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So today has been a day of indulging kinks. I finished out a piece a friend of mine asked for me to write for her, involving her two characters. She asked for smut, I gave it, but I picked a canon moment where uh…the focus was more emotional and involved various kinks that aren’t very palatable to most people. Knife-play and blood-play are things I like to write, though, and getting into Sasha’s head was actually quite easy for me to accomplish.

It amazes me, sometimes, how easily I can hear other people’s characters and how I can write their voices with little flaw, but I struggle so hard at times with my own characters and their voices. Savin’s is easy. Jazz’s voice is getting easier to hear. Mitchel’s? Jesus Christ, man, his voice is both the hardest and the easiest for me — he speaks nothing like I do, and therefore he pulls me out of my comfort zone, prose-wise, but I also sometimes can fall flat with it.

I feel like I’m getting better at First Person POV, and that I will continue to improve as long as I continue to practice and experiment with voices. Part of the Sasha/Lee piece below, because the Savin/Jazz smut that’s getting worked on at the moment is just…less literary and more straight up porn.

***

Mine. Mine. Soon enough, he’s laid bare before me. He’s still begging, his voice growing shrill. I wonder just how much he can take — just how much he’ll let me do to him in desperation. My knife feels so light in my hands as I slide along the length of his body, alternating between chaste kisses and harsh bites. If my teeth don’t break skin, and they often do, then they surely will leave deep bruises behind.

No matter how much pain I put him through, his arousal remains unbridled. It’s how I know he truly wants this, that his begging is true. I should take him now, while my own arousal is at its peak, before my knife finds the edge of the first jagged cut and extends it. Instead, I situate myself between his legs, letting my mouth surround him.

Even the pleasure I’m giving him doesn’t keep him from urging me for more. I close my eyes and allow myself a moment to listen, to drink it all in before stopping yet again. The shallow cuts on his legs and the impressions of my teeth all over make me smile. He writhes, pleads for more as I straighten myself and press my knife against the skin of his chest.

I may be a Monster, but at least I am his Monster. The Monster he craves more and more each day. The rest of my mark is made slowly as I relish the way his skin gives way to the blade, the way his blood pools and rushes down the plains of his stomach. The whole time, he cries and whimpers, but never shies away from my touch, or my knife. Ecstasy fills his face just as the pain does, warping it, making it exceptionally beautiful.

Mine,” I growl again, just as I finish the last of the crude S I carved into his skin. I give him no time to recover, no time to try and staunch the flow of blood as I slip my own pants over the edge of my hips.

When I fill him, he lets out another whimper and clutches my arms, eyes welling with tears. He doesn’t stop me. On reaches for me, pulls me closer. With each rock of my hips, his ecstasy grows, becomes more apparent. More tangible, more mine.

His blood soaks my clothes, soaks the sheets of the bed beneath us. It doesn’t matter. Nothing matters. Not even that damned promise. I bite his shoulder, causing him to cry out yet again. My hands are sticky with his blood, with our sweat as our bodies move in tandem.

It’s not long before it’s all too much, and when my own pleasure reaches its peak, I make sure to run my fingers along that mark, the one I gave and took away, only to give again. This time, it was received willingly. Desired. Begged for.

As I wrap my fingers around Lee to help him reach his own edge, they’re coated in his blood. When he cries out, he looks blissful. Even at peace, despite how much I’ve hurt him. How much blood he’s lost. We kiss, and it’s obvious he hardly has any energy left.

“My Monster,” he breathes as we break apart, a faint smile on his lips. Pleasure fades away, leaving only the pain behind.

I promised to protect.

Perhaps some promises are better off undone.

 

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So I edited The Assault (as I’ve been referring to it as). Killed my feels. Killing them everywhere. Editing my Idol piece tomorrow according to a friend’s suggestions and posting it then. Here’s some of the aftermath of The Assault:

***

Jazz panted as he came to a stop, doubling over and placing his hands on his knees. Breathe. He needed to breathe. And to calm down, and to <i>think</i>, and —

He collapsed against the nearest wall, grateful that none of the Palace Guards had stopped him as he (somehow, calmly) walked through the gates. Just a moment. Just a moment to clear his head, then he’d figure out where he was going — what he was going to do.

