Friday, September 30, 2016

Prologue Pre-Day One Monster University Rachael

Monster University Prologue
Katherine Rochholz
All Rights Reserved

            "I watch the monsters day in and day out. They never notice me the lowly human. But I watch them. I know them. I know their weaknesses, their strengths, their desires. They don't think anybody could ever figure it out. Ha! One only has to watch and listen to see what is really going on. Of course nobody watches. And nobody pays attention to the dying girl. The girl that is quiet and mousey, the girl that doesn’t say two words unless she is in class or spoken too. No nobody notices the dying girl. And because of that I can watch them. Study the monsters. And learn how to kill them. I don't have the strength to kill them. To get rid of the evil that plagues this town. But I hope that some day that humanity won't be lost to them. I hope that some day that someone will have the strength to take them down. But I watch. That is all I can do. Watch and record. And now I want to share this all with you. Share with you how I came to find out how things go bump in the night. And the stories of Monster University."
            Rachael sat and watched the new students. Rachael was a professional student. She choose this life because she was dying. She always knew she would die young. Terminal Genetic Conditions. She snorted. People ignored her. She was always quiet. Afraid of trying to find friends. Afraid of falling in love. Why do so when you are just going to leave them? Even her parents were distant after she was diagnosed at the age of eight. Two years later her very healthy baby brother and sister were born. They were the only ones she really cared about in life anyways. She always made sacrifices for her brother and sister. They were her life. She gave them everything that she refused to give anybody else. Because of that most people thought she was lost in her head a lot. Her books, her stories, her writings and musings. The fact that she refused to get a job even with her numerous degrees.  But really she was watching. Observing. Writing what she saw. And as the new students moved in and the town got a new bar, a new restaurant, new businesses... okay let's be honest it wasn't that strange. They were a college town and people moved in and out all the time. Sometimes families moved to be with their kids; sometimes people moved to try to make a go of a business in a college town that would have a lot of people for at least eight of the twelve months of the year. The bonus with this town is that it was very, very close to the larger towns in the state. And was considered a larger town itself. So even 'seasonal' businesses could make a go of things year round.
            One day Rachael was helping with the registrations. And she noticed some strange behavior in a group of kids. Now it was a college campus and strange and abnormal behavior were generally normal. But some of these kids were speaking as if they were misplaced out of time. They dressed as if they looked into a catalog and just choose to mimic what the model was wearing. So Rachael did what Rachael did best and observed them. She watched them every day and started to eavesdrop in on their conversations. She started to write down everything. She started to list everything. She discovered the truth not long after they all started. They never noticed her and talked around her. They were monsters! Vampires, werewolves, mummies, zombies, undead killers they were all real! What could she do?
            She knew she could never fight these monsters. Instead, she stayed in the shadows. She documented the monsters. She watched them day in and day out. She was dying and they killed to live. It made her made. It pissed her off.  She watched them kill to live. She watched them kill for sport. She watched them laugh about it. She watched them live life when she would die. She vowed somehow that people would know their stories. Their weaknesses and their powers and their rituals; so that one-day people could rise up and bring them down. She wrote these stories and hid them when she was finished. She followed them. She got to know them. She probably knew them better than they knew each other at times. This went on for months. She would put the pieces together. And being a woman who was used to being in the shadows she knew how to stay hidden.
            One day Rachael had just finished documenting the last of the monsters in town. She found the rituals they had to perform. Their weaknesses. And their strengths. She wrote them in the forms of short stories. She left the bank to be surrounded by the very monsters she had been hunting. She had messed up just a few days before. She had known it too. She had gotten so angry that one of the women was so bored with life that she was just going through the motions. That she kept doing her rituals only so she wouldn't have to pay the price of burning in hell. She yelled at her when she went to the bar to watch one of the last monsters. She had yelled that she wished that she could live. That she had the opportunity that the soul sucking monster she was had but she was dying. She messed up and quickly finished her documents. She had too. Her will stated to publish them. To publish them as fiction so that way people would read them. But those who were smart, those who could put the pieces together, that they would understand that they were while. And maybe one day hunt them down and destroy them all.
            Now she stood surrounded by them. Taken into a back alley into the city. She swallowed. She took a deep breath. She closed her eyes for she knew her time had come. She asked one thing. "Let my parents bury my body..." She whispered as her world went black.
“These are my words. My stories. Read them. Understand them. And watch for the monsters hidden within our society. If you are reading this. You know my story. A girl who died too young. Her genetic condition taking her quickly as she left her final piece of work in a safety deposit box to finish. These are my last words. I know when I leave this bank I will die. Be aware of the people around you. You never know which may hide a monster within. And if you are brave enough, strong enough, powerful enough... Please finish what I wanted to start and destroy them all...”

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Truth and Past Past and Present Excerpt

Truth and Lies Past and Present
Katy Lily Year 1
All Rights Reserved

Chapter Six: A Friend

The next three days passed in a blur- she played with Starlight, shopped with Sandra, read the school books or even sneak into the kitchen when Professor MacCathmhaoil and Antonio were in deep discussion about their new potion. Katy was had the time of her life and never wanted it to end. But before she knew it, it was the morning of the second and she was to go off to school.

Sandra had helped her pack the night before, still the morning was hectic, but even so the smiles never left their faces. By the time they teleported to the airport Katy had to try everything she could to not jump up and down with the excitement. She was dressed in her new uniform and cloak and carried her book bag full of everything she needed.

