☯️ May I have your opinions? 🥺Pretty, pretty, please? ☯️

Hello fellow bloggers, and those who are also authors. 

I FINALLY came up with a blurb for book 2, The Will of the Dark Creator! The book has been FIFTEEN months in the making, so it’s about dam time. This is the rough draft of the blurb. I know it probably needs to be shortened, because it’s a little over 400 words. And the ideal blurb is supposed to be under 400 words, right? Here’s what I concocted so far. Let me know what you think… 

*** 

The alignment of the three moons is a sign of positive changes to come… 

How come the opposite is happening?… 

This second installment picks up where the first book left off, as the fun and festivities continue at the Hecctrossipy Festival—Continent 15’s yearly tradition that celebrates the victory over a legendary evil monster who had the power to manipulate the elements, and create chaos. However, not everyone is having a good time. 

Artheena has been unexpectedly betrayed by her sister, and cruelly used and disposed of by who she thought was the man she was meant to be with. While Mell May basks in her stolen glory, Artheena is left to figure out how to piece back together her shattered world. 

Shortly after the festival ends, she learns that there are far worse problems to worry about than her broken heart. Jyoseppy—the great entity in charge of the negative side of creation—is taking over other lands on Velva Leena with its catastrophic weather, strange and deadly new diseases, and other dark forces of nature. In a world where the majority supports Jumellica—the great entity in charge of the positive side of creation—even the Guardians can’t figure out how and where the dark creator is getting its steadily increasing power. Continent 15 is one of the few remaining safe havens on the planet—but for how much longer? 

An unknown virus is wrecking havoc among the grungol population. Young vervetts are disappearing without a trace, even while safely inside their own homes. Gruesome killings happen deep within the forest, that are too brutal to have been done by a carnivorous animal. Guardians and villagers have to put up a harder and harder fight to drive Jyoseppy’s destructive forces out of Continent 15. 

Jyoseppy’s dark influences also overshadow the lives of Artheena and her close-knit circle of friends and loved ones. 

Mell May returns to Village 3, alone and mentally unstable. Is she suffering through emotional trauma from being used and disposed of too? Or is it possible that there could be a much more disturbing reason behind her short-lived stardom? 

By the end of this second installment, someone will become a cold blooded killer, another will become a prisoner, and another will die.  

The dark creator’s hecctrossipy may be just a storybook myth, but the great entity’s will to take over all creation isn’t. 

Meet Black Historical Fiction, Poetry, and Urban Fantasy Author Yecheilyah Ysrayl

It’s time to meet another awesome author from my writing group!

Black Historical Fiction, Poetry, and Urban Fantasy Author, Yecheilyah Ysrayl, talks about her books, influences, and writing life.

Meet Black Historical Fiction, Poetry, and Urban Fantasy Author Yecheilyah Ysrayl

Our new class is LIVE! 🎉 SYSTEMIZED SELF-EDITING with Candace Johnson

Hey every people! The remarkable editor featured in this re-blog is not just the editor of Christa Wojciechowski’s Sick series. She has worked on famous titles, like the Chicken Soup series! So check this post out, and who knows, maybe you’ll want to stop on by our group❤️ As for me, I got some fresh, non re-blogged goodies for you, coming up this week…

Want an editing and proofreading checklist for a flawless manuscript? Get the bible of self-editing with Candace Johnson from Change It Up Edit.

Our new class is LIVE! 🎉 SYSTEMIZED SELF-EDITING with Candace Johnson

🧀💩 Skeevids! Eeeeew! 💩🧀

Hello, blogsters! 

Here is a sample of what I’ve been working on while not blogging, and not being all that social on WordPress. I had posted Chapter 20: TRUDGING THE STORM, of the second book in my series, a few months ago. A huge thanks to all who had read, liked, and commented on those posts. Since then, that chapter has been re-numbered and revised. Being the extreme writing perfectionist I am, it’ll most likely end up getting another revision or ten. 

Are you ready to get grossed out over an extraterrestrial illness? This chapter tells all the gray, rotten cheesy details. This first section tells about Artheena’s traumatic childhood memories from when she had skeevids. 

For those of you who know nothing about my YA/sci-fi & fantasy series, or if you’re someone who just randomly stumbled upon this post, here is a little fill-in for you. 

*** 

This story takes place on a different planet. Artheena is my main character in books 1 and 2. Mell May is her adopted sister, and Willberry is her five-year-old brother. Vervetts are the species of people they are, and Guardians are just a ruling race of vervetts. Jumellica is like a Velva Leenan version of God. A garden feeder is where compost is stored, and sackamuppo is an herbal skin treatment that prevents scars. 

*** 

Here is the first rough draft excerpt of Chapter 24: SKEEVIDS, from HECCTROSSIPY 2 The Will of the Dark creator. Enjoy—but don’t read this before, during, or after a meal. 

***    

Like how human children get chicken pox, vervett children get skeevids, including little Guardians. Artheena and Mell May had gotten skeevids when they were Willberry’s age. 

