Monday, 5 September 2011

Platform-Building Campaign - Flash Fiction.

If you're here looking for Lady Gwen's Judge & Jury Blogest, it's directly below this Challenge.

Here we go with the first challenge set by Rachael Harrie

Mine's a contemporary piece!

The door swung open, as though beckoning her to greet the morn. Raw scent of man replaced by salty air drifted through her cliff-top cottage. He was gone, but he’d be back. They always came back if she wanted them to. 
   How strange, though, that the sound of the sea crashing on the cliffs seemed closer than usual, almost surreal, as though swirling beneath her. True enough, pilot officer Brett Master’s had made the ground move all right, and maybe this time she might hang around longer than just for the weekend. 
   She smiled, the local lovesick barmaid leapt to mind, whom, according to village gossip a bit of a witch on the side. Funny really, the silly girl had cast an evil eye in their direction and mouthed some whispered curse as they’d made to leave. They’d naturally laughed and left the pub arms about each other.
   She stretched cat-like, languidly slid from the bed and walked naked toward the door.
   The lawn, the road . . . What?
   The ground had moved: moved for real.
   She stood there, nothing beneath but swirling water, and Brett gone for good, no doubt about it.
   The cottage was teetering on the edge of the cliff, and suddenly the door swung shut behind her.  

To see entries by other participants go here.

Judge & Jury Blogfest!

This blogfest is hosted by the lovely Lady Gwen.

For this blogfest I've snatched two snippets from my latest historical romance novella:
The Highwayman's Mistress.

As you will gather there's a highwayman on the loose, and while Diamonta has it in mind Francois - her beloved -  might be a highwayman, doubt suddenly enters play! So, who do you think might be the robbing culprit who very nearly caused a Duchess to fall vagary to the faints, or is this a devious author's red-herring?   

“Diamonta, Diamonta,” squealed Leohne. “Mother has just returned from town, and you will never believe what has happened.”
    “Oh do stop dramatising and just tell me.”
    “Well, it seems a highwayman was shot today.”
   Her heart lurched. “Our highwayman?”
   “No one knows for sure. He was shot on the London road not far beyond Malmesbury.”
   “Killed?”  Oh God, please, let it not be Francois.
   “No, not dead. He escaped, but it was said he near fell from his horse so it was thought he was badly wounded.”
   Sense of nausea and dizziness overwhelmed her. She dared not stand, dared not display any sense of concern as to the highwayman’s welfare, yet her need to know finite details of the man’s escape a must.    “Who shot him, and which way did he go?”
   “In this direction, I suppose, because mother said a horseman rode past her carriage at the gallop and barely keeping to his saddle. It wasn’t until she reached town she discovered what had occurred a few miles ahead of her.”
   Oh Francois, what have you done?
   “Diamonta, are you all right, you’ve turned as white as the sheets on our beds.”
   “I have a bit of head pain, and need to go and lie down for a while.”


The grand masked ball at its peak she noted her mother now in conversation with Lady Fortnum and barely a glance in their direction. About to ask Richard a leading question about Francois, he declared in hushed tone, “I think I’m bleeding.”   
   “I have a wound in my shoulder, and I swear blood is running down my arm.”
   She instinctively glanced the length of his arm to hand, and indeed his fingers were blooded and blood dripping to the floor. “Oh Lord.” She snatched his lace-trimmed kerchief from his sleeve, and discreetly wrapped it around his hand to cover his blooded fingers.  “Just keep walking toward the garden doors.”
   “Damn fool, I’ve been such a damn fool,” he said, as they hurried out into the cool night air, stars in abundance and as yet no moon. “We can go round to the stables and perhaps slip back into the house unseen.”
   As they hurriedly made their way around the house aided by light casting through windows, she asked, “How did you come by this injury?”

To see entries by other participants go here.