BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 40 – Hello, Thirteen

Week 40 – Hello, Thirteen
Happy October, everyone. I never really do all that much for Halloween, but I love this time of year anyway. This year in particular, there’s some big events coming, foremost of which is Doctor Who’s return on Sunday, with Jodie Whittaker’s first full episode as the Thirteenth Doctor. As you might remember, last year I spent around four months catching up with six years of the show so that I could watch the Christmas special featuring Twelve’s departure and Thirteen’s first appearance as it aired. That episode ended up being one of my all-time favorites, and Thirteen made a hell of a good first impression in just her first minute-plus of screentime. I’ve been looking forward to the start of her tenure for months now, and I know she’s going to be spectacular… or rather, brilliant. :D
Sunday is also the premiere of Jojo’s Bizarre Adventure Part 5: Golden Wind, which… well, Part 5 is pretty much the only portion of JJBA that I haven’t been spoiled on, so I’m looking forward to going in with a blank slate. About all I know is that this part’s Jojo is both Dio’s son and a Joestar, it takes place entirely in Italy and deals heavily with the local Mafia, and the main villain’s Stand has powers that damn near nobody can explain, to the point that “But what does *SPOILER STAND NAME* do?!” is a meme in the fandom.
As far as my projects go… I’m trying to get the next chapter of Shattered Skies up as soon as possible. I had planned on having another Non-Canonical Lunatic Crack Chapter up for the fic’s fourth(!!!) anniversary on the 14th, but barring a big flash of inspiration, I’m not sure that’s going to happen. I don’t want to do the same thing I did last year, and I’m not sure I have enough funny material to devote to the idea I have knocking around. I may have to shelve the NCLCC concept until next year, but I’ll come up with something to mark the occasion, new chapter or not.
– BHS

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 39 – Make My Story

Week 39 – Make My Story
The first chapter of Uravity Falls, the cute, fluffy little story I wrote mostly for fun, got a tremendous response when I posted it last week. I woke up the next morning to forty messages in my inbox, all of them notifications from the various hosting sites regarding the story. To be honest, that’s the kind of response I wish I could get more often, but hey, I’ll enjoy it when I can get it. Completing the first chapter of UF officially snapped me out of my slump, as I was able to get out Chapter 4 of Twilight’s Dreaming only a few days later. I still plan on at least trying to publish Chapter 5 by the end of the month, to make up for missing August.
Back to UF for a moment: this story and the BNHA video game releasing at the end of next month are going to be my way of getting my fix for the series after the season finale next week. This season has officially cemented BNHA as one of my favorite series ever; I’ll be sad to see it end for now, but Season 4 being a virtual guarantee for next spring takes the sting out of it a bit. And of course, next season features JOJO PART 5, so it’s not like I’ll be lacking insanely awesome action shows to watch.
Planet With also ended this week, and oh my god what a trip it was. Rather than attempt to explain the show’s insane charms again, I’d like to direct all my readers to this Mother’s Basement video from a couple weeks ago. Geoff summed it up quite nicely as “Gurren Lagann meets Earthbound” in the title, but he also gave the series a thorough analysis that contributed greatly to my enjoyment of the show. The man knows his stuff. Here’s the link: [link]
That’s all from me for this week, keep reading for more stuff.
– BHS

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TWILIGHT’S DREAMING, CHAPTER 4

Chapter 4

Bonding among friends

Sweet and sour umeshu

As a parting gift

 

“There before him stood a vision from a dream, rising bare from the waters of the moonlit lake, her hair silver as the stars, her eyes dark as ink but warm as sunlight, a doe of such extraordinary beauty that Hayaoh feared his heart might stop at the sight of her. Around them, the forest grew quiet and still.

“Hayaoh could scarcely think. Some part of him knew that he must have interrupted the lady as she bathed. It was only polite to avert his gaze, apologize to her, and be on his way. And yet… try as he might, the words would not come. The mighty samurai who had shown no fear in battle after battle, war after war, was struck dumb by the thought that at any moment, she might flee and he would never see her again. Surely that would be a fate crueler than any death…”

[Excerpt from The Legend of Hayaoh, a collection of squirrel folklore, circa Year 500]

 

Slowly, slowly. Faun fought to keep her breathing even as she positioned two chipped vials over a dented tin funnel, the narrow end poised over two empty halves of a bombshell, resting on a workbench hewn from an oak stump. An embroidered handkerchief, pickpocketed from a raccoon noble years before, was tied securely over her muzzle and snout. Faun didn’t often exercise caution like this when it came to making her bombs; she was no bookhead like Rowan, but generally she knew how various substances reacted to combinations of flint, gunpowder, and spellstones. When she didn’t know how they would react… well, half the fun was in experimenting. The risk made the end result worthwhile.

