When I Went Back Home… (& Mah Plans – 14/07)


I’m back.
I’m daft.

If I had any sense, when Raven prepped her posts for our time I away I would have done the same because there was no way I could have prepared one for this morning feeling as I did when I woke.

I’ve had the most AMAZING weekend in months. I saw so much, said so much, felt so much, did so much…. This is my attempt to talk sensibly about what happened to me this weekend and how much fun it was.

If you don’t know by now, I’m a LARPer. This means running off into the woods at regular intervals to pretend to be someone else. Living that other person’s life, fighting their battles, feeling their pains, laughing at what tickles them. It is the ultimate escapist hobby with utterly trumps all the other RPG I do (though, of course, I love them in different ways).

My LARP is Herofest and this event, took place from Friday into Sunday. I took my old character Trya Fenwyn with me and returned to a land still reeling from events that took root when I was last there two years before.

Holy. Freakin’. Wow.

First, there have been changes. Lots of changes. Some of them good, some not so good, but none of them bad. There were new faces (players) and new characters (proper ones and NPCs). There were old characters returning from the dead or becoming inhabited by new powerful entities that retained their memories but remained different people.

There were demons. Rituals. Funeral pyres. Games. Foraging. Revenge. Laughter (rather maniacal laughter, at that). Death. Resurrection. History lessons. Dances. Gifts. Battles. Ribbons. Prizes. Letters.

I want to take you through the whole event step by step, as I have in the past, but I can’t right now. And by the time I’ve recovered enough, the moment will be gone.

Instead, let me talk to you about how it felt.

When Kylie and I arrived, I hoped out of the car (in just my socks) to open the gate. As I drop that monster of a gate on my bare toe, I hear laughter and gleeful voices from the van behind me in which Kev, John and Laura and smiling and waving. Not because of the comical situation with the gate and my foot, but because I’m there. Because they’re pleased to see me. Because they’re welcoming me home.

Driving along that horrible rutted road to the campsite was like stepping into one of my dreams. The smell of the ferns, the buzz of the insects and the soft squish of sand and pine needles beneath my boots as I leapt out of the car straight into a patch of nettles. My old camping spot beside a twisted up tree root that has tripped me up so many times in the past that I can almost remember the feel of every rough nodule and nub under my fingers. Those annoying birds (I still don’t know what they are) calling in a mix of hoarse shrieks and shrill trills. The giant moths. The feel of the rough tavern walls beneath my fingers. The cracked smoothness of the sinks in the ladies bathroom. The beauty of the site itself, with its old trees, crawling vines and sprawling brambles. Even the pellets of rabbit poo all over the place when moving out away from the camping areas. The grinding roar of three separate chainsaws hacking up firewood and the smell of pulverised wood that follows soon after. Sparks off the fire. Smoke in my hair and clothes. Horsefly bites. The itch of nettle stings. The dirt under my fingernails. The light weight of latex against my ear, held in place by spirit gum.

There’s so much of it but the moment I stepped from the car I knew the truth; I was home. I had returned to one of the few places in which I feel so safe in that I’ll happily get blind drunk to the point that someone else has to lead me back to my tent (not that I did this event). A place I’ve laughed so hard that I got cramps that lasted for hours. A place where someone could be running hard to bash me with a sword or hug me so hard my ribs ache. Or both!

I guess at this point, all I really want to say is thank you. Despite the fun I had at Empire in September, I know the truth now; Herofest is my LARP. The players are my LARP family and I don’t ever again want to leave for quite so long. I might be forced to, but I’ll always return. I know that now. Thank you guys. Thank you so, so much!line break, swirling graphics, from openclipart

Last Week

I got more done than I thought I would. Not everything, but enough that, actually, I should be patting myself on the back rather than fretting like I am currently. Oh well, it’s what I do.

Continue to write, on average, 2000 words per working day (this week that’s three days) on WTRE.
Eeeeeeyup. 7204 words in three days. Not miles over, but enough to keep my happy that I’m on track.

Properly outline the parallel timeline aspect of WTRE so it’s ready to write when the main storyline is done.
Yep. Done. In fact, the main storyline is complete, so I should just be working on Saar’s sequences now. And that is, in truth, what slowed me down the most. I probably could have written more (not that there’s anything wrong with what I have done!).

Update the WTRE page of this blog to better reflect its current state.
Heh, no. I threw this goal in as an aside; I didn’t really expect to get to it. And I didn’t. Going forward I’m going to leave out silly goals like that if I know there’s no way I’m going to manage.

Enjoy the hell out of my LARP! Squeeeeeeeeee!
Heh, yep. See above.

This Week

Now that all those things are done, I think I need to slow down a smidge and do the other work that I always forget about when I’m drafting. This is a slight change to my usual pattern of goals.

  1. Update the WTRE page of this blog to better reflect its current state.
  2. Continue to write, on average, 1000 words per working day (this week that’s five days) on WTRE.
  3. Put together the last sections of this month’s newsletter and issue it to subscribers.
  4. Get at least one of my solo website freebies complete.

