Tuesday, 31 August 2010

Bad News Blogfest Update! - October 2nd

If you've just hopped out of Karen G's blog BBQ party - to cool off - welcome to my blog and why not party some more by joining this blogfest. It's a fun way to enjoy and share your writing!

Quick Update: this blogfest is extended to 3rd Oct due to Tessa's (see sidebar) also on 2nd Oct! 

I simply couldn't resist holding my own blogfest!

I've enjoyed participating in wonderful blogfests, have met fabulous fellow writers and this is my way of saying thanks to all those who have already held a blogfest.
I think it's fair to say we've all experimented in writing out of our comfort zones in search of a genre that best suits our ideal for a successful novel, so why not for a blogfest!

There are no rules as such, the criteria that of "emotional impact"  

At some time or another, I expect you've all had to convey bad news to someone else, maybe to do with a pet, a relative, maybe even lover.  Hence, this "Bad News Blogfest" is not about personal misery, it is to be about a character receiving bad news! 

It can be written in any genre, any POV, any means of delivery i.e.  
letter, e-mail, text, phone, verbal, whatever, and up to 1000 words.

There are no prizes because I could not bear the idea of having to choose a winner!

You can sign up as soon as and I'll post a reminder a few days beforehand. Thanks for reading and I hope you'll join in this blogfest.

Monday, 30 August 2010

Fairy Tale Blogfest - Sexy innuendo!

OMG, I'm a real late entrant to this blogfest kindly hosted by Emily White  and to see more of the entries go here

Little Red Riding and Hoodie Wolf - A Wicked Fairy Tale!

If you don't like sexy innuendo in a story read no further!

‘Quit doing that,’ snapped Red Riding, removing a hand from her right breast.’

Button’s laughed, his tunic fully unbuttoned, trouser zip at half-mast. ‘What’s your problem?’

‘Like Cinders, I got standards above my station . . . so grandma tells me. And she says if I want a rich dude for a husband I gotta stay a virgin.’

Zipped up, rejection apparent, Buttons got to his feet. ‘Cinders is no virgin.’

Astonished, Red Riding looked up at him. ‘What? But she’s all grimy, who’d . . . Well, you know what I mean.’

Buttons grinned.

‘You! She did it with you?’

He held out his hand. Red Riding reached for it and he hauled her to her feet.

‘I can’t believe Cinders would do that, not with you, not when Prince Charming has decreed he’s going to marry the mystery girl who ran away from the ball. And we know it was Cinders, she told us all about the fairy godmother.

‘Yeh, but we did it, you know, before she went to the ball. She was all upset and I set to comforting her, like.’


‘Yeh, well, let’s just say we were getting real down and dirty, and poof, all of a sudden ruddy fairy dust filled the room and next thing I knew I was on my arse in the corner of the room. And worse, this big fat fairy was where I’d been standing. She took one look at Cinders sat on the table skirt around her waist, tut-tutted and said “Naughty girl, I’ve got you booked for tonight. You’re to attend Prince Charming’s ball.” Old fairy godmother waved her wand a few times and that were that, Cinders were dressed to kill and a ruddy great stretch-limo materialised outside and off she tottered on glass stilettos.’

‘And we all know what happened, stupid wench.’ Red Riding brushed herself down making sure no telltale hay remained on her red cloak. ‘Right, I’m off now. Promised I’d drop in on grandma.’

The old witch hasn’t choked on a kid bone yet, then?’

‘Of course not, and still baking gingerbread men, and her stew pot is always full of juicy meat.’

Button’s strode to his motorbike, asked, ‘Wanna lift?’

‘Nah, I’ll walk, it’s not far.’

Button’s rode off and Red Riding picked up her basket of super-market goodies and started walking.

She’d gone a few yards when a middle-aged grey-haired guy in a hoodie and jog-pants came up from behind, and said, ‘Hey pretty little thing, you shouldn’t be out here all alone, want company?’

‘Ummm, no thanks,’ came her reply.

He jogged on.

She thought no more about him until she turned along a woodland track, and there he was sat on the ground and seeming a little out of sorts.

‘You OK?’ she tendered, placing a hand on his shoulder.

She hadn’t noticed before, but he sure had a hairy chest, and big bold eyes, eyes of a hunting man: mean face, and prominent nose with it.

‘Do you think you could give me a shoulder to lean on?’ he asked.

‘Sure,’ she replied, helping him to his feet.’

