Jennifer Sue

Time on My Hands Chapter 62 - 413-415 CE: The Nation of Barmaz

Time on My Hands
Chapter 62: 413-415 CE: The Nation of Barmaz

Raben set up a base to continually train and supply Raven Raiders in Senegal. Recruits form all over the Clan Corvo headed there to be trained and indoctrinated into the Raven Raider mystique. The Clan Corvo expansion continued in Mexico. In December 413, 6 Raven Raider divisions swept south easily overwhelming Cerro de las Mesas and the smaller city states stopping at the Coatzacoalcos River, 135 miles south of Veracruz for and for 60 miles inland from the coast. In 414 the arrival of an additional 3 Raven Raider divisions allowed them to move 34 miles north of Veracruz, bringing a total of 125,000 people into the Clan. Also in 414, the Raven Raiders from Cancun drove west from the Rio Candelaria 210 miles sweeping through the Mayan city/states of Palenque and Tortuguero linking with the Veracruz at the Coatzacoalcos River bringing in 60,000 natives.

A Summer's Odyssey - Now on Kindle

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After his mother dies the only option Kris has is to take his kid sisters to grandma's house. But Massachusetts to Maryland is a long way to travel on only $50. How will they make it, will grandma be able to keep them and what kind of life can they expect?

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A Summer's Odyssey

By Jennifer Sue

Now available on Kindle

Time on My Hands Chapter 61 - 411-413 CE: Expanding in Mesoamerica


Time on My Hands
Chapter 61: 411-413 CE: Expanding in Mesoamerica


Raben made several decisions concerning the future of the Clan Corvo. The massive continual influx of people into Senegal from neighboring areas was too great for a smooth assimilation. For the last 18 years an average of 120,000 neighboring people per year were joining the Clan Corvo from adjoining tribal areas due to the ever escalating tribal warfare in search of slaves. The Clan Corvo represented peace, stability, and plentiful food. The Raven Raiders fielded 25 divisions who patrolled the ever expanding Senegal borders. Any armed incursions were met with overwhelming force and the utter destruction of the antagonists with most going into the Clan’s 3 year slavery. As tribes joined, they brought their land with them into the Clan Corvo, thus expanding the Senegal borders. With security and plentiful food, by 400 CE the birthrate soared to 3% while the infrastructure struggled to keep pace. By 411, the population in the African colony had soared to 5,095,711 people meaning the 3% population growth equaled 139,403 people. Raben decided that for the next 5 years to relocate 140,000 people into Barmaz while Barmaz raised their emigration to 63,000 people.

Time on My Hands Chapter 60 - 408-411 CE: Cancun Colony


Time on My Hands
Chapter 60: 408-411 CE: Cancun Colony

“DO YOU FORGET I AM THE DEMON SLAYER?” Raben replied with disdain. “I will not be threatened by scum like you! I will return to Cancun to gather my warriors. We will return tomorrow. You and Red Jaguar have the night to prepare for your deaths!” With that Raben turned and walked away.

Time on My Hands Chapter 59 - 407-408 CE: Burned at the Stake


Time on My Hands: Chapter 59: 407-408 CE: Burned at the Stake


By 407 the explorers of the African Coast had circumnavigated the continent, the Arabian Peninsula, and reached India. Westward exploration and colonists were moving into the New World. They did this by reallocating those being sent to Senegal, which had reached 3.8 million people. Racial bigotry in Senegal was greatly reduced as the younger populations became increasingly racially blended. The Clan Corvo had explored the Gulf of Mexico and the Caribbean establishing bases.

Time on My Hands Chapter 58 - 401-407 CE: Troubles with Goths


Time on My Hands
Chapter 58: 401-407 CE: Troubles with Goths

In the latter months of 401, General Stilicho had just reached Raetia to repulse invading Alemanni, when the Visigoths led by Alaric, suddenly marched west from Illyricum into Italy with a large army accompanied by their women and children. Alaric’s original intention was to petition to settle his people closer to Rome since he had a fascination for the 'golden age' of Rome. The governmental officials bluntly spurned his effort so the offended Visigoths were soon spreading desolation through North Italy and striking terror into the citizens of Rome. Italy itself contained no forces with which to resist the Goths. The Imperial court at Milan was immediately threatened by the invasion, but Stilicho, thinking that the emperor's flight would demoralize his subjects, persuaded Honorius to stay put while he gathered troops from along the Rhine and crossed back across the Alps. The Alemanni, who had been invading Raetia, were persuaded to stop raiding and instead be hired as mercenaries by Stilicho. The Alemanni joined the Gaulic legions, whom they had been fighting, in Stilicho's effort to save the emperor.

