Linda… a week in her life ~ Thursday #serial

Thursday

I have a confession.

No work was done that afternoon. Now I had sheets to clean, thoughts to reassemble. Would I repeat the experience was my first thought? That didn’t take too much consideration. Yes, yes, yes! Is he a keeper? I don’t think so. If he is a test drive; I need more lessons.

He left before I woke. The space beside me empty, his presence lingering. Rolling into that empty space, warmed the scent he had left behind. Bottled, it would sell well. I stripped the bed, leaving the sheets in the machine until later. A quick shower, skipping breakfast, I took the car, to work. I can’t afford to be knocked off my bike right now. That makes it sound like I am planning to in the future. I mean, I don’t want to play with that kind of danger right now.

My boss said I took a big risk telling a writer his idea stinks. ‘I didn’t say it quite like that. ‘

‘Lucky for you he didn’t mind. He said he would send in the locations as they arrive in the story.’

I managed to do some work. The rest of the crew were as pleased as the boss. He is a big name. His books are followed by young enthusiasts all over the world. I felt like I had landed a marlin after hours wrestling, much of which ended up between my sheets. A night to remember, yes. A night to repeat, yes please, and soon, I hope. That depends on his first draft when he sends it in. I cannot wait to start work on it. The sooner I give him something to look at, the sooner we might meet again to approve the work over lunch. I was hoping for a repeat of the last time.

The weeks passed, I was beginning to think he had changed his mind.

Turned out to be five weeks before I received a call for lunch. Same place, mid-day Saturday.

I don’t work weekends. For him I made an exception. I need to drop that into our next conversation. Don’t want him to make a habit of changing my life around. I know, I can hear women across the globe saying, if the sex was worth it, what do you care about weekends?

I do care. All week the boss calls the shots, the weekends I’m in charge.

Saturday is going to prove interesting. My back isn’t exactly up, it’s a bit prickly. It would be up to him to smooth it out.

By now, I had extra work on my desk. I try burying myself in it, not wanting to think about Peter Westwood and his edible eyes. The extra time will give me time to stop thinking about him as I’m sure he’s not the one. I haven’t taken him for a test drive yet. One encounter after a long dry spell doesn’t tell me much more than I was just horny. If there is to be a second time, it must match the first time or surpass it.

I will let you know when that happens. Needless to say, I haven’t had the time to read the book that I picked up…

See you tomorrow…

© Anita Dawes 2021

Linda, Wednesday…

Sorry that we missed a day yesterday! I wonder what you think of Linda…

I found the Rose and Crown too smoky.

Pushing open the door, I remembered Brian had thick, blond hair, a crew cut back then, dark blue eyes. Making my way to the bar, trying to look without swivelling my head too much. Wouldn’t want anyone to think I was about to spew pea soup across the bar or speak in tongues.

It was the eyes I noticed at the corner table. I sat opposite Brian, holding out my hand. He stood, shaking my proffered hand.

‘I’m glad you came.’

The blond hair had vanished, a shiny dome in its place. That makes it sound as if he was doing an impression of St Paul’s. I remembered the whispering gallery when mum took me. I wondered what thoughts were running around inside that dome that will never get said that evening.

He ordered drinks, reminiscing about the old times. The past doesn’t interest me. I could feel boredom creeping over me like unwanted ivy.

About an hour in, I made my excuses. ‘I have a big lunch meeting tomorrow; I need my shut eye. Been nice catching up.’

I stopped myself from saying we should do it again. He stood; I could feel him watching as I left.

It wasn’t exactly a lie. I do have a meeting my boss wouldn’t want messed up.

On my way home, I scolded myself a little. I could have given Brian more time.

I didn’t have to be in work that morning, the boss wanted me fresh for the meeting with Peter Westwood. I chose to wear my pencil skirt, long sleeved pale blue blouse, three buttons undone, showing just enough cleavage. If his eyes drop below my face, I will know something about him. A gentleman never lets you notice his eyes wandering. He is practised, he can do it without staring. This one knew the rules. Not once did I see his eyes wander. Deep brown, like chocolate buttons. Thick black hair with a slight kink trying to be a wave.

