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Author Topic: Will
shimiqua
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Hello. My name is Will, I am fourteen, and in no way associated with the advocate. We don't live in the same story.

I am the hero in my own story. I'll try to tell you a bit about myself, in the unflowered language of my author's speaking.

I love to read, and I read along as she writes this. My favorite books at present are, in no particular order: Hollinshed Chronicles, John Stow's Annals, Belleforest's Histoires Tragiques, oh and Brokes translation from the italian of Bandello, Novelle, and Goldings great englishing of the Metamorphoses of Ovid.

I am the son of a butcher named Jack, who cannot be bothered to read, and does not know how to write more than his own name, and doesn't need to. He was the Chief Alderman in Stratford, he wears red robes and tells stories no one listens too.

My mother Mary is kindly and slightly off-centered, if I may say so. I've several brothers and sisters, none of them be important to my story, though my favorite is my sister Anne. She's young, seven, golden haired and firery of tongue. The girl should have been born talking, she tries to make up for the silence of her first year now with a constant chatter only I have the patience to listen to. When I have need for her to be silent, I tell her my stories.

I love words. Words, words, words. Ha! That's my life. As writers you know this. There is magic in words. Fairies and flowers. Seas and ghosts. Monsters and horrors, angels and gods.

If you don't laugh at me, I'll tell you a secret. I would like very much to write for a profession.

Ha, You laugh, and it tis fool thing to wish. I shall be a butcher, as my father. And perhaps a drunkard, as my father, And certainly a father as my father.

God help us all.

[This message has been edited by shimiqua (edited May 12, 2009).]

[This message has been edited by shimiqua (edited May 13, 2009).]


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Ben Trovato
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Well met, Will.

You sound rather defensive about your love of words. Is it frowned on? Do you spend so much time poring over your books that you neglect your chores? What does your mother think of it?

What kind of stories do you tell your sister?


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shimiqua
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Ben, well met, sir.

What young man would not be idle, had he the opportunity to sail instead in the world on the mind? Heaps of trouble, constant from every direction comes to me by my love of words. For idleness, aye, and else. To the trouble my words cause with the young set of women here in Stratford.

I am a pretty youth, I admit, strong of shoulder, though lean perhaps for my youth. But any flaw I have is forgotten by the fairer sex, when I let loose the magic of words. I approach young lass, and disect her beauty, what there be, and she is mine for a quarter of an hour until the mothers (and they are wise to my adventuring) spot me out, and draw me hense from their daughters eager arms.

What does my mother think of it? My mother let me loose upon the world when I was eight years old. If I come home at night, my mother does not care. She does not fuss over me as she does my siblings. She told me once that I was not her natural born child, and that I was a pox to her. As I said before, she is a bit mad in the head, taken to dreadful highs and morbid lows.

You wish to know my stories as well? I am eager to tell. The stories I would love to tell are full of pirates, and demons. Monsters and horrors. But my true love, my young sister Anne, she loves tales of fairies, and lovers, magic and happy endings.
My stories have a bit of all that.

Perhaps I am defensive about wanting to write for my profession, though I would say it is only because of the impossibility of it.
There is no way to be a writer from Stratford. Not to mention that the writers I love are so much better than I. I... It is impossible, yet I hope for it.

I'll tell you more, though you did not ask for more. In my writing, I sometimes see beauty, yet there is other times, so much muddy immaturity. There is a girl in Stratford, Katherine Hamlet(A plague of a girl, never falling for my lines, speaking with witty lines of her own.) Well, she paints, poorly. Yet occasionally, her hand twitches unconsiously, and there on the page is a proper profile. It is as if she sneezes and her sneezes are more talented than she is. As it is in my own writing. I can see moments... Yet in the whole, the idea is a broken one.


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satate
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Will, how did you learn the read? Are there many books? Do you buy your books? Do you write down your stories? If you do is paper and ink expensive in your world? What do your parents think of you wasting money on paper and ink, or do you memorize your stories, or write them on a different format? Do you have to help your father in his shop or do you just wander free all day? Can your mother read? Are there schools?

Is there magic in your world?


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shimiqua
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I realized I have spoken a half truth and wish to remedy that. My fathers name is not Jack, but John. He wishes to be called Jack, for reasons of his own making, though in truth, and on record, his name is John.

He mumbles to himself on occasion, words he finds humerous, of Jack being nimble and quick, though gazing on the portly stature of my father you will find him neither nimble nor quick, and I dare say if he jumped over a candlestick he would catch fire from the fumes always on his clothing.