This mixture, however, was a bold new frontier in the development of her signature weapons. Bold and potentially painful, if she misjudged the balance of the ingredients. Get this wrong, and it would likely mean imposing on Hanami for a week or two while her own home aired out. If at all possible, that was to be avoided. The poor girl had enough to worry about, especially in the last few weeks. She couldn’t—

Faun scowled to herself and bit her tongue. No distractions. This mixture had to be perfect. Little by little, she tipped the two vials over. No distractions. No distractions…

Tap, tap, tap.

“Oh, pinch me!” Her ears flattened. Of course. Of course. She corked both vials and laid them down—carefully—beside the funnel, ripped off the handkerchief, and stormed to her front door. Whoever it was had best thank their lucky Godsdamned stars that she wasn’t currently looking for test subjects for the new bombs, she thought. Throwing the door open, she prepared to give the visitor a piece of her mind.

“S-sorry, is this a bad time? I’m sorry…” said Hanami, shrinking back from her friend’s fearsome expression.

Faun’s mood shifted like someone had flipped a switch. “Flowers, what a surprise! No, it’s not a bad time at all!” she said, beaming from ear to pointed ear. She visited Hanami far more often than Hanami visited her, so this was a rare pleasure indeed. “Come in, come in! Sorry about the mess.”

“A-are you sure I’m not intruding? I could come back later—”

“Pffft, don’t be stupid,” said Faun, putting an arm around her and pulling her through the threshold. “I wasn’t doing anything, just mixing stuff for a new bomb. Watch your step.”

It was sound advice. Somehow, impossibly, the vixen’s den seemed even more disorganized than the last time Hanami had seen it. The empty bottles littering the floor appeared to be multiplying at an exponential rate. Crumpled papers and various wrappings crinkled underfoot as Faun swatted portions of the morass aside to clear a space for her friend to sit. The pumice boulder was still there, but Faun now had it mounted to a display pedestal for Gods only knew what reason. A few of the ceiling-mounted nets holding stashes of her hoard looked ready to collapse from the weight of the mingled treasures and trash that Faun stuffed into them.

Hanami’s mouth fell open as she caught sight of a familiar watercolor painting emblazoned on a canvas scroll, stretched out between a meter-tall mound of dull, ordinary pebbles and what appeared to be part of an iron sewer grating. “F… Faun, is that Lord Aspen’s Night Elegy?! How—”

“What, that thing?” She barely gave it a second glance. “I guess so. I snagged it from a fence, this raccoon lady out in the far east shore. I know, it clashes with the rest, doesn’t it. Sit down, sit down!” From somewhere in the hoard she produced a battered straw mat and spread it out over the largest patch of clear floor she could find. “There you go! So,” she said, sinking to eye level, “what’s the occasion? Are you—”

Faun stopped as she took a closer look. Hanami had made an impressive attempt to hide it, but her cheek fur was still damp from a recent washing. Most folk would not give her appearance a second thought. Faun was not most folk… she noticed the swelling and lingering redness of her friend’s eyes, the fine creases gathering beneath her eyelids. “Flowers?” she said, her voice low. “What’s wrong?”

“N-nothing!” Hanami waved with one hand and scrubbed at her face again with the other. “The u-usual trouble sleeping…”

“Hanami,” she said, wrinkling her snout. Insomnia she expected, especially after the ordeal with the Soulsnatcher, but this smacked of a deeper problem. “If there’s anything you need to talk about, you know you can open up, right? I’ll listen, I swear.”

“I know. Th-that’s why I… I actually wondered i-if you’d like to drink together.”

Whatever Faun was expecting, that was not it. She goggled, wondering if she was hearing correctly. “Beg pardon?”

“Would you like to drink together?” said Hanami with a bashful smile. “With me? I… I can’t have anything really strong, but—” Squeak. The rest of her sentence was cut off as Faun threw her arms around her, drawing her in close and hugging her tight.

“Flowers,” said Faun, radiantly happy, her concern melted away by joy. “I honestly thought you’d never ask.” Her tail swished back and forth like a high-speed metronome. “Of course, of course I’ll drink with you! Anytime, anywhere! Gods, Flowers, but let me know sooner, I gotta get ready! I think I have at least one unopened bottle of umeshu around here…”

 


 

“— and that’s why foxes never core the pumpkin. Get what I’m saying?”

“Mmm-hmm,” said Hanami, taking another ginger sip from her cup of umeshu, the bottle still two-thirds full. The plum wine’s taste was a pleasant, citrusy mix of sweet and sour, cold on her tongue but warm in her belly, and it tasted nothing like the few drinks she had indulged herself in before. Its effects were soothing, a calm, balmy haze settling over her brain and making the world seem softer, less urgent. Something like this could change her mind about drinking… she only regretted not trying it sooner.