He is polite, stood shaking my hand, letting me sit before he did. His voice is deep. Not down in your boots deep, just enough to be sexy. Which I very much found him to be. ‘Would you like to order? I have to admit I am ravenous.’

He spoke naturally, which put me at ease.

We spoke while eating, which surprised me. I had to admit his book idea didn’t go down well with me. A teenage story of murder come whodunnit with a prize, if you entered of a replica of a jewelled dagger.

Knives and guns are all wrong, I told him. I couldn’t in all consciousness work with his ideas. I wondered what my boss would say if he was standing right behind me. I could almost hear him screaming between clenched teeth.

‘Maybe it could be a magical mystery tour around London where the reader could track the perpetrator, and the winner could have lunch with you.’

He must have liked the idea, for he stopped chewing, took a swig of his white wine. ‘That a much better idea. I could run them all over London, then back to Mayfair to the Silver Spoon.’

Before leaving, he gave me his card and his ideas for the sketches he wanted in the book. A young man with a book and pencil in his hand, roaming through London, hoping to win a lunch date with his favourite author.

He offered me a lift back to work.

I told him I was working from home today.

‘Home it is then.’

He sat in the back with me, my skirt riding up more than I would normally like. This time I didn’t tug it down. I couldn’t tell if he noticed the amount of leg on show. ‘Ask your driver to turn left here. I’m the one with the monkey puzzle tree out front.’

Turning to face me, he asked if he could come in for coffee. ‘I think there is more we can do.’

I will let you know tomorrow what he had in mind…

© Anita Dawes 2021

Linda… new hair, new date…

We had some brilliant feedback yesterday for the first episode of Anita’s serial, so thank you all for that.

Here is episode two, so we are looking forward to reading your comments!

The book I brought yesterday kept me up past my usual lights out of eleven pm. It was twelve thirty before I could put it down. The writer has a soft, gentle way of writing that pulls you in on every page. I wanted to know what will happen to the girl and her baby. That’s quite enough of that, or I will want to stay home and read some more.

I am taking the car, after a light breakfast of Rice Krispies. I check the post, just five birthday cards, as I have no family to speak of and few friends. Parking the car in my allotted space, I wondered what I would find upstairs. Would they have remembered my birthday?

I decide on brunette for my hair, in Stella’s across the road from Holland publishing. I can see the shop from my window and have been there twice for a shampoo and trim.

Entering my office space, I saw the envelopes on my desk. Terence arrived with coffee and a cupcake with a lit candle. Stopping in front of me, he said, ‘make a wish,’ with a big grin on his face. I wished for him to have a good life. I know, goody two shoes!

Like I said he’s a good egg. Birthday wishes over with; I find a note on my desk. The boss wants to see me. My guess, it was about Wednesdays meeting. Wants to give me his final pep talk. Well, okay, it is my birthday, I will be kind. Let him believe I am hearing it for the first time. that done, I pick up a file I had forgotten yesterday and put it in my bag.

I had time for a quick sketch of the fire fairy for page five of the new children’s book. Somehow, looking at it, made me think of the last date I had. The cinema, drinks after, that’s when he turned into an octopus. Too many hands had me running to the hills.

That was the beginning of last year, about ten months ago. Enough of that, today my year begins again.

Checking the time, I gather my cards. ‘I’m off, guys. Thanks again for the cards and cupcake.’

Opening the door of Stella’s let out a waft of hair spray, a warm sweet smell. Stella greeted me, ‘Come sit down, Linda. I hear it is your birthday. Carol will see to you today.’

I had barely sat down when they burst into singing happy birthday and another cupcake. This time the wish was for me. I can’t tell you what it was, or it won’t come true. I will let you know if it does. Picking my new colour from her colour range, my transformation began. Carol was quick and nimble fingered. Before I knew it, my hair was being blow dried and I was ready to go home. I liked my new colour, and everyone agreed that it suited me. Making my way back across the road to my car, my footsteps felt lighter.

There is a message on my answer phone. Someone I hadn’t heard from in a decade. Brian, an old flame from school. I listened to the message more times than was necessary. Should I agree to meet him at the Horse and Crown? He had, after all, remembered to wish me a happy birthday. Would I recognise him after all this time? What did I remember about him? Not much, which might be good or bad. He said eight I clock, so I have time to think about it. In the end I decide it would be a good test of my new look.