“Now Katy Lily you have to sit still on the plane, be polite and try not to spend all your money on the treats. Antonio used to have a problem with that, and would be out of money by the end of the first term. Your money is in your bag as is everything else. Now you don’t have to carry everything with you everywhere, but carry your money and only what you need for classes daily. Now when you land follow Antonio or Antonio Sr. one of them will show all the first years to your dorms. Now Starlight will be in the pet area of the plane, Antonio already took her back. She will be waiting for you in your dorm room. Just be yourself and everybody will love you like we do. And don’t show off that is rude, there are only ten new Fire children this year, it is a small group there are normally fifteen to twenty new Fires, but Antonio Sr. told me that there are seventy five earths this year were there is normally fifty, so everything evens out.”

“Sandra, come on, I can’t sit everybody until they are in line, and you will see Katy Lily in eleven short weeks.” Professor MacCathmhaoil stated, as he took Katy’s hand. “Come on Katy Lily.”

“Wait!” Sandra called and grabbed Katy and hugged her. “See you in March, behave and be safe.”

Katy hugged her back. “Thank you so much.” Katy said as she buried her head to hide the tears in her eyes.

“Come on now Katy Lily, before you know it you will be back home.” Professor MacCathmhaoil stated and again took Katy’s hand. They walked to the boarding center; Katy looked around and saw about sixty kids. Katy tensed, now worried that they wouldn’t like her. “Don’t worry, Katy Lily, as Sandra said, just be you and those who are meant to come into your life will, those who are not, well they won’t. Now go stand over there in that first line, those are the other first years.” Professor MacCathmhaoil pointed to the first line of kids.

Katy let go of Professor MacCathmhaoil’s hand and walked over to the line. She stood at the end of the line behind a boy with bright blond hair. He talked to his parents, his mother had black hair and was tall and slender, she had a timeless beauty about her, and the father was tall and as blonde as the son. He was very tall with the strangest colored eyes she had ever seen, they were bright neon orange, and he had scar that went down from the top of his forehead across his eye ending in a curve to his lips, they said their goodbyes. Katy tried not to listen as they said their goodbyes, but the boy was a little loud.

“Mom I am fine! Look! See all the other kids don’t have their parents hanging on them, look! See she is even by herself!” He said as he pointed to Katy.

“Fine, we are going now stay out of trouble, and I expect to see high grades on your report card in March.” The mother said as she hugged her son, she then took her husband’s hand and walked away.

The boy turned around to face Katy. “Hi, my name is Gaivan Hepburn.” He stated as he held out his hand.

Katy took and shook his hand. Katy took his appearance in, it was really too perfect, he looked like a child model with his square face, almond shaped green eyes, straight perfect nose, and perfect ruby red lips. “My name is Katherine Fitz but everybody calls me Katy.”

“Nice to meet you Katy! Looks like just ten of us this year. My dad is Fire and my mom is Spirit. My older brother is Fire too, but he is a sixth year so he gets to teleport to the town outside of the school, and then he takes the carriages up. They don’t let anybody teleport into the school, but man wait until we can do it! Do you have any siblings? What are your parents?” Gaivan seemed to be as excited as Katy, but he couldn’t hide it as well as she could.

“I was told my mom was Earth. My friend Antonio told me. She died three years ago. He also told me that my father is an Air.”

“Wow! You are rare! It is almost always Fire children who grow up to have Fire children! Do you not live with your dad?”

“No, I don’t know who he even is; I have been staying with Professor MacCathmhaoil and his family.” Katy had questions about her father, but each time she mentioned her dad the MacCathmhaoils’ smiles died and were replaced with a face of distaste.

“Wow.” He had a shocked look on his face. “Oh look we are boarding hope to see you on the plane!”

“You too!” With that Gaivan faced forward and then started to move forward to begin to board the plane.

Katy got up to the doors of the plane, and saw Antonio and Professor MacCathmhaoil and waved. Antonio walked forward after all ten of the first years were standing around them.

“Okay first years this way please I will show you to your seats. The plane was much larger on the inside then it appeared on the outside. He led them to a group of sets that were separated by curtains, near the front of the plane. And sat them in groups of two within the five sections, each section had two cushy chairs and a table each. He sat Katy with Gaivan close to the front. “Okay, behave; we will be patrolling the plane at regular intervals. This is an eight hour flight, and we will land at about six just in time for the first dinner of the school year.” With that Antonio walked back though the curtains.

Katy looked around and saw that there were three other girls and six boys in the first year Fire group.

“I can’t wait for the treat cart to come!” Gaivan said.

“Does it have things like at Kandi’s Sweets?” Katy was happy that she had someone her age to speak too, and for once she felt like she could have friends.

“Yep, good stuff, I have to limit my pocket money though, after all this has to last most of the year, as I don’t get any more spending money until my birthday which is August 14th by the way.” Gaivan said with a smile. “When is yours?”

“December 20th.”

“Oh… you just had your birthday! What did you get?”

“Umm…” Katy thought about how to answer this, she had never gotten anything for a birthday before, except a doll if the shelter had one, even when her mother was alive there wasn’t any money to get anything. Katy thought about it for a moment and decided that honesty would be the best route to go. “I didn’t get anything until the 29th I lived alone on the streets of New York. But that is okay, on the 29th I found out I was a witch and went shopping and got all my school supplies. I even have a kitten now, called Starlight, and I found out I am going to take all these cool classes. And I got a topaz necklace, and the best part besides Antonio’s family was my kitten choosing me and getting my wand and staff!” Katy was so excited that she talked a lot more then she should have, maybe.

“Wow! Man that sucks about having to live on the streets, but at least you don’t have to anymore. I got my wand and staff on my birthday, but I couldn’t hang on to it until a few days ago. I got my crystal as well, but in ring form, it is a blood agate, very cool, it is called the Fire stone. And I love my Cedar wand and staff! They are both a dark brown color with black tips in the shape of a flame. See!” He said as he pulled his wand out of his bag. “What are yours?”