By contrast Faun was a professional. Already on her fourth Dead God Firewater and pulling it straight from the bottle, she waved the stuff at Hanami, sloshing a bit of fizzing cadmium-red brew over the lip. It dripped between the vixen’s gloved fingers and spilled to the floor, where it ate a few new marks in the soft pine floorboards. “Not because we’re picky. Because we’re smart,” she said, nodding to herself. “It’s just common… common sense.”

Hanami was not sure which confused her more: Faun’s rant, her lack of knowledge of botany, or literally any of the meaning of such a phrase. She was not sure it had meaning… but the company was even more enjoyable than the drink, so she smiled and nodded. Now she knew why Faun was so popular at the Fools Rush. The conversation over past two hours had been illuminating indeed.

“Like,” Faun continued, “if you wanted to core it, Gods know I’d never stop you. Core the shedding hell out of it if you want, go crazy. Foxes, though? We just don’t. Not worth the trouble, or the mess.”

“Mmm-hmm,” said Hanami again. “Pumpkins are tough like that. I don’t grow them often.”

Faun rolled an eye at her, halfway through another long swallow. “No, no, you don’t get it. The pumpkin’s a… whatsitcalled… mange, can’t think of the name. A thing that’s not really another thing, but it’s supposed to be. Stripes would know, damn his useless hide… He’s the best, a credit to his kind.”

“You mean…” Hanami scrunched up her features, trying to penetrate the haze. “A metaphor?”

“What’s a metaphor?”

She could no more help herself than stop the tide. A giggle slipped from her mouth before she could articulate the answer. “I-it’s for sheep and goats to graze in.”

Silence. Faun stared, the bottle paused halfway to her lips.

“Meadow… for?” said Hanami, trying again.

The vixen howled with laughter, spilling more of her drink. “Hot damn, she tells jokes! No wonder I love you!”

Now it was safe to laugh along with her. “I love you too, Faun. You’re my best friend.”

Faun groped for her shoulder with her free hand, missing by half a meter. “No, Flowers, I mean I love you. I’m nuts about you. Hee, nuts. Because you’re a squirrel.”

“Th-that’s nice of you to say,” said Hanami, her smile faltering a bit. “But I-I don’t really think it’s what you mean.”

“Whaddya mean, what I mean? I always say what I mean, unless I’m lying. It’s one of my good points.”

“I know.” Seeing her trouble, Hanami leaned forward and patted Faun’s shoulder instead. “It’s one of the things I love about you.”

“Aw, mange to that.” A goofy, bittersweet grin spread across her face. “Sh-shouldn’t waste your time on a mess like me, Flowers. We both know who… who your heart’s set on.”

The warmth of the wine spread out from her belly, filling her being. “He’s…” she said, her ears turning back. “He’s better than he thinks he is. Better than I deserve. That’s part of why I’m here… because I need to tell him.”

Faun stared, glassy-eyed. “You’re not serious.”

Hanami’s ears turned back as she turned away from her friend’s gaze.

“Good Gods,” Faun whispered. “You are serious. You’re really gonna—”

“Yes,” said Hanami. “Today. I have to at least try, so he’ll know. Before it’s too late.”

“Pffft!” Faun blew air through her lips. “Listen, Flowers, if some part of him doesn’t already know, he’s denser than lead. Takky’s thick, but he’s not that thick. Still…” A mischievous wink. “Can’t hurt to give him a little push, can it? Can’t hurt.”

“You’re right.” Her hands dithered in her lap. “I think it would be… nice.”

“More than ‘nice,’ kitto. You’re both adorable, you deserve each other.”

“I don’t—” Hanami stopped as a thought meandered through the haze of the wine. Perhaps it would be wiser not to trouble Faun with the rest of that sentence. Let her be happy, drunk and unburdened by any problems. Yes, it was better that way. “Never mind,” she said. “Thank you, Faun. For the drinks, and for the talk.”

Firewater sloshed from the bottle’s lip as Faun raised it in a cheerful, unsteady salute. “Anytime, kitto! Go get ‘im. I’m rooting for you. And be sure to tell me after how it—”

For once, it was Faun who was silenced by unexpected contact as Hanami hugged her tight. After a few seconds of sodden confusion, Faun returned the embrace, her ears swiveling back a few degrees. “Oi,” she said. “What’s all this?”

Hanami’s answer was hushed, barely more than a whisper: “I should not be here.”

It took Faun half a minute to decide what that meant. Extracting herself from the hug, she shoved Hanami toward the door. “Damn straight you shouldn’t! Go to him, kitto! Make your move!”