Would he recognise me? It was a pub, so I decided on my navy trouser suit, cream camisole, navy sling backs with four-inch heels.

We recognise each other without too much trouble. Turns out four inches was the best choice as it put us eye to eye. Save my six-inch heels for a better date.

Now that’s unkind, he might surprise me.

I will let you know tomorrow…

© Anita Dawes 2021

Linda: looking for love…

I have a small star shaped scar on my forearm.

I have been told over the years by many psychics, it’s a deliberate stabbing from a former life. Now, unless they are all reading from the same handbooks for psychics, I have to wonder.

I wish it wasn’t three in the morning, staring at a light spot on my ceiling where the curtains have been disturbed. The empty space beside me, a reminder of being alone. I turn 33 tomorrow. Colleagues at work tell me there is still time to find the one I am so fussy to find.

With luck I may get a few hours sleep. I turn over and try.

Nightmares bleed into morning, I know, because I am screaming.

The nightmare told me I had planted the seed of my own destruction, minutes before conception. I can only hope it’s a long way off.

Standing in front of my hall mirror, I can see I need a do over. My mousy brown hair turning grey, making my eyes look too dark, almost as if I am trying to haunt someone. The rest of me is not so bad. Five foot six, full lips, small nose. My figure is much the same as when I was in my twenties. I don’t tend to pile on the weight, nine stone is comfortable for me.

This morning I will cycle to work, as I feel the need for danger.

The ride to work went better than usual, only one angry driver with his hand on the horn, a face the colour of a beetroot. Poor man, I hope he calms down soon, I wouldn’t want him to blow a gasket.

Today, I cheated. I zipped down the bus lane getting into work ten minutes early in time for coffee. We are not a big publisher, I am an illustrator working until two in the afternoon, then I work from home if I feel like it.

Terence is in early, a good egg, does all the fetching and carrying. Wouldn’t think there is much of that would you, well there is always reams of paper that need cutting. Maggie takes care of the phone and Tom comes in two days a week. The boss sits behind his big glass door, the need to see him slim, as things don’t go wrong that often. Terry, our other illustrator comes in about ten, works until five and doesn’t like to work from home.

I remember to make an appointment for my hair, a birthday gift from me to me. I wonder if it will make me look and feel different, maybe the dream world won’t recognise me and give me better dreams and no nightmares.

My hair appointment all booked for 2.30 on Tuesday.

Waiting for me on my desk, I find the three children’s books which I knew about, plus a folder about a new client that wants to meet with me. “Wednesday lunch, bring your pad and pencil to the Silver Spoon on the corner of the street.”  Peter Westwood, his name didn’t ring bells.

The rest of my day flew by. I decide to try not to upset any motorists on the way home. I stop off at a Spar to find something for my tea, where I also pick up a book. Pretty Baby, by Mary Kubica. I will let you know how that goes when I have read it.

Safe inside my home, I finish off the work I brought with me. Make tea, take a shower and settle down with the book…

See you tomorrow…

© Anita Dawes 2021

Dead of Winter ~ Journey 9 ~ Doors of Attunement #Fantasy @teagangeneviene

In this ninth installment Emlyn, Osabide, and Fotia (in Zasha’s body) traveled to a third world, so little known that it is only called the Other Realm. They hope to restore Zasha. Will Fotia willingly relinquish her new life in a young body? There the trio meet unpredictable, but vastly powerful beings known as the Listeners. One of them is a new enemy. Another might be friend or foe. Either way, he is dangerous.
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Arawn has grown stronger. An army of the dead gathers near the Lost Library. Hallgeir faces one of the biggest decisions of his life.
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Journey with our travelers. Adventure awaits.

Our Thoughts

In the Other Realm, Emlyn and her friends are faced with three doors, all very different, but none inviting. It would seem they must choose one, but should they be opened? Taking an enormous risk, they choose to open the second door and meet a strange creature who warns them of the risks they face. But is he telling the truth?