Shivering, he pushed himself away from the wall and tried to forget the feel of Savin’s hands on his body. Tried to forget how close Savin had actually gotten him unwillingly. His feet moved blindly, leading him to god knows where.

The air surrounding him grew colder, denser as he walked, his breathing slowly evening out. His mouth felt like cotton, dry and sticky all at once. Especially when he found himself in front of Mitchel’s house.

His hand still ached, the pain growing worse whenever he flexed his fingers. Swallowing as best as he could, Jazz took the steps towards Mitchel’s door two at a time, lifting his left hand to knock instead of his right. Maybe Mitchel wasn’t even home, yet.

As much as he had come to dislike the asshole, he was better than the downright bastard waiting for him back at the Palace. That thought only spurred Jazz to knock on the door quickly and as loudly as possible before hugging himself tightly.

What if Savin came looking for him? What if — what if Savin followed him? Or worse yet, what if he were still back in their living quarters, waiting for Jazz to come back so he could “finish” what he started? The thought chilled him straight through to his very core.

Jazz shook his head and shuddered, leaning against the railing for a moment as he waited for Mitchel’s door to open. If it’d open at all, he reminded himself. If Mitchel wasn’t home, he’d have to go somewhere else. Not Mari’s — Mari and Savin were too close. She’d tell Savin where he was in a heartbeat.

Just as his heart began to settle in his shoes, the door swung open slowly, causing Jazz to stand up straight and relax his arms.

“Callahan?” Mitchel asked, arching an eyebrow towards his hair. “Excuse my language, but what the hell are you doing here?”

Any other time, Jazz would have laughed. As it was, his face burned as tears filled his eyes. “Can I — can I please come in?” he murmured, his voice thick and grainy.

Mitchel frowned, but otherwise moved aside and gestured for Jazz to step inside his home. Jazz mumbled a quiet thank you, being careful to keep his distance as he walked past Mitchel. It had been years since he saw the inside of Mitchel’s home, and he wasn’t the least bit surprised to see it hadn’t changed much at all, in that time.

“Would you like something to drink?” Mitchel offered as Jazz collapsed onto his couch.

“Strongest fucking thing you have,” Jazz croaked, putting his head in his hands. “Please.”

Image

I gave myself the goal of 5k, and I exceeded it by about 300 words. Not bad, considering I was also trying to relax and take it easy, not to mention figure out some deeply personal questions. 

I have my answers.

And I completed my goal. It’s been a good day. There’s one scene where I’m questioning how good it actually is, but I intend to clean it up once I get feed back from my BFF. I don’t think the piece is “feelsy” enough. A highlight from today’s writing, however:

***

Mitchel leaned back against the booth, his eyes focusing on some point beyond Jazz as he sipped his drink — scotch, probably, if Jazz remembered correctly. “I’m just concerned, Callahan –”

Jazz laughed, nearly choking on his own beer. “You? Concerned for anyone but yourself? Just — fuck off, okay?” His voice cracked, his sarcastic laughter subsiding as tears threatened to take its place. “You don’t actually care, so stop pretending to.”

“Jasper, I have always cared,” Mitchel whispered, reaching out for Jazz’s hand. Jazz pulled his hand away, sliding it under the table as he glared at Mitchel.

“Don’t call me that,” he snapped, crossing his arms over his chest. He shivered as he remembered Savin saying his full name, the hatred and anger that had seeped around it. “And don’t fucking touch me, either. I know what you’re doing, Mitchel — I’m not playing this fucking game with you.”

“This isn’t a game to me, Callahan,” Mitchel insisted, frowning himself. He tossed back the rest of his scotch and set the empty glass aside. “You and Bates are our Emperors. If there’s trouble in paradise –”

“There’s no trouble, Mitchel,” Jazz said, pushing his own bottle aside as he began to gather the papers in front of him. He shoved his pen in his pocket before scooping up his folder and sliding out of the booth. He needed to leave. Now. Before Mitchel pushed any harder.

Jazz turned on his heel and stormed out of the bar before Mitchel could say anything else in protest. He needed to get home. Needed to just sit and relax and not have anyone talk to him, just for a little bit, before inevitably crawling into bed with Savin and wishing with all his strength that things could just go back to the way they used to be.