‘You’re new hereabouts, right?’ she asked.

‘Yeh, names Wolf, I bought the cottage in the woods.’

‘Grandma never told mom she’d sold up and moved out.’

He chuckled, and something about his chuckle caused her blood to chill.

‘So how long you been there?’

‘Couple of days,’ replied Wolf.

‘Oh, well, I’ll help you to the cottage, and perhaps you wouldn’t mind if I had a drink before I set off back home to tell my mom the news about grandma.’

‘No, I sure look forward to you’re coming inside my new home.’

They walked on, and soon came to the cottage. Only it wasn’t a cottage any longer. It was a huge mansion house.

‘What happened to the cottage?’

Wolf grinned, and as good as bundled her through a huge oak door. ‘Welcome to Wolf Hall.’

Red Riding looked all around. It was beautiful, not only palatial it smacked of money.

‘You’re a rich dude by all accounts!’

‘Yeah,’ he said, plying the basket from her fingers, and then sliding red cloak from her shoulders.

She glanced down at her skimpy dress. ‘A bit short, isn’t it?’

‘Good on the eyes, sweet cheeks.’

She smiled for she quite liked him, really, despite his wrinkly face and grey hair. He had a fabulous house, and well, what the hell if he fancied her, he had what Button’s could only dream of if ever he won the lottery.

She glanced up at a portrait on the wall. ‘Are pronounced noses a family trait?’

‘Yeah’, he replied, catching up her hand. ‘Sort of good for smelling out tasty morsels like you, and while you’re here, come and see the upper floor.’

She giggled, aware he had a wide mouth and big lolling tongue when he smiled, his eyes brighter than before and finger nails beautifully manicured.

‘No need to drool,’ she said, as he leaned forward and placed a kiss on her lips.

He held her hand in a vicelike grip. ‘Ah, but you like the look of my tongue, right?’

‘I hadn’t noticed,’ she fibbed.

He led off. ‘I know what you want, and I’m more than happy to give it to you, but first, you gotta let me show you something that’ll blow your mind.’

She hoped so, oh how she hoped so: a diamond bracelet, perhaps.

She thought not when he threw her at the bed and leapt on top of her.

It was too late, too late, too late.

The room was piled high with stiletto-heeled shoes.

‘Prince Charming,’ she said, mere whisper, ‘in disguise?’

‘Nah, he’ll be along later. I’m Dandini. See we got this thing going. He holds a ball to get us a chick for the night, only Cinders gave him the slip, and I do fancy dress costume when things don’t go to plan.’

‘And me being Red Riding, you came as Mr Wolf.’

‘Yeah, that about sums it up.’

She giggled. So eat me all up Mr Wolf!

Don't get me wrong but I've always thought there was deeper meaning to this tale. The Wolf representing a mature male initiating a young teen to womanhood, hence red cloak, grey (wolf), salivating predator, and apparently the red cloak only came into being in the Brothers' Grimm fairytales, and two men writing fairytales about pretty little girls?  ;)
What deeper meaning can be drawn from other such fairy tales of young single girls?    

Friday, 27 August 2010

Word Painting Blogfest - Hosted by Dawn Embers!

Many thanks to Dawn for hosting this blogfest and for thinking up such a good subject.
To see entries by other participants go here.

The essence of this blogest is to paint a picture with words! I've still cheated with a couple of pics, but I just love old novels where pics were included: earlier books with etchings, and later colour prints.

Brief: this is the opening scene to a re-union romance!

Cacophony of sound, milling people and overwhelming array of perfumes became intolerable. The stifling heat inside the marquee unbearable. She felt sick, quite sick. If she didn’t get out of there immediately she believed she might indeed throw up.

She hitched up the front of her bridesmaid gown and made a dash for the exit. A moment alone was all she needed, a moment of respite from the senses feeling as though bombarded with too much information. And of course those blue-grey eyes, those teasing eyes she’d thought never to see again, and that oh so damned handsome face.

As she stepped outside the vast canvas structure a lazy evening breeze whispered across her face. It was refreshingly cool as though chilled by the nearby ornamental lake and dark wooded island at its centre.

Musky scent of fern and fungi wafted on the ether, blotting out the heady aroma of manufactured perfumery.

The further she strolled away from the marquee and the noisy chatter the more remoteness enveloped, and her eyes readjusted to gentleness of twilight; movement of the air all the while teasing and ruffling the frills of her chiffon gown.

