The Princess and the Monster

“Please, I’m so hungry. I promise I won’t try to leave again,” she pleaded with her silent capture.
The manacle on her leg clanked loudly as she fell to her knees. She looked up at her capture, her eyes swimming with tears, desperate for any kind of food. She winced as a bowl was dropped in front of her, splashing the tasteless oatmeal all over her and the floor.
Her capture looked at her with glee as she ate the disgusting food by the fistful. She would learn or she would starve.

Princess Elania shoved the painful memories of the tower and her life there aside. She was never going back. She vowed to never touch oatmeal again.
The Princess’s heart soared as her hair whipped in the wind. She had been trapped in that tower for as long as she could remember. She had spent every second of everyday in constant fear and dread. From all that she could gather, her parent’s had sent her there when she was very young.
Princess Elania could not even remember what her parent’s looked like anymore. Everytime she tried to ask why she was trapped in this tower, her capture answered with stony glares and silence.
Her capture was a monster. The longer she stayed trapped the more she became aware of that fact. The only times she ever stepped outside, the monster hovered close by to keep her in check.
“This is amazing,” Elania laughed as her prison faded into the distance.
Her face ached from smiling so big. She honestly could not believe that someone had finally come to her rescue. She had started to believe that she was going to die in that tower, never knowing why she had been abandoned there. Her smile faded as she tried to remember her parent’s face’s.
“Please, can’t I just see them? I don’t understand!” Elania screamed at her capture’s back as he walked away.
He turned and his face split into an evil toothy grin. He seemed amused by the tears streaming down her face. A low rumble echoed around the room.
“Are you laughing,” she sobbed, realizing she was never going to leave her prison.

Her heart had broken that day. She knew no one was coming for her and no one ever would. It was just going to be her and the monster forever. That was the day she learned that she had to look after herself.
“Where are you taking me,” she called after her rescuer.
Her rescuer looked back at her with kind eyes and a soft face, but he did not answer. She didn’t really care what the answer was, as long as she was free. She tried to soak everything in, the green plants and the beautiful rolling hills. She had never seen anything but stone walls before.
When the tower was far behind them, her rescuer folded his giant wing’s and landed softly on the springy grass. Smoke curled up from his nostrils as she climbed off of his scaly back. The dragon looked back at her, before opening his wings and with one gigantic thrust, shot into the sky. She watched him circle gracefully, before flying off into the sunset.
Elania did not know why that dragon had saved her from the tower, she just knew she would be forever greatful to be away from her supposed Prince.

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My Favorite Character

When I started writing Tony and the Tamers, I was the typical nerdy teen. I wanted all of my characters to be relatable and in doing that, they all turned out the same. I worked on my book all through High school and stopped during college.
When I started working in it again, I realized I needed to do some serious rewriting to fix the characters. The four main characters are Tony, Patrick, Jared, and Matt. They all had family issues and were angry with the way their lives had turned out.
Instead of furthering the story, I immediately began to fix each character’s origin and attitude. I had a notebook where I wrote everything I could think of, down to hair color and height. I like to call this process brain dumping. While brain dumping, I grew to love Patrick. Other then his traumatic upbringing, I feel the most kinship to him.
Since he is my favorite, I decided I wanted to give him his time in the spot light and tell everyone about little bit about him!
Patrick Nero is a fifteen year old prince, who tries to live up to his father’s impossible standards. He has spent his life constantly training to be the perfect soldier and always falling short. He grew up alongside Tony, who seemed to excell at everything.
One of the things that I relate to most, is his constant second guessing. Growing up with his pushy father, he realized from a very young age that he was never going to be smart enough or strong enough. I think not being enough is a fear that everyone has deep down.
Patrick struggles to accept his role on the mission, even after he learns some of what he is capable of.
Every time he starts to get confidence, something happens (either real or in his head), that shakes it. I love watching him progress from a sad prince to a serious contender.
I love all of my characters, but Patrick has a special place in my heart. I love writing from his point of view and watching him grow into a man.
Jessica