Time on My Hands Chapter 57 - 398-401 CE: Mayan Contact

Time on my Hands
Chapter 57: 398-401 CE: Mayan Contact

Red Jaguar and his retinue were surprised by the confident demeanor of the young boy and how fluently he spoke their language. They were also awed by his reddish hair and piercing green eyes.

“Kneel when you greet the King, impudent one,” a man snarled as he lowered his spear and stepped toward Raben.

Time on My Hands Chapter 56 - 397-398 CE: Exploring the New World


Time on My Hands
Chapter 56: 397-398 CE: Exploring the New World

Raben was delighted to learn of the success of the two western exploratory voyages. Raven Mail dispatched to Bazram told Ollie to line up 2 battalions of Pathfinders with at least 50 Sami in each to head out in the spring of 398 to prepare the Faroe Islands and Iceland for colonization. Two 4 ship exploratory fleets were ordered to continue west since the southern western explorers had found a new continent. Each exploratory min-fleet would consist a 360 ton caravel, a 180 ton caravel, a 100 ton caravel and a 24 ton clinker. An additional 1492 colonists would be included in the 398 colonist transfer to Bazram to make up for the 1492 Pathfinders being dispatched. Raben also ordered 4 battalions of Pathfinders west to establish bases and prepare for colonists on the islands of Bermuda, Hatteras, Great Abaco and Grand Bahama. The 6 battalions of Pathfinders sent to the 6 to establish the new island bases meant 4476 people had to be diverted from settling in Senegal. Each Pathfinder battalion included 2 - 100 ton caravels and 5 - 24 ton clinkers to transport between islands and around the coasts as well as to fish to supply the unit with food. Finding nearby fishing areas was part of their tasks.

Time on My Hands Chapter 55 - 393-397 CE: Svenn Smiles His Last

Time on My Hands
Chapter 55: 393-397 CE: Svenn Smiles His Last

The only annoying issue with the Senegal African Colony was with the Berber traders crossing the Sahara. Camels arrived in Berber North Africa around 300. It took several years for the Berbers to adapt in learning how to control and breed and the oft stubborn large beasts of burden. Once they did, they quickly mastered the arduous trek through the barren Sahara Desert. Trade started with the sub-Saharan African natives. They quickly learned the sub-Sahara was eager for salt and soon were trading salt for it’s weight of gold. The salt the Clan Corvo traded for slaves virtually eliminated the Berber salt trade. Needless to say the Berbers were upset to lose the source of easy gold. In addition, it quickly became evident that anything they transported across the Sahara by camel caravan could be provided cheaper by the Clan Corvo. The incipient cross desert camel caravan trade was abruptly short circuited.

Just posted the last part of Alone Togther

Just posted the last part. I hope everyone took the time to view the inserted videos. They truly were my inspiration for the story. They are very moving, the Sound of Silence pulled my heart as did We're not going to take it. Both are emotional and from the heart.

Alone Together; A Tuneful Tale Chapter 4: We’re Not Gonna Take It

Alone Together, A Tuneful Tale Chapter 4
We’re Not Gonna Take It

Rick spoke in a clear slightly voice as he launched into telling them how and why he’d flunked second and third grades. How his failed jock father tried to use him as a surrogate but was too ignorant to realize all he’d succeeded in doing was to age Rick out of sports eligibility for his junior and senior years short circuiting any hopes for college. The he told of the drunken beatings and horrific verbal abuse from his dad while admitting he’d become a bully in elementary school.

Alone Together; A Tuneful Tale Chapter 3: The Sound of Silence


Alone Together; a Tuneful tale.

Chapter 3: The Sound of Silence

The summer had been horrible for Rick. He was even more depressed and frustrated than ever. His mother was a nurse, and earned decent money but his father’s falling off the wagon had put a massive strain on the mother-son relationship. Karen was totally pissed off at Frank and that disgust overflowed to Rick. She shut down every and any habits and actions that would be considered masculine. When she discovered evidence of his male puberty maturation she went nuts. The next day, a month before the end of the school year, she gave him an injection, followed by another every week.

Time on My Hands Chapter 54 - 387-393 CE: Canals & Growth


Time on My Hands

Chapter 54: 387-393 CE: Canals & Growth

Raben stayed another year making sure things were running smoothly. As he had expected, once the conquered locals accepted and settled into their status as slaves they saw the advantages of the new way of life. The fact the colonists openly accepted them was almost beyond their comprehension. The began to look forward to earning their freedom.