She strolled past tables and chairs arranged in groups on the lawn, where other wedding guests too had earlier sought respite from the oppressive atmosphere of the marquee. The elder fraternity had already retreated to the terrace at the mansion house. Its Tudor heritage as good as mocking the grotesque modern monstrosity ensconced on its emerald lawn, yet quietness of incoming night seeming to lull the ancient building into acceptance of temporary intrusion.

She paused inhaled sweet essence of wild flowers bordering the lakeside feeling happy in heart her best friend’s wedding had passed without untoward glitches to mar the day. The same could not be said for herself.

Why had she reacted so badly to kiss on bare shoulder?

She hadn’t seen Luc in eight months, and had had no idea he was standing in as best man, or that the bridegroom’s brother had fallen from his horse days beforehand and unable to carry out his official duties. Had Luc been present as mere guest, she could have avoided him so much easier. But no, he had to be in the bridal party.

Was Luc’s kiss meant as a sign that he was still interested, or big-tease payback?

One week of skiing together, a day of terror, and one night of passion and then . . .

Not that it was really his fault she’d run away from the horror and destruction of that terrible avalanche in Austria, nor the fearful nightmare that occurred that night. But, if he hadn’t said what he had the next evening she might have stayed on at least until the end of her holiday. Worse, the very morning she’d set out to leave the hotel, unseen, there he was returning from an early-morning ski run.

Caught in the act of running she’d felt embarrassed, and he’d just stood and watched her go without a word passing between them. What else had she expected?

Had he felt rejected and pride prevented him from making a move, or was it because he hadn’t given a damn that he’d tilted the axis of her singleton existence and stolen her heart?

She sensed a presence approaching from behind, half fearful it might be Luc, but it wasn’t.’

‘What are you doing out here all alone?’ enquired Sarah Gordon, fellow bridesmaid.

No way could Tori Bellamy bear to reveal true thoughts, and said, ‘Enjoying the evening air, that’s all.’ She drew a deep breath. ‘It’s an Indian summer, apparently, according to meteorologists at The Met Office, albeit the first day of October.’

‘What brought that to mind,’ enquired Sarah, laughing.

‘Cloudless sky of blue, all day, the sun now setting behind tree-covered island, people dancing to a romantic love song in floral bedecked marquee, and you ask what brought the weather to mind? Imagine what this lawn would be like if it had rained.’

‘I suppose I have to agree,’ batted Sarah, a wicked smirk, ‘but a marquee instead of a decent hotel for the reception?’

‘What could be better than the wedding in that gorgeous little church in the village, and then grand reception here at the manor house?’ mooted Tori.

‘Don’t be so prickly,’ said Sarah, fanning her face with a serviette. ‘Who was it moaned, earlier, about the temperature inside the marquee rising to tropical levels, heat wise?’

Tori smiled, glanced back at the marquee, noted guests rushing back from the house to the canvas interior. ‘At least the freelance-waiting staff are setting to with rolling up the lower sides now, so hopefully it’ll soon start cooling down a little.’

The chords of a romantic waltz reaching its finale drifted across the meadows.

‘Oh blast, declared Sarah, glancing at her watch, ‘the bridal departure’s imminent.’

‘Oh hell, and if we miss Paula’s throwing of the bouquet she’ll never forgive us,’ returned Tori, sense of queasiness having thankfully disappeared.

They both hitched up their skirts and ran.

Cooler air had already begun wafting through the marquee, and revelling in their freedom from official duties she and Sarah scooped up a glass of champagne as they passed a waiter with loaded tray.

As they sipped the pink champagne their attention centred on the happy couple dancing mid-floor, Sarah said, ‘Well, what a fantastic day it’s been, and Paula’s wedding dress is sooo her mother.’ She giggled a little. ‘I never thought all three of us would end up looking like extras for an epic American Civil War drama.’

‘Me neither,’ said Tori, ‘but hey, it’s only for one day, and Paula did warn us our gowns were somewhat frivolous and that we’d probably hate them when we finally got to see them.’

‘I suppose we should have guessed, being as Mrs Johnson’s all-time favourite movie is Gone With The Wind.’

Tori laughed. ‘And the men got off light with mere grey top hats and tails.’

Sarah nudged Tori’s elbow, and giggled. ‘Maybe, but Mrs J even got a blue-eyed dark-haired handsome Rhett Butler to turn up just for you.’