Mell May got it first, but her case was unusually mild. She had a fever like Artheena did, but her grayish white skeevid bumps were small—no bigger than the average pimple—and she didn’t suffer through the other unbearable symptoms. Her appetite was normal, she was able to get up and move around without being in constant pain, and her recovery was quick. Freakishly quick. The inflamed holes left behind from when all her skeevids popped, barely needed any plugging paste to boost their healing. They seemed to close up on their own, and her skin was almost magically smooth and healthy again. 

Mom and dad and the other grownups they knew gushed about how little Mell May was such an amazing surviver. She escaped death twice, and then Jumellica took exceptional care of her, by healing her skeevids so miraculously. They took this as a sign that the good entity must have something extra special planned for Mell May’s future. This was one of the few and far between times during their childhood, where Artheena felt jealous of her sister.  

Meanwhile, Artheena’s case of skeevids was the most traumatic twelve days of her life. She couldn’t eat or play, or do anything, but lay in bed and suffer, or scream in agony in the bathtub. All the while, the grayish white bumps all over her skin constantly swelled and popped, and then regrew. Skeevids usually form and grow gradually throughout the day, but sometimes Artheena saw them appear as gray circles on her skin, and then swell into round, hard bumps, right before her eyes. It was a total nightmare. The sound skeevids made when they burst was one that would stay in her memory, like a permanent scar. It was a loud popping and splattering sound that, to us,, would sound like someone shooting water balloons with a BB gun. The bigger the skeevid, the louder and more liquidy the pop. Even worse, when skeevids burst, they splatter out a greasy gray fluid that, to us, would smell like rotten cheese. 

Artheena’s fever was so high, it felt as though her body might cook itself to death. Mom tried to cool it down by putting damp wash cloths over her forehead and cheeks, but she could only keep them on Artheena’s skin for a short few moments at a time. The wash cloths weren’t wet enough to make them heavy, but to Artheena’s severely tender, skeevid infected skin, they felt heavier than bricks, making her face feel as though it was being painfully crushed. When mom removed the wash cloths, it barely gave Artheena any relief. Her head and joints ached from the fever, and the skeevid bumps made her skin constantly ache all over. She got quite a few of the largest sized ones, that swell up to the size of Earth’s tennis balls. These always swelled up on one of her limbs, while she was sleeping. Then she’d wake up with her leg or arm in throbbing pain, which didn’t go away until the huge skeevid burst.

Even the simplest movements were agonizing. She couldn’t sit or stand, or open her mouth to drink and eat without crying out in pain. So much pain made her unable to walk. 

When she needed a bath, mom and dad had to carry her into the bathroom, using a towel like a stretcher. Being carried in their arms felt a hundred times more crushing on her body, than the damp cloths did on her face. She was in too much pain to be able to use the toilet bucket, leaving her with no choice but to pee in the paper shroud that mom and dad kept her wrapped in, while she was in bed. Even worse, her vomiting and diarrhea was beyond her control. This humiliated her more than what a grotesque, rank smelling, skeevid popping, grease dripping mess she was. 

She always loved her bath time, but while sick with skeevids, taking a bath felt like the most brutal torture that could possibly exist. Mom and dad persistently tried to comfort her with reassuring words of Jumellica’s love for her, and how she was going to be all better, any given day. But Artheena was in too much agony to listen to them, and she screamed over all their coddling. The sensation of water on her skin felt both icy cold, and scalding hot at the same time. No matter how gentle mom and dad tried to be, when they wiped Artheena down with a wash cloth, to her, it felt like they were shredding her skin with a giant vegetable peeler. 

Her skin was so sensitive, she couldn’t even ware clothes. The slightest brushing of fabric against her skin felt like being stung by hundreds of insects while getting scratched with razor sharp thorns. 

The only thing that she had to let touch her skin was the coping shrouds. The uncomfortably stiff paper shroud, which was dusted with powdered herbs on the inside, was believed to have good healing benefits. However, the only thing they did was enhance her discomfort. Mom and dad wrapped her up in a new dry, crinkly, gritty shroud, every time they put her back in bed. Between the coping shroud and the rest of her aches and pains, she couldn’t get comfortable. Sleep only came if she cried herself to exhaustion. Or when her energy became so drained from her vomiting and diarrhea, it made her desensitized to the pain. 

The vomit and diarrhea erupted from her body, as though they had minds of their own. She couldn’t understand where it all came from, when her stomach could hardly hold anything down. It didn’t take much to make her queasy. The smells that she smelled every day, like the cool, earthy smell of her house’s stone interior, the aromatic wood and mylo mellow furniture, and the garden scented breezes that came in through the open windows, seemed noxiously overbearing. The poultry broth, nutritional teas, and porridges that her parents fed her tasted and smelled more like they were made from the contents of the garden feeder. Artheena couldn’t help gagging, as she obediently forced down the nourishment her parents carefully spooned into her mouth.