We recently returned from the wagons of the Coventry plays.
Dreadful things plays, actors leaping about in masks and tattered costumes, scaring poor Anne near to death. One actor in particular, playing Herod of Jewry, leapt about screaming as if we were at the back of the Collesium, and not three yards hense, and covered in his verbage spittle.

Plays are horrible things.

I can't wait until we can go again.


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shimiqua
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Sorry Miss Satate, I did not see your reply before I spoke.

I was taught to read as are all children, I suppose, by my mother. I was taught how to enjoy reading by the teacher of my grammar school. Yes, I am educated. My teacher is Thomas Jenkins.

Some book I own yes, some I win in a gamble from my classmates. I borrow a few from Master Jenkins, always sure to put back on their shelf before he returns and notices them gone. That's how he taught me to love to read. I've had to learn to read quick in order to not catch the paddle.

The bridge builder Clopton has established a scholarship for the best pupil, and it is well believed that I shall be accepted. I very possibly will attend the University of Oxford.

I write on the backs of used butcher paper. Grizzly perhaps the idea be, I find inspiration though, from the grease and flesh left behind.

How I spend my time? I attend school, I help my father. I wander the Forest of Arden searching for a quick cuddle.

Is their magic in my world? Ah Miss Satate, You are a gypsie, a prophetess. Indeed there is, though I have told none I've found it.

The magic I've found comes from a book. It is a book of spells. I found it underneath the players carriage while that Harod of Jewry spat on his audience.

I borrowed the book. I shall return it the next time I see a play. It shall not be hard to find that spitter, the world will know him by his dreadful lack of talent.

I should probably not tell you more. Not of the dark woman, or the tall ships I see in my dreams.

[This message has been edited by shimiqua (edited May 13, 2009).]


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Corky
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Will, do there happen to be any Hathaways in your neighborhood?
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shimiqua
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Good day, Corky.

Strange names you have here. By the Hathaways, I assume you mean the vixen Anne.

I see a love match in your prose, and it is not intended for me, of that I assure you. Anne is two and twenty years of age, not that it is polite to tell you a woman's hidden number, and a woman of a reputation larger than my own. I am not surprised that you have heard of her, only surprised that she is not on here before me, bossing you all around and controlling you with fair looks and empty traps.

I am off to School. Wish me well, as I walk the slow and unfortunately steady pace. I am a leaf on a river, no chance to flee from current that is my life.
~Will.

[This message has been edited by shimiqua (edited May 13, 2009).]


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Corky
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Best wishes to you at school, Will. For one who loves words, may it fulfill all of your wishes.
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Kitti
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Will, if 'tis not too impertinent... might I ask if your mother has ever sought the advice of a physician or cunning woman? It sounds as if her humors might be out of balance....

While I'm on impertinent subjects - what do you think of your church? Your local priest? The Queen?

On to more mundane questions: What do you do on market days? Do you know how to swim? What books have you read? Do you own an almanac and, if so, which almanac-writer do you prefer?

You wish to attend Oxford - what made you decide Oxford rather than Cambridge? And do you know which college you wish to attend? Will you visit any of England's other great cities before you return home again?

My curiousity is boundless.


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shimiqua
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Miss Kitti, I feel strange calling you that, as if we were familiars.

Perhaps it is an issue of phlem or bile, I am no expert in matter of medicine. My mother leaves me be, and I in return share the favor. Her inner doings be her own, and I should not interfere.

I find the more I try to fix things the worse things become.

I appologize for my lack of verbosity and wit this afternoon. I feel my heart is broken, and all hopes for the future be dashed. Perhaps my humors themselves need examining, though I doubt doctoring can heal grief.

I attend church every sunday with my family, read my scriptures in my moments before school. I believe. Though there is reason the Bible is not on my list of favorite books. Neither, in fact, is Williams Lyly’s Grammar, though I read that often enough as well.

The Vicor Heicroft and his wife, I do not hold in good esteem, though for good reason.

The Queen, Elizabeth. I think she is fair skinned, and full of wit. I do not believe my fathers stories of her, though I wonder if he ever did meet her.

I love the water, and I am good at swimming. I enjoy hunting, and shooting. I am adaquate drawing a bow, Cards, Jumping, wrestling, hand to hand fighting, football of course. Tennis. Fencing. Top spinning, marbles, bowls, hoop rolling, hide and go seek. Blindsmans bluff. Card games I like Gleek, Brag, and post and pair. Do not play chess. Never have, never will.
I sometimes help my father on market days, sometimes I help the other butcher of the town. I enjoy to watch the fireworks.

