Category Archives: Neubrandenwolf

#LoveWritingChallenge – Male Characters

I’m participating in the #LoveWritingChallenge by Katie Kling. For more information see the introduction post.

This weeks theme are Characters and today is all about Male Characters.
To make things easier for myself I will focus on the characters in three of my longer stories:

Though I might add more from other stories.
For stuff about our characters from Warlords feel free to check out our Facebook Page.

So let’s take a look at the guys in my stories…

Just like I don’t care much about gender roles with my ladies, are my guys not typical males. Their compassionate and supportive of their ladies/lady friends, some would even be considered as feminine. Though that doesn’t mean they wont mistreat my girls. With male characters it’s easier to explore certain aspects of personalities and the asshole is kind of one of my favourites to write. It’s just so much fun…
Somehow are males still kind of the default gender I use for stories, especially short stories. On occasion I find myself wondering: Would it change the story if I wrote about a woman instead (especially the first chapter of the NBWolf)? Most of the time the character stays male…

Anyway, let’s talk jobs.

As I did with the ladies let’s take a look at what my guys do for a living. Which if I really think about it, isn’t that much…
Though I do have: cook, teacher, programmer, zoo keeper/veterinarian, biologist, accountant, advisor, soldier and painter/graphic designer. Well, and at least one king. 😀
I’m not entirely sure, why I have most of the jobs for the ladies figured out, but the guys either struggle to find a proper job or just don’t really have a description for what they do…

And what about their relationships?

As they mostly are counterparts to the females this answer isn’t much different to the previous one. Though it feels like they are a bit more open about things than the ladies. A lot of them don’t mind one night stands where the ladies would contemplate them a lot more. They flirt, they talk back and they’re usually stronger and taller than the women. But I still wouldn’t change it, because, well, it’s part of who they are…
On the other hand are they not as progressed when it comes to sexual preferences as I only have (two) side characters that are gay. The only lead character with a different orientation is pansexual, which I only realized after learning about it.

Special cases

Well, let’s take a look at some of them that are not the typical male characters. This time two of them are even lead characters.

Andrew (TUO)

Andrew is a vampire-like creature and Michaels older half-brother. He is a gentle person that doesn’t like conflict and deals badly with change and loss and sometimes reacts the way a little child would. This is mostly due to his birth conditions, as his mother was turned while she was pregnant with him. When he loves, he loves with his whole heart and would do anything to make whoever that might be happy.
What I like about him: He was one of the first characters I created for TUO and therefore has a special place in my heart. He’s just this cute little guy that you just want to hug and keep save, even if he can kick your ass if you threaten his family…

Kurth (TQW)

He’s a young boy that aims to become a strong knight to protect the queen. Kurth can be quite naive, but his heart is in the right place, even if his tongue sometimes gets the better of him. He faces a lot of backlash from his peers and superiors, but that doesn’t mean he doesn’t give it his best.
What I like about him: He provides a different look on some of the story aspects and he’s this dorky little guy, that’s just fun to write.

Amir (NBWolf)

Amir is a kind person burdened with a cruel fate. He is the lone survivor of his village, where he used to be a respected biologist (plant research), now he is nothing more than a refugee trying to find his footing again. It’s hard for him to adapt, especially with his condition as a newly turned Werwolf without any control.
What I like about him: Like Rasha am I still exploring what makes him, him and the more I do, the worse I feel about what will happen to him…

Boys, boys, boys

Just like my ladies, do I let the boys tell me what they like and who they are. Somehow it’s easier for me to write them. I’m somehow less worried about writing clichés in their cases, but I also prefer exploring things with them. It’s a bit strange and I’m not sure why that is…
Anyway, see you tomorrow when I’ll talk about Point of Views (POVs)
PoiSonPaiNter
P.S. This is my 400th post. o.O

#LoveWritingChallenge – Quotes

I’m participating in the #LoveWritingChallenge by Katie Kling. For more information see the introduction post.

This weeks theme are Characters and today is all about Character Quotes.
To make things easier for myself I will focus on the characters in three of my longer stories:

Though I might add more from other stories.
For stuff about our characters from Warlords feel free to check out our Facebook Page.

Say something nice!

Well, this is tricky…mostly because I haven’t written most of the stuff in those three stories and partly because I don’t remember quotes…and some of my favourite quotes are already covered on Facebook with Warlords…but let’s see what I can come up with…and you’ll get a sneak peek through it. 🙂

From TQW:

This one is a spoiler, but not really. Read at your own risk. 😉

As a disbelieving realisation: „The wizard shagged the queen“

I’m not entirely sure why I like this one, but I guess it’s mostly the picture in my head of the boy sitting down when this dawns on him. As I said: Not really a spoiler as this doesn’t tell you when it happened and who it is really about. 😉
And a tiny bit longer (though shortened) scene:

„And what are you learning today?“ [He] asked.
„I drew a bird!“ She told him proudly.
„Well, then let’s take a look at your bird“, [he] declared with a wide smile.
She pulled a parchment with a mazy scribble closer so [he] could see it. „There look“, she proudly presented it to him and [he] raised his eyebrow. With a exaggeratedly confused frown he looked first at the drawing then at his daughter. „A bird you say?“
„YEAH!“ She protested and explained the different parts of the line clutter: „That’s the beak, those are the wings and these are the feet!“
„Daughter, if this is a bird, then I will have to take you collecting herbs again, so you can see a real one“, he taunted her jokingly.
[later]
„Papa look! My horse is finished!“ [She] called out to him and held out another parchment.
„Your horse looks like a bird“, [he] commented with a wide grin and earned the expected indignant „PAPA!“

Of course I’m not telling you who is who here either. 😉

From the NBWolf:

An (unedited) excerpt from the upcoming chapter Water Moon:

„I don’t like this, [XY]“, her girlfriend told her over the phone while she was getting ready.
„Don’t worry Sweetie, I’ll be fine“, she assured her for the umpteenth time.
„But…you don’t know if someone will see you-“
„Honey, we’ve been through this: It’s the middle of the week and I’ve got work tomorrow, I can’t come home to change with the pack“
„I’m just worried“
„I know. I don’t like it either, but I’ll be fine“
„Have you eaten?“
„Yes“
„Enough?“
„More than enough, I’d be surprised if I don’t sink into the lake like the wolf from Little Red Riding Hood“
„[XY]!“
„I’m just kidding! Relax!“

I just like their interaction and if you paid attention so far, you can guess whom it’s about. 😉
I always try to make dialogues and interactions realistic and I think this is a nice example of it.
Well, let’s round this up with a quote that made a couple of people laugh when they read my short story for the Bücherstadtkurier Advent Calendar

The Crib:

“And The Doctor, Superman and DARTH VADER are the Three Wise Men?”
“Yup. They always say one of them is black.”
For a moment Harry quarrelled with himself, then he corrected: “Black: yes; Mass Murderer: No.“

Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this little look at different stories of mine. There are many more stories – especially my short stories – that I could look through for quotes, but as I don’t even know where to look it would take quite some time…
So, if you remember any quote from one of my other works: Feel free to add them in the comments!
See you tomorrow, when I’ll talk about my Male Characters.
PoiSonPaiNter

#LoveWritingChallenge – Naming Characters

I’m participating in the #LoveWritingChallenge by Katie Kling. For more information see the introduction post.

This weeks theme are Characters and today is all about How to find the names.
To make things easier for myself I will focus on the characters in three of my longer stories:

Though I might add more from other stories.
For stuff about our characters from Warlords feel free to check out our Facebook Page.

What’s in a name?

I’m horrible at naming people and cities and countries and have I mentioned characters?
I have either no idea what I should call someone or I keep ending up with the same names…
I already talked a bit about this when I mentioned my usage of Georg(e) and Richard, but that’s only part of the problem…
For most of my stories I go through real life names I have in my mind and then either use them as such (TUO/NBWolf) or change them to fit the story (TQW). I know I could use baby name pages and I sometimes do that, when I have a specific meaning in mind, but that’s rather rare.
Sometimes I try to use names that actually serve a purpose or have some kind of „hidden“ meaning, sometimes I just come across a name that fits the character and keep it that way – or change it if it doesn’t. Though I usually do the meaning part with surnames, at least, if I give people a surname. 😀
In TUO most of my surnames are references to movies and such: There is a family called „van Saken“ originating from „The Fosaken„, another is called „Carfax“ like the abbey where Dracula comes to live in London, another „Verlaine“, which was the name of Bela B.’s character in the German Zombie movie „Garden of Love“ and so on…
For TQW I not only added the rule „royals (or those working for the royal households or those wanting to be as grant as them) add H’s to names“ (e.g. that’s why she’s called Lihsa and not Lisa), but I also pretty much used my Mums family tree as inspiration for the names of a certain family, including her actual name. On the other hand did I make an unsubtle reference to Merlin and Athur by naming the main wizard character Emry and Aturo respectively (For those who don’t know this: Merlin was sometimes called Merlin Emrys and Arturo is the Spanish version of Arthur), not to mention that Sarah isn’t just a princess in name…
By the way: Rasha is an anagram of Sarah, because Nina is an anagram of Anni and I wanted to name those two after two girls by the same name, I know in real life. 😉
So, yeah, my names aren’t really original, but well, so far no one complained about them. 😀
See you tomorrow, when I talk about Quotes from my Characters.
PoiSonPaiNter

#LoveWritingChallenge – Female Characters

As I told you yesterday am I participating in the #LoveWritingChallenge by Katie Kling. For more information see the previous post.

This weeks theme are Characters and today is all about Female Characters.
To make things easier for myself I will focus on the ladies (and characters) in three of my longer stories:

Though I might add more from other stories.
For stuff about our characters from Warlords feel free to check out our Facebook Page.

So let’s take a look at the ladies in my stories…

In general am I not a fan of the Damsel in Distress so most of my ladies are strong and independent, but usually also compassionate about something and sometimes girly.
I’m fairly certain that I only have one girl that is obsessed with her male counterpart, but I still portray this as very unhealthy, at least I would if I had written any of it…
And when I think about it, do I have quite a lot of ladies in my stories, especially in leading roles…Michael’s family alone has about ten important female characters…interesting…
Though I still don’t always manage to pass the Bechdel test, as sometimes those ladies‘ main focus of discussion in a scene is a guy in trouble or at least one of their male family members…

Anyway, let’s talk jobs.

I’m fairy certain that housewife is a non existent job in any of my stories. I have pretty much everything from (kinder garden) teacher, maids, barkeepers/-owners and housekeeper over journalists, psychiatrist, doctors, corporate consultant, lawyers (to-be) up to matriarch and queen.
Usually I try to fit the job to the character and not the other way round, but sometimes it has to be the latter way (if you write about a queen, then you have to make someone queen 😉 ).

And what about their relationships?

I’m not entirely sure any of my ladies have what is generally considered a normal relationship…
Sure some of them got married and stuff, but the circumstances are a bit different.
In TUO I created the concept of the True Mate, which is basically the only partner a (wer)wolf can mate with and expect to conceive a (healthy) child, so some of the couples there are created through that concept, others defy it.
Thinking about it also made me realize that the love-arc in both TQW and TUO follow a similar pattern: Two people fall in love, but stuff and logical reasoning keeps them apart. It’s not innovative, but it fits the characters. They want to be together, but they also know that it’s not a good idea. And I think that’s also a pretty important point: Don’t force a relationship if it might end badly and you already have a bad feeling about it.
Talking about relationships means talking about sexual preferences and I have to admit that those have changed quite a bit over the years. When I first started working on TUO every character was straight, simply because I was forteen and I didn’t really know it any better.
Now I do and my characters come to a headcount of at least two bi, four lesbian (+ three side characters), one ace (and a transgender side character).  It’s not much, but through this they no longer feel like something is missing and they’re not themselves. It just makes so much sense for them…

Special cases

Okay, let’s take a closer look at some of my ladies, all of which are minor lead characters, without giving too much away. I’d talk more about all of them, but then I wont be able to finish the post any time soon…

Rita Desmond (TUO)

Rita is a pure blooded Werwolf and therefore quite peculiar. She would do anything to preserve her race and is therefore not just a well trained doctor and genetics/racial history specialist, but also an executioner. She is also the head of a multi-species (different Therianthropes) asylum for strays.
One of her biggest flaws is that she loves what she is and gets pretty violent towards anyone calling her „human“ and she also looks down on them as the lesser race.
What I like about her: She is one of my few female asshole characters and it’s fun to write her badass side, but also her vulnerability.