This living hell lasted for seven days. Through it all, the people around her did what they could to keep her distracted from her pain, and cheer her up. Friends, teachers, neighbors, and even some Guardians stopped by the house to deliver positive affirmation cards, and colorful bouquets of sensitive-stomach-friendly paper flowers. Mom read to her, dad entertained her with his stories about his intercontinental piloting great grandparents’ world traveling adventures, and both parents quizzed her on the lessons she was learning in school. When Mell May had fully recovered, she and their friends paid visits to Artheena, whenever they played outside. They talked to her through her open bedroom window. Or they’d sing to her, and tell jokes. A couple times, they made puppets out of their hands, and things they found around the yard, and performed a silly puppet show on Artheena’s outside windowsill. She appreciated everyone’s concern and attentiveness towards her, and did her best to act like she was getting enjoyment out of it. But Artheena was so miserably sick that she honestly wished to be dead. 

On her eighth day of suffering, no more skeevids formed, and all the ones that were there had popped. When she awoken that morning, her fever cooled down and most of her pain had subsided, but her skin was hideously honey-combed with greasy gray holes that were ringed with scaly rashes. She was in hysterically panicked tears, fearing that she was going to be ugly for the rest of her life. This fear got worse every time her parents reapplied the dressing around her skin, and she saw that the disgusting holes hadn’t closed up yet. 

While her skin was healing, she still was sick with a mild fever for another five days, and spent most of that time sleeping. Throughout those five days, mom and dad had to change her dressing, three or more times a day. She had to stand in the bathroom for a long many moments of time, while they carefully unraveled the tightly clinging fabric strips from her body. Then they tediously dug out the used plugging paste from each hole, with their fingernails, and plugged all the holes back up with fresh paste. She was then slathered head to toe with slimy lisp leaf gel, and re-wrapped in more fabric strips. Stay strips is what they are called, because they cling to the skin, and are better at securing medicine in open wounds than regular cloth bandages. When those five days were over, and Artheena was feeling better, she still had to undergo three days of full-body sackamuppo treatments until her skin was back to normal again.

This all happened ten years ago, but when poor Willberry got skeevids, the traumatic memories came back to Artheena as clearly as though they had happened last season. 

*** 

That was only a section. There’s more dialogue and drama in the rest of the chapter, and more of how awful life gets for Artheena and her family. Thank you so much for reading. I’m aiming to get The Will of the Dark Creator ready for beta readers, before the end of summer. 

Love you all! Second excerpt coming up tomorrow!… 

PART 😬😬 of… 🧀💩 Skeevids! Eeeeew! 💩🧀

Hi, again. 

It’s tomorrow! As I promised, here is the second excerpt to Chapter 24: SKEEVIDS from HECCTROSSIPY 2: The Will of the Dark Creator. The plot thickens, and oh, ugh, so does the mess. 

*** 

“What’s wrong with me?” Willberry asked, through frightened tears. 

“You’re sick,” said Burjiss, gently. “You have skeevids, but it’s going to go away soon.” 

“Every little vervett boy and girl gets skeevids,” said Tabatha, in the same gentle tone. “Even mommy and daddy got it when we were little. So did Mell May and Artheena, but we’re all OK now. So you’re going to be OK too.” 

“Just because you guys got it, doesn’t mean I should’ve got it!” cried Willberry. “I’m cold!” 

“Want me to put you’re blanket back over you?” mom offered. 

“No!” Willberry wined. “My blanket hurts! My bed hurts! Everywhere hurts! Why did I have to get skeevids!” He let out a howling cry of misery. 

Artheena’s heart swelled with empathy. In that moment, she felt what he was suffering through, as though she became that sick five-year-old self again. She felt the full-bodied pain of his infected skin, the burning and the aching bone chills of his fever, and the unbearable stinging and scratching sensation he probably felt when his blanket touched his skin. She wanted to hug him and hold him, and reassure him with all the words of comfort she could think up, but of course, that would do more harm than good.    

Willberry’s case of skeevids looked even worse than Artheena’s. His skin bubbled all over with the gruesome, grayish white bumps. Many of them were large enough to bulge like stones beneath his nightshirt. Tennis ball sized skeevids swelled over his knee caps. Clusters of smaller skeevids swelled between the larger ones, making his skin resemble a parasitic insects’ egg sack nursery. His whole neck, from above his collar bones to the bottom of his chin, was completely covered with the bumps, making it too painful to move his head. Skeevids were on his palms and on the soles of his feet. Egg sack clusters of them formed between his fingers and toes. They even formed on his scalp. Artheena couldn’t help feeling sick to her stomach, seeing the round, grayish white bumps slowly swelling up from beneath Willberry’s hair. 

“I know it hurts, and you feel lousy, but every little vervett has to go through it,” said mom, about to pat his head, but quickly stopped herself. “It’s a rough part of the journey of growing up, but it’ll pass very soon.” 

“Do grungol kids get skeevids?” Willberry asked, sniffling. 

“No,” said dad, “But grungols get other sicknesses.” 

The thought of Audry voraciously eating her own coins flashed into Artheena’s mind, and the way she hungrily licked the blood off her hands after she’d accidentally bitten them. 

