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nonprofit composer + artist • she/her • loves drums • advocate for emotional literacy in music • meep • EN/FR OK

Annette Singh @Troisnyx

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Lancashire, UK

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Troisnyx's News

Posted by Troisnyx - June 26th, 2021


Here's to keeping things real, musically and otherwise.



I've placed every single last credit and special thanks into the description of the track above, which I did together with friends to celebrate ten years on this site.

But in case I forgot:


Cheers @TomFulp, you're an absolute star.


Also, my friends and I are more than musically capable. Time you folks started listening to the Audio Portal more. We musicians on here are capable of so much, as some of us demonstrated above. And we will continue fighting to be heard.


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Posted by Troisnyx - May 19th, 2021


I'm done being nice.


Whoever thinks that people like myself didn't work hard for our craft can fuck right off to the Sun.


I'mma say it louder for the people at the back: whoever thinks that people like myself didn't work hard for our craft can fuck right off to the Sun.


My anniversary approaches in a month and a bit. There will be hell to pay on that day — not just for people who disparaged me, but for people who disparaged my friends and most of the Audio Portal. None of us ever needed their permission to be seen and heard, and none of us ever will.


I love NG. You'd think, that as an audio mod having to deal with widespread audio theft and other kinds of fuckery, I'd be sick and want to leave. But my friends make Newgrounds. People make Newgrounds. Their songs, their camaraderie, and their candour, make it worthwhile. Whether the action happens directly on the site, or on related servers, I am often surrounded by friends from here.


And of course, anyone who bothers to listen in will know that we have gone from strength to strength as far as our music is concerned.


If defending that, and insisting on more love for the Audio Portal as a whole, makes me a piece of shit, well, have at me then. Actually have the courage to come and face me, and my struggling musician friends.


Many of us have argued that the Audio Portal, by nature of the craft itself, gets the least love. You have to invest time and energy into something that you can't see, and so there's a greater risk involved. In many cases the reviews on pieces of music come precisely from other musicians — because we all know what that shit feels like.


I am deeply aware of many of their struggles, being privy to a venting channel on my server. I don't want to hear the excuse that "X musician struggled, but made it, so all the other struggling ones don't matter."


I have zero respect for anyone who talks bullshit about us, our struggles, the Audio Portal, and our craft. That includes some big names on here, one of whom I have called out on Twitter. If you think you can fight someone who has persevered with her music for TEN YEARS despite not having the right to work due to being an asylum seeker, then by all means, come fight me. I'm waiting.


If you think you can fight people who are persevering with their music despite struggling to afford medicine or food, come at us. We're waiting. Our music is waiting.


But you won't, because you're a bunch of fucking losers.


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Posted by Troisnyx - April 29th, 2021


Not long after the start of quarantine, I released a song called hallowed silence. I am pleased to finally share with you its video.



Seeing as hallowed silence was a "quarantune," I decided to give the video the same treatment, that loose production feel typical of a quarantine video. I hope you all enjoy.


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Posted by Troisnyx - April 19th, 2021


"Who do I believe? (The judges), or Aivi and Surasshu?"


That is all, and I think that should sum up what I felt about how apparently industry ready any of my pieces are.


I'm looking at a particular few of you, you damn fucking well know who you are.


Say what you will about them two; their music is critically acclaimed, and they have been active in encouraging even newer, smaller musicians through the Maj7 digital fusion server. That's more than can be said for what I endured last year.


Whose word do I take — people who have tired in one subsection of the industry trying to spill some tea, or people who are slogging in another subsection of the industry whose mission it is to tell us that music is meant to be a whole lot more?


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Posted by Troisnyx - April 12th, 2021


Aside from the fact that I finished a marathon composition run lasting 40 days, one for each day of Lent, I'm not exactly sure what to write. My mind hasn't been good.


I guess I can start off with this, I suppose: the last couple full drawings (as opposed to sketches) that I've posted on here have been FPed one after the other, and it feels very meep. This was the stuff of my dreams when I joined NG but didn't know how to draw to save my life.



And if anything, maybe I've finally begun to blossom on here, who knows?


It leaves me to thank the people who have deemed my music and artwork worthy of being broadcast to thousands on the front page; I am grateful for, and pleasantly surprised by, every instance of it.


