It’s #WIPpet Wednesday again!

The purpose of K.L,Schwengel’s brainchild is to encourage writers to move their WIPs to publication by posting excerpts related to the date.

Until July, I will be posting excerpts from two of my Trueborn WIPs (works-in-progress);

  • Chameleon’s Dish, Trueborn Weft Series fantasy novel.

  • Bounded by a Nutshell, a Trueborn Warp Series Star Trek fan fiction novel.

These two series are interwoven. The plan is to offer the Warp Series fan fiction freely, and eventually publish the original fantasy Weft Series for sale.

This week, we return to Chameleon’s Dish. I played with the math a little to choose today’s passage: Today is May 29, 2013. I added 2+9=11, so we will visit Chapter 11. Adding the month and the last two digits of the year gives us 5+13=18, so there are 18 (mostly short) paragraphs (which also carries us to the point in the draft where I inexplicable repeat the entire passage – urp!).

I rudely jumped into the middle of these characters’ lives a fortnight back, with no introduction whatsoever. So, today, I introduce Henry, a boy of about 11 years, living in Elizabethan England, near London, and the mysterious girl-child he has been tracking (who, at this point, is nameless)…

This scene appears as originally written, cleaned up a bit for an audience. I think it’s only fair to say that I have had a few plot tribbles occur since, and this scene will likely look quite different in the next draft…


It was late the next even when Henry first heard the low, urgent sound. At first, he could not identify it, and it did not cause alarms amongst the wild creatures here.

Was it the faerie-child?

He wasn’t sure when he had begun to think of the strange visitor as a faerie-girl, but he trusted the instinct. He followed the sound, traced the tiny signs that were the only evidence that she had been this way…..the tail of a wood mouse, a few threads of wool, the scent where she had voided….

And, all at once, he was upon her – a naked and sweating girlchild lying at the base of a huge grandmother of a pine, curled on her side, moaning with soft, quick breaths.

She did not seem awake, and, despite the chill of the air, she was sweating with the effort of the panting.

Henry hung back for a while, watching. The faerie-folk were neither kind nor cruel; they lived as wild things, and wildness was in their minds. Even a child would not suffer a mortal to touch her if she did not choose to be touched.

“Father – !” A choked word, and it came somewhat strange-sounding to his ears, but in the Queen’s own English, nonetheless.

A changeling, perhaps? A faerie child placed with a human family….?

“Father!” The voice was a little stronger, and she sat up, crookedly, her eyes wild and unseeing. In the deepening gloom, they glowed, catlike. Her face was pale and frightened.

Henry stepped forward slightly, and called to her, “I don’t think your father is here. I am called Henry. I will help you if you wish it, and if I can.”

“I cannot see you – and I burn with Father’s soulfires. Can you help?”

“I have made a shelter not far from here. I have blankets and food and a fire. I have some medicines – will they work on your kind?”

An OPEN invitation! Come join us

“I do not know. My kind – I am not like you. My father – Father! I have lost thee, Father, and with thee, myself” –  she broke off, muttering in a tongue he had never heard – Henry had an ear for tongues. There was the sound of delirium in her voice, and he could feel the force of her loss.

“Will you let me help you?”

“It seems the only logical choice,” she said, and the delirium had been replaced by a thoughtful tone. “If you will trust me, I will also trust you – for I certainly cannot survive here without your help.”

“Can you walk?” He came close and helped her to her feet; but she swayed and nearly fell, and was too close to his own size for him to support her. “No, be at ease, young one – I will make a travios and carry you upon it. have you any clothes – the night grows cold.”

“In the tree?’ It was a doubtful and uncertain question; Henry scouted around the tree and found a tidy, vine-wrapped bundle.

“Here, I have them.”


Comments? Questions? Observations? I love feedback! Drop it in the comment receptacle below – and click on the button below to read more great excerpts from other #WIPpeteers!