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Eckernförde, Kiel and more

Hello everyone, or whoever remembers me. I am back from a rather long hiatus. Sadly I haven’t found enough time to write over the last few months. I “suffered” from writers block or in general I wasn’t able to be creative. The past one and a half years were full of some personal/family issues and my job didn’t help either.

Now I am back and I hope to upload new blog posts regularly, plus I’ll start to write some query letters for my book again. I still need an agent for said book, which is called Grim. It seems like a never ending story to me to be honest.

And now, I’ll finally tell you, what this blog post will be mainly about.

 

This first new blog post will be about my hometown Eckernförde and the town where I work most of the time, which is called Kiel. I’ll also show you some of the lovely areas near Eckernförde. By the way I am pretty often in Hamburg and I love this city, but I’ll write about it in a later blog post.

Now back to Eckernförde and Kiel.

Both towns are located in the state Schleswig Holstein which is the most northern state of Germany. Please don’t worry. I won’t talk about the history of both towns. Especially for Eckernförde and Borby I wrote some historical papers, which you can purchase at the town museum in Eckernförde. In fact, I uploaded one part here on WordPress a couple of months ago. I mainly want to show you some impressions of both towns and tell you just a little bit about what you see in those pictures.

And now shall we begin our little tour.

 

Eckernförde

First of all, most of the following photos were taken during fall and all of them were shot in 2016. You will find a small explanatory text under every set of photos.

 

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Here you can see the beach. In fact Eckernförde has quite a few beaches. You can find one while leaving Eckernförde, when you drive to Kiel. There’s also the Eckernförder beach which comes before the one that I mentioned before. On the other side of the bay you can visit the Borby beach, which is a little smaller but I prefer this one to be honest, because it isn’t as crowded as the other two.

By the way, you can only see the Eckernförde beach in the photos. I also wanted to show you the Eckernförde harbour which was redesigned a few years ago. Now it looks much cleaner. I’d love to show you some old photos, but I couldn’t find them. There are also some impressions from the town centre, including some rather old buildings.

I might write a second article about Eckernförde, but so far this is all I can share with you.

 

Wittensee

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This beautiful lake can be found just a few minutes away from Eckernförde, when you drive by car. Here you can hike, bath, camp and have a nice barbecue especially in the summer. The two small villages near the western side of the lake are called Groß (big) Wittensee and Klein (small) Wittensee. I have not much else to say about it and hope that you like the photos.

 

Kiel

Kiel is the capital of Schleswig Holstein and here I also studied at the Christian-Albrechts-University of Kiel.

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The city was almost completely destroyed during World War 2 and because of that, you won’t find many old buildings. By the way, Eckernförde was a lot luckier and you can find some beautiful old buildings there. There are not nearly as many old buildings in Eckernförde as in Lübeck but you will find some nice ones there too. Some of the photos here show the bay area of Kiel, the old town hall near a small lake and a small portion of the inner-city.

 

That’s it for now. I hope that you like this short blog post and I really hope to be able to upload new blog posts regularly, from now on.

I wish you all a great and beautiful day.

 

All photos were taken by Sidney Oliver Brehm in 2016 (the author of this blog post) with an old Sony M4 Aqua smartphone.

 

 

 

 

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Insomnia (Short Story, 1285 words)

It’s been a while, but here’s my newest “horror” short-story. I wrote it within two hours and I used spell checker for a quick grammar correction (I hope that it isn’t too bad) 😉

