Monthly Archives: February 2014

WriteTheWhite-Activity: Sir Gregor

When I skimmed through the WordPress Reader not long ago I discovered the WriteTheWhite-Blog and I have to say that I have read far too little of what is posted on there. But when she published a post called Are You Going to Read This Post? – Conflict I was naturally inclined to do just that in a „Don’t push the big red button“- or „Don’t think of a blue elephant“-kind of way (the latter is by the way the translated title of a book about thought processes).
And it proved to be an interesting read about why we include conflict in a story and a little activity that I’d like to cover in this post. Apart from it being an interesting topic (a Knight with issues) did I spent so much time recently to watch, read, think and write about the BBC Series Merlin that the idea of writing/thinking about a Knight just clicked with me.

But let’s have a look at the activity:

> – Gregor is a character that is very hard headed, but kind. He is very rash, but brave. He’s a knight, but one of the hardest things for him to do is ask for help-he just won’t do it. Think about some things that could happen to Sir Gregor in order to loosen him up to the idea of accepting help? Here’s a hint: Think about what pride is.

My first thought, when I read this activity was that I would have never thought of this behaviour because of pride. I’m not sure if this is due to my own disability to ask others on occasion, but I read self-consciousness into those few sentences. Of course pride is also a huge factor in inquiring things from other people, but also the view you have on yourself.
With doubt in your own abilities come many problems and asking a simple question becomes the most complicated thing in the world.
You do not wish to bother anyone with your questions, because on the one hand you think what you ask is stupid and you should know the answer already. On the other hand you think that the people you ask have way more important things to do than answer your (stupid) questions or lend you a hand.
Of course Knights are usually not known for being insecure, but it could happen, if regardless of it they are still capable and acknowledged fighters…
In conclusion this activity can be looked at from two different angles:

  1. Sir Gregor – The Proud Knight
  2. Sir Gregor – The Insecure Knight

I guess I’ll have a go at both…
Though regardless of the angle something quite drastic would need to happen for them to change their attitude towards asking for help. Because simply put: Overcoming something like that is not easy and will take a lot of time.

The Proud Knight

As the hint went into the direction of pride I will start with this one.
For a Knight to overcome his pride he has to learn humiliation and the only way I can currently think of how that could happen would to throw him into a situation where he had to rely on others to do something he can’t do.
Like for example an outpost duty in a farming village, where he is granted land. This land however is large enough that it could be used for farming, so he would not need to buy everything he needed from the villagers or in the market place.
As a proud and wealthy Knight he could just hire people and wouldn’t need to care about it. But what if he had a tight budget and wouldn’t be able to hire servants and buy fresh nutrients regularly and would need to grow them for himself?
So his hard-headedness and rash nature would cause him to start farming his land when he is not on duty or is not needed otherwise. But being a noble-born Knight he has no idea what he is actually doing. The villagers see his struggle, but as his station is way above theirs they do not dare to speak out, give him tips or offer help.
But what if one villager would be brave enough to walk up to the Knight and show him how he has to do something to get it right?
It would change the Knight.
Of course at first he’d be furious. A villager showing him, the proud Knight, how to do something! How dare he! But then – thanks to his kindness and hopefully existing reasoning skills – he would realize that the villagers advise was useful and helped him to actually grow something on his fields. Even slower and with more freely offered advise from the villager the Knight would then become used to the villagers presence and might even find himself conversing with him. And from there it wont take long for him to turn the conversations into a direction where he includes small questions in everyday conversation, so the other wouldn’t notice and he would get his answers. Much later when he is used to the villager and their conversations are frequent and long, he might even walk up to him and directly ask him how to do something. Maybe even with a joke that the proud Knight does not know a thing about farming.
Or when the villager is busy with his own grains the proud Knight might become a tiny bit insecure about his inquiries, but that’ll be covered later. 😉
An alternative to this would be an injured Knight that wouldn’t let a healer help him.
‚Tis but a Scratch‘ as the Black Knight from Monty Python and the Holy Grail (which is by the way called „The Knights of the Coconut„/„Die Ritter der Kokosnuß“ in German) so nicely put it when he lost his first arm.
A proud and stubborn Knight would not want to be healed, he would walk with the wound until he bled to death or a healer forced himself unto him. Either way he would be pretty screwed if his pride overtook his sense of survival. A proud Knight that is also smart might acknowledge the fact that he indeed needed some help to be useful again and grateful when it was granted.
And I am certain there are way more variations of this.