I wish I had some nice words of advice to give, or generally meepy things to say besides what I've already said, but lately, and today especially, I have been drawing blanks. My Easter so far has been... eh, and we're tentatively opening some public places round here in the UK today (and I am waiting for crowds to thin before even attempting to go out).


To put it bluntly, I've long felt like I've been beaten by the proverbial waves. That's a feeling that isn't going to go anytime soon.


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Posted by Troisnyx - February 16th, 2021


Absent from socials as a means of hopefully recharging, so I've taken to posting a long showcase reel of my recent stuff.



This reel also features my recent release, the new world (previously known by the title dream ship).



I will be spending this Lent concentrating on things closer to me.




In other news, the NG Orchestral Composition Contest has recently begun. If you feel like you've got some orchestration skills to flex, come and join in the fun!


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Posted by Troisnyx - January 22nd, 2021


Hey everyone, new release out, which I managed to finish in the small hours of the morning, and it is the culmination of 15 years of ideas, changes, experiences, and suffering:



I want to take this time to mention that ten years ago, when I picked up FL Studio 9 for the first time, I believed I could do things like this, but I couldn't imagine it, I certainly couldn't explain how.


I don't know if this song was done ten years to the day -- I don't even remember the date in January of 2011 when I picked up FL for the first time -- but I feel that I couldn't ask for a better work to sum up these ten years. Most of them were spent with my beloved Seán, whose support and love I am eternally grateful for. I couldn't ask for a better song for these ten years of music production, whose lyrics are sung from his point of view.


I also am eternally grateful for the support and small acts of kindness given to me by so many on this site and elsewhere. For me, this isn't ten years on Newgrounds -- that date will actually be 26 June 2021 -- but it's certainly a musical milestone for me.


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Posted by Troisnyx - December 30th, 2020


I'm not normally one for retrospective posts. This year, in particular, I feel ill-suited to type out a retrospective post because much of our year has been spent in cautious, even terrified waiting. But I think I'll type one out this time -- because it grounds me in the knowledge that this year is about to end, and I'm about to cross the threshold into a new year, even if it's looking to be similar to this one.


This year has seen me at my most creatively active to date. And I think that warrants a post all on its own. Let us begin, shall we?




Before Lockdown 1


On New Year's Day of this year, half my drum kit was stolen. I would only manage to find one of the stolen drums before the whole nation shut down due to the pandemic. My beloved Seán and one of my bandmates, Greg, helped me to procure a secondhand kit to replace the one that was stolen.


I spent January working on my first solo release of the year, child of the woods, my longest song at the time of writing at nearly eight and a half minutes.



My doujin circle, Aetherhythm, released our first full original, an EP titled Astgaban. I did the last two tracks of that EP. The final track was the circle's tribute to one of our own, AvaliaKasa, who suddenly died at the end of 2018 -- she and a number of the doujin circle friends went way back, and so it was devastating to have lost her. Aetherhythm would wind up tabling at the Spring M3 convention, which was sparsely attended due to Covid-19.


Mere days before the first national lockdown was announced in the UK, my band (The Just Numbers) and I had our final performance for the year, on 15 March.




Lockdown 1


The first lockdown in the UK would last a whole three months. That was our spring and summer gone. To begin with, I took part in the Shelter in Place jam on NG with this entry, the first drawing of mine to have gotten frontpaged in a while.



Now I'm aware that it was probably because of the whole tag attached to the drawing, but hey, I'll take what I can get.


In April, I took part in the penultimate 21 Days of VGM. I say "penultimate" because there was one last one, held in the summer of this year, which I didn't take part in -- and the organisers are not holding these marathon runs anymore. Instead, they're holding shorter, more thematic challenges called 7 Days of VGM. I posted my progress regularly on Twitter, and some of the tracks made their way to Newgrounds after varying amounts of time. This period gave me not one, not two, but three whole frontpaged tracks, which I certainly didn't expect.


My output with 21 Days of VGM was noticed by @ForgottenDawn, who linked me up with @ZackTheGreat, who brought me on as a soundtrack writer and concept artist for an RPG in development called Adventures of Zack the Great; I have posted a good few pieces of concept art for it on Newgrounds this year, including this one which got a frontpage feature:



As my current circumstances dictate me to do things strictly nonprofit, my involvement with AOZTG is currently strictly nonprofit.