Alone Together; A Tuneful Tale Chapter 2: Inside the Fire


Alone Together: A Tuneful Tale Chapter 2: Inside the Fire

In the fall Earl started preschool. The hoped for socialization with age-mates failed to materialize. He steadfastly refused to play with the girls or do anything that might earn him the much dreaded label of ‘sissy’. At the same time he didn’t enjoy typical boy activities and play. While he half-heartedly played with the boys, he did so angrily which usually degenerated into violence. The violence discouraged the boys from wanting to play with him and Earl wound up in time outs. As had become his normal, he never smiled or laughed and it seemed as if his face was frozen in a demi-frown. He would answer questions and even asked questions, but for the most part he was intensely quiet. By the end of the second week, he’d earned the enmity of the other boys and the frustrations of the teachers and aides. They did discover that he seemed happiest, at least relatively compared to his normal anger, if he was allowed to be alone. At least while alone he stayed out of trouble. With no one willing to play with him, when they went outside for free time play, Earl simply ran around the playground. As the weeks passed, he incorporated jumping and tumbling over the outdoor toys developing a style of kiddie-parkour. The teachers were concerned as he leapt and tumbled about the playground but he never cried or complained when he landed hard. They were more concerned some of the other boys would try to copy him but Earl’s dour demeanor kept others from following his lead.

Alone Together; A Tuneful Tale Chapter 1: I’m A Girl!

Alone Together; a Tuneful tale.

By Jennifer Sue

Chapter 1: I’m A Girl!


Reader Retention Contest


By the age of two Earl had painfully learned not to tell anyone he was a girl. They all insisted he was a boy like his dumb brothers. Even paying dolls with his girl cousins wrong. He simply didn’t understand why they could play with dolls and he couldn’t. But he did learn not to bring the subject up. He hated playing with his brothers and boy cousins but he was not given a choice. The really sad thing is with each chastisement, the happy, smiling and often laughing toddler steadily morphed into a repressed, quiet and solemn little boy.

Helping BC & writing milestone for me....

Author: 

Just posted the Chapter 53 of Time on My Hands, this is the 1 year anniversary of it's start. I hope you've been enjoying it.

Second item is I started a part time job driving school buses this week. It's been rough getting up early for the morning run after 2 1/2 years of retirement & sleeping in.

As I've promised to Erin, I'm going to double my Patron donation using part of the pay. I'm doing my best to support BC and urge others to do the same.

Time on My Hands Chapter 53 - 386-387 CE: Dakar Massacre


Time on My Hands

Chapter 53: 386-387 CE: Dakar Massacre

"We're facing religious fanatics," Raben explained as he addressed his massed forces upon his return. "They live by a strict caste system that binds their society like iron. They are utterly locked into their caste with no hope of escaping the limitations of their caste. It is so ingrained into their culture the idea of breaking the caste system is abhorrent. I spoke to slaves, offering them freedom, but every one refused. Several called out an alarm and I was chased. The leadership has even armed and are training the slaves to fight by their side. Their way of life is diametrically opposed to the culture of the Clan Corvo. We are in for one hell of a fight."

Time on My Hands Chapter 52 - 386 CE: Landing at Dakar

Time on My Hands

Chapter 52: 386 CE: Landing at Dakar

As soon as he felt the sand, Raben stood and walked ashore. It was quite evident he was unarmed and unafraid. The men, armed with spears and clubs, formed a protective line on the shore as the women and children stayed well behind them. When he stepped from the water the leader of the group stepped forward with his spear pointed in the general direction of Raben and spoke. With his Curse imbued ability to understand languages and feel emotions Raben smiled.

The leader asked. “Who are you? Are you fleeing them? What do you want? What do they want?”

Time on My Hands Chapter 51 - 385-386 CE: Expanding Colonization

Time on My Hands
Chapter 51: 385-386 CE: Expanding Colonization

“We need to find the last set of islands for colonization,” Raben declared. “They are located further south than the Canaries. However, we’ve searched nearly 600 miles south and west and found nothing. The ancient Phoenician writings have yet to be wrong so the islands must be further south. We have explored the African Atlantic coast from Gibraltar south for 1950 miles to a narrow peninsula that is the western most part of Africa. We followed the coast further south as it curved east for 1050 miles at which point the coast began heading northeast. We need to establish a base, on the African coast and I think the best place is centered on that Peninsula. The area is dry but several rivers are present as well as some native peoples. I want a take a division of Pathfinders and 3 divisions of Raven Raiders to establish the base. That means we need to transport over 27,000 people, animals and supplies in one fleet. Depending upon what we find I may want to establish a colony there. Doing so will depend upon defensibility.”

Time on My Hands Chapter 50 - 378-385 CE: Another Grand Tour

Time on My Hands
Chapter 50: 378-385 CE: Another Grand Tour

Still unsure about the offer, “Is your clan so safe and strong it can absorb so many people?”

