Interlude 1 John Smith. For a year or more, I had written indirectly about Millicent’s competitor. Millicent would describe things that he would do that would make him evil (well at least not good). While it was interesting and fun in an L.E Modesitt Jr. sort of way, I realized I was probably asking a bit more of my readers than was reasonable. Plus I probably needed to write as the villain if I was going to understand this person. About three months ago, I wrote this chapter to look at his process versus Millicent’s. In his dialog with Millicent, the Dean was uncomfortable with John Smith. Why? I tried to hint at that a bit. I also decided that Smith needed to know that he was “violating the rules” but wasn’t really worried. I have been told that being uncomfortable is a sign that one’s boundaries are being stretched. My boundaries are being pulled severely. Villainy, dastardliness, malfeasance, and general unpleasantness are not my comfort zones. I’ve analyzed his motives for his actions and it almost all about business with a touch of imperialistic superiority. That doesn’t sound all that bad, but wars have been fought for less. Perhaps that will change. But as I require him to act in crueler and crueler fashions am I finding it uncomfortable to write. Maybe there is too much really bad things in the world for me to like writing such things. Fortunately, I have a decent set of hero’s to revive me.
My long suffering editor wondered where this chapter fit. I put it after chapter 1 although that is out of time sequence. Later interludes will probably be in sequence. My long suffering editor then wondered why it wasn’t a chapter in its own right. That is a really good question. (Back in the day when I taught a class or currently in my consulting world – that is code for “I don’t know”). My primary reason had something to do with wanting the first chapter to be about Millicent. Perhaps that isn’t enough.
As for future chapters – I am currently typing a chapter in which Jason and Millicent are interacting quite a bit. Writing wise, I have started “Interlude 3” in which John Smith reacts to interference from Millicent. Hint: Millicent isn’t hurt directly and humans get the shaft and my boundaries are shifted more.
I should probably contact someone about some art work for my stories. I like my butterfly, but it is hardly clockwork and my stick figures would only create unintended comedy.