Heirs of the Magi News Flash!

***Heirs of the Magi News Flash!***

The annual Samshwords Summer-Winter sale has ended! Thank-you to everyone for your support and interest in my books - and for any other Smashwords authors that you may have checked out during July too!

***Year Three of Harry Potter - After the Epilogue has now been posted at FanFiction.net in time for Harry's 37th Birthday! If you love my Harry Potter fan fiction stories as much as I do; check out this newest installment in the 'After the Epilogue' storyline!

Happy summer - or winter - reading!

Saturday, May 31, 2014

Cassie's Journal - May 31, 2014



Happy 3rd Birthday, Gwyneth.

I’m sure that it will be for her, but my wish for her today isn’t very likely to happen; and her idea of happy is very different than mine.  Let’s just leave that there, since, while I’m thinking about her today; I don’t really want to write much about my precocious little aunt tonight when I really don’t have anything nice to report about her.  Feel free to check out Mom’s ongoing archive about the Hathornes if you want to read about everything we learn from our regular searches of their systems – and through other sources.

Here at home, our day started out amazingly with Tai Chi by the river that was even more special for Michael and me with Rebecca and Lucas watching us from one of the benches – a first for Lucas.  We won’t mess up his reputation by telling anyone else, but Rebecca and I were as impressed with his teary-eyed emotion while watching us work through our forms as we were with the ease in which he accepted the happy hugs and kisses from Ehlana after we were finished our exercises.  Breakfast for twelve was a blast of work and fun too that included having everyone take turns getting ready for the day before and after we all sat down to eat.  Michael and I were on the cooking crew because Lucas, Tim, and Rowen all needed to be heading home early for work or chores; and I helped out with the clean-up too while Violet and Dillon took Lucas out to his farm; Rebecca took her turn in my bathroom; and Michael took care of the tent tear-down after everyone else had grabbed their things and headed out.

After grabbing a micro-shower too and getting dressed for a yard work morning; it was time to mow the lawn and do the rest of my usual chores.  That kept me busy until lunchtime, and then I had just enough time to have another shower and eat a mini sub and some cold salads before my friends started arriving for our afternoon exam study session.  Dad and I had dodged a little rain while working, and another little storm rolled through in the afternoon; but it still seemed like way too nice a day to be stuck inside with our computers, books, and study notes.

It was also a lot of fun!

That statement probably wouldn’t be agreed with by some of my classmates; but I really did enjoy helping my friends – and I’m sure that they’re going to appreciate that a lot next week when our exams don’t end up being nearly as tough for them as they expect.  We had some non-study fun too that included an optional swim; some play time in the back yard that Ethan, Ehlana, Naomi, and Aiden joined us for; and a barbeque dinner that Grandma, Grandpa, Uncle Adam, and Aunt Leanne helped Mom and Dad with so that they weren’t quite so outnumbered by teens and kids.  The guys are getting better every year; but it is still scary to see just how much food a gang of them can eat at one meal!

While Rebecca wasn’t studying with us, she and Michael both have extra time off this weekend to get ready for exams – and so do most of the teens that work at the Inn.  We didn’t have everyone stay for the evening study time after dinner, but more than half of our friends did stay; and there was some bonus fun there because we spent some of that time getting ready for the playing test part of our music exam.  Everyone was ready to call it a night by nine; so it wasn’t long after that before Mom and Dad were down to just six teens and kids in the house – including Michael, Naomi, and Aiden.  Michael and I took care of the bedtime story and some girl and guy chat time when we tucked the four kids into bed for the night; and then we got to have an hour or so of alone time before he needed to get home for the night.

Violet and Dillon are at his house tonight – though they’re probably till out with Jake, Stephanie, Christina, and Josiah right now, and while that has me thinking about how nice it would be to have a sleepover here with Michael; I’m also ready to get a little extra sleep again tonight.  That’s why I skipped a soak in my Jacuzzi and most of my usual bedtime computing except for a bit of family business work that couldn’t be left until next week.  We’re doing another afternoon study session tomorrow, and then, while Michael and I are going to be helping out with the buffets; most of our friends are going to be there for Allen’s fourteenth birthday dinner party.  That won’t be play day fun either; but I’m sure that we’ll still manage to get June off to a great start – especially when Ethan, Ehlana, and I will all get to do that in the morning with our best friends.  I want to end the last bit of time we have left in May in dreamland, so I’d better get right to that before it actually is June.  Until next time…

…Live long and prosper, fellow Magi of the Light!