“That’s not fair!” Willberry shouted through sobs. “Why wasn’t I born a grungol!” 

One of the tennis ball sized skeevids burst with an explosive, POP, startling them all. As much as it hurt to move his head, Willberry couldn’t help look. He screamed in horror at the sight of the gushing gray hole in his knee where the skeevid had been. He scrunched his eyes shut, crying with panic. Burjiss, Tabatha, and Artheena tried to calm him. They tried to get through to him that they were going to take care of him, and he was going to get well, and then once he was all better, the skeevids would never come back. However, he was inconsolable. He cried and screamed over them, like little Artheena did during her baths. 

Willberry knew about skeevids, but he was never exposed to the disturbing illness in real life. Tabatha was pregnant with him, when Artheena and Mell May got it. Some of his classmates went through it, and so did his friend, Snap, but he didn’t see them when they were sick. Snap’s parents were especially strict about not allowing him to have visitors while he had skeevids.   

“I’m sure I still have that old roll of stay strips from when you girls were sick!” said mom, raising her voice over Willberry’s hysterical crying. “But we might need more lisp leaves and ingredients for plugging paste for when he starts getting better!” She looked directly into Willberry’s tear streaming, disfigured face. “You hear that, little hecctrossipy! You’re going to get better, like a strong little monster!” 

“I’ll go get his supplies!” Artheena volunteered. “I hope to Jumellica that the place is open this early! We’re here to save you, Willberry!” Then she hurried out of the room, and made a leap and a short sprint to the front door. 

The rainy early morning air was so cold, it made her cough the moment she bounded onto the wet front walking path. Puddles splashed beneath her, their icy coldness uncomfortably nipping at her bare feet. She broke into a sprint again, once she reached the sticky, wet clay street. It was as putrid as Earth’s swamps outside, from so much waterlogged and rotting vegetation all over the village. Artheena’s beloved gardens were suffering too, but she hung on to the optimistic hope that all her trees and plants would survive and fully recover. The neighborhoods were a rushing blur as gray as the sky, as she sped through them, faster than Earth’s cheetahs. Rain drops pelted at her like icy pebbles, stinging her eyes, and soaking her shirt. 

It wasn’t until she reached the South Section boundary, when she realized that she had been in such a hurry, she forgot to change into daytime clothes before she went out. Artheena laughed this off without a care. It didn’t matter if she looked like a complete weirdo, going to the store in her nightshirt. The rain was getting a little heavier, which meant there was no time to waste, and her poor brother needed his coping shrouds. 

The Children’s Medical Supplies store was a boxy, blueish purple wooden building with a few pieces of colorfully painted, babies’ sized playground equipment on its wooden front porch. Once she saw that the store’s lights were on, she leapt over the porch steps, accidentally knocking down a tiny pink slide as she scrambled through the front door. 

Two orange-collared men greeted her, each carrying a bucket of warm, frothy mange water, ready to wash the wet clay from her feet. As long as it continued raining, this was to be part of the shopping routine. Artheena thought it was kind of nice. 

“I’m so glad this place is open.” she said, smiling and lifting a foot to the orange-collar standing nearer to her. The other orange-collar proceeded to clean the floor where Artheena stepped.

“They’re open all day and night, for the time being,” said the public servant, pulling a wet wash cloth from his bucket, and scrubbing her foot. “Guardians’ new orders. Thank Jumellica too. I don’t know if it’s this bad weather, but a lot of kids are getting sick now. The hospital is getting too crowded with sick people as it is.” 

Artheena shuttered at the thought of when the Guardians admitted the truth about Jyoseppy’s dark forces spreading through the world without explanation. 

“But at least no one has gotten sick enough to die, right?” she said, letting the orange-collar dry off her foot and begin washing the other one. 

“Nope,” he said with a smile. “And by the grace of the good entity, we’ll all make sure it stays that way.” 

“I see you ran out of fresh daytime clothes.” said the other public servant, smiling at her as he finished wiping the floor, and took a seat on a half-empty table of large medicinal roots. 

“She gave the men a look, as though she thought they’d lost their minds. “Oh, come on, you guys. You didn’t here about how new Scientific studies have shown that nightshirts are a more suitable garment for running in cold, wet weather. They allow a better aerodynamic air flow which helps you move faster than if you wore shorts or pants.” Her factual tone was so convincing, the two men pondered over this bit of information for a split moment. “I’m only kidding,” she laughed. “My baby brother came down with skeevids, this morning, and I need to get some coping shrouds, lisp leaves, and extra ingredients for plugging paste. But I was so in a rush to get them that I left the house without paying attention to what I’m waring.” 

“I like it,” said a young man who suddenly appeared in the room. “It’s blue, my favorite color.” He gave Artheena a crooked-toothed, flirty smile. “And it matches your pretty eyes.” He walked over to her, and shook her hand. “Hi, I’m Danknoid. I’m one of the new staff here, and I’ll be more than happy to help you.” 

