Writing from Brett Ruys of Whangarei

Whangarei writer Brett Ruys, with friends, is “planning on doing some collaborative writing where we each write from the perspective of our own characters in the same continuity/universe.”

“This is my first prose writing in a couple years, so it’s fun to give it a go again. I’m writing a half-Indian millennial werewolf. So that’s something.”

Here’s what Brett has written so far. He says comments/feedback would be nice, but not required. “I don’t read much these days so I could use more influences.”


Paper-thin walls aren’t great for study. This can be especially true if your roommate is more concerned with blasting MGMT songs in the living room than she is with your education.

Ian glanced at the digital clock to his left. 10:30 pm. A great deal of time had passed since he first sat down. His study pad, on the other hand, hadn’t changed in the slightest. Well, that wasn’t entirely true. He had managed to pointlessly outline the holes in his pad with each of his many coloured pens, creating beautiful outer rims down the page but doing very little to aid his knowledge of Voltaire. Finally, Ian’s patience ran dry. He closed his laptop, shelved his pad, and neatly dusted himself off before making his way to the living room.

Then it hit him. Well, a few things hit him: The first being he forgot how cold the rest of his apartment was. The second thing was that unmistakable waft of marijuana – which, as a werewolf, Ian was uncannily good at sniffing out. Thirdly was the deafening psychedelic soundscape of MGMT.

“Could you turn that down please,” called Ian.

After more than a slight delay, the girl paused her game of FIFA 16. Nearly tripping on a V can and no small array of drug paraphernalia in the process, Lucy at last discovered the stereo’s volume slider.

“You’re such a square,” said Lucy, batting a frizzy lock of hair from her face.

Ian folded his arms, leaning against the wall in the hallway. “You do realise I moved off-campus for a bit of peace and quiet, right?”
“Right. I’m sure your old roomies were the only reason you failed last semester. It’s not like you could have possibly had anything to do with it.”
“Well,” snapped Ian, forehead furrowed, “Excuse me for trying to actually make something of my life.”

There was long pause in conversation, with only MGMT lead vocalist Andrew VanWyngarden to fill the gap. It wasn’t until she’d finished rolling her joint that Lucy spoke again.

“I didn’t mean to upset you,” said Lucy. “Well, I kind of did, but… not really.”
“I’m not upset.” Ian didn’t return eye contact.
“Sure you are,” laughed Lucy. “Your face. It’s doing that whole… Tourette’sy thing you do whenever you’re mad about something.”

Ian quickly regained his composure. “…Tourette’sy? Really?”
“Ugh.” Lucy reached for her lighter. “Retardedly abled, then. Whatever.”

In spite of himself, Ian cracked a smirk. He donned the purple scarf he’d left on the couch that afternoon and made for the door. It was cold out, but home wasn’t the best place for clearing his head these days…

“I’m off,” said Ian. This is the point most roommates would have replied with something like “What, at this hour?!” Lucy, on the other hand, simply decided to unpause FIFA 16.

Despite supposedly being the “prime years of his life,” Ian Grey wasn’t sure he particularly liked his twenties. The compulsion to transform into a giant bipedal wolf-person wasn’t great either, but at least he could manage that.

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