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1
Wizards Way / Re: A Tale of The Darkest Tome
« Last post by Phoenix on April 12, 2019, 07:25:05 PM »
So many Tome's?!
You may need to do a rundown of what they are and stand for ect.

Very well written so far Saint!  :read1: Definitely curious to see what happens next.  :thumb:
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Phoenix Chronicles / Re: ~Foundation: Introduction~
« Last post by Phoenix on March 29, 2019, 11:24:50 AM »
I'm now working on chapter 10, but I don't want to post more until people have caught up with where the story is at right now.  :ninja:
I am looking for people to go through what I have, so if you can spare a little time it would mean a lot to me if you let me know what you thought.
3
Public Plaza / Tome City is four years old today!
« Last post by New Overlord on March 22, 2019, 09:48:51 AM »
Tome City is four years old today!  :balloons: :happybirthday:

Reply to this thread and you'll be sent 400 groats! We'll be adding an option to convert this into money shortly, so they'll all add up.
(1,000 groats for £1, $1 ect.

How many posts will we get before the end of the day?

:Overlord:
4
Phoenix Chronicles / :Chapter seven: Supportive connections.
« Last post by Phoenix on March 20, 2019, 12:09:56 PM »
   As Mike awoke the next morning, he was surprised to see that both Gregg and Andi were no longer in his room. He dressed quickly, picking up his mobile phone off the side table as he did so, and then made his way through the house.
   It didn’t take him long to realise that he was completely alone as there were no signs of life throughout, which made him a little confused. All the clocks that he passed showed that it was still early morning, so it wasn’t as though he had been asleep all day.
   Deep in thought, he moved into the sitting room and slid his phone out of his pocket, and scrolled through all of his contacts. One of them, and the person that he was hoping to speak too, was Julian Stockwell.

   The two of them were in many of the same classes at school, although Mike never really spoke to him much outside of it. He was doubtful of the eleven digits on his screen, as he realised that the number may not even be his any longer. He took a deep breath though, and readied himself for the potential inevitable dial tone that would show he was right.
   “Mike?” Julian answered. “Is that you?” he asked.
   Mike, now alert, leant forwards slightly and ran his free hand through his hair.
   “Yes, sorry-I wasn’t sure if this was still your number or not,” he replied.
   “Ah,” Julian paused for a moment and waited. “Was that all you wanted? It sounds like something’s wrong,”
   “Everything’s wrong,” Mike admitted. “I need your help,” he said as he took a deep breath.
   “Oh? What is it? I’ll help if I can.”
    Mike smiled, and could only hope that his plan would pay off.
   “You mentioned before that you knew someone in America, are you still in contact with them?”
   “Yes, I am actually.”
   “I need to get a message to someone,” Mike tried to explain. “-To some people, but we’ve been having trouble contacting them.”
   “I can try and phone my friend up and see if they can pass it on?”
   “They really need to be able to drive over to theirs if possible, her phone line is out and there really aren’t any other ways of getting through.”
   “I think I can persuade them to help me out, they owe me a favour,” Julian said happily. “What’s the message? And who is it for?”
   “It’s for Gregg and Andi’s older sister,” Mike sighed sadly.
   “Oh, I forgot she was over there too. From what I remember she’s actually not too far off where my friend Colin lives.”
   “That will be useful,” he said hopefully.
   “So what should I tell him?”
   “Their aunt’s family is over there too, they all need to fly back as soon as they can.”
   “Should I say why?” Julian asked a little, slightly worried.
   “Gregg and his parents were hurt in the storm,” Mike answered. He heard Julian gasp on the other end and closed his eyes as he continued. “Gregg’s okay, sort of-but their parents didn’t make it.”
   “Right,” Julian said as he spurred into action. Mike could hear movement over the phone, and after a minute or two he spoke once more. “Give me all the details you know, I’ll write everything down and contact him as soon as we hang up.”
   “Won’t he be a little annoyed with the early wake up?”
   “Maybe,” Julian replied. “But the last I heard he worked late nights, so he’s probably still awake right now.”
   “Thank you,” Mike said gratefully.
   He then walked across the room to the pile of paperwork that had been left behind for Jennifer to look through, sitting right on the top were Adalyn’s contact information and home address.

