Going Home

I haven’t posted a short story in a while, so I thought you might like this one.  My large extended family lives on each side of the Atlantic and even after all the years, there is still a fine thread which goes back and forth across the ocean joining us together.

My Aunt Jean was one of my grandfather’s many sisters, she followed a brother and a sister to Canada in the 1920s. She always said you have to go back before you really know where you belong. Her life in Canada was the subject of many, many family stories, some of which might possibly have been true.

The picture is because “moose in the lake” was one of my favourite of all those stories, along with black bears in the trash bins and mistaking a skunk and babies for the family black and white cat and her kittens.

 Going Home

The wind ripped the handkerchief she had been waving from her fingers and carried off high above the liner’s bows.

Despite the cold she could not bring herself to go below, she stood by the rail and watched the shore slipped further and further away as the evening tide carrying them out. She knew when she came on deck tomorrow green waters would have turned to blue and the land would be a memory.

She had always promised herself she would go home, go back to her mother and all her brothers and sisters. Every part of her had ached for the familiar faces and familiar places of home.

Eventually she could bear the aching need no longer and she had packed her case and fled back to the land of her birth.

Once there, softly and quietly the familiar had wrapped itself about her. Remembered sights and smells and sounds had woven in and out of her senses, drawing her back to the places she had left when she had begun her great adventure.

She had come home and home had welcomed her with open arms, but now she was leaving them again, crossing back over the great ocean.

As the light finally faded and she could no longer see the dark shadow of the land, her thoughts turned to the wooden cabin by the lake.

The fruit harvest would over and soon the trees would blaze with the colours of autumn, heralding the promise of the long white winter to come.

He would be there, waiting.

When she left, she believed she was going back to where she belonged, but now the ship was carrying her back to him and to the land she knew she would now forever more call home.

 © Bev Allen 2015

 

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Author Torture 2

Today’s author for torture is Richard Rhys Jones, author of such warm cosy reads as “Division of the Damned” and “The Sisterhood of the Serpent”.

Go here to get the full down load.

http://divisionofthedamned.blogspot.co.uk/p/about-me.html

Richard (Reggie to his mates) is one of my oldest writing buddies, so I have no conscience about throwing into my interrogation chamber.

You are marooned on a desert island and find a magic lamp. You get the traditional three wishes, but keep in mind I’m not letting you off the island, so don’t start pleading or trying to escape. You can only have one practical item, other people will not be allowed and will be taken away and dumped on an island far, far away and the wish forfeited. Smut is permitted if it makes me laugh.

Firstly, hiya Bev 😀

Right, to business. First item would have to be a computer of some sort, with solar charged batteries. It’s all very well being cast away with nothing to do, and after the first year of sunning myself in the shade, (I’m ginger, we don’t do sun), barbequing the rations I cleverly salvaged, drinking the barrels of beer I bartered for pretty seashells from some passing pirates, and generally recouping my strength, I reckon I’ll be good to start writing again.

Secondly some sort of satellite television set up, with Sky Sports etcetera.

I mean roughing it is one thing, but missing the footy, rugby or boxing..? Or even game of Thrones, Vikings and Stranger Things!!!

Hello? Seriously?

Oh come on, I’m stranded on a desert island, not cast down to the fiery depths of hell to repent my sins for all of eternity!!

Thirdly I’d need some form of tin opener. A General Purpose Machine Gun would do, with about 20,000 rounds and the necessary servicing equipment and oils.

Your library is on fire and you’re only going to be able to save three books, name them. And as your own are save on the memory stick in your dressing gown pocket, the books in question will have to be someone else’s work J

Credit will not be given for naming my books, but there may be cake.

Only three?

That’s inhuman!! Have you no soul, woman?

Okay… sorry, this could take some time, I have to go look.

First book would have to be Necronomicon: The Best Weird Tales of H.P. Lovecraft. There’s something about how he writes that really clicks with me. Long winded, over the top prose, that dallies around with its message until you’re nigh on screaming at the page, “Get bloody well on with it!” is not my style, but I like it, strangely.

The Collected works of Bernard Cornwell, (HA! See what I did there? That’s how I tricked those witless pirates out of fifty barrels of Hobgoblin Real Ale for a handful of shells. I’m as cunning as a ninja fox with a degree in Blackadder quotes, and just as red). Bernard Cornwell is my fave author, I haven’t read one bad book with his name on it, and I’ve also tried to emulate him in my plot delivery, (i.e. Have the hero practically being hung, drawn and quartered before he’s saved… I hope I haven’t spoiled any of my books for anyone there?)

Finally, The Secrets of Castle Drakon, which sadly never made it to print, but holds a wealth of cool stories from writer friends I’m glad to say I’m still in contact with.

(As I am one of those cool writers, there will be cake, possibly Coffee and Walnut, but not Battenberg because I don’t like marzipan.)

 

 You are going to be hanged in the morning, what would your last meal be if money was no object? Please don’t ask for something which will take three years to grow or six days to cook, because at 6am the trap door will open under you.

Steak and chips, fifty litres of Hobgoblin or Bombardier. At a pinch, Pedigree.

 

Pets. While I agree that a cat or a dog or a guinea pig is probably best in the modern home, what, if anything, would you house if you had the chance. Points will be given for anything extinct, but not for anything mythical, because that would be cheating.

Okay, if the food and vet bills were covered, and he/she was house trained, a sabre toothed tiger. Seriously, how cool would it be to ride into work on one of those?

“By the power of Greyskull!” I’d shout at the boss, smashing his table in two with my sword to demand a long overdue pay rise. I’m smiling right now.

