Wednesday, 18 January 2017

A little idea

    Chapter one

    The night it had happened had gone so perfectly that for once, for maybe the first time in her life, Ivy believed that nothing at all could go wrong however she couldn’t have been farther from the truth; she actually believed that she had, in being so naive to think this, jinxed herself and the man she loved. The whole day had been just right, they had woken late and after having raided the small country kitchen of the cottage that they had rented for the summer, they returned to bed to eat bacon and scrambled eggs with toast lavished in butter. They kissed lazily laid amongst the sunbeams with no rush about them to move and begin their day and as the sun reached its height in the sky, Ivy sang at the top of her ever so slightly off tone voice while her husband, Nick, made haphazard sandwiches for the impromptu picnic they had decided to take,
“P.” he called from the Kitchen, P had become her nickname after realising that every nickname he developed for her seemed to begin with the sixteenth letter,
“Yeah” she called back blowing bubbles into the air and batting them as they floated back to the water,
“We’ve only got ham and cheese sandwiches, not much of a picnic i’m afraid” he returned, now poing his head round the open bathroom door, a smile broke out across his face at the sight of his wife with her hair piled atop her head and smothered in bubbles, she grinned back,
“We’ll stop at that little shop on our way, now gimme a kiss” she winked blowing bubbles his way. He moved closer and leaned over the bath, kissing her with slightly parted lips, the way she knew she liked it. He knew exactly what his wife's game was as she pulled him in closer and it wasn’t to gain more intimacy, instead the child in her took over and she pulled him from his unsteady stance and into the bath tub with her.   
    She loved to watch him, watch him sleep, dress, play; he played guitar and she could watch him all day and all night long. This was no different; Ivy grinned as she watched her husband mop the escapee bubbles and water from the black and white tiled bathroom floor. She smiled at the way he he had to tidy right away, had to keep things in their places, her heart warmed at how careful he was as he did it, being sure to get into every nook, to mop up every stray bubble and droplet of water.
“Okay, ready” she asked her stomach growling in unison with his own, she knew him better than she knew herself and vice versa, and she knew that by that point in the day, after the morning's activities; that he would be twice as hungry as she was.
“I think clothes are a must before we go outside, don’t you” he teased as he brushed past her and pulled clothes from the still unpacked bag.
“Hmm I dont think so” Ivy teased back, watching him dress in a plaid shirt and grey t-shirt. She kissed his neck as he swept her up and carried her from the room,
“Okay, ready?” he mimicked letting her down
“Hmm” she answered simply as they left the cottage hand in hand.

    Ivy had no idea what was in store that day but what she knew right then and there was that her day, her life could not have been more perfect; what she should have realised was that there was only one way for it to go now.

Sunday, 20 November 2016

Pandoras journey begins

 Pandora stepped out into darkness, no stars lit the sky, no moon cast a sallow glow down upon the sleeping flowers; it was as though they, too had all fallen from the sky when the plane had, she searched for a few seconds, scouring the sky for any remnant of twinkling light before the feel of Boos damp nose against her palm drew her back,“I know” she said quietly conscious that someone might be listening for her, for life that they might extinguish. She drew in a deep, slow breath and began walking. The journey she made was one she had made many times; over the patio, out the side gate that always squeaked and stuck slightly and down the pathway out on the street. She had though that the street lights might still be on, casting dancing shadows across the alpha but as she drew closer the darkness grew deeper; the streets were dead. What felt like only a few hours ago the road had been alive with horror, the fallen plane burned and belched out thick black smoke and people swarmed some in terror and some in aid of those who needed help but now no one remained; only the dead.     Pandora could see the white of abandoned bandages, the bright red of the fire engines that remained and the harsh pale of the skin of the dead men and women who had been left in panic. The plane no longer burned but still cast of waves of thick heat, Pandora stared up at the blackened windows, a deep shiver ran down her spine as she though she saw someone move with in the plane; she turned choosing to ignore her imagination and began to walk up the street. She had never seen the world so dark, bathed in noir and shadow but she felt like abaddon had risen up while she had been sleeping and settled upon the earth, smothering it; choking it.

