Sunday, December 30, 2018

Captain's Personal Log

Captain Stuart Joseph, Starship Parras - Third Fleet

Captain’s Personal Journal: Theta 11- 6
I am by all intents and purposes a free man, at least according to the Court Admiralty. Yet I find myself questioning that designation. I am back in command of the Parras and the fleet, a combined fleet that would otherwise not be under my command. Would the Dainsleif not be nearly a crippled ship then my state would not be so dire.”
“My world has been made whole yet for the first time I feel I am a prisoner, a prisoner in my own world, a world of my making. I am captive to this ship, this command that I aspired to, that which has become the only thing that encompasses my life. Perhaps I have always been a prisoner of my own making. This opportunity to command a starship, a fleet, was a chance to bring this war to a conclusion, at least in my mind. But in my mind I now realize I have become a prisoner to it and the ghost that I have chased my entire career.”
“My entire career. I look back now and wonder why I have dragged this ghost with me. Secrets are meant to stay in the shadows, in the past, yet I have worked at every instance to shine a light into the fine cracks I have uncovered. I have shackled myself to my own unfulfilled quest but now, it seems my quest has come to light, to light at a time when I can ill afford to follow it. Perhaps it is a time of destiny, that all I have worked for should come together at a single point in time. Is this war the fulfillment of my destiny or a fallacy for my own demise? I have unwittingly written the disparate notes of this symphony. Could it be at long last, time to let it play itself out?”

“Close journal.”

From the upcoming novel Battle Wagon, book three of the Home World series.

Monday, December 24, 2018

Twas ...

... possibly one of the most recognizable words this time of year, standing on its own or in conjunction with that verse it is best known for.

This is likely my favorite posting of each year, my favorite day of the year, this day that is Christmas Eve. It has become a tradition of sorts. This is a season of hustle and bustle piled on top of the trials and tribulations of the everyday world we live in. In my profession the Christmas season the world is a hectic place. For nearly four decades I have lived and worked through this busy cycle. Perhaps that is why Christmas Eve is so special to me. All the chaos is finished.

What awaits me this eve is the beauty of a fully trimmed tree that stretches to the sky. This year My Beloved and I have six red stockings hanging from the wooden mantle that runs the length of the fireplace. It is a cozy world though we dare not let the warmth of a fire make its way from the painted bricks, it might melt the secret chocolate that hides deep within the toe of a stocking.

It is a peaceful evening we spend this night together, our house quiet with the absence of a mischievous child. That will change quickly in the morning as Christmas Day explodes in a torrent of wrappings and squeals as presents litter the floor. Some traditions linger for years while others are short-lived. Those are often replaced by new traditions as we age and our families entwine with others. One of my favorite reminiscences from the days of my youth is the wrapping paper photo with my siblings. After all the presents were given out the paper would be piled in the middle of the floor and we would all dive beneath the pile. Our heads would be sticking out and our beloved Aunt Esther would take a picture of us all.

But tonight is the night I relish, the quiet, the scenery of Christmas, the wreaths, the lights and pine garland hanging gently above the red stockings. This is a night it all comes together and I am at peace. Would that it were snowing...

Christmas is a day that is for families, yet we must remember it was begun by a certain family two thousand years ago. They are the real reason for this season, the reason we celebrate family. My decorated tree is a relic of pagan customs, but those customs are blended with the traditions we now hold true and dear. It is a merging of a different kind of family, but a family none the less. We are here for one reason.

I wish all those tonight a very Merry Christmas. My your Christmas Eve be cheerful and filled with love and family.