-

   After passing along all the information that he could to Julian, he then called three other numbers. This time, instead of explaining himself over the phone, he asked if they could come over to his house. They all agreed instantly, and assured him that they would be there soon.
   As he waited, Mike rummaged around the house for something to eat and moved outside into the back garden. To make it easier for his friends to enter, he unclasped the lock on the gate as he passed, and made his way to the patio area which was sheltered from the sun by several tall trees.
   Ryan showed up first, announcing his arrival with an almost exaggerated arm gesture that Mike found himself laughing at.
   He closed the gate behind him, and grinned with satisfaction.
   “I haven’t been over to yours in months, when was it? April or something like that?”
   “That sounds about right,” Mike replied nodding his head. “I’ve asked Courtney and Alex over as well,” he said as Ryan sat down.
   “That’s alright, it’ll be nice to see them again. I don’t think I have since we broke up for the Summer holidays.”
   “Me either to be honest, I know Courtney was away on holiday for the first week of August, but she’s back now.”
   “I am indeed,” her voice beamed. “And happy to be too, that holiday camp was a nightmare. It rained the whole time we were there,” she said complaining.
   Ryan laughed in reply, showing off the light in his bright blue eyes as he creased up with joy.
   “It’s not funny you know,” Courtney sulked playfully, taking her place beside Mike on the chairs.
   “Isn’t it? Who was it who said that that would happen on the last day of term?” Ryan grinned.
   Courtney thought for a moment, and then glared at him.
   “You,” she replied shaking her head smiling.
   Her light brown hair was styled neatly, with a small section at the front tied in a plait across the top of her head. The rest bunched together in a side ponytail, which was gliding down her left side.
   “Wait,” Ryan began as he began wondering to himself. “Were you right behind me walking up the driveway? I didn’t notice you,” he asked Courtney.
   “I was,” she snickered. “I was trying to sneak up on you, but you were walking too fast. My ninja skills are only as good as the speed that people are walking apparently,”
   She beamed once more as she saw Alex approaching, and stood up to hug each of her friends in turn.

   Once everyone was sitting down once more, Mike leant back on his chair unsure of how to approach the subject of why he had asked his friends to come over. Alex upon seeing this, smiled encouragingly, and sat back in his seat as well.
   “I’m not sure how long I have before my mum and-” he stopped as he waited to find the right words. “-But I’ll try and explain as quickly as I can.”
   Ryan shifted in his chair slightly, and turned all of his attention onto Mike.
   “What’s going on?” Courtney asked. “Is everything alright?”
   “No, not really,” Mike replied sadly. “I’ve asked you three here because you’ve been really good teaming up and organising things in the past. And I need you to do that right now.”
   “I think we can manage that,” Alex nodded. “What are we organising?”
   “A group of people, I’m not sure how many yet but quite a few.”
   “Are we all going to see something fantastic? Like a show?” Courtney asked hopefully.
   “No,” Mike replied as he hung his head. “Hardly anybody knows at the moment, it’s not exactly a secret but we wanted to make sure that Gregg was okay fully first.”
   “Is he? What happened?” Ryan asked, concern audible in his voice.
   “He was driving home with his parents in the storm-”
   “-Is he okay?” Courtney cut in. Even though he wasn’t looking at them, he could tell that each of them was visibly worried about the situation. Which was the main reason he couldn’t bring himself to look up.
   “Emotionally, right now honestly no I don’t think he is. He was the only one that made it out of the car that night,”
   Mike heard each one gasp with shock, and took a deep breath as he prepared himself for the questions he knew they’d ask.
   “Where is he?” Ryan wondered.
   “He’s with Andi and my mum in town, I think. They were all out before I woke up, so I’m not entirely sure though. I also don’t really know all the details but they’re apparently being taken to a temporary home before they move on to their aunts.”
   “Their aunt Marian? I love her, she gave me home-made fudge for my birthday once,” Courtney said hopefully. Mike shook his head, doubtful as he did so as he wasn’t entirely sure. He hadn’t wanted to know, due to being angry that they hadn’t been able to stay with his family, and so hadn’t asked.
   “I think it’s with his other aunt, they’re still trying to track down his sister from what I’ve heard too, so I’ve asked someone else to see if they can get hold of her in America.”
   Mike then sat in silence, listening as they discussed the best way of contacting. The only indication that he was paying attention, was to nod when they asked if they were gathering everyone for the funeral.

{~}

   Andi stepped out of the car and looked out onto the perfectly manicured lawn, and sighed sadly. It simply didn’t make sense to either of them that they couldn’t stay with Mike and his parents until their aunt arrived, but what else could they do?
   The house in front of them wasn’t what he had expected, although that wasn’t hard. Neither of them had asked about it, other than what time they would have to be there. Other than a rather ominous first impression, it was a well looked after building.
   The single story building was surrounded by flowers and trees in full bloom, which made Andi frown a little as he remembered how his mother had loved gardening too.

   Gregg shifted his hair slightly, so that the wound on his head was hidden slightly and opened the car door on the other side. Raye was by his side within moments, trying to help as he reached for his shoulder bag that was beside him.
   “I’m alright,” he halfheartedly stated, not quite believing himself as he spoke.
   Andi glanced at the two of them and walked around the outside of the car to the boot, and peered inside.
   There were three suitcases in all, two smaller ones and a slightly bigger one which had the majority of their clothes in. He picked the first one out without a word and began to reach for the next when he heard someone approaching.
   “Raye, I’m glad you made it okay,” a woman said as she neared the three of them.
   “Traffic was horrible on the way over, I they’re doing more clear up work in the town centre,” she explained.
   “Ah, that would be why you were a little late, I was starting to wonder.”
   “Gregg, Andi-” Raye began as she indicated to them both. “This is Caroline, she will be looking after you until your aunt Tabitha arrives, and we can sort out your living arrangements after.”
   Gregg stood up painfully and gave her a brief smile, which she returned somewhat gratefully.
   “I’m so sorry for your loss,” she said sympathetically.
   Gregg immediately looked away and gazed at the floor, wondering as he did so how many people would say it throughout their lives.
5
Phoenix Chronicles / Re: ~Foundation: Introduction~
« Last post by Saint on March 11, 2019, 07:04:48 PM »
Characters are progressing nicely, keep it up.



