🤩😍 Ten Things I’m Glad To Have Seen, Before My Eyesight Went To P💩💩p 😍🤩 PART 2

Hi, again! Joy to a new week! Woohoo!! 

All right, enough pretend shouting. A few days ago, when I published the first half of this list of ten, I realized too late that I made a minor mistake. Nobody is going to care about this, but it bothered me, because I’m anal. I had said that the list is in no particular order of awesomeness, accept for the last visual experience being the best. What I meant was, the last visual experience as in #10 was the best, which is raved and gushed about on this post. On the previous post, yeah, the waterfall was amazing, but if I was listing those experiences according to their rate of awesomeness, the hot air balloon ride definitely beat the waterfall. 

So, without further adue, here is the second half of ten spectacular, amazing, super fabulous visual wonders I’m thankful to have experienced, before my world started becoming a dim, color blind, fuzzy mush fest. 

***    

6. THE INCREDIBLE BLUES AND AQUAS OF THE DEEP OCEAN: Between 2003 and 2015, I had joined the family on a few Caribbean cruises. Thankfully we only had to settle for an inside cabin during one cruise. The rest, we got to stay in balcony rooms. I absolutely love, love, loved this. When the ship was sailing, spending time out on the balcony was blissful. At night, there’s something about listening to the ocean waving and thrashing in the dark that makes the sound seem even more calming and soothing. I used to love the way the lights on the sides of the ship illuminated the froth stirred up by the ship’s speed. 

I loved to feel the energy from the ocean’s mighty power, and the amazing but humbling feeling of its vastness. Compared to how vast and massive the ocean is, I felt more like the size of an atom floating on a ship the size of a skin cell. It was an awesome reminder of how big the Earth really is. 

During the day, the blue of the ocean was always beautiful, but its beauty was at its boldest and brightest when we were sailing through its deepest parts. I felt I could spend all day staring down at the waving marbly swirls of the most intense shades of aqua, turquoise, and blue that I had ever seen. To this day, aqua is my favorite color, even though it looks pretty dull and washed out now-a-days.   

7. THE LIGHT AND COLOR DISTORTION FROM A SOLAR ECLIPSE: I first learned what a solar eclipse was, in third grade, and always hoped to witness one in my lifetime. I thought it would be the coolest thing to experience the moon blocking the sun and temporarily turning day into night, all while reducing the sun to a ring of corona wisps. 

Mom got the chance to see one when she was a kid. She viewed it through a little cardboard box that had an  aluminum foil lining. She said the eclipse didn’t turn the sky exactly as dark as night, but about as dark as dusk, and the sun’s corona looked like fire. 

We had a solar eclipse in the summer of 1991, but disappointingly, there was barely any coverage. I snuck a half-second glance at it, and it just looked like the sun had a little black dot close beside it. 

Then in the summer of 2017, America was anticipating another solar eclipse. The sun was expected to have more coverage in Florida this time around, compared to the eclipse of 1991. I was psyched. It had been over eighteen years since that time in third grade when I’d daydreamed about what it would be like to witness a total solar eclipse. Now the dream was finally coming true. I researched all kinds of information about solar eclipses over the internet, to help me get prepared for the big event. One of the things that was mentioned in one of the articles was that right before a total eclipse turns day into night, colors get distorted as the sunlight fades. 

When the big day came, it was said on the news that Florida wasn’t going to get total coverage, but 85%. This didn’t put a damper on my excitement. 85% was close enough to being a total eclipse, I assumed. The parents and I took our seats on the back patio several minutes before the eclipse’s predicted time. We didn’t have solar eclipse glasses, but Dad was keeping tabs on it on his phone. For me, just the moon casting us into darkness for a minute or so would be enough of a show. 

When the eclipse came, to my disappointment, it didn’t turn day into night, which proved how powerful the sun really is. However, I wasn’t too disappointed. 85% coverage was at least enough to distort colors, which was a part of the event I looked forward to seeing too.  

The afternoon sunlight was slightly dimmed, and everything had a weird goldish hue. The green of the back yard grass turned more yellowish, and the sky had an odd purple tinge. To me, it looked almost periwinkle. In regular sunlight, my skin is zombi white. In the light of the solar eclipse, it looked like I had a nice tan. It also gave my brown hair an angelic looking gold shimmer. It wasn’t how I dreamed it would be, but it was still an unforgettable, cool experience.   

8. UNUSUALLY COLORED FIREWORKS: It was the summer of 1998. The parents and I were visiting an old friend of Dad’s, who lived in the mountains of Georgia, but we stayed the night in a hotel. The mountain town itself was enchanting. There were scenic forests everywhere and mountains that glittered with granite and mica rocks. It was the fourth of July, America’s Independence day, but we kept the celebration very low key. The Georgian town we were in was in a dry county, so we couldn’t have really partied hard anyway. 

We hung out in our hotel room and Watched the Boston Pops orchestra do their traditional Fourth of July concert, which was followed by a fireworks show. Meanwhile, their was a fireworks show outside that was even better. I don’t know where the fireworks were coming from, but it was thankfully some place near enough to the hotel where we could enjoy the show from our hotel room balcony. 

These fireworks were not the usual red, gold, and green ones. They were all kinds of colors that I didn’t know fireworks were available in. They shot to the sky in glittering orbs of solid hot pink, yellow-orange, deep blue, bright purple, off-white, lavender, teal, peach, and just about every color in the crayon box. Even olive green. After each sparkling orb of color dispersed into a shower of sparks, the next color shot to the sky in perfect timing. I’m so happy to have seen this, because I never seen such unusually colored fireworks ever again. Olive green? Those fireworks were definitely not available in my state. That once in a lifetime show made that Fourth of July in 1998 one of my favorite ones.   

9. UFOS: It was spring of 2009. Dad worked for Duke energy, at the time. His job involved fixing malfunctioning transformers and cleaning any oil leakage around them. He was sent out to places all over Florida to do this type of work. Some places were crazy distances away from where we lived, in Homosassa. St. George Island was one of them. St. George is a little windy, beachy island near the Florida panhandle. Dad’s job obligation there meant that he had to stay there a few days, so he invited Mom and I to join him. 

It was a laid back, pleasant little trip. While Dad was out working, Mom and I hung out at our hotel room. We read, watched TV, I listened to CDs, and we got a good workout struggling to walk on the nearby soft sanded beach when the weather was exceptionally windy. When Dad was around, we went out to eat at the quaint little local restaurants, and then just hung out. This trip was the last place I would’ve expected to encounter extra terrestrial activity. 

I was into aliens for most of my life. Not so much the science fiction type, but real stories about people who’d encountered them. It was my dream to see an actual UFO. I used to hope I would be abducted one day, despite hearing the scientific experiment horror stories from alien abductees. Even if they were to experiment on me, I still thought it would be so cool to meet a different species of people from another planet. To see the inside of a real spacecraft and the technology inside it that doesn’t exist anywhere on Earth, and to ask the alien scientists my lesser intelligent human questions. However, after reading Communion, and reading about how the aliens really fucked around with the author’s mind, I was glad to never have been abducted. Although, it was still cool to see UFOs. Or if they were not UFOs, it was cool to see what could’ve possibly been military testing of very alien-like technology. 

One night, while I was lazing around in bed and watching TV, the parents went on an evening stroll on a boardwalk by the beach. When they came back, they told me about seeing glowing orange objects in the sky. The objects were spherical, and they’d disappear and reappear. The following night, I went walking with them to see if I could see what was possibly alien spacecraft too. I, of course, needed binoculars that were adjusted to their most magnifying strength.. As if the objects knew we had come out there to see them, they appeared into view shortly after we took our seats on a boardwalk bench.  

To me, they didn’t look orange, but more like the color of candle flames. They were perfectly spherical, and made no sound as they flew over the ocean near the island’s coast. The weirdest, most alien thing about them was the way one would appear, and then multiply into three. Sometimes it was two or four or more. The way they multiplied was strange too. It was like, one glowing sphere would kind of magically poop out fully formed replicas of itself from one or both sides. They also only multiplied in strait horizontal rows with the spheres looking evenly spaced apart. Sometimes they disappeared a second or so after multiplication, and sometimes one sphere would appear to inhale and swallow the others in its row, before disappearing. Or they would swallow one another until they became one again. The way these things kept multiplying in different numbers and in different ways got me wondering if this was some sort of secret code. A military base was not that far from the beach. When the disappearing mathematical UFO show stopped, a military jet flew out from the base and in the direction of where the strange objects were, as though intending to investigate. Or perhaps they weren’t. Perhaps some advanced species from another world was communicating with American military, and the mathematically choreographed rows really were a code. 

Whatever the case, the St. George locals were so used to seeing those objects, it was nothing interesting and exciting to them. They dismissed it as the military just doing their thing. I sure found it interesting and exciting, and even though there was no proof that what we saw was actual alien spacecraft, it was UFO-looking enough for me.        

10. BEING A CO PILOT: Dad was a pilot, back in his younger days. From our life in St. Petersburge to when we lived in Inverness, we had a family plane. First, Dad owned a cute little two-seater plane that he named Emilia. Then he traded her in for a slightly bigger Sesna that could seat four. Both planes were kept at little nearby airports where other plane enthusiasts kept their privately owned leisure aircrafts. Every now and then, we’d have little family outings during the weekend, or on weekday evenings, where Dad would take us flying. Sometimes our dog, Angie, even went flying with us. I wonder what went on in her dog mind when she went for a plane ride. There was something about flying that made her more relaxed than riding in the car. 

Dad’s little Sesna was limited on what tricks he could do with it. He couldn’t fly the plane upside-down, or make it do flips and spins, or anything crazy like that. The plane wasn’t designed for such things. Dad said that the wings could fall off if he tried to do anything dare devilish. However, the tricks he could make the plane do still thrilled me when I was a kid. He could make it fly almost completely sideways, but my favorite trick was when he made the plane stall. Stalling was flying it up to a certain height, and then shutting the engine off for a second or two to make the plane do a coasting sort of free fall for a thousand or so feet, before quickly turning the engine back on. I loved the fun, floaty elevator sensation from this. 

As my sisters and I grew a little older, I remember them not being as into flying as I still was. Flying was never Mom’s passion in the first place. So she stayed back more often too, and it became mostly just me and Dad taking the plane out. Not believing I would ever go blind, I went through a phase where I was into aviation and rockets. I even dreamed of becoming an astronaut when I grew up. When I was ten, Dad allowed me to have the closest experience to taking command of a flight. My eyesight was limited compared to those with 20/20 vision, but it was sharp enough for co piloting a little plane that flew a lot lower than airline jets. 

It was September of 1990. The family and I were living in Inverness, at the time. We had moved from St. Petersburge, a little over a year prior, but we visited the close family members that we left behind, at least once or twice a month. The problem with this was, St. Pete was about a two hour car ride away. Throughout that first year in Inverness, Dad talked of wanting to go to St. Pete by plane, because it would take less than half the time it took to drive. But because we were a family of five, the only way going to St. Pete by plane could be possible was if someone stayed behind. 

On that magical weekend in September, it was time for another St. Pete visit, but Dad came up with a plan. Mom and Angie would take the car to St. Pete and he would take the plane, and me and my sisters could decide who goes with who. I gladly volunteered to fly with Dad. 

Since it was just he and I, and the flight was going to be much longer than our typical fifteen or twenty minute joy ride flights—about forty to forty-five minutes—he asked if I’d like to sit up in front with him and be his co pilot. Of course I was up for this. Not only did I have eyesight, I already knew how to operate the steering wheel. I remember the Sesna’s two identical flat metal steering wheels that could be pulled outward from the dashboard and pushed back against it. If I could remember correctly, I think turning the left side of the steering wheel slightly at a downward tilting angle maneuvered the plane to the left. Turning the right side at a slightly downward tilting angle made it go right, but turning either side at a sharper tilt made the plane tilt. I think pulling the wheel outward turned the plane’s nose toward the ground, and pushing the wheel back into the dashboard steered the plane to fly higher. Something like that. It’s been thirty-two years since that magnificent voyage. 

It was a clear and sunny afternoon, so the view below was incredible. During our short family joy flights, we flew in a more limited space of sky, not wandering too far from the airport and its surrounding parts of town.. While copiloting the flight from Inverness to St. Pete, we flew higher and got more of an eagle-eye view of North to Central Florida civilization. 

wooded areas, expansive or small, different fields, parks, and pastures, and the trees and grasses among people’s yards and city blocks seemed to all unite together as one communal greenness of the land. Scattered all over the carpet of vegetation green were patchy messes of roof tops. Thousands of roof tops of houses and buildings resembled thousands of pebbles and stray mosaic tiles. More colorful roof tops, like ones that were blue or brick red, stood out among a majority of grays, tans, browns, and whites. Intermingled with the pebble and tile roof tops were lines, loops, and swerves of streets, which looked more like loose tangles of hair thin, gray thread. No matter what city we were flying over, I saw what looked like a never-ending pattern of vertical and horizontal lines that evenly crisscrossed over everything, like the world was divided into puzzle-like, perfectly symmetrical squares. In my silly kid mind, I wondered if this was the globe’s latitude and Longitude lines, and that maybe they’re really visible, just like they are on geographical maps. When I told Dad about this, later on, he told me that that was the power grid I was seeing. 

I’ll never forget this particular body of water we flew over. I don’t remember if it was a lake or a bay, but its two-toned water looked so weird and mismatched. The body of water had a bridge across it, which looked white and about as long and as wide as a matchstick. On one side of the bridge, the water was a polluted looking brown. On the other side, it looked as blue as a swimming pool, or as blue as Windex. This looked so unnatural. 

When we landed and arrived at another small airport, I felt like I was hot stuff, copiloting at only ten years old. Dad said I was a natural at it and did as good of a job as a fully sighted person. It gives me the warm-and-fuzzies, just writing about this memorable September Saturday afternoon, thirty-two years ago. When we met up with Mom, my sisters, and our dog at the grandparents’ house, the first thing that Dad and I did was brag about our flying adventure and my first time copiloting. I don’t remember what happened the rest of that weekend, or whether I co piloted with Dad on the flight back to Inverness, or let one of my sisters have a shot at it. But that first time co piloting is among my collection of fondest childhood memories, and one of my most favorite visual experiences. 

*** 

That concludes my list of ten things I’m glad to have seen, before my eyesight went to poop. And speaking of eyes, I hope yours are still doing okay after reading that lengthy post. 

Final thought: What do you get when a blind person’s prosthetic eyes fall into a pot of boiling water?… 

… Eyes tea! 

Love you all! Post you soon! 

⭐️F⭐️I⭐️N⭐️A⭐️L⭐️ Installment Of 🚎🚎🚎🚎🚎 The Trolley Tracks Are Alive

Last call for my first fic-fact story in my fresh new blog series! I seriously need to write much shorter posts. I promise you, this post is quite a bit shorter than the previous one. Oooweee, did my forth installment NOT go over well with you guys. I apologize for how long that one was. This new series is still in its embryonic stage, and I’m still learning how not to screw up with building my author brand. 

Last we left off, Artheena, Mell May, and Audry had a blast at Audry’s mom’s cousin Jill’s 167th birthday party, despite Mell May having a couple embarrassing mishaps. They played Conjo Mog and Moldy Couch, and the two vervetts partied until they passed out. Now it’s the end of the night for Artheena and Mell May, and the end of this story. 

***   

Artheena, Mell May, and Audry’s parents, Budgy and Lulu Bell, were greeted by the same awkwardly shy ticket holder at the North Section trolley stop. Audry, the exceptionally wealthy grungol in her family, wasn’t around to pay Artheena and Mell May’s way. Artheena nearly protested when Budgy and Lulu Bell pulled out a more modest amount of extra Thank You coins than Audry would’ve given to the ticket holder, after paying for the vervetts’ tickets, but she decided to be polite and keep her mouth shut. She was thankful that Audry’s parents were nice enough to leave the party and miss out on a lot of fun to ride with her and Mell May all the way to Under-Village 3, so they could burrow them back up to their back yard. 

Compared to how busy and bustling underground public transportation was at the beginning of the night, the North Section trolley stop seemed nearly deserted. It was so quiet, they could hear the faint sounds of turn whistles echoing from far within the trolley tunnels. The only other sound was some low-key chattering among trolley stop venders. Aside from Artheena, Mel May, Budgy, and Lulu Bell, the only other people who were waiting for a ride were an elderly grungol couple who sat in the leisure travelers’ section of the waiting area. Both their heads were immersed in books. So the four other travelers didn’t bother them as they took their seats on a couple of stone benches in the leisure travelers’ section too. 

If Velva Leenans used clocks, it would be about equal to the time of 3:00 a.M.—Much too late for a couple of fourteen-year-olds to be out when they had school the next day, but Artheena doubted she would have any trouble staying awake through her classes. She felt as wired as an Earthling with a caffein overdose from all the excitement of the night. First there was the Leeandro Paul concert, earlier in the evening, where she realized that Continent 15’s latest and greatest, drop-dead gorgeous singing sensation is into her. Then she had a blast at Lulu Bell’s cousin Jill’s wild and crazy, 167th birthday bash. She sat between Budgy and Lulu Bell, animatedly going over the events of the night and how amazing they were. Meanwhile, Mell May had taken a whole bench for herself and passed out. 