“Yes,” Fiach answered. “As I said, we are from the Roman province of Barmaz. Until recently the province was known as Alpes Graiae Et Poeninae. At the Battle of Argentoratum my brother led the Raven Riders to save the life of Emperor Julian and defeat the Alemanni. Emperor Julian offered us a reward of our choice if it was reasonable. Since everyone in our mountainous province is a member of the Clan Corvo, we requested the province be renamed to Barmaz, which was the location the clan began. Emperor Julian granted the name change of the province in 361. He was aware that the Clan already had complete control of the province politically, militarily, and religiously. The 4 divisions of Raven Raiders with me are part of our standing military of 44 full time divisions of mounted troops each with tigers, eagles, wolves and ravens. In addition at age thirteen every member of the Clan Corvo, male and female, joins our militia and are trained for combat to supplement the Raven Raiders. We have enclosed the borders of the province of Barmaz in walls fortifying every entrance and have made ourselves self sufficient.”

OOPS

Author: 

Made a mistake in my saga. Last week I forgot to mark the posted chapter in my master file as being posted. So I accidentally reposted it. I'd like to thank Beoca for PMing to let me know. It has been corrected about 2:15.

I've been working on an entry for the January Contest and wasn't paying attention to Time on My Hands. I'm currently working on Chapter 69. It's getting towards the end, honestly!

Time on My Hands Chapter 49 - 368-378 CE: The Rat Patrol

Time on My Hands

Chapter 49: 368-378 CE: The Rat Patrol

One thing Raben practiced and insisted upon was, to the best that circumstances allowed, to never order someone to do things. He’d ask them to do something, often asking them to please do what he requested. He also made a point of thanking then for doing what he asked. In point of fact he made it a point to thank people for doing their jobs, publicly praising their actions. When it became necessary to reprimand someone, it was normally done gently and in private, with encouragement to do better. Only when a point needed to be driven home was a transgressor publicly disciplined. Treating people with kindness and respect cemented the Clan Corvo’s cohesiveness.

Time on My Hands Chapter 48 - 365-368 CE: Earthquake Orphans and Widows

Time On My Hands

Chapter 48: 365-368 CE: Earthquake Orphans and Widows

A massive earthquake {estimated 8+} occurred at about sunrise with an epicenter near Crete. The earthquake caused an uplift of 30 feet on the southwest corner of the island tapering to no uplift 30 miles east. Nearly every town on the island was destroyed. What had been the coast was now well above the water line. Tremors of the earthquake were felt in North Africa, Egypt, Anatolia, through out Greece and the Aegean Islands and even Italy. It caused widespread destruction in central and southern Greece. Worse was the resultant tsunami that struck Libya, Egypt, Cyprus, Sicily, and Italy.

Time on My Hands Chapter 47 - 364-365 CE: Bazram Absorbs Her Neighbors

Time On My Hands

Chapter 47: 364-365 CE: Bazram Absorbs Her Neighbors

Fiach again moved about so all could see the entrance and exit wounds heal while they watched.

“I’m going to be totally honest with you,” Fiach declared after rolling her shirt back down after the wounds disappeared. “The Clan Corvo is expanding and we are taking over neighboring farmsteads. We will not take farmsteads by force unless they start the violence. We will loan money to farmsteads at fair terms and rates as a few of you are already aware. If the loans default, we assume ownership of the farmstead, buying it at a fair price paying the owner the difference between the loan and the value of the farmstead. If they are interested, we work out terms for the ex-owner to continue as a tenant farmer.”

Time on My Hands Chapter 46 - 362-364 CE: Securing Sea Routes

Time on My Hands

Chapter 46: 362-364 CE: Securing Sea Routes

At 358 miles from Zarbam, the Island of Ibiza {GM 38.983162, 1.414738} was 64 miles east of the Cape de la Nau, Spain. The island was already populated when Phoenicians founded a port in 654 BCE. Ibiza then came under the control of Carthage. After Rome defeated Carthage, Ibiza negotiated a favorable treaty sparing further destruction. It's Carthaginian-Punic institutions and traditions continued well into the Empire days. The rocky island is 11.5 miles wide by 24.5 miles long oriented southwest to northeast making 221 square miles with a hot-summer Mediterranean climate bordering on a hot semi-arid climate. The island had some terracing for olive trees on the hilly interior with farm fields in the lower coastal areas with sheep and goats supplemented with fishing supporting a population of 5000. There was a well protected natural harbors also called Ibiza. Raben led a massive influx of Clan Corvo people, talking to the locals and buying land as ship after ship put into the port unloading the Clan Corvo immigrants.

Time on My Hands Chapter 45 - 361-362 CE: The End of Alpes Graiae Et Poeninae

Time on My Hands

Chapter 45: 361-362 CE: The End of Alpes Graiae Et Poeninae

"Not only do I learn human languages, I can speak with all animals," Raben explained. "I use ravens as my eyes, I can see what they see, I can hear what they hear. They scout for us. In return we see they are fed and sheltered and we attend to any wounds they might suffer."