I also released hallowed silence in early April, as a sort of reflection on the national lockdown, the pandemic, Holy Week, and the lives lost.



On 12 April, which coincided with Easter Sunday this year, my Seán and I celebrated my 29th birthday in a very low-key celebration. There were only two of us, some lemon cake, a bunch of tubs of Pringles and other snackeroos. The day after that, 13 April (Easter Monday), I hit quite a milestone of 1,000 followers.


Between April and June I presided over the Art-Inspired Music competition, together with @Random-storykeeper, @Seth, and @VocalOutburst.


Towards the end of June I also began the process of presiding over this year's Newgrounds Audio Deathmatch, together with @Spadezer, VocalOutburst, @NekoMika, @AceMantra, @Jacob, and @SplatterDash.


For both these competitions I wrote thorough reviews for each piece at every stage, and compiled them all in PDFs exported from MS OneNote. I still have archives of every single last review I've written, so if any of you have taken part in either of these contests and would like to hear the feedback I gave over your pieces, hit me up.




Post-Lockdown 1


In July I auditioned for the Newgrounds Audio Underdogs competition, and got in by a whisker. I made my disdain over the process known across forum threads, and even on the Newgrounds Podcast server immediately after recording for the NGADM Finale Show had stopped. My suspicions and outcries were proven to be correct when a number of people who were eliminated from the NGUAC for not being "industry standard" enough actually made it far into the Newgrounds Audio Deathmatch -- which was meant to be a step up from the NGUAC. One even got second place!


Nearly everyone I mentioned this shambles to was speechless that this happened. I began my entry for the NGUAC immediately after learning that I made it in -- but as the hours progressed, it left even more of a sour taste in my mouth, and so I resigned from the competition.


This song, which I started and finished within a two-week period, would have been my Round 2 entry.



I much value artistic integrity and emotional literacy over the thought of winning. But one of the reviews I received said it all: that point marked a dramatic change in the way I made music and mixed it. I felt unstoppable. I could pull off anything I put my mind to, however difficult it might seem at any given time.


Also in July, I began a small Dungeons & Dragons group on my Discord server. We are currently on the slow march towards the end of our inaugural campaign.


Not long after that, I revisited A cause de l'ombre, a piece I composed in 2018 in the depression that I suffered and still continue to endure. I added to it and made it the definitive version, and it was given a feature.



Not long after that, @ninjamuffin99 approached me asking if I'd be willing to score for this year's Sketch Collab. I jumped at the idea. I went over my thoughts about it in this post.


The results were simply legendary. I had the help of @AkioDaku, Juan D. Cruz and my bandmate Greg for A Stroll Down St Pancras, which was released on the 10th anniversary of my arrival in the UK.



That would become the music for a feast of weird, wacky, unsettling, and uncanny animation:



In between the making of Pancras, Seán, Greg, and I travelled to Glasgow for a few days, and saw the sights. I also had the opportunity to present this drawing as a gift to @matt-likes-swords, in large part as a thank-you for the games and for what involvement I had with bits and pieces of the soundtrack and having one collaborative track of mine and @Phyrnna's in the game.



I wanted to meet @ronjaw as well, but she was self-isolating. Maybe next time, hopefully, when things are a lot saner and safer.


@AkioDaku interviewed me for his podcast, Heady & Weird.



From that interview a friendship began to blossom, and possibly my involvement with a second band, as its drummer.


I also hit the milestone of 1,100 followers during this period, which I was honoured and humbled by at once.




Lockdown 2


With the help of a friend, I set up an Instagram page. In addition to my compositions, I wound up doing a number of drum improvisation videos which I shared on Twitter and Instagram; Instagram is probably the easier place of the two to access them. Sadly, the bass pedal on my e-kit (which was a trigger switch) gave me pains that travelled up to my spine, so I stopped playing the drum kit for a while until Seán and I could replace the pedal mechanism. However, I still continued to do improvisations on my medieval snare and a number of hand drums.


Lockdown 2 saw me returning to the game jam scene after five years of absence. I set up a page on itch.io. I also joined a number of game jam servers, the first of them being the Wholesome Game Jam, an unranked jam. Halloween was approaching, so I scored some quick tracks for a game called Haunted Yard. Two of the tracks were featured on the front page. I was astounded to have come up with a soundtrack in such a short time again after not having done this exercise for years.