She was so tired when they left the party that she acted like a cranky big baby all during their walk to the trolley stop, yawning every other moment and constantly complaining, “My feet hurt.”, “My legs hurt.”, “How much further do we have to go? I can’t keep my eyes open.” Budgy, Lulu Bell, and Artheena tried carrying her part of the way, but she complained that she couldn’t get comfortable. Now she laid on her shell, sprawled out on the bench, snoring and drooling and making goat noises in her sleep. If Artheena wasn’t in the company of kind and non-judgemental grungols, she would’ve been embarrassed by her sister. Mell May’s blue left foot stuck out in the aisle. It was still stained from when she’d stepped in a pile of spilled berries after crashing onto Jill’s snack table. Artheena wondered how they were going to explain to their parents why Mell May’s foot was blue. Maybe they could tell them that she’d accidentally stepped in a paint set in the middle of the night, when she got up to go to the bathroom. Jumellica only knows if Mell May really did own a paint set, but her room was so cluttered with her hoarded impulse buys, their parents might not know any different. 

I love you, sis, but why do you have to be such an idiot, Artheena thought, looking over at Mell May. As though responding, her sister snorted as her head flopped to one side, allowing a gush of drool to spill onto the stone bench. Artheena made a mental note to herself to have a trolley stop assistant sanitize that bench. 

The sound of loud bongo drums thundered into the room from the open entrance to the trolley tunnel. Their ride was here. “Welcome to Under-Village 8!” said the friendly Commute Coordinator who had Welcomed Artheena, Mell May, Audry, and the others they’d traveled with to Under-Village 8, earlier that night. A Guardian and a grungol came into the room, not returning the friendly greeting or bothering to acknowledge anyone as they started across the waiting area, talking in hushed voices. Artheena was surprised when she recognized the grungol. He was the same advanced pediatric medicine lecturer she had seen at the South Section trolley stop in Under-Village 3. The same books of notes and charts that contained disturbing pictures of children with gruesome diseases and birth defects were tightly clutched in his lower arms. He looked upset, which was rare for a grungol. Even the Guardian looked a bit frazzled. This got Artheena concerned. The trolley stop was quiet enough to where she hoped to get an earshot of what they were talking about. Did it have to do with those poor, disfigured children? Artheena cringed as the images from those charts flashed across her mind. The Guardian sensed that she was staring after them and shot her a quick, warning look that said, I know you’re trying to eavesdrop on us, villager. She immediately turned her gaze toward one of the murals on the wall, not wanting to break a behavioral law by being rude in the presence of authority. Whatever the issue was, she just had to have faith in Jumellica that the Guardians would soon resolve it. 

“The two of you going to Under-Village 6 and the four of you going to Under-Village 3, come on aboard!” called out the Commute Coordinator. Artheena, Budgy, and Lulu Bell stood up. Budgy went over to Mell May’s bench and clapped loudly in her ears with all four hands.  Mell May groaned irritably as she opened her eyes and stretched. 

“Up and at’em, Mell May flower! Come on, come on!” he coaxed. 

“Okay, okay,” snapped Mell May, trying to grab at Budgy’s hands to make him stop clapping. “Knock it off, please.” She sat up, stretching again and yawning. “Curse of Jyoseppy. Waking up sucks.” 

“The trolley is here,” he said, helping her get to her feet. “It’s time to get on board.” 

“You could take a nap once we’re in the trolley.” said Lulu Bell. 

Ugh, my foot is bluer than ever,” Mell May noticed, as they started walking towards the tunnel entrance. “I hate kanipple berries.” 

“It’s probably just the bright lighting in here that makes your foot look bluer.” said Artheena. 

“I’m sure you could get that off by soaking your foot in the pool for a little while.” said Lulu Bell. 

“Maybe I’ll tell Mom and Dad I have a rare, contagious foot fungus infection,” said Mell May. “Then they’ll let me stay home from school tomorrow.” 

“Yeah, right.” Artheena laughed. 

“Hey, guys, going home from the party so soon?” said the coordinator, with a smile. 

“No, Lu and I are going back,” said Budgy. “These girls have school tomorrow. So we got to get them home, so they could catch a few winks of rest before it’s time to get up in the morning.” 

“Well, good luck with getting through your classes, girls,” said the coordinator. She grinned when she noticed Mell May’s foot. “What’s up with your foot? That better not be something contagious.” They all laughed. “You all have a good night. Until we meet again, Budgy and Lulu Bell.” 

Mell May and Artheena always adored how cool and lenient grungols are. None of them cared that the two vervett kids often stayed out inappropriately late. As long as they didn’t cause any trouble, and as long as their late night adventures didn’t make them too sleep deprived to be able to keep up with everyday responsibilities, grungol grown-ups didn’t question them or see any reason to tattle to Artheena and Mell May’s parents about their sneaking out at night. The girls thought that Budgy and Lulu Bell had to be the coolest grown-ups in the world. Even when they were little, no matter what time of night Audry brought them down to the under-village, her parents never ordered her to take them back up to the surface so they would go home and go back to bed. They encouraged Artheena and Mell May to hang out with Audry as much as possible to the point where it was a little weird sometimes, but no one questioned this. 

As they walked through the short cavernous hallway that lead to their awaiting trolley, Mell May let out an embarrassingly loud yawn that sounded like a cross between a howl and a bird squawk. It echoed all down the trolley tunnel. 

Jeeze, Mell May.” Artheena laughed. Her poor sister was so overly exhausted that when they boarded the trolley, she nearly shoved her ticket into the driver’s eye instead of his hand. Then she staggered to the nearest empty bench and conked out the instant she sat down. 

Artheena sat in the empty seat across from her. Budgy and Lulu Bell were about to join her, but the elderly couple who were going to Under-Village 6 beckoned them over. The wife thought she recognized Budgy. 

“First stop is South Section, Under-Village 3,” the driver announced, as he adjusted his destination panel. “I’m not going to drive too fast, because I don’t want that young lady sleeping over in that seat to get knocked to the floor. Are we ready to start?” the passengers who were awake gave him the okay. “Everybody have everything”? Nobody left anything in the trolley stop? Got your water bottles, my fellow grungols? Okay then, off we go.” 

The trolley started down the slippery algae track in a smooth and gentle glide. After sitting alone for a few moments, Artheena thought maybe she should join Budgy and Lulu Bell and hang out with that other couple, but then she got a listen of their conversation and changed her mind. The old woman who claimed to know budgy started talking about repairs and renovations her neighbors planned to do on their home, which lead to the four of them swapping boring stories about the occasional problems they’d had with their pantries and kitchen cabinets. 

Artheena looked out her window and admired the glowing gemstone artwork they glided past. The part of the tunnel they were in now was adorned with pictures of silver-white stars that were many different sizes. Some stars overlapped with one another to make weird designs. Some large stars had smaller and smaller stars within them that reminded Artheena of the layered rings within a tree trunk. She let her mind wander, dreamily thinking about Leeandro Paul. It was no surprise that he was interested in her. She was the most beautiful girl in her village. She’d went on dates with every boy she knew and had them all spellbound. Not a day went by without having boys following her around, staring at her, wanting to hang out with her and competing for her attention, or approaching her with the hopes of another date. Sometimes she agreed to go out with them, but other times it was fun to mess with their heads. 

Sometimes she’d agree to meet up with her date at a restaurant or the theater, or some other place in the East Section, and then not show up. She’d get one of her friends to find him and report back to her how long the poor guy had been moping around, waiting for her like a fool. If ever he confronted her about standing him up, all she had to do was make up some story about how one of her neighbors needed her help with something, or one of her friends needed help with homework, and she’d unintentionally took a lot longer than she’d wanted to. The gullible sap would always believe her and forgive her, especially if she acted very apologetic and flirted with him too. It was also fun to agree to go on dates with two boys to the same place, with either boy not knowing she made plans with the other. Whichever boy showed up first was her date for the evening, while she would apologize to the other boy and claim that there must’ve been a misunderstanding about the day and time they planned to meet up. She liked to watch her losing suitor jealously look on as she enjoyed her date. Or the boys would exchange dirty looks and mouth insults at one another before the one who wasn’t her date walked away. They never blamed her for any dating mishaps. Her favorite way to mess with a boy’s head was to say, “I’ll think about it.” when he asked her out on a date. No matter how she tormented her many admirers, they always came back for more. Every boy dreamed of making Artheena his wife. She’d caught the eye of eligible grown men too, like Leeandro Paul. He was the only guy whose head she would never mess with. The only guy she truly wanted. He would never be expendable to her like the rest. 

She would be fifteen in three seasons, the age of legal adulthood on Continent 15 and the age when she would be old enough for men to pursue her until she would choose one to be her husband. With so many guys in love with her, Artheena used to imagine that being old enough to choose a husband would be the most challenging age in her life. Now that she knew she had Leeandro Paul smitten, her choice was made. She just hoped to Jumellica that he could wait three more seasons for her. But three seasons was an awfully long time for a guy like him, who was so hot and so talented and who hundreds of women wanted. She hoped to Jumellica that she wouldn’t be expendable to him, that some other beautiful girl wouldn’t come along and snag him away before she was old enough to accept his pursuit. 

Before Artheena knew it, she drifted off to sleep and into a bad dream. She dreamt that she was doing yard chores on a beautiful sunny day, and all her animal friends were around her, but for some reason, she hated Mell May. Murderously hated her. It wasn’t clear in the dream what her sister had done, but Mell May had betrayed her in some unthinkable way. The deep hurt, the level of anger that was darker than any negative feeling Jyoseppy ever induced in real life, it was all so real. So terribly, vividly real. Like this moment of being in such a dark state of mind had truly happened. The sound of the trolley driver’s bongo drums thankfully banished that horrible dream, and she was back in her happy waking life. 

They were pulling up to Under-Village 3’s South Section trolley stop. Artheena smiled at the glowing abstract artwork of carnivorous beasts with monkey limbs frolicking up in the trees. She looked across the aisle at her sister who was stretching and yawning and looking more refreshed. The horrible dream flashed back into Artheena’s mind, but she shoved it out of her thoughts. It was just a dream. Mell May was her best friend in the world. Sure, she had many faults, but she was as harmless as a butterfly. She would never betray Artheena or deliberately hurt her in any way. 

Then once again, they were at their lovely local trolley stop. Andrill the ticket holder and her son, Droft were still there, happy to greet them. Mell May and Artheena couldn’t believe the night was over. This was probably the latest they’d ever stayed out. If they went to bed when they got home, morning would be not too long of a nap away. Luckily, the naps they had taken recharged them with perky energy. 

They exchanged good-nights with the world’s coolest grown-ups, once Budgy and Lulu Bell burrowed them up to their back yard. They were welcomed to the surface by a glittering night sky with the three moons shining bigger and brighter than usual. It added an extra touch of cheer to their back yard, which was already a festive light show of teppid stone, swirling clouds of fire winged moths, and other walks of bioluminescent life. It added an extra touch of cheer to their hearts too, as being back on the surface reminded them of the Leeandro Paul concert they had went to before Jill’s party. They went dancing down their garden paths, singing their favorite Leeandro Paul songs, holding hands like they did when they were little girls as they swung and twirled each other around. Their singing carried through the fragrant tropical breezes. Jumellica, the creator of all things beautiful, somehow made their singing harmonize perfectly with the music made by the creatures of the night. Life was wonderful, and the sisters felt completely blessed by the good entity in countless ways… 

But this was in the past. 

This entire story was just a happy childhood memory in the blissful, care-free past when their world seemed like a paradise that thrived with Jumellica’s love, and their mindset was full of naive optimism brought on by the innocence of youth. As Artheena and Mell May sang and danced their way to the house beneath the starry, moonlit sky, joyfully living in the moment on such an amazing night, they could’ve never imagined that these blissful, carefree times would end in only a little over a year. 

Only a little over a year from now, the Guardians will reveal terrifying truths that they had been keeping from their villagers. Continent 15 will be in a state of crises, and Mell May, Artheena, and Audry’s close life-long friendship will be broken. In only a little over a year from now, one of the three best friends will be dead… 

*** 

Thanks-a-billion for reading. The stories in this blog series will not be available in the Hecctrossipy book series, BUT they are linked to the events in the books. Book 2 WILL be coming out in late summer or early autumn. Book 1 has been all by its lonesome at Amazon for nearly two years, but book 2 will follow it up at last. Book 2 is coming out! Book 2 is coming out! Ah, yeeeaaah

Love you all! Post you soon!   

PART 4 of🚎🚎🚎🚎 The Trolley Tracks Are Alive… which ended up not being the final installment. Oops!

Hey, readers! 

Oops! I thought this was going to be the final installment for this story, but my imagination changed the plan on me. This story will end. I’m not writing an entire novel draft based on Continent 15’s underground trolley system. 

Last post on this story was about a couple weeks ago. So here’s a memory refresher, in case you lost track of what the hell is going on. In PART 3 of The Trolley Tracks Are Alive, you learned about the gemstone artists, the trollies that are made mostly of mushroom, the gloppety gross algae tracks, what a destination panel is, and how it’s possible to make a speeding trolley stop without stepping on the breaks. Artheena shared a sentimental childhood memory, and you rode the rest of the way with everyone singing extra terrestrial gospel music. 

Now it’s time to party! 

We’re finally going to Audry’s mom’s cousin Jill’s 167th birthnight celebration where they’ll play party games that are out of this world. (Corny pun fully intended.) You’ll also see that, maybe Artheena and Mell May’s sisterly relationship isn’t exactly as sweet as birthnight pastries and cookies. 

***   

The crystal street cousin Jill lived on always had the same distinctive smell. Her neighbor across the street, an eccentric, elderly grungol woman in her 230’s, didn’t grow food or medicine in the vertical wall gardens outside of her cave home, but she sure was obsessed with draydles. The frilly, yellow cone shaped flowers were all she grew. Their fragrance, like a cross between oranges and ripe palm fruit, overpowered the variety of aromas from other neighbors’ wall gardens and permeated the whole street. Artheena, Mell May, and Audry smiled at the smell of that old lady’s draydles as it reminded them of past visits to cousin Jill’s. 

Jill was a widow. Her husband had drowned in an underground river. His contribution was collecting rocks from underground bodies of fresh water and studying the micro organisms that grew on them for scientific and medicinal purposes. One night, he carelessly let himself get distracted while chit chatting with a colleague, and wasn’t looking where he was stepping. One misstep made him lose his footing and fall off the slimy, algae infested rocky river bank, making him fall in the river and get caught in an under current. This happened a little over a hundred years ago, but Jill never remarried, because she never felt lonely. She lived with her grown son, Mackruff, his wife, whose name was also Audry, her two grown grandkids, Saber and Mart and their spouses, and five great grandkids. It was always a full and happy house. Jill and the rest of her family loved to throw crazy parties, and like the South Section 5,898 family, they often had unplanned neighborly get-togethers. 

Mell May, Artheena, and the thirty-eight grungols that accompanied them were each greeted with joyous hello shouts as they stepped through the curtain of orange flowered vines that made the cave home’s front door. “HAPPY BIRTHNIGHT!” the new guests all shouted. Once inside, they were ambushed with furry, four-armed hugs and balls of paper confetti beads being thrown in their faces and dropped over their heads. 

Mell May roared with laughter at this whole spectacle, laughing like an insane person until she started choking on a confetti bead that flew into her wide opened mouth. 

“Are you going to be okay?” asked Makruff. “Do you need the Maloosa Vassincoff?” 

“No,” she could barely choke out. “Please, please, no, not that stuff.” She shuddered. In a world where the Heimlich maneuver hasn’t been discovered yet. The most common way to dislodge something that went down the wrong pipe is to have finely powdered Maloosa Vassincoff bark sprayed into the nose and mouth. Its intense pungentness induces violent coughing fits to force the blockage out. 

“Oh, dear,” said his wife, the other Audry. “Should we get her some water too?” 

Mell May made a weird noise that sounded like a cross between a burp and a cough. “I’m okay,” she said, sounding normal again. “It’s out. I just swallowed it. But I would like some water. My mouth kind of tastes like throw up now.” 

Artheena wrinkled her nose, wishing that her sister didn’t have to be so blunt. 

“Let’s go get you that water.” said the other Audry, taking Mell May by the arm and leading her through the crowd. 

“Artheena!” Jill exclaimed, making her way towards her. “What a nice surprise that you and Mell May came. And hello, Audry.” She turned toward Audry’s parents. “Budgy, Lulu Bell, nice to see you. It’s nice to see all of you. Where’s your sister, Artheena?” 

“Makruff and Audry took her to the kitchen to get her some water,” said Artheena. “I’m sorry, but me and her didn’t get you any birthnight gifts. We came here on impulse.” 

“Your presence here is enough of a gift,” said Jill, putting an upper hand on Artheena’s shoulder. “I hope you girls have a great time. We’re going to have some crazy games going on, later on, and there’s plenty to eat. But it might not be a good idea to stay the whole party. Don’t you and Mell May have school tomorrow?” 

“Yeah,” said Artheena. “But we’ll be fine. We stay out late on school nights all the time.” 

“Well, what your parents don’t know won’t hurt them.” said Jill. Artheena and Audry laughed, along with those around them who heard their conversation. Jill was just cool like that. “All right, I’m going to look for Mell May and say, hi. Enjoy yourselves.”  

Artheena and Audry—the teenaged Audry—proceeded to mingle with the other guests. The crowd was massive, as expected. Audry’s family was probably the biggest grungol family in the land. She had relatives living in every under-village in Group 4, and it seemed like a majority of them were at this party. There were aunts and uncles and great aunts and uncles, first, second, third, forth, and fifth cousins, and each relative brought over some of their own friends and neighbors. And more people were expected to come. Artheena and Audry didn’t worry about losing track of Mell May, or Mell May losing track of them. Being the only vervetts at the party, neither sister would have any trouble finding the other.   