My first short story

I wrote a short story with the theme being ‘Burnout’. It’s about a single mom and her daily struggles. It’s easy to get lost in being a good homemaker, mom, and wife. I think everyone struggles with finding the balance. Hope you like my story!
The alarm clock jars her awake and she immediately feels the pull. She closes her eyes against the harsh light, trying to mentally prepare herself for the pull. She tries to prioritize what needs to be done today. A small sigh escapes as noise floats in to the room. The pull grows stronger as the noise gets louder. When it finally peaks, she drags herself out of bed.
The kids are fighting at the table as she hunches over the stove. Her hair sticks out crazily as breakfast splatters on her pajamas. She feels another pull as her phone starts to ring. Her heart sinks as she sees the caller ID. She puts on a smile and answers anyways. The activity leader says he cannot be there tonight. She says it is okay and that she will handle the cub scouts, but the pull grows.
She starts ushering the kids out of the door to the car, running a comb through her hair and hurriedly throwing on clothes. As she races through the messy house, another pull starts. She tries to ignore it, but she knows it is impossible. The pull grows as she passes the sink overflowing with dishes and the full trash can.
The kids jump out of the car to go to school. She signs the last minute forms and is informed of a book report that is due tomorrow. She promises to swing by the library and gets the book as she feels yet another pull. She eats her breakfast as she drives to the library. After she gets the book, the pull of groceries and errands call to her. She pays bills on the phone as she walks through the store, picking up the stuff she needs for dinner, all the while feeling pulled to do more.
On the way home, the dirty house keeps creeping up in her mind. She tries to make a mental checklist of which chores are the most important and need to get done. As soon as she steps foot in the house, the list disappears and everything pulls her. She starts laundry and dishes, sweeps and folds, gathers trash and takes it out. The dogs are whining for food and the cats are scratching at the doors. No matter how much she does, the chores never end, the pulling never lessens.
Before she realizes it, it is time to get the kids from school. She grabs a meager lunch and runs out the door. The car rider line is long enough for her to take a few minutes to herself. She relaxes and tries to shove the constant pulling aside. A knock on her window pulls her back to reality. A teacher is looking for volunteers for field trips, clubs, and parent teacher conference dates. She quickly checks her calendar and sets a date for the conferences. The pulling intensifies as she tries and fails to get out of volunteering. The teacher eventually leaves and she forces a smile as her kids get in the car.
The kids ramble on telling her everything that they learned and what they did. They shove quizzes and art projects in to her lap, waiting expectantly for her praise. She takes a second to look at every piece before handing out snacks and driving away from the school. They stop by the house long enough to gather up their equipment for their various clubs and sports. She drops each kid off, promising to stay and watch them when it it their turn, the pulling coming from every direction now. She sits in the bleachers, sorting through emails and cheering for the team.
After practice, they pick up the rest of the kids and then head to scouts. She teaches her thrown together lesson to the rowdy boys, all the while wishing the activity leader had been able to do it. The other moms look on sympathetically. She feels like she is being pulled apart.
On the drive home, the kids are tired and cranky. A full day of activities has taken it’s toll on all of them. They get to the house and eat a quick dinner before she starts making them cycle through baths and get ready for bed. She reads to them and kisses them good night. After the nightly battles, they are all asleep. She sits on the couch and looks around at her destroyed living room. Mitts, cleats, and clothes litter the floor. The kitchen sink is once again full of the days dishes.
She feels empty inside, the pull is gone. She does not want to dance on strings like a marionette doll anymore. She wants to say no, no more sports, no more chores, no more scouts. She wants to walk away from it all. The constant pulling throughout the day is too much. She feels burnt out on life’s responsibilities. She feels like she is no longer her own person, but a hybrid built to serve others. She longs for time where she can do what she wants not what she needs to do.
She reluctantly gathers backpacks and pulls out permission forms and agendas that need to be signed. A paper falls on to the floor. It is a drawing of her. In the picture she is balancing clothes, a ball, and holding hands with the kids. At the bottom of the picture in crude little kid handwriting, it says “I love my Mom because she can do everything”. Tears well up in her eyes as the pulls vanish. The appreciation and love in that simple drawing spread through her. The burnt out feeling is replaced by that of gratitude. She knows she can make a difference and she knows she is doing the best she can.
She makes her way to bed, knowing the pull will be back tomorrow, but determined to make the best of it.
By: Jessica Wing
(Comment and tell me what you think 😄)

It’s the Wars man!

Our potty training adventure continues. Our monster is a year and seven months and doing amazing! Since I’m packing less in the diaper bag, I wanted a smaller bag. I decided to sew her a backpack big enough for her stuff that she can carry herself.
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Through my own purchases and friends, I ended up with quite a bit of Star Wars fabric. I debated on what to use it for, but my mind was finally made up when she started bringing me the fabric and singing the Star Wars theme song. She is crazy about all things Star Wars!

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I could not find a pattern for a kid sized backpack that I loved, so I decided to wing it. I started by just cutting out the basic shape and size I wanted the backpack.
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The strap was a little bit tricky. I didn’t want it to be too flimsy and I wanted it to grow with her. I ended up using fabric folded over some paracord.
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I sewed a pocket on the inside for crayons or cars, depending on what she packs. I will also be adding an elastic pocket on the outside for a sippy cup.
It definitely is a work in progress and has it’s mistakes, but for my first attempt I’m pretty thrilled with the way it is coming together! I can not wait to share the end product!

Jessica