Insomnia

Dog-tired, I scuff through the floor of my apartment. The wooden planks beneath my feet are warm, except for one spot, which is always cold. Every day I wondered why it is so, but… my stupid janitor said that it was nothing and that I shouldn’t care about it and that I shouldn’t ask him again. Slowly I march into my nice, little kitchen, touch the glass-table and let my hand hover over a bowl which is filled with apples, “Mmh apples.” But I’m not going to eat those now. The wooden floor beneath my feet feels great. It was a good choice to buy this apartment. Gently, I grab the handle of the nearby refrigerator and open the door. Cold air flows out of it, covering my chest and my arm as I let my hand slip inside of it, “Yummy.” I hum. Rather quickly I grab a plate, filled with mashed potatoes, gravy and meatballs.
“Thanks mom.” I grin, close the refrigerator and put my meal into the microwave and activate the timer. It feels like activating a time-bomb, ready to give me the explosive tastiness of a home cooked meal, “Hehe.” I smile and wait for my dinner that I got from my recent visit at home.
The smell is great and my mouth is already watering. Better than ramen noodles.
Beep Beep Beep! The microwave has finished the reheating process and I wonder if the plate will be hot and my dinner will be freezing cold. Speaking… I mean thinking of frozen… why is the floor cold here too? It was warm a moment before.
“Hmm.” Maybe the cold air from the refrigerator crawled down and now floats over the floor? Anyway, a fine meal awaits me. I open the glass-door, carefully grab the plate and check the heat of my food with my other hand. It is surprisingly warm and not only the plate. I close the microwave, grab a fork, a knife and go to the living room. Finally, I can sit down on my large couch, place my plate which is full of tasty food on the coffee table and switch on the television via the remote control.
Well, now I sit here, enjoying my food, watching a show and wonder what else I need in my life. I have a great job, a nice apartment, a lovely family and… yes, “A girlfriend would be great.” I sigh.
“Anyway.” I grunt and swallow the last, juicy meatball and continue to watch some TV. Man, I am really tired after this rich meal. I yawn and notice that the floor beneath my feet gets colder and colder, “Weird.” I yawn. Maybe it’s the ventilation shafts that run through the floors?
Stretching my back, I stand up, turn off the TV and wonder if I should play a game on my console?
“Nah.” I yawn again and walk over, to the bathroom. With a small motion of my pointer I switch on the lights in the sterile looking room and approach the sink. A short look in the mirror above the sink shows my face, “Damn, I’m one good-looking dude.” I joke to myself. Something immediately catches my interest. It is a long, blonde hair, deep down in the sink. Shrugging with my shoulders, I flush it down the drain, but wonder, where it came from. Most certainly it is none of mine, because I have short, brown hairs. Maybe it stuck with me after work? Do we have a woman with long, blonde hairs in the office? No, I’m too tired to investigate this any further. Quickly I brush my teeth, undress myself, except for my boxer shorts and T-shirt. I waddle to my nearby bedroom and swiftly jump on it. The bouncy material cushions my fall and I immediately pull the blanket up to my shoulders.
It feels cozy, like always. Now I lie here, in my big, comfortable bed and wonder how it would be, if I had a girlfriend. Damn, I need someone to talk to and cuddle with. Nice thoughts, and I get tired by the minute, but I can’t sleep. I try to, but somehow it is not possible.
“Oh man.” I sigh and pull the blanket up a little more.
“Why is it getting colder?” I wonder and feel kind of uncomfortable as a cold breath of wind sneaks under my blanket and touches my hip.
“Stupid janitor… I… I will tell him tomorrow, to fix the damn air conditioner.” This damn air conditioning system is the only grief that I have about this otherwise amazing apartment.
Maybe a little thinking will distract me from the sometimes cold breaths of air that now even touch my neck.
And again, another breath touches my neck and after a short break, another one, “It feels like…” I turn around and see nothing. But for a moment it seems like the blinds in front of the windows have moved.
“Nah, stupid mind, go to rest. You’re a grown up dude. Monsters and ghosts don’t exist, silly.” I whisper to myself and turn around, only to feel the cold air repeatedly touch my neck. Slowly I begin to accept this rhythmic flow of air and I get more and more tired, but another cold blow enters my blanket.
Dammit! That’s so… my thoughts stop immediately as I feel gentle, slender but also cold fingers touch on my arm. I can’t move, I… I feel paralyzed. Slowly I feel the weight of a person on my whole arm, my eyes widen and I can’t close them. The weight shifts over and now rests on my chest. I don’t see anything. No shadow, no physical shape, but I feel… someone breathing. Cold air tickles my face and I try to move my eyes to the left before thin forearms appear in my fixed sight. Long, pale and bony fingers move without a sound, touching the blanket to my right. A head covered in long, blonde hairs comes into my view. Paralyzed, I can only watch as the hairs move to the sides, revealing a pale, face with no eyes, no nose, but a gaping mouth that turns into a grin reveals hundreds of flat but thin teeth. Behind those teeth lies a pitch-black and endless seeming throat.
The jaw of the creature, with no real facial features, opens wider as a long, worm-like tongue emits from the blackness of its throat.
Slowly, this pale creature creeps nearer to my face, dripping saliva on my chin and starts to talk to me, “You wanted a girlfriend? Here I am. You’re mine now!” Are the last words I hear, before the creature leaps forward and buries its teeth in my face.

I don’t know for how long I’ve been asleep, but now that I’m awake, I wonder where I am. It is dark, where I am. It is cold and clammy. I wander around, but I can’t seem to remember this place. I try to scream, but no word will come out of my mouth.
From time to time I hear steps from above the ceiling but only muffled voices. Am I dreaming? Am I dead? Again, I can hear steps and voices from above.
“Oh honey, it is perfect, let’s buy this apartment.” I hear a female voice.
“Sure sweetie, let’s buy it. But, why did the last owner left this place?” A male voice asks.
“If I remember correctly, he simply vanished a few months ago. No one knows what happened to him. I really wouldn’t worry about it.” The female voice answers and the blood in my veins freezes as I feel cold air touching my neck…

Thanks for reading \m/^^\m/

Concept Art (a few samples)

Hello. Well, it’s been a while, since I last uploaded a blog entry (sorry). This time, I want to show you (yes you two), some pieces of the concept art that I created a while ago. It is only a very small portion (maybe 1 %) of all the concept art that I have created over… well, maybe twelve years (?). 