Jill’s cave home was designed for immense party crowds, with bigger, more spacious rooms, and less hallways. This party took up three rooms, so far. Some people hung out in the sitting room, which was the first room everyone entered. Some hung out in, what Jill called, the fun room. The fun room looked like an even bigger sitting room, except there were shelving units all along the walls. Each were stocked with different types of card games, board games, jigsaw puzzles, and indoor sports equipment. The fun room was also where the guests put all the birthnight girl’s gifts. Dozens of festively colorful boxes and bags adorned with ribbons and sprigs of sweet smelling herbs were piled up so high, they looked like sky scrapers at the back of the room. An archeological study room was available for the guests to hang out in too. 

Jill’s grown granddaughter, Saber, and her husband were archeologists who traveled the world, collecting and studying the remains of extinct ancient creatures. And they were the only ones who couldn’t be at the party, because they were off on an expedition on Continent 24 and were not expected to come home for another season. Their study room was a little on the morbid looking side for a place for socializing. Next to a bookshelf full of reference books and copies of research reports, there were shelves upon shelves of fossilized animal skulls and bones, and wax models of the heads of demonic looking ancient carnivores. However, the grungol guests didn’t see it as anything morbid. It was just another nice, clean and tidy, big room that was conveniently next to the fun room. It had comfy couches and chairs for when Saber and her husband threw parties in there to celebrate a new archeological discovery, and all the wax heads and ancient animal remains made for good conversation pieces. 

Garlands of pink, yellow, and orange flowers were strung along the walls of the three rooms and around all the furniture within them. Jill and her family had borrowed spare light stone lamps from their neighbors, and set them on every table and side table. The rooms’ light fixtures had been taken down from their hooks. Different colors and sizes of large, frilly tissue paper cones hung in their place, which made the set-up for a popular grungol party game called Conjo Mog. 

Foldable mushroom wood tables full of party treats were set out in the three rooms too. There were bowls of home-grown berries and other delectable fruits that grow underground, dried roasted seeds and nuts, and curly, colorful flower petals that had been fried until crispy, like Earth’s potato chips, but their taste was more like fruity candy. There were platters of grungol-style cookies and pastries too—made with only plant based ingredients. And every table had a tall stack of disposable skitzo paper cups and several large clay pitchers of jassup fruit juice, which was the birthnight girl’s favorite drink. The juice was pitch black and syrupy sweet with a taste kind of like Earth’s current jelly. 

Audry and Artheena caught up with Mell May in the archeological study room. She and Audry’s friend-and-possible-crush, Brotell, were hanging out by a full bodied wax model of an ancient carnivore that was actually beautiful. 

“Brotell,” Audry exclaimed. “There you are!” Her two vervett friends exchanged giggly nods over how she looked a little too happy to see him. 

“Hey, you,” Brotell smiled at Audry. “I was wondering when you were ever going to bother to give me the time of night.” he teased. 

“Sorry,” said Audry, with a slight giggle. “I had about one million relatives I wanted to say hi to, and I too would’ve given you the time of night. You could’ve hung out with us at the trolley stop, or sat across from us on the trolley, you know, instead of all the way in the back.” 

“I didn’t want to interrupt your time with your sparkly shelled friends,” he said. “And if I sat across from you on the trolley, I would’ve had to sit on my great grandma’s lap.” 

Awe, that would’ve been so cute,” Artheena teased. “Cool statue.” She turned toward the wax creature that had the wings and tail of a lizard, the tree climbing claws of a horse, and a head and body that resembled a slender, long legged panther. “What is it?” 

“It’s the ancient kar… uh… thing.” said Mell May. 

“The ancient varkrong,” Brotell corrected. “It’s said to have prowled the forests of Continent 29, three-hundred-million years ago.” He had some archeological knowledge due to his avid fascination with the natural world, reading books on everything nature, and going to the surface to hike the forests to look for new things to discover. 

“I thought Continent 29 was a desert land.” said Mell May. 

“It is,” he said. “It used to be full of lush forests, three-hundred-million years ago, but Jumellica and Jyoseppy changed their minds for whatever weird reason and decided to turn that land into a desert.” 

Artheena made a mental note to go to a West Section book store and look for books about what the world was like before Jumellica granted vervetts and grungols the blessing of being smart enough to create things like civilization and technology. Very little was taught about this subject in children’s schools, because not enough discoveries had been made and not enough theories had been proven to be facts for the Guardians to make it a regular part of the school curriculum. There wasn’t even an archeologists’ training school in her village. “It’s weird how our creators would change a whole land around to be the opposite way,” she said, looking at the varkrong again. “Or why did they stop creating certain animals and replace them with new ones? It’s like they go through phases, like kids do.” 

“Maybe Jumellica and Jyoseppy are still kids,” said Brotell. “I heard that they’re almost a billion years old, but maybe that’s like, eight years old in great entity time.” 

“Maybe in another three-hundred-million years, they’ll turn our tropical continent into a frozen arctic land.” said Audry. 

“That would be great,” said Mell May. “It would get rid of all the skullvicks.” There was nothing she feared like Continent 15’s most notorious predator in the animal kingdom, who can sharp-shoot their lethal venom from their blood red, glowing eyes. 

“ATTENTION EVERYBODY!” said Jill’s amplified voice through a megaphone-like voice enhancer, as she entered the study room and startled the four teenagers from their deep conversation. “ATTENTION EVERYBODY! IT’S GAME TIME!” The crowd fell silent. “WE HAVE SUCH AN AMAZING NUMBER OF PEOPLE HERE THAT ALL OF US CAN’T PLAY THE SAME GAMES ALL AT ONCE. WE’RE GOING TO HAVE TO GATHER INTO LESS NUMEROUS CROWDS. ONE CROWD WILL GATHER IN THE SITTING ROOM WHERE THE CONJO MOG COURSE STARTS. ANOTHER WILL GATHER IN THE FUN ROOM TO PLAY MOLDY COUCH, AND THE REST OF YOU WILL JUST HAVE TO BE THE AUDIENCE.” Some people in the crowd made exaggerated huffing and moaning noises of pretend disappointment. 

Moldy couch?” Mell May laughed. “What the heck kind of game is that?”    

“WE’LL SWITCH AROUND AND TAKE TURNS.” Jill continued. “GATHER UP NOW. THE GAMES WILL START IN JUST A FEW MOMENTS. FORTY PLAYERS AT ONCE FOR CONJO MOG, AND EIGHT PLAYERS AT ONCE FOR MOLDY COUCH… BUT WE DO HAVE MORE THAN ONE COUCH TO GET OUR MOLD ON.” The crowd cheered. A split moment later, they heard Jill making those same announcements in the fun room. 

“What is this moldy couch game?” Mell May asked again. 

“It’s a new thing that’s been invented only maybe two or three seasons ago,” said Brotell. “You’ll love it. It’s hilarious.” 

“Okay, so what does everybody want to do first?” said Artheena. 

“I want to play Conjo Mog,” said Audry. “I love that game. The last time I played it was at Dad’s grandpa’s birthnight party, almost a year ago.” 

“And I love watching it,” said Artheena. “I wish there was such a thing as ceiling gripping foot pads that vervetts could ware on the bottoms of their feet, so they could play too.”

“I want nothing to do with that game,” said Brotell, as they started towards the sitting room. “All that running around in circles upside-down, bleck. My stomach can’t take it.” He turned toward Audry. “But I’ll have fun watching you do it. And if you fall from the ceiling, I can catch you.” By the look on Audry’s face, Artheena and Mell May imagined she was probably blushing beneath her silver-gray fur. 

~~~ 

With hair on the palms of all four of their hands and on the soles of both feet that acts like thousands of tiny, powerfully gripping fingers, grungols can easily climb walls and crawl along ceilings  as effortlessly as an insect. However, running on a ceiling is more of a challenge. When moving about the ceiling using two limbs instead of all six, gravity, of course, has a stronger pull on the grungol’s weight, making their upside-down running look more like awkward stomping and staggering. How funny this looks is part of the game’s amusement. They can’t run with super-cheetah speed either, like they can when running right-side-up, which adds to the challenge. 

Forty upside-down grungols race one another through an obstacle course of sixty-six upside-down paper cones. They have to run around each cone two to seven times, clockwise or counter clockwise, depending on the color and size of the cone. Several referee-type obstacle course monitors hang from the ceiling on the sidelines, but right-side-up by their upper hands, and watch the upside-down racers’ every move. They call out any mistakes that a player makes that puts them out of the game. If they run around a cone in the wrong direction or the wrong number of times, they’re out. If they touch a cone or any passing players, they’re out. And if they look down below them instead of keeping focussed on looking strait ahead, they’re out, even if it’s a quick glance. When a player is called out of the game, they have to drop down from the ceiling and shout, “Conjo Mog!” 

It’s common for players to put themselves out of the game. Spending an unnaturally long time upside-down while running around in dizzying circles can sometimes get sickening. 

The winner has to sing the name of the game as loudly and with as long of a note as they could hold, before dropping down from the ceiling. Once down, they get ambushed by confetti bead balls. If there’s a tie, the remaining racers have to keep running around and around the last cone until one or the other gives up and drops down first. 

Brotell and the two vervetts excitedly stood among the crowd in the sitting room and watched Audry and her thirty-nine other competitors climb up a wall and take their places on the ceiling, hanging upside-down behind the starting cone. 

“Welcome everybody!” shouted Jill’s grown grandson, Mart, who had a naturally booming voice, like Earth’s boxing ring announcers, and didn’t need a voice enhancer. “It’s time… for our first round of Conjo-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o Mog!” The crowd cheered, even the players hanging on the ceiling. “Racers, get ready-y-y-y-y!… On the count of three!… One!… Two!… Three! GO!” 

The forty racing grungols scattered like frightened roaches to avoid touching one another, before they went tromping through the obstacle course, their feet noisily smacking against the ceiling. Their lopped ears swung and twirled about as they staggered like Earth’s drunks. The sight of it made Artheena laugh every time. She, Mell May, Brotell, and the other on-lookers followed the race, pushing and shoving one another as they whooped and cheered racing friends and family members on. Obstacle course monitors whistled and barked out each player’s name and their mishap and ordered them out of the game. Whenever a player shouted, “Conjo Mog!”, everybody below held their hands up to catch them. 

The two vervetts got distracted from the game for a brief moment when they ran with the crowd through the fun room and got a glimpse of the Moldy Couch game going on. At first glimpse, it looked like groups of grungols chanting, “Moldy couch!” around clouds of whirling colors. 

Audry made it to the thirty-seventh cone before she was ordered out of the game for accidentally brushing against another player as she tried to run ahead of him. “Conjo Mog!” she shouted with a big silver smile as she dropped down from the ceiling. To Brotell’s disappointment, she was too far off over the crowd for him to catch her. A couple of elderly grungols caught her instead. Then she pushed and shoved through the crowd until she found her three friends. 

“Great job!” said Mell May. 

“You did awesome!” said Artheena, giving Audry a hug. 

“Amazing,” said Brotell. “I could never make it to the thirty-seventh cone. The last time I tried to play, I nearly lost my birthnight cake at cone number four.”  

The race wasn’t over yet. After Audry was out, there were four players left. The cheering on-lookers followed them through the archeology study room, and then back to the sitting room where the end of the course was on the opposite side of the ceiling as the starting point. One player accidentally skipped a cone while making a sharp turn and was out. Two players got so excited when they made it to the sixty-forth cone, they accidentally slammed into each other when circling it. So they were out. The last player remaining was behind them, still circling the sixtieth cone, but he was the winner. “Conjo Mog! Conjo Mog!…” he sang, in a funny, twangy, yodeling voice that made everybody laugh, as he finished running through the rest of the course. The crowd exploded into deafening cheers when he made his final circle around the last cone, and then gave everyone an upside-down bow before dropping from the ceiling. Mart had an enormous box of confetti bead balls ready for ambush. Those standing nearest to the winner grabbed as many of the balls as they could and smashed them in his face. The crowd didn’t stop cheering and applauding until the last confetti bead ball was smashed. When it was over, the winner looked hilariously ridiculous with little brightly colored paper beads stuck to his fur. 

“Congratulations! Under-Village 7 Omarrial of #67 South Section 2,999!” boomed Mart. “How does it feel to be the first winner of this game tonight?!” The crowd fell silent to hear the winner’s answer. 

“Do we have any sandwiches?!” Omarrial shouted. Everyone laughed. 

“Artheena, Mell May,” said Jill, who suddenly appeared beside them, her clunky metal voice enhancer in hand. “Would you girls like to play Conjo Mog? I wouldn’t want you to feel left out.” 

“You mean you have ceiling gripping foot pads we could ware?” said Mell May. Jill gave her a puzzled look.

“Of course she doesn’t,” Artheena laughed. “I made that up.” She couldn’t believe the bubble-headed things that came out of her sister’s mouth sometimes. 

“We don’t need any ceiling gripping foot pads,” said Jill. “You girls could simply ride on a couple players’ backs. I know it’s not really racing, but you’ll get to see what it’s like to be in a race upside-down on the ceiling. I think it’ll be fun.” 

“Whoever we’re riding won’t have any chance of winning, lugging our weight around.” said Artheena. 

“Oh, Artheena, nobody really cares about winning,” said Jill. “It’s just a party game. I’ll tell you what. We’ll just have the two grungols that would carry you girls in this next race. How about that?” 

“Sounds like fun.” said Mell May, enthusiastically. 

“MAY I HAVE YOUR ATTENTION, EVERYBODY!” Jill announced into her voice enhancer, making the chattering crowd fall silent. “ FOR OUR NEXT ROUND OF CONJO MOG, IT’S GOING TO BE A VERVETT AND GRUNGOL RACE! BUT SINCE WE ONLY HAVE TWO VERVETTS AT THIS PARTY, ONLY TWO GRUNGOLS WILL BE RACING! NOW I NEED TWO BIG, STRONG GRUNGOLS WHO THINK THEY CAN RACE WITH THESE BEAUTIFUL GIRLS ON THEIR BACKS! HOW ABOUT YOU, FEZZLE AND DANZO!” A split moment later, two grungol men with wide torsos and thicker-than-average limbs came towards them. “ARE YOU READY, GIRLS?!” Jill whooped and clapped, getting everyone else in the room whooping and clapping. 

“WE’RE READY!” the vervetts shouted in unison. 

“It’s time!…” boomed Mart. “For our first vervett and grungol round of Conjo-o-o-o-o-o-o-o-o Mog! Ladies, get on your grungol friends’ backs!” The crowd cheered and applauded louder as Artheena hopped onto Fezzle’s back and Mell May got on Danzo. They both got into burrowing position, out of habit, but then realized they could relax and ride in the more comfortable piggy back style. All eyes were on them as the grungols carried them up the wall. Mell May began screaming as the men reached the top of the wall and carefully climbed over the flower garland and onto the ceiling. The two vervetts had ridden on grungols’ backs many times, traveling to and from the under-village, but these rides were always right-side-up. They’d never ridden a grungols back on the ceiling or while hanging upside-down, high above a crowd. Both girls were screaming when the men released their hands from the ceiling and dangled by the grip of their two feet. 

“You can do it!” Jill shouted through the crowd noise. 

The vervetts wrapped their legs as tight as they could around the grungols’ wide, flat waists and hung on for dear life. Artheena looked down at all the smiling grungol faces cheering them on and shouting words of encouragement, and she felt a little less scared. Mell May, on the other hand, kept her eyes clenched shut. 

“Are you ready-y-y-y-y-y!…” shouted Mart. “One!… Two!… Three! GO!” 

Danzo and Fezzle ran the upside-down race as though the adult-sized vervetts clinging to their backs were as light as air. They didn’t even stagger, like the other players did in the first race. Instead, they circled around the cones with grace and precision as though they were doing a choreographed dance. 

Artheena quickly grew to enjoy this race ride, and her screams of fear became whoops of delight. Meanwhile, Mell May still wouldn’t open her eyes, and she screamed as though a skullvick came into the room. 

In her state of panic, Mell May dropped down from the ceiling without shouting Conjo Mog. Nobody reached up to catch her until it was too late. She crashed onto a snack table, sending dishes of food flying in all directions and spilling to the floor. Artheena wanted to yell at her sister for being so careless, but the grungols were laughing about this disaster, even the Conjo Mog players. They stopped running at the sixth cone. The race was over. 

“Are you okay?!” Danzo called down to Mell May. 

“I’m sorry.” said Mell May, with a shaky giggle. She got up and climbed off the table, but then her foot landed in a pile of spilled berries. “Uh, oh, oops.” Someone handed Mell May a wad of cave moss paper napkins to wipe off her foot, and the grungols nearest to the snack table began cleaning up the mess. 

“Fezzle and Artheena are the winners!” announced Mart. 

“CONJO MOG!” the grungol and vervett sang in unison, although Artheena was laughing too. From her view on the ceiling, she saw that stupid Mell May’s foot was stained blue. 

“WAY TO GO, ARTHEENA!” Jill shouted into her voice enhancer. “ARTHEENA! ARTHEENA!” she began chanting, as the two grungols and one vervett dropped down from the ceiling. The whole room was chanting her name as Fezzle held her up on his shoulders and danced around, and confetti bead balls went crashing over her head. Through the pouring rain of confetti beads, she gave the crowd a winning smile. She felt like a star, basking in this ridiculous amount of glory over winning a game without even doing anything. Things like this were typical. People thought she was awesome no matter what she did. Fezzle danced further through the crowd, and Artheena got a glimpse of her sister. Mell May didn’t look too happy. 

