Date: 29 Mar 2014 19:02 Title: By the Dying Light...
Beautiful and haunting prose, expertly manipulated by the master. The repetition seemed to echo days of similar monotony for Ryaenn, interspersed with moments of sheer terror. She seems like one tough mo' fo' though, and I'd hate to be on her bad side...
Wonderful use of the challenge line - it almost felt like it became her mantra, the shred of humanity she clung to to keep her sane - well, as sane as anyone could be when living through a situation like that. Wonderful piece - not the topic so much but the style and the sense of determination to survive at all costs it portrayed, as well as make those responsible pay for their wanton acts of cruelty.
Thank you so much LBD. Really nice thoughts on the piece and the fact you liked the style and sense of determination. Ryaenn's story is quite haunting but inspiring too because of surviving it. I love your insights into the repetition of the prose. My great and many thanks for reading.
Date: 25 Mar 2014 16:44 Title: By the Dying Light...
A perfect balance of the light and the dark, with few words and clever use of reputation, you deliver a hard hitting and painfully believable short story.
Why thank you FalseBill. Kind words indeed.
Date: 25 Mar 2014 12:49 Title: By the Dying Light...
A chilling (if you will pardon the pun) glimpse into Cyste Ryaenne's history and psyche. Beautiful imagery, as much poetry as prose. You hinted of her tortured past in your Aegolius Harrier stories. Thanks for a more detailed glimpse behind the curtain - exceptional!
I always love and appreciate a comment from yourself TLR. And as nice a comment as that, especially so. Thank you greatly.
Date: 24 Mar 2014 23:01 Title: By the Dying Light...
Cyste Ryaenn has undeniably had a hard live and no time is that made more unmistakably clear as in this uncompromising and strangely poetic account of the horror she endured as a prisoner of war.
Thank you CeJay. Yes, Ryaenn has definitely had a hard time. Glad this piece helped to convey that without the need to detail it as in A Question of Survival.
Date: 24 Mar 2014 20:45 Title: By the Dying Light...
Wow! I loved this narrative. It makes me want to get to know Cyste even more. Andoria has such a unique culture, I've always wanted to read more about them after watching Enterprise.
Thank you RogueJawa. I too love Andoria and Andorians - and yes this was formed by seeing them in Enterprise. It took me a long time to write an Andorian strangely. But I'm very glad that I now get to explore my very own one. And I'm glad you liked reading about Cyste. There's plenty more of her story already here and there's more to come. Hope you check them out someday.
Date: 30 Aug 2013 09:33 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part Two -- Duels
Hell of a fight, that one. And it looks like Ryaenn did have another agenda other than entertain her crew with a good fight. The way she had advertised the event, I did think that there had to be more to this than met the eye. Quite shrewd of her. Maybe an interest in taking up martial arts, of any kind, would do this underachieving crew good. Not to mention the tactical value should they ever find themselves in a tough spot.
Date: 25 Aug 2013 18:16 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part Two -- Duels
Gage is a bit of a slimy character but I suppose Ryaenn does have a bit of a tendency to remind everyone around her of her past and the ordeal she has been through. That, in itself may be the most sure fire sign that she hasn't fully gotten over it. Then of course, this is not an experience one gets over easily, if ever.
And now comes the duel. The way Ryaenn has promoted this event amongst the crew, this better live up to the hype or the captain may end up making herself look like a fool. Something tells me that won't happen.
Date: 25 Aug 2013 03:44 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part Two -- Duels
Ameren clearly has some chauvinistic tendencies and is clearly not quite Starfleet material, considering his antics. I'm curious to find out if this is going to create any conflict between him and his captain down the line. He is clearly not endearing himself to many in this crew.
Date: 24 Aug 2013 14:04 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part Two -- Duels
Ah, T'Vala was a bit of a mystery to me before even though I did suspect that she was beginning to accept her new captain more than some of the others.
Now I do think she'll make a fine ally to Ryaenn. And who knows, maybe a bit of the captain will even rub off on her.
Date: 23 Aug 2013 17:50 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part One
There aren't many admiral who would ever win a popularity contest and even fewer Vulcan ones but Ston is really sitting at the top of the list of the most obtuse flag officers in the fleet. And his seemingly personal vendetta against Ryaenn is anything but logical.
Am already loving the idea that Ryaenn and the crew will have to face not one but multiple Cardassian liaison officers some of which will have their own, pervasive agendas. Let's see if they know what they're in for because the last thing a Cardassian would ever want to do is piss off the new captain of the AH.
Really enjoyed this story and looking forward to delving into the next one to see who will get booted out of an airlock first on this ship.
Date: 23 Aug 2013 17:45 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part One
As expected there won't be a Cyste Ryaenn fan club on board the AH for a quite some time. T'Vala bears watching though. Of all the crew, I can't totally figure her out yet. She and Cage obviously don't get along but I'm not sure yet if that makes her naturally appreciate Ryaenn or if she may have an agenda of her own as well.
Really like the Ryaenn and Ameren dynamic. On this ship it's a good thing the captain has one friendly face, a man who will have her back no matter what. Clearly the establishment does not appreciate this relationship and the fact that Ameren is just a lowly crewman makes this even more interesting.