The Insecure Knight

This Knight is a different shoe altogether. He might not even think he deserves his title in the first place. A lot of time and persuasion would be necessary for him to form enough courage to ask, but as with the other Knight: If someone walked up to him when he struggled with a task and offered help and/or advise, he would slowly open up to that person, his kindness maybe playing largely into this.
There always are certain people you feel more comfortable asking, those people mostly don’t judge your questions and are more interested in simply answering them. People like this are the ones the Insecure Knight will confine in and turn towards if he needs advice.
Other people that barely answer the Knight’s questions and make him wait and feel like he is getting in their way will slow the trust process immensely. In his hard-headed and rash mind he will start thinking that the helpful Knights are just too kind to tell him off and will start asking them less. Making it worse to ask other Knights as well.
This Knight doesn’t have it as easy as the other one.
Here the described traits will backfire and if more unhelpful Knights cross his path than helpful ones, he will never truly come around with asking others for help and just work in his little bubble trying to find as many answers as possible before turning to someone else.
Furthermore a Knight like this – and the other one as well I suppose – would not just try to do everything on his own, but overwork himself in the process and that would kind of be the worst outcome of the whole situation.

The Important Lesson

Even though you – as the Knight – are the one to make the final step in asking someone, be it through overcoming your pride or your anxieties, it also greatly depends on the people that offer or decline their help.
But regardless of that one has to understand that one can not know or do everything and that there are moments where we just need the help – be it in form of knowledge or doings – of another person.
PoiSonPaiNter
P.S. Sorry for not actually using the name in the descriptions of the Knights…

Re-Wri-Day: Hello World

Inspired by EdMooneyPhotography’s Re-Work-Wednesday and based on the fact that my writing style for this Blog has changed over the past two years I kind of created my own version of this.
But why the strange name and what does it mean?
I’m awful when it comes to puns and I couldn’t help myself but to turn re-write and Friday into one strange word: Re-Wri-Day. Sorry…
But in conclusion: These posts are supposed to be always published on a Friday, but not necessarily on every Friday that comes from now on…just the Fridays when I feel like editing an old post…
And what am I doing with this?
I am taking my old posts from the beginnings of writing this Blog and read them again to see what things I can change or add. They wont necessarily be actually re-written, but some changes will be made.
In the Re-Wri-Day post I’ll also give you a couple of thoughts on why I had chosen the topic and stuff you might be interested in.
So, let’s start with the very first post: Hello World
As being new to Blogging I just thought about how I wanted to go about writing my first post.
And as a programmer (I just noticed that I kind of never mentioned that openly before…ups…) I couldn’t have done it any differently then by using the Hello World-Java Code.
Unfortunately WordPress doesn’t really like formatting code-fragments properly, so I am stuck with a weird version of it. (If anyone knows how to make spaces and tabs in such a display, let me know.)
The things I added in the post include mentioning of this Blog being written in my second language and the things that were first on this page being my writings. I thought those things should be cleared up.
As it goes by the same title I also had a look at the static start page and changed a couple of phrasings. I guess what I put there is more or less enough for a passerby to know what this Blog can offer. Guess I should have a look at the About page at some point as well…it is rather…cryptic…
And that’s about it for this post as well and it concludes a rare week of three updates.
I don’t think that will happen that often again.
I don’t want to spoil you. 😉
I’m curious how this whole re-writing will work out and what changes I’ll make to the posts I have…maybe I’ll even find a post or two that does not need to be „re-written“…but I doubt that. 😀
PoiSonPaiNter