They are basically alpha versions, created within 2-5 minutes. The concept art that was created for my books (mainly for Moribund Worlds (working title) and Grim) won’t be shown here.The designs which you’ll see here are all in a very early stage but I hope that you’ll enjoy them at least a tiny bit 😉 . I’m not a professional concept artist (duh), but I love painting, drawing and creating stuff. So, if you would like to use some of my designs etc. please contact me via Twitter (no direct message please) or E-Mail. All links are at the bottom of this post. Here’s an example, how the alpha version looks like (felt pen on paper) and for comparison a finished concept art piece (created with acrylic paint on cardboard). I also use graphic-tablets and digital painting programs sometimes.

Alpha version

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Finished version

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And now some other alpha versions 😉 Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image Image

 

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I hope that you liked these early designs and that you’ll have a great day.

Thanks for watching \m/^^\m/

 

Links:

https://twitter.com/SidneyBrehm

E-Mail: sobrehm@googlemail.com

More of my creations can be found here (and on Twitter)….

http://samael-sh0-to-5.deviantart.com/

Accompanying music, for your writing and painting sessions “ Epic Goosebumps Edition”

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As always, this is all in my opinion. You might not get goose bumps (if that’s the case, you might be an alien though O.o).

Btw. it’s been a while since my last post (I’ve been extremely busy and I still am).

And now, please enjoy the music that I found in the endless and sometimes creepy realms of youtube. It was dark in there, but luckily my trusty, old pumpkin was by my side… even though his jokes were rather corny :/ 

 

Princess Mononoke – Legend of Ashitaka Soundtrack [HQ]

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8XOV2L-eM38

 

Dark Souls 2 Trailer Theme Extended

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5Exep5sjl0Q

 

Mass Effect – We Simply… Are

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJWTx1v1adI

 

John Dreamer – Mass Effect 3 EPIC MUSIC “End of my Journey”

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JN25hbDMWUA

 

Reignite – Mass Effect/Shepard Tribute Song by Malukah

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=re32xnyYP3A

 

Transformers – Arrival To Earth (Unreleased Original Version)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Kk5-G5BLxsQ

 

Pacific Rim Main Theme – Ramin Djawadi

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sH_6iFYiryY

 

Killzone 3 Official Soundtrack Main Menu Theme: And Ever We Fight On (Extended)

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PHYDP44g9-4&list=PLEv6ZOEXiJYniNTZrn8nWmiOWAwK9cnE1&index=44

 

Future World Music – Passion of Victory

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vDQbbjni_B0&list=PLEv6ZOEXiJYniNTZrn8nWmiOWAwK9cnE1

 

Mass Effect – We Simply… Are

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WJWTx1v1adI

 

And the painting? Glad that you ask (you two). I made it myself (you can look at my deviantart.com account if you like, for more paintings and concept art =  http://samael-sh0-to-5.deviantart.com/  ).

Moribund Worlds: Serendipity – “Short Snippet” from my sci fi book.

Hello, it’s been a while, but here is a new post for you all. It is not from Grim (the book which is pretty much finished now… Ok, I need to edit it a tiny… I mean a little more -.-).

The little snippet, which you’re going to read (maybe), is from Moribund Worlds: Serendipity (Duh XD). It is the first book of my planned epic, horror, action, sci-fi saga (4-8 books are planned). Book one (Serendipity) is pretty far in its development-cycle (not nearly as far as Grim, but I’m pleased with the progress). Moribund Worlds will be a hybrid with elements from many sci-fi and horror movies/games that influenced me (the first few chapters are a homage to one of my favourite sci fi horror movies of all time). Slower parts, will mix with epic battles, strong horror and gore elements and a hopefully believeable sci-fi universe (if that is possible)

This snippet here, has been edited a little already and is not extremely raw, but still not finished (keep that in mind pleeaase). It is from a pretty calm section of the book and I just wanted to upload it before I’ll introduce the main characters. Serendipity starts like a classic sci-fi horror movie/book, but later it…. well, I’ll tell you more about what you can find in the final product soonish (always without spoilers!!!). Maybe I’ll upload some other snippets of the book here in the near future. But the next snippets you’ll see on my blog, will be from Darkest Ages (fantasy book) and from Grim (see the “Meet Nathan” blog post, to read a first snippet from it).

