The Fountain of Thought

Anika Rosenthal LVIII came from a long line of journalists. The very first Anika Rosenthal was a Grandian reporter who covered the famed commune of the Good King Dundermoat. When Seamoore was founded in its place, Anika Rosenthal II became the founder of The Lighthouse, Seamoore’s first newspaper (which was later demolished in the transition from Seamoore to Skymoore, when city planners mistakenly tore down the newspaper instead of the actual lighthouse). And, save for a few rebellious Anika’s who have been ceremoniously excommunicated for becoming lawyers, soldiers, and musicians, every Anika Rosenthal thereafter has worked for some newspaper or another. Continue reading “The Fountain of Thought”

Eulogy for a Hero

“What about Ciara?” Peter asked, chucking a rock into the pond. It skipped all the way across, and even though it wasn’t a very large pond, we were still impressed. Teysha whooped. I clapped. “What about Ciara?” he asked again, after he’d soaked up all the praise.

Teysha snorted. “I like the fairer sex, but not that fair.” She took a particularly grotesque bite of her roasted duck, a sort of physical punctuation. Continue reading “Eulogy for a Hero”

Update: Another Schedule Change

Okay, I know it’s a bad look when three of the last 5 posts on here are not chapters, but bear with me, new readers.

At least through March, Odd & Ends is going be biweekly. When I started doing this project in August 2016, I was unemployed and just generally didn’t have much going on. Now I’m working, I have a more active social life, and I have some other things going on that take time away from this free web series I write. Putting out approximately 2,000 words I’m proud of every week is a lot of work, and I just haven’t been able to make it happen recently.

So anyway, I promise this is not the coming of the end for this series or anything like that, I just need to readjust here, and hopefully I’ll get back on the weekly road soon enough.

Thanks for understanding!

A Brief Update on the Location of Dovetail

On Nestor Pinkly’s list of the top two-hundred and eighty-six best things ever made, item number sixty-four read “change, good.” The second word was added in eight years after the list’s conception, when it occurred to him that some changes were ultimately unfavorable.

Counted among these unfavorable changes was the sudden absence of Nestor’s automaton creation and friend, Dovetail. They had vanished suddenly days prior, when they set out on a quest to obtain an opal for a customer at Odd & Ends. While he admired their dedication, he did miss them terribly. Continue reading “A Brief Update on the Location of Dovetail”

Welcome, New Readers!

If you’re reading this, there’s a very good chance that you were sent here by the Jumbotron message I put out in My Brother My Brother and Me, everyone’s favorite advice podcast for the modern era. If so, welcome to Odd & Ends! I’ve made this post in an effort to help new people get settled.

The series is a mix of episodic and serialized story telling, by which I mean there is an overarching plot with character arcs and an end goal in mind, but I also have a nasty habit of writing tangential stories about side characters.

Frankly the best place to get started is the first arc, Opening Day,  because it sets up the tone, the setting, and the characters pretty well, but if you don’t like playing by anybody’s rules, here are just a few of my favorite stories!

“Have a Safe Walk”

A horror story in which a young man makes some unsettling new friends on the way home from work.

Cold in a Colder World

A story about a woman finding herself and finding peace within art, and helping others to do the same.

Left Behind (Three chapters)

A group of interdimensional travelers get stranded, and have to fight for resources and meaning in a world filled with giants.

Good King Dundermoat (Two chapters)

The Story Keeper, a traveling teller of tales, shares the legend of Good King Dundermoat, a ruler who attempted to defy the status quo, and allow his people to live in peace no matter how great the personal cost.

The Lovers’ Link

Tuck Greenston, a young blacksmith, seeks the heart of Talbot Windomere, the son of a wealthy lord, but can he possibly compete with the man’s many wealthy suitors?

Comings and Goings (Two chapters)

Gwendolyn Bottlehelm, who is growing bored and frustrated with her life, and Linda Arterford, who is struggling to feel at home in a new city, seek comfort and excitement in one another, but have a difficult time finding it.

Dug Pifton’s Brand New Perspective (Three chapters)

Dug Pifton has always wanted to be a druid. Now that he is, he’s beginning to think it may not be all he wanted it to be. But when the birds of Skymoore reveal a deadly plot to wipe out humanity, he discovers that maybe what he actually needs is a new perspective.

Update: January Break

Hey readers,

So, as it turns out, I am only capable of continuously uploading Odd & Ends for about eleven months in a row before needing a break.

I just got burned out after a very busy November/December, so I will be taking January off to recover my brain and prepare the future of the series. The end of Odd & Ends is far off, but I’m starting to get a clearer picture of what it will look like, and I’ve got a lot of exciting stuff on the horizon!

See you in February, and thanks for understanding!

– Jordan

Nestor the Incomparable, Part Three

Nestor Pinkly was not much for regret, nor for thinking ahead, but if he had thought ahead when attempting to save the prisoners trapped in the coffins, he might almost have regretted it, because his instinctual plan involved two spells that he had never used before, and the power involved in casting them might literally kill him.

But when it came to helping others, Nestor Pinkly did not think, he did. Continue reading “Nestor the Incomparable, Part Three”

Nestor the Incomparable, Part Two

Fifty years ago, a dozen gnomes left their homes in the dwarven nation of Barlagtelen, having grown tired of their neighbors disrespecting their careers as entertainers. They made their way to the neighboring woods of the Dol elves, who for a long time hated dwarves and were considered their opposite. The idea of a variety theater troupe was more palatable here, but they were unimpressed by the gnomes’ complete lack of magic in any of their shows.

These gnomes were a statistical impossibility, for it is just as uncommon for gnomes to lack magic as it is for dwarves to possess it, and yet there was not an ounce of magical blood among the twelve. But they didn’t allow this to deter them; what they lacked in arcana they made up for with talent, passion, and showmanship. Whether it be dancing, singing, acting, or acrobatics, these gnomes did it, and they did it well. Continue reading “Nestor the Incomparable, Part Two”

Nestor the Incomparable, Part One

“And that,” Nestor Pinkly said, “is why friendship and joy are the most valuable resources even in a capitalist economy.”

“I think you misunderstood,” the golem replied. “I said gold is the most important thing to me because my body is actually made of it.”

“That was a lovely speech, though,” the golem’s boyfriend added. “Even if it did last a quarter of an hour. So, thank you for that.”

“My pleasure!” Nestor said, saluting the pair. “I hope you two have a wonderful day.”

“Can we get to the bank now, Nestor?” Karessa Plunderton asked. “People are staring.” Continue reading “Nestor the Incomparable, Part One”