Two Years…

Today it’s been two years since I announced my „Hello World“ on this Blog.
And as always: I nearly forgot about this in the first place…
I knew it was sometime towards the end of February and today I just remembered that I wanted to look it up.
According to the „Trophy“ I got last year from WordPress the anniversary is on the 21st, but the first post was published today, so that is the proper day…and I just got this years trophy to prove my point.
Anyway.
Two years aren’t really a big milestone to pass (not like the ones I mentioned in this post), but if you are as easily sidetracked as me, than it is something to accomplish…
I mean, I started this Blog to write stuff down and have a side to collect all my writings and in these two years a lot of things have happened that could have caused me to stop working on this.
You can see that by the amount of stuff I have posted within this two years, as I mentioned before: I merely managed to write about 50 posts in two years…
Apart from the fact that I need to be in a writing mood, I think the biggest problem is, that I don’t like short posts. They just feel weird. If I really have a topic I can easily fill about a thousand words, but if I just have a short thing to say and the post is shorter than that, it is kind of strange. Though I don’t think this post will be that long either…

But what have I accomplished in these two years and what do I plan to do now?

Hmm…I’m not sure about either…
I kind of finished studying (though I haven’t gotten my final mark yet)…
I kind of started to write a bit more regularly (at least once a week)…
I kind of visited a few places and managed to write about or still have to write about it…
The how, in the schedule and stuff however still is a mystery to me…
But I’ll think up something…I guess…
And now I’m already at a loss of what else to write about concerning this anniversary…
Guess I’ll just end with a bit more than four hundred words for a change and hope I will continue with this Blog a bit longer, as it is a nice companion down the road of life.
See you around
PoiSonPaiNter

On the Road: Through a bit of Germany 2013

Unlike 2012, where I wanted to visit a few people, last years journey through Germany was highly influenced by the festivals I attended.
It was long since decided that DarkFairy and I would be attending Wacken again and when Black Kat and Schnitzel proposed the idea of attending the M’era Luna as well I had to consider this carefully. As I mentioned before, Wacken always takes place in the first week of August, whereas the M’era is sometimes during the same weekend, other times during the one before or after that. This year it was the weekend after Wacken. Attending both festivals would mean I had to drive to the other side of Germany twice in a short amount of time. To avoid that I thought up a couple of possibilities to make it only one trip. Fortunately I again found people who could offer me a place to stay for a night or two and I could participate in both festivals.

Japan in Berlin and a surprise concert

The journey again started in Berlin (B) on the 26th of July where I would stay at Liathano’s place again. On my way to her I  picked up a member of the Black Pack (the group Kat, Schnitzel & Co belong to) that also wanted to get to Berlin and we spent the morning in my overheated car – it’s air conditioner is kind of non-existent. With delay, as I miscalculated the time – again – we made it to Germany’s capital without melting and I set her off at her intended destination before reaching mine.
For the evening Liathano had decided to take me to a shop called „Neo Tokyo„, where you could buy tons of Manga, Anime and gimmicks surrounding these things. I was a little bit disappointed at the offerings and Liathano seconded me on that, but said that it was probably just business running slow. It is after all a quite specialized shop and being in the middle of Berlin might not even help with that. After I had decided to only take a few volumes of different series‘ I’m reading we went on to find some food. Not far from the shop is the cáfe  „Mamecha“ where you could buy and eat a variety of Japanese food, alongside a vast amount of different drinks. Surely I didn’t miss out on that opportunity and Liathano had a lot of fun watching me try it.

Yummy and interesting food...