... I want the raccoon. (Which you misspelt one btw, search for racoon and you'll find it.)
6
Wizards Way / Re: A Tale of The Darkest Tome
« Last post by Saint on March 11, 2019, 06:39:28 PM »
Interlude 2

The old man took a big gulp of his drink and dropped the empty cup on the table.  He leaned back in his chair, put his hands on his belly, and waited.  The adventurers, one staring on with wide eyes and one stoic with arms crossed and a stern stare, let the gap persist until:

“So?” chimed the girl.

“So what?”

“So what next?”

“Oh I’m sorry my dear, I can’t possibly tell the story with an empty cup.”

The scaly nostrils of the kobold flared.

“We’ve paid you,” he huffed, “Go buy a drink.”

“Well then how would I make my money if I spent my fee on supplies?” laughed the old man.  “No, no, I’d ask you kindly to fetch the next round, so that my throat doesn’t dry up from all this talking.”

“And what makes you think we even want to hear your babble any longer?  We were promised information on the Treasure, so far you’ve simply told us of a ghoul hunt.”

“Every story starts somewhere, my boy.  This particular one starts with a grieving mother and the Youngwraith that took her girl.”

“So the Youngwraith is real?” the girl cooed.  The old man winked at her and tapped his nose.

“Of course the Youngwraith isn’t real,” scoffed the kobold.  “None of this is.  This whole thing is just a ploy to keep us listening so we’ll pay his bar tab for the night.  I bet you haven’t even heard of the Treasure, you just overheard us talking of it.”

“And by what logic do you draw these conclusions?” the old man challenged, playing with the rim of his tankard.

“What possible experience could a man in such tattered rags have with beasts like ghouls?”  snapped the kobold, clearly aiming to wound the man’s pride.  No such wound was made, however, just a wry smile dancing on the corner of his lips.

“The years have not been kind to me, but then who have they favoured in our times?  I see your scales, and I know what you used to be, or more importantly, what you still pretend to be.  Surely you have stories of your kingdom, but if you were to tell them I would not accuse you of lies simply because that kingdom is gone.”

If this bothered the kobold, he didn’t show it.

“Very well, convince me.  What do you have to show me that all of this isn’t simply a childish dream that you’ve glorified for profit?”

“Oh you want to know of my dreams?  Well I can tell you boy, at the beginning of my tale I had none.  I was at the pinnacle of my life, a Paladin of Pelor, with armour so lustrous it even reflected the darkness.  The wisps of grey you see on my head now were a long and full blonde mane, my spindly arms had muscle and tone, I could out-fight almost any man or beast to challenge me, and I roamed the Tomes, combing bounty boards to help out those truly in need.  That was the life I lived, and that was the life I wanted.”

At this point, the man gestured to the scabbard on his belt.  While his clothes were dirty and tattered, the sword was clearly an artefact of a better time.  It wasn’t perfectly kept, but it was definitely in better condition than anything else he owned.

“Your proof of my worth is here,” said the man, as he drew the sword.  A lot of eyes darted over at the scrape of metal against sheath, but they went back to their business when the weapon was simply placed on the table.  The blade was sliver on one edge, but the other edge had been set with a duller metal.  The adventurers recognised this plating as cold iron like the blades the old man had described in his tale.  The hilt was gold, wrapped in leather, and set with a single blood red jewel beneath the inscription:

“Broshildha?”  the girl hummed.  “I recognise that name.”

“As you should,” confirmed the kobold, “Broshildha was the sword of The Black Paladin.  He’s wanted for war crimes in six of the seven Tomes.  Are you honestly trying to convince us that you’re a wanted fugitive, and you’re willing to risk revealing yourself to the seven Tomes now after all these years just because you want a drink?”

“Believe me or don’t.  You asked for my credentials and this sword is as close as I have.  And no, I’m not doing all of this for a drink.”

“Oh sure.  Why are you doing this then?”

“My story needs to be told.”

“And why us?”

“Because I believe you two may be the ones who can change the ending.”

“Flattery gets you nowhere,” spat the kobold as he stood, clearly preparing to leave.  “You’re not The Black Paladin, I’m not buying you another drink, and we’re done here.”

The man stood and placed a hand on the kobold’s shoulder.

“The Black Paladin is wanted in Red Tome too, you know.  History is written by the winners, my boy, and I lost.  Hear me out, please.”