“I have a black Holly wand with a blood red tip, and I have a white Yew staff with a blood red tip.” Katy said quite proudly as she pulled her Holly wand out of her bag, she wanted to show off her wand as well.

“Wow! What classes are you taking? I am taking History, Spells, Potions, Creatures, Teleportation, Thaumaturgy, Telepathy, Languages, Healing, Symbols, Transfiguration, Magical Defense, Pyrokinesis, Herbology, Arts, Elements, Divination, Necromancy, Archeology, and Astronomy. I hope to be a Guardian one day.” Gaivan said proudly.

Katy didn’t know what Guardians were but they sounded important. “I am taking almost the same as you, except where you have Symbols I have Martial Arts, and where you have Arts I have Mythology. What are Guardians?”

“I forgot you haven’t lived in this world, they are like our police officers, and they catch dark witches and warlocks. My dad is one; my mom is a medicine woman for creatures. Like a veterinarian, but magical.”

“Cool!” Katy had heard of so many different careers, but she didn’t know what she would to do after school, did she need to know?

“Most people don’t know what they want to be until at least their fifth year, because we get to choose what classes to drop at the end of the year. My brother wants to be a medicine man, so he is taking Healing, Potions, Languages, Spells, Magical Defense, Herbology, Pyrokinesis, Elements, Creatures, and Alchemy. I would have taken Divination over Alchemy though, or Thaumaturgy. Alchemy is all about power for oneself I feel.”

“Wow! Sandra is a medicine woman, she took some days off to stay with me the last couple of days, and she said she was glad to have some time off, as the hospital is always busy with one thing or another. She told me about this guy whose wife cursed him or something and he came in with tentacles all over his head and eyes on his feet.”

“Whoa… I would have loved to see that!”

The conversation stayed mostly on classes, and the strange things Sandra had told her about the last couple of days. They didn’t break until the treat cart came. Gaivan was very fond of the sugar wands and bought bunches of those, Katy, however, only bought one sugar wand and a jumbo bag of animal gummies, she found out that if she tapped them with her wand first they will act like the animal for a bit. There were gummies running all across the table when Professor MacCathmhaoil walked up.

“Ah, I see you got more gummies Katy. Hello Gaivan, how are you doing?”

“Great Professor, are we almost there yet it seems we have been sitting still for hours!”

“Almost another couple of hours, then we will land. I will make an announcement before we land so everybody can get out their warlocks’ and witches’ hats. Small lot of you this year, but that is okay the Fire house has always been small. Only 161 total this year! Earth is up there though 535 this year, 75 first years. 215 for Spirit, 376 for Water, and 427 for Air, so 1714 students at school this year, plus some graduates training under masters, thankfully we got a few new professors as well. Well, off to check the second years. Goodbye.” With that Professor MacCathmhaoil left their section.

Somehow Katy knew that the information that Professor MacCathmhaoil gave them was for her benefit. “Wow so many! How many schools are there?” Katy asked Gaivan.

Gaivan swallowed the gummy he was eating then he answered. “Well there are seven major magical schools, one per continent, ours is the largest, followed by Europe. The smallest is Antarctica, only like 150 kids total. The other schools aren’t really like ours though, except maybe Asia, the others get summers off and go a full nine months only. My brother did an exchange program his fourth year. I might do one but not until after my fifth. My brother was studying for weeks trying to make up what he needed to know for his exams when he came back. Of course there are smaller schools, mostly for parents who don’t want their kids far from home, or some parents home school.”

“Wow, you can really take classes at other schools?” Katy was fascinated by the idea of learning from other witches and warlocks, but it sounded like a lot of basic stuff is missed when you do an exchange program. She would have to find out more.

“Yeah, it is nice and all, but with all the exams we have to take at the end of the year it is really hard when they don’t teach as much at other magical schools, except maybe Asia but I don’t really want to go to Asia they even have classes on Fridays!”

“Do we ever get to meet people from other schools? Do they come here?”

“Almost never, I hear there is an exchange student from Europe in the fifth years Earth class.”

“Do you think the classes are going to be super hard?”

“My brother says the first term is kind of boring, lots of papers, no real practice, have to get the rules down first, but he didn’t take the same classes I am, he said his favorite was Alchemy, but that class seems really boring, he always had his nose in a book. Speaking of books have you looked at some of ours? I haven’t I figure there is time enough for that in school.”

“Yeah I looked though a few of them but I only have had mine for a couple of days, they seem really neat to me, I was reading in our transfiguration class about the laws governing turning non-living objects into living objects and vice versa, it was quite interesting.”

“Yeah, yeah, hey we should make the lion gummy try to eat the gazelle gummy. Here you tap the lion” Gaivan said as he handed her the lion gummy; as he took the gazelle gummy “and I will tap the gazelle.” There was a huge smile on his face and he tapped the gummy.

Katy sat down the lion gummy and did the same, and the lion chased after the gazelle, but they never left the table. They laughed, and had a great time, as they made all the animals run around, always chased by a bear or lion or even a tyrannosaurus-rex! When the announcement was made they would land in ten minutes and to make sure they were in uniform.

Gaivan opened his bag and pulled out his warlock’s hat, and then tapped the gummies he had brought to life, and swept them into his bag.

Katy pulled out her witch’s hat, stopped her gummies, and then put them back in the baggie they came in, and put them in her bag. She placed her hat on her head and looked around and smiled. “This is really real isn’t it?”

“Yep, man, I hope we don’t have to go to our dorms first, I am starving!” Gaivan stated as he chewed on a sugar wand.

“Well, we do have our bags, but we should be able to sit them on the floor next to us until after dinner right? Didn’t your brother tell you how it works?”