In mid-October, I brought back the Newgrounds Worst Song Competition after a five-year hiatus. The contest in question would also be covered by the Newgrounds Podcast, and gave us side-splitting, ear-shatteringly painful tracks just in time for @PsychoGoldfish Day.


In secret, I began lyric-writing and recording the various drums at home for a project which I hold close to my heart. I'll get to that later.




Post-Lockdown 2


I took part in the 3rd Beginners' Circle Jam and the inaugural Miracle Tea Jam in November, and the Geta Game Jam earlier this month. The tracks for the Beginners' Circle and Miracle Tea Jams are up, but not the Geta Game Jam; I shall be uploading that one soonish.


Towards the end of November, that personal project I mentioned earlier, which would turn out to be my rendition of the Carol of the Drum, went in earnest. It was intended to feature both @Spadezer's and @Riy0's vocals; unfortunately due to computer troubles, Riy0 needed to pull out. Spadez and I began recording vocals in November and finished in early December; I finished it on 14 December and waited a whole ten days till the promised release date of Christmas Eve. I go over the process, and what it means to me, in another newspost.



I would spend the week and a half before Christmas playing the organ for funerals, rehearsing with my choir, doing socially distanced carolling and a couple other services, and singing, playing the organ, and drumming for the Christmas Masses. I did two vigils and one on Christmas Day.


On Christmas Day, I finally found the words to express what I want to do with my music, and what kind of music truly fits me best. I took the plunge and released a video of myself singing and beating the drum to a medieval carol, Gaudete, all on my lonesome on the organ loft of one of the two parishes I attend. I consider myself relatively small-time on Twitter and Instagram; for the small size of followers and friends I have on those places, that video held a captive audience, and I received a good few outpourings of love. You can view it here.




Highlights


Audio


Art


This is notable, in that it was the first piece of artwork whose drawing process I streamed live anywhere; specifically, I went live with the drawing of this on the Newgrounds Podcast Discord server. This was the first time anyone had actually ever seen me drawing on MS PowerPoint, and from that moment, people began to take me at my word when I talked about drawing on MS PowerPoint.


Cover artwork for please take care of this star and a drawing otherwise done in grief.


My first frontpage of the year.


The first piece of concept artwork for Adventures of Zack the Great that I ever posted on here.


The piece of AOZTG artwork that got frontpaged.


The drawing that was printed on a canvas as a gift.


Cover artwork for A Stroll Down St Pancras.


Cover artwork for Carol of the Drum.




And with that, that's me done for the year. A heady mix of depression, trauma, and all sorts of feelings positive and negative have transformed me into the artist that you've seen this year. While I have been prolific and better able to channel my emotions into my artistic output, I still have a lot to grapple with. I don't think 2021's gonna get any easier, but I'll at least still keep fighting.


I'm writing this whole thing as impassively as I can because I am struggling to positively connect with a lot of the things I've done, and I've lost all sense of time. I still hold some of these things fondly, but this year, my heart has bled for others and with others. I've also made a lot of friends in the VGM scoring community, and I am thinking of them and my other friends more than I am thinking of myself and my own state of well-being.


I shall be greeting the new year with those whom I hold closest to me, especially my Seán, with some food, drink, friendship, the beating of the drum, prayers, and the warmth and light of a fire. This is what I want to cherish. I want the passage into different times to be marked with the things that last, and I want it to be done in the presence of, and together with, the people whom I am most grateful to have in my life.


I am grateful for every single one of you. But when crossing the threshold into rites of passage and important times, I think these nights are best kept intimate.


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Posted by Troisnyx - December 24th, 2020


Hey everyone! I'm pleased to bring you this new collaboration with @Spadezer, a carol that has truly touched my heart—


Carol of the Drum is OUT NOW!!!


I hope this warms your hearts as it did mine many years ago when I first heard it.


Enjoy, and happy Christmas and happy holidays!


I will likely update a bit after Christmas Day.



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6

Posted by Troisnyx - December 23rd, 2020


The cover of Carol of the Drum (a.k.a. Little Drummer Boy) lovingly done by @Spadezer and myself releases tomorrow, 24 December 2020.