The two shared a glance.  The kobold had no doubt with that look that the man had been shamed by Red Tome, just as he had been himself.  He waved to the barkeep and signalled for another round.
7
Role play / Re: The Lost Treasure: A Dungeons and Dragons style role play.
« Last post by Saint on March 11, 2019, 06:34:31 PM »
And 25 is a success.  This time Cody manages to summon forth a jet of water which hits the tornado.  The tornado keeps spinning but its advance on Cody has been slowed, giving her time to stand.

Success 3/8
Fail 2/3
8
Phoenix Chronicles / :Chapter six: A temporary beginning.
« Last post by Phoenix on March 11, 2019, 12:21:51 PM »
   Andi stood outside the room as he battled with the decision of whether to leave or stay. Every ache in his body was screaming at him to go back inside the room a little later, to let Gregg calm down before he tried to speak to him once more. But there was also a small part of him that wanted to just go back to Mike’s house and avoid the situation and confrontation entirely.
   He swallowed as he tried to bury the emotions that were threatening to surface, and searched up and down the corridor. Emma and Brendan were no where in sight, and he slid his hands into his pockets-to give himself something to do, not because they were cold.
   The door creaked quietly open beside him, and he felt Michelle place her hand gently on his shoulder.
   “Can you spare a few minutes to talk?” she asked him calmly. Andi nodded in reply, and followed her down the hallway to the waiting room.

   Once inside, she motioned for him to sit on one of the comfortable large sofas to one side, as she herself opposite him.
   “Gregg was just surprised to see you,” she said quietly. “I really wouldn’t take it personally, he’s had a rough time here.”
   “I tried saying sorry, I really didn’t think about why he wanted to tell me about our parents until today.”
   “You being here with him would have helped, but he’s been having issues I doubt you would have been able to do much about,” she said as she leant forward. “I think what happened has hit him personally,”
   “Like, physically?” Andi asked. Michelle shook her head, and frowned slightly as she thought.
   “No, I think he’s finding it hard to deal with it all, it’s-” she said pausing for a moment. “It’s almost as if he’s blaming himself right now.”
   “But why? It wasn’t his fault.”
   “I wish I knew Andi, I really do. Listen, we’ve been trying to get ahold of your sister. I know Raye has been asking for contact details but as the number we have isn’t working, I was wondering if it was the right one?”
   “It is, she just hasn’t had much luck with her phone right now,” he explained.
   “Is there any other way you can think of we can try and let her know what’s going on?”
   “Not really,” Andi replied honestly.
   “Okay, well you’ll let us know if you think of anything won’t you?”
   “Of course,” he nodded.
   Michelle then stood up to leave, seemingly satisfied with his answers. As soon as she was about to leave though, Andi stood up suddenly, causing her to turn back around to face him.

   A few moments passed in silence, where Andi tried to gather the nerve to ask what he was thinking. After that, he took a step towards her and rested his hand on his mothers necklace underneath his t-shirt.
   “Is he okay?”
   “In what way?” Michelle asked.
   “I saw the cast on his leg, and his arms,” he thought aloud.
   “The bandages came off on his arms only this morning, most of the cuts are healing but the bruises are still going to bother him for a little while.”
   “Is he hurt anywhere else?”
   “There are some nasty bruises on his ribcage and stomach, some of them were making it painful for him to breathe initially but they’ve started to clear up now. There is also a nasty gash on his forehead, you probably saw the dressing there.”
   “I did,” Andi confirmed. “Is he okay other than that though? I mean, did he have to have any operations?”
   “No, he was fairly lucky considering. His leg will take the longest to heal, he’ll need to come back in around five weeks to remove the cast so he’ll be on crutches until then.”
   “Okay,” he said as he tried to calm down. He had wanted to ask Gregg personally how he was doing, but it didn’t seem likely that he would want to talk about his situation with him right now.
   “If he doesn’t stress himself out too much, or injure himself further, he should be able to leave tomorrow. Do you have anywhere you can stay?”
   “I’ve been staying with Mike’s parents since the accident, my parents wrote in their will that if we couldn’t stay with family then we were to stay with them. I didn’t know where else to go, so I just stayed with them.”
   “Well I’m sure Raye will figure something out soon,” said reassuringly. “She may not seem like the nicest person right now but she really does try to do the right thing.”
   “We’ll see I guess,” Andi sighed.
   “I need to head back, will you be okay here on your own? The canteen isn’t too far away if you’re hungry.”
   “I’ll be okay,” he assured her. “What makes you so sure I’ll stay though?”
   Michelle smiled and laughed gently.
   “I don’t know, but I’m hoping you will.” She replied, leaving the room shortly after.

-

   Andi stood outside the door that Gregg was behind, battling with himself as he questioned his next move. Emma and Brendan had gone home hours beforehand, and he was completely on his own just as he had been earlier on in the day.
   The evening had rolled around slowly, with the night sky gradually creeping in. Still, he had waited, wavering on the verge of wanting to avoid the potential argument that would happen, and needing to be by his brothers side.
   Nervously, he clutched onto the toy that he had purchased in the hospital gift shop, and squeezed it gently. The little raccoon didn’t protest, and went back to it’s original shape moments later.
   He sighed and reached for the door handle, holding onto it tightly as panic spread throughout. As he paused, he noticed that the lights inside the room were turned off. Maybe Gregg was sleeping?