“No, I really don’t want to go to the dorms first because we have to listen to the rules of the dorm when we do, I would rather be stuffed with foody goodness.” Gaivan said as they stood up. The plane had just landed and an announcement came over the intercom that advised them to line up.

“Well, won’t we be tired after supper and not want to listen?” Katy sure thought so, but Gaivan looked at her like she was crazy.

“Well, maybe, but normally we have classes after dinner, but today had been a little hectic. But nah, I think after dinner would be better.” Gaivan said with a smile.

Antonio came up to the first year quarters. “Okay first years follow me, we are going to the dorms first and showing you where you will be sleeping, then we will go down to dinner.” With that Antonio started to walk and all of the first years followed after him.

Katy heard Gaivan sigh, but ignored it so she could look at everything she could lay her eyes on, she was fascinated, the old stone walls, the large wooden doors, the towers to the right and left. The one to the right shot straight into the air and looked like a flame; the one to the left did the same except it looked more like a set of mountains. How nobody knew about this place she did not know. They walked up to a center tower which was much wider than the others, and walked in.

“Now this is the main building, the school, dining hall, everything like that is here in this tower. Now please first years follow me.” Antonio walked to the right then turned right again. They walked up to a large Hawthorne door. Antonio tapped his wand to it, and ushered the first years in to the dorm. “Now only those with Fire wands can get in, you just tap your wand to the door and it will allow you in. Now the boys are upstairs on the top floor to the right and the girls to the left. Go put your bag on your bed, you can unpack later. Your pets have already been brought up.”

Katy and Gaivan walked up the stairs to the top floor, and then divided when they got to the top. Katy walked into her dorm room, followed by the other three girls. The place was huge with four large canopy beds, but the posts were shaped like flames, and they stretched to the middle where a Salamander statue sat. The bed spread was a blood red, and the curtains a deep dark orange. There was a night stand to one side and a dresser to the other, there were four large desks at the end of each bed. Each with a chair, which again looked to be standing on flames, with a Salamander craved into it. Each dresser, stand, desk, chair, and bed, looked to be made of the same wood each of their wands were made in. Katy’s was black with red, the person next to hers was deep brown and white, and the others had white with brown, and brown with black. Katy wanted to continue to look around, when Starlight ran up to her. Katy dropped her bag on her bed and picked up her kitten. Starlight’s bed was next to Katy’s and her basket on top of Katy’s dresser. The litter box was nowhere to be seen, but Antonio said they took care of things like that. But her food dish and milk bowl were by Katy’s desk. Katy took a moment to dig into her bag and grab Starlight a treat. Katy gave her a hug and set her down on her bed, gave her the treat and then turned to walk back down to Antonio. But before she could do more then take a couple of steps she was stopped by the other three girls as they blocked her way.

“Hello, I am Christina Lee” said the girl in the middle she was tall for the age of nine, and one could tell she had Asian ancestry, she had blonde hair though, and green eyes. “These are my friends Rae Rhoades and Kay Fredricks. We grew up together, you are an outsider. You can do as you wish of course, but leave us alone.” With that she flipped her hair and walked out the door followed by the other two girls.

Katy walked down stairs and there was Gaivan jumping up and down. “Katy, Katy! Did you see them? The beds, are they not the coolest? The desk the chair the dresser, all of mine are made of Cedar and look like my wand. Isn’t that the coolest?”

“Yes, mine too, but mine is made of Holly. The other girls don’t seem to like me though.” She told Gaivan everything that was said and how they acted.

“Yeah Lee’s family thinks they are so much better, they are super rich, and of course don’t have a single non-magical person in their family line. Most do of course if we didn’t we would be as inbred as the English.” Gaivan said with a laugh. “Don’t worry about them they are not too bright. They will just act stuck up and will not to talk to anybody they believe are beneath them, they will act like royalty but never do anything but strut around the school.”

Just then Antonio raised his voice, “Okay, kids settle down, we are going to go down to dinner, now we all sit together as a house. Your house is your family, anyone here will help you if you need it, they will be there for you, and they will treat you like family. Now follow me first years.”

Again Katy walked down with her class, down the stone walls, but this time when they got to the main hallway they went straight. Katy kept trying to take everything and looked out the windows. On the left side there was a tower shaped in spirals that shot up in the air. On the right there was a large lake, but there was a stairwell that went below the lake. And straight ahead there was another tower shaped like a large infinity sign that was covered in bright jewels. Katy was fascinated and excited about her new life. Just down the hall there was a large room which is where Antonio ushered them into.

“This is the dining hall. As you see there are five sections. Fire, over this way please.” They turned left and then left again into the section in the southeast corner. There were many tables, each with different number of chairs. “This is your table; it will always be your table. Please sit down. The headmaster will say a few words, and then the feast will begin.” Antonio left them and went and sat at the table in the center of the room, where, Katy could see his father and what seemed like the rest of the professors, were seated.

Gaivan grabbed Katy’s hand and pulled her to the round table and sat near the corner. “This is so cool. We can see everybody from here Katy!” Gaivan said as they sat down.

Katy could see what he was talking about they could really see everybody, in fact there was a man who just stood up, he had a long black beard, and long black hair, both neatly breaded. His eyes were almost black; he looked older than the rest of them but young enough to be still called middle aged. Katy thought he looked familiar, and as if her thoughts about him had caught his attention he looked directly at her, looked into her eyes for a moment, his eyes seemed to widen for a moment but before Katy could be sure, he turned away and cleared his voice, before he started to speak.