Artheena smiled at him graciously, mentally reminding herself to not go back to her old snobby ways, by judging Danknoid to be a total dweeb. His curly main of bright yellow-orange hair looked like a giant briar. And his slight build and round, pimply face made him appear no older than thirteen

“You boys go ahead and restock the tea and snacks in the break room,” Danknoid said to the orange collars, as though he owned the place. “I’ll be helping this beautiful lady with her shopping.” 

“Thank you, but you don’t need to,” Artheena said politely. “I know where everything is. I’ve been here before many times.” 

Danknoid looked amused. “No, you do need my help. You not only ran to the store in your nighttime clothes, you forgot to take your shopping tote with you.” 

“Ugh!” Artheena groaned, stomping her foot. “I forgot to bring money too! I can’t believe what a flake I am, this morning.” 

“Don’t worry about it,” said Danknoid, putting a hand on her shoulder. “I’ll be your tote and hold your things for you, and I have hundreds of coins in my coin holder. Just tell me how many you think you need, and your shopping is covered.” 

“Oh, thank Jumellica!” she exclaimed, throwing her arms around him as she mentally thanked the good entity for granting her the fortune of being the girl that all the single guys want. She had always taken her way with men for granted, but for once, she truly needed this power of having above-average beauty for unselfish purposes. 

“My tote is in the store owners’ office. Follow me.” He took her by the arm and lead the way. The office was a tiny room in the back of the store that could barely fit the cluttered, two-person work desk that was crammed within it. Once they were in the office, Danknoid closed the door. A mischievous look flashed across his pimply face. Artheena felt a pang of anxiety, immediately knowing that this boy was up to no good. She backed up against a narrow space of wall, as Danknoid reached under the desk, and pulled out a purple polka dotted leather tote. Then he took out a coin holder that was twice the size of hers. He opened it up to show her that it was filled to the brim with Rewards and Thank Yous. 

“You can have all of this, and buy your brother all the medicine in the entire store if you want.” he said, in a lowered voice. “But on one condition…” He eyed her up and down with a wicked, crooked-toothed grin. 

*** 

Woe! Heck nah! Do I have the indecency to make this book, which is geared for a 14 + audience, get a little juicy??? Check your WordPress reader for tomorrow’s excerpt to find out. 

Love you all! Post you soon! 

Part 💎💎💎 of… 🧀💩 Skeevids! Eeeeew! 💩🧀

Welcome to the third excerpt of chapter 24: SKEEVIDS, from HECCTROSSIPY 2: The Will of the Dark Creator. What lengths will Artheena go to, to get her sick baby brother his medicine? 

***   

Her heart sped up with dread. This guy not only was a dweeb. He was a scheming little creep. “Whatever,” she said, acting unfazed. “I just want to get what I need and get going.” 

“Good. Then you’ll accept my pursuit.” He said, his grin growing wider. 

Artheena made a face. 

“Is that a, no?” he asked condescendingly, closing the coin holder. “Well, I guess your little brother will have to do without, and suffer.” 

“Do the owners of this place know that you treat customers like this?” she asked. 

“Jolp and Manganute went out for a bathroom break,” he said with a cocky smirk. “They’re in their hundreds with really bad arthritis. It takes them forever to walk to a privy and back. So they won’t be in here to do anything about this. If you don’t want my help, fine. You can go home and get your own money. Good luck getting back here when the rain gets harder, which it sounds like it already is.” 

“OK! OK!” Said Artheena, exasperated. She had vowed to never again make the mistake of accepting the pursuit of a guy she didn’t like, but this was unfortunately different. He was giving her no better choice. 

“Say that you accept it.” he demanded. 

“I accept your pursuit, Danknoid.” she said, flatly. 

“Thank you, my sweet, beautiful darling,” he beamed, handing her his coin holder. “Soon, I’m going to make you the happiest wife in the land.” 

She had to stop herself from recoiling when the jerk put an arm around her shell, as they stepped out of the office, and headed for the store aisles. This was embarrassing, especially when the two orange-collars came out from the break room, and smiled approvingly at the new young couple. Now, being the girl that all the single guys in the village want felt like a curse. Artheena kept her mind on Willberry, in order to not feel disgusted with herself. 

Thankfully, once they started down an aisle of medical paper products, Danknoid removed his arm from her, so he could carry her stuff. While she loaded his arms with boxes of folded up coping shrouds, paper bags of lisp leaves, and little jars of powdered and pureed herbs, he talked on and on about his tough life growing up in Continent 2. He survived through blizzards that lasted for dozens of days, and he merely escaped death when getting hunted down by blade-horned rambo monkeys in the hostile Arctic forest. 

Artheena knew this was all nonsense, and he couldn’t have really come from Continent 2. She had read about Arctic people before, and seen picturized illustrations of them. Vervetts from Continent 2 have burley builds, and their skin is as pale and shiny as polished white stone. Danknoid was as scronny as an ink twig, and as brown as a tree trunk. He reminded her of Dah Mackrel, who she noticed had stopped coming around ever since the Hecctrossipy Festival. She concluded that maybe he did have his heart set on getting with Mell May. For some odd reason, the thought of this conclusion made the image of Dah Mackrel dressed up like a Guardian, from her hecctrossipy nightmare, flash into her mind. 