Lihsa (TQW)

Lihsa is one of the queens maids and deeply loyal to her. Originating from a small village she came to the castle to become a member of the staff and over the years even became the right hand to the head cook (also female). She can be spunky, but also melancholy, challenging and thought provoking, but most of all: She knows what she wants. It’s not always easy for her to manage her (love) life in the castle, but she gains a certain wisdom from it that even makes the queen admire her for it.
What I like about her: That even though she always receives the bad end of something, she doesn’t lose hope and is strong enough to give something up that is important to her.

Rasha (NBWolf)

Like much of the story in general was Rasha not planned, but writing more about her makes me quite like her. She is one of the few human characters in the story and cares deeply for her wolf friends and lover. Yet at the same time is she a fierce protector of the law and striving to become a lawyer. She has a certain light headedness about her and manages to lighten the mood in almost every situation. Her big heart lets new people in easily and she accepts them as they are and wants to be accepted like that as well. Which isn’t really easy as human fiancée of a wolf, who doesn’t want to turn her(, yet).
What I like about her: Her optimistic personality that I’m still exploring. 😀

Girls, girls, girls

When creating my girls I don’t think about breaking gender roles, I pretty much let them tell me who they are. Sometimes they surprise (e.g. when I discovered that one of them liked girls, when I had already planned for her to get a boyfriend), sometimes it’s a transition of exploring different topics and seeing what fits for the character or how they would react to it.
It’s important to have a variety of characters in a story, just as we have in life.
Life is colourful and fiction should follow its example.
See you tomorrow, when I talk about finding names for my characters…
PoiSonPaiNter

#LoveWritingChallenge

Soo…instead of more Filler posts, I’ve decided to participate in this writing challenge by Katie Kling and her friend Kristin that will last during the month of May. Leave your thanks for this over at DarkFairy’s, who wrote about it first. 😉

What’s the challenge about?

#LoveWritingChallenge is a Social-Media-Parade for Authors.
Katie and Katrin want to share their love for writing and want to know about other peoples projects. That’s why they came up with this cross-media challenge to help people discover new books and get to know new authors.
For this they thought up theme weeks. Each week will be a new theme with seven sub-theme, starting on 1st May.

How can you participate?

Pick one or more themes of the challenge and simply write a post about it, create a picture, make a video or do whatever you like for your Blog or Social Media account. What exactly you’ll be talking about is up to you. You don’t have to write something for each daily theme, you might even make a collection post or something just for the weeks theme. They don’t want to have a strict set of rules.
If you write a blog post, link it to the main post and/or leave a comment there.
If you post something on Instagram, tag @thewritingcat or @katie_kling_autorin.
If you post on Facebook you can tag @autorinkatiekling.
Additionally use the Hashtag #LoveWritingChallenge.
This way they know about the participations and Katie can sum them up in post at the end of the week.

Week One

Die ersten Themen

The first themes

Conclusion

Well, this is what you can expect the following weeks.
Let’s see if I’ll make it through it. 😉
PoiSonPaiNter

Crow Moon

Let’s face it: You all know I’m a lazy Blogger, so you shouldn’t be surprised by the lack of posts recently.
But I’m still kept busy by that writing project I mentioned the other day and I was at another Sabaton concert and I watched through Iron Fist and Wynona Earp and some other things. So yeah…
Yet, you still get part four of the Neubrandenwolf-Tale!
(You can find all chapters in proper order and some more information on this page: Neubrandenwolf)
So, have fun with:

Crow Moon

The slight hysteria following the discovery of his paw print had finally passed and any news regarding it were of the ‚just passing by‘ or ‚just a stray dog‘ variety. Thomas felt save enough to resume his usual routine. With the crows already cawing at him when he walked by, he also looked forward to playing with them.
The week before the full moon he took the bus as usual, but a quite unusual smell tickled his nostrils right away. A wolf. It was rare for him to meet one of his kind, but he recognized them anywhere. Pushed by the people behind him he made his way through the crowd following his nose until he found the source. In one of the double seats in the back sat a man all by himself staring back at him, surprise, fear and recognition written on his face. Since the refugee stream had reached the town Thomas had seen more and more of them regularly on the bus, but this one he certainly hadn’t met before; though he had always wondered if other wolves had come with them. The expression of the other made him wonder whether he had even seen another wolf before, so he made a quick decision and sat down beside him. The two of them just sat there not knowing how to start the conversation, especially in such a public place.
„I’m Thomas“, he finally started, fearing the other would have to get off soon.
„Amir“, the other answered meekly not looking at Thomas, but at one of the men standing in the bus bent, eying them.
To Thomas he seemed like another refugee, so he guessed the two knew each other or the other even knew what Amir was. Thomas looked from the man to Amir and whispered: „Can we talk?“
Amir looked at him for a moment, seemingly searching for something in his eyes, before he waved the other man to them with a nod. He came closer and they exchanged a few words Thomas couldn’t understand.
„Home we talk“, the other man told him, a stern expression on his face.
„Good“, Thomas agreed with a nod.
A few stops later, in one of the other cheaper districts, they got out and Amir and the other guy led him to their flat. They shared it with a few other adults and a few children that eyed him curiously. Amirs friend gave them a quick explanation and a phrase or word was whispered amongst them over and over, he assumed it meant ‚Werwolf‘. The children and women collected their things and soon left the flat, so that the men were alone.
„You wolf?“ Amirs friend asked after a moment, while Thomas was still just standing in the middle of the room, while the others sat on the old and worn couch and armchair or leaned against the wall.
„Yes“, Thomas agreed confidently, even if his flight instinct told him to be ready.
He was in a room with four men he didn’t know, one of them like him and frightened. What if they had lured him here to do something to him? The hair on the back of his neck stood up, but he tried to remain calm; he didn’t want to succumb to prejudices. Not in a situation like this.
„You kill?“ He now wanted to know, measuring him.
„NO!“ Thomas nearly yelled at him in protest.
The other nodded and pointed towards an empty space on the couch. Reluctantly Thomas sat down under watchful eyes before the other continued, waving towards Amir: „He kill“
Thomas‘ gaze landed on him and Amir had his head hung low in submission. „What happened?“ Thomas wanted to, even if his own fear could be heard in his words.
„They send wolf in my village. It kill all. Wife. Children. Family all gone. Me survive and people bring me to flee camp“, he explained, his eyes fixed on his hands. „When moon come wounds heal and then me monster and I kill all. No guns, no stop me“, he continued and Thomas could see the tears welling up inside Amir’s eyes and heard his voice breaking at the memory. „I flee on and meet Yussuf“, he finally looked up and towards the other. „When moon come I warn and he joke, but when me monster he and other“, he tried to explain by demonstrating the missing word by hitting his head.
„Knocked you out?“ Thomas tried.
„Yes“, Amir agreed, „But they no kill. They keep me live and knocked out each moon.“
„He no control“, Yussuf added.
Thomas looked from one to the other before offering: „I could teach you.“
„You control?“ Amir looked at him for the first time, hope shining in his wide open eyes.
„Yes. I can control it“, Thomas confirmed with a nod.
„What you do?“ Yussuf asked, demand in his voice.
„I eat and then run where no one else is“, Thomas gave him the short version.
„You run?“ Amir asked; admiration and surprise in his words.
„Yes. In the fields“, Thomas confirms again and the others exchange a few words.
„I want try“, Amir finally told him; seemingly afraid he would retract his offer.
„Do you have someone you trust that will come with us?“ Thomas tried to phrase as easily understandable as possible.
„That dangerous!“ Amir disagreed.
„Yes, but that is how I learned not to hurt people“, Thomas admitted.
„All trust dead“, Amir said after a moment of silence and looked at his hands again.
„I come“, Yussuf interjected, earning an awed expression by Amir, before adding towards Thomas: „When you want run?“
„The full moon, March 12th, a Sunday“, Thomas told him and Yussuf wrote it down on a slice of paper that lay on the table.
„You help me?“ Amir wanted to know.
„Of course, I’ll show you everything“, Thomas promised and then instructed: „You need to eat a lot before you leave, meat is best. Eat until you’re full. You also need a bag where you can store water and your clothes. Wear wide and old ones.“
Yussuf made more notes and Amir nodded gratefully: „Thank you much, wolf friend!“
[Edit: This is a new scene]
When he had left Thomas had given Amir his phone number and they had agreed to meet up during the days leading up to the full moon. One evening they walked around the nearby lake, chatting.
„What did you do back home?“ Thomas asked, but only earned a confused look; the language barrier wasn’t always easy to overcome. „What was your job?“ He tried again.
„I was – Biologist – I studied plants“, Amir replied, a sparkle in his eyes.
„I wouldn’t have picked you for a plant guy“, Thomas laughed and then explained with a smile: „You don’t look like someone interested in plants.“
„You not look like IT person either“, Amir countered, a smile spreading on his lips.
„Good point“, Thomas agreed and the both of them started laughing.
„The lake is pretty, but not like lakes at home. There many water flowers and beautiful tress around. Not like this“, Amir reminisced looking longingly across the still water.
„Have you been to the park yet?“ Thomas wondered and only earned a shake of the head.
„In winter it’s not as pretty as in spring and summer, but I guess you’d like it there. Lots of plants“, Thomas explained.
„Can we go there?“ Amir quietly asked after a pause.
„Sure“, Thomas agreed with a wide grin.
They were silent for a moment before he asked: „Will you be able to work as a Biologist again?“
Amir only shrugged. „I not know if me allowed to stay. This house“, he paused, searching his mind for the word, „temporarily. Might be we sent away again“. He avoided looking at Thomas when he mournfully admitted: „I not know names and words for plants“
„That shouldn’t be a problem. I have a friend that studies Biology. I could ask them for a book or help you pick one up from the library“, Thomas offered after thinking about it for a moment.
„You do that?“ Amir asked in surprise.
„Sure. If you’re less fearful for your human life, you’ll be less afraid of your wolf life and the change will be easier“, Thomas explained calmly.
Amir smiled and then just hugged Thomas tightly: „Thank you much.“
[/Edit]
On the full moon day Thomas went to the bus station to pick them up. As the buses had a horrible schedule at this time of the day on Sundays they had agreed to meet him on his hill. Together they then walked along the way he usually already ran. He didn’t want Amir to turn at the edge of the district and he could already feel the wolf stirring inside of the other, so he fastened his steps. Finally they made it to the field and he led them to the forest at its border. There he put down his bag and motioned for Amir to do the same. Under the watchful eyes of Yussuf they removed their clothes and put them neatly into their bags. Amir was shaking by now and covered himself with his hands. Thomas grabbed him by the shoulders, „Breath“, he ordered calmly and Yussuf translated similarly, just in case. It felt to Thomas like his own wolf wanted to react to Amirs. This was his territory and the other wolf was trespassing. ‚No he wasn’t‘, Thomas scolded himself, ‚I invited him‘ and the wolf calmed down a little. Without warning Amir couldn’t hold it back any longer and started to turn. Thomas stepped away and let him. Completely transformed Amir snarled at him and Thomas held out his hand. „Hudu'“, he tried in Arabic, but the wolf turned towards Yussuf instead. He could feel the bloodlust and instinct taking over, but before Amir could jump, Thomas tackled him to the ground, now in wolf form as well. The two of them rolled on the ground biting and clawing at each other; Yussuf seemingly forgotten. It was soon apparent that Thomas was the stronger of the two and Amir yelped into a submissive position. Thomas barked at him and he started running, Thomas following suit. They ran and they fought and greeted the moon to their hearts content.