“Welcome first years! Welcome back to another year, for the rest of you! Just a few announcements, remember that while the apprentices are not professors, they still deserve your respect, they can also give detentions and take away privileges from your house. Note again there is a size limit to the pets you bring to school with you, if it does not fit on the planes that come to town then it is not allowed at the school, please keep them at home. Again a reminder please do not stake your vampire professors, unless of course they are attacking you which I assure you will never happen while I am in charge here. Now First years your house leader or their apprentice will read you the rules when you go back tonight. And classes start tomorrow, please follow your schedules, and first years if you get lost don’t be afraid to ask. How? Just tap your schedule with your wand and say “Show me the way.” Now everybody please enjoy your feast! And welcome again!” With that the man sat down, and piles of food appeared on all the tables.

Gaivan did not stop to ponder the words like Katy did, so when she looked at him his plate was already full of food. Katy smiled grabbed a couple of chicken legs and mashed potatoes, and filled a bowl of strawberries.

“Katy do you think they will have a lot of choices at breakfast?” Gaivan asked.

“I don’t know; you would know more than I would. But this is really the best.” Katy said as she reached for more strawberries, finally she felt at home and secure that her new life was not a dream.

They continued the rest of their meal in silence, and when it was over, Antonio came over and led them back up to the dorms. They stood around him while he listed off some rules. “Now you must be back in your dorm by midnight every night, even on the weekends and holidays if you are staying at the school. You must respect other students; you must share the common room, no loud music, no turning their desks into animals, or making their homework disappear, etc. You break the rules you will get detention. Now you can do what you want for the rest of the night, but remember you have classes early in the morning.” With that Antonio left the dorm.

Gaivan and Katy looked at each other, and then Gaivan grabbed Katy’s hand. “Come on I want to show you my dorm!” They ran up the stairs and turned to the right. They walked into Gaivan’s dorm and it was exactly like the girls dorm but there were six beds, so it was a little larger. Gaivan dragged her to his section. “Look! See just like my wand!”

“So cool!” Katy couldn’t agree more, she was about to say something when a small tiny brownish monkey jumped on her shoulder, which caused Katy to jump. “Umm… is this your monkey?”

Gaivan looked over smiled, then grabbed the monkey. “He really isn’t a monkey he is a marmoset, his name is Monkey though.” He said as he placed his marmoset on the bed and tossed it a treat. “He won’t get much bigger than this he is eight inches.” Gaivan said proudly.

“He is cool! You should come and see my kitten Starlight. Come on!” Katy grabbed his hand and dragged him across the hall. Once in the room she dropped his hand ran to her bed and grabbed Starlight and held her out to Gaivan.

“Man! She is black, she is so small. Did you say she choose you?” Gaivan sat down on Katy’s bed and held onto Starlight.

Katy sat down as well. “Yep, jumped right on to the table and told me her name was Starlight and I was hers. Antonio called her a familiar.”

“Wow you are lucky! My mom has a familiar! Hers is an owl though. Always helping her, and bringing her things.”

“Well I am sure Starlight will help both of us in school.” Katy said with a smile. Katy jumped up and grabbed her bag. “Man we have to unpack still. I wish I could leave everything in my bag, but that would look strange digging through everything, looking for a quill and a jar of ink.” Katy said as she took out her boxes with her uniforms in it. She took each box and emptied it to her dresser. Then she took out her parchment, quills and ink bottles out and placed them on her desk. Then her books, and all her other supplies, and soon her bag was empty. Gaivan stayed on her bed and just laid there lazily as he watched Katy organize her things and he petted Starlight as he chewed on yet another sugar wand.

“Hey do you think you could help me unpack, I am not very good with the whole, neat thing but you seem to be a little anal about having everything just so.” He said with a smile as Katy straightened everything to look neat and even. She had never had her own space before and she wanted everything to be perfect.

“Sure, I am going to put the stuff I need for classes in my bag first though.” She said as she grabbed her books for her first day of classes, as well as her gloves for potions and creatures and her potions set, and the items she needed for potions, such as her cauldron. She also put in a martial arts uniform. “Okay, I am done.” She said as she placed in a stack of parchment, a few quills, and a couple of ink bottles and, of course, her staff in her bag. “I can’t wait to learn how to do all this with magic!”

“Great!” Gaivan said and jumped, he placed Starlight on the bed. “You can help me now!” He said with a laugh, as they left Katy’s room, the other girls hadn’t come up yet.

When they reentered Gaivan’s room all the other boys were up there unpacking. They all turned to look at her when she came in. She walked over to Gaivan’s bed, and started to help him unpack, soon everything was as neat and ready to go as her own things.

“Man, Katy you are a life saver, I would have just thrown everything around and lost it.” Gaivan said as he collapsed on the bed. Just then the other boys walked over. Katy kept her eye on them.

“Hi” said one whose eyes were a hazel, and had light brown hair that hung to his shoulders. “My name is Oscar Wright.” For just a moment Katy thought his eyes had flashed red, but when she blinked and looked again they were back to hazel again, and she pushed the thought out of her mind, she thought it must have just been the light.

Katy shook his hand. “Hi, I am Katy Fitz.”

“Hi Katy, I am Russell Kelly, this is Rory O’Hara, Riordon Flynn, and Randall Sommer. We are all cousins.” They looked it, they all had ginger hair with blue eyes, round faces and freckles across their noses.

She shook each person’s hand as she was introduced. “It is nice to meet you all.” Katy said with a smile.

The one who was introduced as Rory spoke up “Gaivan says that your parents weren’t Fire is that true?”

“And that you lived on the streets?” Asked Riordon.

“Umm…” Katy looked at them they had smiles on their faces and seemed truly interested. “Yeah, my mom was Earth, she passed away three years ago, and my dad is Air but I don’t know who he is, and yeah I lived on the streets.”

“Wicked cool!” Said Russell, “Well, not about living on the street, but about your parents not being Fire.”