“I’m going, I’m going!” Hanami broke into another fit of giggles despite herself.

“You know where his house is, right? Little cabin just southeast of Campfire Rock? I’d draw you a map, but… room’s spinning, you know. I’m all turned around. Can’t find my own tail.” To illustrate the point, Faun looked down at herself and turned in a complete, if wobbly circle. “Wait. There it is.”

“Faun…” Concern for her friend briefly overtook Hanami’s thoughts. “Will you be all right? Maybe you should lie down…”

“Dijo, dijo. I’m telling you, this is normal. It’s just starting to kick in. Get out of here, Flowers, I’ll be fine by morning.”

Still Hanami lingered on the doorstep, chewing on her bottom lip. There were still so many things left unsaid, and to leave Faun in this state…

The tiny voice in her mind quieted her doubts. I should not be here. I should go to Zero…

That was that, then. Hanami smiled, bowed, and stepped past the threshold. “Goodbye, Faun. Thank you.”

 


 

Once the door clicked shut, Faun sagged against it, full and warm and satisfied with a job well done. It was unhealthy for people to suppress their feelings for each other like that, she thought. Especially when they were so obviously smitten with each other…

A pang went off in her heart, one she could feel even through the fog of the Firewater coursing through her. It was an odd feeling, a melancholy feeling she could not quite identify. She did not like it, not at all. Better to push it down and forget about it. Fortunately, Firewater was quite handy for forgetting things. Just like that, it was gone.

Sighing, Faun slid down the surface of the door, deliriously happy once more. It was not long before she began to snore.

In her drunken slumber, she failed to hear the repeated chimes from her message scroll half an hour later, which lay open on a battered footstool somewhere in the horde. Magical ink flowed across the scroll’s surface, scrawling the same words over and over:

From Rowan. Urgent. From Rowan. Urgent. From Rowan. Urgent. From Rowan. Urgent.

 

END OF CHAPTER 4

 

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 38 – Wet Dry Spell

Week 38 – Wet Dry Spell
I don’t do well with storms. I was five years old when Hurricane Hugo hit my neighborhood in North Carolina, twelve when Fran put a branch through my parents’ bedroom ceiling, and fifteen when we had to evacuate our house for three days because of Floyd… which was also the same week that I had walking pneumonia with a 112-degree fever. So I think that given my past trauma, I was completely justified in having constant anxiety attacks in the days leading up to Florence. Fortunately, my family and I dodged a bullet… lots of rain, but no damage, and only a tiny leak in the basement. My deepest sympathies go out to those who were less lucky than we are; believe me, I know how much it sucks.
So no, there’s no real progress to report this week, sorry. My recent problems concentrating have been made even worse by my nerves and by my workspace being disrupted for hurricane-proofing. This dry spell sucks just as much for me as it does for you, if not moreso. If it goes on too much longer, I may need to take drastic measures to get myself back on track. Let’s hope it doesn’t come to that.
– BHS
  • Tasakeru  Book IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 4: 1.75 pages done
  • Tasakeru Patreon: 5 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,281 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: The Morning Lights, Chapter 38: 0.75 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • My Hero Academia Uraraka One-Shot: 0.5 pages done
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: COMPLETE!

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 37 – Seven Years of Stars

Week 37 – Seven Years of Stars
It’s hard to believe it’s been seven years today since I posted the first chapter of Stars Above. I was on an overnight petsitting job, borrowing my clients’ laptop to make the final adjustments to what would become a three-year project… I knew I had something with a ton of potential, but at the start I had an attitude of “let’s just post and see what happens”. It wasn’t until several weeks later when the third chapter was underway that my friend and co-author Forzare sent me the email that would change everything, suggesting that since the Madoka Magica anime drew so heavily from the story of Faust, we should base the framework of our story on Dante’s Inferno, with our intelligent Demons representing each of the nine Circles of Hell. That was what truly lit the spark for me and gave me a plan for how things would go… of course, things ended up changing along the way due to a certain shapeshifter completely eclipsing my intended final villain in terms of sheer awfulness, but in the end that change was for the better. Thanks to all of you who stuck with it all the way. I’m still quite proud of my baby, my first serious fanfic.
Speaking of fanfic, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention a Shattered Skies review I found in my inbox this morning, a multi-paragraph monster from someone on FF.net who had never commented on the story before. I bring it up because it’s a perfect example of my favorite kind of review. Not only did they go in-depth (and how!), but they got it. They got exactly what I’ve been going for with this story for nearly four years now. It’s a feeling of superb giddiness when a reader has such a complete understanding of your work’s themes, a kind of pure joy that’s difficult to describe. And even better, they mentioned how they’ve come to love and care for even the characters from series they’re not familiar with… No matter how many times it happens, seeing someone say “I’ve never seen X before, but your story got me watching it!” warms my heart. Thank you, palad1n, for making my week… hell, my month.
 