 

Driving. We all do it, we all bitch about the traffic and by and large most of us drive what we can afford, not what we would like. What would you like to drive, points will be deducted for excessive petrol head indulgence, I expect more imagination from an author, but will be added for greener alternatives.

This obviously excludes a desire for a red Ferrari, because if you don’t want one of those, you need help.

A 1972 Volkswagen Beetle convertible. I know it’s daft, but I really like them. I only used the date 1972 to show around which era of VW beetle I desired. They’re quirky, understated, reliable and born out of a time of strife, I make it sound like a Tolkien character don’t I? Well, that’s my choice, and a car I hope to purchase when the kids are not sucking our finances dry 😉

I’d sooner drive a Lada than a Ferrari.

 

Now from some “either or” questions, mainly because I like picking the eithers and the ors, but also because I like to see which of the lesser of two weevils you pick. (Small Jack Aubrey joke there, indulge me, I have these moments.)

Gouda or Gorgonzola?

Gouda. I despise smelly cheese.

Star Wars or Star Trek? (Careful here, much could depend on your pick)

Star Wars, but it’s close.

Lychee or kumquat?

Lychee.

Winnie the Pooh or Paddington?

Poohbear, the dude is so wise, or backward? I could never tell if I’m honest.

Whelk or Oyster?

Whelk. Whelks in a garlic sauce is incredibly tasty, actually… regardless of the fact it looks like a plate of dog vomit and baby aliens.

Vampires or Zombies?

Vampires, another close one though.

Laver bread or Hovis?

Hovis. Laver bread is yuck, and that’s coming from a proud Welshman.

Light sabre or phaser?

Phaser. I reckon I’d fail dismally wielding a light sabre.

 

Moving on…yes, I know the laver bread one was evil…What is your favourite book title? Pick one of your own and one by someone else. Mine are

“The Tattooed Tribes” and “Amazing Maisie and the Cold Porridge Brigade.”

And no, I didn’t just make the last one up.

A very obscure author by the name of David Evans once wrote a book called, “Does God speak through cats?”. That one tickled me. There are millions of joke book titles out there, but that one is a real book dealing with the authors awakening to the spirituality of his pet… madness.

The favourite title in my sparse library of publications is, “The Chronicles of Supernatural Warfare”. What we were thinking when Paul Rudd and myself christened that baby only Cthulhu knows?

Because you have been very good and not screamed all that much, you tell me what you are currently working on and when we can expect to see it in print.

At the moment, absolute squat.

I took a promotion two years ago and that seems to have squeezed any ounce of authorly inspiration out of me. I have bursts now and then, on Division of the Damned part 2 and another that’s way off the weirdness scale in plotlines, but nothing is constant. I don’t itch to prowl the keyboards and let my story-telling soul dribble out of my fingertips like I used to, sadly.

Whatever, things are looking up, and I reckon another couple of months will see me going back to it… I hope :/

Thank you for being a victim of my interrogation parlour. I hope you had a bit of fun.

With you Bev, always you kinky mare. x

Thanks for having me.

And thank you for playing, but I will get you for the “kinky mare” remarked. xx

 

“For I am Welsh, good my countryman”

Our furry friends #5

I have known of Vlad and Boris since they first moved in with Tina. The Diabolical Double Act are a source of endless amusement, but of course I don’t I have to live with them.

Cake & Quill

Today it’s Tina Rath’s turn, who tells us about a rather notorious pair of cats. Tina lives in London, as an actress, writer, story-teller, and Queen Victoria Lookalike. She’s also the Resident Poet of the Dracula Society.

Tina donated three poems and a short story to our brand-new anthology, Paws and Claws. Not surprisingly, all of them feature cats in one way or another.

*****

We called them Vlad and Boris – Vlad after Vladislavus Drakulya, sometimes called Vlad Tepes, and Boris for Boris Karloff. If we had got their little sister as well we were going to call her Doris (after Herod’s first wife). They are Mau/Bengal crosses, so they have the pretty silvery spotted fur of the Mau, and the Bengal temprament. And Bengals are well known as mad bustards. We were – after we got them – told about one pair who hollowed out the entire sofa…

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Weird and Wonderful

Not so long ago I went to see someone about my inner demons. To be honest, it was not a success, the demons had a lovely day out, released from the prison I try to keep them confined in. They raced up and down my memory paths gleefully shouting “remember this?” and it took me weeks to shove them back to where they belong.

I realise now that the best way to deal with them is to write them out. The biggest of the little buggers has been dealt with in a book I call “Jabin” which I will be re-releasing in a couple of months, but some of the lesser ones are trapped in my weird short stories.

Not all of them of course and I think I will need to write a lot more ofodd tales before I get shot of most of them.

That deals with “weird”, so what about “wonderful”. Well, wonderful is the memories I have built in the years of my marriage and of motherhood. Its been a wonder to me to see what a decent caring father can bring to the raising of decent caring kids. These memories are stuffed into “The Tattooed Tribes” ( as well as all my ecology ideals and worries) and they are also in “The Lord of the Faran Hills”, a completely new book which I will be bringing out just as soon as the beta reader and the editor stop laughing hysterics over the fluffs and typos. It is also stuffed with mercenaries, muskets and a delicious little bit of siege warfare which I spent two happy days war gaming…back to soldiers, I can help it, I have a deep seated affection for the military.

To be fair, you did already know I was a little bit around the bend, all I just did was confirms it.

Anyway, you can see some of my inner demons exposed in all their glory here

Amazon.co.uk

Amazon.com

And here

Amazon
Amazon UK

I love wolves and I love looking at the moon.