Yummy and interesting food…


If your interested I started with a Miso Soup that reminded me of, well, Sauerkraut. I also got a Bento box that included rice, extremely sweet omelette that had been roasted with horseradish (interesting how in German it is called „Meerrettich“ (Sea-radish) and in English it is horseradish XD), weirdly sweet spinach with sesame, Umeboshi (red, salty and sour cucumber-things) and Hijiki algae with carrot bits. And yes I eyed a couple of things in suspicion before I ate them…
We also discovered that you should be careful of mixing the (vanilla) ice and the soda of a Melon Crème Soda, it creates evil foam, but is still refreshing and tasty. (Kat and I also discovered a similar effect with a drink of Cider, Pils and currant liquor when we were in the pub for my birthday last month, but Kat was less lucky than me and her drink spilled quite a bit before it stopped.)
For the evening I met up wit Lil‘ Kat and a couple of her friends as we had planned to go to the „Wikingerbar“ (Viking bar) to catch up. But as it was full we decided to go to the „Pech & Schwefel“ (Pitch and Brimstone) around the corner instead. Which turned out to be a good decision. With a tankard of (in my case Beltane) Mead (sweet woodruff and meadowsweet)  and beer for the others we shared our stories and enjoyed the Hungarian Laterns, the live band that played that night. It was a nice surprise, but kept us from talking much more and as I was to depart early the next day I couldn’t stay that long either. Catching my (last) bus I returned to Liathano’s place.

Pen & Paper

Early in the morning I bid my goodbye to her and went on to meet up with my passengers for the route to Kassel (C). As I had a lot of stuff in my trunk for the festivals it wasn’t that easy to include other peoples luggage, luckily I am rather talented at real life Tetris. 😀 When we arrived in Kassel I managed to drop them off one of them right in time for her to catch a train to her place.
After both of them were gone I made my way to Nazgul, who was already eagerly awaiting me. Beforehand he had asked his DSA (Das Schwarze AugeThe Dark Eye) group if I could join them for their adventure that evening and they agreed. That time they however played a round for Earthdawn, so I couldn’t use the character I had created back in 2009 when I played with Fairy and her friends on our first meeting. In preparation of this I had to consider what I wanted to play and Nazgul provided me with several files of information the different races and professions.

My doodle of V'ashtay

My doodle of V’ashtay


In the end I decided to play a female Nethermancer T’Skrang (magically apt reptile person) by the name of V’ashtay (Those who noticed my several Doctor Who posts might discover the inspiration of this name in these two: Vastra & Vashta Nerada). As Nazgul and his Dungeon Master (the one telling and supervising the story, if you are unfamiliar with the term) didn’t talk about it they both prepared character sheets for me, the DM thankfully filled them with the basic stuff.
The story we played was also quite interesting:

The group of heroes was investigating the appearance of several thick magic treats that could not be destroyed that easily, but could cause high damage if ingested with powerful magic. They had already put a lot of effort in their research and had a new lead that they wanted to follow. Just as they were about to get closer to a new lead their quarters were searched by an unknown party and all their notes were stolen, even from the vaults. Luckily the most important object, an old magic book that might include the spell that used the treats, was still in the possession of the groups Nethermancer. Provided with shelter and food my his fellow sorcerer he made it his task to fully translate the book, while the others investigated the break in. (Rough version of what happened)

As you can see above I also took my time while the other’s worked on their characters to doodle mine. Oh, and I exchanged the uncomfortable kitchen chair for one of the camping chairs I remembered having in my car…after several hours of sitting in the other I must add…
Apart from the playing we also had the traditional pizza and sweets appropriate for such an event.
We played until the early morning hours and when we left the air was filled with sheet lightning from a thunderstorm in the distance. It was quite a sight.
The people were quite nice and I even got a compliment from the DM for the way I played. I told him it was due to my writing and the role playing I had done for Warlords and other stories, but it was a nice thing to say. 🙂