Needless to say the natives were quite unnerved by what Raben told them but the ravens did seem to be talking to him. Raben stayed ashore that night. The next morning all but 1 ship set out to scout the other islands. The natives were amazed as Raben answered their every question and they answered most of his. Each day more natives arrived until by the end of the third day they had a representative from every village present.

Time on My Hands Chapter 44 - 356-361 CE: The Raven Raiders Fight

Time on My Hands

Chapter 44: 356-361 CE: The Raven Raiders Fight

For the 356 campaigning season, Julian linked up with the main body of the Gaul militia which involved a long march through country swarming with Alemanni raiding bands. Julian surprised and drove off a large Alemanni force that had surrounded Augustodunum {PD Autun} and defeated a raiding band in the wilderness. At Reims, Julian showed his boldness by deciding to deal with the Alemanni problem at the source by marching straight to Alsace and restoring Roman control of the Rhine. On the way his troops were ambushed. Nearly a quarter of his forces were destroyed by a large band of Alemanni but neither side emerged victorious. At Brotomagus {PD Brumath} in Alsace, Julian's forces routed another Alemanni band. After assessing the situation in Alsace, Julian decided that his force was insufficient to prevail over the Alemanni alone. Instead, he set out to recover Colonia Agrippina, leading his army via Augusta Trevorum to Roman-held Koblenz and then down the Rhine.

Time on My Hands Chapter 43 - 353-356 CE: A Time to Watch, A Time to Fight

Time on My Hands

Chapter 43: 353-356 CE: A Time to Watch, A Time to Fight

Then just as quietly as he’d arrived, Raben would slip off into the forests without a trace. After two weeks Raben had found and visited every sizeable Alemanni camp. The first camps he’d visited sent out riders to warn the other camps the Demon Slayer was about but even with additional guards and heightened awareness none spotted Raben, the tigers or the wolves. The old tale of the Demon Slayer told he’d silently killed the slaver guards and then silently slit the throats of nearly a hundred slavers. They now understood that what most had considered a fanciful tale could very well be true.

Time on My Hands Chapter 42 - 352-353 CE: Frolicking on the Rhine

Time on My Hands

Chapter 42: 352-353 CE: Frolicking on the Rhine

The Alemanni leadership were waiting in the ruins of the city of Argentorate {PD Strasbourg}. Delegates were sent out to the caravan asking for a parley. Raben agreed telling his people to set up camp for the night. Then he, 3 tigers and 30 wolves headed into the invader’s parley camp as 3 eagles and over 300 ravens circled overhead. That Raben went to the parley without any men told the Alemanni he had absolutely no fear of them.

For the first few moments the quite imposing Chnodamar tried to stare down the physically unimposing Raben. Accustomed to being dominant, the fact Raben met him stare to stare started to get under his skin. Then without breaking eye contact, Raben began to smirk. Suddenly the tigers let out simultaneous almost deafening deep throated roars that quite literally rattled the unprepared listeners bones while making their chests quiver. Much to his disgust, Chnodamar found himself blinking and taking a step back.

Time on My Hands Chapter 41 - 347-352 CE: Colonizing the Azores

Time on My Hands

Chapter 41: 347-352 CE: Colonizing the Azores

Since Christianity had taken hold of the Clan Ravn the burial practices changed. The circular burial mound of Olvris was huge, 180 feet in diameter and 19 feet high, had been fine for the honoring the Norse gods, but was considered a bit too ostentatious for Christianity. Svenn decided the mound could become a dynastic memorial for those who led Bazram.

Family members had been buried around the burial mound and that would continue, however, the successors of Olvris would be buried atop the mound. As the first successor, Bjorn would be buried on the top with a simple gravestone. When Svenn’s time came, he would be buried beside his grandfather, with future successors following suit as the grave sites wound around and down the hill. There would be more than enough room to bury centuries of successors. Svenn would also erected a huge memorial stone listing the names and lineage of those buried in and on top of the burial mound along with the dates of the birth, rule, and death. Additions would be made as needed.

Time on My Hands Chapter 40 - 343-347 CE: A Revised Grand Tour

Time on My Hands
Chapter 40: 343-347 CE: A Revised Grand Tour

At Regensburg the Regen River joins the Danube. The confluence of the two rivers occurs in a relatively flat alluvial valley which led to the several large islands in the rivers. The crossing of the Regen was about 100 feet wide. Then it was 80 feet to an island in the Danube, 70 feet to the next island, 80 feet to the third island, then 100 feet to the opposite side of the Danube. From there they headed south to Lake Constance, only this time they went around the east side.

The aurochs and tarpans had been wary of being so close to humans throughout the trip, but true to Raben’s promises, they had been safe and well fed. The longer they traveled with the humans, the more they realized these humans were different from others. While the humans could be deadly, they respected the animals. As the animals entered into the upper Rhone river valley they saw the wall being built across the entrance as well as the defensive walls on the mountains. They saw hundreds of carefree domesticated animals grazing in the fields.