When she and Danknoid walked up to the check-out counter, the store owners, who also took turns being the clerk, weren’t back yet. So Artheena left a pile of Danknoid’s coins on the counter for them. Danknoid insisted on carrying her stuff home for her, which she absolutely did not want, because then he’d find out where she lived. She was just about to politely turn down this favor, when Guardian Kroatis barged in.  

“Good morning,” he said, as the orange-collars hurried over to wash his feet. “How is everything in this store?” His luminous purple eyes sparkled with adoration at the sight of Artheena. “And it’s always good to see you, Artheena. Even in your nighttime clothes.” Her cheeks reddened with embarrassment. “How are things going with you and the rest of your family?” 

“Honestly, not good,” she said. “My brother came down with skeevids.” 

“But her brother will get better sooner, thanks to you Guardians making sure that this store is well stocked and open at all times, my noble Guardian.” said Danknoid, in a sycophant tone. 

“Yes,” the Guardian said to him. “Especially when you have a little sibling with skeevids too.” 

“Oh, no, my noble Guardian,” said Danknoid. “I just started working here, and wanting to be a good contributor and a good pursuer, I’m carrying this stuff for my wife-in-pursuit, because she forgot her shopping tote. Now I’m going to be of even better service, and carry her purchases home for her. 

Kroatis’s gloved hands balled into fists for a split moment, as his brilliant eyes blazed with repressed jealousy.  

“So she’s your wife-in-pursuit, huh.” He looked at his coveted villager. “Really, Artheena?” She shrugged, feeling ashamed. “Where is the couple who runs this place?” 

“They’re not here, sir,” said Danknoid. “They took a bathroom break.” 

“Then you can’t walk this customer home, if no one else is here to manage the store.” said the Guardian, authoritatively. 

“Jessup and Oosh are here!” protested Danknoid, losing his overly polite manner. 

“It’s not the public servants’ responsibility to take care of business matters,” said Kroatis, in a combative tone. “You, young man, are to stay here. I’ll get a wheel burrow for this customer to carry her stuff in.” 

“Oh, thank you so much, Guardian Kroatis!” Artheena joyfully exclaimed, wanting to throw her arms around him and kiss him. 

“You’re welcome,” he said with an adoring smile. “It’s always my pleasure to do what’s best for my villagers.” Then he gave Danknoid a dirty look that said, “You’re not really her pursuer, you little punk.”, before he disappeared out the door.  

Sheesh,” said Danknoid. “Some Guardians are such up-tight thorns in the foot.” 

“I know, right.” said Artheena, with a big smile. 

In less than a moment, Guardian Kroatis came back through the door, holding an empty wheel burrow. Artheena didn’t care where he got it, or how he got it so quickly. She was just glad she could ditch the dirt bag, and get out of there. In one swift motion, the Guardian took Artheena’s shopping order from Danknoid, and loaded it into the wheel burrow. Thanking Kroatis with a beaming smile, she gave Danknoid back his coin holder, which sent him sulking back to the office. Then she was free to hurry home. 

Fortunately, the rain didn’t get much heavier than before she entered the store. Even though she couldn’t sprint while pushing a loaded wheel burrow, its wheels rolled swiftly along the wet streets, which made it kind of fun to maneuver. 

Artheena tried not to think of how she was going to deal with Danknoid, once the weather cleared up. There were too many other negative issues she struggled to not let get to her. Accepting Galloway, Logort, and Jo Joga’s pursuits was enough of a big regret, but at least they were nice guys. 

Willberry’s bloody-murder screams echoed down the front walking path, as Artheena approached the house. When she opened the door, a blast of vomit and rotten cheese stench nearly made her fall backwards. “Curse of Jyoseppy! Ugh!” she exclaimed through choking coughs, as she rolled the wheel burrow into the sitting room. 

Mom and dad were giving Willberry a bath. Beneath his screams, she could here them talking to him in calm, reassuring voices, and the sound of a wash cloth being gently dunked in and out of his bath water. “MOMMY, STOOOOOOOOOP! IT BURNS! IT BUUUUUUUUUUURNS!” screamed Willberry. He shrieked out a cry of agony, as though he was really being burned. The sound tore at Artheena’s heart, making her want to cry. Especially knowing that poor Willberry had no better choice but to endure this torture. Not keeping a skeevids sufferer’s skin thoroughly washed would make the skin vulnerable to other infections.  

“Artheena?! Is that you?!” Burjiss called out from the bathroom, raising his voice to a holler over Willberry’s screaming. “Could you do us a big favor, and run to the Household Cleaning Supplies store! We have soap and mange fruit and wiping leaves, but I don’t think they’re going to last much longer! Willberry had an accident in his room, big time!” 

“OK, dad!” Artheena called back, leaping towards her room. “Please, Jumellica,” she said, quickly changing into some daytime clothes. “Help us stay positive through this. Give us your grace that will light our way. So we could bring more of the light of good to you.” she sighed with discouragement, as she grabbed her wicker shopping tote. “And how do I keep myself from failing at being of any help to the Guardians’ plan?” 