So many questions in this journey, so many dangerous decisions to make. Emlyn begins to lead the way, her newfound confidence and trust in her own instincts shining like a beacon.

I loved the part when Emlyn is drawn to the mysterious staircase. Something compels her to climb the crumbling steps that seem to lead nowhere and discovers more about this world and her powers.

Was she right to trust her instincts, or is she being beguiled by Arawn?

With each journey, this story gets more and more delightfully complicated. I take my hat off to the author’s incredible imagination for creating this amazing world!

Another amazing Episode from the Delta Pearl!

Teagan’s Books

Saturday, June 12, 2021

Composite image by Teagan R. Geneviene, sourced via PixabayComposite image by Teagan R. Geneviene, sourced via Pixabay

Welcome, my chuckaboos. I hope everyone is safe and well.  The Delta Pearl is almost ready to come into dock.  It’s been a complex story, stretching over many months.  For quite some time, I’ve only been able to offer extra-short episodes.  Happily this one is a normal serial-sized length. 

I’m about to unearth some details from the past, as I tie-off the many threads of this story.  If you didn’t see the recap last weekend, it might be helpful to you.  Use the “Delta Pearl” category on the right margin as a shortcut to all the chapters.

Previously

Clockwork creatures continued to emerge from corners and hidden crannies.  A silver swan, a citrine bumble bee, and a sapphire bluebird flew to perch on Cécile’s outstretched arms.  A moonstone monkey, a rainbow fluorite rabbit, a small rose quartz…

You must read the original post HERE

Dead of Winter: Journey 2, Penllyn by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene @teagangeneviene

Dead of Winter: Journey 2, Penllyn Kindle Edition

Journey 2, Penllyn picks up where the first installment, Dead of Winter: Journey 1, Forlorn Peak stopped. The supernatural warning, “Winter is coming!” continues to haunt Emlyn. Her father has heard her utter those words, and he is displeased to say the least. In fact, her family situation in general is becoming more perilous.

As if visitations from ghosts weren’t enough, another entity has started coming to her. She isn’t sure whether he is a spirit or something else, but he gives her the same prophetic warning.

Now Emlyn’s father has begun to behave strangely.

Join Emlyn on this strange journey to the neighboring village of Penllyn. Try not to look over your shoulder…

About the Author

Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene lives in a “high desert” town in the Southwest of the USA.

Teagan had always devoured fantasy novels of every type. Then one day there was no new book readily at hand for reading — so she decided to write one. And she hasn’t stopped writing since.

Her work is colored by her experiences from living in the southern states and the desert southwest. Teagan most often writes in the fantasy genre, but she also writes cozy mysteries. Whether it’s a 1920s mystery, a steampunk adventure, or urban fantasy, her stories have a strong element of whimsy.

Founder of the Three Things method of storytelling, her blog “Teagan’s Books” contains serial stories written according to “things” from viewers. http://www.teagansbooks.com

Major influences include Agatha Christie, Terry Brooks, David Eddings, Robert Jordan, and Charlaine Harris.

See book trailer videos here: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoM-z7_iH5t2_7aNpy3vG-Q?disable_polymer=true

Amazon Author Page: https://www.amazon.com/Teagan-Riordain-Geneviene/e/B00HHDXHVM
Twitter: https://twitter.com/teagangeneviene
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/TeagansBooks
Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com/teagangeneviene/
YouTube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoM-z7_iH5t2_7aNpy3vG-Q
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/teagangeneviene/

Our Review

The second part of Dead of Winter begins with a mysterious old woman, trying desperately to remember something.

Something important.

I immediately wanted to know who she was, for the warning from the first journey echoes in her confused mind too, but she is unable to remember why.

Emlyn is having disturbing dreams, where a strange man whispers the warning in her ear. When she wakes, it would seem the man had been real, sitting on her bed. She is well used to spirits turning up and doesn’t think this visit strange, but the warning is becoming all too terrifying real.

As this complex story gets under way, there are many questions and mysteries, but the major one for me is, why is Emlyn’s father so disturbed at the mention of winter?

Emlyn has much to keep secret, so is this why her father is planning to send her away with the Deae Matres, the Society of women who travel the world searching out and collecting knowledge?

Looking forward to the next instalment!