Time on My Hands Chapter 39 - 343 CE: We Will, We Will Aurochs You!

Time on My Hands

Chapter 39: 343 CE: We Will, We Will Aurochs You!

Since the head of harbor security had witnessed the deceased man’s attack on the harbor master he ruled Fiach’s actions justifiable homicide, thus there would be no criminal charges.

“Thanks for saving my life,” the harbor master shivered at his close brush with death. “Did you really try to buy this zoo?”

“Yes,” Fiach said. “But not at his price. I’ll pay for his funeral if I can have the animals.”

“That’s a fair price,” the harbor master eagerly accepted the offer.

Time on My Hands Chapter 38 - 334-343 CE: The Zoo

Time on My Hands
Chapter 38: 334-343 CE: The Zoo

They plans were adjusted so the 80 ships could sail in 10 ship fleets of colonists and supplies to leave at 1 week intervals. That would ease loading and unloading jams at both ends of the voyage. Each 10 ship fleet could do 2 voyages a year. Leaving Zarbam in mid-April the first 10 ship fleet would load and unload in 6 days conducting a 7 week resupply voyage. One of the July voyages would include the 5 yearly Bazram ships. The spring fleets would take 2100 colonists, 50 each from Mazbar and Zamrab with the rest from Barmaz. The July fleet would take 2050 colonists, 50 from Bazram and the rest from Barmaz.

Petticoat Acres

Petticoat Acres
by Jennifer Sue

Benji was small and slender for his age. On top of that he was a late bloomer, looking more like a ten year old than his true age. As a result he was a frequent target for bullying in middle school. Now fourteen year old Benji Joe Carson forlornly sat in the seat of the World War Two vintage twin engine DC3 airplane. Three weeks after the assassination of Martin Luther King Jr, his parents had died in a car crash in Chicago. With no nearby relatives he’d been temporarily placed in an orphanage until they were able to reach his great uncle, Joe Carson. While he’d been bullied in school, the orphanage had been far worse. Fortunately Benji Joe was an ace student, so when he was pulled from his suburban school they gave him passing grades for the year. As a result the orphanage didn’t try to enroll him in their local school.

Now here it was June 1 and he was on the flagship aircraft of Trans Pixley Airlines heading toward their main hub, the Pixley International Airport. Having flown out of Chicago Midway Airport he was leaving the upper middle class Chicago suburbs that had been his lifelong home. He’d never heard of Pixley. It sounded like some place in the Neighborhood of Make-Believe on that new kiddie show, Mister Roger’s Neighborhood, that had debuted in February on the National Educational Television.

Time on My Hands Chapter 37 - 331-334 CE: Growing the Colony

Time on My Hands
Chapter 37: 331-334 CE: Growing the Colony

With his ability to communicate with animals Raben quickly understood the issue. Even when he told the seals they had to leave they resisted. They simply had no context to understand what the humans wanted. Even when Raben explained the humans would kill the seals if they didn’t leave, the large behemoths were not afraid of the puny humans. Raben sought out the alpha, a huge scarred bull seal. Despite his best efforts, the bull refused to yield the location and viciously attacked the noisy annoying little human.

I'm Still Standing

I’m Still Standing

by Jennifer Sue

Harry was a top notch auto mechanic in northern Lebanon County, Pennsylvania just outside the town of Fredericksburg. By twenty five he had started his own quite successful business, Blue Mountain Auto. Emma ran the office with the assistance of the daughter-in-laws while both sons and their daughter worked in the four bay shop with their dad. The son-in-law joined the business as a body man in a smaller two bay body shop annex. It truly was a family business. The business originally sat on a ten acre plot that was divided into two acre plots, one for the business and four for their homes. Needless to say, it was a solid, often profane, gearhead family.

The extended family was finishing their annual Thanksgiving feast, relaxing, as they enjoyed warm homemade pumpkin pie. Several of the men had to loosen their pants to handle their expanded girth. Everyone sat back smiling as the turkey induced lethargy spread.

As usual, Emma asked her grandchildren what they wanted for Christmas. The explanation was that Grandmothers had a special hotline to Santa. One by one she asked each excited kid as the adults chuckled at their excitement and anticipation. That was about to change.

Time on My Hands Chapter 36 - 330-343 CE: The Founding of Ramzab

Time on My Hands
Chapter 36: 330-343 CE: The Founding of Ramzab

Bjorn stood to speak. “We here at Olvishaugen have Raben Corvo and the clan he founded, Clan Corvo, to thank for our prosperity. We have grown greatly in population and land because of their assistance. My grandfather recognized our relationship with the Clan Corvo by declaring us the Clan Ravn. He was right but too stubborn to fully admit the truth. Yes we are the Clan Ravn, but more importantly, every one of us is also a member of the Clan Corvo. The reality and truth is that we are not two different Clans, but one single clan! Henceforth we shall be know as the Clan Corvo. Raben and Fiach Corvo are the Clan Corvo leaders and thus OUR leaders!