~~~ 

As the party-goers in the sitting room got ready for the next Conjo Mog game, Audry, Brotell, Mell May, and Artheena headed for the fun room to play Moldy Couch. Some of the couches and chairs had been stacked up to clear a large enough space for four small fake couches plus the crowds of on-lookers that were to stand around them and watch the game. These couches were made of little magnetic disks. There were eight players per couch. Each of the eight players was given a large basket with straps that buckled around the waist, and each basket was full of a different color of fuzzy blobs that had a magnetic disk at one end. These blobs were the pretend mold. 

The object of the game was for the eight players to dance in a circle around the couch, while throwing the magnetic mold onto it as quickly as they could within the time it takes the crowd around them to chant, “Moldy Couch” five times. The player with the most fuzz blobs stuck to the couch wins. 

Mell May chose the fluorescent orange fuzz blobs, Artheena got the lavender ones, Audry got yellowish gray, and Brotell got an ugly green that made his fuzz blobs look like real mold. The other four players had mauve, brown, black, and mustard yellow. 

“All right, couch wreckers,” said the young grungol woman who had handed out the baskets and helped the vervetts adjust and buckle the straps to fit around their more narrowed waists. “Get in a circle. Are we ready?” The eight players nodded as the people who crowded around their couch applauded. “After I say, moldy couch, it’s time to throw. Mol… dy… COUCH!” 

The magnet disk couch instantly disappeared beneath hundreds of flying fuzz balls that formed a cloud of blurred colors. The grungol players’ arms moved with such superb speed compared to their much slower dancing feet, the vervetts couldn’t see them. Artheena and Mell May were at a disadvantage. Not only was vervett strength and speed naturally inferior to that of grungols, they had two arms instead of four, which made them unable to grab as many blobs out of their baskets per throw. 

“STOP!” shouted the young woman. The crowd around them cheered and applauded. The two vervetts burst out laughing at what an ugly sight the couch was. It was covered in terrible color combinations of fuzz blobs, making the couch appear to have some kind of nasty disease instead of a mold infestation. The young woman then counted each color of fuzz blobs that made it onto the couch, as she picked them off and put them back in the players’ baskets. Quite a lot of the blobs had ended up on the floor. Most of them were the lavender ones. Artheena really stunk at this game, coming in last. Mell May, who had remarkably above-average arm coordination, came in third. 

“You must have a lot of experience at this game.” the young woman said to Mell May, looking amazed. The other players and the crowd around them exchanged their agreements on how good Mell May played.

“No, this is my first time.” she replied. 

“Well, grace of Jumellica, you have a gifted pair of arms,” said the young woman. Mell May gave her an appreciative smile. 

The winner was the player with the mauve fuzz blobs. Instead of getting ambushed with confetti bead balls, the winner was simply put in charge of the next game. As all the players helped pick up the remaining fuzz blobs from the floor and gave the refilled baskets to the new grungol in charge, Artheena thought she saw Mell May flash her a smug look.     

Audry and Brotell wanted to play another round of Moldy couch, but their vervett friends decided they needed to take a break. They had been on their feet through their entire time at the party, walking around and mingling, running around and cheering with the crowd during the first Conjo Mog race, and then participating in the games themselves. Now they just wanted to find a place to sit for a few moments. So they parted ways with their grungol friends. They found an unoccupied  comfy couch to sit in in a far corner of the archeology study room, sighing with relief as they relaxed into it. The next thing they knew, Audry’s parents, Budgy and Lulu Bell, were shaking them awake. 

“Artheena, Mell May,” said Lulu Bell. “It’s two-thirds past the night. I think you should get home and get to bed.” 

“Mom?…” said Mell May, disoriented. She opened her eyes and looked around. “Curse of Jyoseppy,” she yawned. “We’re still in Under-Village 8.” 

“But you need to get going, so you could be back in Village 3.” said Budgy.

“We want to see Jill open her presents.” said Artheena, stretching and yawning. 

“Jill isn’t opening her presents until the end of the night,” said Lulu Bell. “Maybe not even until sunrise. A time when you girls would be getting ready for school.” 

“And besides, she’s got about five-hundred gifts to open,” said Budgy. “I think you girls would get bored out of your minds sitting through her opening all of them.” 

Both vervetts stretched and yawned. The archeology room was quiet with only a small crowd of grungols calmly chit chatting. Nobody was playing Conjo Mog or Moldy couch anymore, but a dance game was going on in the sitting room. They could hear people rhythmically clapping to someone playing a flute-like instrument. Jill’s amplified voice was giving instructions, “UPPER HANDS ON YOUR HEAD. LOWER HANDS ON YOUR HIPS. SHAKE YOUR HEAD. SHAKE YOUR HIPS. SHAKE YOUR HIPS. SHAKE YOUR HANDS ON YOUR HEAD. SHAKE YOUR HEAD AND YOUR HIPS…” It was a game where players had to follow dance instructions at a faster and faster pace. 

The sounds of the party still lively and kicking helped Artheena into alert wakefulness, but they made Mell May feel even more exhausted. “Can’t we just wait until morning to catch a trolley to Under-Village 3?” she wined, yawning again. 

“Nope, that would not be wise, and you know it,” said Budgy, loudly clapping his hands by Mell May’s ear. “You need to head out now. Come on, Mell May flower, snap out of it. Artheena is already as awake as the sun.” 

Artheena stood up and stretched again. 

“We’ll ride with you girls and take you up to the surface.” said Lulu Bell. 

“Don’t leave the party for us,” said Artheena. “We’ll be fine going home on our own.” 

“We’ll come back to the party after dropping you off,” said Lulu Bell. “The trollies aren’t as busy this time of the night, so we won’t miss out on much.” 

“Besides, you’ll need some extra help traveling back home with this girl,” Budgy pointed at Mell May, who had nodded off again. “Get up! Up! Up! Up!” He clapped in her ear with two hands and shook her with the other two. Mell May let out a miserable groan as she shoved Budgy away and forced herself to stand up. She leaned on him for support while the four of them walked through the three rooms, announcing their good-byes and receiving more furry, four-armed hugs. Audry was notified that her parents were taking her vervett friends home and would be back in a little while. Mell May and Artheena called out to Jill through the noise of the dancing game, wishing her a happy birthnight. “GOOD NIGHT!” she called back to them through her voice enhancer. 

“GOOD NIGHT!” echoed the crowd of dancers, all smiling and waving at the departing vervetts. 

What an incredible night it had been, despite Mell May having a couple little mishaps. She and Artheena left the party with smiles on their faces and hearts full of happiness as they stepped out into the draydle scented street and started for the North Section trolley stop. 

*** 

Woooooow, that was long, but thanks for reading. I hope you enjoyed partying on a different planet. Until next time… 

Love you all! Post you soon! 

Come write with me in the Writers Mastermind!

PART 3 of🚎🚎🚎 The Trolley Tracks Are Alive

Hi there, and welcome to the third lovely installment of this fic-fact story. 

Last we left off, you were put smack-dab in the middle of the whole alien underground trolley stop scene. You learned about their quirky but simplified and very organized way of running their pre-industrial public transportation system. Artheena, Mell May, and Audry were having such a good time hanging out and waiting for their ride, not even the disturbing sight they’d seen in the waiting area could bring their mood down. 

In this second-to-last installment, you’ll get a closer look at the beauty and the nastiness of grungols’ nightly under-village to under-village commuting, and more about their speedy but motorless trollies. Artheena once wanted to drive a grungols’ trolley when she grew up. It looked like the coolest job in the world. Perhaps you might agree.

So hop on board and enjoy the lights, the speedy ride, and the company, but don’t mind the funky trolley track smell. And behold the ambush as one of the living tracks feeds on its prey. 

***  

“Good evening,” said the driver as Mell May and Artheena stepped down from the stone ledge and into the trolley. A big, silver toothed smile was on his dog-like face. “So you’re the only two vervetts coming along on this ride, huh.” they nodded and smiled. “It’s nice to see a couple of lovely shells among so much fur.” He was referring to the shiny, jeweled turtle-like shells on the girls’ backs. “I’m especially fond of the gold ones.” 

“Thank you.” said Mell May, smiling appreciatively. 

“My, goodness!” the driver exclaimed, jovially, as the girls handed him their tickets to Under-Village 8. “Is everyone here going to Under-Village 8?” He put the tickets in a drawer below his dashboard, which had sixteen compartments for tickets to all sixteen under-villages. 

“It’s my cousin Jill’s birthnight tonight.” said Audry’s mom, who had taken her seat nearer to the back of the trolley. 

“So it’s a birthnight party tonight, huh,” said the driver. “That’s wonderful.” 

Audry, who stepped into the trolley after her vervett friends, put four coins in the driver’s nearest lower hand to pay their fair and two coins to pay hers. The moment he opened his coin drawer, she tossed in an abundant amount of more coins. Then she took her seat with Artheena and Mell May on one of the middle benches. 

“So everyone is going to the North Section of Under-Village 8,” said the driver, adjusting the destination panel on the dashboard. “”This sure is starting off an easy evening for me. Last trip, I drove a whole bus load of people to the South Section of Under-Village 3 from the South Section of Under-Village 4.” He positioned his feet on the trolley’s pedals and gripped his upper hands onto the steering wheel. “All right, everybody, are we ready to ride?” 

YEAH!” said the crowd, enthusiastically. 

“Okay,” He slowly began to pedal, making the trolley’s slick slate wheels roll along the wet, slippery track. “Three… Two… one…” Everyone grabbed onto the handles, which were behind the seats of the people in front of them. “Off to the party!” The driver’s powerful grungol legs pedaled the trolley with full force, sending it down the tunnel at a speed more like that of Earth’s motor powered automobiles. 

While Mell May began giving Audry the scoop on the latest gossip about her and Artheena’s classmates, Artheena, who sat by the window, withdrew from conversation for a few moments to admire the glowing gemstone artwork they whooshed past. The trollies didn’t have headlights or tail lights, because there was no need for them when the tunnels were lit up like Earth’s Christmas trees. Gemstone artists decorated them with different pictures every night. Tonight’s artwork was abstract. The tunnel’s walls and ceiling were alight with crazy pictures of things like, a village’s anthropomorphized West Section buildings having a dance party beneath a sky full of smily faced clouds that were all playing different cloud instruments, Velva Leena’s three egg shaped moons being actual eggs that hatched out lizards with scales made of twinkling stars, and giant flowers with vervett families playing different sports and party games on each petal. The glowing gemstones only came in silver-white, a warm shade of golden yellow, and a soft shade of blue, but the limitation of color choices never put a limit on the artists’ imagination. 

There were at least a few hundred grungol gemstone artists per under-village. The Guardians assigned each under-village’s artists into teams, and each team was to gather up at one of their under-village’s four trolley stops by mid evening. Then, they would discuss their ideas for what types of pictures they want to create and gather their art supplies from the trolley stop’s storage closet. The three colors of gemstones were kept neatly separated in large wooden buckets which the artists carried into the tunnels. Some of the artists also carried buckets of a type of wet, sticky clay that doesn’t dry completely in underground air, along with clay spreading knives. Then they would walk the stone ledges on either side of the trolley tracks and climb the tunnels’ walls and ceiling, spreading the clay, and sticking the glowing gems onto it to make pictures. 

The trolley tunnels went around the square shaped perimeter of each under-village and strait through the expansive solid dirt and rock borders between them. Each team of artists were only to work within the tunnel that went alongside the section they were assigned to. The Guardians assigned the most skilled and passionate artists to work in the much lengthier tunnels between under-villages.  The artist teams assembled the pictures in a fast paced but perfectly coordinated system. They had to work quickly because all the tunnels in the village group had to be decorated by sunset when the trolley system opened. 

After transportation closes at sunrise, the artists have to go back into the tunnels with their buckets, and take down all the gemstones. Most of the clay comes off the tunnel’s interior with them, so the artists don’t bother with scraping away the remaining clay. The gems are then washed and reorganized at the trolley stops, ready to become new art creations for the next night. 

Mell May and Artheena always wanted to go down to the under-village in the evening to watch the gemstone artists work, but according to most grungols, being up before sunset is insanely early. Neither Audry and her parents, nor any of the vervetts’ other grungol friends were able to drag themselves out of bed at such a time, to take them down to the under-village. 

Below the beauty of the lit up artwork is the not-so-beautiful trolley tracks. To us, they would look like a nightmarish mess of neglected filth. Between the stone ledges, the bottoms of the trolley tracks are caked with a thick, slimy layer of dark olive green algae that stays submerged in about two Earth inches of murky water. The water is also polluted with drown insects and the gunky remains of those that got crushed beneath trolley wheels, and urine and feces from when animals jump down from the ledges to take a drink. To the grungols, however, this nasty mess isn’t offensive. It’s a part of nature. The excrement and dead bugs nourish the algae and keeps it flourishing and super slimy, which keeps the underground trolley system the speediest, most convenient form of transportation in the land. 

Artheena once wanted to be a trolley driver when she was ten. She’d heard of vervetts who had adapted to living a fully nocturnal lifestyle and became grungols’ trolley drivers. However, she imagined herself going about the whole work night with a little baggy of pot paree tied over her nose to block out the yeasty, moldy salad smell of the tracks. Despite the smell, being a trolley driver seemed like one of the coolest jobs in the world. They got to chit chat with passengers and admire glowing artwork all night, while driving a fun vehicle that could zoom down the tracks as fast as the wind. 

While the trolley’s slick slate wheels promoted this wind speed, its mushroom wood body promoted both speed and aerodynamics. This ivory colored wood was made from a giant species of underground mushrooms which were dried and then baked until they became a material that was as hard as lumber but lighter in weight. Almost everything inside the trolley was made of mushroom wood too: the passengers’ benches, the driver’s seat, the dashboard and the drawers below it, and even a few of the trolley’s inner mechanics. 

Artheena loved the feeling of the brisk underground air as it buffered through the speeding trolley’s open windows. The glass windshield was the only solid window on these trollies. The rest of the windows were square shaped window holes. Being that they are underground, there’s no need to have to keep the vehicles closed up. They’re not exposed to surface elements like rain, humidity, and strong winds that would blow in dirt and debris. Sure, underground critters sometimes wander into the trollies, or they’ll hitch a ride, but this doesn’t happen often enough to become a nuisance. Mell May got squeamish if she spotted a hairy spider on the trolley ceiling, or a big black millipede lurking beneath the benches, but Artheena was there to protect her. Having the gifted ability to telepathically communicate with animals, if Mell May didn’t like the looks of a hitch hiking creature, Artheena would tell it to keep its distance.     

Artheena also thought it would be cool to be a trolley driver, because she liked the thought of how fun it would be to operate the destination panel every night. When she and Mell May first started riding the trollies, she used to have the drivers let her play with the destination panel for a few moments, before it was time to start moving. Mell May didn’t understand what the big fascination was, and she and Audry used to poke fun at Artheena about it. 

A vertical row of sixteen horizontal bars was painted down the left side of the dashboard. Each bar was labeled with an under-village’s name, and color coded with the under-village’s trolley ticket color. On the right side of the color coded bars were sixteen little ribbed wooden horizontal bars. Each bar had a row of four flippable, rectangle shaped dials around it. The dials were labeled either NORTH, SOUTH, WEST, or EAST on one side, representing the four sections of under-village, and the other side was blank. Every time passengers were dropped off at a trolley stop and new passengers came aboard, the driver would flip the dials that marked the completed destinations to the blank side, and flip the dials that marked the new destinations section-side up. 

Since everyone on the trolley now was going to the North Section of Under-Village 8, all the dials on the destination panel had been flipped to their blank side, except for one that said, NORTH next to the yellowish-green Under-Village 8 bar on the dashboard. 

Artheena liked the trolley drivers’ work schedule too. The Guardians strongly discourage overworking, because too much work induces too much stress. Stress, Velva Leenans believe, makes a person more vulnerable to Jyoseppy’s influence—The entity in charge of the negative side of creation who is kind of like the equivalent to the devil. So the Guardians schedule trolley drivers to work a full night—from sunset to sunrise—every other night, and work half-nights in between. The half-night shifts rotated with drivers sometimes working the first half of the night and sometimes the second. At the end of the shift, the early half-night driver wouldn’t pull into the trolley compound, but just pull up to it. A driver doing the latter half-night shift would be there waiting to take over. Running the system this way allowed drivers to spend plenty of time with their families and friends, and have the free time to just enjoy life. 

One thing that didn’t appeal to little Artheena was, all during their shift, drivers were never to leave their trollies unless they got sick or injured during their commute and weren’t able to continue driving. However, working conditions were still kept humane. There was a bathroom in the back of every trolley and sixty-four trolly stops in the village group where drivers could get something to eat or drink. Every driver keeps a bell with a very high pitched ring in one of the drawers beneath the dashboard. They could simply pull up to a trolley stop and ring the bell. The sound could easily carry into the stop and pierce through bustling crowd noise. Then a trolley stop assistant would get the driver whatever they wanted from the stop’s food and drink venders and deliver it to them. 