Btw, the cover design is just a placeholder!

And now I wish you… something :p Have fun reading chapter one and a part of chapter 2 from Moribund Worlds: Serendipity (hopefully).

 

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 Chapter 1 Playtime

 

Year 2125 June 5th Moon Serendipity 15 light-years away from earth in the Gliese 876 star-system

 

   “Haha, bet you won’t catch me you snail!” Bobby teases his brother and runs out of the small improvised looking metal building.

   “I always catch you, you… you dummy!” Tim shouts and follows his brother outside.

The bright light flashes into his eyes, blinding him for a second. His brother is nowhere in sight, but he can see the footprints he left in the freshly fallen snow on this ice encrusted moon.

   “Bobby, Tim, be careful when you play outside!” A female voice shouts after them.

   “Yeah, sure mom, we’ll be back soon!” Tim answers and starts following the footprints his brother left for him. It will take him a while, like every time, but finally he’ll catch him and then he’ll soap his brothers’ face with some snow and ice. Well, at least that’s his plan. Tim takes a last look back at his parents’ house. It’s made of steel and reflecting, golden foil, just like all the other nearly eighty houses here around.

The small settlement has been incorporated eighteen years ago as one of the first colonies on an exosolar world.

Why his parents had chosen this damn cold rock, which circles an enormous gas-giant, will always be a miracle for him. Here are only a handful of kids and most of them aren’t old enough to play with him and his brother. Sometimes he wishes to live on earth, even though it’s hopelessly overcrowded and polluted. Well, he has no choice. His parents are both exo-biologists and their job is to search for life on other planets. Tim will never forget when the first bacteria and smaller worms were found and what for a huge deal everyone made out of this.

   “Pfft, boring stuff.” He huffs while running after his brother, but how the hell could he have escaped so fast?

   “Bobby, this gets boring!” He shouts while he slowly loses sight of the colony. The sun is still shining strong and no cloud is to be seen. Just the glistening stars and an endless icy desert with ragged mountains are surrounding him.

   “Bobby, come on, this is so unfair! I’ll tell mom and dad that you went so far away from our home!” Tim shouts, but still no answer from Bobby. Slowly a bad feeling captures Tim’s stomach and he runs as fast as he can. If there would be bigger alien life-forms, his parents or any other of the colonists might have found them already, but what if not? He searches every hole, every smaller cave he encounter on his way. His parents would kill him if he loses his brother during a stupid catch me if you can game.

 

The orange, red and yellow colored gas-giant slowly moves on the firmament while Tim still can’t seem to keep up with his brother. But what is that?

   “Oh damn, no.” Tim never has been that far away from the colony and what he sees, seems fairly similar to some vistas on earth he had seen on TV.

   “Wow.” He grunts gasping for fresh, icy cold air. He stands on higher ground, near a huge plain field. It just looks like a damn giant, frozen lake. Perfect for ice-skating he thinks but he hesitates tipping it with his foot. Maybe it’s liquidly under the surface and he’ll drown, and nobody would find him in time.

   “Nah, I’m not going on that, but it looks beautiful.” He whispers and for a moment he forgets about his brother whose footprints are following a corner around a small ragged iced rock.

   “Do mom and dad know about this place? Why haven’t they showed us this?” Tim whispers and rubs his hands to warm them a bit. He’s so flashed with this vista, that he doesn’t hear the creeping shadow behind him, which comes nearer and nearer. It’s so near now, that he normally should feel the frozen breath that fills the air.

   “Gotcha!” A voice shouts and someone pokes Tim so hard that he looses his grip.

Shocked, Tim turns around while falling a meter deep and looks into the widening eyes of his brother.

   “That was so unfai…” Tim hits the even, mirroring, icy surface he hesitated touching before. But now he has no chance and while he hits said surface, it cracks under his tiny weight.

For a split second he thinks it will hold him, but it doesn’t. The ice completely breaks and Tim tumbles again. He doesn’t feel any water, just a seemingly never ending fall awaits him.

 

Chapter 2 Unintentional Discovery

 

Tim eventually hits the ground after a three meters deep fall, landing on his back. He hears a cracking noise and he screams in pain, “You idiot!” He shouts while his brother looks down at him, his face pale and shocked.

   “Oh man, oh man, I’m so sorry. Damn! Are, are you okay?” Bobby asks holding his right hand in front of his mouth.

   “No you dumbass, I’m not okay. I guess my ribs are broken you douchebag!”

   “What am I to do?”

   “Get mom or dad or both of them here… fast!” Tim holds his left side, searching for the broken ribs.     

   “Dammit!” Tim pulls out a small, silver ampule from one of his jacket pockets.

