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Prompt: morris dancing

I always said that I'd write a story based in the strange and often drunken world of morris dancing. Here I believe I can claim to have been the first person in the history of ever to combine morris dancing and the Cthulhu mythos. I would like my prize now, please.

Cthulhu cheers me up no end. I actually feel sufficiently recovered that I might be able to sleep now. :D

May Day

They danced in the main street while stallholders did a brisk trade in toffee apples and sausages in bread. They danced back and forth, sometimes with white handkerchiefs flicking one-two, sometimes with staves of wood that thunked and clicked against each other. They did Ducks in the Privy, Shave the Donkey, Portsmouth, Pershore and Queen's Delight, and Tom did four jigs. Finally, as sunset started in, they started on the first dance in their final set, called Innsmouth Hey. They followed on with Hastur's Fancy, Flowers of Arkham and Madness in the Mill.

The onlookers who escaped before the Old Ones rose from the sea and came upon the shore could not ever afterwards hear the sound of bells without screaming.
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Prompt: The Graveyard Book

No relation to Neil Gaiman's upcoming book of the same name, other than deciding to use the title as a prompt.

Read more... )
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Here's the second half of my flash fiction challenge for today: the at-least-100 words of original writing. Today's is from the untitled novel, which I'm tempted to title "Blue", just so I have something by which to refer it. I didn't end up writing my original stuff yesterday, due to Circumstances, so the fact that both day 1 and day 3 are twice the length of the minimum requirement will just have to do.

Below is what I've written today, with fake LJ-cuts to link you to my writing journal where the "full" version shall be kept.

( Fake LJ-cut to first part )

father’s house, with his father’s butler and his father’s dead animals on the wall. Surrounded by generations of Triskels – and he’d sundered his ties to his family so thoroughly that he couldn’t help but think of them as his father’s ancestors. And there was the enormous portrait of his father over the fireplace – showing the elder Triskel looking heroically across a battlefield done in sombre blue-greys. That was recent. It hadn’t been there when Tristram had still been living in the house.
Tristram had to admit that he thought so little of his father that – no, there was no point in trying to put a spin on it. Tristram knew the old bastard, and he suspected that his father had done it deliberately, had known somehow that he wasn’t going to come back from this last campaign, and had ensured that some large representation of himself would be there to … keep an eye on him. Keep him in check. Make sure that he lives up to the Triskel family name.
Dear god, thought Tristram. So much had been going on since his father’s death, but that fact hit him squarely between the eyes. He could no longer hide out as Tristram Archer. His father had, by his death, forced him back into the family fold.

( Fake LJ-cut to second part )
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Userinfo Interests Flash fiction, #3 of 150.

Candles as Warmth )

This one's an actual drabble. Precisely 100 words. BOOYAH!
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A piece of userinfo interests flash fiction, as inspired by mattador.

Gerald looked around the countryside and sighed. This was as far as he wanted to go today. And how far had it got him? He was on a small hill in the middle of bloody Wales, his girlfriend had left him, and he wouldn't even reach the proposed end of their journey (in Glastonbury) for ages. He pulled off his knapsack and sat on an exposed rock. It was hard, and poked him in uncomfortable places.

An old man crested the hill. He must have been right behind Gerald on the track, but he’d never seen the man before. He was half a foot shorter than Gerald, and heavily built, but just going to fat. He had a bushy white beard like a Santa Claus, or like a train engineer in a Victorian picture book.

“Naice day for a walk, ay?” he said, in the ludicrous lilting Welsh brogue that Gerald had come to loathe over the last week and a half.

“Not really,” said Gerald. The sun was high in the blue sky, and the glare was beginning to hurt his eyes. He pulled his sandwiches out (carefully wrapped in clingfilm) and discovered that they had been bent out of shape and squished in the middle. He peered at them. They were ham and cheese. Bloody wonderful.

The old man sat down next to him companionably and began to unpack his lunch. “So whair are you going? Not a town for some way.”

Gerald let loose a little bark of laughter. “Glastonbury. My girlfriend wanted to visit King Arthur’s grave.”

“Your girlfriend?” The man looked at him over his flask of hot tomato soup. “She the blonde girl I passed some time back? Knapsack shaped like a caterpillar?”

“Yes,” Gerald said shortly. He took a vicious bite of his sandwich. They were just as awful as he’d expected – far too much margarine and someone had thought it a bright idea to season the ham with ketchup.

“Interesting story, King Arthur,” said the old man, packing up his soup and tactfully changing the subject. “He never was King of Britain, you know. Not the way they say now. He wasn’t British at all. Tha’s what you don’t find out.” He slung his knapsack on and stood up. At least he, Gerald, wouldn’t have to try to make pointless conversation now.

“What they never tell you,” the old man continued, “is that Arthur was Welsh.”

It may have been a trick of the light, but as Gerald watched the old man continue down the track and out of sight, the sun lit his white hair so that it glowed, like a corona. Or a crown.
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How much do I want these shoes? Specifically the 8" Jump Boot. But somehow I feel it is not to be. Even had I the AU$200 I'd need (what's the exchange rate? Maybe I'd only need AU$150), I somehow doubt they'd come in US men's size 4 (which is my shoe size. The only shoe size I can remember. US men's 4. I think I'm somewhere between a AU women's 5 and 6 but I am not perfectly sure). I haff smaaaall feet.

I am, in fact, writing my novel, but I had to take a break and write down a piece of HP flash fiction that ended up slightly longer than I expected. As a result, I've only written a couple of hundred words of my novel today, but I've written 465 words of this damn story. By the way, if you want to correct my terminology (I'm not certain "chain molecules" is the term I mean - those of you with chemistry knowledge might know), feel free to leave me a comment. Bright sparks might spot the wossname I've nicked from Pratchett, and many thanks to the Harry Potter Lexicon, whose article here gave me a plot point, but otherwise all my own work. Anyway, it's finished, so here it is:

A short piece on Hogwarts Castle; Harry Potter fic, gen. )

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