Of Monsters and Grimms

On our way to the place we played at I saw an advertisement for an exhibit in the Ottoneum and that was where we spontaneously had planned to go. Even more spontaneous was, when we discovered that the „Expedition Grimm“ took place in a hall on the way to the museum.
It was quite interesting as it not just covered the life of the Brothers Grimm, but also their different work, including the first German dictionary and of course the Fairy Tales. They had several interaction-thingies and a stamp for each station of the exhibit. It was quite interesting and as it turned out I even won something from a card we handed in after we went through it (A book about the history of Christopher Columbus).
Afterwards we went to the other exhibition that was about „Monsters“ like Nessie, Big Foot and others, in short Cryptozoology. It was quite fun and we also got the chance to see an Axolotl. 🙂

axonessie

An Axolotl meets Nessie in the Ottoneum Kassel


Our way back lead us along the Fulda that provided some different sights to the city itself. Apart from the river we passed a strange sculpture side full of stone towers called „petrified conversion of sight“ (versteinerte Sichtverwandlung). No proper description what it was for though…

Preparations, preparations…

On Monday morning I then continued my way to DarkFairy close to Euskirchen (D, F), where we would make preparations for our trip to Wacken (E) on Wednesday. Her parents had allowed/offered us to take their car for the trip and with this we would not need to sleep in a tent and even be able to sleep on a mattress. For which we were quite grateful, considering the mud from the year before
But to manage to do that we had to prepare the car. We cut out cardboards that would fit into the car windows.
Well, at least that was the plan…
The pieces we ended up with were far from fitting at all and we decided that day that we should stick with writing and not dabble into crafting…
We are just not good at it… (read more about it here)
With shopping and other preparations the days were over far too soon and we didn’t even manage to do anything for our book Warlords.

DF-PP Entertainment


From the 31st of July until the 4th of August we were in Wacken, but that will be covered separately. When we returned on Sunday we were pretty exhausted and barely able to tell our tales to Fairy’s family. And we had a lot to tell, as we had talked a lot of rubbish over those few days (including Ponies with Horn, Spaghetti-fishs and random Pokémon battles). Until I departed we managed to set up a Forum that gives us the chance to properly continue to write our story the way we used to (More information here) and we also posted a couple of posts already. But on the 7th it was time for me to continue on my way.

How to befriend a cat and infect someone with Doctor Who

The next stop was at the outskirts of Köln (G) at IceWolf’s place. We went to spent the evening at the Rhine, to just relax and talk, watching the river flow – and the ducks watching us. It was quite a way from the parking lot to the riverside, but it was worth it, as it was quite a nice side to have a spontaneous picnic-thing. Except the ducks that crept me out, but I have a certain history with birds and am by now quite paranoid when I see several of them in close proximity to me…(I plan on covering that one day as well)

A fountain close to the Rhine-side

A fountain close to the Rhine-side


The Rhine-side

The Rhine-side

Returning from the river we stopped at a Domino’s to get dinner and I have to say their Cinnamon Bread and American Style Cookies are quite tasty…
While we ate our food I persuaded Ice’s cat with snacks I had brought with me to win over his favour, knowing I would share the sleeping room with him. And it indeed worked…he even came to examine me, a thing he usually doesn’t do with strangers…
When Ice and I tried to play a round of Munchkin he wasn’t too fond of the things occupying the ground and we soon switched to something different.And it was this evening that I (or rather Christopher Eccleston) turned Ice into a Whovian as our alternative was to watch „Rose„. 😀 (You’re welcome 😉 )

Relaxing Entertainment

For my next stop I had contacted two of my cousins that live in Düsseldorf (H). One of them could let me stay at her place, but we agreed to meet up at my aunt’s/her mother’s place first. During my stay there I didn’t actually do much, I rather took the time to take a breather for the upcoming festival. We had lunch with my aunt and uncle, teatime with her and my other aunt also living there and saw the family of my cousin’s son take off to their holidays.
It had been a while since I last saw either of them and they were quite surprised I visited in the first place, but it was nice to stop by and talk a bit.
When we returned to my cousin’s place at one time one of her neighbours had noticed something strange in the apartment next door. And as it turned out someone had broken in. Again. While the family was on vacation. So my cousin had to deal with the police and the neighbour on the phone, while I entertained her dog. I couldn’t really do much else anyway…
Regardless of just coming from a place with a cat (two actually including Fairy’s place) the dog kind of liked me right away. Showing her appreciation by peeing on floor in front of the chair I had chosen to sit at…XD…uhm…with the police and everything my cousin hadn’t managed to take her out on time. Other than that was she rather cuddly and wanted to play a lot…

