Meanwhile, there was yesterday, most of which I spent putting together the cover for Subterranean Press' chapbook of The Merewife prologue. I began with a photograph of a cave bear skull that I took years ago, and one of Spooky's photos of a half moon, spent a couple of hours in Photoshop and came out with something appropriate that I liked. I considered adding some visual reference to the Midgard Serpent, but was afraid the cover might become too busy. Sometimes, it's nice to work with images instead of words (though, when I work with words I'm primarily concerned with translating them from images into words and back into images). I didn't get Chapter Eight started. Hopefully, I shall today. The book has finally reached that point where all the parallel narrative lines are converging — the stories of Soldier, Emmie Silvey, and the Daughter of the Four of Pentacles. Fire and demons and vast underground spaces. Ghouls and temporal contrarities and a blizzard in Rhode Island. It's a little intimidating, stepping back into all that. But The End is close now, only weeks away.
We took a long walk after sunset last night. At this point, these walks are probably the only thing keeping me from complete physical disintegration. We walked through Freedom Park and watched the bats. We have begun to take great delight in the local Myotis population. We spoke with familiar cats. With the sun down, the heat had abated (though not the humidity). There were jogging yuppies, happy-to-be-out dogs, streetlights, the shadows beneath old trees, dragonflies, and a vacant lot (with piles of flagstones shrouded in kudzu and honeysuckle) that someone had imprisoned behind a chain-like fence. It was a regular adventure.
Final Fantasy X-2, which I am at least as addicted to at this point as I have ever been addicted to a video game, has me running around all of Spira rescuing wayard cacti so that the Cactuar Nation can be saved from a particularly nasty fiend. I look at it this way — FF X-2 is helping to teach me whimsy; to look at it any other way can only lead to madness. Also, I seem to have developed a taste for manga. Last night, when I went to bed, I read Volume 1 of Sang-Sung Park's The Tarot Cafe (TokyoPop), which I quite liked. The girl-boys (this is way beyond androgeny) are delicious. And I was amazed that the intended audience for this book is 13+, but amazed in a good way. In a mere 176 pages,The Tarot Cafe managed to get in bestiality, masochism, homosexuality, and love dolls. Wow. Maybe there is hope for the future, after all!