A long pause ensued, and at no response to mention of Rhett Butler, Sarah glanced at Tori, and asked, ‘It wasn’t all that bad, surely, his kissing you on the shoulder?’

Tori Bellamy agreed, the day had been perfect for their friend Paula’s big day, so too for the bride’s mum and dad, and for everyone else, but Luc kissing her shoulder was too much.


That's it - my contribution. It was taken from a novel of which I posted snippets from before, way back when I first set up the blog (a novel rejected by HM&B).

Friday, 20 August 2010

Day 2 - Revealing Character Identity!

Meet Suzanne, a slim 5' 7" honey blonde, moss green-eyes, a natural beauty who loves horses, runs a successful advertising agency, and at present, doubting the sanity of impending marriage to childhood companion - now a cavalry officer in the Blues and Royals ( Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth IIs Household Cavalry).

Suzanne is that of bubbly mature thinking adult, hates rows and will stand off from confrontation, can't abide hurting anyone in a verbal sense, wouldn't dream of lashing out unless provoked in witnessing animal cruelty, outwardly passionate about many things, and sensitive to others needs when most in need herself for a little TLC.

For those interested in Captain Nick Dulverton: he's 6' 3", a romantic at heart, cool-headed in the face of adversity ie; war situations and, vengeful women who haven't managed to get him to the alter. He's a chivalrous officer duty bound not only to Queen and Country, he has committments to his inheritance: the latter an emotional pull on his conscience in maintaining the country estate for future generations of the Dulverton family.


Hi Girls,

Thanks so much for dropping by to comment!

This has been such a fun blogfest, and not easy for Jen to coordinate with a day 1 and day 2, especially given that across the various time zones around the planet some people have retired to bed on day 1 others just waking to morning coffee.

Without naming names those who came closest to describing Suzanne can see for themselves how close, but three closer and one as good as spot on!

Thursday, 19 August 2010

"Guess That Character" Blogfest - Day 1

"The Guess That Character Blogfest" is kindly hosted by Jennifer, and to see the list of participants go to:  Jennifer Daiker

Today 19th guess the character image/personality!
Day 2 the 20th come back for the big reveal of pic and personality profile!

OK, so I'm hooked on blogfests! It's fun though, and one gets to read stunning writing posted by other participants.

This particular snippet may not fit with what’s expected of the “Guess the Character Blogfest” but short of 1st person narrative (which is not my medium of writing) this is the best I could come up with. It’s taken from a novel written a few years back and as yet, it has never graced a publisher submission desk. The only clue to the heroine: her name!

She slid from the saddle, and ran the nearside stirrup iron up the leathers. Her favoured horse received a loving stroke to neck as she pressed her brow to his shoulder; sense of desperation gripping her.

“Two months Jake, and I will have committed myself to Lieutenant Philip Pembrey. Oh God, two months and I will have said I do and, for better for worse I’ll be trapped.’

She heard footsteps, Maggie’s voice echoing her thoughts as the other woman attended to the offside stirrup. ‘And, it’s not what you want, is it?’

Maggie, her parents' head groom landed a hefty pat to Jake’s flank in passing and came round to unbuckle his girth.

Suzanne lifted her head, air of frustration mingling with despair. ‘I feel as though I’ve been bamboozled into agreeing to marry Phil, like his and my parents arranged it when we were kids. Then last year him and my parents waiting on the right moment to spring it on me, and yes, I know I sort of got caught up in the moment of the engagement party, but now . . . I’m seriously having doubts. As kids we had horses in common, and sort of grew up loving each other, but lately I’ve realised we’re worlds apart in what we want out of life. Phil doesn’t want kids, ever, and I do, eventually.’

Maggie swept a stray strand of ash-blonde hair from her eyes and laughed. ‘Yes, well, you’ve got two choices as I see it. End it now and save face as best you can, or do as I did and panic on the day.’ She hauled the saddle from Jake’s back. ‘I was halfway down the aisle before I realised I couldn’t go through with the wifely mother thingy.’ She swung the saddle to her left arm, and let slip a smile. ‘Too independent is me and always will be, and give me a horse any day over a man. ’

As Suzanne led Jake to his loosebox, she glanced back at Maggie. ‘Did you regret it, afterwards?’

Awaiting Jake’s bridle Maggie’s sky-blue eyes sparkled with mischief, her pixie face aglow as she replied, ‘Nah, but did feel a little sorry for Bruce when I’d finally put a couple of hundred miles between me and him.’