   Michelle approached him slowly, carrying a thin blanket and a pillow in her arms. As her shift had ended, she had changed into a pair of shorts and a t-shirt, which was why Andi didn’t agknowledge her as she stood beside him straight away.
   “I checked on him a little while ago, he was resting then,” she said calmly. He glanced beside him, smiling awkwardly as he relaxed a little.
   “I never left you know,” he said as he turned away once more. “I couldn’t.”
   “I hoped you wouldn’t,” Michelle admitted. “He really hasn’t been doing well here on his own.”
   “I tried apologising, but he wouldn’t listen.”
   “A brother’s bond is stronger than you realise, he may be hurt but he’ll never leave your side. You two are a team,”
   “My mum said that once,” Andi said sadly.
   “And she was right, are you going inside?” she asked. He nodded slowly as he took a deep breath,  leaving Michelle to smile and pass the bedding over to him. “If you need anything, you can ask for Hannah or Henry, they’ve been looking after Gregg and are doing a late shift tonight.”
   Andi nodded and slid both the pillow and blanket under his arm. Just as Michelle was about to turn away though, she stopped and spoke once more.
   “Andi,” she began. He turned to face her once more, as he felt the need to listen intently to what she was about to say. “You and Gregg need to be in this together from now on. The next stage of your lives without your parents is going to be tough. So you need to be in this together from the beginning, you need to listen to each other and trust each other completely. Everything around you will be changing yes, so you two need to be facing it on as one. This is going to be hard enough on you both on your own, so don’t make it harder than it has to be.”
   Michelle concluded with a stern expression, which made Andi frown as he realised she was right.

   He turned the door handle slowly, and as quietly as he could, as he tried to make sure he wasn’t disturbing his brother at all. As he crept in, he could see a faint glow that was streaming through the window, which illuminated the room in a muted glow.
   Andi closed the door behind him, and made his way over to the chairs and sat down staring at Gregg as he slept. He was frowning, and shuffling around occasionally, grimmacing with his eyes closed. As he was unsure if he should wake him, he glanced down at the racoon teddy that he had picked up and placed the bedding on the floor.
   He took a deep breath, and stepped forward a few steps to be beside Gregg’s bedside and placed the soft toy under his arm.
   Gregg awoke straight away, but opened his eyes gradually. Upon seeing Andi’s face, he winced and shifted so he was lying on his side facing him.
   “Sorry, I didn’t mean to wake you,” Andi said quietly.
   “I didn’t think you’d come back,” Gregg shrugged, looking at the gift his brother had brought him.
   Andi frowned, had Gregg hoped that he had left him after all?
   “I never actually left the hospital,” he replied. “I left the room because you wanted me out, but I stayed here.”
   “Oh,” Gregg glanced at Andi and the chairs behind him and back to the racoon. “Are you staying here?” he asked.
   “I was hoping too,” Andi replied awkwardly. “I can go if you really want me too though.”
   Gregg shook his head slightly, but it was enough for Andi to relax enough to wrap his arms around and give his brother a hug.
   “I thought you’d left me again,” Gregg whispered to him. “I don’t like being alone.”
   “I only left because you told me too, I wanted to stay. I’m sorry,” Andi apologised once more as he pulled away.
   “I’m sorry too,” Gregg admitted. “I was just upset earlier-”
   “-I get it, you don’t have to explain.”
   “The raccoon’s pretty cool, thank you.”
   Andi grinned and pulled up one of the chairs as Gregg looked on.
   “You can buy little accessories for him in the shop, bandages and first aid stuff. I was tempted to get a leg cast for the little guy,” he joked. Gregg shook his head and chuckled, picking up the raccoon’s little legs as he did so.
   “It’s not a good look, I’m not sure he’d suit it to be honest,” Gregg said grudgingly. “He’d have to have the crutches to go along too to help him walk.”
   “I thought raccoons walked on all fours?” Andi thought aloud. Gregg nodded in reply and pointed to the window.
   “This guy’s different,” he said smiling slightly. “There’s a pull out sofa bed over there if you want to sleep, it’ll be more comfortable than those chairs.”
   Andi nodded and immediately stood up to get ready to sleep, he did so without another word, as when he turned back to pick up the blanket he saw that Gregg was asleep once more.

{~}

   Jewel awoke the next morning, restless but also excited. Her bed had already been taken to her new home, along with most of their furniture, and so she was reduced to sleeping on a pile of pillows from their sofa in what used to be her room.
   It was a long drive to the new building, so an early start was in order. Usually having to wake up didn’t bother her all too much, but today was different. She hadn’t slept well, as she had worried that there wouldn’t be enough time to pack the last of her things before they had to set off.
   Sighing, she gathered what she could carry and carefully placed them in the last box that her mother, Ava, had given her the night before. There wasn’t much to put inside after the cushions were out of the way, and her wash bag was packed, still she worried.
   She combed her long blonde hair, tying it up and placing it into a messy bun that rested just above her neck, and tried to ready herself for the move.
   It would take them several hours to drive at least, music and pit stops along the way were going to be important to avoid getting bored.

