Back to the Old Days

So my quasi-resolution for 2015 (following the Te Adoro list on twitter) didn't work out.

Well, okay…kind of.

I'm still following Jim Cav, Alan Rickman, Jason Isaacs, Gerry Butler and Danny Pino…but Danny's the only one who's actually said anything in a while. The rest seem content to let their accounts collect dust.

Sidebar: if you're the ubercurious sort (like me), here are the last tweet dates:

  • Jim: 14 December
  • Alan: 29 March 13
  • Jason: 2 January (I think I did see that, because I kind of cringed at his comments [*giggle*])
  • Gerry: 2 October

There's one I didn't stay with on Twitter, but I caught up with on Facebook and am slowly working my way into their company.

Back before Ben Cumberbatch got popular (Benny…drool…), way back when I was a padawan (haha)…well…some of us were getting…Byrned. (*somewhere between delighted and evil laughter*)

(I'm very well aware that I just used a Star Wars word in tandem with Gabriel Byrne. But really…Gabriel with a lightsaber? What ultra nerd doesn't want to see that? Come on!)

I think I was just transitioning out of my Schwarzenegger phase, because I'm pretty sure I'd gone to see End of Days  just for him. (My dad took me, since I was only thirteen.) But then this happened:

(That makes my little Irish heart sigh, even today.)

It was never as bad as Val; or later, Greg and Jamie.

Didn't have to be. Sometimes, subtle is best. 😉


Except for the part where I had that photo posted on the wall at the end of my bed.

That isn't very subtle at all, is it?


I think the ultimate fan experience–besides reading a book your idol has written (and yes, I've read Pictures in My Head at least three times!)–is trying something just because you heard they think it's good. In this case, it was Toblerone.

I don't eat it very often (even though it's easier to find than it used to be–for me, anyway) because then it wouldn't be special. But to remember I first tried Toblerone at fifteen or sixteen just because Gabriel used to nom on it during Jimmy Cagney movies as a boy…well, that's special, isn't it?


I went to dear old Eire, as an exchange student when I was seventeen.

(The dot after Wexford is a bit off-kilter, since I was in Carlow proper.)

Even better, I still keep in touch with my exchange friends! Yvonne (her mathair didn't know Yvonne was French until later) is now living in Dublin as a producer for UTV and Kristina (from Slovakia) just got engaged yesterday! (The third of my friends in two months…must be nice!)


If all that wasn't good enough (besides a few movies…I like End of Days and Man in the Iron Mask; but Siesta was strange, Stigmata made me nauseated and Ghost Ship left me bored), I started studying Gaelige last month!

(Vonnie [who went to immersion school all her life] says it's hard; I say it's still easier than algebra.)

I have a long way to go to get to the same stumbling mediocrity I have with Spanish (decent reading, "meh" speaking and writing), but I've finally started! (I don't even remember when I made up my mind to do it…maybe after meeting Vonnie and her siblings.)

"But Dayanara," I hear my longtime readers saying. "I thought you showed your adoration for someone by writing poetry or novels about them? Where's Gabriel's?"

Well, my dears…where do you think the practice started? 😉


One "story seed" with Gabriel connections is a gender- and country-swapped version of Man in the Iron Mask, called Dos Infantas ("Two Princesses", in Spanish–though the titling system in Spain is slightly more complicated than that.) I've been nursing that for a while…it was initially French, like the original book, but when I run into French words and phrases, it's the literary equivalent of stepping on a Lego. So even though they were real gentlemen (that was shocking, by the way), I moved them to Spain and gave them daughters.

Charles de Batz-Castlemore, Lord D'Artagnan: in the movie, Lord Charles was known by his title and was fiercely loyal to King Louis, remaining as a captain in the Musketeers even after his friends retired.
Jasmín de la Reina, Marquesa de Sierra Madrona: literally "Jasmine of the Queen", the marchioness remained in Las Mosqueteras even after her friends swore off, saying that Queen Amelia had broken every vow she'd ever made. Before being further ennobled by the title "de la Reina", Lady Sierra Madrona was known as "Jasmín de Murciélagos y Mascastillo". (My interpretation of the historical name. Literally, "Jasmine of Bats and More Castle".)