Lots to be getting on with. Done, done and done again. I’ll catch you on Saturday. 🙂
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About Ileandra Young

I'm a thirty-*mumbles* year old (purple loving, cheese worshipping) author of fantasy, juggling a pair of beautiful twin boys with my burning desire to make up stories and write them all down. When I get the chance, I play games, listen to music, and in days long past I even ran a radio show. Though I occasionally write non-fiction, my heart lives in fantasy and my debut novel, Silk Over Razor Blades is now available through Amazon along with part two of the trilogy, Walking The Razor's Edge.
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13 Responses to When I Went Back Home… (& Mah Plans – 14/07)

  1. sallyedmans says:

    Yay! I had a similar experience. I’ve not been gone as long as you, but I’m still incredibly glad to be back. I now consider HF weekends to be part of my recovery process – they boost my morale, give me an opportunity to socialise and allow me to come back stronger. I can’t wait to get my Roxie on again.

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    • There’s lots to be said for an experience like the one we all had. I know my buddy Len has the same feeling about his LARPs and his situation is not unlike yours.

      And did I hear a juicy rumour that Roxie might be joining the Summer Stars? 😉 That would be delish. ^_^

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      • sallyedmans says:

        Roxie is indeed joining the Summer Stars. She had an alignment shift over the course of the weekend (Evil -> Neutral), and I just don’t think I could cope with the CA any longer… especially on my own again. I don’t know whether I’ll make it in September, but I’ll be going all out to make as many as I can next year.

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        • It can’t be easy being a faction all on your own. How on earth did you manage to get anything done?

          And though I would love to make September I doubt I will. Though I do have some £ in the pot for the next event. Whichever one that happens to be. ^_^

          Also… Neutral is far more like a Summer Star than people seem to believe. 😉

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        • sallyedmans says:

          I didn’t get much of anything done – especially being a white sash. I spent so long trying to figure out the plot (and having a long sit down with Paul trying to figure it all out in my head) that I missed the Dwarven Balls, which was one of the 3 big things for NCs. I mostly just floated about and watched what was happening other places and tried to avoid getting ritually sacrificed by The Legion.

          My opinion of the Summer Stars has never been that they are a bunch of nice goody-goodies, like so many seem to assume. It’s improved since my last event (I won’t mention why here *ahem*), but mostly you guys just seem to have plenty of RP going on, and lots of people who are fun to be with IC and OC.

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        • We are a fun bunch, make no mistake. 😉
          There’s plenty of theories about that but I’m just glad I landed on my feet where they’re concerned. Even if I lose Trya I’ll return to the Stars with someone else.

          BTW… The Legion are scary as hell! -_-

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        • sallyedmans says:

          Oh yes. I was more than a little terrified wandering into the ritual circle with them.

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        • Oh yes, what even happened with that? Was that before or after soul jar? Because Diz and Kalena were supposed to be in there too and it just didn’t go that way (after soul jar).

          I got so confused towards the end; too much happening all at once! A bit like SORB 😉

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        • sallyedmans says:

          Trying to keep it brief… The Legion decided I didn’t have to die, but I would have to kill “my teacher” with the Touch of Death. I was concerned it might be Morgoth, but was told as an aside that summoning “my teacher” would not summon Morgoth, so be not afraid. Basically, Roxie doesn’t do much off her own back but would rather let everyone else panic and decide whether things need to be done, so she just waited for someone else to arrange it all for her… and that turned out to be The Legion. The teacher turned out to be nobody in particular, just Matt in a cloak. I totally pwned him with ToD, which makes me the character to have cast the most deadly piece of magic in the system – not bad for a white sash!

          The soul jar (Rashnag’s one) was offered up to the ritual circle to empower the ritual. What Roxie didn’t tell anyone was that offering it to the ritual circle should get it to the same place as if she took it there herself, just a bit faster. She didn’t like relinquishing control, but she didn’t feel bad and it shouldn’t affect any potential return to his body by Lady R!

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        • Heh, great round up. That’s a skill I just don’t have.

          But ToD?! Blimey, remind me not to mess with Roxie! That’s a bit badass really. Though the way the system is changing, I think white sash players need that sort of firepower to prevent themselves getting dead-ed good ‘n quick.

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        • sallyedmans says:

          I don’t think it would work if she ever tried it again! It seemed to be a response to the “oh crap, how do we kill a white sash?” problem, which turned into an “oh crap, how does the white sash kill someone?” problem. She has Cause Mortal, but there is no ToD in HF. After much discussion, we decided that although Roxie has Cause Mortals, they don’t work on OR because of the whole non-corporeal thing – which is also why Cause Mortals don’t affect her. It’s a way of RPing complete NC without having to be a pacifist, which is rather nice.

          The next skill I’d take for her would be immune to death magic, because even though it’s irrelevant it just fits the RP, and that’s why I’m there. Basically, she is entirely useless to the system, but RPing her is amazing.

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        • sallyedmans says:

          All that said, I wouldn’t mind it if word got around that Roxie can do ToD. Morgan said of Crow that it’s not the amount of power she can wield that’s scary, but the fact that she never has to.

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        • I can see that. Being able to do ToD is cool, but having people do as their told because they know you can, before you can, is a hell of a lot better. ^_^

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