– BHS
  • TasakeruBook IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 4: 1.75 pages done
  • TasakeruPatreon: 5 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,293 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: The Morning Lights, Chapter 38: 0.25 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • My Hero Academia Uraraka One-Shot: In progress
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: COMPLETE!

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 36 – Record Setting

Week 36 – Record Setting

And here I thought this was going to be a slow news week. News dropped on Saturday that AHHHHH HOLY CRAP NEW MADOKA ANIME GET HYPE GET HYPE GET-
*whack*
Ahem. Beg your pardon. So yes, the Madoka franchise is returning to TV in 2019 with an adaptation of the Magia Record mobile game! Speaking as a huge and unrepentant Madoka dork, hell friggin’ yes. It’s way past time for the series to get another major installment, and if this helps bring PMMM back into the spotlight and get the elusive fourth movie made, I’m 1000% for it. When it comes out, I’ll be doing an in-depth liveblog on my Tumblr, count on it.
I finished Episode 08 of Silent InvenTOYry on time, and had it posted to coincide with the 25th anniversary of the first airing of Power Rangers. Not a bad hustle, if I say so myself. The episode is below… as usual, please watch multiple times and do the like/upvote/comment/subscribe thing… and remember, $2 Patreon pledges will get their names in future episodes. Here’s your embed:
The next episode should be a Semi-Short, which is tentatively slated for sometime in December, with another full episode on track for January.
Sadly, I think the push to get the episode finished and out sort of fried my creative circuits. I’ve been largely unable to focus for the past week. I hated to miss my end-of-the-month Patreon deadline, particularly since my longtime Onions friend evilneko just became my fifth Patron… but it was either miss the deadline or force it and put up something I wasn’t satisfied with, so I chose the former. I’ll do my best to get back on track this week, but burnout can be a tenacious thing.
– BHS
  • Tasakeru  Book IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 4: 0.5 pages done
  • Tasakeru Patreon: 5 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,297 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: The Morning Lights, Chapter 38: In progress
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: COMPLETE!

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 35 – A Ranger at Heart

Week 35 – A Ranger at Heart
Tomorrow’s my birthday. Tomorrow also happens to be the 25th anniversary of the first episode of Mighty Morphin’ Power Rangers, a series that started me on the road to becoming the Japanese culture nut that I am today. The show premiered on my ninth birthday, and I was there watching, utterly enthralled from the first moment I saw the Dinozords combining. I was there watching the night of the prime-time special where they introduced Lord Zedd, the villain that terrified an entire generation of children (before the stupid parents groups forced the writers to make him less scary, that is). I was there when Tommy made his return as the White Ranger. When Jason, Trini, and Zack left, my enthusiasm for the series started to diminish a bit, then it came back when Zeo premiered, went away again for Turbo, and came back for In Space. In the years since, I’ve always been at least semi-aware of what was going on in the franchise, no matter what else I was into at the time, In 2009, as it looked like PR was ending for good, I fell in love with Super Sentai through Samurai Sentai Shinkenger, to a probably unhealthy degree. My interest will come and go, but PR and Sentai are always close to my heart. Part of me is still the little kid watching the robots fight rubber-suited monsters and loving every minute of it… part of me is still the kid who used to fantasize about joining the cast someday and taking command of Titanus, my favorite Zord, as the Grey Ranger. (I still take a weird sort of pride in the fact that for about 20 years, I could claim grey as my Ranger color… When they finally debuted an official Grey Ranger, it was in another dinosaur series, of all things!)
Yes, it was goofy. Yes, the dubbing was horrible, the acting was sub-par, the switch between Japanese and American footage was even noticeable to a nine-year-old, and the whole thing was first and foremost a vehicle to sell toys. Who cares? PR and Sentai were never supposed to be great art, but for me and an entire generation of kids, they were something extraordinary. Hell yes, I would still take a role on the show in a heartbeat if I were able… even if I couldn’t be the Grey Titanus Ranger, I’d still have that little piece of immortality.
So anyway. My new Silent InvenTOYry episode is going up at midnight EST, and it’s a special Power Rangers-themed episode. I put a ton of effort into this one, so I hope you’ll all love it.
The new episode has been my number-one priority for the past week, so everything else is on temporary hold. Things will get back to normal soon.
– BHS
  • Tasakeru  Book IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 4: In progress
  • Tasakeru Patreon: 4 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,310 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: The Morning Lights, Chapter 37: COMPLETE!
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: Going up TONIGHT at 12:00 AM EST

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 34 – “YOU F—ING mONSTER”