As for books, and your question on the Almanacs. I read everything I come across be it a label, an almanac, or a dirty word enscribed in a tree.

I hope to one day be the one who writes all the dirty words I know in every tree of this blasted forest.

I tell you one thing. The Book of Moons, of which I ascribed earlier mention. The book I borrowed from the talentless actor.

That book I wish I had never read.

As for my choice of Oxford. The scholarship I work to win is to attend Oxford. That is everything. It is not that I am partial to the one over the other, it is that it is my only option. If there were a way for me to leave this village and attend C, I would.

And yes, I would like to see else. I would leave this hour, this dark and broken hour, for a thousand years if I could.

[This message has been edited by shimiqua (edited May 13, 2009).]


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Corky
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The Bible, you say?

What year is this?


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Kitti
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Unless I'm very much mistaken, 'tis the 19th or 20th year of the reign of Queen Elizabeth, the year of our Lord 1578 (or thereabouts).

Will, can you tell us more about this terrible book of yours? What does it look like? Why did you not stop reading it once you realized what it was, or did you not know until the end? Who else knows you have this book, or is it a carefully held secret?


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shimiqua
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Sir, Corky, does not your family have a bible? I thought all families had.

You be not mistaken, Miss Kitti, on the year of my writings. I see you are well familiar with my world. Have we ever met, you and I?

Because the Kitti asks, I shall speak on this Book of Moons. I wish to avoid all thought of this devilish book, though for a fair one, I shall be forced to answer.

It is not a large book, about the size of one hand. It is bound in leather that looks black and shrivelled like elven skin. There a words enscribed in golden thread in a language I couldn't understand, until, looking deeper, I found I could. The Book of Moons, it says and a warning "Do not open this book, upon peril of your life." Being a curious boy, I would have read the book without the warning, though with it, I could not open the pages quick enough to fit my fancy.

When I opened the book, the binding broke, and the gossammer pages lit until glowing as a firefly. There on the page, in the strange, though comprehensible language, was another warning, and then every page held a different spell. The writing of the spells have a rythum I have never read before. A pat a pat a pat a pat, as if the words were drumming in my head as I read them. I could not put the book down, the moment seemed fiction even as I lived it. I felt I was within one of my stories, and I was not frightened.

Even when I finished the reading, I was exhilarated, as I finally had a secret worthy of any boy. I did not share this secret, a secret shared is no secret. A magical secret shared might lose its magic.

I did not realize the horrifying nature of this book, until nearly fortnight hense. I tried to mend my situation in life, and found it worsened. I shall tell you how. I wish to be unburdened.

My father, as you know, is a drunk. He was also a man of good station, until his drunkeness caused him to lose his title. Whispers came then, came from all around Stratford, that this drunken man's son should not be honored with the scholarship. My hopes felt dashed in front of me, and I was ashamed to be a Shakespeare. Ashamed to be his son. I thought, perhaps with the magical spells of that terrible book, that I had my answer.

I remembered a spell written within the book. A cleansing spell. I tried to clean out the devil of alchohol that haunts my father still. Following the words of that book, I made a fairy ring. A circle of woodsy mushrooms if the name be different where you are. I went to bring my father to walk within the ring, yet he argued with me. He was far past drunk, and did not want to walk within the forest with his son. I pled, and argued, lied, and pulled his arm, until finally he came. A strange wind blew within the forest as my father followed me, too slow for my hopes. When we reached the fairy circle... I found my sweet sister Anne there, hawthorn blossoms in her hair, dancing in angel circles. My sweet angel sister. So pure and fair, and frail. She had no need of being cleansed, but the magic still took.

Tears come to my eyes to tell you more. As I slept that night, a fitful sleep full of dreams of a dark woman, Calipso herself singing on a black ship, sweet Anne was forever silenced. It is too fresh for me to talk more.

I say one thing before I go to wipe my eyes on more than my sleeve. I have buried that book. Those monster words are hidden from me now, though they do not stop their calling to me. I hear the pat pat pat of the drumming in my dreams. I fear I shall hear it forever.

[This message has been edited by shimiqua (edited May 14, 2009).]


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Corky
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It has not been that many years since people were burned at the stake for having any part of the scriptures in English. I have the work of Tyndale, who was one of those martyrs, but there are other Bibles as well.

Tyndale's words are poetry, and you do well to study them if that is the Bible you have, Will. They lift English above the vulgar and make it sing praises to Him who first gave them to us.