Behind the Scenes

Basically the only thing that really happened here is the fact that we have an increase in refugees that also take the bus. Though, I never really talked to any of them (there was this girl I asked about her singing the other day, but that was basically the entire conversation) as I’m not really the kind of person to start a conversation, let alone have small talk, with strangers/people I don’t know – unless it’s at a concert when I’m by myself or really want to ask the other person something, for some reason…
Anyway, the other thing are of course the crows (careful: one of my very first posts). There is a at least one murder here somewhere that is quite loud and pretty creepy…especially when you just want to reach your bus (or go to work). Currently it’s seagulls by the way, so they take turns? I don’t know. I only know that ever since I watched Hitchcock’s The Birds I’m very suspicious of large amounts of them flying around… (Same on a smaller scale with mist, since reading Stephen King’s The Mist, as I haven’t seen the movie-versions yet…) Good thing we have so few birds and mist up here…[/sarcasm]
By the way do I think that „The Year of the Moon“ might be a good title for this thing.
What do you think?
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this story as well.
Stay tuned for part five: Water Moon! 😉
PoiSonPaiNter

Snow Moon

And part three of the Neubrandenwolf-Tale.
You can find all stories in proper order and some more information on this page: Neubrandenwolf.
Have fun with:

Snow Moon

He knew it had been a bad idea.
He knew something would go wrong when he would run in an unknown area.
It always did.
Just a few days after the moon, his friend linked him on a social media post of the guy who owned the garden he had changed in. Of course he had found a paw print and was now sharing it with the world.
It wasn’t helping that his friends added: „Just around the corner from where we’ve been! Imagine if we would’ve seen the wolf!“
He did imagine it, he never liked when that happened. It wouldn’t have been the first time someone saw him – and certainly not the last.
Even after ten years of living with it he still felt like a stupid child whenever something like this occurred.
This full moon he wouldn’t be so reckless and he wouldn’t be in town either, as it fortunately was on a weekend.
The memories of his turning always haunted him when he screwed up. It showed him what might happen if he wasn’t careful. But where he was going he didn’t need to be that careful, he was save there and no one would notice a wolf running through the snow or care much about his paw prints afterwards. While he was driving towards his destination, however, his attack was all he could think about.
His girlfriend had just broken up with him and his best friend had dragged him out of country on a trip to „celebrate“ his new-found freedom. All the drinking hadn’t helped his troubled heart and so he had decided to go for a run in the middle of the night to clear at least his head. The air had been warm around him and the full moon had shone brightly in the clear sky. His feet had led him to a small forest at the outskirts of town and he had run along the path leading through it when suddenly he had heard something behind him. At first he had thought it was just another jogger that couldn’t sleep either, but the breathing and patter of feet reminded him more of an animal on the hunt. Sweat had run down his face and he had contemplated for a moment whether he should take a peek before his curiosity got the better of him. Looking back he had seen a large dog – or wolf as he now knew – standing there and starring at him. His heart had jumped and he had come to a halt, locking eyes with the beast. It had barred its teeth and snarled at him. Knowing you shouldn’t flee and actually not fleeing are two entirely different things and before he could have stopped himself his body had turned back around and just ran as fast as he could.
The wolf had been close on his heels, its growls barely audible over his own racing heart. Briefly he had thought about turning off the path, but he hadn’t dared to do it. He just ran and ran.
Still the wolf soon had caught up with him and he had felt something heavy hitting his back. He had lost his balance and had fallen face first onto the ground. There had been a sharp pain as the beast had sunken its teeth into his arm. A scream had left his throat as it had pulled him around. He had tried hitting it with his free arm, but to no effect. Then he had felt something hard below his back and had remembered the flashlight he had brought just in case. As the wolf was still pulling at his arm he had simply grabbed the flashlight and hit the wolf over the head several times. Finally it had let him go. They had stared at each other for a few frantic heartbeats; then the wolf had shaken its head and had just run off. He had shivered and panted and when he had been certain the beast wouldn’t return he had gotten up and stumbled back.