‘I don’t think I could be that cruel, to just up and run. Beside that, wedding presents have already started to arrive. And of course, dad’s stomped up oodles of dosh already, and mum, well, she’d sure to go apoplectic if I announced the wedding off because I don’t love Phil as I should, that I think of him as a best friend.’

‘What of Phil? I mean, he’s always struck me as having a bit of a wandering eye.’ Maggie winced. ‘Sorry, that was out of order.’

‘Down your cleavage, right?’ quizzed Suzanne, her hand to Jake’s muzzle in readiness to prevent the bit clanging his teeth whilst slipping the bridle from his head.

‘Well yeah, and he’s a bit of a bum pincher, too. I’ve never understood that, seeing as you’re so, so beautiful and well . . . You know what I mean.’

‘Grown up, and that’s it, that’s what’s wrong with Phil. He’s so juvenile, and every damn thing is one big joke to him. Don’t get me wrong I love him to bits as I probably would have a brother if I’d had one, and to be honest making love with Phil feels akin to incest, and I think he feels much the same about that too. In fact, I think he’s just going through the motions of marriage to please his parents, that he’s no more in love with me than I for him.’

Maggie rested the bridle from Suzanne’s clutches. ‘Tell you what, your parents are out, so go make a pot of coffee and I’ll join you as soon as I’ve racked Jake some fresh hay. I have an idea that might help in slipping Phil’s marital noose, and sort your problem big time.’

Suzanne made off toward the house, dumping her riding gear along with boots in the utility room en route to kitchen.

What on earth had Maggie in mind?

Whatever, Suzanne Barton had an up and coming business, which could more than sustain her present lifestyle and keep her horses independent of her parents generous stable facility, that is, if the wedding was called off and they saw fit to explode and make her life impossible. That aside, what was so different in her setting up home alone as opposed to that of setting up home with Phil?

Once in the kitchen she set about making coffee. All of several minutes later and coffee brewing she heard a motor pull into the yard. Her heart plummeted. Already expecting Phil sometime that morning she was surprised at no blasting of the car horn as was his annoying habit on arrival.

She moved to the window, and there in the yard was a dark blue soft-top limousine; semi stranger in the driving seat. After all, she’d seen him before at a distant in full ceremonial uniform but Phil had never introduced her to his senior officer.

The driver door opened, the semi stranger sporting reflective shades alighting with grace and ease likened to that of a warrior at play. He glanced around, leaned against his car and drew a cell phone from his pocket. Instinct caused her to back away from the window, but she continued watching him make take incoming call, wondering, speculating, even sensed a flush to her cheeks. The call at end, the cell phone disappeared to pocket and he removed his shades. He glanced directly at the kitchen window as though aware of a presence.

It was rude to have stayed in the shadows watching him, but she felt if she moved the magic of the moment would be lost. What was it about him that drew the eye? Not just his deadly handsome visage . . .it was fluid movement in body language. And, oh God, he was coming to the door.

She flew into the back corridor fluffing riding-hat flattened hair, and glancing in the mirror in passing her heart dived. Her makeup was basic at best, her jodhpurs grimy, no bra and a white based T-shirt . . . Oh no . . . she had to be wearing that one didn’t she like some big kid: a blasted tiger face in bold black print and its eyes directly over her nipples.

Nonetheless she opened the door left ajar.

The silence was deafening, eye contact magnetic and her tongue a solid weight; she immediate thankful of his breaking through seeming invisible barrier.

‘Captain Dulverton, Nick Dulverton, and I’m guessing Suzanne?’

His hand came at her and in auto-response mode she slid her fingers across its palm.

His grip firm, hand warm, breath caught in her throat words eluding her.

His smile disarming too, his timbre of voice deep and mellow as he again tendered verbal response from her. ‘Phil will be along later. He had something to do en route, and I’m too early by all accounts.’ A sensual vibrating chuckle rumbled from the depths of his heavenly body. ‘You had no idea I’d been invited down for the weekend, right?’

‘Umm, no, but I’m guessing my parents are expecting you.’

He released his grip, and she wished he hadn’t as her hand slid away from his. There was something of a rock about him. Hidden strength within his slim appearance, a man one could depend upon and honourable with it.

‘I’m to be Phil’s best man, if that helps in explaining my standing on your doorstep.’