Date: 23 Aug 2013 17:40 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part One
And she is pretty much exactly what we came to expect, immediately ruffling feathers and putting her own personal stamp on matters. Maybe even the impression of her boot on certain backsides.
One thing is for sure, she ain't here to make friends but something tells me she's here to stay. You better watch out Gage and assorted cronies. There's a new sheriff in town and she's kicking butt and taking names.
Date: 23 Aug 2013 17:37 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part One
There is no place to have a frank discussion about your life in general than in a bar, we all know this.
And Ameren is one smart cookie, that's for sure, getting the lay of the land straight from the horses mouth. More so than learning what he and his captain are going to be in for, however, we get a great second-hand introduction to the hero of this tale. And there is no reason to doubt his words.
Ryaenn is an impressive character and we haven't even met her yet.
Date: 23 Aug 2013 17:34 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part One
Dysfunctional ships and crews are your speciality but this one is particularly interesting as this is no 'mere' border cutter but a ship of the line, even if so barely.
The crew seems to be a reflection of the poor state this vessel has been allowed to fall into.
They need somebody to shake them up a little and show them what's what. I'm having a feeling that this new captain is just what the doctor ordered. Well, maybe not Atlee. Or, of course, it's going to be a recipe for disaster.
Date: 18 Aug 2013 23:07 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part Two -- Duels
Whew! That is, indeed, a chilling end. But I don't think it calls her into question, myself. I mean, just speaking of personal experience, life's not pretty. It's not sparkly. We do what we have to in order to survive it, and sometimes that means getting down and mean. I had to. She had to. I get it. And, tellingly enough, I also go for a killing blow though I'm learning how not to as I go. Hopefully, she'll learn the same; there is a time for it, and a time not to. But otherwise, she's perfectly understandable.
Tellingly, Bux has opinions, but isn't in there fighting himself. Pfft. Anyway, an excellent addition to your tales of Cyste Ryaenn, and her someday-to-be-intrepid crew. Engaging and quick and fun to read; lots of gorgeous details to chew on, lots of awesome cast work.
Date: 18 Aug 2013 22:55 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part Two -- Duels
I love the history you infuse here. You manage a look into a culture that's easily stereotyped, and make it both beautiful and elegant, like their fighting forms. The little details, the deference, the way they treat each other with such courtesy is good for the soul. And also makes me want to slap around Atlee and Bux, but go figure. Even so, I absolutely look forward to reaching more.
And it was nice to see her beauty as a woman acknowledged, as well. Yes, she's a survivor, she's tough, she's got blades, but she's a woman, too.
Date: 18 Aug 2013 22:40 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part Two -- Duels
Whew! Sparks fly in more than one way. Poor Ryan. Ouch. And Ryaenn here, her spiritual and perhaps literal successor. Amazing stuff. I loved the Caitian v. Rylek duel there, that was awesome, as was their camaraderie at the end of it, recognizing the skills of the other. I like that Ryaenn complimented that ferocity; it's sorely needed in the Fleet, I think, though not without the diplomacy. Which, despite certain parties (Hi, McGregor) is still a requirement for not starting wars. Ryaenn really does seem to get that, which definitely means marks in her favor.
I like how her and Gage are not quite born enemies or anything, just clearly have a rift. You get the impression they could become very effective or very dysfunctional, depending upon their choices. Which, of course, is a masterful stroke writing-wise. They aren't fated one way or the other. They have to earn it.
As to your prior comment, re: counselors, I get it. My very best friend is a psychologist, and I've had several shrink friends (and all of them think I should have been a shrink), so I'm not shabby at understanding 'em and also understanding the wariness of 'em. Heh. I actually have a shrink character; he's a sparky, genuine, irreverent and somewhat independent minded guy who doesn't pull punches. Reminds me some of Phil Boyce, but with more teeth. So, I like Joe so far; we'll see if he continues to pass muster. (As an unrelated aside, I'd lay odds on my Doc being able to crack McGregor if you gave him enough time. They both have big brass ones, they're both cunning SOBs and Brian has enough badass behind him to make it an interesting challenge.)
Date: 18 Aug 2013 00:24 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part Two -- Duels
Deeeeelightful. More awesomeness from Ryaenn. I like how she's winning the Doc over despite Bux. I really like her interaction with Joe, too; he strikes me as potentially a good counselor, not near so overbearing as Troi could often be, more just giving a damn and offering his services without pushing until it breaks. Ameren is awesome at the end here; he's got well-earned confidence, but I like that you didn't make him superman, too; I like that he didn't just hand Kerrek a beating. It speaks to more of that lovely realism you're so good at. Yes, he's good, no, he's not perfect.
Don't tell Ameren he's not perfect - he certainly likes to think he is. I bet he and Tabatha got along swimmingly during their time together.
The Doc is getting won over but she's a sit on the fence type so she may be won over the other way too. But Ryaenn obviously has a way about her and a mission to convince and win people to her side.
Not quite when it comes to Joe Marsters. She is leery of him because he's a counsellor. Something I'd relate to myself to be honest. This is going to be my first time writing a counsellor character actually. Your vote of confidence on him helps. Again, thank you for reading.