{~}

   Gregg stepped outside the hospital, with Andi, and gazed at the sky. Even with the crutches he was finding it hard to balance, although that wasn’t the thing that was going through his mind as he stood waiting for Jennifer to catch up with them.
   It was because he couldn’t believe that the weather had turned so drastically the night that he had arrived. Now as he stood outside, he almost couldn’t believe that it had been so damaging to everything that it touched.
   “Are you okay?” Andi asked as he knelt down to tie his shoe lace.
   “I’m fine,” Gregg lied as he struggled to piece together the last few days inside his mind.
   Jennifer tapped him gently on the shoulder, and he spun around to see her carrying a bag.
   “You left some things behind,” she smiled as she indicated what she was holding.
   “I’ll take them,” Andi offered. Jennifer handed it to him, and he peered inside for a moment before taking out a seeled envelope.
   “Can you open it for me?” Gregg asked him. Andi nodded, and peeled away the backing so that Gregg could see what was inside.
   Andi pulled out their fathers necklace, with wedding band still attached. He stepped forward straight away, and motioned for Gregg to lower himself a little so he could place the chain around his neck.

   Gregg, who was taller than Andi by almost a head in height, did so carefully as he kept an eye on the envelope. Something else was inside it, but he couldn’t work out what it could be.
   As soon as the clasp was secure, he reached out to see what it was, only to almost drop what it was when he saw it.
   Andi caught the pocket watch with both hands before it hit the floor, and breathed a sigh of relief.
   “How-?” he wondered aloud.
   “Dad-” Gregg began. “He asked me to look after something but wouldn’t let me see what it was. He slid it into my pocket, I completely forgot about it until now.”
   “Well, you’d better look after it then,” Andi said as he bit his lip gently. He then placed it safely in Gregg’s pocket, and placed the now empty piece of paper into the bin beside him.

-

   Gregg awoke later in Mike’s bed, in the late afternoon, to hear people talking downstairs. His friend’s bedroom was cool, with a refreshing breeze that was drifting through the open window to his right. He sat up slowly, and slid the pocket watch out to inspect it closer.
   Both Mike and Jennifer had insisted that he were to sleep on the bed, refusing to accept that he would be okay on the floor or pull out guest bed that they rarely used. Although grateful, Gregg did feel a little strange doing so.
   The silver metal was cold in his hands as he held it, but it didn’t bother him. He smiled instead, opening the clasp and watching the hands tick on perfectly in time from when he had wound it up from earlier on in the day.
   On the inside, he could see the individual cogs that helped the little piece of machinery to run smoothly, and he found himself transfixed as he stared at them.
   Facing the dial and hands, were words that he had chosen to be engraved for his fathers birthday three years earlier.
   ‘Our time together is just never quite enough. From Adalyn, Gregg and Andi.’
   Gregg closed his eyes as he clasped it shut once more, and fought the urge to turn it over and look at the secret compartment that hid something that his father refused to let him see until now. Instead he slid it once more into his pocket for safe keeping, and slid his legs over the side of the bed.

   The crutches that he was using to support himself were just within reach, so he wouldn’t have to stretch too far. It was however painful to lean upon them, especially as several of the cuts on his arm were still healing, which Gregg knew he had to bare as it was the only way he was going to be able to move around for a long while.
   He reached out for them and stood up gradually as he tried to make out what was going on downstairs, and carefully made his way into the hall.
   As he started to descend the stairs, Andi appeared in the doorway and made his way up a few of the steps to meet him.
   “Raye is here,” he said quietly. “She managed to get through to aunt Tabitha, she’s apparently going to take us in.”
   “I’m not sure if that’s good news or not,” Gregg mumbled.
   “Me either, I think Jennifer was hoping that we would stay with her as we don’t really know her all that much.”
   “She’s dad’s step-sister isn’t she? Mum always said they didn’t see eye to eye.”
   “That could be just a family thing though, I know we don’t usually,” Andi pointed out. “Anyway, she wants to talk about what’s going to happen next. I wanted to wait until you were awake first though.”
   Gregg smiled weakly and reached the bottom of the stairs just as Andi disappeared into the kitchen momentarily. He reappeared with a drink, which he took into the sitting-room and placed beside an empty seat.