Back in Black

On Friday it was then time for my last stop: Hildesheim (I), where the M’era Luna would take place. On my way there I had a passenger with little knowledge of the German language. This gave me the change to actually practise a little spoken English and earned me another compliment. According to him I sounded like I had spent some time in Britain and not just knew the stuff from school/studying and movies/series. I used those – in my opinion underdeveloped – skills to converse about all kind of stuff including music, festivals and the possibility if a speed camera had caught me or the guy in front of me (As I haven’t gotten a ticket, yet, I suppose it was the other one). When I dropped him off in Hannover I took a short break before I headed off to join the people from the Black Pack, that would attend the festival, at a motorway service area.
But that is a story for a different post.
This journey ended with us returning to Neubrandenburg (A, J) and me continuing the next day to spend my last vacation day with my parents. It’s always nice to get home after a journey…
Thank you to everyone that offered me a place to stay, it’s been fun again. 🙂
I’m not sure if I manage to journey like this in 2014, but most of the planning isn’t even done yet.
We’ll see what I come up with…
PoiSonPaiNter
Follow the whole route here:
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Crossing Over: Chapter 9

It has been nearly a year since I updated my Bleach and Naruto Crossover Fanfiction called Crossing Over and I kind of feel bad for it.

But as I have written in previous posts I had a lot going on.
Festivals and „traveling“ I still have to write about.
My Bachelor’s thesis.
And plain lack of motivation to write anything but an occasional Blog post about some random topic.

But now I finally managed to complete the half(?) done chapter I still had from last year and also publish it and you can find it on Fanfiction.net.

Last chapter an anonymous reviewer on Fanfiction.net asked me to not make the Naruto characters weak. Well, as I had planned to let Tenten win in a fight against Ikkaku from the get go, I think I made quite a decent job at that, or what do you think?
Besides that it was fun to put some more side characters into the spotlight. I’m not sure how much they will get from here on out, but maybe a little more. You might also want to see a part of it as Neji-memorial scene and of course I had to make the Ninja-turtle joke. 😉
Speaking of jokes: As I already used the same „joke“ in chapter one I might as well tell you where I got the inspiration for the, well let’s call it: gourd joke.
Quite a while ago I came across the Konoha Corner podcast for Naruto Shipuuden.
From what I’ve heard – which is not that much – it’s pretty fun. Especially their Manga–Recap’s. 🙂
Anyway, during the first few episodes they started the show with a certain introduction for their „Gothic Gaara“, where he and „Jiraya“ talked about the gourd ending in the former yelling „It’s a gourd damn it!“
Thinking about how I could change my original idea their discussion came to my mind and as you’ve seen in this and the first chapter I took that sentence into a different setting as I found it pretty hilarious and fitting.
Though looking through the meanings for „gourd“ the words I used could be seen as synonyms, at least „gourds“ are used for both things (Sake jar, vases).
Well, if you two ever read this: I hope you don’t mind my interpretation of your little discussion. =)

And let’s not to forget the Soundtrack:
Part I: Letzte Instanz – Von Anfang an
Part II: Schandmaul – Der Teufel
Part III: Powerwolf – Secrets of the Sacristy
Part IV: Avantasia – Spectres

And I guess: Sorry for the long wait, but I might be able to continue this story a bit more regularly from now on.

I currently feel like writing and I might finish some other stuff in the coming days as well – at least I kind of hope I can finish another story for Friday – even though I don’t really partake on any Valentine’s Day stuff, but the story at least would be befitting for it.

I also started another Multi-chapter Fic, but I will cover that separately.