‘It’s typical of Phil and my parents to keep me in the dark, inclusive of your arriving now, when . . .’ She drew breath, her heart all a flutter her brain tripping on every nuance of movement for his part, his eyes all the while searching hers as though he reading her every thought. ‘I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to sound like you’re not welcome. It’s just that I’m always the last to know what is scheduled around here.’

She’d already sensed appraisal of her plight, her face flushed, incoherent air about her, and his blue eyes not once having left hers, his words dancing provocative off tongue.

‘If it would help I could go away and come back later, when Phil’s here.’

‘No, absolutely not, you’re here now and I’ve just made some coffee, and I must be sounding an ungracious host, seeing as I’m the prospective bride.’ She stepped back allowing access to the house, anything to escape his intense scrutiny. ‘Please . . . do come in.’

‘Delicious aroma.’ he said, stepping close whilst gesturing her onward. ‘After you.’ She turned and led off, and the instant he said, ‘Chanel,’ sniffed the air and followed with, ‘number five, if I’m not mistaken, Cinderella,’ threw her off kilter.

OK: what of Suzanne?

Saturday, 14 August 2010

Weather Blogfest!

Weather Blogfest kindly hosted by Nick.
To see more entries to the funtime blogfest go to  Nick.

The following is snippet taken from previously published novel (mine), the female protagonist is about to post a Dear John Letter to long-standing lover: any mistakes bear with me - I copy-typed it from book. You will be reading the opening to the book - now out of print!

It was absolutely foul weather but it had to be done. The letter had to be posted before the four o’clock afternoon collection, and the post box was only a couple of hundred yards from the cottage.

Mercedes stepped under the porch and closed the door, the wind so strong she had to literally tug at the handle to secure it on its latch.

Was it just her imagination or had the temperature plunged a degree or two?

She turned up the collar of her raincoat, umbrella out of the equation due to unrelenting gale force wind. She shivered a little, driving rain penetrating the porch, the wind whipping at loose titian-coloured pre-Raphaelite curls already turning to bedraggled dripping coils. She loved Cornwall, loved her cliff-top cottage. But oh, how she hated rain.

Stepping out from the porch took courage; needles a better description to that which the gods had seen fit to throw down today of all days, the day she’d written the letter. The letter in her pocket that she wanted winging its way to London ASAP.

It wouldn’t have been fair to leave a voicemail message on his cell-phone saying, sorry darling, have decided I’m cutting loose. Goodbye. In any case he would have picked up the call if not in some blasted meeting, and would have promptly laughed and told her to stay put. That he’d come down to the cottage and they’d talk things through. No, she couldn’t let that happen because he’d talk her round, and then nothing would change.

She delved her hands in her pockets, her fingers already turning blue. Only several paces from the cottage, she sensed iced water trickling down the inside of her collar, but needs must when the devil rides. She was feeling more rat-devil than devil woman in telling Guy she couldn’t go on as they were.

She didn’t want marriage for the moment, was that so wrong?

In his mind they were married as good as, his argument being; so why not slot the rings, say I do, and do the marriage bed as man and wife.

He’d suddenly become all protective and possessive, and a downright pain at social gatherings. She annoyed to extent in wary of his arm constantly about her waist or that of her hand firmly clasped in his. It felt like he didn’t trust her in the company of other men, that flirting with other women was perfectly acceptable for him but similar for her utterly taboo.

Oh hell, she was right, the barometer must have dived by now because the rain had turned to iced beads of hail hammering at her head and pinging off her shoulders. She was soaked and freezing cold, but she could just make out the scarlet red glow of the post box nestling in its ivy-clad wall ahead of her.

A few more paces and the deed would be done, the wind having suddenly eased.

Upon reaching the post box she stood staring at it, the letter brushing against her fingers in pocket. All the while iced water tumbled drom her hair and over her face and trickled down neck. It was a now or never situation. Post the letter and be done, or turn around, retreat to the cottage and fling letter and envelope on the fire.

She drew a deep breath steeling her self as she plucked the envelope from her pocket and placed it in the gaping mouth of the red box. At that very instant lightning streaked through the gunmetal clouds as though a message from the gods: don’t do it, you’ll regret it.

Oh hell, she felt in two-minds. In one she was breaking free, in the other she would miss him terribly.