   Gregg sat down beside it, taking a deep breath as he agknowledged Raye sitting at the other end of the room with paperwork once again in front of her.
   “Has Andi told you we have managed to track down your aunt-” she began.
   “-He has,” Gregg replied. “So you haven’t managed to get through to Adalyn or our aunt Marian at all?”
   “Unfortunately not no,” Raye frowned. Gregg and Andi looked to one another, wondering what this would mean for them both.
   “So, what happens now?” Jennifer asked.
   “They have asked that you both move to a temporary home until they are able to travel some time next week.”
   “Why can’t we stay here? It doesn’t make sense to move somewhere, and then again a few days later,” Andi asked.
   “I know it sounds strange, especially as they have listed Jennifer and Charlie as people to look after you both in their will if family can’t be contacted, but-” Raye paused. “-Considering they are willing to take you in, we feel it will be best to respect their wishes.”
   Gregg laughed out loud, causing everyone to stop and stare at him,
   “I’m sorry, but considering what’s happened, wouldn’t it make more sense to leave us here? I can barely walk at the moment, so why do we have to move twice because family we haven’t seen in years have asked us too?”
   “It’s just what they’ve asked of you two,” Raye replied.
   “Well when are they expecting them to move into this half way house?” Jennifer asked her.
   “Not a half way home, a temporary shelter between stays. I’ve made arrangements for the boys to travel today-”
   “-Today?” Gregg snapped. “Come on, we haven’t even been home to collect any of our clothes yet.”
   “Really? I would have thought that would have been the first thing you would have-”
   “-There were more important things to think about,” Andi cut in.
   Raye paused for a moment as she stared at Andi, collecting her thoughts as she did so.
   “Yes,” she spoke after a while. “I can’t change the plans now, they’re expecting you.”
   “This is a joke,” Andi laughed as he stormed out of the room.
   “Gregg, I know we may have stepped on each others toes when we first met-”
   “-You’re right there, but you’re certainly doing nothing to change my opinion of you,” he stated. Then sighing, he stood up and followed his brother upstairs once more.

-

   On the landing, he walked past Mike’s room where Andi was talking on the phone, and waited outside Heather’s bedroom. After knocking three times, he leant against the wall and listened as she shuffled around her room.
   Mike’s older sister answered the door after a few moments, and instantly gave Gregg a hug which he promptly returned. Her dark brown hair was down for a change, and flowing effortlessly over her left shoulder. He smiled weakly as he welcomed the affection, relishing in the warmth of her arms wrapped around his shoulders.
   “Mum asked me to keep an eye on your cuts whilst you were here, do you want me to check any over?” she asked as she pulled away slowly.
   Gregg thought for a moment and nodded, there was one that he was slightly concerned about.
   “On my right shoulder blade,” he said nodding. “Michelle covered it this morning but it’s still stinging a little when I move.”
   “I’ll get the first aid kit,” she said as she shuffled towards the bathroom.

   Gregg stepped inside her room and sat down on the footstool beside her bed. As he waited, he gazed around at the posters covering the walls. They were all images of musicians, apart from one just above her bed.
   “My dad took that photo on our last family holiday,” Heather explained. “It’s one of the few pictures we have with the five of us.”
   “I was just surprised to see it that’s all,” Gregg smiled weakly once more.
   The enlarged photograph that he continued to gaze upon, was of the Halo household five years ago. Heather was sitting beside a ten-year-old Mike and their parents, with a six-year-old little girl waving excitedly behind them all.
   “I know, mum and dad have their own way of dealing with Rosie’s death. Most of the pictures of her are hidden away in albums, it’s a shame really,” Heather admitted.
   Gregg turned so he was facing away from her, and lifted his t-shirt so she could look at the wound on his back easier.
   “Does Mike talk about her much?” he asked her.
   “Not as much as he used too,” she replied. “He mentions her occasionally, but he was rather young at the time, I’m not sure how much he remembers of her to be honest.”
   Heather then peeled the dressing away, and Gregg winced a little.
   “How does it look?”
   “It’s been bleeding a little, and it looks a little inflamed.”
   “Sleeping’s going to be fun then,” Gregg sighed as he rolled his eyes.
   Heather said nothing in return, as she instead focused her attention on gathering another dressing and supplies out of the medical box beside her.
   She worked in silence, cleaning the wound and covering it the best she could. When she was finished though, she wished that she could do more. Many of the bruises were only just starting to show signs of disappearing, especially the ones covering Gregg’s rib cage.
   “Does it hurt to breathe?” she asked him. “It really looks as though it does.”
   Gregg slid his t-shirt on once more, with Heather’s help, and nodded slightly.
   “A little,” he admitted. “The pain isn’t as bad as it used to be though, I was more worried about my leg then so I didn’t really pay attention to much else until they put a cast around it.”
   “So you’ve had trouble sleeping I bet, did they give you any pain killers or anything to help?”
   “The first night wasn’t actually that bad,” Gregg thought aloud. “It was the morning and days after where I really felt what happened. All the swelling showed up then, and most of the bruising on my legs and chest.”
   Heather wrapped her arms around Gregg, pulling him into yet another cuddle. He chuckled sadly and turned around to face her once more, as he hugged her back once more.
   
