Sunday, August 30, 2009

Mystery to Solve

Ugh! Does anyone else endure the endless torment of an eight-year-old brother constantly prowling around? Good grief! Mica is driving me nuts. What really annoys me is that he enjoys doing it so much.

I decided to come down here to the public library to spend some uninterrupted research time online, since I know my little brother wouldn't dream of stepping foot in here. He never gets past the video arcade anyhow.

I've got several big mysteries to solve, and one of them is here in my hand. I sure wish you could see this rock. I got it from the super-awesome treasure room that we call Grandpa's Attic. It's an odd looking piece of a crystal called chalcedony, also known as bloodstone. This one is mostly green with red flecks scattered about. One edge is jagged like it's been broken, but I don't care. I fell in love with it when I first noticed it last summer—so, I begged Grandpa to put it on a necklace for me. At first, he got really weird about it. Eventually, he agreed and I've been wearing it ever since.

I know this sounds a little crazy, but sometimes the bloodstone heats up. For no reason, it just starts getting warmer and warmer. One day after school, I was walking down the sidewalk to the town library when I felt it starting to heat up. I thought it was going to burn a hole in my neck! But then, just as quickly as it had gotten hot, it returned to normal.

I'm still trying to figure it out. I hate not knowing something. And this just doesn't make sense. I don't have a lot of demands and expectations for this world, but I do expect for things to make sense! As Caverns City's youngest geology professor, I'm familiar with all of the minerals on earth, including chalcedony. But, not this piece of chalcedony. I knew it was special when I first saw it. It's like it called out to me . . .

Here is a link I found to a picture of a chalcedony bloodstone.


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Hey! It's me, Madison!

Hey, guys! My name is Madison Terrence, but my friends call me Maddy. Sometimes I even let Mica, my irritating little brother, call me Maddy. We live in a cool underground house that my Grandpa Rocky built in western Virginia. You can't tell it from the street, but it's a four-story mansion. I like that it's hidden. Sometimes I wish I was hidden. Whether it's the mysterious weirdness down at Grandpa's old rock quarry, or my personal curse, being able to remember everything I've ever seen or read, there is always someone in Cavern City ragging on me about it.

Anyway, back to my house. It's built into the side of a mountain, so all you can see from the street is the flat front of a rock-sided house appearing to only have an upstairs and a downstairs. Everything else is hidden underground, with the fourth floor carved up into the rock, and the bottom floor dug down into the earth. You probably think, with my house being built into a mountain, that I don't have a back yard to hang out in. Not true. I have the best backyard in town!

It's a huge-mongous limestone cavern that is four stories tall, just like our house. And it's from the top floor of the house where you can get the best view of The Grand Hall and it's wonderful speleothems. Mica hates when I use the proper term for cave formation, but speleothems is what they are. I would know, since I teach geology classes at the nearby university. But that's only on the weekends. Since I'm 11-years-old, I still have to deal with the fifth grade during the week.

The entire top floor of the house is Grandpa's Attic, a treasure room filled from floor to ceiling with some pretty wild stuff that he's collected since he was young. That's a lot of collecting! I spend a lot of time up there exploring the cabinets, racks, and shelves of rocks, minerals, fossils, and some really weird artifacts that I still haven't figured out yet.

More about the treasure room next time . . . gotta run . . . my obnoxious brother just pushed his way in here . . .


Monday, August 24, 2009

The Krybosian Stairpath

My first novel, The Krybosian Stairpath, will be published this fall. It is the first in a series of middle-grade novels featuring a brilliant young heroine named Madison Terrence. She is a fifth-grader during the week, and teaches college geology classes on the weekends.

Madison will be posting updates here on her life, her world, and the world of Krybos.