“My mom is Water and so is my sister, but my dad and I are Fire.” Said Randall “Of course my sister is a traitor, she dates an Air, Fires and Airs don’t get along, since you don’t know your father you are cool.”

“Oh, Antonio told me Airs and Fires don’t like each other.” Katy said as she sat down on the edge of Gaivan’s bed. “Why?”

“Don’t really know, just never got along.” Said Gaivan as he chewed on yet another sugar wand, “It is just like Earth and Water don’t get along, nobody really knows. But Earth and Water relationships are okay; their hate is not as bad as Fire and Air. There is a myth, or a story mind you, that happened a really long time ago, like over one hundred thousand years ago, when non magical people were just really forming, that an Air Prince betrayed a Fire Princess and there has been heated feelings between the two elements since. Of course they say it will end once something major happens. Once the ‘chosen one’ comes and destroys an evil that shall destroy not only our world but the world of the non-magical humans as well.” Gaivan said, he even did in the air quotation marks when he said chosen one.

“Wow.” Katy really couldn’t say much everything was so new to her; and a lot was being thrown at her. She was worried about her classes more than ever now, even more then after she talked to Gaivan on the plane, and if the classes were a lot to take in, how would she deal with her classes and how would she find her place in this new world, let alone the fact that now she had to deal an ancient hatred against her ancestors. She didn’t know them, her family, but it felt wrong to flat out hate them. When she turned her mind back around to the boys, they were talking about something else, she thought she heard Eleball. “What are you talking about?”

“Eleball. It is our sport. It is short for Elemental Ball, but we call it Eleball. It is the world’s best game. It is kind of like football, but we fly as well as run the ball and can use magic to stop the other players, or we can physically tackle them. But we can’t use magic to move the ball. The field is two miles long and three miles wide. You keep possession of the ball until you score or it is intercepted. There are eleven people on each team. The ball is round and made of the elements, the element in control changes with each person who touches it. Makes it very hard to steal so you have to be very good, mostly it is fifth years and up on the teams in school. There are ten games a year; each house plays the others once.”

“Wow! When is the first game?” Kay was suddenly as excited as the boys.

“Well, there is one in March, then the following three terms there is three a month. Of course the best team professionally is the Freedom Warriors. That is the North American team. There is one team per continent just like the schools. See, here is a book about them, you can borrow it, I would have rather a hat, instead of a book, but mom is all about education.” Gaivan said as he rolled his eyes, and handed Katy the book, it was titled Freedom Warriors and Their History.

“Thanks!” Katy made a mental note to read it that weekend. Katy looked around for a clock but couldn’t find one. “What time is it?” She asked, as she made a mental note to buy a watch.

“Oh,” Gaivan looked down at his watch “11:30. Man, we better get ready for bed.”

“Yep,” Katy said as she stood up. She said good bye to the boys then went across the way to her own dorm, the other girls were not back yet, so she dropped the book Gaivan handed her on her desk and went to get ready for bed. When she came back from her shower a half hour later, the other girls were already in bed. She climbed in and fell asleep.

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Monster University

Monster University
Where Grades Aren't Your Only Worry...
A set of connected short stories
31 Days
31 Short Stories
Starting 10/01/2016

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Monster University Short Story Series

I am going to update & redo Drake & Frank of Monster University & re-release starting 10/01
31 Short Stories
31 Days

Monday, September 26, 2016

The Monster Within

The Monster Within
Katherine Rochholz
All Rights Reserved

I flip the channels on the television. I am sick of all these black and white monster movies. They were big in the 1940’s. Now that was a time to live in for a monster. They started to romanticize us; I had a blast. I miss those days. Where I could at least be myself; until they started to romanticize the monsters, we were hunted. And a hunt is how I ended up the monster I am. This is my story.

“Henry,” my wife called out to me. “Lord Baron is at the door.”

I looked up from my journal. I couldn’t stand that man, but he was the leader of our little group of monster hunters. “Coming, love.” I stood up from my desk and threw my journal in the drawer locking it.

“Henry! Old man, how are you?” Lord Baron greeted me as I walked into the drawing room.

“Jacob.” I said in a way of greeting. “What has caused the pleasure of your company?”

“Heard about a monster or two, werewolves I think. I am not sure if it is only one or two, but it seems like a lot of death for just one.”

“They are nasty things to hunt during the full moon cycle. Do we have an idea who their mortal host is?”

“No.” Jacob stated simply as the maid set down our tea tray, a tray I knew would sit untouched, but it was the proper thing to offer.


“How about a nice brandy?”

I knew he would ask, so I walked to the bar and poured him a good portion. “Here you are.” I stated and sat down across from him.

“So when do you want to start the hunt?”

“Tomorrow night is the first night of the full moon.”

“Fine. You contact the others?”

“Of course. How is that little project to try to increase our strength going?”

“I am going to test it on myself later.”

“Shouldn’t you try it on a servant first?”

“Should the servants really have that much strength if it works?” I said, though I was a fair boss and didn’t believe my help was below myself, I didn’t want to endanger their lives, however Lord Baron thought otherwise.

“Fair point. Let me know how it goes.” Jacob finished his brandy and stood up to leave.

I stood with him. “Jacob, until tomorrow.” I stated and showed him out.

“What did he want?” My wife asked.

“Love, just business. We are going to have a meeting tomorrow night. I won’t be back until late.”

“I hate your meetings.”

“I know, but they must happen.” I kissed my wife’s check and retreated back to my study.

I pulled out my journal once more and started to look over my notes. I had brewed the formula yesterday, and let it set. It was a moment of truth. A moment that would have defined our hunting expeditions.

I drank it. At first nothing happened and then a burning sensation traveled through me. It threw me to the ground; I thought I for sure was going to die. But I didn’t. I stood up. Nothing about me had changed. I was upset. I tried to pick up the desk but could not; that meant the last three months were for naught. I would have to start from scratch again another day.