Those of the Clan Corvo cheered, obviously supporting the changes.

Time on My Hands Chapter 35 - 326-330 CE: Repositioning Clan Corvo

Time on My Hands
Chapter 35: 326-330 CE: Repositioning Clan Corvo

Raben wanted better for the Clan Corvo. To this end he decided to allow same sex couples to marry with the blessing of the Clan Corvo Church. Same sex couples could also start families using surrogates or adoption. Raben understood there could be a difference between a person’s physical sex and their gender. Intersex people like himself would have the right to choose their gender presentation or even to switch back and forth. The right to choose their gender presentation also applied to people who were mentally intersex {transsexual}. In addition, as he had done when inducting the captured Alemanni into the ranks of the Clan Corvo, polygamy was accepted in all it’s forms, polygyny {1 husband, multiple wives}, polyandry {1 wife, multiple husbands}, or a group marriage {multiple husbands and wives}.

Time on My Hands Chapter 34 - 312-326 CE: Establishing Another Legend

Time on My Hands
Chapter 34: 312-326 CE: Establishing Another Legend

“I have a suggestion for filling the vacant office,” Raben told Constantine. “I am the only senator with holdings in the province. The other senators who had estates here and to the west in Allobroge sold their estates to my grandfather when the Alemanni destroyed their estates 53 years ago. Barmaz escaped ransacking because we already had the defenses built plus my family is of Celtic and Germanic descent. The founder of the clan and my namesake, Raben, was the original Demon Slayer. My twin sister and I are both Demon Slayers. Because of that we were not attacked. The Clan Corvo is so large because my grandfather bought the 240,000 captured Alemanni who were sold into slavery. He brought them back home and married them into the Clan.”

“I have a relative who would be an ideal candidate for provincial governor and another who is head of the Clan Corvo Militia who would be an excellent duce,” Raben continued. “If I may be so bold, when I prove the metal of my Raven Raiders in the upcoming battles, I ask that the Clan Corvo lands in Allobroge be combined with those of Alpes Graiae Et Poeninae by imperial decree and that you appoint my candidates for Governor and Duce of the enlarged Alpes Graiae Et Poeninae, and make the positions hereditary to the Clan Corvo since we make up 99% of the population. The Clan Corvo has faithfully served the imperial cause since Emperor Severus, my ancestors and namesakes being the head physicians for the Caledonian Expedition.”

Time on My Hands Chapter 33 - 299-312 CE: The Raven Raiders

Time on My Hands
Chapter 33: 299-312 CE: The Raven Raiders

“Bjorn is right,” Raben agreed. “Reading and writing is a key to success if it is used by wise men. Outside those of us in Olvishaugen, I doubt if more than a handful of people within 600 miles can read and write. If you keep the ability to read and write a secret within your family, you can create a dynasty just as I have done.”

“That’s all well and good,” Olvir said. “However, it takes wealth to create a dynasty. While we are not poor we certainly are not wealthy nor do we have a greater source of wealth than our neighbors.”

Time on My Hands Chapter 32 - 298-299 CE: Clan Corvo Goes Norse

Time on My Hands
Chapter 32: 298-299 CE: Clan Corvo Goes Norse

Fiach learned about the Norse pantheon, a variation of the German pantheon but much harsher. She was most intrigued by Odin and his twin companions, the Ravens, Hugin and Munin. Odin was the ‘raven-god’ or ‘the priest of the raven sacrifice’, a poetic way of describing fallen warriors as “sacrifices” to the ravens and other carrion birds, with Odin as a decider of who lives and who dies in battle. In the same vein, ravens were called ‘the greedy hawks of Odin’. The spotting of ravens immediately following a sacrifice to Odin was taken as a sign that the god had accepted the offering. However ravens aren’t only birds of gore and carnage, they’re also exceptionally intellectual birds, and Odin was an exceptionally intellectual god. Hugin comes from the word hugr, thought. Munin comes from the word munr, which encompasses the concepts of thought, desire and emotion. They’re Odin’s intellectual/spiritual capabilities journeying outward in the form of fittingly intelligent and curious birds that resonate with Odin’s roles as battle god and death god. The sending forth of spiritual aspects of oneself to accomplish particular tasks, in the case of Hugin and Munin, the gathering of additional wisdom and knowledge to add to Odin’s already-prodigious store, was a common practice by Norse shamans and sorcerers.