All of the vehicles are to stop commuting by a little bit before sunrise and brought back to the trolley compound, which is in every under-village’s West Section. Once at the compound, the drivers thoroughly clean and sanitize the trollies, inside and out. They even wash the algae slime from the wheels. Then they’d count up all the tickets they received throughout the night. Each under-village destination and the names of who traveled where were all put in record books, which were stored in a filing system in the compound owners’ office. Every ten nights, Guardians would come and collect these records. All the used paper trolley tickets were put in one large compound communal bin where they were collected and added to public compost, which nourished the many plant lives among the under-villages’ public crop farms, parks, and the landscaping around East and West Section buildings. 

Artheena smiled to herself, thinking back about her trolley driver phase from when she was ten as she continued looking out the window. Now the tunnel walls were a forest of golden yellow trees. The outlines of the trees’ leaves formed words of praise toward Jumellica—The entity kind of equivalent to God. Being at the age of fourteen, her life as a ten-year-old seemed so long ago. 

She remembered how she was so into her trolley driver aspirations, one of the neighbors made her a wooden toy grungols’ trolley that was big enough for her to sit in and drive, along with room for passengers. It was made of regular wood instead of mushroom wood. Its wooden wheels were painted and polished to resemble slate. It didn’t have a pretend bathroom in back, and it only had two passengers’ benches instead of sixteen, but Artheena was far from disappointed. It was her favorite toy for two-and-a-half seasons. It even had a destination panel with flippable dials, and a smaller toy version of a turn whistle. She used to spend lengthy periods of the day pedaling her trolley down the teppid stone garden paths. Sometimes Mell May and one of their friends from the neighborhood were the passengers, and sometimes Artheena took hers and Mell May’s dolls and stuffed animals for a ride. At the end of her shift, she parked her trolley among a cluster of trees and tall shrubs in the back yard, which made the perfect pretend compound. She and Mell May snuck out during the night to play with the trolley too, taking Audry for rides with them. Artheena just had to be careful to not blow the turn whistle until they were enough of a distance from the house where she wouldn’t risk waking the parents up. 

After two-and-a-half seasons, Artheena’s trolley driver enthusiasm fizzled out. Sure, it seemed like a cool job, and she loved staying up late. But after reading more about this contribution, she didn’t think she’d ever want to have to adapt to becoming fully nocturnal like a grungol. Grungols are always great company, and their under-villages are some of the most beautiful, uplifting places to be. However, being nocturnal would mean that she’d miss out on a lot of time with her family and her friends on the surface, and a lot of things about living in her village she enjoyed. 

Artheena remembered that summer evening when she informed a couple Guardian dolls that she needed some vacation time from driving the trolley, and that she was thinking of changing contributions. After promising the dolls that she would let them know what she decided to do soon, she parked the toy trolley at its compound for the last time. Like human children, vervett children are fickle and get sidetracked by new interests and other types of play. The toy trolley was forgotten about until a violent summer storm struck Village 3 one night. The next morning when Artheena, Mell May, and their parents went out into the yard to clean up the wreckage, they discovered the smashed remains of the abandoned toy trolley beneath a fallen tree. Artheena and Mell May felt so terrible and so guilty about this, they cried. 

BOOM

A sound like an Earthling’s gunshot, as a solid wall of green algae briefly appeared in front of the trolley snapped Artheena out of her thoughts and made Mell May jump and scream. The trolley abruptly stopped. As suddenly as it appeared, the wall of algae sank down and disappeared back into the track. Artheena couldn’t help giggling at Mell May.  

“What’s so funny?” her sister asked. 

“Seriously, Mell May,” said Artheena. “We’ve been riding these trollies for how many years, and you still scream when the driver puts up a stopper?” This wasn’t what she was really giggling about. While looking back through her reminiscent thoughts, she had been listening to Mell May rattle on about a far fetched dream she had that she and Leeandro Paul were married and living in the most extravagant house that was surrounded by gardens of exotic plant lives from all over the world.

Mell May stuck out her tongue at her and made a fart noise. “I was so into telling Audry about my Leeandro Paul dream that, yeah, it startled me.” 

Enjoy him in your dreams, while it lasts, Artheena thought. As if he would ever go for a freckly faced dingbat like you. Artheena truly loved her sister, and they were as close as grass to the ground. But secretly, she didn’t always think very highly of Mell May. 

These trollies have no breaks. Instead, whenever the vehicle needs to come to a sudden stop, the driver feeds the algae track its favorite food—A species of dark turquoise algae that the dark olive green algae aggressively preys upon. Among the drawers below the dashboard, the driver keeps a drawer well stocked with solid balls of dormant, dried turquoise algae, about the size of tennis balls. A ball of this algae has to be thrown down onto the track in front of the moving trolley with precise timing and speed, in order to make the trolly safely come to a stop at the right moment. The dark green algae immediately rises up from the track and forms into a solid wall—a stopper—as it ambushes and consumes the turquoise algae within an Earth second. The emerging algae wall is solid enough to stop a speeding trolley, and it also has the right amount of softness to cushion the trolley, and anyone inside it, from the sudden impact. The loud boom is the sound of how quick and forceful the algi’ ambush is before it goes back into the rest of the track. 

Everyone watched as a creature that would look to us like a shaggy black platypus, awkwardly wallowed away from the front of the vehicle and across the track. An odd looking rodent with tiny, pointy ears, Grayish-blue and white striped fur, and a body shape that resembled a miniature brontosaurus was clamped in the shaggy creature’s bill. The creature leaped onto the stone ledge on the other side of the tunnel, vigorously scraped the algae slime off its feet, and scampered away with its meal. 

Then the driver peddled the trolley back into motion. Soon they were about to turn a corner and head through the lengthy tunnel that went strait through the solid dirt and rock border between the South side tunnel of Under-Village 3 and the North side tunnel of Under-Village 7, which, of course, would then lead strait into the North side tunnel of Under-Village 8. The driver grabbed the black crystal turn whistle, which was attached to the dashboard by a stretchable cord, and blew into it. The wavering, high pitched sound it produced was like that of Earth’s car alarms. The sound echoed loudly through the tunnel, its piercing pitch reverberating along the walls and ceiling, making it seem like the glowing artwork was mimicking the whistle. Since the trolley tracks aren’t divided into separate lanes, drivers blow the turn whistle before turning into a tunnel, just in case another driver might be on the same side of the track but turning out of the tunnel in the opposite direction. Then that other driver could slide their trolley out of the way onto the other side of the track and safely pass. Drivers also blow the whistle to let other drivers know that they’re back-peddling, or close behind them. 

Mell May, Artheena, and Audry found it amazing how fine tuned trolley drivers’ ears are. To them, the echoing of the turn whistle doesn’t echo any differently than any other loud noise would in a tunnel. Trolley drivers, on the other hand, could tell exactly which side of a tunnel a whistle blowing driver is about to turn into, how far away they are, and whether it’s a trolley making a turn or backing up. 

The driver accelerated the trolley to its highest speed once they were in the lengthier tunnel. It’s best to go as fast as possible through such tunnels, because it’s a long, strait lined ride with no trolley stops. 

The tunnel through the border welcomed passengers with the most brilliantly lit sea scape. The whole ceiling was covered in blue gems with an occasional giant golden-yellow, or silver-white sea creature swimming above them. On the sides of the tunnel all three colors of gems had been made into countless different kinds of sea plants, coral reefs, interesting rocks, and more sea creatures swimming by. 

In a few short moments, they were joined by another trolley that must’ve came from Under-Village 1 or Under-village 2. The other trolley was heading in the same direction but was on the other side of the track. It was full of the joyful sounds of grungols singing and clapping in rhythm. They were singing an old Jumellica praising song that to us would kind of sound like gospel music. 

My baby has a backwards hand 

My baby has a backwards hand 

My baby has a backwards hand, but he can clap to the music of Jumellica’s song 

My baby has a crooked foot 

My baby has a crooked foot 

My baby has a crooked foot, but he can dance to the music of Jumellica’s song 

My baby has a buck toothed smile 

My baby has a buck toothed smile 

My baby has a buck toothed smile, but he can sing with the music of Jumellica’s song 

My baby has a happy heart 

My baby has a happy heart 

My baby has a happy heart, because he’s blessed by the music of Jumellica’s song 

Artheena used to think the lyrics to that song were kind of funny, when she was little. Now they sent a chill down her back, as they reminded her of those horrific pictures of children with birth defects she’d seen that pediatrics contributor looking through, while they were in the trolley stop waiting area. How could Jumellica, the creator of all things beautiful and positive, let those poor children be born that way? 

Her trolley driver broke into singing and clapping along, but clapping with only his lower hands while his upper hands stayed on the steering wheel. A split moment later, the rest of the trolley joined in, even Artheena. Singing Jumellica praising songs always lifted any troubling thoughts away. She had to have faith that the good entity will help doctors come up with the cures and medical care those children need, so they could go on to live normal, happy lives. 

The sound of a few dozen four-handed grungol passengers all clapping at once echoed into the tunnel like the clapping of an audience fit for a huge auditorium. Goofy Mell May stopped clapping and stomped her feet on the floor while slapping her hands against the back of the seat in front of them, to try to sound as loud as the grungols. 

For the rest of the journey, they all sang one Jumellica praising song after another, making the festively lit tunnels echo with happy music. It didn’t seem long before the driver began beating his lower hands on a set of exceptionally loud bongo drums below the dashboard. “Here we are! Under-Village 8!” he sang. He had stopped peddling the trolley at some point in their journey to slow it down. Now they were gently coasting towards Under-Village 8’s North Section trolley stop. Still playing the bongos, he moved the peddles backwards for a split moment to give the wheels the right amount of resistance to make the trolley stop moving forward. Then they were at the entrance. 

The forty passengers exchanged good-nights and praises to Jumellica with the trolly driver as they stepped out of the vehicle and onto a stone ledge that lead them into the same type of short, dark, cavernous hallway as the one they walked through in Under-Village 3, when they were boarding the trolley. “Hi everyone! Welcome to Under-Village 8!” said the commute coordinator, who was a middle-aged grungol woman this time. “You all sure look happy. You must be excited about wherever you’re going tonight.”

They all talked at once about Audry’s mom’s cousin’s 167th birthnight. 

“It’s Jill’s birthnight? Jumping Jumellica,” said the coordinator, clasping her upper hands. “I wish I wasn’t working tonight, so I could crash the party.” They all laughed. “By the way, I heard you guys singing as you were pulling up, and I must say, you sounded better than Bay Sah Vore.” 

“Thaaaaank yoooouuuu.” Audry, and a few other party guests who knew about the grungol boy band, sang in a capella harmony. 

“You’ll have to excuse me,” said the coordinator. “There’s about thirty or a hundred contributors waiting for a ride.” Jill’s party guests looked toward the waiting area and saw that the contributors’ section was surprisingly full, which is not something that happens very often in North or South Section trolley stops. “Under-Village 13!” she called out. About two-and-a-half dozen contributors holding indigo Under-Village 13 tickets all stood and gathered up stacks of skitzo cardboard boxes, and lugged them towards the entrance. They were distributing some kind of product to a store in Under-Village 13. Artheena, Mell May, Audry, and the rest of their crowd said their good-byes to the coordinator, and headed for the ticket holder’s desk to sign in. 

This trolley stop was brightly lit with well fed light stone fixtures, just like the other stop. It had the same stone waiting area benches and the same layout, but it looked just a bit different. The murals on the walls were paintings of different buildings and fun attractions, and different people. And instead of beds of flowering shrubs, the contributors’ section and leisure travelers’ section of the waiting area were divided by gorgeous, pearly white marble statues of Velva Leena’s flightless birds. 

The ticket holder at this stop was an awkwardly shy grungol boy who appeared to be no older than fifteen, and who seemed to have started his contribution as a ticket holder pretty recently. “Good evening…” he said, his voice awfully quiet. “…Are you, uh… checking in?…” Audry’s parents nodded. Without another word, he handed them the book they had to sign their full local names in, so the Guardians could keep track of when villagers arrived at their travel destinations. 

Then they were off to the party at last… 

*** 

Thanks for reading! I know that was a bit long, but I was enjoying writing it so much, it was hard to pick a spot in my mental movie for where to end. Coming soon is the forth and final installment. This story and other future fic-fact based stories in this series won’t be in any of the actual HECCTROSSIPY books, but some of their happenings and details do tie in with the novel(s) 

Love you all! Post you soon! 

Come write with me in the Writers Mastermind!

PART 2 of 🚎🚎 The Trolley Tracks Are Alive

And now back to… 

The Trolley Tracks Are Alive… 

Starring Artheena, Mell May, and Audry from HECCTROSSIPY book 1 The Legend of the Land

BLOGGER’S NOTE: I think I messed up on the way I’d written last post’s title. The block editor only let me write the blog series title in the title block, but I couldn’t put the story title below it in the same block. Instead, the story title ended up in a paragraph block. I can’t see what I’m doing. Did that look weird? Oops, tee hee. 

So anyway, last we left off, Artheena and Mell May experienced their first thrill of the evening—going to their village’s Music Club to see their latest crush, Leeandro Paul, in concert. Their Mom didn’t want them to go to anymore of his shows when she found out that He was disrespectful towards authority during his performance, which lead to a family dispute. Then later on, the girls snuck out while their parents were asleep to visit their grungol friend, Audry, and tell her about the concert. This lead to an impulsive decision to go to a huge party in Under-Village 8. 

Now the adventure continues at Under-Village 3’s South Section trolley stop… 

***  

The trolley stop was an enormously expansive cave room. Looking almost as big as Audry’s massive cave home, but with no interior walls and hallways to divide the place into different rooms. Well fed light stone fixtures hung from the ceiling, filling the room with welcoming bright light. Colorful murals were painted all over the smooth stone walls of happy grungol families enjoying themselves at Under-Village 3’s most popular restaurants, activity clubs, parks, and other places around the under-village that would appeal to travelers. The trolley stop had several large play areas for children of different age groups to keep the young ones entertained during a long wait. Between the play areas and the waiting area, a few dozen venders sat at wooden tables, selling all kinds of things for travelers’ convenience and enjoyment. Some venders sold snacks, like fruit, baked goods, and candy. Some had things to keep people entertained during a long wait or a long commute, like puzzle books and card games. There were spare travelers’ hygiene and camping supplies, and even stuff for babies on the move, like chewing sticks for teething grungol infants. A vender selling flawless water and disposable resin coated skitzo cardboard cups, also had huge jugs of spare well water for grungols who needed their water bottles refilled but didn’t have time to make a trip to the under-village well to do so, before their trolley came. 

Mell May and Artheena couldn’t help smiling when they entered the trolley stop. There were quite a few other grungol families there with kids, happy to take advantage of the schools being closed for repair and inspection as a means of opportunity to visit long-distant relatives or old friends. Every grungol was in a good mood, as usual, chattering and cracking jokes while they mingled about or sat on the stone benches in the waiting area. Some of the adults played and ran a muck with the children in the play areas. On one of the benches, an elderly grungol man strummed a stringed instrument and sang an old Jumellica praising song. His singing was terribly off key, but he sang with whole-hearted, Jumellica admiring spirit. A group of small children, who looked between the ages of three and five, held hands and danced in front of the old man, singing along with him in sweet sounding, little voices. A baby grungol barked and wiggled around like an Earthling puppy, looking at the vervett girls with joyful curiosity as his parents rolled his carriage past them. The trolley stop was such an uplifting place to be and was a big part of what made underground traveling so fun and exciting. 

The only thing that seemed out-of-place among such a utopian scene was the assertive organic smell that wafted into the room from the trolley tunnel. It smelled like a mixture of yeast, mold, and salad greens. This was the scent of the living trolley tracks, which were made of wet, slimy algae. The extreme slipperiness of the algae induced the trollies’ speed. When Mell May and Artheena first started going on travel adventures with Audry and her family, they found the smell of the algae tracks unbearably rank and breathed through their mouths during their whole commutes. It took a year or so and more underground travel experience to get used to the funk. Artheena had grown to actually like the trolley track smell, because it was linked to many happy memories.    

“It’s the #5 South Section 2,439 family,” said the ticket holder, giving Audry and her parents a friendly smile as they got to the front of the line at her desk. “And I see you’ve got your adopted vervett daughters with you.” 

“Hi, Andrill.” said Mell May and Artheena, who were standing behind Audry’s parents. 

“Nice to see you girls again,” said Andrill. “What’s your destination for this evening?” 

“Under-Village 8, North Section,” said Audry’s dad. “We’re aaalll going to the North Section of Under-Village 8.” He waved an upper arm at the long line of Jill’s birthnight guests behind the vervetts. 

“Oh my, all of you?” said Andrill, looking amazed. “I hope I have enough Under-Village 8, North Section tickets. What’s the big event?” 

“It’s my cousin Jill’s birthnight.” said Audry’s mom. 

“It’s Jill’s birthnight?” repeated the ticket holder. “Well, tell her I said, happy birthnight. I’d came across your cousin a few times when she visited Under-Village 3. What a character. So Under-Village 8, North Section…”

Behind her desk was a wooden shelving unit that held several orderly rows of cave moss paper tickets that were about the size of Earth’s credit cards. They were all one-way trip tickets, but they went to each section of the fifteen other under-villages in Group 4. The tickets for each destination were color coded in rainbow order. Tickets to the sections of Under-Village 1 were pink, tickets to Under-Village 2’s sections were pinkish-red, Under-Village 4 was reddish-orange, Under-Village 5 was orange, and so on. The printing on the tickets was red, which was Under-Village 3’s color. Andrill took a short moment to scan the shelves until she removed a wad of yellowish-green tickets. On one side of the ticket, Under-Village 3, South Section to Under-Village 8, North Section was printed in red ink. The other side was blank for the traveler to write, what’s known as their full local name, which begins with what village or under-village they live in, the name their parents gave them, and their house number. On this weird world, house numbers identify people in place of last names. 