Cassie's Journal - May 30, 2014



This has been one of those really awesome days, so sit back and relax – this update might take a while!

First of all, the impending arrival of exam week didn’t get in the way of our fun, and neither did a bit of rain; since that only passed through town while we were in classes and doing on last round of exam review.  To be fair, our exams aren’t quite the same as the high school version of our finals; but they are getting tougher as our teachers get us ready for the jump to the next level.  Okay, that doesn’t apply to me; but you know what I mean.

Before I get to the fun part of the report, the top news story at school was the no-at-all-unexpected ‘official’ break-up of Jenny and Garth.  The only real surprise there was that the their little drama dragged on all week; but for all I know, there was some significance to Jenny for ending this month with one boyfriend before starting June as a newly-freed single woman.  There story was mainly big news because Garth does have quite a bit of status as the only niner to play on our championship football team; and Jenny was always one of the most popular girls in her grade even before becoming a cheerleader.  That kind of combination is what high school legends are made of – except that isn’t going to happen in their case.  That news definitely had something to do with why Rowen and I weren’t interested in playing football with the guys at lunchtime, and with Garth needing to blow off some steam; half of the guys wished they weren’t playing either – the half of the guys playing on the other team against him!

Jenny’s break-up also had the potential of messing up our plans for tonight too, but she’d refused Rebecca’s offer to cancel on us so she could be there for her best friend; and made her own plans with a few of the other cheerleaders instead.  That was a pretty good indication that she wasn’t going to have any problems getting over Garth – especially since it sounded like they were having something closer to a party than a wake.  We weren’t having a party tonight, but we did take the night off from studying; and our plans to hang out together quickly evolved into an all-night fun and camping adventure for six.  Rowen and I had already planned on doing a sleepover this morning, but we were both happy to change that to camping when Tim suggested that we could all do that instead.  He was happy too, though his other suggestion to set up three smaller tents instead of two bigger ones for boys and girls was voted down by the five of us who were sure that we would never get parental approval for coed camping quite yet.

The actual parental approval was easy enough, and even Claire was happy to make an extra trip into town early instead of needing to come back for Lucas at eleven or twelve o’clock.  He’ll need an early ride home in the morning; but Mom, Dad, or Violet will do that for him right after breakfast.  While I’m thinking of her, Violet’s doing a sleepover tonight too; with Dillon here with her while the third floor is kid-free.  I’ll take a wild guess that Dillon is not sleeping in the guest room across the hall from Violet; though his overnight bag did get put there when he first came over at dinnertime.

When we were set free from school, Michael and I walked up toward our houses with Rebecca and Lucas while Rowen and Tim did the rounds to drop bags off at home and check in with their parents before meeting up with us at my house.  We had bikes ready so we could go for a ride by then; including one for Lucas and the trailer for Ethan and Ehlana.  Mom had been at the lab for most of the day, but had left early so that she could get the twins from KidZone and be home to do some other work around the house while Owen went to help out at the store for the rest of the day and Andrew stayed and finished a job they had him doing on the main office level.  The camping plan came together before we went on our ride, and Mom decided on a barbeque dinner for twelve too; though she recruited Dad, Violet, and Dillon to help her out with that so that we’d have time to set up tents then instead.

Our ride was Lucas’ first for doing a tour of the construction sites, and while his mother worked on the real estate for the new section of town; he didn’t get over there very often to see the progress.  Actually, since he’s always helping his father out on their farm; he doesn’t usually take very much time to just hang out with his friends.  That probably had a lot to do with why it was so easy for him to get the okay for our camping – he rarely asks for time for himself when they’re busiest on the farm like they are in the spring, summer, and fall.  As I’ve mentioned before, every kid in a small town like ours uses bikes by necessity, but Rebecca isn’t an enthusiast like Michael, Tim, Rowen, and I are; and Lucas feels pretty much the same way that she does.  Some of the country teens bike to school in good weather because it can be nearly as fast as taking the bus; but Lucas isn’t one of them – and not just because he’s had to be there for his younger sister and brother.  They didn’t want to ride the trails when we got to the park after our construction site tour, so we played with Ethan and Ehlana at the playground, and all four boys spent some time on the football field with some of the other guys too.

