Darmenzi Chapter 19: Dragged into Darkness

Here we go, Chapter 19 of Darmenzi, Dragged into Darkness, is up. It’s the first half of the climax. Destination: moon. Destination: destruction. It is the chapter where everything is ruined! Can our heroes stop a disastrous plan? Will they even be given a chance? Can Chee keep her temper checked? Will the orbs have the power to stop Darmenzi? Read on for the first half of the answers!

Also, Duth and Wally have a pleasant chat with the villain. Well, not really.

Want to see the ending before anyone else? It’s totally possible with my Patreon. I post chapters half a month early for patrons, and I include weekly updates on how slow work is now that I’m working the dayjob again. But work is being done. Just not during the day.

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Video of Slubes reading and free Slubes ebook!

Today marks three months since Slubes was re-released, and to mark this occasion a couple special things. First, the ebook is free until July 10th (and not August 10th, I seriously keep skipping July in my mind, the two months just run together for me, stupid naming convention, no, it is July 10th that the promotion lasts to). Just put in the coupon code LC88G at the Smashwords Slubes page when you get it and it will cost zero pennies.

The second thing is much sillier. I wanted to make a video of me doing some reading of Slubes, but my microphone has been broken for a while (AGAIN), so I got another idea. I pulled up the text-to-speech things on Windows 8 and fed the book through that! I think you’ll be pleasantly surprizzzzz

(Of course, if you’d rather just read an actual preview of it instead of listening to it like a normal person, such a preview is always available on the Smashwords page and on my website here.)

Creature Profile: Slube

I think it’s about time I get down to dedicating a blog post to explaining just what a slube is. So, just what a slube is? Quoted from the species appendix in Slubes:

“Slubes are a species related to the banana slug with bright yellow skin, two big eyes resting on their heads, and snouts like two stacked baguettes. They have long bodies that end in tails that are difficult to distinguish from the torso. They live almost exclusively on islands in the southern hemisphere of Mintop and are largely ignored by most of the planet. Their average lifespan is about 80 years.”

Physical Characteristics

Slubes are gastropods. Like how humans can see our relatives in chimpanzees and gorillas, slubes are relatives of the banana slug. Slubes are bigger and more athletic than slugs though, rather like how humans are with gorillas, except the opposite of that. Then again, it’s no contest with slugs, but gorillas? Oh geeze.

The outward appearance of the slube, as quoted from my personal encyclopedia: “Slubes have an oval head with two big eyes resting on top and a snout that extends outward like two baguettes. They have no teeth and no visible nose. Their bodies are rather long and end in a tail that’s about half as long as their torsos. They have two arms and no legs, and it is almost impossible to tell where the torso ends and tail begins when a slube is lying down, as the tail is more of an extension of the torso. Most slube clothing (consisting of a single item that looks like a shirt) ends just before the tail begins. Slube skin color is a bright yellow.”

Now let’s go into the inward characteristics. It may start getting gross, oh boy!! As mentioned, slubes have no teeth, but their throats have a layer of slime that slides most things ingested easily. Yes, that’s right, slubes don’t have to chew their food. And they have slimy throats. Yay! They have no bones, but instead a more cartilage-like substance throughout their body makes them flexible and squishy.

So far we’ve used the terms slimy and squishy* and established slubes don’t chew their food. WHO WANTS TO HEAR ABOUT SEXUAL CHARACTERISTICS!! Wow nobody?? I can wait ten years. This is the internet. In a decade someone will read this and then send me an email asking for intricate details.

Okay but seriously, I’ll just briefly go over the egg cycle or something. Slube eggs actually remain in the female’s tail for most of the cycle; this would be equivalent (wait, that’s how you spell equivalent?? really?? seriously, english, what is wrong with you. I hereby declare equivilant to be the new spelling. No wait, equivilent. No, equivelint. No, pineapple.) to human fetuses being in the legs/feet, so not surprisingly, during this time the slube has difficulty moving. In the final stage, the egg usually pops out and hatches within a few hours.

Fun fact: None of that appears in my novel, nor does it appear in my next novel. In fact, I currently have no plans for it to appear in any novel. It’s in my encyclopedia just in case I need it! Because you never know—maybe it will appear in a novel!

… Whoops. This was supposed to be a brief overview. Uhh. Next time I’ll try not to go so in-depth. I mean, next time I probably won’t really have as many details, since the slube is one of the more fleshed-out species in my encyclopedia. Well, it’s about in the middle, really. I know. There’s some with far, faaaaar more than you see here.

Slubes reach maturity around age 20 and have an average lifespan of about 80 years, with deterioration of the body beginning rapidly around 70.

History and Culture

As is mentioned in Slubes, slubes come from an island called Flaeneath that was ravaged in a war thousands of years ago. They left the island and arrived on Hackney, where they formed a settlement, Nottle, which remained small by many slubes going to live in nearby, more diverse settlements.

Regarding the planet Mintop as a whole, the slube is almost completely ignored. Outside of Hackney and the nearby Interp, slubes are not even a footnote in the history and culture of the planet. Even on Interp they are few and far between, and there they have a reputation for being simple and primitive.

So that’s the slube. Related to an animal we humans use to name insignificants, considered by some to be simple, and completely unnoticed by the rest. So who else was I gonna focus on? Anyway, I’ll try to keep doing one of these each week on Sundays; next week, the main area of Slubes.

*Oh, yeah, and slubes aren’t slimy on the outside like slugs. They’re really quite smooth! Look, I’m just trying to say that they’re not gross on the outside. They’re gross on the inside, sure, but so is every living creature. EVERY. LIVING. CREATURE.