What I did however discover with this chapter is, that Fanfiction.net doesn’t care about line spacing…
You can tell your document-file it should have a 1,5 spacing, but the site will ignore it.
But if you make a new paragraph (enter) instead of a line-break (shift+enter) it makes the document on the site look ridiculous.
If you then include the content on a page on e.g. WordPress you can look through it again to get rid of additional paragraphs (empty lines)…

Somehow Fanfiction.net likes to mess with my profile there as well…simply underlining almost everything…so annoying and I just can’t believe the unordered-list tag is the right HTML-tag that causes it…if I include it the list is formatted strangely (on the far left side instead of with a gap before the list-icon) and of course the underlining. Changing the list to not be a pre-programmed unordered-list makes it looks less strange, but not as I would like it to look…

Well, maybe I’ll find a proper solution one day.

Until then I have to bear with a strange looking profile and continue to explore already existing characters in a new setting. 😀
(I am by the planning on writing a post on Fanfiction’s in general … some day …)

PoiSonPaiNter

Markus Heitz: Kinder des Judas

It’s been several years since I first started reading Markus Heitz‚ „Kinder des Judas“ (KdJ – in English: Children of Judas). As it was published in 2007 I got it around that time as well and never really had the chance and the muse to finish it until now. Like last year I thought that over the Christmas days I at least had to try to finish one book, as I can’t remember what else I have read that year – again. When I first picked up the book, after I had chosen it, I tried to continue reading, but soon realized that I would have to start anew, as what I read a few pages before that was just gone.
But let’s start at the beginning.

What is it about?

KdJ is Heitz‘ first vampire-story, but not remotely romantic. The story is told through two different time lines: 18th century Serbia and current day (2007) Germany – Leipzig, to be precise.

The history part picks up the story of Scylla a young girl with a hunger for knowledge that loses her mother through the Turks. She is then raised by her (formerly unknown) father to follow him in his scientific studies and to become his successor. The more time she spends with him, the more she learns, but not just through their research. Her father is part of a hidden society of scientists that are calling themselves the Children of Judas and she soon finds out what exactly that means.

In Leipzig Theresia „Sia“ Sarkowitz is a caregiver for a hospital, who knows when death is about to visit her patients. But she is also a bouncer and combatant in illegal and nasty fighting matches, just to feel alive. When a young patient dies she decides to write down Scylla’s story. Soon her old live catches up to her. Her brother Marek forces her to remember who – and more importantly what – she really is and to return to where everything began. To the place where she was Scylla.

The reading experience

As I said I started the book back in 2007 or 8. I had read about a hundred pages and never really felt like continuing.
Before I decided to start from the beginning I read a couple of pages to get back into it. I soon found out that where Sia currently was, was a place where I nearly had been last year: The Moritzbastei in Leipzig. She was even at a concert of Das Ich, one of Germany’s oldest Gothic bands, that I actually have partly seen at last years Wave Gothik Treffen (Wave Gothic Meeting – the report for this will be added one day >_< ), in Leipzig. 😀 A thing that meant absolutely nothing to me all those years ago. It was just a location and just a band, no connection whatsoever and now I have memories of a guy with a clowns-hairdo in an industrial hall. 😀
But when I skipped more pages backwards I realized that it would be better to start from the get go again…as I couldn’t remember who certain people even were.

As I am not really a Dwarves fan, my first experience with Heitz (who is mainly known for his novels about Dwarves) were his novels Ritus and Sanctum, about the Werewolf of the Gévaudan and his version of what actually happened back then. Those two had the split storyline KdJ has, as well, so I knew what I was getting into.
Though from what I remember this was a bit different as it occasionally switched between the storyline within one chapter and had several, well, in-chapters. Let’s try again: The book is divided into four parts – called books: Mädchen (Girl), Aeterna, Entdeckungen (Discoveries) and Tod (Death). The chapter numbers continue throughout them. In each chapter there are notes for when and where something is happening, new notes show time jumps within the chapter. And occasionally that jump was into the other storyline.
This itself isn’t really confusing, though the point of view changes. Everything from the past is narrated, current events are told in Sia’s perspective. At one point she writes something and it is in first person as well. This is a bit odd, but you can still understand the different narrations quite well.