We had about an hour or so to play before needing to get home, and then we went to work getting two of the bigger tents set up by the river.  Tim, Michael, and Rebecca needed to stop in at their homes to pack a few things for the night, so they did that then too; and we had our campground set up and ready to go by the time dinner was ready.  Ethan and Ehlana had supervised that work; and we – the teens and kids – took our food and ate by the river while leaving Mom, Dad, Violet, and Dillon in peace; but then Mom and Dad took custody of my brother and sister so that we could have some teen-only time for most of the rest of the evening.  We did have to do the clean-up first while the cooks and kids went for a walk and some more play time at the park; but then we went for a canoe ride upriver in three canoes for nearly two hours.

That little adventure was one of the highlights of the day, and though the gulf between grades eight and nine still get in the way at school; that didn’t’ matter at all tonight so hanging out with Rebecca and Lucas was as easy as playing with Rebecca and Jenny used to be for Rowen and me back before they crossed over so far ahead of us.  Lucas is a closet football fanatic, so he gets along great with Tim; and a lot like Michael on the personality side – a fact that Rebecca is appreciating more and more every day.  The conversation time while we paddled was a big part of why the trip was so special to me, and while we haven’t spent much time with Lucas yet; I am definitely going to make sure that we do invite him – and Rebecca – to do more things with us this summer.  Then again, we’ll probably be doing that anyway; since I predict that it won’t be much longer before our friends officially join the couples’ club – though they might also be busy with their own friends then too and not have that much time to hang out with us.  I’ll keep you posted on how that works out!

The river isn’t exactly warm yet, but we were all a bit too warm by the time we got back home again; so jumping into the river for a swim seemed like a good idea – though we didn’t stay in the water for very long.  We were already wearing swimsuits in case we got wet in the canoes anyway – or shorts in the case of two of the guys.  Lucas even managed to survive that swim time without totally losing his ability to do anything while quietly adoring Rebecca; and she was quite happy to get to spend some time with him again when he wasn’t wearing one of his usual baggy shirts that did much too good a job hiding the muscles and abs.

Not that Rowen and I were looking too or anything to know that. ;^)

Dad had set up a campfire for us while we were gone, so after putting the extra canoes and gear away and getting changed out of wet swimsuits; we got everything we needed for that and got started on the next-best part of our night.  Ethan and Ehlana joined us for the campfire, and that’s also when I found out that teen-led campfires can attract a lot of neighborly attention – particularly when the musical entertainment is particularly good.  Michael and I took turns playing guitar, but we sang quite a few duets that Rebecca, Lucas, Rowen, and Tim just let us do without singing along.  Both the guitar playing and the duets were a first for us at a campfire, and while we had some other teens join us for a while – including Violet, Dillon, Jake, and Stephanie – the rest of our audience mostly stayed at home on back porches and listened to us.  As always, singing with Michael is wonderful – and something that we both really love – even when we don’t have much of a chance to do that together sometimes with everything we have on the go.  Hearing quiet rounds of applause after each song from houses all along the river – including ours – was really heart-warming too; and I’m glad that we could help our family, friends, and neighbors to have a little extra fun tonight too.

Jake and Stephanie helped out with the entertainment too by telling a couple of campfire stories to us, but then they went to hang out with Violet and Dillon for a while when Mom and Dad took Ethan and Ehlana inside and sent them off to bed for the night.  Our campfire started to wind down then, but while we put the guitar away; the six of us still stayed around the campfire until it was nearly out – content to relax, chat, and enjoy some cuddle time.  That was more than a little tentative for Rebecca and Lucas; but the awkward and uncertain was offset by the thrill and quiet excitement of sharing those first cuddles together.