Ahead of its release, I want to talk about why it's so special to me, and what I endured to get to this point. I'll also be talking a bit about the process behind it.


CW: child abuse, violence, misogyny, transphobia, sexual abuse, rape.




I first heard this carol, and the sound of the drum, when I was three years old, and my path was set.


While I often feel stupid for not admitting to myself that my path was set and that this was what I was destined to do, I never really had the space.


For, you see, my drumming is tied inextricably with my history and who I am as a person. Yes, the drum is my favourite instrument, but I feel like I'm drumming in response to something. It is often a joyful response to being loved, cherished, appreciated as a person. Given the time, I would happily do a drum recital in front of my friends just to thank them for being there with me.


I guess, enduring a sorrowful history leaves me with no words to express my sorrow, and no words to express joy when it is there.


What I endured as a drummer, and as a person, is not something that I wish upon anyone, even my worst enemy. I would normally choose to keep it to myself, telling it on the rare occasion perhaps. But today, it's important for me to write it down, because all of these things led me to where I am today.


  • At age 3 I heard the sound of the drum and this special carol for the first time. From that point, I would pray through rhythm on a frequent basis. My body had already been violently treated prior, by my own parents, but this was new ammunition to them.


  • At age 5 I saw and heard a drum kit being played for the first time. I desperately wanted to play, but both parents made certain to tell me in front of people that "drumming isn't for girls." My parents would sooner believe that I was a lesbian or a trans boy, than believe I was a cishet(?) girl who loved the beat of the drum, and they made that known plenty through the years.


  • Since then, whenever I pleaded and begged to play, they would beat me up very badly. They beat me up for anything that didn't fit their precious little picture of what they wanted me to be. On a few occasions I lost consciousness as a result of the beatings. During this time, I kept looking for a drum to play, and when I did, I played it softly -- since if I did play it loudly, people would hear me, and my parents would inevitably find out, and the cycle of abuse would begin again. This would go on for years. This was also exacerbated by the fact that the place where I grew up hated minorities like myself, and so I had little support from school or anywhere. I was on my own.


  • At age 15, on Christmas Eve -- the anniversary of which is also the release date of that cover of the Carol of the Drum -- I was at a Christmas Vigil Mass with my immediate and extended family, and I happened to see a second cousin of mine playing kit that day, part of his parish music ministry. I'd been holding in my desire for years for fear of being badly beaten up again. I was in church, with the tabernacle right in front of me, and I was certain that they'd beat me up again -- but this time would be a point of no return. Believing my life forfeit, I looked straight to the tabernacle in front of me, and then told my parents about this. Surprisingly, I was spared that night. Something changed in my mother, too, and I can't quite put my finger on what.


  • At age 16, I tried out the drums for the first time. It was everything I yearned for, and more. No one taught me; this was my own natural ability then. I was, however, prevented from taking it up because of my GCSEs.


  • At age 17, I was gifted my first (electronic) kit, at my mother's urging. Little did I know back then that she wanted to make things right with me, in part because she was dying. In the month or so that she could do this, she sat by me to listen to me playing. Then, she was taken to hospital, and a hundred days later, she passed away. My father prevented me from showing her my playing for fear that I would "upset her" -- but the day before she died, while he was absent, I managed to show her a video of my playing. She smiled, and she motioned to a visiting family friend that I could play drums now. Now my father had promised me drum lessons once we got my mother out of hospital okay -- I don't know if that was to placate me or what; he knew she was dying. And while we were at home, he decided to make his feelings about my playing known, beating me up and calling me names on a regular basis.


  • I would spend the next few years in conscription, preparing to read law, and being bundled out of the country of my birth due to it being unsafe for me. In the absence of a drum, I drummed on my chest until it was red and painful.


  • At age 21, after begging friends to help me find a kit and finding out that they took the brunt of the verbal, sexist, and likely racist abuse meant for me, I felt like I had nowhere to turn. Someone whom I once considered a friend recommended that while waiting for a kit, I could try playing the bodhrán, if my desire to keep the beat was strong. With what little money I had I bought my first bodhrán, and began to beat it.