She hurried back into the rain, wishing she had a rain flyer, like the Guardians. The only thing to feel positive about at the moment was, at least she didn’t have to worry about running into Danknoid. The Household Cleaning Supplies store and Children’s Medical Supplies store were five streets apart. 

*** 

I hope you weren’t too disappointed about nothing naughty happening. I got to keep things at a censored, PG13 kind of level. Besides, vervetts aren’t horny creatures like humans. Two vervetts have to be equally in love with one another in order to get some mating action going. 

Coming up is the conclusion to this rough chapter in the South Section 5,898 family’s lives. Things only get worse for them, in chapter 25. 

Love you all! Post you in about 24 Earth hours!…  

PART ☠️☠️☠️☠️ of… 🧀💩 Skeevids! Eeeeew! 💩🧀

It’s the conclusion! The fourth and final excerpt of chapter 24. I know this was an odd place in the book to post rough draft samples, so I hope you’re not totally lost. If you kind of are, and you’d rather start at chapter 1, you’re welcome to be a beta reader. Even though this is the second book, there are recaps on things that went on in book 1. So you’ll have enough of an idea of what previously happened, to be able to follow the second installment. I will announce when The Will of the Dark Creator is ready for beta reading. Anyhow, here’s the rest of this grotesque chapter. 

Sweet nightmares… 

***  

Artheena moved like lightning. First sprinting through the South Section, and then doing high leaps over West Section streets and from roof top to roof top to get to the Household Cleaning Supplies store more quickly. The store only sold the same few types of items, so she was able to get what she needed and get out, in a little over an Earth minute. Then she sprinted and leapt home at such a speed, she barely felt the rain drops touch her skin. 

The house was freshened up a little bit, by the time Artheena came home. Willberry was no longer screaming, which meant that his bath was over. Artheena heard him still in the bathroom, sobbing and talking to dad in a winy voice. 

As she headed for the cleaning supply closet to restock it, she found mom in the kitchen, busily scrubbing Willberry’s vomit and skeevid juice soiled bed clothes in a wooden washtub full of pickly green, soapy water. “Breakfast is going to be light, this morning,” said mom. “Just spring grain porridge and roasted dried beans, since our oven isn’t going to be available.” 

As long as the swimming pool stayed solidified during the rainy weather, they had to continue doing their laundry the hard way, and use the oven as a drier. 

“That’s fine.” said Artheena, not having much of an appetite, despite how active her morning was. 

“I changed Willberry’s sheet and pillow case,” said mom. “I’m going to need you to do me a favor, and spread a good amount of toilet leaf litter over his bed, so it doesn’t get any more soaked. The poor guy puked up just about half an ocean this morning. I tried my best to scrub the mess out of his bed and his carpet, but unfortunately, the carpet is probably going to get filthy again, if he has more huge accidents.” 

Artheena quickly finished putting away the new cleaning supplies, and hurried into the bathroom. Her stomach turned at the sight of poor Willberry. He was lying naked on a shallow mound of towels on the floor. Without his nightshirt, she could see the full extent of his skeevids. Bulges and clusters of the infected bumps took over his body, leaving only a small number of spots where his skin was clear. In other places on his skin that had no bumps, Artheena saw translucent gray and dark gray circles on them—the sign of more skeevids to come. The other tennis ball sized skeevid had popped while Artheena was away, leaving both knees with a large gray crater in them. The crater over his left knee had three darker gray circles within it. 

“Artheena, get me out of here,” Willberry wined through pitiful sobs. “Dad won’t stop cleaning the tub, and it’s making my stomach feel barfy.” 

Dad had emptied Willberry’s bath water, and was now busily wiping down the inside of the tub with a handful of mange fruit wedges, and removing stray pulp with a wiping leaf. Artheena remembered how the strong citrus smell of mange fruit made her nauseous, when she had skeevids. 

“I just came in here to get the toilet litter,” she said, giving her brother a sympathetic look. “Mommy says to put some on your bed, in case you have another accident.” 

“Dad, stop it,” Willberry pleaded. “I’m going to throw up again.” 

“That’s what all those towels are for,” said dad, calmly. “If you’re going to get sick again, they’ll catch it.” 

Willberry gagged loudly, and his eyes began to water. Artheena got out of there with the bag of toilet leaf litter, before a stream of vomit shot across the bathroom floor. 

His bed and carpet were still wet from when mom cleaned them, but at least his room smelled like housewashing soap and mange fruit, instead of puke and skeevid juice. She scooped heaping mounds of the absorbent litter onto his bed, and carefully spread it out in an even layer. Then it was time to get out a coping shroud, and put it over the litter. The boxes of shrouds had been unloaded from the wheel burrow, and stacked up outside of Willberry’s door. Artheena cringed, and her stomach turned again, as a cloud of powdered herb smell wafted from the shroud once she began unfolding it. The smell was like a mixture of dead leaves, metallic minerals, and a weird sweet smell that reminded her of ripe plums and ink twigs. She had forgotten the smell until now. More traumatic memories flashed through her mind, as she carefully laid out the unfolded shroud. “Why do we even use these things? Bleck,” she said to herself, brushing away herb powder that got on her hands. “They don’t do anything at all.” 

