I confess i haven't read all your posts about your project so it *is* hard for me to keep track of the characters, but that is *MY* bad, so there. When i started med school i started with the idea of becoming a psychiatrist, so introspection? throw it my way! It's never enough! i really liked this extract, it keeps you interested till the very end, and now i want a description of that fight...from andreas' point of view :-) so if you lack ideas for a post in the future, give us that!

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  2. Would it help at all if I had a cheat sheet with the characters' names and some basic info?

    Hm, I don't know if I can make any old fight scene interesting (I thought I could in 6th grade, haha) but I do intend to write more from Andreas' POV. I'll keep the suggestion in mind if I ever need a good challenge.

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  3. Yep a cheat sheet would be a great idea to put at the end of each post about your project, it would be helpful for those coming around for the first time and those who haven't quite kept up with everything even thyough they've been around :-P
    So i look forward to reading something more about this story too, since i see you are planning on writing with consistency four times a week from here on out, you could devote some of that time to a continuation of sorts :-) you could even draw a scene you wrote if you felt a whole lot inspired =)
    Have a good weekend!

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  4. All right, I'll get to work on that. It might even help me keep all the characters in order...haha.

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