After nearly an hour of driving he finally reached the old house that was right at the edge of a forest. He parked his car and took out the backpack from his trunk before he rang the doorbell. The could hear the sound echoing through the large house, followed by the swishing of slippers on tiles, before a short, roundish woman opened the door, a surprised look on her face.
„Tommy!“ She exclaimed, a grin spreading.
„Hi Mum“, he replied and was pulled into a bear hug.
„Come in, come in“, she urged him and stepped aside.
He stomped away the remaining snow on his shoes and patted his clothes free from what little had landed on him on the way from the car to the house and stepped inside. Opening his jacket his mother soon grabbed it to hang it on a free hook while he got rid of his shoes and put them on the low shoe rack. When he got up his slippers already stood there waiting for him on the floor. A smile crept onto his face as he turned his attention back to his mother.
„Your father is in the living room, I’ll get you a tea; you must be freezing“, she told him and hurried off towards the kitchen.
„Thanks Mum.“ He wasn’t cold, not even remotely, but he still appreciated the gesture.
Bracing himself, he entered the living room; his father wouldn’t be too thrilled about his visit.
„You’ve been careless“, he greeted him solemnly and Thomas lowered his head; he knew he had been.
His father lifted up a newspaper that laid beside him on a table and read the headline: „Wolf in town? Paw prints found in local allotment garden“ before looking straight at him, „Seeing as you came here this full moon, it wasn’t just any wolf, was it?“
Thomas sat down on the couch, his head still lowered, kneading his hands. „No, it wasn’t“, he admitted nearly whispering.
„How many times do we have to tell you to be more careful, Thomas? It’s been ten years and you still act like it only happened last month!“ His father scolded him, slamming the paper back onto the table.
„Don’t you think I know that? Don’t you think I prepared?! I can’t change the weather!“ Thomas now snapped back, the moon already affecting his mood, at this accusation.
His father was right of course, he had raced his mind through all the possible outcomes, but it only came down to the mud that had captured his print.
„Enough! Both of you!“ His mother intervened and sat down beside him. „Tell us what happened, Tommy, we only know the news side of the story“, she encouraged and took his hand.
He squeezed it slightly and nodded. „Katrin had invited me to her birthday party and it was on the day of the moon“, he started.
„And that wasn’t reason enough for you to decline?“ His father interrupted.
„Of course, but she kept asking me about it. I hadn’t seen her and our friends for months, so I prepared. I looked at maps, I walked the area, but then the snow melted and one of the mud puddles caught my print“, Thomas explained, still angry at himself, angry at the weather and angry at his father for simply blaming him.
„Was it a good night at least?“ His mother changed the topic.
„Yeah, it was fun“, he answered with a genuine smile.
„Your tea should be ready“, she then said, smiling herself and patted his thigh before getting up.
They sat in silence until his mother returned, but it wasn’t an awkward one, it was more like they didn’t want her to miss anything of the conversation.
When she did she asked him about the party, his work and what had happened since they last talked and he happily obliged by telling her everything he deemed interesting. He simply loved being home.
The next day he helped his father shovelling the snow in the yard and from the roof and with other tasks while his mother prepared his favourite goulash and a meaty dish for the evening.
When the time had come he hugged his mother and received a pat on the back and a „be careful“ from his father. They stood with him on the back terrace that looked onto a meadow that lead to the part of the forest that belonged to them. He removed his clothes and put them on a bench, his mother would fold them later, she always did, and then shifted with a jump into the snow. For a moment he looked back at his parents, his mother was waving at him, a smile on her face, while his father merely nodded and had his arm around her. Yelping at them he then greeted the moon before he rolled around in the fluffy snow and ran off into the forest.

Behind the Scenes

Pretty much the only thing that was real this time, was the fact that it had snowed again and that it’s not unusual to drive long distances to get home…
And the fact that we occasionally have wolf sightings in Meck-Pomm thanks to the packs we have in the Lübtheener Heide and other regions.
With the upcoming chapters this will be even less based on stuff like that and more on narration.
The question is though:

Should I wait for the next full moons to publish each chapter or just publish them as soon as I have them done?

What do you think?
Well, I hope you enjoyed this story as well.
Stay tuned for part three: Crow Moon! 😉
PoiSonPaiNter

Wolf Moon

Well, I decided to continue the story of Winter Moon. Not just with this sequel, but a third part is already drafted as well. If I manage to do it, you will get a continuation every month close to the next full moon. The whole thing will be put below the title „Neubrandenwolf“, because let’s face it: The stuff that happens to the guy takes place in Neubrandenburg, even if I don’t say it. 😀
Anyway, I wanted to publish this post already last week, but I got sidetracked by watching Zoo. Though, as it turned out that was a good thing. For the third part I checked out the moon-names for title purposes and discovered that the full moon in January was called the Wolf Moon. Of course I had to change the title for that. 😉
As that is out of the way, have fun with

Wolf Moon

The other day it had finally snowed. The first time this winter, even if it was already January. He loved the snow; he loved how it made the world look peaceful and pure, but he especially loved how it felt on his fur and below his paws when he ran during his special night. His only fear was that it would thaw before that. Walking his way up to the hill he lived on, he thought about his plans for that night. Two days ago he had had a phone call with a friend that would complicate things.
„Hey, you’re the only one left, who hasn’t told me whether they come to my birthday party or not“, his friend had greeted him.
„Oh, sorry, I forgot. When was it again?“ He had asked, clearly remembering it would be on the day of the full moon.
„Next Thursday“ his friend had confirmed.
„Ah, yeah, I don’t know. Friday is my day off – “ he had started, but had been interrupted by: „Oh, come on! It’s my birthday and everyone will be there! You have to get out once in a while, you know, right?“ His friend had, not for the first time, mocked his status as a recluse. „Besides, I know for fact that you’ve never been to the Brewhouse and always wanted to go there!“
He had sighed at that and given in: „Let me check my schedule and I’ll call you back tomorrow.“
„Promise?“
„Promise.“