-

   To pass the time before they knew they were going to be asked to leave, Gregg and Andi decided to sit and watch movies in Mike’s bedroom, where they all sat in silence.
   Even though the door was ajar, they still all jumped a little as Jennifer knocked upon it.
   “Mum! you scared us,” Mike announced as he recovered slightly.
   “Sorry boys,” she said smiling gently.
   “Is it time to leave?” Gregg asked, without looking up.
   “Actually no,” Jennifer said as she leant against the wall. “I had a word with Raye after you went back upstairs.”
   “Oh?” Andi wondered.
   “You do still need to go to the temporary placement, but tomorrow instead. And after we’ve gone into town to pick you out a few things.” Jennifer explained. “As soon as we can get ahold of Adeline and your aunt Marian, she’s asked that you go to your parents place though.”
   “So we’re staying here tonight?” Andi confirmed.
   “Yes, so you’d better think of what you want for dinner because I need to start cooking it.”
   “Anything that isn’t hospital food,” Gregg joked quietly.
   Jennifer grinned and rolled her eyes playfully.
   “I think I can manage that,” she joked as she left the room.

{~}

   Jewel sighed peacefully as she lay back on her bed, smiling as the day was almost over. Although many of the boxes had yet to arrive due to a small delay during transit, the rest had either been unpacked or were waiting to be.
   All of the beds though, were the main pieces of furniture that had been set up and ready specifically so that her whole family could relax after the big move.
   She closed her eyes, finally happy that the journey was over, and nervous about starting a new school.
9
Phoenix Chronicles / So, what are the 'Phoenix Chronicles'?
« Last post by Phoenix on March 10, 2019, 02:22:31 PM »
A brief history:

Phoenix Chronicles initially started with a story that I wrote back when I was at school in 2005-6. It was called 'Brother of an Angel', and the main characters were Brendan and Connor Reace.
I introduced several other characters within their story, most of them were their friends.

As I fell in love with some of the extras that I included, I began working on another story 'Will I ever see you again', staring Jamie and Jewel. The same background characters were included, and I began thinking of ways to create stories so that every single one of them would have a main story just like the two I had finished.
Next up, was 'Derelict Cast Off', the main character of that one being Julian Stockwell.
Phoenix Chronicles then began to fit inside my mind, and I started planning the other stories and where they would be placed out.



So when is Phoenix Chronicles based?

The time line of P/C starts from August 2005-July 2006. The same last year that I was in school. The last part of the series is set many years later.



How is the Phoenix Chronicles split up over that period?

P/c is split up as a set of four sections.

Titles:
Foundation: Introduction
Blueprint: Slander
Buildings: Illusion
Heaven: Knowledge



And what do those titles mean?

Foundation: Introduction sets the groundwork for P/c. It introduces(hence the 'introduction' part) all 34 characters in their own light, and gives a solid 'foundation' for the next part.
Events in Foundation lead into the next section, as well as giving a brief summary of some of the characters important history, and a glimpse into their lives before their own one starts.

Blueprint: Slander is the biggest section of all. Each of the 34 characters has a story to tell. There are 30 stories in Blueprint in all, some of the characters; like Brendan and Connor, and Gregg and Andi are family-and so share their tale where I will be flitting between the different points of view to show the most important part.
Blueprint is the overall title for the section, but each character within it is a part of their own.
Titles in Blueprint will have as their thread name.
(Ex.~)
'B:S {1} Blinded by colour.'
B:S: to represent 'Blueprint: Slander'
{1}: to list the order it is set within Blueprint.
Blinded by colour: the actual story title.

Buildings: Illusion is set after the majority of the P/c characters leave for that year in May due to exams and study leave. It officially ends when they have their prom night, after all the tests.

Heaven: Knowledge is set around 18 or so years later. This ending gives a final farewell to the group, and a look into how the characters lives turned out. Who stayed with who, what are their families like and such.



What about all the timings up until the last section? How are they spaced throughout the year?

Foundation: Introduction starts officially on: Monday 8th August 2005. It ends Monday 12th September 2005
Blueprint: Slander starts on: Monday 5th September 2005, and ends Friday 19th May 2006.
Buildings: Illusion and Heaven: Knowledge have no current planned start and end dates.



How has the series evolved over time? Has anything changed?

Character name wise, no.
I have had to change quite a bit to fix minor plot points that were weakening the story as a whole. Points that didn't make sense, or as time passed, simply weren't believable any more. I am still planning some areas, and fixing parts that just don't work so it is an ongoing process that has taken many years to fit together, but it's getting there.

Originally some of the series also had quite a lot of violence too, which I have tweaked and changed as I've gone through it all. And, as such, some family dynamics that were in the original drafts are different and -I feel- helps the series as a whole.
By doing so though, it has come with it's own challenges.

Family shifts, especially with attitudes and how the characters have reacted to certain situations have also been thought through more, especially surrounding the events that shape Foundation and Gregg and Andi's story as a whole.



I am only just beginning the series of stories that has been swirling around in my head. And so, if you're interested in reading them, feel free to browse the threads and see what I've posted up!
10
Games / Re: Word association
« Last post by Phoenix on March 10, 2019, 12:52:14 PM »
Customers.
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