  • At age 22, homelessness, destitution and fear for what I endured growing up drove me to Preston, and drove me to begin the asylum process. I also joined the choir at the parish of St Wilfrid's, and I couldn't believe my ears when they said that one of their former members, who had sadly passed away earlier that year, used to beat the bodhrán for some hymns. I put myself forward, and my journey as a percussionist finally began in earnest. I also met my beloved Seán that year, and his late father used to beat the bodhrán -- it was his favourite instrument -- and the beat was one of a number of things that brought us together. My choirmistress would also take the decision to assign me to the timpani after hearing me play percussion for the first time, and that cemented my use of matched grip and laid the groundwork for my kit drumming. Unfortunately, that year would also mark the year that I would face reprisal in the form of sexual advances, as a result of my outward display of passion whenever I beat the drum. A flatmate would sexually assault and then rape me using my drum face as "consent."


  • At age 24, I finally had regular access to a kit, because I came across Soundskills, the community centre in the suburb of Brookfield, and discovered that they had drums at their studio.


  • At age 26, my friend from Soundskills -- Greg Slater -- decided to have me as the drummer in his newest band, The Just Numbers. My first ever live performance as a drummer happened that year. Bear in mind that most people would do this in their teens. I didn't have the chance until I was 26. Not long after, I was gifted my first acoustic kit by my Seán.


  • At age 28, after much wrangling on the part of my Seán and some friends including Greg, I finally was able to begin formal training on the drums. I talked about it at length in a previous newspost, but long story short, my tutor immediately put me on prep for Grade 8, the highest examinable grade by most exam boards, after hearing me play. My kit would eventually be stolen on New Year's Day 2020, and Seán and Greg helped me to procure a replacement -- which turned out to be better than the original kit, but I miss the original. (You always miss the first of everything, if it gave you a good experience.)


Which leads us to today. I am now 29, and this carol is done with the weight of everything that I've borne. Tomorrow, I release a carol close to my heart -- I release the song that sums up who I desire to be, and perhaps, who I always have been.


Everything that I mentioned above is just a summary, scratching the surface.


So why am I writing this, you ask? Well, those of you who have known me for a while know one thing about me in particular: I cannot, and will not, keep silent about an injustice that has happened until it has been corrected. That's all.




This was long thought out; I had the idea in my head roundabout the time that I was writing A Stroll Down St Pancras, in part for this year's Sketch Collab. I'd actually wanted to do it for years, but this year it really felt concrete. I felt that my mixing, my singing, and my drumming had reached the heights I'd hoped for this carol to be pulled off. @Spadezer suggested that we collaborate, and I was hoping to find other male vocalists to help me since I could barely reach baritone on my own. @Riy0 offered to collaborate as well -- but unfortunately, he needed to pull out due to computer troubles and difficulty with the couriers when having a new computer delivered.


I began recording in September; I concentrated on the drums first. I wanted them to be tribal and thumping and tight. Then, in October, I wrote the harmonies and sent MIDIs to Spadez and Riy0 in November. Spadez and I began recording vocals in earnest in November, and at the end of that month, I had enough parts to begin mixing.


I finished recording vocals in early December.


Mixing the song was a nightmare. Those of you who have been following me on Twitter and interacting with me on Discord may have found out, perhaps, that this project had a lot of gremlins. It was shifting pitches and dynamics and reverb settings where I explicitly didn't touch these. I did my best with a very uncooperative project file. I didn't have time to be faffing around especially since around Christmastide, I tend to be out singing carols and in services and things. It tends to be one of the busiest times for me each year; it certainly has been the busiest time for me this year. After nine months of downtime, it's been hard for me to be adjusted to this level of activity again, and I certainly wouldn't have time to sit at FL ironing out the project any further than I currently have -- I'm certainly not risking even more unwarranted pitch changes, not now.


However -- I do not feel bitter about the song. I feel immense joy and anticipation. My heart beats high like the drums in that piece. I look forward to sharing that joy with you all tomorrow. I will update, of course, with a new FP post when it releases.


I am a drummer, I am a composer, I am an arranger, I am a vocalist. I share all these parts of me with you tomorrow. It is my hope that I'll actually wake in time to release this; I plan on releasing the Carol of the Drum in the small hours, EST. Until then, thank you for reading -- and to those of you who anticipate this carol, I hope that your hearts beat as loudly as mine with that anticipation. ^_^


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