   “But the… they’ll know that we went too far away from the colony. You know that this means being grounded for two months?!” Bobby protests.

   “So, you want me to die here?” Tim asks and flips the tip of the silvery ampule.

   “N… no, ok, I’ll bring mom and dad with me. Don’t leave ok?”

   “Do I look like I could leave so easily?” Tim presses a small button at the side of the ampule and a pretty thick needle pops out of the top of it.

   “I’ll be back soon, I promise!” Bobby shouts and Tim can hear that his brother runs like hell. He better do so, or else he would beat him up real badly when he’ll be ok in a few days. Tim clenches his teeth and rams the needle into his chest where he can feel the broken ribs.

He huffs and hits the ground with his bare knuckles, while he empties the inside of the ampule into his torso. It’s a burning pain at first, but a second later it feels like a menthol drop is melting in his chest and after that all the pain is magically gone.

   “Thanks dad for giving me this. Man what would I have done without the Medi Foam.” He sighs and stands up, while the synthetic morphine fills his veins and starts the repair of his broken ribs. Small nano-bots are already trying to fix the broken ribs and the damaged flesh. Tim feels a lot better already and flings away the small silver ampule.

Cling cling cling…!

   “Huh? What’s that? This sounds strange.” The ampule vanishes in the darkness with a strange clicking noise till it stops moving. Tim remembers that he has a small LED flashlight in his right pocket. He searches it and e voila there it is. He turns the light, and can’t believe his eyes.

 

After a while Bobby arrives at the colony and enters his parents’ house. Totally exhausted he shouts for his mom and dad, “Mom… dad! Something happened to Tim, please come follow me!”

   “What? What happened? Where is Tim?” His mom rushes down the stairs, her eyes widened and in her shaking, cramping hands she still holds an old fashioned sheet of paper.

   “He…”

   “What’s the noise, who is lost?” His dad comes out of the near living room, rubbing his eyes, still a bit sleepy because he obviously couldn’t finish his little nap.

   “Tim fell down into a weird looking cave when we played catch me if you can.” Bobby can see how the anger and panic in his parents faces rises.

   “What? Where is he? Speak!” His mom shouts while his dad already grabs his keys.

 

Los Angeles Travel from April 1st to April 10th with photos

Bam, there it was. The opportunity to visit Los Angeles and so, my brother and I had to take it. We flew over the big pond…. and a lot of land masses, to reach our desired destination.

We started our visit in Hamburg, flew over to London via British Airways (it was cloudy as hell 😉  ) and then we finally traveled via American Airlines to Los Angeles. We arrived at evening in Los Angeles and waited four hours, till we were able to leave LAX in one of those rental car busses. We went to our car rental service (Dollar Rental Car… I hope to see some money for advertising hehe. JK). Ok, we waited there for another one and a half hour, till I was able to pick one of the many cars (there were four economy class cars XD). Well, I picked a small car. It was a Ford Fiesta (money for advertisements please to…). The car was a bit scratched, but overall in good shape and so we left the rental car parking lot and after a short while we entered one of the Freeways? Highways? I don’t know what it was, but it was overwhelming. I’ve never seen a five lane highway and so many cars at once before. Plus the first time we stepped out of the LAX terminal, the warmth and the overall impression was amazing.

Later we arrived in Calabasas and finally made it to the Good Nite Inn Calabasas motel. The whole crew there was unbelievably nice and courteous plus our room was pretty good too (didn’t expect that). From here on, I will only name some of the places we visited, because let’s face it, I’m a lazy f*ck :p Oh and when I say we drove here and there, I mean that I drove. My brother wasn’t old enough to drive in California.

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 Yosemite National Park

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We woke up early (no jetlag) and started our day with a visit at the local Starbucks (the moment I got addicted to iced tea chai latte) and Albertsons (man, I’ve never seen so many gallons of sunny d, milk etc. before O.O). The cinnamon chocolate bread and doughnuts were incredible btw. After that, I tried to find some snow chains, but was told, that we wouldn’t need them (contrary to what I read online).

We left LA and drove up to the Yosemite National Park and it was again very overwhelming for me to drive on these huge highways/freeways. It was great fun too, because nearly every driver we encountered would behave nice and foresighted. You might wonder why I mention it here, but here in Germany it’s not fun driving around and seems more like war most of the time (no kidding).  It was easy for me to merge in a full lane which was shocking (in a really good way). Here in Germany no one seems to know how the alternately merging traffic system works. The only thing I realized was, that you can’t drive as fast as you want (it’s possible in Germany on the freeways), which was a bit irritating at first (I wanted to go full speed so badly at times, but oh well 😉 ).