Another bloody-murder scream echoed through the house, as Burjiss carried Willberry back to his room. He was wrapped up in a towel, which was already starting to turn gray. Artheena cringed, hearing the muffled pops of more skeevids bursting beneath it. 

“It stinks really bad in here!” Willberry yelled. “What did you do to my room mom?!” 

“She cleaned it up for you!” said Burjiss, raising his voice over a crying meltdown. 

“Why?!” Willberry screamed. “I don’t want it cleaned!” 

“Your room was filthy, and sick children need to be in clean rooms!” said dad. Tabatha came hurrying into the room to help them. 

“I don’t want you cleaning my room ever again, mom! I don’t like clean smell anymore!” yelled the little vervett, sounding bratty. However, none of them reprimanded him for this. They all empathized with his pain and sensitivities, especially Artheena. 

“It smells just fine in here!” she sternly argued over his crying. “It only smells bad to you, because your tummy is so sensitive! Now it’s time to get back in bed, and try to get some rest!” 

“I want to go to bed in Mell May’s room!” he argued, in a howling wine. 

“No!” said Tabatha. “Mell May’s room will make your stomach sensitive too, and that won’t be any good!” 

“I want to go to Mell May’s room! I… want… to… go… to MELL MAY’S ROOM!” he kept screaming, as Burjiss, Tabatha, and Artheena gently unraveled the towel from him, and laid him on the herb powdered paper. Then they carefully folded the shroud over his whole body and around his head, leaving only his face uncovered. “I WANT TO GO TO MELL MAY’S ROOM! MELL MAY’S ROOM!” His voice rose to such a scary sounding, screechy pitch, he no longer sounded like a person, but like some kind of raging monster. And there was a crazy, murderous look in his crying eyes. He was angry because he wasn’t getting his way and couldn’t fight back, but his pain and suffering amplified this anger to a level that had them all a little frightened. “GET THIS THING OFF ME! IT’S PRICKLING ME! IT’S PRICKLING ME!” He kicked and beat against the inside of the shroud, as his rage turned to panic. 

“Don’t freak out! It’s not prickling you!” Tabatha could barely shout loud enough over another screaming fit. “The shroud has medicine in it that’s good for you, and will help you heal!” 

His screaming rose to such a volume, the sound vibrated through the wet carpet and jabbed through Artheena’s ears. She couldn’t believe that such a deafening sound could come from a small child. 

Then there was a sudden loud, gurgling rumble from Willberry’s bed, accompanied by an intense, putrid smell that was worse than the smell of vomit and skeevid juice. Willberry had worked himself up into having a diarrhea accident. Burjiss, Tabatha, and Artheena exchanged anguished looks. They were going to have to remove him from the coping shroud, give him another bath, replace the soiled shroud and any soiled toilet litter, and then try to calm him down while getting him back in bed, all over again. Artheena remembered crying and screaming a lot, when she had skeevids, but she wasn’t even half as loud and temperamental as her brother. 

“Please, Jumellica, help us keep our sanity.” said dad, his barely audible words sounding weak and powerless under Willberry’s screaming, reminding Artheena of how strongly the dark side was rising against Jumellica’s admirers. 

*** 

Thank you so much for reading. I hope your stomach is doing OK. Despite the nastiness, I hope you enjoyed these excerpts. If you did, it would be awesome to have you express that with a like or a comment. If you didn’t enjoy them, those comments are welcomed too. Part of being a writer is getting to know readers’ likes and dislikes. 

I don’t know when I’ll be back on Earth full-time, where I can spend more time catching up on those of you I follow, and writing more original posts,, but I’ll get back as soon as I can. 

Love you all! Post you in a while! Another space taxi is on its way to take me back to planet Velva Leena.   

When proofreading becomes procrastination

Hey, awesome, magnificent, stupendous, blog followers❣️ No, I’m not being lazy, by not writing you anymore of my new material, and re-blogging other’s posts. I’ve just been so head-down in finishing up my second novel, I haven’t had time to write anything else. Believe me, there is so much to write to you about. God bless all of you people who can juggle a busy schedule and creative projects. If the fate of my soul depended on how well I could stay focussed on multiple tasks and ambitions at once, I’d be sent to the bowels of Hell in a nano second🚽🔥 A special thanks to new followers, and to those of you who stick around and put up with my inconsistent posting. Big, fat, whopping hugs and kisses🤗💋🤗💋to Christa and Nel for letting me bum off of your material, so I can keep this blog putt-putt-putt-putt-putting along when I can’t be around to post anything myself. For now, enjoy another enlightening post from Let’s Get Published💡

Editing as you write feels productive, but are you getting your story on the page?

When proofreading becomes procrastination