The next night I took my horse and rode off to meet up with Jacob and the rest of the group of hunters. When I got there they were all there looking quite worried, the town had already been destroyed by the monsters. The moon wasn’t even up fully yet. What type of being were we dealing with? “What happened?” I asked.

“We do not know. The moon isn’t even high in the sky.” Jacob responded.

“What are we dealing with?”

“A monster of the likes we have never seen before.” An older man came up to us.

“Lord Earle.” I said in way of a greeting.

“Henry, my man. Did your potion work?”

“Richard, it did not I am afraid. It is back to the beginning.”

“Pity. I have a feeling we could have used it with this beast.”

“Well, let’s get to it.” Jacob stated and mounted his horse.

We rode in silence. It seemed like days, but only hours before we heard the howl. We knew that it was only a matter of time before it was upon us. We jumped off our horses and prepared for the beast. We waited only moments but it felt an eternity.

The beast came into the clearing, and I gasped. It was huge. It was larger than any wolf we had hunted before; about three times the size! Its teeth dripped with blood, it walked on hind legs like a man, but was quick. Before I could figure out what had happened he had Byron and Richard both on the ground at its feet. Their throats were ripped from them, and they chocked on their own blood.

I was upset. So upset that the feeling of death came over me, just like the day before when I had taken my potion. The next thing I knew was blackness. When I awoke the next day I lay in a pool of blood. The bodies of all the hunters as well as a new body, which must have been the wolf, lay dismembered and scattered around me. There was blood on my hands, in my mouth, and in my hair, all round me there was blood.

I stood and discovered I was naked. I quickly grabbed a blood stained coat and ran. The horses were even killed. I could do nothing but run. I ran all the way back to town. I ran to my house and threw myself into my study. I had no idea what happened. No clue but I knew I would be labeled a coward. Because I had lived.

I stayed in my office for days. I only came out to eat with my wife. Soon Lord Baron’s nephew and heir came to see me. I answered the door. “Lord Baron.” I said as a greeting.

“Lord Jekyll.” He came into my foyer, and removed his coat. “I came to talk about what happened to my uncle. I take it you were injured which is why you haven’t came out with the rest of the hunters.”

“Yes. Please come with me to the drawing room. We can discuss it there.” I walked into the drawing room and right to the bar. I poured both of us a large brandy. “Here you are Lord Baron.”

“Thank you Sir.” He said and accepted the drink; he took a large drink before speaking.

I sat down across from him and waited. I was unsure of what he would say.

“I will get to the point. You are the only one that lived. What happened?”

“The wolf was larger than any we had ever seen. It was about three times the size. It walked upon hind legs. It attacked. I ran to attack it, upon seeing Jacob and Richard killed. The next thing I knew I woke up in a pool of blood.”

“Why did it let you live?”

“We were able to kill it somehow. I don’t know when or how.”

“It is interesting that you were the only one that lived. Especially since you tested your concoction on yourself that night my uncle came to tell you about the hunt.”

“I don’t like you implication.”

“You don’t have to coward.”

“I am no coward.” My blood began to boil. I, again, felt death upon me. Before I knew it my world had gone black, the last thing I heard was a scream.

I came too just hours later. I lay quite nude in my drawing room. Blood and body parts all around me once more, and worse my wife stood in the doorway. “Love?”

“Mr. Edward Hyde says to congratulate you on finding a woman such as me.” She stated.

“Mr. Hyde?”

“He said that was his name. The monster you became.”

“I… A monster?”

“Yes. You killed Lord Baron when he called you a coward.”


“Well, you did not this Mr. Hyde did. But he is really you…”

I just stared at my wife. At that moment I knew that I had made a mistake. In an attempt to play god, God had turned me into the very thing I hated… A monster…

“We will return after these messages.” The announcer states bringing me back to the present. I sigh. My love had long since passed. She had lived a normal mortal life, by my side. She loved me no matter the monster I became. She was the last person to truly accept Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde as one in the same.

I turn off the television. It is playing the 1940’s version of the movie based upon a romanticized version of my life. My friend Sir Stevenson had written my life as a short story and found his fame. I sigh and know that one day Mr. Hyde will be back and there was nothing I can do to stop him… Nothing I want to do to stop him… I have finally embraced the monster within…