Later my brother and I arrived after several hours of driving through beautiful landscapes and some smaller towns/settlements.

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Let me get this straight, Yosemite National Park and the other Parks we visited in California are all amazing and beautiful. I don’t know if you all know how lucky you all are, to have this amazing landscape right in front of you (well more or less in front of you). I can only recommend those parks to everyone who has the time and money to visit them.

Yosemite in particular was breathtakingly beautiful. We arrived at a time where the waterfalls were extremely active which was great btw. The views were fantastic and it was a shame that we only could stay there for a few hours. Some roads were closed due to snow and ice, but we saw two famous waterfalls, the half dome and El Capitan. Simply an awesome day, where we witnessed true beauty and several eagles and squirrels: p. Yes, I had to mention the squirrels, because they were everywhere.

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Mount Whitney

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We woke up early again and started our journey to Mount Whitney. We had to drive through the desert (first time ever for us). The desert was something special, because I never thought that it was this beautiful and varied. We drove along a huge salt-lake (Owens lake afaik) and we bought some stuff in the small town Lone Pine (nice place). We then talked to the rangers at their station (very nice guys) and they told us, that we wouldn’t be able to make it up to the very top of Mount Whitney because of ice and snow again XD. Not a big deal for us, because we had to go back to LA this day and weren’t prepared for a two day trip. We arrived later at the Whitney Portal and met some other hikers. We took our stuff and hiked quite a while up the narrow path, until we had to turn around eventually. The views we got there were overwhelming. The sheer height was unbelievable for us (lone pine was sooooo small from up here). We then drove back, after we hiked at the Portal for a while.

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Los Angeles Image

Because it was my birthday, I wanted to have a quieter day. We visited Hollywood, the observatory, some parks and drove through many places in this huge town (thanks to the navigation system we never got lost). I never thought that many parts of LA would be that green and I really liked the mountain lion warnings here and there (we never saw one). All in all it was a really quiet day for us, but none the less very interesting for us, because many parts. It was also the first time that I saw one of the buildings that got destroyed in Independence Day (Will Smith movie). Luckily they had repaired it just in time for us to see it live XD … I hope you know that I’m kidding, right?

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Nevada, Rachel/Area 51 and a tiny bit of Las Vegas

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I have always been a sci-fi and aliens fan. Because of this it was only logically for me and my brother to visit the famous military installation (as far as possible at least). First of all, we didn’t knew exactly where to go (ok, this time our navigation system didn’t know where Rachel was), so we drove through the desert again, saw a part of the Death Valley and then we f*cked up our trip a bit. We drove to Pahrump, because we didn’t plan our trip as much as we should have done. Well, so we took our time and finally made it to Las Vegas. LV looks nice by day I thought, but we only saw a very small portion of it. It took us many hours till we arrived at the Little A’le’Inn bar and motel, where we got a map, to find the black mailbox etc. The black mailbox wasn’t black btw, what a bummer. I cried the next ten days because of this earth shattering false advertisement in my secret hideout. When we arrived there, it was so dark, that we hardly found the dusty tracks and we gave up to see the famous warning signs (next time :p). It was very late, when we arrived in Las Vegas again and damn, this city looks magically at night. All those lights, the gold, silvery lights and the many casinos, the pyramid etc, looked quite impressive at night. I have to confess, that I was really tired, after we left LV behind us. I had been driving for many hours straight (we started at 6 am or so and it was 1 am when I got seriously tired). So I had to take a few breaks here and there, followed by one half hour power nap and a few energy drinks. And e voila, we arrived at 4.25 am XD  slept for a few hours before we planned our next trip.

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Kings Canyon/Sequoia National Park

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I won’t write much about it. It was just stunning and wonderful. The whole trip was beautiful and seeing the orange, lemon etc. plantation was really cool. Plus, seeing a real, wild brown-bear, the redwoods and Kings Canyon was extremely satisfying. Enough said. Time for some photos.

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beaaar

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The last day in LA (for now 😉  )

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Same as every morning, we started relatively early and this time we visited LA again. We drove to the Pacific (windy as hell, but also very beautiful). Malibu and the rest of Calabasas were nice too. We visited Hollywood and the walk of fame again and ate at Hooters. And let me tell you something… the food there isn’t that great but not bad either. It’s just ok, and the waitresses wore too much makeup (they would have been beautiful without the tons of stuff on their faces). It might just be me, but I’m the kind of guy who likes women more, when they don’t overuse makeup. Ok, let’s stop this gibberish. Long story short, this was our last day in LA, and the last thing we visited, was the Santa Monica Pier. Also a must see in my book.