Week 35 – “YOU F—ING mONSTER”

The title for this week’s Report is the exact, verbatim reaction VDrake had when I first told him about one of the most devastating plot developments I had in store for Shattered Skies… That was something like two years ago, to give you an idea of exactly how far I plan this stuff in advance.
However, when it came time to actually write said scene, it turned out to be one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. It was far more raw and emotional than I expected, and I had to draw on some of my worst memories for inspiration, which… well. It’s a damned good thing the scene turned out like it did, because it was a legitimate concern of mine that if it came off as a cheap tearjerker or anything less than sincere, if I either overplayed or underplayed that moment, or any of the other raw moments in this chapter for that matter, it could derail my entire story. I was more nervous about posting Chapter 37 than I have been posting anything else in at least a year.
The response was worth it, fortunately. I already told some of you how I changed my mind and decided to end the chapter on an uplift… and now I’m so glad I did. I wasn’t expecting the new ending to get the most response, given everything else that happens… but hey, I’m happy it worked.
I have almost all the footage I need for Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08 shot, except for two scenes that will require some extra preparation and craftwork. My target date for uploading the ep is next Tuesday, so providing my materials get here in the mail within the week, I should be on track.
And after that, plus this month’s Tasakeru chapter… I’m seriously considering doing a one-shot Boku no Hero Academia fic about Uraraka. My precious cinnamon roll needs more love. I’m still trying to make up my mind in terms of plot, but we’ll see.
– BHS
  • Tasakeru  Book IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 4: In progress
  • Tasakeru Patreon: 4 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,310 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: The Morning Lights, Chapter 37: COMPLETE!
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: ~50% complete

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 33 – Mirror Shards

Week 33 – Mirror Shards

First off this week: I’m proud to announce the publication of Mirror Shards, a Shattered Skies recursive fanfiction by friend and frequent commentator/feedback-leaver ArtIdiotGuy222. AIG and I have been collaborating on this thing for several weeks now, trading ideas back and forth to make sure neither of us is stepping on the other’s canon. The story stars Kyoko Kanae, a singularly unique Precure OC who has been part of all of the canon teams, thanks to time shenanigans and multiversal weirdness. Teaming up with the reformed Dark Precure 5 and Bad End Cures, the effects of Dead End’s war on reality strike Kyoko in ways that no one can predict. Needless to say, I’m blown away that someone thinks enough of my work to create their own spin on it, and I’m seriously impressed with the results so far. Please go check it out at the link above, or here on DA.
I had hoped that I would have Chapter 37 of Shattered Skies out tonight, since it’s way overdue, but it looks like it’ll be at least another day before it’s done. There are scenes in this chapter which absolutely must be done proper justice, so the last thing I want to do is rush it out the door. When I do, though… I’m making a change on the meta-level that I think will be for the better. More on that once the chapter goes up.
I also made some major Tasakeru progress on the self-publishing front… I’m happy to announce that Book I is closer than ever to going up on Amazon. There’s still some formatting kinks I need to work out, but the bulk of the work on the manuscript is done at last.
Anime stuff: I don’t think enough of you are watching Planet With. It’s a spectacularly weird sci-fi/mecha show that’s running in the current season, and when I say “spectacularly weird”, I mean that there’s giant perverted cats that swallow people before turning into mechas, alien weapons that attack people with their past traumas, a conspiracy involving warring factions of space-cats versus space-dogs, and Norio freaking Wakamoto as one of the aforementioned space-cats. I find it hilarious that they hired one of the most legendary Japanese voice actors of all time to voice a character that only says “Nya!” in various inflections. I mean, he did voice Chiyo’s Dad in Azumanga Daioh, so he’s got precedent for voicing bizarre cat… things… but still. Chiyo’s Dad could actually talk in that wonderful, distinctive Wakamoto purr. This character, as I said, seems limited exclusively to saying “Nya”… which is thankfully translated by a maid girl who seems to have no other purpose in the show than to stand around turning “Nya” into complete sentences. Oh yeah, there’s also some damned pretty-looking CG fight scenes, even more impressive considering that CG in TV anime usually seems limited to about 6 frames per second, if that. The show is a unique kind of utterly bonkers, and watching it is becoming a highlight of my week.
– BHS
***

A minor greetings from below, Storyteller222 (aka ArtIdiotGuy on deviantART) here. I’m very grateful to have worked with BHS on Mirror Shards with him and to have his approval on it. It’s been a fun ride thus far showing the events of Shattered Skies from an OC’s perspective and the consequences of such ranging from the nature of the OC in question to arriving late to the battle.

What I will say immediately is that Mirror Shards isn’t exactly necessary when reading Shattered Skies. It’s an optional side story, like the relationship between the Star Wars Movies and whatever cartoon they’ve recently made.