Henri d’Aramitz, Lord of Aramits: in the movie, Aramis became a Jesuit priest in his retirement. (By the by: anyone notice that the current pope is a Jesuit? I think MovieAramis would be highly interested in such a development.)
Dama Sofía de Puertollano: began to write to a convent before her retirement from Las Mosqueteras and eventually became a lay sister with them. (Lay sisters are those that are associated with convents and share their beliefs, but do not live in community.)

Sidebar: in my universe, Las Mosqueteras are automatically knighted after a year of service. "Dama" means "dame" in Spanish.

Furthermore, I used the Spanish versions of their names for their fathers; so Charles, Henri, Armand and Isaac became Carlos, Enrique, Armando and–lacking a name for Isaac, Léal. ("Loyal", which is also the middle name of a Latino character in another novel.)

Armand, Siegneur de Sillègue, d'Athos et d'Autevielle: does anyone know what Athos does in the movie, besides give into his depression and plot revenge?
Dama Catalina de Luciana: went back home to become a seamstress in retirement, since I had nothing to flip for her, unlike the others.

Isaac de Porthau: I think they should've taken Athos and Porthos's real life cousinship and plopped it into the movie…maybe it would've allowed Athos to do more than mope! Can you imagine poor Athos looking after drunk-ass Porthos? (P.S.: How very Porthos of Gerard Depardieu was it to pee in the middle of the plane in 2011? [*shakes her head*])
Dama Raquel de Almagro: ended up as a barmaid and sometime prostitute in Almagro. Sadly, the weight problem is hereditary, hence the nickname "Vellosa" ("Fluffy").

But I haven't been nursing that–or any version of it–for perhaps as long as I've been nursing the real juice, Back from the Edge.




The first manuscript I finished–approximately eight years before finishing the first draft of Ophelia–was called Back from the Edge. The focal point, to me, wasn't the coven of Witches, but the tri-form Satan-being, made up of avatars for Val, Mandy Patinkin (yes, really…I called him "the Murderer" for a bit, for reasons I'll explain in a moment) and Gabriel. I don't remember what all was involved, but I know there was an Eye of Horus tattoo that the Being used to control the high priestess (Sable Milan), a Satanic wedding, Val's avatar defecting and showing the coven a super weapon to use to defeat the Being and Sable jumping off a roof to avoid being killed by Mandy's form of the Being.

But the current version is much less complicated. (Or so I think.)


Back from the Edge is a hybrid of a manuscript with that title and another called 501 Fridays. Sable returns as a firefighter whose life–and coven–get turned upside down when she rescues a stranded hiker in the park. The twist in the game is that the Christians want to stay the heck out of this one–banking on the old supposition that Witches are Satan-worshippers, so whatever happens to the Sisters of the Silver Moon, they deserve. Everyone, that is, except for the pastor of the little church across the street.

What stops this from being a carbon copy from the movie–besides the character name changes and the story alteration–is in the fact that we get to see Satan's personal life in between Sable's story and watch his interactions with Dawn, the former human who overthrew Lucifer and returned Satan to the throne. It's interesting to see how their relationship develops, given that Dawn was still alive when Satan was banished to The Edge and they had therefore never met.

I can't say whether Satan will give up on Sable and fall in love with Dawn, because this novel is so far on the back burner, it's in the freaking oven! (It's one of the few manuscripts I've never determined an ending for, actually.) All I know is that Gabriel would still be Satan; a little wiser and a little more grey after his time in exile. Sable was originally for me, but Dawn/Europa/Sandra* has the more interesting backstory.

*Dawn was the name Satan gave her after receiving her as a "gift" from Lucifer, who called her Europa. Her birth name was Sandra Shepherd.

Do I have your attention, now that I've dragged this lovely old te adoro out of the closet and dusted him off?

I hope so. 😉

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