The newly pealed ink twig from the ticket holder’s desk got passed along from one birthnight guest to another as each scribbled his or her full local name on the back of their ticket. Each also gave Andrill two coins. Two coins was the price to pay for any contribution that was a type of service. Most threw in a little extra payment of Thank You coins, because grungols are just kind and generous like that. Audry, who always had a strangely above-average amount of wealth for a kid her age, gave Andrill several large handfuls of Thank Yous. The vervetts didn’t bring any money with them, but their wealthy grungol friend had no problem paying their way. 

As Andrill suspected, there weren’t enough Under-Village 3, South Section to Under-Village 8, North Section tickets. But that was no setback. Her grown son, Droft, worked as a trolley stop assistant. She called on him to get some more of the tickets from the storage closet.  Cousin Jill really had a lot of guests. The party was going to be, as we say, a big blow-out. 

“How many of you are there?” Droft asked, coming back to the ticket holder’s desk with the extra tickets along with more to put on the shelf. Audry put a large pile of Thank Yous on the desk for him. 

“There’s fifty-one,” Andrill answered him. “It’s Under-Village 8 Jill of #11 North Section 3,009’s birthnight tonight. Did you know that?”                 

“Oh, that’s fantastic,” said Droft, with a smile. “How old is she? one-hundred-fifty? Two-hundred?” 

“You’re close,” said Audry’s mom. “She’s a hundred-and-sixty-seven.” 

“Well, tell her I said, happy birthnight,” he said. “And thank you, sweet Audry. If only you were a year older, so I could marry you.” Audry smiled. So we have fifty-one leisure travelers going to Under-Village 8.” The #5 South Section 2,439 family nodded. Droft went to report this to the Commute Coordinator, who was standing by the entrance to the trolley tunnel, way on the other side of the spacious room. The other forty-six grungols in the birthnight party group added Thank You coins to Droft’s pile before taking their seats in the waiting area. 

The two vervetts grabbed Audry by the shoulders. “We saw Leeandro Paul again at the Music Club,” said Artheena, as she and Mell May eagerly lead the grungol to sit between them on one of the benches. “It was so awesome. I wish you could’ve been there.” 

“And get this, he was dressed up like a Guardian,” said Mell May. 

Audry gasped. “Did he get in trouble for that?” 

“No, the Guardians didn’t care,” said Artheena. “Nobody was offended at all, except for Mom. Boy, did she have a hissy fit when we told her.” 

“If she could’ve came with us to the Music Club, she wouldn’t have been offended,” said Mell May. “That Guardian outfit looked so sexy on him. He’s got to be the hottest guy on Velva Leena. Praise Jumellica. And surprise, surprise, we think he likes Artheena.” 

“Oh, he does like me,” Artheena said, sounding cocky. “He was staring at me from the stage. The way he looked at me absolutely blew my mind. Then we made eye contact. It was crazy how it happened…” Artheena and Mell May went on talking their grungol friend’s ear off about the Leeandro Paul concert for the rest of their time spent waiting for a trolley. 

The waiting area was divided into two sections. Long, colorful flower beds that were edged with glittering rocks separated them. One section was nearer to the trolley tunnel’s entrance. This was for traveling contributors—Those whose profession involved a lot of traveling. Because they were traveling to serve or entertain the public, they boarded the trollies first. The other section, which was behind where contributors sat, was for leisure travelers—Those who were going to other under-villages to visit people, or just for the fun of traveling and having new experiences. A wide aisle that lead strait to the tunnel entrance split both sections evenly down the middle. All the stone benches faced the aisle and were aligned in sets of two dozen rows that were comfortably spaced apart. 

Luckily for the eager party goers in the leisure travelers’ section, there weren’t that many contributors. So they weren’t going to have too long of a wait. A majority of contributors took trollies from the East and West Section stops where all the businesses were. The North and South Section stops were open to contributors, because they often make a lot of friends all over the village group during their travels. And sometimes it’s nice to visit with these friends before or after tending to their contribution. 

A group of thirty or so tall grungol men and women, who appeared to be a professional sports team, occupied several contributors’ benches. They all held large magnetic rackets and net bags of different sizes and colors of balls. The sport they played was like a chaotic sort of mob tennis. Artheena and Mell May had seen this sport played before at a park in the under-village East Section, but they’d forgotten what it was called. The different balls had different magnetic strengths that were either attracted to the rackets or repelled by them. As the team players animatedly discussed strategies for their up-coming game, some of them did tricks with the magnetically repellant balls, making them hover and spin above their rackets. 

On a bench across the aisle from the sports team, a grungol man sat by himself, reading notes from a notebook and looking through a stack of medical charts. He was preparing to give a lecture about, what appeared to be advanced pediatric medicine, at a doctors’ training school. As he looked through his charts, unfolding them and folding them, Mell May, Artheena, and Audry politely pretended that they didn’t see the pictures and diagrams of vervett and grungol children with gruesome looking birth defects and diseases. There were kids who, instead of having two eyes, were born with multiple abnormally tiny eyes cramped in each eye socket. One picture was of a newborn vervett with freakishly enlarged hands that were covered in bulging veins and boney nodules. Another picture showed a crying grungol toddler who looked like he was in a lot of pain. His enlarged gums were bleeding and looked as though they had been shredded. If Mell May, Artheena, and Audry weren’t sitting among such a happy crowd in such fun and cheerful surroundings with the excitement of Jill’s party to look forward to, their wonderful mood would’ve been ruined by seeing those upsetting pictures. 

The sound of a fast drum beat being played on exceptionally loud bongo drums echoed from the trolley tunnel and into the enormous cave room. This sound meant that a trolley was pulling up to the stop. “Welcome to Under-Village 3!” the commute coordinator happily shouted, as the newcomers got off the trolley. 

Audry gasped as she watched a group of very young grungol men, all in their late teens and early twenties, entering the trolley stop. “Jumping Jumellica, that’s Bay Sah Vore.” she whispered to her vervett friends, a dreamy look in her silver eyes. A hush fell over the crowd when other grungols noticed them too. Bay Sah Vore was the equivalent of a grungol boy band. 

“Goood eeev-niiing Un-der-viiill-aaage-threeeeee…” Bay Sah Vore sang in acappella harmony, as they started down the long, wide aisle that went through the waiting area. Then their beautiful singing became more like a comedy musical, getting the whole trolley stop laughing as the group broke into singing silly verses off the tops of their heads, about all the lovely ladies in the room that they spotted, especially the only two who were vervetts, and how this trolley stop had the tastiest but lumpiest  muffins in the land, and their undying love for Andrill the ticket holder. One of the group members patted a very embarrassed Mell May on the head, before the boy band strode to the ticket holder’s desk to sign their names in a  book that recorded when travelers arrived at their destination. 

“Under-Village 9!” called out the Commute Coordinator. The Pediatrics lecturer guy quickly gathered up his charts and notebook, and his green Under-Village 9 ticket, and headed for the tunnel entrance. “Under-Village 14!” The sports team stood up all at once and walked towards the entrance with synchronized steps, like a giant communal organism. Each held an indigoish-purple Under-Village 14 ticket in a lower free hand as their other three hands lugged their sporting equipment. “All leisure travelers going to Under-Village 8!” the coordinator called out. “The next available trolley is all yours, because all our other leisure travelers are going to places among the southern half of Group 4! Although not all of you will fit! So I’m sorry to say that some of you will have to take a separate trolley to Under-Village 8!” 

“That’s no problem! Audry’s dad called out to him. 

Each trolley had sixteen bench seats, but the seats were wide and allowed the vehicle to fit up to forty adults. There were fifty-one people in the birthnight party group. Artheena, Mell May, and Audry didn’t care which trolley they took, as long as they could enjoy the ride together. 

A short few moments after the trolley with the sports team and medical lecturer whooshed away, the loud bongos sounded again as another trolley pulled up. “Welcome to Under-Village 3!” shouted the coordinator, as a large family consisting of four generations of adults noisily ambled inside. They merrily exchanged greetings and hello waves with other grungols in the room, while trailing down the waiting area aisle like a four-generation family parade that went from eldest to youngest. 

“Under-Village 8!” called out the coordinator. 

“Come on, girls.” said Audry’s parents, leading the three best friends to the first trolley to the party. 

Mell May, Artheena, and a crowd of thirty-eight grungols exited the enormous, bright room and went down a short, dark, cavernous hallway. At the end of the hallway, there trolly sat idle on it’s dark olive green algae track. The tunnel wall behind it was lit up with silver-white and warm gold glowing gemstone pictures of carnivorous creatures with monkey appendages, swinging through forest trees. The vervetts’ hearts sped up with excitement as they all began to board the trolley and give the driver their tickets. 

*** 

And that concludes Part 2. Things get even more weird and alien in Part 3, so get ready for a journey that will trip you out. 

Love you all! Post you soon! 

Come write with me in the Writers Mastermind!

🚎ONCE UPON AN APPENDIX REMOVAL: Story #1

The Trolley Tracks Are Alive PART 1

Hello, dear, sweet readers. It’s story time. Yeah, I’m talking to both kid and adult WordPress goers. 

Now that the Velva-pedia series has officially been canceled. Here is it’s replacement. 

This story takes place a little over a year before the events in HECCTROSSIPY book 1  The Legend of the Land. Artheena and Mell May, the vervett sisters, and their grungol best friend, Audry, are all fourteen and innocently oblivious to the horrors that await them when they reach adulthood.  

*** 

Artheena and Mell May broke into a sprint, halfway down their street. The jewel dappled, turtle-like shells on their backs glittered and gleamed in the light of the three moons, and their long hair trailed through the air behind them, like com-it tails. Picking up their pace to a speed faster than Earth’s cheetahs, the two vervetts’ nearly human forms became one glinting blur. The fragrant, invigorating spring night air whooshed past them, like a powerful storm wind as they continued building up their speed until they were a few steps away from their glowing teppid stone front walking path. Then like giant grasshoppers, they did a simultaneous high leap through the air. Higher than what would be possible for any human, well over the height of their house’s rooftop. 

“I love Leeandro Paul!” Artheena shouted, whooping as she leaped through the air again and landed further up the walking path. 

Mell May whooped with her, leaping and landing just a little ways ahead. “I’m Village 16 Mell May of South Section 40,346!” she jokingly shouted as she sprang through the air again. 

“Whatever! Keep dreaming!” Artheena teased, catching up with her sister and grabbing the edge of her shell, pushing her back to the ground. Mell May landed with the agility of a cat. In a split moment, she was high into the air again, pushing Artheena to the ground in return. Artheena wasn’t so agile, landing on her shell with her limbs and rear end in the air, spinning like a break dancer. Her soiled shirt, which had been rolled up and tied tightly around her waist, limply flapped about like a lizard’s broken wing. Mell May went on ahead of her, leaping towards their house and singing the catchy chorus to the latest popular Leeandro Paul song. 

The South Section 5,898 sisters always leap-raced each other home, after they came back from their favorite place to be—Village 3’s Music Club. It was a thing they started when they were little girls, yet old enough for their parents to decide that they could go to the music club by themselves. By now, they were fourteen, and leap-racing each other home was silly and childish, but it was tradition. 

Artheena quickly caught up with Mell May, both sang in tandem as they made their final leap toward the front door. She caught the knob and flung the door open before her feet hit the walking path’s end. 

They immediately stopped singing once they stepped inside the house. Their four-year-old kid brother, Willberry, was asleep in bed by this time of night.

Mom was in the sitting room, her shell turned toward the front door as she was busily bent over a row of small, slender wicker vases that she’d set along one of the couches. She wore a long nightshirt, and was washed up and ready for bed. The sweet, strawberry-like smell of her bathing herbs faintly emanated across the room. Using a tiny pair of scissors with blades as thin as needles, she carefully trimmed away any loose strands of wicker she had missed. These vases were her latest hand crafted wicker pieces, which the Guardians had scheduled her to deliver to the Home Decor & Housewarming Gift shop in the East Section, early the following morning. The vases were made of fine, straw-like wicker. They all had the same intricate leafy vine pattern made of died wicker sewn within Mom’s perfectly symmetrical weaving, but each pattern was a different color. These vases were for keeping paper flowers in, which was a traditional springtime household decoration all over Continent 15. 

“Hey, girls,” she put down her cutting tool and turned to greet Artheena and Mell May with a smile. “How was the concert?” 

“Awesome!” said Mell May, without toning down the volume of her enthusiasm. 

“Willberry is sleeping.” Mom reminded her, in a hushed voice. 

“Sorry.” Mell May whispered. 

“Leeandro Paul is so amazing.” Artheena gushed. 

“Yeah, and Artheena spilled diamond flower tea all over her shirt.” Mell May giggled. 

“It was crazy,” Artheena began. “There was this group of boys in front of the stage making the biggest idiots out of themselves, singing really badly. They were like…” Both girls pumped their fists in the air and barked mumbled nonsense in hushed voices. Mom cracked an amused smile. “I don’t know how Leeandro Paul was able to keep singing without laughing his shell off,” Artheena continued. “Or at least telling them, ‘Hey, you bunch of toilet bucket heads, shut up. You’re ruining my song.’” 

“I figured, since it was all boys up there, they would let me get close to the stage too.” She flashed a proud, nearly arrogant smile. “And they did. They stepped aside to make way for me, and…” Both girls inhaled and exhaled loudly with astounded expressions, as though they’d witnessed a miracle. “Me and Mell May got a head to toe glimpse at Leeandro Paul. It was the best moment of my life.” 

“Mine too,” said Mell May. “And he made eye contact with Artheena.” 

“He made eye contact with me,” Artheena echoed, a dreamy look in her eyes. “Leeandro Paul likes me. I tried to call out to him, but curse of Jyoseppy, I broke into a major hiccuping fit.” 

“Thank Jumellica one of the staff was nearby,” said Mell May, “I had him get me a goblet of diamond flower tea that I gave to Artheena, but when she went to take a drink…” They both burst into giggles. “She sneezed, big time, and got tea splattered all over her shirt and on some old lady’s ugly hat.” 

“Thank Jumellica that lady got in front of me, before Leeandro Paul saw me make a mess,” said Artheena. “She told the boys to quiet down, which gave me enough time to quick take off my sloppy shirt.” 

“I hope you apologized to that woman.” said Mom. 

“She disappeared into the crowd before I had the chance to,” said Artheena. “But I’m sure she has a swimming pool, or knows someone who has a pool that would be glad to remove the stains. So anyway, you wouldn’t believe this, and I wish you and Dad and Willberry could’ve been there to see it, but Leeandro Paul was dressed up like a Guardian.” 

What?!” Mom shouted with outrage, forgetting about not wanting to wake Willberry. “You’re right, I can’t believe it! How awful of him!” 

“It wasn’t awful. It was sexy.” Mell May defended. 

“Sure was.” Artheena agreed. 

“A villager imitating a Guardian is not sexy,” said Mom. “It’s wrong, and it’s insulting to authority.” 

“He could be my authority any time.” said Mell May. 

“Oh, yeah.” Artheena grinned. 

“This isn’t funny, girls!” Mom reprimanded. 

Mom, it’s no big deal,” Artheena argued. “He’s a performer. Performers ware costumes all the time.” 

“Yes, actors, Artheena,” said Mom. “Actors whose contribution is to play the part of a fictional character that’s scripted in a fictional play. Leeandro Paul wasn’t acting as a fictional Guardian character from a play script when he was doing his concert. Was he?” The girls exchanged looks that said, Ugh, parents. They knew that what he had done would be considered publicly offensive, but they felt their latest Music Club crush should be an exception to the rules. “So he was dressed up as a Guardian as himself, which I think is arrogant and disrespectful, and I don’t think I want you girls attending his shows anymore.” 

Mom! No!” Mell May protested. 

“The Guardians didn’t care!” Artheena argued. “If they did, they would’ve arrested him and escorted him off the stage, and they didn’t!” 

“Were there any Guardians around at the Music club, tonight?” Mom demanded. 

Yes!” the girls lied in unison. They couldn’t honestly answer that question, because they weren’t paying attention to whether or not if there were Guardians among the crowd when they could hardly take their eyes off of Leeandro Paul. 

“What’s going on out here?” Dad demanded, hurrying out of the bathroom. The sounds of a muffled argument from behind the closed bathroom door had alerted him to jump out of his bath and help resolve the problem. He was naked and dripping wet. Tiny leafy stems and pieces of grass from his bathing herbs stuck to his skin and hair. Artheena and Mell May snickered at the sight of him. 

“Dad, you forgot to weed your skin.” Artheena joked. Mell May burst into laughter, and then Mom. 

“Oops,” Dad laughed, looking down at his arms and chest. “I forgot to scrub off before getting out of the tub. So what’s going on out here? What are you three fighting about?” Mom told him about Leeandro Paul’s absurd and disrespectful performance and how she didn’t want the girls to attend his shows anymore, while Artheena and Mell May insisted that it was no big deal and Mom was blowing things out of proportion. 

“He might not ever do it again,” said Artheena. “It was just a costume. It might be his gimmick to dress in a different costume with each show. Next time he does a show in Village 3, he might come on stage dressed up like a poomditto bird for all we know. It’s no reason to stop allowing us to see his shows. Besides, if people were offended by him, he would’ve been booed off stage, and he wasn’t. They loved it.” 