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Sleeping Death

Sleeping Death
All Rights Reserved
Katherine Rochholz 

            Once upon at time there was a vain Queen and King, they had a child who was as pretty as can be.  They hired three witches to bless the child with beauty, grace and pose.
But there was a fourth witch that was not invited.  She came to the christening and gave this proclamation.  “This beauty, Briar Rose, shall have her beauty, grace and pose, as long as her heart beats within her chest.  The moment her heart stops beating, she will lose all three.  Her body however shall never die!”  The witch then bent and kissed the sleeping beauty on the head.
She turned on her heel and disappeared from the castle, she left to ponder who words, what they meant.  The Queen bent and picked up her child; they found the note left by the witch.  “Briar Rose shall prick her finger on a spinning wheel on her eighteenth birthday.  That prick shall stop her heart from beating, bringing about the curse I have placed upon her.”
The Queen and King were worried about the curse, though they did not know exactly what it meant; did not know how her heart would stop beating but her body would not die?  So they sent the baby to live with the three witches they had hired to make sure of their daughter’s beauty, grace and pose. 
The years went by and the young Briar Rose grew up with a normal childhood, never once told that she was the heir to a mighty kingdom, which meant that one day she shall be Queen.  She grew up as Twila, the ever loving peasant girl, who had the beauty of a queen.
On the morning of her eighteenth birthday she went upon her day as she normally would have; she got up and picked flowers, feed the animals, and went about her day.  The witches, that were in charges of raising her, went to her after lunch as they needed to fit her for her new gown.  One that was fit for a princess; as she was now of age, she would now go home and become the princess the land needed, it was time to return to the world of royalty.
They did the fitting and left to get some much needed supplies for the birthday celebration that was to happen that night.  After all it would be her last night with them and they felt the depressed at that very thought.
Well they were gone; the other witch took her opportunity to lead young Twila to the spindle of her curse.  With a bit of magic, she had Twila follow a small bird to the spindle that spun on its own accord, it weaved a string that was black as sin.
The witch used the bird, and spoke in a soft tone, she instructed Twila to prick her finger on the spindle needle.  Which, of course, the young princess did, without hesitation.  In that very moment her heart stopped beating.  She fell to the floor.  The three witches appeared instantly, but were too late to stop what had happened.  Instead they froze time, they froze her and the kingdom in an endless sleep, that could only be undone by true loves first kiss.  So they protected the sleeping kingdom until they could find a cure for the curse on the young princess, however they never found one.  For many years, many decades, the kingdom was frozen in time.  Many princes to come ‘save’ the sleeping princess, however the witches prevented anybody from reaching the sleeping princess, thus they left her in the frozen state.
One day a prince from a far away kingdom heard of the sleeping kingdom and thought of the land to be gained from such a union.  So he set out across he many lands to get to the kingdom.  Once there he faced the three witches, the first put up a field of knifes and spikes, that had to be carefully navigated, and could not be torn down.  However this Prince, upon his birth, had been blessed by witches of his own kingdom, with the smarts, and a sword that could cut down any object within its path.  He cut through the maze of blades, and made it to the second task set froth by the witches.
He reached a room of fire.  The flames would burn through anything.  The witches were sure that the prince would never make it through.  However, also upon his birth, he was given a shield that would protect him from any supernatural danger.  It allowed him to cross the flames of the witches’ passions.  It allowed him to face the third and final task.
A monster of the worse sorts, part dragon, part Griffin, colored the deepest of blues with eyes the color of a sunset.  A creature that was sure to kill the prince.  The prince knew he would defeat it.  He was gifted strength, brains and pride upon his birth.  He fought though the flames of the creature dodged the spikes upon its tail, evaded the razor sharp teeth that tried to chop down on him, but in the end his sword met the creature’s heart, and it turned to dust.
The three witches looked on in shock as he stood by the bedside of the cursed Princess Briar Rose and he leaned down and kissed her.  The moment the kiss ended, she awoke.  But she was no longer human, her pale skin, had long ago shrunk.  Her beauty she once held was gone; in its place was death.  The prince’s kiss had broken the spell which froze time, but not the curse.
The Princess opened her eyes, she got up and then Briar Rose did the unthinkable.  She attacked the prince!  She bit him.  He stabbed her with his sword, but still she came at him.  He ran from her, and fell down the stars and broke his neck.  The witches waited, their breaths held.  They waited to see what would happen now as the undead Briar Rose started to move.  Her beauty, her grace, and her pose all gone from her once lovely soul.  She did not grow up royal; yet she is the one that paid for the sins of her parents.
The witches watched as the prince’s body also started to move.  The curse had extended itself to her victims.  The witches watched as Briar Rose set the neck of her undead prince and they went off together, to wreak havoc among their kingdom.
The Queen locked herself in her chambers and cried out in pain as she watched her kingdom become the kingdom of the undead.  She cried out to the witch that placed the curse upon her daughter, the one they didn’t invite because of her views of the world.  “Hekate!  Come to me!  I beg you!  Come to me!  Make me a deal!”  The Queen needed to stop the pain of her soul, the pain of seeing her daughter as a zombie.  Her soul was drowning in the pain. 
“You called Queen Emma?”  Hekate appeared.
“Make me a deal!  Anything!  Reverse your curse!  Allow my daughter a life full of happy ever afters.”
“You put you and your family above your people.  You hired witches to bless your children, though you know it curses another!  You make sure your children know all the comforts of life, while your people go hungry, while they freeze, they know all the hardness and pain, while you and your children know only comfort and joy!  And you have the nerve to ask me to reverse the curse?  To reset time?”
“Yes!  Please I will do anything!”  The Queen begged.
“Fine.  I will reset time on these conditions and these alone!  One, the child will be raised far from you.  She shall be raised a poor child, that way when she is queen she will be fair.  Two, no longer will you hire the witches to bless the children of royalty.  Instead each child born in the kingdom will be bestowed one blessing and one hardship to overcome.  And last but not least, your life for hers.  You shall die in her place.  It is the only way I can reverse time.  I need to balance the universe.  I took her soul, her life, so yours will be the price to save hers.”  Hekate said with a sneer, sure the Queen would not take the offer.
The Queen looked out the window and watched as her daughter took a spoon and scooped out a heart from some poor soul and watched as she ate it.  She could not bear this pain.  Death would be welcomed for a chance her daughter would live.  “Deal.”
Hekate was in shock.  “So be it!”  Hekate snapped her fingers and time reversed, the conditions now set in blood and soul.
“King Richard!  You have a beautiful baby girl!  Briar Rose!  She was gifted with grace, but cursed with the inability to sing.”
“Fantastic!”  The King said with a smile.
“But my King, we regret to inform you the Queen has died in child birth…”
“My wife is gone…?”
“She looked at her daughter and said ‘For you my life.”  Then she decreed that she shall be raised by the three witches away from the kingdom until her eighteenth birthday, when she will marry and she said she shall become the queen she never was, then she passed, sir.”
“Then may her wishes be fulfilled.”  The King stated and walked way from the servant and his daughter, who would never know the curse once bestowed upon her…