A loud clap of thunder overhead shook the ground beneath her feet and startled she let slip the envelope. It was irretrievable, swallowed whole. It was done now, no going back and burning the letter and carrying on as if everything was all right. The words were written. It was in black and white: I don’t love you any more. Or at least, she’d as good as said that by wanting out of the relationship, yet in reality still in love with him.

She would be cut adrift within a day: once he'd read the letter.

After all, what man would ignore what she'd written and not take it as gospel?

Icy coldness gripped her from within. The hail had ceased, beams of sunlight casting over the sea and cliffs.

Which of the two weather systems heralded her fate?

She glanced toward Bodmin Moor.

It as always towering majestic, today menacing dark beneath the blue-black thunderous mass rolling on relentless over heath and bog much like waves over massive rocks.

A light breeze picked up, the warmth from the sun stark in contrast to the freezing conditions moments beforehand. She turned about and strolled away from the post box, appreciative of sun on her back. She stripped off her raincoat and slung it over her arm, the sun bearing hot the breeze warm as she tossed her hair over one shoulder and leaned forward. She rung water from her tresses and shook it free feeling akin to wet dog though much sweeter smelling thank goodness.

At least she was hundreds of miles from London. And, thankfuly Guy hated the four-hour plus drive to the cottage so probably enough to deter any thoughts of his tipping the letter on its head by turning up unannounced and declaring he hadn’t received it. Which was more than possible if he was in one of those damned insufferably arrogant moods of his, when nothing and nobody could put him off something he wanted and wanted now.

He hadn’t as yet rung on the house phone or via her cell phone, not since her arrival twenty-four hours earlier, and he must have returned from his business trip to Manchester by now.

It was, to say the least, ominously quiet on the Guy front.

Half way back to the cottage and negotiating a sharp bend she heard the sound of a powerful motor car approaching from her rear. It was travelling far too fast along the single-track narrow country lane. As it careered around the bend she threw herself at the steep grassy bank head plunged into the hedge and received deluge of water from huge puddle. Car brakes squealed and tyres skidded as the vehicle came to an abrupt emergency halt not too far distant from where she stood trembling from the shock of it all.

Why had the gods saved her?

And, who was this idiot in a brand spanking new BMW?

Saturday, 7 August 2010

High Drama Blogfest!

Well, here it is, the awaited blogfest kindly hosted by D.L. Hammons.

Due to three sword fights in the last Blogfest I abandoned original snippet destined for this page -as taken from historical novel set period of English Civil War 1642-1649.

Instead I've selected a rather more emotional and dramatic scene in which item of clothing implies betrayal and intrigue afoot, the heroine (bride to be) in dire trouble . . .

Please note the family has been torn apart by the Civil War. Lord William is a Cavalier (Royalist)officer, his son a Parliamentarian officer. His lordship's ward and betrothed is a lady of rank albeit orphaned when a child and no relative of his lordship - she at one time madly in love with his lordship's son! 

As Anna returned to Axebury Hall she felt spots of rain on face and set Megan to a fair trot along the driveway; her thoughts hanging heavy upon breakfast taken in her room. The unruly behaviour heard below stairs throughout wholly indicative of men playing card games and laying bets upon the outcome.

Fed up with their raucous laughter and drunken giggles she’d taken to horse and countryside, and now nearing the end of her ride she rounded the corner of the mews to see horses saddled ready to leave.

A groom stepped forward to take Megan's reins, and Anna slid from saddle to mounting block and asked, ‘Who pray will be taking leave of the house?’

‘The prince ‘n’ all,’ replied the groom.

Anna rushed into the hallway, quite wondering why the gentlemen were leaving when the wedding was on the morrow. As she made her way to the library Prince Rupert stepped forth, his face rigid unsmiling, his tone matter of fact.

‘I bid you farewell.’ With that he brushed past her, the men assembled around the table at breakfast following in his path, until one of their number paused and most formal declared, ‘Lord William awaits your presence in the library.’

She walked into the library suspecting something amiss, but when her eyes fell upon her blooded gown on the floor she feared the worst. His lordship was sitting in a chair near vast mirror smoking pipe in hand. Something in his look as he spied her enter caused her to turn and attempt to flee, but he was on his feet in an instant the pipe cast to the floor.

Lord William caught her arm, her flight halted mid-step. ‘I’ll have you a Royalist whore before I’ll have you a Parliamentarian’s piece.’

His timbre of voice most threatening, Anna winced, his grip on her arm painful yet nothing compared to the evil glint in his eyes.