Date: 18 Aug 2013 00:12 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part Two -- Duels
Ha! I wonder -- I just wonder -- if it's McGregor who started that cross-training institution and it spread, or if he picked it up somewhere else himself. But he's kind of a trend setter.
I know, not fair to compare crews. Even so, it's your fault for writing such dynamic ones. I love T'Vala so far. She's charming, for lack of a better word -- she's Vulcan, but she's also not a parody of a Vulcan. She has her own quirks, including her petty little pleasure at the slapdown in the briefing. I like that she and her captain are building something of an alliance; Ryaenn is going to need those, in the days ahead, especially with command stacking the deck against her like it is.
I'd like to think McGregor did, certainly, I can imagine him bragging about it to the stoopid Fleeters. Although, in my vision of the Border Patrol Service, the fact they're probably not as well funded, get the hand me downs more often than not, and probably don't have the same pool of recruits with ships crewed by lesser numbers, I'd imagine a greater need for cross departmental training to allow off shifts.
Yeah - you called them dynamic crews. Love you.
It's interesting to write T'Vala. She's not the stuck up Vulcan type and she's not a Vulcan with issues such as T'Vel or trying to find a balance between dual identiites such as Spock. I hope I maintain her as Vulcan but show that Vulcans have facets, strengths and failings.
Ryaenn is going to need friends. In ways, T'Vala is a natural ally - they're both scientists, restrained and have issues with Gage. However, there is the historical Andorian/Vulcan aspect but I doubt it will manifest itself between these two. In fact, you never know how the pair might develop.
Date: 18 Aug 2013 00:05 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part One
I didn't review every chapter, but I did read them all. I like the nod to Tabatha. Just to get that out of the way.
But I'm also struck by the style. It's absolutely the same as Kestrel, but as you said, it's more serious, more straight-forward. It makes for a really delightful blend of the dramatic and the interpersonal. You do both well, and you hit the tone here exceptionally well. Ryaenn comes across as exceptionally realistic in her damage and no-nonsense about the same; she doesn't hide it away in shame, she accepts it and lives with it and works to overcome it. The crew's response to this is likewise very realistic. The Harrier is a royal mess, but not because anyone's crawling the subsystems reprogramming shit (I'm looking at you, McGregor), but because you have too many cooks in the kitchen. Her XO is every born-XO ever -- competent in his realm, but likely never capable of ascending to a captaincy. It takes a particular bit of nerve to do that job, and he doesn't have it.
I like Joe. I like Willows. I like that Cyste has a friend there with her. I like a whole lot of things, and I also want to kick Ston's ass for trying to make her life harder than it need me. We don't know yet how she'll react under pressure whilst in command, but so far, she's making all of the right moves and despite being hurt, and still recovering from that hurt, she's not crazy, and she's not showing any signs of being a danger to herself or others.
I like it. I liked her when she was someone else, and I like her now apparently changed and come into her own. And I'm looking forward to seeing where you take this. I don't know that it'll displace the Kestrel's crew as my favorite ever, but certainly it's a worthy crew to love anyway. You're good at that; at the big ensemble pieces, that cover a lot of people to paint a large, nuanced picture. It's a talent I envy the Hell out of.
McGregor whistles innocently.
Thank you for the kind words. I do love me an ensemble piece it has to be said. My favourite television shows do tend to be such, as do many of my fiction reads. I'm blown away by authors such as you who crawl inside a character's head and stay there. I'm a head hopper and I like getting glimpses of different characters and see what they bring to the table. It all makes for different ways to tell a story. My talent does not lie in the way you can tell your story in such a crafted beautiful form. Though I may try to do so - maybe even write one of these stories in that style or restricted to ne character's perspective.
I do try to weave a story with the dramatic and the interpersonal, and often the comic as well. I appreciate you saying you like the tone and style here and it works. Again, thank you for the words on that and for being so kind to read this when you've already done me a huge service with your love for Kestrel.
Date: 17 Aug 2013 16:32 Title: Aegolius Harrier - Forged In Ice - Part One
Oh, a chilling ending here to part one. The captain's ability to piss off Ston was nice, I liked the way the two of them went at it but not in any overt way ... it was all subtle. Ryaeen really stood her ground and trounced him with her knowledge.
Joe's interaction with her were also fun and I hope to see more of that dynamic. Joe's got a tough job to do as the crew is very fractured on a lot of issues ... making sure Ryaeen is stable may be the least of his concerns.
Next to the captian, Joe has the hardest job on the ship. And that's before the Cardassians arrive to take up a job onboard. There's a fair few issues on board the ship, though others that were more active in the war probably have it worse but the Harrier is not a happy ship for sure. Time will tell.
Glad you liked the Joe/Ryaenn interaction. Writing the Ryaenn and Joe dynamic will be admittedly one of the harder aspects to write I think. I'm dreading and looking forward to it.
As for Ston, Ryaenn is smart enough to not be overt as she knows the Admiral will only use it against her. But there's definitely no love lost and that's going to be trouble at some future point for sure.