Still, I hope you enjoy the fruits of our labors and what we have to show.

For when the Sky Shatters, the Shards of the Mirror will fall and only show the ruin…

Signed, ArtIdiotGuy/Storyteller222

  • Tasakeru  Book IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 4: In progress
  • Tasakeru Patreon: 4 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,317 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies, Chapter 37: 23 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: ~20% complete

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 32 – Pushed Back

Week 32 – Pushed Back
Job’s done, finally. Once I got home on Friday, I was all set to finally start work in earnest on Episode 08 of Silent InvenTOYry… and then, 12 hours later, I threw my back out for the second time in a month. I’m more stiff now than actually in pain, but until I’m at 100% again, I need to avoid bending over, lifting heavy objects, or making sudden movements. That rules out moving my green screen around or doing any stunts for at least a day or two. Sorry, guys.
I can at least work on writing in the meantime, so the next order of business is to get Chapter 37 of Shattered Skies out. There’s some major changes happening both in and out of story in this one, so perhaps it’s for the best that I waited to devote my full attention to it. In fact, I’m still trying to decide whether or not I need to split this one in two, in order to give each scene the “oomph” I think it deserves.
While you wait on me, have some cuteness from one of my clients. Make sure your sound is turned up.

– BHS
  • TasakeruBook IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 3: COMPLETE!
  • TasakeruBook IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 4: In progress
  • TasakeruPatreon: 4 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,329 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies, Chapter 37: 10 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: ~10% complete

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TWILIGHT’S DREAMING, CHAPTER 3

Chapter 3

Tenets and edicts

Worrisome developments

Autumn ponderings

 

“Hayaoh’s wanderings took him to the great forest of demons in the east, where few dared tread. He was not afraid; all the warriors of the mortal world had offered him no challenge, so why should he fear demons?

“By then, his legend had spread even to the land of spirits. Ghost, phantom, specter, and wraith alike fled at the sight of him. The very trees gave way, shuddering as they drew in their roots to form a path for him to walk. Hours passed, and as the day turned swiftly into night, Hayaoh grew weary with thirst. Coming across a mighty river, he followed the river to its source, a placid lake in a basin of granite, encircled by ancient oaks. The great samurai came to a halt and knelt at the water’s edge, removing his helmet to drink…”

[Excerpt from The Legend of Hayaoh, a collection of squirrel folklore, circa Year 500]

 

“I hate this.”

It was a phrase that Sister Camilla Quarta Viviana had already heard many times that day. The jillrabbit sighed as she adjusted the fabric. “I know, Milady. Just a moment, I’m almost finished. If you could raise your arms, please?”

Lady Nadeshiko Argenteus scowled at the arched marble ceiling of her dressing chamber as if daring it to argue. With great reluctance, she did as she was asked, holding her arms out to her sides.

“Thank you,” said Camilla as she fastened each of the straps of Nadeshiko’s ceremonial stola. When finished, she let the pristine white linen drop, and it draped itself around the floris in a pleasing fashion. Pleasing to other people, not to Nadeshiko herself.

“I do not know how my mother tolerates this,” said Nadeshiko, picking at the linen between thumb and forefinger. She ached to be out of the accursed garment as quickly as possible. “For someone of her stature, appearing in public without armor or weapons is horrendously unsafe… any lunatic could attempt to assassinate her.”

“That’s why your knights will be with you, Milady.”

“Fie on my knights.” A less mannered sentient would have spit in disgust for emphasis. “I, at least, do not need protection.”

Camilla bit back a chuckle. “I’m sure you don’t, Milady, but it’s a formality.”

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 31 – Persona-l Matters

Week 31 – Persona-l Matters
One of the benefits of extended house/petsitting jobs, such as the one I am currently on, is that it gives me a chance to catch up on stuff that I’ve been putting off. For example, during my hours between feedings and cleanings last week, I finally got around to finishing Fullmetal Alchemist: Brotherhood, only nine years behind the rest of the world. Likewise, I used part of my profits from this job to buy a copy of Persona 4: The Golden, which is a series that everyone and their mother has been telling me I’d love for… around a decade or so. Well, when they’re right, they’re right… I’m at the beginning of July in the game’s calendar, and I absolutely adore it. I’d write a long rave about all the things that I love about it so far, but… well, work-related mental exhaustion. I need to conserve my energy for the other stuff I need to do tonight.
Fear not, noble readers, for a new Tasakeru chapter will be going up tomorrow, and after my job finishes on Friday, I’ll be off and running with Silent InvenTOYry episode 8. I’mma try my best to make up for the lack of content the past two weeks, and with a vengeance.
– BHS
  • Tasakeru  Book IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 3: Final editing in progress
  • Tasakeru Patreon: 4 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,332 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies, Chapter 37: 10 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: Item shipped, awaiting delivery
  • Hugtto Precure AMV HFIL: COMPLETE!