At some points I stumbled over spelling mistakes, but the book is from the first printing and things like that can always happen. What bothered me a little more was Heitz‘ way of describing things with too much details in some cases, but I’ll get to that later.

The characters

Sia herself isn’t really explored until later in the book when most of Scylla’s backstory was revealed. We have scenes with her that describe what she is doing, but you can’t really grasp why she would do that without completely knowing Scylla’s story. Of course the thought that she is Scylla and that she is a vampire (which they are by the way never called, as Heitz‘ preferably used the term „upir“ and variations thereupon) is always there while you read it, but not addressed until far down the storyline. She is not a character you would like, but somehow none of them are really likeable. Her actions are way more thought-through than Scylla’s and it’s a really nice contrast to the person she once was.

Because, well, most of what is told happens in Scylla’s childhood and young adult years, well up until her 70s… But still, Scylla was forced to grow up fast and had to live through quite some ordeals while growing up. Part of her stayed rather childish when it came to pursuing her goals. It was unfortunately not that much explored how she thought up certain plans, therefore some of her decisions don’t really make sense. At other points she even seems nymphomaniac, as her approach to gain power in man-ruled world is to sleep her way to wealth. Not really a kind of female representation one would like to read, but I suppose it might have been a necessary thing to do back then. Still don’t like it though. She had a brilliant mind (as she was raised to be a scientist) and had to restore to use her body instead….

And the only times she did fall in love didn’t end well…
Because everything boils down to the scientist society, The Cognatio, that has other things in mind with her (scientific) abilities. Members of that include Scylla’s father Karrol, her half-brother Marek and her occasional lover Lydia. Just like Scylla’s reasoning theirs is barely mentioned. Some of it is hinted at, some just not mentioned.

It is a pity, he could have done so much more with those three, but he settled for overprotective father, lovesick brother and shifty love-interest. And barely even mentioned other members of the circle. Thinking about it, Scylla/Sia and other side-characters could have gotten a better treatment as well.

There are no favourites or absolute dislikes in this, as simply everyone has reason’s to do what they do. Sometimes ridiculous or unexplained, yet still a reason…and, well, they are not portrayed enough to get some kind of connection.

General Opinion

If you don’t like explicit descriptions of fights – and I mean bloody and brutal fights – then none of his work is suitable for you. He also has a liability to describe sexual scenes with quite some detail. I don’t mind the blood, but the other stuff should be left a bit more to imagination in my opinion. Beside that, Scylla gets naked for a ridiculous amount of times, especially while fighting and that just bugs me.

Unlike the Werwolf-novels this one couldn’t really capture me, which might explain the break between reading. I don’t really know why, but between long and bloody descriptions of how someone was dissected or killed, the suspense didn’t really build up. You couldn’t guess what would happen next, but the moments where you hoped something wouldn’t happen where quite rare. Additional to that the characterization wasn’t the best either.

It was still interesting to read this different approach on vampires. Heitz created a variation of vampires based on Eastern folk tales, giving them names and abilities accordingly. He used people and places that actually had significance in our world in regards to our belief in these creatures. And as he writes well and fluently I can overlook most of the negative stuff above.
This book is different, not special, not a must-read, but different. A nice diversion to all the romanticisation of vampires these days.

Stuff I’d like to add

Even though this book seems closed, there are two sequels: Judassohn (Judasson) and Judastöchter (Judasdaughters). For the sake of completeness I have them as well, but I have to say, that I don’t really know what story they follow.
And there is a novel called Blutportale (Bloodportals) than somehow uses elements of both stories (Werwolfs and Vampires) and adds new stuff in a new setting. I’ll let you know what I find out when I managed to read all of them. 😉
And: None of them (including KdJ) are sold in English, sorry.
But I wouldn’t mind helping you out, if you were to try and read in in German. 🙂

PoiSonPaiNter

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