He had struggled with himself. On the one hand did he want to go and hang out with his friends that he hadn’t seen for ages, the great food he had heard so much about was an additional bonus. On the other hand would this cause several other problems as he was unfamiliar with the area and his potential running grounds.
The evening after the call he had spent with a map of the area. Even if he only stayed a couple of hours he wouldn’t be able to make it back in time for his run, so he wouldn’t have a choice but to improvise.
After work the next day he had gone to the restaurant and taken out the map he had printed and followed the path he had marked to the allotment nearby. He made notes of the hedges, the arbours and sometimes of the smells. Even without the moon his senses were better than those of a normal human, so he easily noticed that not many people had been here recently. They probably just checked on their belongings in their gardens or fed the resident birds.
A path ran throughout the allotment, branching off every few meters into new ways leading to the entrances of several gardens lying beside each other. At some point he had strayed from the main path to the left, this way he passed the garden entrances, but also came closer to the brook that ran parallel to everything. At this edge of the allotment he had found an unlocked gate between the hedges that led to the brook. Carefully he opened it, already hearing the bubbling of the water. This was where he could start running. No one would see him if he kept close to the hedges.
But first he needed that hiding place.
He had gone through the row of gardens leading to the brook and checked them for signs of their owners and the accessibility of their entrances. As his boots left prints in the snow he had to be careful when he looked for a proper hiding place for his clothes, he didn’t want people to think that he was planning on robbing something. Finally he had come across one garden that seemed promising. Someone had recently been here, the footprints still led to the arbour, so if the snow stayed no one would notice a second pair. The gate was low enough to pass with a bit of effort and the arbours‘ terrace seemed like a good place to hide his backpack. He was certain this should work; he just hoped the owners wouldn’t be here when the time came, that would be more than awkward. After he had made a note on his map he had started a timer on his phone to see how long it would take him to get here. When he had reached the restaurant again he was satisfied with the results and took his bus home. After dinner he then had called his friend to tell them that he’d come, but only for a few hours.
The days leading up to the birthday party he went through his plan time and again to see if it’d really work. When the day came he felt prepared enough, yet still terrified, but that was always the case if he had to change in an unknown environment; he liked his routines. He had a little time to get home from work before driving back down for the celebration. In his flat he changed into comfortable clothes that weren’t too thick to stuff into his backpack – as his usual bag would be too suspicious – alongside his supplies; something he had tried several times. With a last check he went to catch his bus.
Entering the restaurant, he was met by the delicious smell of different kinds of meat coming from the kitchen; he was definitely looking forward to the meal. His friend had invited quite a few people, fifteen if he counted correctly, some of which he knew, others he had never met before, neither of them knowing the truth about him. The only available seat was beside one of his friends‘ single lady friends, which was just a simple hint at the fact that he had been single for all the years they had known each other. A few of them – including him – decided to take the special plate consisting of a plate full of different kinds of meats and several side dishes like potato-variations and red cabbage. After some small talk and catching up, the food finally arrived and smelled even more delicious now that it stood directly before him. Luckily for him this was a restaurant where using your hands was encouraged, so he didn’t feel bad about grabbing a ham hock and sinking his teeth into it. It tasted as delicious as it smelled and it was hard to control his hunger and chew normally instead of just gulping it down. Still, he took little breaks between his refills so he could control himself better and it wouldn’t be too obvious that he ate far more than his share. He didn’t know the hunting grounds here, so he made sure to be sated enough to not attack anything – or anyone – out of hunger.
After the meal was finished and the few leftovers packaged, he wanted to leave, but his friend made him stay for the hand washing ritual. A bowl of soapy water was brought to them by one of the staff dressed as a medieval maidservant and she declared that the women would wash and dry the hands of the men. Of course woman sitting beside him was the one drying his hands. She coyly smiled at him the way she had done all evening. On days like these he never knew if this was real attraction or if it was the wolf that subconsciously made them swoon. It didn’t matter either way. He thanked her politely and stood up to say his good byes.
As he got out, his backpack loosely hanging over his shoulder, a few smokers already stood at the bottom of the entrance stairs. Their smoke interfered with his fine nose, so he quickly made his way past them, bidding his farewell. The property was surrounded by a stone wall with a few bars as fence here and there and a large gate that opened the way onto the street or onto the parking lot, depending on whether you were leaving or entering. Out of the gates he took a last look back and saw the others still standing there and with a forced smile he waved once again and turned left, as if he wanted to take the bus. Out of their field of vision he crossed the street and turned right instead to get to his actual destination. A little behind the gate he crossed the street again and with swift steps made his way to the hiding place.
He considered himself lucky that no one was around or had been here recently, but the snow had mostly thawed by now and he feared he might leave footprints in the mud. Still, he didn’t have a choice, so he crossed the low gate, went down the path to the arbour and stepped onto its open terrace. Alert he looked at his surroundings while he undressed himself and stashed everything in his backpack, his papers and remaining money at the bottom. He put the bag underneath the frame of a canopy swing and turned to leave. At the entrance of the terrace he stood for a moment looking up at the pale beauty above that was hiding behind tall trees and snow clouds. She looked magnificent. Taking in the cold air his body started to shift and soon he made his way through the garden. He tried to leave as few prints as possible through balancing on the edge of the cement plates that were vertically put into the ground as path borders; he still slipped a few times.
He followed the way he had studied to the brook and further down to a side arm of the local river and soon found himself on a still snowy field, as the ground here was too cold to let it thaw. Yelping joyfully he ran a few paces through it, rolled around in it and threw it into the air with his muzzle. Enjoying himself he howled his greeting to the moon and set off to fully enjoy his snowy run.

Behind the Scenes

As I did last time, a little overview of what is based on real things/events:

  • There is a restaurant at the edge of town called the Wallensteinkeller (Wallenstein-cellar) or commonly called „Brauhaus“ (brewhouse) where the only cutlery you get is a sharp knife. For minimum two people you can order the Wallensteinplatte (Wallenstein-plate) where you can get the stuff described above. It’s delicious. Also the staff does dress up as Magd (maidservant) and Knecht (servant), the foods have funny descriptions (black juice of the sugar beet would be coke) and the hand washing ritual really happens like that.
  • We were there for my Birthday celebration, but the moon-behind-the-threes thing happened a week earlier when we went there to order a special meal for Breagit.
  • This and me looking at a town map while waiting for my bus, I decided to write this story and let the protagonist run past the Brauhaus into the described Gartenanlage (allotment) onto the Torffeld (turf field) behind it.
  • I know a family that have their garden there and they brought me to the brook once, but the garden itself is kind of a mix between theirs and our garden, I’m pretty sure their terrace has a door, while ours is accessible.

Well, I hope you enjoyed this story as well.
Stay tuned for part three: Snow Moon! 😉
PoiSonPaiNter

Winter Moon

Well, let’s start this year with a new story that I came up with during the last weeks of December.
Some of the stuff described in it did actually happen, others not so much. I’ll let you know what is what afterwards. 😉
I quite like the idea and the story, even if I’m pretty sure I messed up some of the tenses, but read for yourself:

Winter Moon

Since the early morning he had sat at his computer at work. He had wanted to go home more than an hour ago, but his current task just kept throwing him in circles and needed to be finished before he finally had his day off. Everything inside of him was itching and wanting to leave. It was getting difficult to concentrate, but he had to.
In the corner of his eye he caught a glimmer of light and he put it aside as just another car driving down the busy road beside his workplace. But unlike a car’s, this light didn’t cease. Curious what it was, he looked up from his screen and out of the window. Staring back at him was the brightly glowing full moon. ‚Nearly full‘, he corrected in his mind and studied it for a moment, especially the craters that reminded him of a face – the man in the moon, as he was colloquially called.
‚Always a man‘, he snickered to himself.
A thing like that should be referred to as a woman. They were the fascinating, alluring and mysterious one of the genders. Men rarely had such grace. He moved his head from one side to the other and the moon seemed to follow him, the glass adding several paler reflections on either side of the glowing orb whichever way he turned. It was stunning and beautiful and he just wanted to go outside and watch it until it would sink again. But he couldn’t.
Fiercely he shook his head. First he had to finish his task then he could indulge the moon in all its glory.
„Just one more day“, he had told himself and returned to work the next morning.
Last night when he had sat on his balcony, a steaming tea in hand, looking up at the bright and glowing moon his mind had drifted to his task and he had seen the solution to his problem clearly before him, now all he needed to do was implement it. He would do that today and then be off into his much needed day off. Even with little sleep he had been here early and with all the extra hours he had put in to finish this, no one would complain if he left a little earlier.
But his plans were thwarted again, this time by his boss. Without much notice beforehand he had scheduled an important meeting right when he was about to leave but couldn’t as his opinion was needed. The meeting dragged on and on and he became more restless by the minute. He wanted to leave, he needed to. Impatiently tapping his foot he could see the world outside the window grow dark. The moon was rising, he knew.
Finally his boss dismissed them and he all but ran into their office, grabbing his things and throwing them in his sling bag.
„You’re in quite a hurry“, one of his colleagues stated mockingly.
„I’m late for my day off“, he only answered with a forced smile. ‘Far too late‘, he added in his mind.
With a short goodbye he finally left.
„I should have taken my bike“, he grumbled impatiently. Pacing like a caged animal he waited for the bus that would take him to his home, so he could start his vacation.
The cars kept rushing past him on the three-lane street and finally he could see the glowing lights of his bus approaching in the distance.
When he enters the bus he is met by the typical stench of Christmas time. The Christmas Market was at its height and the people were streaming to it, even in the middle of the week. He could smell the spiced wine and the rum, the roasted almonds and sweats and most of all the sweat from wearing too many layers on a not that could evening. Making his way through the slightly drunk and well fed people to the back of the bus he puts on his music to tune out the world. Fittingly the shuffle he has put on gives him Full Moon by Sonata Arctica and he decides to let it play in a loop. Through the mirroring windows he sees it, looming high in the sky.
Soon‘, he thinks leaning his head against the cold window, watching the moon whenever it was visible.
The bus drives up the hill his home was built on. When he arrives at his stop he steps out and takes a deep breath of the fresher air. The music is still humming in his ears but he mostly ignores it. The tall buildings block his view of the moon, but he knows it is there. He makes his way to his small flat, choosing to take the back entrance for a change. A pale light streams through the gap between the buildings and illuminates the grass and the monkey bars on the meadow.
He grins.
The moon was already greeting him.
Hurrying into his flat he puts away his work bag and changes into comfortable pants and a wide shirt after washing the dirt from the day off of his body. He then packs a small bag with a bottle of water, a towel and some disinfectant. While he is preparing the microwave heats some leftovers and the soft ping interrupts his packing. Carefully he takes out the food, goulash, his favourite, and makes himself comfortable at his dinner table. Slowly eating his meal he goes through his packing list once again and decides that he has everything he needs.
After he is done, he puts the plate and the cutlery into the dishwasher and grabs his bag. Putting on some light shoes he takes his spare set of keys, only containing the ones getting him into his flat, and leaves.
The winter air is cold, but that doesn’t bother him as he sets out for the outskirts of his district. He sometimes curses himself for living in the city, but his job didn’t allow for something farther out; the commute would be too long. But he still considered himself lucky that he got to live close to the large fields and far stretched forests that lay just outside of the town.
It doesn’t take him long to reach the sports field belonging to the nearby schools and swiftly jumps over the waist high fence. In a dark corner behind the trainers‘ office he stashes away his bag after putting his clothes in there as well. His body shivers and shakes and a low growl escapes his throat as his body shifts. Once more he shakes himself before he runs off towards the fence, leaping over it in one swift move. Running through the silent night he feels the wind in his fur. He doesn’t fear to be seen; he knows how to stay invisible; he knew the way.
Only a little further and he would be on the fields where he could finally howl at the moon.
Call out to the pale and glowing beauty of this winter moon.

Behind the Scenes

So, what do you think? Good? Bad? Interesting? Worthy to be continued?
Anyway, quick overview of what really happened:

  • I was at my computer at work when I saw the moon through the window. It was pretty cool to look at with all those reflections – I really hope I described that well enough – and right beside our office building is a quite busy road.
  • As the renovation now moved to the main entrance I had to use the back entrance and saw the moon light the way I described it.
  • I have a balcony and a microwave, though I probably didn’t use either on that day ( I live far too low to see the moon properly, but it sometimes does find its way between the slits of my shutters). 😀
  • I live on a hill and take the bus to get there – I also have a bike, but it’s collecting dust in my basement – starting from a stop beside the three-lane „Ring“ (circle) surrounding the town centre.
  • I watched the moon appear and disappear between the buildings while listening to Sonata Arctica’s Full Moon in a loop on the bus ride – and used the song as thought-focus while writing and editing.
  • The story was thought up and written during the time of our Christmas Market (the bus stop is directly beside it).
  • There is a school sports field not too far away from where I live and the outskirts with the fields and forest aren’t that far away either – you occasionally can see deer or foxes crossing the street or standing beside it.
  • I like goulash, but it’s not my favourite food and I have a dinner table that I rarely use and a small flat. 😀

And that’s it, everything else is entirely made up, I guess. 😉
I really like watching the full moon and pretty much every time I see one while I’m driving I think about werwolves and how inconvenient it would be to turn into one while sitting in a car – or at work in the stories case. Good thing I’m not one of them. 😀
Anyway, hoped you liked the story.
Happy Birthday to me
PoiSonPaiNter