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 30 – It’s Late and I’m Tired

Week 30 – It’s Late and I’m Tired
I made a new thing and it’s silly. Please watch it:
Work has me exhausted. Gotta crash, sorry.
– BHS
  • Tasakeru  Book IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 3: In progress
  • Tasakeru Patreon: 4 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,341 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies, Chapter 37: 9 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: Awaiting shipment
  • Secret Precure Project: COMPLETE!

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 29 – Secret Precure Project

Week 29 – Secret Precure Project
Another short one this week, sorry. I’ve been spending a lot of time on a Precure project idea that I came up with last week… something that struck me out of the blue, and which amused me so much that I decided to go ahead with it. It’s a lot of extra work on top of all my other projects, which makes me think that I must have some kind of masochistic streak… but I’m pretty consistently cracking myself up while making this, so that makes it worth it. Hopefully, the finished product will amuse at least a few of you too.
At the end of this week, I’m starting a record 12 days of intensive petsitting, so if I seem to have vanish off the face of the earth between then and August 3rd, that’s the reason. I’m trying to get as much done as I can before the job starts. While I’m on duty, I’ll have a lot of hours to burn sitting around while the animals aren’t demanding food or voiding their bladders/bowels all over the place, so I’m hoping the duller moments will inspire some quality material. I can’t complain too much; this job is going to pay for everything I need for the next full Silent InvenTOYry episode and then some. My goal is to get it out as close to the first week of August as possible.
Oh, and hey, tomorrow marks the end of my 30 day YouTube monetization suspension. I removed all the copyrighted stuff, so cross your fingers for a successful and speedy reapplication process, everybody.
– BHS
  • Tasakeru  Book IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 2: COMPLETE!
  • Tasakeru Patreon: 4 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,360 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies, Chapter 37: 9 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: Awaiting shipment
  • Secret Precure Project: ~40% done

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BHS Blogress Report: 2018, Week 28 – BHS, Official Sponsor of Studio TRIGGER

Week 28 – BHS, Official Sponsor of Studio TRIGGER
Yup, just like I figured, this past week was busy as hell. I’m still wiped out, so this will be another short one, but let’s go.
My beloved Studio TRIGGER, of Kill La Kill, Little Witch Academia, and others, has opened a Patreon. I think it’s well worth it to ensure that the staff continues to make awesome stuff, so it was my pleasure to sign up right away as soon as I learned about it. And speaking of TRIGGER… wow, the last few episodes of Darling in the FRANXX were crazy as all hell. There’s good ways to have your story go batshit nuts in the third act, and I’m not sure DitF managed it… but it was a hell of a ride regardless.
Partly because I was so tired from work this week, the conclusion of the latest Stevenbomb blew me the hell away, and I enjoyed it all the more for not realizing until 13 minutes in that it was a double-length episode. And boy howdy did it earn that double length. It was magnificent work by Sugar and the Crewniverse all around.
Sorry to end on a sour note, but: I try to be a kind and patient person, but only to a point. If someone is supporting me and my work, I’m willing to cut them a lot of extra slack. Let it be stated here and now, though, that if someone, say, goes around insulting me behind my back and still expects me to show you respect, their ass is getting dropped. I’ve had too many people take advantage of my good nature over the years to let that kind of thing slide. Let me further point out that it is very unwise to hurl abuse at someone who moderates a large fan community, especially if they’re intending to remain a part of said community. I made it clear in November ’16 that I would not tolerate people trying to instigate drama on my group, and that rule applies to everyone, whether they’re watching me or not. As long as it’s in my power to prevent or put a stop to toxic fandom behavior, I’ll damn well prevent it.
– BHS
  • Tasakeru  Book IV: Twilight’s Dreaming, Chapter 2: COMPLETE!
  • Tasakeru Patreon: 4 Patrons
  • YouTube Sub Count: 3,368 subscribers
  • Book II Appendix: 2 pages done
  • Shattered Skies, Chapter 37: 1.5 pages done
  • Shattered Skies: Viluy’s Database Chapter 3: 3 pages done
  • Silent InvenTOYry Episode 08: Awaiting shipment
  • Steven Universe Commentary: On hiatus

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COPYRIGHT

Tasakeru, tasakeru.com, and all related contents, text, and media are the Intellectual Property (IP) of BHS and BHS Productions, registered in 2009, and may not be modified, reproduced, or changed in any way, shape, or form without the author's express permission. For more information on usage rights, see the From the Author page.

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