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The next day, we had to return our rental car and head for the Airport (LAX), only to learn, that our flight wouldn’t take off, and so we waited for 8 (?) hours for another flight, right to London and from there, back to Hamburg. Btw, I drive an old VW Polo here in Germany with stick shift and not an automatic one like the rental Ford Fiesta. Man I had a hard time figuring out, why my car was so loud here XD Seriously, it was awkward driving a car with stick shift again, after thousands of miles with an automatic.

And now some fun facts

1 It doesn’t matter where you live, Starbucks always writes your name wrong

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2 This drink isn’t that great (but not bad). It had no effect -_______-

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3 Listening to the Red Hot Chili Peppers during long trips in LA/the desert etc, was pretty damn epic.

4 My brother and I ate so much stuff, that we sometimes felt like balloons.

5 This was just a small collection of photos (I made over 500).

I can’t wait for my next travels. Next on the list are London, New York, Washington, Toronto, Boston (?) and LA again. Yep, I think that I fell in love with LA, there you have it.

See you all next time \m/^^\m/

Meet Nathan (Male Main Character from Grim)

Meet Nathan (Male Main Character from Grim)

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 Meet The Characters of Grim (working Title)

Hello everyone. I have something new for you. This time, it’s a meet the characters of Grim

I want to present you some of the main and supporting characters from my book, which is pretty far in its development cycle (I still need to edit half of the chapters).

I’ll give you a short bio and one or two snippets out of my book, to introduce each character (but only a tiny bit, because I don’t want to spoil much).

This time, I’ll present you Nathan, the male main character and his struggle in a post-apocalyptic world. This time, I’ll give you a first look at the first half of the third chapter by the way. So, please enjoy the small snippet (warning not 100% edited)  \m/^^\m/

 

Meet Nathan

 

Nathan is a man in his 40s. He’s a sometimes grumpy, cynical and introverted person. The world as we know it changed. The climate altered drastically and an epidemic, which turned humans into bloodthirsty mutants, killed over half of humanity (no, it’s not a zombie apocalypse btw.)

Unable to live amongst too many people, he stays away from the few congested cities. Instead he lives with a few other people in a small settlement in the Catskill Mountains.

Resources are scarce. Because of this, he grows plants in the backyard of his old family’s summer-house.

For many years he lived with the thread of mutants and scavengers and only had to care for himself. But during a cloudy, rainy day, a strange, young woman and her escort arrives at his door.

 

Chapter 3 (Snippet)

 

Unwanted Visitors

 

The clothes of the three are soaked with rainwater, but that doesn’t seem to bother the old man and the old woman. Only the freckled girl seems pretty uncomfortable. She repeatedly wipes away the rain from her face and her brown hair which peeps out of the hood from her red hoodie. The slender figure stands right before me, with a questioning look. That’s a clever idea, to send her first. I think I couldn’t hurt her. Even if she would attack me, I would find a way to not kill her at least. This must be a trap and what was this shadow thingy in my backyard? I better speed this whole thing up a bit, so I can watch TV again and have my quiet.

   “Where is the other person that was in my backyard?” I ask all three with my best grumpy voice.  There must have been a person on my property. I mean, I might have gone a bit paranoid during the years of loneliness, but I am far from having a pile of mashed potatoes in my head.

   “Honestly, there’s no one else around, I swear.” The freckled young woman answers, while rain drips from the tips of her wet, brown hair.

Something about her irritates me. She reminds me of someone I knew back in the better days, but I can’t find out who it was.

I chew nervously on the inner sides of my cheeks while I think about this topic. Gah, dammit, this doesn’t matter now! I still have to find out, what the three really want. Hmm, the young woman doesn’t share many similarities with the other two, much older disruptive elements. Whatever, many kids don’t look that much like their parents.

I nod to the two older people, “You are from Quebec, right?!” I ask in an even rougher tone than the one I use for the freckled woman and point at both of them with my shotgun. I am so ready to shoot their brains through the back of their heads just in case that they make a false move. But on the other hand, I’ve never seen scavengers using children as bait. I only heard some rumors about it.

   “Yes, yes we are from Quebec indeed and our daughter… well she just wanted to talk to someone else, than us. I mean, we drove around for many hours and she got bored and… you know how kids are. Am I right?” The older, bald man with a greyish, full beard laughs. I really know how kids could be at times, from my little brother back in the days. Good, long forgotten times. But this topic better should not distract me. Ok Nathan, a little bit more concentration now.

   “Hmm, but you know that it’s very dangerous to let a cute young lady talk to strangers in such a secluded area, right?” I ask and observe the reaction of all three. I really don’t know, but I have a bad feeling about this. The stuff the old man talks, doesn’t make sense to me.