We put the fire the rest of the way out by twelve-thirty; cleaned up; and got ready for bed – Rebecca, Rowen, and I doing most of that in my room before heading out to the tents.  The goodnight kisses time was fun and included a little bonus entertainment when Rebecca took the lead and made sure that Lucas wasn’t the only boy going to bed without a kiss.  As far as first kisses go, I wasn’t watching, and won’t comment on the quality; but just the set-up with that being by the river on a beautiful night should make the moment memorable for both of them.  I’ll certainly remember the kiss that Michael and I shared!

Okay, kisses – but that’s mostly because we ended up sitting on the dock and talking for quite a while before joining our respective tent mates again.  We did talk – a little; and our friends kept themselves entertained in pairs too; though we were last to make it into our tents.

That was more than an hour ago, and I’m just getting to this now because it took all of us a while to wind down enough to sleep.  Rowen and I needed some quiet girl-chat time with Rebecca that was mostly about her and Lucas too; but we couldn’t get too fired up about that with the boys right next door to us in their tent.  That was one last little blast of fun, though; so I don’t mind being up this late – even if that does mean that I won’t be getting much sleep for yet another nigh.

It is time to pack up my computer and get what nap time I can before getting on with a busy work and study weekend – starting with sunrise Tai Chi by the river.  That may not sound like a very exciting way to either end May or start June, but I’ll be doing that work and studying with the people I love the most; and after a day like we’ve just finished, I’m fairly sure that I’ll be smiling all weekend even if we don’t manage to have any play day kind of fun.  I don’t want to be napping during our study sessions, though, so it’s time to call it a night.  Until next time…

…Live long and prosper, fellow Magi of the Light!

Thursday, May 29, 2014

Cassie's Journal - May 29, 2014



My report tonight is going to be short again – this time because I’m going to bed early and catching up on my sleep.

Take yesterday, add in the rest of my classmates for our after-school study session; switch from babysitting during baseball to practicing with Rowen and the rest of our team while Mom, Dad, and the twins were at the In for game night; and cut out about three and a half of the four hours of bedtime studying and work and you pretty much have the picture of my day.  Michael and Tim were also at the park during our practice, and played football with Lucas; which gave me a chance to nudge Rebecca and Lucas a bit with an invitation to hang out with Michael, Tim, Rowen, and me tomorrow night.  Talking everyone into taking a night off from exam studying to have some fun wasn’t tough, and with one parent on-site; I was even able to get approval and a ride back home again for Lucas.  I have no idea what we’re going to do yet, and the ongoing risk of thunderstorms will continue tomorrow too; but I’ll make sure that we all have fun whether we get to play indoors or out before we’ll all need to get back to our exam studies for the rest of the weekend.

There was one other difference between today and yesterday – Michael and I got to have a little alone time between baseball and when our families got home from game night at the Inn.  I won’t get into the details; but let’s just say that I’m going to have some very pleasant dreams tonight when I put those memories on replay and repeat.  In fact, getting to that right now sounds like much more fun to me than playing with my computer anymore; so, until next time…

…Live long and prosper, fellow Magi of the Light!

Cassie's Journal - May 28, 2014



It’s almost four o’clock, and I’m beat; so let’s keep this short tonight.

Tai Chi; breakfast; school – all pretty much a repeat of yesterday.  Ditto that for after-school exam study time; except add three more classmates.  Add a dash or two of rain here and there this afternoon and mix in some playground time with Ethan, Ehlana, Naomi, and Aiden while the parents were at baseball practice; and that takes us up to bedtime – at least for the twins.

Since then, I’ve had my Magi lesson with Mom, some Jacuzzi time with language study multi-tasking, and another four hours and change of bonus study and work time to get me to this point of exhaustion.  The good news there is that I’m taking the next week and a half or so off from all but the ‘must-do’ bedtime computing.  I’ll keep up with my family business responsibilities; but it’s time for a break from the language and archives studying while I’m busy with just a bit too much of everything else right now.

I’ll need to be at full power every day if I want to help my friends and classmates have fun while we finish getting ready for our exams and write them next week.  While taking those tests isn’t a problem for me, that doesn’t mean I can’t relate to the stress some of my friends are feeling now; and I definitely can help with making the work more fun – and cheering them on.

Doing that won’t be very effective if I don’t get at least a little sleep, though, so that’s all for now, folks.

Live long and prosper, fellow Magi of the Light!