“Yeah, especially us,” said Mell May. “And like we said, there were Guardians there, and they didn’t stop him. Please, Mom and Dad, please don’t make us have to stop seeing his shows. His music is so wonderful and uplifting, and it makes me and Artheena happy. And you know how happiness is the key to better empowering Jumellica’s positive energy.” 

“Maybe we should just let them go see him,” said Dad. “He’s just a Music Club singer. I never heard of performers being harmful and dangerous to the public. Yes, he had some nerve portraying himself as a Guardian, but he wasn’t hurting anybody. If he’s foolish enough to keep imitating authority, the only harm done would be brought onto himself.” 

Artheena and Mell May silently hoped to Jumellica that Leeandro Paul would perform in normal stage clothes from now on. 

“You’re right,” Mom sighed. “I guess it wouldn’t hurt to let the girls enjoy his music while it lasts, because I don’t think he’ll be performing much longer.” 

Both teenagers rejoiced, whooping and clapping and jumping up and down as they thanked their parents repeatedly. Mom and Dad couldn’t help laughing at how ridiculously passionate their daughters got over their Music club crushes. Then all four of them fell silent at once when they remembered that Willberry was sleeping. 

~~~ 

Artheena tossed her shirt into the pool with the rest of the day’s laundry. The living liquid would remove the tea stains overnight, and the shirt would be as good as new by the following morning. Then she and Mell May took their baths and swished some teeth wash, but they had no intentions of going to bed, especially not after the thrill of going to another Leeandro Paul concert. While taking a quick dip in the pool to let the liquid remove the bath water wetness from their hair, they made plans to sneak out and see what their grungol friend, Audry, was up to. They had to tell her all about the awesome concert. Audry had never went to a Leeandro Paul concert, but she’d heard about the alluring vervett singer/songwriter/musician from a few of her grungol friends who had seen him when he toured Group 1 a season or two ago. They said that even grungol girls were smitten with him.    

His deep aqua marine eyes were stupefying. His tall, lean muscled build and pretty-boy face made Artheena’s and Mell May’s hearts pound with desire. Blissful goosebump chills ran through their bodies at the sound of his melodic voice. Once they saw him and listened to him sing, they couldn’t get him out of their heads. Leeandro Paul was a new artist to their village group, but that night, he had the confidence and swagger as though the whole land was under his thumb—Like a Guardian. 

It was a school night, but Mell May and Artheena did their usual sneaking out routine that they had been getting away with since they were little. They were, what we Earthlings would call, night owls. After exchanging good-nights with their parents, they acted like they were going to bed. Once in bed, they waited for the sound of Mom and Dad’s bedroom door being closed, and then waited another few moments. Their parents were hard working, socially active people who also had an overly energetic four-year-old, so it didn’t take long for them to fall asleep. The girls would then slip out of bed and change into daytime clothes in the light of the moons and the teppid stone that glowed in the yards. 

Mell May’s room was at the front of the house, so she was the first to open her door as carefully and quietly as possible and creep towards Artheena’s room with silent footsteps. Artheena, the gifted one, always intuitively knew when Mell May was approaching. Then she’d sneak out of her room the same way. Both girls would creep across the house in silence until they snuck through the back door and were out on the teppid stone pool deck. The coast was clear when they were outside, and they didn’t have to be careful and quiet anymore. 

They hurried over to Audry’s favorite burrowing spot in their back yard and called out for her. Although she lived deep underground, grungols have an unusual sense of hearing. To them, every sound on the surface reverberates through every grain of dirt, allowing them to hear what goes on above ground from their under-village. 

Far below the South Section 5,898 family’s back yard, Audry was in her cave home, eating breakfast. The house was bustling with friends and relatives all preparing for a big night. It was Audry’s mom’s second cousin’s 167th birthday—Or rather, birthnight, since grungols are nocturnal. Through the noise of the chatter and clanking of breakfast dishes, Audry could hear the distant calls of her vervett friends on the surface. She excused herself from eating and hurried out of the house and down her street. One of her friends from around the neighborhood, a grungol boy named Brotell, came with her. 

“Ditching the party already?” Brotell teased, knowing how devotedly attentive Audry was to her two vervett friends. No matter what she was doing, she always dropped everything and burrowed up to the surface whenever Artheena and Mell May called her from their back yard. 

“Of course not,” said Audry, climbing up a neighbor’s wall garden. Maybe they’ll want to come to Jill’s party with us. They sound like they have something important to tell me.” 

Brotell climbed after her. Once she reached where the garden ended and the wall was bare dirt and rocks, Brotell was on the wall beside her. He was sometimes more attentive to her than she was to her vervett friends, which gave her the suspicion that he liked her. 

The two grungols then tightened every muscle in their bodies and flattened themselves against the wall. Their dog-like snoots pointed strait up toward the under-village ceiling, and their fluffy lopped ears were held firmly against their heads. They took a deep breath, closed their eyes and nostrils, and sped up the wall with all six limbs, faster than scurrying spiders. Their four remarkably powerful arms and two remarkably powerful legs allowed them to burrow through the dirt at a speed far beyond Earth’s digging machinery. They also had the ability to resolidify the dirt as they burrowed through it, never leaving behind any holes or dirt messes or unstable ground. 

“I know we’re earlier than usual,” Artheena yelled over the loud motor-like sound of the grungols’ burrowing, as they emerged to the surface. “But we have a long, amazing story to tell, and we need plenty of time to tell you it before you have to get ready for school. Hi, Brotell.” 

“Hey, girls.” he said, giving them a friendly, silver toothed smile. 

“There’s no school today,” said Audry. “The two and three-year-olds’ schools’ roofs started crumbling apart during the day, and several other schools for kids and adults have cracks in their walls and roof that the Guardians thought looked too threatening. So all the schools are undergoing inspections and repairs tonight, which is great.” She clapped all four furry, flat fingered hands. “Because tonight is cousin Jill’s birthnight! I’m so glad I don’t have to miss it. I hate when people’s birthnights are on a school night and I have to miss out on them.” 

“Thank Jumellica it was during the day when those kids’ schools caved in.” said Mell May. 

“Thank Jumellica,” Audry repeated. “Although I’m not surprised this happened. Our under-villages school buildings have been around for I don’t know how many hundreds or thousands of years. Probably since Group 4 was first built.” 

“Audry thought you girls might like to come to the party with us.” said Brotell. 

“Of course!” the vervetts said in unison. 

Mell May jumped onto Brotell’s back and got into the awkward but speed promoting burrowing position. Artheena jumped onto Audry’s back and did the same. In less than an Earth second, they were on Audry’s street. Moving through the ground at such speed felt more like moving through a strong blast of wind. It was a speed to fast to allow any dirt to cling to them. 

To us, the grungols’ under-village would look like a place where a race of mystical people from a fairy tale would live. The streets were made of silver-white crystal and bordered with glowing gem stones that were either silver-white, warm gold, or a soft shade of blue. The South Section street that the four teenagers walked down had scenic vertical gardens on either side. Hundreds of different species of colorful underground plants grew along the exterior walls of grungols’ cave homes. Most bore flowers and many other kinds of produce. 

“Audry and I invited a couple more extra guests!” Brotell announced over the crowd noise, as the four of them stepped through the curtain of pink and purple flowered vines that was Audry’s front door. 

Artheena and Mell May were greeted with many welcoming hellos and furry, four-armed hugs while Audry sat back down to finish her purely herbivore breakfast of three kinds of vegetable salads, bread made of ground nuts and seeds, and a stewed dark purple vegetable that was like a cross between turnips and Brussels sprouts. The vervetts helped themselves to some salad and sour fern & sweet berry tea as they mingled about the jam-packed kitchen, chatting with the party guests. 

Cousin Jill lived in the North Section of Under-Village 8. Mell May and Artheena had went to Jill’s house with Audry and her family only a few times, since they were ten years old. So they didn’t know her all that well, but they were still excited about visiting her. She was fun and bubbly and like a big kid. Best of all, she lived in a different under-village, which meant they got to ride an underground trolley. It was so much fun to ride the trollies. They sped along their slippery wet tracks as fast as the wind, and the walls and ceilings of the trolly tunnels were festively lit with glowing pictures and designs. 

After breakfast was finished, everybody pitched in with cleaning the dishes and the kitchen as quickly as possible. Then all the grungol guests strapped travel totes to their backs, filled with presents for cousin Jill, along with their coin holders and bottles of well water. And they were off to the trolly stop. 

*** 

Well, folks, that’s all for Part 1. I hope you enjoyed the read. Keep your eyes peeled on your WordPress Reader for Part 2, which will be coming soon. Want to know more about vervetts and grungols? Click the link below, and help yourself to a full length novel about them. 

Love you all! Post you soon!  

Come write with me in the Writers Mastermind!

👾My Writing Experiment Mutated!!👾

Hey, bloggers and blog readers! How is your weekend so far? Hey, other writers! How’s your writing struggles so far? Let me tell you about mine. I wonder how many of you other writers have brains that do unruly, crazy shit like this. 

In a previous post, I talked about my failed attempt at a blog series called Velva-pedia, which featured facts about the fictional planet in my sci fi drama book series. (Well, not quite a series yet. Right now there’s still only one book available. Book 2 is ready to undergo the last stage of preparation before publication, but my editor and proof reader are swamped with other projects at the moment.) Anyway, after I decided to no longer include an Appendices in my books after book 1, I thought it was a cool idea to blog about one fact or one fact category at a time to get readers on WordPress acquainted with the uniquely complex but pre-industrial world of Velva Leena. A world where indoor light fixtures and swimming pools are living organisms, about a third of the person population has some form of a psychic ability, and the people have a hive mentality, unlike us humans who are hardwired to be tribal. (Please bare with me, those who’d already read that post where I talked about this little marketing mishap learning experience. I know I’m being repetitious at the moment, but there’s an update to this story.) Anyhow, I hoped this blog series would attract interest towards my first book. Two posts in, I realized that the posts barely attracted interest themselves. So of course, they weren’t going to help improve book sales. It was time to try a new way to win you WordPress readers over, as a sci fi author. So I came up with the idea of taking those flat facts and including them in short story chronicles. 

Now here’s the update. 

The plan was to write each story short enough to be one blog post. So I started the first story, which involved factual details about Continent 15 grungols’ under-village trolley system, where the trolley tracks are a living thing. As a mental movie in my head, it played out as a short enough story. It was about a happy memory shared between the two vervetts, Artheena and Mell May, and their grungol friend, Audry, which took place a little over a year before the events of HECCTROSSIPY book 1 The Legend of the Land, and it involved a trolley ride to and from one of Audry’s relative’s birthnight party. 

Like the old saying goes, “A picture says a thousand words.” If it’s multiple pictures within a mental movie, sheesh! When I started transcribing my inner cinema into text, the words kept on multiplying like invasive little critters. One page turned into two, and then ten pages, and I’m still not finished with the trolley story. By the time I get to the ending, it’ll be an infinity too long, according to blog post standards. 

Dammit, why can’t I just keep my writing light, easy, and snappy? Why can’t I just get strait to the point, and begin the story with Artheena, Mell May, and Audry waiting for a trolley? Nooooooooo, that’s not how my brain wants to operate. The instant I start writing, all these added vivid details about the mental movie reveal themselves. Then I had to write about things like, why Mell May and Artheena were so eager to see their nocturnal BFF that night, and the fact that they had to sneak out of the house because it was a school night. And why Audry was off of school and able to attend this party. I couldn’t let the process of catching a trolley be like catching one on Earth and leave the details to the readers’ imagination. Instead, I ended up writing about what it’s like to be at an underground trolley stop on this different planet. What the place looks like and smells like, the simplified but very alien ticket system, how the two vervett girls were greeted by the jolly grungol trolley driver, and the list of vivid details goes on. So my little blog series project idea mutated, big time

I wish I had the talent for writing fast paced stories because that’s what sells, but I couldn’t write fast paced if the fate of my soul depended on it. So it’s time to change my blog series idea, yet again. 

I’m still going to write pre-hecctrossipy stories based on facts from book 1’s Appendix and Appendices removed from other books that are still in the making, but the stories will be divided into parts. At the beginning of a second part and any more parts that follow, I’ll give a brief, non vividly detailed recap on what happened previously. I don’t know how to link a present post with past ones yet. Sorry. The parts of these stories might not always be posted consecutively. I might take breaks from the story and write posts about other stuff in between. So you’ll need that recap to refresh your memory. 

I struggled to come up with a title for this series. At first, it was going to be called, Story-pedia. Then I thought of just simply calling it The Velva Leenan Chronicles, or Living with the Aliens—And the more I thought, the more lame the titles got. It took since around quarter till 4:00 this morning, but I think I have a title. It may be pretty awful too, but in a goofy, play-on-words sort of way. Because I was inspired to write these stories when I decided to discontinue my books’ appendices, I now dub the series, Once Upon an Appendix Removal. Now that’s a title that screams, “Huh???… What the…?” 

So, without further ado, coming up is my new-and-improved blog series debut… 

Come write with me in the Writers Mastermind!

🍳🥚 Bass-Ackwards Marketing! Oh, no! 🍳🥚

A few months ago, I decided to not include an appendix to anymore of the books in my HECCTROSSIPY series and my future DARK ADMIRATION series, and post facts about planet Velva Leena on this here blog. I called these posts Velva-pedia. My plan was to share facts about that world to try to get people interested in what life is like there, with the hope that they would click on the link to my book to get the full Velva Leena travel experience. 

I’ve only published two Velva-pedia posts, but those two were enough to make me realize that my little marketing idea was a stink bomb. Readers didn’t take to those posts like they do with my true story posts. I talked to my writing group about this, and come to find out, I had it all backwards. 

If your series takes place in a heavily detailed world—enough to where you could write whole bestiaries, travel guides, and pages and pages of all different other types of facts—you need to build enough of a fanfare first. It’s hardcore fans who appreciate that type of extra info about your world. Star Trek, Lord of the Rings, and Harry Potter have hardcore fans who love to know those additional personal details about the characters in their favorite worlds, and further facts about the native plants and animals, and historical chronology of the land, village, or planet. Casual readers, and especially those who are not familiar with your book’s great big fantastical world, most likely won’t be drawn in by strait facts about it. It’s no different than the infamous info dump. 

AAAH! When will I ever learn! 

I feel like I’m the only odd-ball who enjoys info dumps. They’re not all that pulse pounding and page turning, but for me, they often make the story feel more real. That’s why I made the stupid mistake of beginning my first novel with an info dump, the first time it was published. I thought it was a good idea to get readers familiar with the planet before they jump into the alien drama. Wrong! You don’t draw people in by overloading them with strait facts. They’re just not fun and entertaining. The book has been re-released since then, with the info dump moved to the back with the rest of the Appendices fact dumpage. Then here I go again with the Velva-pedia posts, attempting to lure readers in with info. (Seriously, barely-selling author.)

I realized too that those posts were not that fun and engaging. They didn’t have the drama and the flare of comedy that my true story posts have. So this leads to a new idea. 

I’m going to incorporate each fact into a short story involving the characters from my book series. Such as Artheena, Mell May, Audry, and Leeandro Paul. These stories won’t be in any of the books, but extra snippets of the characters’ personal lives. Some may take place in the past, during the characters’ childhoods, or further back when their parents were kids themselves. I’m hoping this will add more warmth and personality to whatever details about the planet are featured in each story, and it would be more relaxing and entertaining to read. Rather than a nerdily written educational article.      If the unearthly details aren’t the big attention getters, I hope that getting to know the characters more personally will be. Short stories over strait facts also means there’ll be flares of comedy and drama. Just writing about this new idea is getting my brain twirling with the extra stories my alien pals would like to share with you. 

Maybe I’m sounding a tad desperate, but that’s book marketing for you. It’s all about doing what you can to get your book noticed among the chaotic tsunamis of books that get released every second. 

And while we’re on the subject of books, I was looking back on my published blog posts and found one where I asked you all for feedback for what I had came up with so far for book 2’s blurb. I can’t believe that post was from all the way back in June!! Nearly a year ago! Oh, my freaking God! And book 2 STILL hasn’t come out yet. I swear, the second book truly does exist and it’s on its way. After my author/editor/super-human friend, Jo, got done editing the book by my birthday, I went over the edits. Then the holidays came, so I didn’t want to bother anyone about beta reading until January. I gave my beta readers until March to get the job done, because it’s such a gargantuan novel. This month, I’ve been fixing things that beta readers found confusing or unnecessary. I’ve been tweaking this and snipping off that, and ironing and stitching any overlooked holes in the story I could find. I promised myself that the draft WILL be ready to send to Jo to make a proof copy, BY APRIL. During the time my Mom and sister proof read it, I’ll have the final draft of the blurb done, and Jo will have the awesome cover ready. Then, fingers crossed, HECCTROSSIPY  book 2  The Will of the Dark Creator will be available on Amazon this summer. 

The writing business isn’t glamorous. Nor is it an instant ticket to fame and financial security, like it’s so annoyingly often portrayed on TV and even in books themselves. However, it’s worth every hard marketing lesson, every depressingly meager royalty payment, the frustration, the discouragement, the begrudging envy towards authors who seem to have the magical ability to shoot best-sellers out of their asses, the brain strain, the widening secretary butt, and the on-going frustration with myself over never being completely satisfied with my work and always wanting to re-edit it. It’s all worth it, for the love of the characters and their stories. 