   “Oh yes, but we thought that nobody this crazy would live here in this beautiful little settlement.” The oldie grins and I can see his left eyebrow twitching. I look at the older woman with my tired eyes and see that she seems a bit stressed right now. Are they thinking that I’m a killer? Are they really just a nice little family?

   “I, by the way can take care of myself pretty well. I… I mean I’m not a baby.” The freckled woman answers without being asked. She just stands there, watching at her own feet and holds her arms crossed. A little bit like a stubborn kid. But something else seems very suspicious to me right now. She always looks back to the two older persons and plays with the zipper of her thin, black vest from time to time which covers her rain-soaked red hoodie.

Maybe, if I really tell them the direction to the next restaurant, they’ll simply go away and leave me alone? This conversation took too much of my time already and I finally want my quiet. Hmm, and maybe the whole gun thing is way over the top for the little woman and the other two travellers? That might also have caused the strange behaviour of the three. Yeah, I’m just a jerk and don’t know much about human behaviour and it doesn’t get better the older I become.  OK, I think I better lower my gun completely and just hold it in my right hand. I inhale a deep breath of the humid, near tropical air, scratch the back of my head, lower my gun and give them the answer they wanted, “Ok, so you wanted to know the nearest restaurant, right? Well if you follow this street, then at the next junction you must turn left, drive about ten miles and then you’ll reach a pretty small village. There are plenty… I mean two restaurants which are really hard to miss. And… sorry for the gun thing, I’m a bit paranoid.”

   “Oh, no problem kind sir, it’s okay. I would have done the same I think and thank you very much for the information.” The old man answers and raises his right hand but I don’t answer his gesture. Instead I simply turn around. From the corner of my eyes I can see that the three finally get ready to turn around too. Finally they leave me alone now. It somehow feels good to help, even though it’s just a small piece of information. If they would have been scavengers, my gun would have scared them off most likely. On the other hand, if they would have been scavengers, they most likely had attacked me by now. Hmm, something feels weird, as if someone is watching me. I hear that the old man harrumphs. Oh no, I guess that the oldie wants to say something else to me. I turn around one more time, facing him this time. He stands a fair bit nearer to the young woman now and stares at me.

   “What is it now?” I ask him unnerved.

   “We got only one more question if I’m allowed to?” The old guy says. Strangely smiling he reveals yellowish teeth behind his thin lips.

   “Go ahead, what is it?” I ask him, already tired from all this conversations.

I notice that the young woman looks up to me and then slightly to her right, as if she wants to tell me something with her gestures. But the old guy already answers before I can figure out what she means.

   “Are those apple trees in your garden? My friend isn’t sure about that. He’s a bit simple.” The older man asks with a deeper voice than before and an eerie grinning appears on his leathery face.

   “What? How do you know? Friend?” I ask and try to raise my weapon. A huge, dark shadow, as fast as lightning, comes running at me from my left, through the rhododendron shrubs. Leaves and branches are flying around. Then the huge shadow hits me with some sort of two by four. The blast is unbelievably heavy and I nearly faint. For a split second my view fades to black. I feel how I fall inside my house and on the ground. My shotgun rolls over the wooden, clammy floor. The young woman shrieks for a second, before I hear the old man yelling at her. My view clears a bit and I see the huge shadow, which hit me, standing over me. He raises his hands, holding a large two by four. Rusty nails are sticking out of one of the sides. Fortunately this wasn’t the side he hit me the first time with. I instinctively kick him in the nuts, because I know that I can’t win a direct battle against such a hulk. The bulky man squirms and grunts angry, not letting loose from his archaic weapon. Without hesitation I crawl over the floor as fast as I can. After just a few meters, I realize that blood runs down my left temple and starts to drip on the parquet beneath me.

   “Fuck I knew it! Fucking scavenger pack! I should have shot you bastards from the beginning!” I shout and can finally grab my shotgun. The big guy nears me, grunting and snorting, but this time, I am the faster one.

 

Blam! A shot from my weapon hits the big guy right in his stomach.

 

He grunts, huffs and tumbles, but no blood seeps through his now ripped clothes.

   “Dammit, a bullet-proof vest!” I snort, reload, aim again and shoot him right into the ugly head.

His brain, blood and fragments of yellowish-white skull-bones splash against the jalousies before his heavy body lands on the wooden floor, with a rumbling noise.

   “Shit, I’ll have to clean the floor later.” I mumble, stand up, reload my weapon and walk over the twitching, headless body.

   “Who’s next? First come, first serve!” I yell through closed teeth as aggressively as I can.

   “You… you sick bastard!” The older guy shouts back and immediately shoots at me.

 

To be continued…. (many things will happen during the story and the characters will change a bit too – of course)

 

Picture drawn by myself (it’s a fairly quick doodle).

 

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