Tears were in his eyes before he could stop them, causing Jazz to hug his folder even closer to his heart. Mitchel wouldn’t follow him, right? Mitchel would just leave him alone and get the hint, wouldn’t he? It wasn’t like he actually cared — wasn’t like he actually wanted to help or bring Jazz any comfort. He just wanted Jazz for himself, still, after all these years. 

Right?

In a short while I’ll begin working on my Idol entry, but right now, I’m trying to relax a bit. I’m not at home, am trying to figure some shit out for myself, and am limiting contact with my wife in the meantime. 

I did write nearly 1200 words more of Gray Morning today. I have a huge goal of 5+k tomorrow. We’ll see how many I get. I won’t have any distractions so I should be able to get at least 5. At least. Anyway, snippet time:

***

Savin breathed in deeply, offering Jazz his open pack. Jazz shook his head, waving the cigarettes away. Savin frowned and shrugged his shoulder before lighting one for himself. As he took in the first drag, Jazz tightened his arms around his knees. 

“Nothing excuses my behavior, yesterday,” Savin began, forming his words slowly. Pain laced his voice, along with regret. 

“I know,” Jazz breathed, turning his gaze towards Savin. “Believe me, I know.” 

Savin nodded, pursing his lips together before shaking his head. He kept his eyes on his cigarette, rolling it between his fingers. “Then why –” his voice cracked, causing him to clear his throat. “Then why are you still here?”

“I don’t — I don’t know,” Jazz whispered, turning his gaze out towards the Palace gates. The clouds threatened rain above them like they had yesterday, but he knew they still had time. 

Savin managed a half-smile, his shoulders sagging as he shifted his legs, bending one knee and lowering the other. “There’s not an ‘us’ anymore, is there?” he murmured. Jazz snapped his head over to him, his eyes growing wide as Savin’s half-smile grew into an even darker, more desperate smirk. 

“Savin…” Jazz shook his head, tears stinging at his eyes. “Savin, don’t fucking do this — just, don’t –”

“But there isn’t, right?” Savin insisted, his own eyes welling up with tears. “How could you possibly want to be with me after that?”

“I love you,” Jazz said in a rush, lifting his head from his knees. “Savin, I love you –”

“But that’s not enough,” Savin said, shaking his head. “It shouldn’t be enough.”

Jazz bit his lip, effectively swallowing the rest of his words. He knew Savin was right. Knew that love wasn’t enough — not in a situation like this. Not after everything Savin had done. “We can work through this –”

“What if I get worse?” Savin pressed, taking in a shaky breath. “What if I do worse?”

“We can get you help –”

“There’s no help for me,” Savin said, cutting him off. “You need to get out. While you still can — before I — before I –” He sucked on his cigarette, as if it would steady him, make his next words easier to say. “I’m just going to hurt you again.”

“You don’t know that.”

“I do know that,” Savin growled, frowning. He released a heavy plume of smoke, his voice wavering as he spoke his next words. “Forget about me, Jazz. I’m not fucking worth it.”

“Isn’t that for me to decide?” Jazz asked, his own voice growing shrill as more tears threatened to spill over. “Savin, I know you — what happened yesterday? That wasn’t you.”

Savin let out a frustrated sigh, gripping his hair tightly in one hand. “Yes, it fucking was,” he spat, giving Jazz a pained glare. “How can you even say that? I nearly — I nearly –” Savin stopped again, taking in a hurried drag of his cigarette, his words becoming more agitated as he spoke. “Can you honestly say you want to stay with me, after that? I could have — I could have killed you, Jazz.” 

A shiver snaked its way down Jazz’s spine as he felt Savin’s hands on his shoulders all over again — felt them move to his neck. How he had thought Savin would inevitably squeeze — how he hadn’t been able to breathe, even if Savin’s fingers only wrapped around his throat loosely. Without thinking, he moved away from Savin. “I don’t know,” he whispered into his knees.

“Didn’t fucking think so,” Savin muttered. Jazz heard the grass shuffle under Savin’s feet as he stood up. “So how can you say there’s still an ‘us’?”

Jazz bit his lip. “I can’t.”

Daily Report & Snippet

You know how sometimes, you just struggle with a piece? One of my characters, Savin, tends to give me a lot of trouble when I’m writing something where he’s being a grade A asshole. He withholds dialogue from me, makes me believe that this dialogue I’m writing really happened this way when no, it’s actually a little out of order. He does it to make himself look better. It’s getting easier to recognize. Usually he just skips over dialogue entirely — that’s his biggest thing. 