More stories coming your way! Ones that take place on a planet across our galaxy, or on our own beautiful blue beloved, pollution stankin’ Earth! 

Love you all! Post you soon! 

Come write with me in the Writers Mastermind!

🍩Velva-pedia #2 Doughnut Popping Periscope Penises And Vibrating Palm Hairs

Welcome to the second Velva-pedia post. For those of you who don’t know what the hell this Velva-pedia thing is all about, I’ve decided to eliminate the appendices in the rest of my books and post facts about the world where Artheena, Mell May, Leeandro Paul, and the rest of the cast live on, on NO PICTURES ALLOWED. Since it’s the month of love, boys and girls, we’re going to learn about how extra terrestrials on the far away planet of Velva Leena do the wild thang. 

*** 

GRUNGOL SEX 

Alien description: dog-like head and facial features, lopped ears, silver herbivore teeth, flat rectangular torso, four arms, four flat fingers on each hand, two legs, four flat toes on each foot, whole bodies are covered in wiry fur except for the fur on the palms of their hands and the soles of their feet. That fur is short and bristly and can move voluntarily, like tens of thousands of powerfully gripping tiny fingers. Giving them the ability to manipulate the consistency of the ground, and the insect-like ability to climb walls and ceilings.

Grungols Spread Their Love: If we were able to visit grungols’ utopian underground civilizations, (under-villages), many humans might get the impression that all grungols must be bisexual. Males and females, males and males, females and females, no matter the gender, grungols are always walking arms-in-arms, hugging, petting, and nuzzling one another. In their society, it’s perfectly normal to see two grungol men cuddling on the living room couch, while just hanging out, or two grungol women taking a bath together and bathing one another. However, there is no sexual motives behind this behavior. They are the more honest, humble, and pure of heart race, compared to the more human-like vervetts. It’s a way of life among their utopian society to be very loving and affectionate towards one another. 

This affectionate behavior may be pure and innocent, but when grungols are in the mood, they become quite the sexy love beasts. 

~

Grungol genitailia : When not sexually aroused, grungol genitals are covered up by long, thick pubic fur that naturally interweaves together into a little dome shape. This acts like a fur shell that keeps their junk protected from dirt and parasites that lurk within the ground, as they burrow to and from the surface every night. To the casual human observer, they would appear to have no penis or vagina. Just a furry mound between their legs. When grungols have to pee, or when they’re full-blown hot and Horney, the fur covering their genitals opens up, kind of like butterfly wings. 

The grungol penis, (pombello), looks like a metallic brown or metallic tan, underdeveloped human penis. The testicles are small, and the tip of the pombello is smooth and pointed with no head or foreskin. 

The grungol vagina, (quombolla), is just a slit with no vulva or clitoris, and it lacks moisture. The ribbing on the inside of the birth canal is stretchable but bone hard for better friction. 

~

How They Do It: Grungol intercourse is dry, which sounds more painful than sexy, but these people don’t experience orgasms through their genitals like we do. 

Both the skin of the pombello and the ribbed interior of the quombolla are covered in a thin layer of nerve netting. As the two nerve nettings rub together during the rough, dry friction of intercourse, it creates an electrical charge through the grungols’ bodies which stimulates pleasure sensitive nerves within their skin and hair follicles. 

While making love, grungols often make the bristly fur on the palms of their hands vibrate as they touch all over their partner’s body. This vibrating sends a mild electrical current through their partner’s fur, which brings on an erotic warm and tingly sensation in their skin. Licking all over their partner’s fur while pleasuring them with vibrating caresses causes the electrical current to spark, giving their partner teasing little bursts of orgasmic chills through their body.  

          It takes quite a bit longer for grungols to climax than humans or vervetts. Maybe an average of about fifteen to twenty Earth minutes of licking, rough banging, and vibration pleasuring. But a slower build up leads to a longer and much more intense full-body orgasm which they experience through their skin and fur. 

Even though their genitals are numbed to the orgasm experience, the pombello still ejaculates, and the opening of the quombolla expands the same way human or vervett genitals do when reaching a climax. 

virgin Grungol Cherry Popping: By the time a grungol girl loses her virginity, her cherry has already been popped—And by her own body too. Female grungols don’t menstruate. Instead, about one to three times per Velva Leenan year, the whole uterus detaches and the body deposits it, kind of like laying an egg. Then the body regenerates a fresh new uterus, ready for pregnancy. This disposing of uteruses stops, of course, once the female gets pregnant. When she deposits her very first uterus during puberty, the expanding of the birth canal for the first time, and the painful first-time process of pushing the detached uterus through her dry quombolla breaks a vaginal inner membrane that’s sort of like a Hyman. 

masturbation: Because they don’t experience sexual pleasure through their genitals, grungols don’t masturbate. Nope, a grungol needs another grungol partner in order to experience full sexual pleasure. 

*** 

VERVETT OR GUARDIAN SEX 

Alien Description (vervetts): body types are very similar to human, with two arms and two legs, five human-like fingers on each hand and five human-like toes on each foot. Facial features and skin colors are human two. Non-human-like traits are, having no hair on their bodies, except for their eyelashes, eye brows, and the hair atop their heads. Their hair colors and eye colors are limitless. Eyes, lips, teeth, and finger and toe nails have a pearly sheen. Some have an iridescent sheen instead, but that genetic trait is rare. All have a silver or gold turtle-like half shell over their backs, which spans wider than their shoulders, and with a length reaching from about half-way up the backs of their necks to just above their human-like behinds. Colorful mineral deposits form on their shells, that look very much like gems. 

Alien description (Guardians): Guardians are the hierarchy race of vervetts, but after thousands of generations of hierarchy vervetts being forbidden to breed with villager vervetts, the Guardians evolved into looking almost like a separate species of people. They have all the same physical characteristics as vervetts, but larger versions. They’re much taller with limbs and torsos that are a lot longer, and many have an oblong head shape. 

To avoid making this next part of the article sound annoying, I’m just going to refer to both races as vervetts. 

~

The Stink Of Sex: Unlike grungols and Earthlings, vervetts’ skin releases strong smelling pheramones when both partners feel equally ready to make love. Their pheromones continue to release during sex, especially when the sex gets intense enough to make the lovers perspire. The pheromone smell is offensive to other vervetts who may be nearby, but to the horny couple in love, their partner’s pheromone scent is sexually spellbinding. 

Sometimes the opposite could happen. When a vervett couple is about to make love for the first time, one or both might find their partner’s love scent repulsive, which is a cause for much embarrassment and a potential break-up soon afterward. Or a vervett could get turned on by a couple’s love scent. However, these situations are few and far between. 

To us, the scent of a horny vervett would be the weirdest alien funk our noses would have a close encounter with. Vervetts already have a natural funk as it is. Kind of like a mixture of sugar, freshly cut grass, and aluminum foil. When they want to get it on, this smell gets layered with the smells of salt, minerals, and an assertive sweet smell that’s kind of like overripe fruit on the verge of rotting. Peewsh! No wonder other vervetts would find that offensive. Earthling men would get a de-rection and earthling women’s nipples would turn soft if they caught a whiff of that. 

~

Vervett Gennitailia: Vervetts make love in similar ways as humans, but like their sexual stankiness, their genitals are pretty alien too. And yes, having no body hair means that they’re as bald as babies down there. 

The vervett’s penis, (pavilla), enlarges and points upward when erect, just like a human or grungol penis. However, instead of going from a limp and dangling appendage to a stiffening and rising one when sexually aroused, the pavilla springs outward from the inside of the vervett’s pelvic cavity, like a periscope. After ejaculation, the pavilla shrinks away and recedes back into the body. 

Only the head of the pavilla remains protruding from the lower abdomen. To the casual human observer who catches sight of naked vervetts, the males would appear to have no dicks or balls, but two belly buttons. A normal looking belly button, and a really weird belly button a little ways below it that would look like an enlarged outie with a pinkish ring around it. The unerected pavilla stays safely and conveniently compacted within the body at all times until the male’s significant other and himself are in the mood. Yes, this means that the male vervetts squat over the toilet bucket to pee the same way as the females. Well, male grungols don’t do the aim, wizz, and jiggle thing either, but nobody on that world had ever invented  the silly gender differentiating rule that says boys can’t pee the same way as girls. 

Getting off subject here. Anyway, back to talking about space giblets. 

Vervetts do have nuts, but like the unerect pavilla, their testacles are inside the pelvic cavity. This is an advantage over Earthling nuts. If a male vervett gets kicked in the crotch, it doesn’t put him in temporarily disabling agony. It’s no more painful than if he were kicked in the hip. 

The pinkish ring around the head of the pavilla is a ring of pleasure sensitive nerves called the lote. The lote is like a clitoris. In fact, the whole head of the pavilla is like one enlarged clitoris, allowing the vervett to experience orgasms when not erect. These orgasms are shorter and less intense than those brought on by cumming during sexual intercourse, but he could keep on getting off again and again and again. Erectile disfunction does exist among males over the age of 90, but thanks to Jumellica’s creation of the unstoppable male vervett clit machine, they could still experience full sexual fulfillment. This is another advantage their naughty bits have over that of male humans. 

The vervett vagina, (luvella), has the human-like labia majora, but no labia minora. It has a lote too, but the lote  rings around the entrance to the birth canal. This is an advantage over the Earthling vagina. While most human women either don’t experience an orgasm through intercourse, or they take longer and have a more difficult time getting off than the man, having a clitoris-like ring around the birth canal allows EVERY female vervett to orgasm during intercourse as easily as every male, and then some. 

~

How They Do It: Like with vaginas, the luvella Secretes moisture when the vervett is sexually aroused. Her vulva also rapidly twitches back and forth. It’s common for females to reach orgasm before sex, if her twitching vulva rubs against the sides of her moistened lote. 

Both male and female lotes swell up during intercourse. 

The male’s pleasure increases at all angles as the head of his pavilla hits against the female’s cervix, while his engorged lote rubs against her inner walls and hits against the inner side of her engorged lote. Females often have several orgasms in a row during intercourse before their male partner cums. When this happens, her throbbing, engorged lote acts similar to firm lips sucking his thrusting pavilla. 

The Female’s pleasure increases at all angles too. Not only does her lote get sexually stimulated when the pavilla thrusts through its center, the male’s body hits against the front of it as he thrusts inward, and his engorged lote hits against the back of it as he thrusts outward. 

~

Choecha Mah Junga: This translates to “dry love making”, in the Velva Leenan language. This way of love making isn’t literally dry. It’s just referred to as dry, because it’s when the male isn’t erect and doesn’t ejaculate. The female and the unerect male get into a position where she could bump and grind her lote against his clit machine until they reach orgasm. Couples, especially young newlyweds, often do the choecha mah junga after regular sex to extend their sexy time. In fact, this alternative form of sex gives vervetts the ability to be marathon love makers, unlike grungols and humans who need to take a breather after one or both partners cums. Vervetts can carry on with the choecha mah junga between the increments of when the male’s pavilla is erect and ready for regular sex again. 

Virgin Vervett Cherry Popping: When vervett girls lose their virginity, the male pops the cherry just like with Earthlings, except it’s barely half as painful to the vervett. Some don’t even feel it. This is most likely because they get distracted by the wild party going on in their virgin luvella. 

During childhood, neither male nor female vervett genitals could sexually function and aren’t receptive to sexual stimulation until the vervetts undergo the hormone changes of puberty. 

After puberty, the lote of the young virgin female’s new and improved, mature luvella seems sensitive enough to sexual stimulation. But then when she makes love for the first time, the girth and length of the male’s pavilla stretches and awakens even more pleasure sensitive nerves in her lote. Opposite of how it is for most human girls, for vervett girls, losing their virginity is the most intensely orgasmic sexual experience in their lives. 

Masturbation: Yes, like humans, vervetts do masturbate. However, their state of mind is different when they do it. They don’t masturbate as a way of relieving sexual urges, or out of being in superficial carnal lust with someone. For example, a female vervett villager wouldn’t be stroking herself to X-rated fantasies about her Guardian crush abusing his Authority to sneak her into the High Tower and make her his sex slave. And a male Guardian wouldn’t be jerking off to the memory of the time when he went to a Leeandro Paul concert at his villagers’ Music Club, and the room got so hot and crowded that all the vervett and Guardian women on the dance floors took off all their clothes. 

Vervett masturbation is more for emotional reasons. For example, they’ll do it when their significant other is away for a long time, and they long to be with them but could only be with them in their fantasies. Or they’ll masturbate while fantasizing about a crush they have a strong, romantic interest in, and are pining for that person to feel the same way about them someday. 

*** 

I didn’t include the mention of masturbation in my book, since the HECCTROSSIPY series is meant to be appropriate for a 14-and-older audience, but yeah, Artheena and Mell May sometimes stroked their little pink happy doughnuts while thinking about Leeandro Paul. Some sex does happen in the up-coming book 2, but those scenes don’t include any of the hot and juicy, luvella twitching, pavilla periscoping, pink doughnut glazing graphic details I’ve shared with you tonight. I hope that doesn’t disappoint you, if you were interested in reading the book when it comes out. 

That’s all for this beautifully informative Velva-pedia post. I hope your Valentine’s Day was awesome, and have a sweet and sultry Valentine’s night. 

Love you all! Post you soon!            

Come write with me in the Writers Mastermind!

🏨Hotels Never Existed/ Velva-pedia #1

Hello beautiful, amazing, fantastic, best-people-in-the-galexy, readers of this blog. 

This is the very first Velva-pedia post. I mentioned some blog posts ago that I decided to no longer include appendices in my novels, after having such a hell of a time finishing what was going to be book 2’s appendix. So from now on, facts and bonus stories about the faraway, pre-industrial planet, Velva Leena will be a blog series. 

For centuries, and in many countries all around the world, hotels have been providing travelers with a comfortable place to sleep, eat, and get rejuvenated before its time to head off to their next destination. Us Earthlings could take such facilities for granted. If we traveled to Velva Leena and went looking around a village for a hotel to stay at for a few nights, we would be in for an oh-shit shock. Hotels don’t exist anywhere on that planet, and they never have. They have shops, restaurants, arcades, parks, you name it. They even have tourist attractions—But no hotels. No hotels? What the…?! You won’t find any motels, lodges, Innes, B&Bs, or hostels either. Here is their reason why. 

*** 

Like us, many vervetts and grungols have jobs that involve constant traveling, and many travel at leisure too. However, nobody ever thought to come up with a place to stay in over night—or over day for traveling grungols—where a room could be rented that includes the comforts of a home. Instead, traveling Velva Leenans set up camp when they need to stop and rest between flying from one destination to the next. 

Their tents are made of two layers of animal skin with a collapsable framework made of a rubbery type of metal in between. The framework allows the tent to spring up on its own, which makes it a quick and convenient source of temporary shelter. The animal skin is treated with a formula of plant resins to make it sturdy and durable against inhospitable weather and intrusive creatures. So to them, sleeping in these tents feels just as safe and comfortable as sleeping indoors. Sleeping bags haven’t been invented here either. Travelers sleep on makeshift beds they make out of the same sheets, blankets, and pillows as they use at home. When it’s time to wash up before bed, they have travelers’ hygiene products that work just as well as what they would use at home. Then when it’s time to pack up and move on, the tent can fold up and become a sturdy, stretchable tote for all their things. 

Like how Earth’s travelers go from city to city, most Velva Leenan travelers set up camp for the night in a village on the surface. Or they camp for the day in an under-village deep underground. However, their campsites aren’t like the kind of camping we’re used to, with a surrounding woods and a place to make a camp fire and stuff like that. They simply set up their tents on the streets or in public yards, and even on the front or back porches of buildings.  The Guardians—the hierarchy race on Velva Leena—make it mandatory for travelers to set up camp on public grounds of a village or under-village—the East and West Sections—and not in the residential areas—the North and South Sections. This is out of respect for the residents’ privacy and personal space. This is also better for the travelers’ convenience. 

If someone arrives at their destination when the rest of the village or under-village is asleep, There are usually always some restaurants in an East Section and stores that sell groceries and other necessities in a West Section that stay open later than the rest. And all water stores are open non stop. If all places in a village to eat or buy certain necessities are closed for the night, a vervett can hitch a ride on a grungol’s back and have them take them down to the under-village where they could get whatever they need. The same goes for grungols who set up camp later in the day. They could simply burrow up to the village above where everything is open at that time. Another food option is the public yards. Travelers are welcome to help themselves to fruits and vegetables, and anything else edible that grows around East and West Section buildings. The Velva Leenan mentality is, if it’s on public grounds, it belongs to the public. 

If bad weather strikes a village during the night, that is too dangerous for the sturdy tents to be of any protection, grungols take the vervetts down to the safety of the under-village. Those camping beneath the ground at night get taken to a secluded area in a public yard that’s far enough away from the noise and bustling of the nocturnal under-village. 

Because of these comforts and worry-free conveniences while traveling, nobody ever found it necessary to think of a better way. Although, I could picture the invention of the more cozy and luxurious hotel being an innovative way of traveling, and a world-wide success. However, I don’t think Velva Leenans would call them hotels. They would probably call them something that would translate to English as travelers’ houses. Especially the hotels that have a huge public pool and a restaurant. 

*** 

Want to get to know this bazaar and beautiful, but unfortunately catastrophic planet a little better? Come to Continent 15 and hang out with Artheena, Mell May, Audry, and the rest of the cast in HECCTROSSIPY book 1  The Legend of the Land, available on Amazon UK, Amazon US, and Amazon CA. HECCTROSSIPy  book 2  The Will of the Dark Creator is now ready for beta reading. 

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