As for the other book, you are right to bury it, Will. Though the Spanish with their Inquisition have been turned from our shores, such writings could still get you burned.


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Kitti
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Ah, Will, that sounds like the devil's own book! 'Tis well that you buried it; did you but hold your priest in higher esteem, I would advise you to seek his counsel, but luckily we Protestants know that true believers need no such intermediaries for our prayers. Still, I would confess and take communion soon, if I were you...

I very much doubt that we have ever met - I live in a little village about eight miles south of the honourable city of London. If you ever make it to see our great capital, write me; if we meet Saint Paul's church-yard, I might even buy you a book from one of the booksellers there.

(On an "out-of-character" note - I know a bit about sixteenth-century England. Feel free to shoot me an email if you have any questions. I can't guarantee I know the answers, but I might be able to point you towards places where you can find said answers.)


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shimiqua
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(*Any information or advice about the world at this time would be more than welcome. Please point out mistakes you see, although some errors are on purpose. For example. John Shakespeare was called a glover, and though it is true he made gloves with the leftover leather, I believe he was a generally considered a butcher and history people have been trying to clean up his image. I want Will to seem more a common though remarkable boy.*)

In truth, my author be more rebust with words that I.

Tis an mixed mood about faith in my village. The beliefs of the church mingle with unbelievable stories and superstitions of the common. I do not even mention the Papists and how held over beliefs confuse even a learned man such as your Will.

To me, before the dark book, it was as if all religions were stories, and all stories were true. I didn't think to fear for my soul until the magic proved real.

Miss Kitti, to meet with fair maiden at the booksellers t'would be a dream. To place that dream in London town would make the dream fantastical. And then to not have to pay...

Sir Corky, for you to remind me of my safety, I thank thee sir. I was to tell my brother Gill. Though I trust my brother, tis good to keep this from him. I had not thought of the flames.

I shall be repentant of my part in the loss of my sister. I cannot help but to be angry at my father. If only he had come sooner, if he had but listened... I find my grief is all anger now, and misplaced hope.

Thank you both for your words, I hope they do not end. Life is dreary cold now, with my sister's light extinguished. I hold on but with narrow thread to retain my schooling, and all thoughts of the scholarship are gone.

Perhaps the Morrow will bring more light. Lord I pray it so.


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satate
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Hello Will, my name is Emily. I am very sorry for your loss. Try not to hold guilt to closely for could canker your soul. Have you done anything more with the book? Have you met anyone else who is accquainted with magic. Perhaps your sister could be saved?
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shimiqua
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Miss Emily,

Hello Miss. Tell me of yourself, your age perhaps and particulars. If you tell me of your beauty I will sing it in a poem.

I find my time now much freer since I've been dismissed from school. I thought I would be disapointed, losing the scholarship to Bell, no longer the shiney pupil in the eyes of the town. Now they only see me as a player on the hearts of their daughters. I would complain, though I enjoy that role and relish playing such.

As to the Book of Moons, upon hearing your companies words and strong warnings against said book, I sought out the book from it's hiding spot intent on burning the thing. Yet as I dug beneath the dove house I found the book absent. Someone had removed it, yet the drumming in my mind still played. I followed the drumming sound. I know that sounds strange, and to me as well it was. I find nothing involved with this devil book behaves the way it is intended.

As the drums beat their loudest, I saw her. Kate, I call her, though Katherine Hamlett is her true name. I call her Kate, or Katie, because she hates to be called such. I tried to convince her, though Kate will not be swayed with honey words or true. She has the Book of Moons still against my judgement, hidden under her bed, the one place I have no intention of seeking out.

I shall continue to warn her, as the gentleman I try to be.

My sister is far gone, buried two months now by my reckoning.
I would save her if I could, but she is gone forever from this world to my shame and grief.

That plague of a girl does not know what darkness she is seeking. I shall do my best to convince her.


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satate
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You have a flattering tongue Will, though I fear I am much to old for you. I turned thirty this year and am a plain woman with short dark hair. This Kate of yours though sounds interesting. Do you worry about her?
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shimiqua
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I try not to think about the monstrous Kate, nor the less horrible book. I find my attempts to cast her from my mind, or to asway her from the book are both equal in their failing. She still has it, though I have made many attempt to seek it out of its resting place with no success. That Kate is as chaste as a nun.

I do not worry, however, for her, she keeps it from me only for spite. She knows I want the book, though she does not understand why. She cannot read the words. I do not understand why the words work for me and not for her. In my dreams the dark lady reads the book...

My appologies, I am late for the market.


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