So I’m working on Gray Morning, which is the book where his ass-itude is at its highest. And with the changes I intend to make in the (third) draft, it’s even worse than in previous versions. Before, I had him skirting the edge of becoming abusive. Now? Yeaaaah. He’s going to become abusive. I know what the Final Straw ends up being for Jazz and it’s really, really not pretty. I’m terrified of writing it. 

But it needs to be written. I saw the scene. Saw what he does to Jazz. And it’s awful, and I’m going to cry when I write it, because I love these two characters. I love their relationship. I love their dynamic. I just…love them.

And I have to write them both at their lowest points. Have to write them struggling to return to their individual levels of normal and okay and happy. And Savin…well, it’s a good thing therapists exist in the Tomorrow Trilogy ‘verse because he’ll need it, if he wants to ever have a relationship with Jazz again. 

This book is my favorite of the three. I have to do it justice. I’m afraid to write it out of order/without having fully revised drafts of Seize the Day and Surrender the Night, but it’s calling to me, and I need to listen. 

Hopefully it’ll help me reconcile the shit I’m currently going through.

Without further ado, here’s my snippet for the evening…

***

Savin snorted and rolled his eyes. “I’m not fucking ‘acting,’ Jasper,” he spat, narrowing his eyes at Jazz. Jazz kept his distance as Savin pulled his hand out of his pocket, pushing his glasses up the bridge of his nose. Wished his heart would stop feeling as though it would burst out of his chest any moment. “I told you, this is what I’ve always been like.”

“No, it’s fucking not,” Jazz snapped, grinding his heel into the ground. He ignored the pounding of his heart and the twisting in his stomach as he reached out for Savin’s shoulder. 

Savin turned sharply, grabbing Jazz’s wrist and ripping Jazz’s hand off his shoulder. “And how the hell would you know?” he growled, moving dangerously close to Jazz once again as he continued to hold him. “You’ve been totally head over heels for me since the moment we fucking met, thought I could do no fucking wrong.” He squeezed Jazz’s wrist. A jolt of pain caused Jazz to gasp and try to wrench his wrist free.

He couldn’t. He couldn’t get free. And they were alone — entirely fucking alone in the Palace Gardens, and with the way the clouds gathered overhead, no one would be coming outside anytime soon. Jazz’s mouth went dry as Savin gripped his chin with his free hand yet again.

“I’ve just been using you,” Savin said with a smirk. “Didn’t you once tell me you’d never trust a surgeon? Maybe you should have listened to your instincts.” 

Jazz shuddered as Savin’s fingers trailed along the edge of his jaw and down his neck, before both of Savin’s hands left his body entirely. Breathing became easier again, just for a moment, and he could no longer feel the way his heart hammered in his chest. “You’re not — you’re not like them.”

“You don’t know that for sure,” Savin said with a laugh. “All surgeons have to do a stint in the Orphanages, you know. Have to observe the experiments –”

“You’re lying!” Jazz shouted, glaring at Savin. He ignored how his cheeks suddenly felt wet — how all of his scars suddenly burned his skin. “If you — if you had fucking been involved in the Orphanages, you wouldn’t have even considered putting Danni through that! So stop fucking lying and stop trying to push me away — I’m not fucking going anywhere!”

“I don’t have to fucking try, Jasper –”

Stop calling me that!” Jazz bellowed. Savin blinked at him in confusion before snickering to himself, shaking his head. “That’s not my fucking name and you know it!”

“Legally, it is your name, Jasper,” Savin drawled, a wide grin sweeping across his face. “So get fucking used to me calling you that.”

Jazz watched in silence as Savin reached into his pocket and pulled out his pack of cigarettes. As Savin lit another, smoke clouded the air between them once more. His eyes focused on Jazz. They hardened, flashing dangerously in the red light of the burning cherry. “Don’t fucking worry — you won’t stay with me. You’ll leave, just like everyone else, and you won’t have to hear me call you that, ever again.”

He then took in a long drag, intentionally blowing the smoke into Jazz’s face. “Just you wait,” he murmured, turning on his heel and walking away.