Time on My Hands Chapter 31 - 297-298 CE: The Norse Connection

Time on My Hands
Chapter 31: 297-298 CE: The Norse Connection

By the end of May he was back in Barmaz. One of the priorities was to find a reliable source of iron, thus he decided to take another scouting trip along the east bank of the Rhine to the North Sea, similar to the one he took sixty years ago. Since all iron sources in Roman territory were locked down by existing organizations, a source that could be secured for the Clan Corvo outside Roman territory needed to be found. The difference from his last Rhine trip was he intended to travel as Fiach. Posing as an itinerant healer riding a horse along with a pack horse she set out. This would be her first trip north since Emperor Probus had abandoned the limes when he retracted the border to the Rhine.

Time on My Hands Chapter 30 - 285 CE: The Theological Connection

Time on My Hands
Chapter 30: 285 CE: The Theological Connection

Everyone was clearly shocked by that weird behavior wondering if perhaps Raben was crazy.

Then from the walls above them the a host of wolf howls answered. Raben howled once more. A dozen wolves loped from the low opening in the wall where the Mauvoisin, the stream coming from the side valley to join the Rhone at Agaunum. The galloping wolves headed for Raben.

People screamed and ran. The provincial troops fell back drawing their weapons. Maximian almost wet himself as his bodyguard nervously moved to surround him. Raben began yipping, the wolves replied as they trotted up to stand protectively on either side of Raben.

Time on My Hands Chapter 29 - 273-285 CE: The Thebian Legion

Time on My Hands
Chapter 29: 273-285 CE: The Thebian Legion

Just after dawn 500 Palmyrene cavalry formed in the square. They carried unlit torches and buckets of burning charcoal to ignite them. Firmus emerged with his entourage to address the troops. As he spoke, gesturing for emphasis he stopped abruptly. Everyone was stunned to see the feathered end of an arrow had appeared in his mouth. As his body crumbled and twisted they could see the point was protruding from the back of his neck. His second in command was quickly down with an arrow in his heart. The troops reacted with shouting while seeking the assailant. Those on the steps with the now dead Firmus ran in panic. Six more high ranking officers were dropped before they reached cover. By then dismounted troops were rushing into the temple.

Stay Cat Ion

Stay Cat ion

by Jennifer Sue

It was Friday, June 22 during the end of season JV baseball game to determine the county championship. The score was 2 to 3 in favor of the other team. There was a man on first with 2 outs at the bottom of the last inning. The pressure was on. Kyle stood at the plate staring down the pitcher. The pitcher was clearly sweating as he kept wiping his brow. The first pitch was a ball. Kyle had almost swung at it. The next ball was a strike, a real whiffer. Kyle began sweating. Soon the count was 3 and 2. Kyle then whacked 3 foul balls. Everyone held their breath as the next pitch came in. As the pitcher wound up, Kyle took a deep breath. As the ball flew to the plate Kyle decided it was a perfect pitch. With every bit of his strength, he swung for the sixth time this at bat, exhaling sharply as he did so. The CRACK echoed through the ball field. The ball sailed high for the center field fence. All eyes were glued onto the ball.

Time on My Hands Chapter 28 - 267-273 CE: Egypt is Crumbling


Time on My Hands
Chapter 28: 267-273 CE: Egypt is Crumbling

In February 267 Raben returned to Mazbar. Business for Corvus Construction was booming. It had attracted the best architects and engineers, work was done correctly, with good materials, on time and on cost. It had become the premier builder in the vicinity of Rome. Treatises were written on engineering and architecture with mathematical tables to figure out loads and spans for various materials. Formulas for different types of concrete were recorded. The books were copied and sold by Corvus Scriptorium.

Time on My Hands Chapter 27 - 259-267 CE: The Spry Centenarian

Time on My Hands
Chapter 27: 259-267 CE: The Spry Centenarian

The land around the south shore of Lac Leman had been settled by the Celtic Nantuatae tribe including up the upper Rhone river valley to the point it narrows just above Monthey. The rest of the upper Rhone valley had been settled by the Celtic Seduni tribe. The area south of Geneva at the western end of Lac Leman and east of the Rhone was settled by the Celtic Allobroges tribe. All three tribes had been conquered by the Romans during the times of Julius Ceasar and his successors. The tribes were not supplanted by the Romans, and after their initial conquest, stayed on the land in relative peace.

The massive influx of people was too much to absorb on the limited lands of the province Alpes Graiae Et Poeninae, more farmland was needed. With the purchase of the Roman Senatorial Estates, Raben now owned most of the land of the Seduni and the Nantuatae. To expand his land he set out exploring the land to the west of Barmaz and south of Lac Leman, what remained of the Nantuatae an that of the Allobroges. Many of the farms were subsistence level like he had bought in Barmaz. The better farmland was owned by absentee Senatorial landlords. Raben knew he could deal with the subsistence farms as he had done in Barmaz. The tougher deal would be to buy out the Roman Estates.

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