Monday, September 24, 2012

Viola in The Chaos Child

My notes for my books aren't always in outline form.  Often I write short snippets of what a character is thinking or feeling at a certain point (which is where many of the back & side stories come from).
This is Viola in The Chaos Child when Duke is impaled:

Viola's life, for the most part, has been spent in flux. Growing up in the Network is never easy, but she's flexible. The motto Semper Gumby serves her well. She clings to a few constants - not many, but enough to get her through endless road trips, abandonment, and rebuilding her life. Her constants are this: her father loves her, Aunt Hattie always has her back, and Tobias Duke exists. She doesn't rely on his friendship or wish for his love (except when she does, of course). It's enough to know he's out in the world somewhere.

A month before her twenty-fifth birthday, she loses a constant. Aunt Hattie's decades of betrayal are revealed.  She repays that betrayal with torture and release.  Vengeance does little for the ache in her heart. Another constant is shaken. Her father isn't a victim but a cold, calculating monster. He loves her but hurts her, and she tries to separate Demon from Daddy. It's hard, though, when the devil wears a beloved face.  She's been Daddy's Girl all her life.  It's a hard title to lose.

The third constant evolves. Not only is Duke in the world, he's in her life. In her head. In her bed. He becomes her rock, her safe harbor, every cliché she can think of, her heart and soul. While her world crumbles around her feet, she wraps her arms around him and holds on for dear life (sanity). Throughout Sebastian's detox, anxiety over her father ( the Daddy-Demon), fearing for Finn's life, and guilt over Granny's injuries, her remaining constant runs through her mind like the chorus of the annoyingly catchy pop songs Olivia used to love (and there's more guilt added to the load). At least I have Duke. At least I have Duke. AtleastIhaveDuke. AtleastIhaveDuke.

Until one bright afternooon, she doesn't. An ambush. Folists (sweet mercy, haven't they done enough damage to the Duke family). A traitor in peril. That damned Duke honor. Before she can blink, he's on the ground with blood pooling around him and static in their link. The third constant wobbles. Flickers.

Viola's fists clench. Her heart stills. The breath catches in her throat. Fireworks burst behind her eyes, and heat sears her skin. Power bursts from its prison.  Without that last constant, her world dissolves into flames. Chaos.

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