‘I’ve done nothing wrong,’ she said, defiant as ever, ‘and Morton’s your son.’

‘Son,’ railed William Gantry, dragging her across the room, ‘son? He’s no son of mine.’

‘If not yours, whose?’ she challenged, not for one minute believing Arabella, his late wife, would have had another man. ‘He has his mother’s eyes, and your hair, your body, your looks.’

Oh god, Lord Gantry was Morton as he would be in years to come. Why had she not seen that before?

‘Morton was wounded and needed help, that’s all.’

Her benefactor ignored her, swinging the door wide and bundling her through and into the grand hall. Its panelled walls seemed as though closing in about her, his lordship’s grip upon her unrelenting and painful. She very nearly tripped, her midnight blue velvet and brocade gown catching beneath her feet.

‘You don’t have to haul me around like an animal, I’ll do your bidding, whatever that may be,’ she said, trying to keep abreast of him.

‘Do my bidding eh?’ He chuckled, a look on his face the like she’d never seen before. It was distasteful touching treacherous intent. ‘I’ve loved you, provided for you, and you whore yourself to Morton.’

‘That’s not true. I’ve loved you always, and respected you for taking me in and providing me with a caring and loving home. I am your betrothed, why would I betray you?’

She seriously feared his intentions, and his sudden desire to drag her up the staircase. How he’d found out about her gown in the trunk was mortifying, and he was right about one thing, she did love Morton, had always loved him as she loved his lordship but had never told anyone not even Morton himself. If Morton had declared the same interest in her as his father she would have run away to the Lady Georgina’s and stayed there, waiting on Morton’s return.

Anna sensed danger in Lord Gantry’s anger. Dreadful thoughts came to mind and caused her to lash out at her lord. She pummelled his arm trying to force him to let go his fearsome grip.

He resisted her every strike whilst ascending the staircase, his superior strength keeping her firmly within his grasp. At the top she again attempted to break free: to no avail.

Dragged to the late Lady Arabella’s room, a sumptuous four-poster bed before them, he threw her at it, onto it, and still keeping hold of her arm he pinned her wrists together and held her down.

‘You fancy yourself a Parliamentarian whore,’ he said, as the sound of horses leaving the mews echoed through the window, ‘then I’ll show you what a Parliamentarian whore does for a Cavalier.’

Anna writhed with every intention of escaping his clutches, but he held her fast and straddled her thighs, her skirts undisturbed.

Helpless and unable to escape, she realised his intention, and said, ‘But my lord. I swear, swear Morton was injured, needing attention to his wound. That is all.’

It was as though his rage was all consuming, her words falling upon deaf ears as he fumbled in the crotch of his silk breeches.

‘My lord, I will not be treated like a whore.’ she said, fearing the worst. ‘I love you, and want you, and I have not betrayed you.’ Tears welled, flowed, and she felt it imperative to defend her honour. ‘I have not bedded down with Morton.’

He released his grip upon her wrists. ‘Prove me wrong in my assumptions of your betraying me as Arabella did before you.’

‘I would not, could not betray you my lord.’

Even now despite his anger and her fear of consequences unknown she felt compelled to prove her love for him. Strange as it was to feel pressured into proving herself, lips quivering and mind in state of flux, she could not bring herself to do his bidding. She was not a Parliamentarian’s piece, would not be treated as a whore and would have him apologise or she would leave Axebury Hall and go to Morton at Knoll House as soon as able.

Ps: For those of you that I haven't gotten to yet, (half) I'll be with you tomorrow. Promise!

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

I've been Blog-tagged to reveal my worst asset - handwriting!

Unfortunately, as L'Aussie said: there's always rules!
Here is what I and everyone else ' who've participated in the fun (and you if I tag you) have had to hand write:

1. Your name/Blog's name

2. Are you right-handed or left-handed?

3. What are your favorite letters to write?

4. What are your least favourite letters to write?

5. Write: "The quick, brown fox jumps over the lazy dog."


7. Your favorite song lyrics are?

8. Make sure you tag 7 people to join in on the fun. =)

9. Tickle your fancy and add a special quip for us to enjoy. =)

Lead me not into temptation . . . I can find my own way there. ;)

The last 5 people I tagged for a blogger award only three took up the award!
Hence I'm reluctant to tag seven for a handwriting challenge, so cheating here: if you're reading this and game to play along go for it and spread joy with a quip at least!