Sunday, 3 July 2016

Inspiration for future fiction

Something short that popped into my head and so its gone in the 'future ideas' folder where it will sit until I find time to breath more life into it :)

'As they watched Romeo serenade Juliette with his borrowed words of love and promise, tears
streamed down their raw faces, their eyes started blankly at the scene before them, their hands lay limp in 
applause and their smiles fell grotesque and macabre.'   

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Something old that's now new: Pockets of time

‘Time is not an entity to be waited for, or waited upon we must ready ourselves, we must greet it with open arms and when time passes us by we must look forward to its next coming. We must not sit and mope and whine that our time has come and gone; that it has slipped through our fingers like the grains of sand on a crisp white beach as the wind sweeps across it; for time is eternal it does not leave us, we leave it and time simply sit and waits for another to come along’
-Margo Layne
    Buildings that had once stood tall and proud had crumbled to the ground with-in a second, in the blink of an eye the ground had been levelled and all that now reached into the sky was the thick black smoke of destruction. There were no screams exploding into the air, no cries of anguish and desperation; there were no people left, no animal’s left to make the exasperated noises of anguish and despair. Margo was alone; she had arrived too late. Just a second too late meant the world had been destroyed; it had started with the cities falling, the rivers and seas drying, the land crumbled and became scorched and those who had not perished in the collapse of bricks and the mortar of metal and glass were burned up, disintegrated. She had started out with good intentions to change the agonies of history, to end the evil that stalked the earth and manipulated time for themselves but now that she stood the tallest thing left in the world she realised how wrong she had been, the things she had changed had been there for a reason, they had had a direct influence on history and on time; this was her fault and now she had to change it back but she had no idea where to start. The city she stood in no longer resembled the one she had left, London was once again burning; there were no street signs, no land marks, nothing remained to point her in the right direction of where she needed to be and she was alone, all alone. Everyone she cared about, the people she needed to keep going had gone, they had all been taken in the blast that had cleared the planet; she had no one.
    She began to walk, it became one of the hardest tasks she had ever undertaken, it took all of her reasoning and strength to get herself to move from the spot that she now felt rooted to. The air was thick and clouded with dust from the fallen buildings; Margo had expected it to be thin and depleting, hard to breath but it was thick like molasses and even harder to take in. It tasted of soot and iron and there was something else that felt rough against her throat and tasted rusty. She struggled to suck air into her lungs, it took all of her power to fill them and even more to breath out the dense air and it was then as she struggled to breath that she realised what it was that was scratching at her throat, that tasted like old pennies and rusty nails. The people that had bustled along the streets of London, the throngs of lives that had existed there had not fallen to the ground dead; they had been disintegrated, turned into tiny particles of matter, particles that she was now inhaling. The sudden realisation caught her off guard, she felt the nausea rise in her stomach, the unmistakable saliva that filled her mouth, the convulse of her stomach, she doubled over as the last remnants of the dinner she had eaten the night before rushed up her throat on a sea of stomach acid and filled her mouth, she felt terrible as she vomited over the cracked earth until nothing remained in her stomach and then she fell to the floor. Margo sobbed for those who had died, for the world; she pulled her knees to her chest and rocked and though she had to fight the convulsions of vomiting she sucked in great gulps of tainted air, she felt pathetic curled  up on the floor like a child with no clue what it was she was going to do. The tears that fell down over her cheeks left clear paths through the dirt that had freely settle upon her skin, the dirt of the dead and the fallen, she was covered in those who had perished and she was the only one who could do something about it, to change what she had started; this was her fault. Margo pushed herself up from the floor, she scolded herself for being so wretched and feeble, this was not what she had been taught; it was her fault and now it was her time to stand up and change what had been put into motion, what she had put into motion.   

Wednesday, 13 April 2016

It's okay

    Recently someone close to me said that they felt ‘worthless’; the definition of worthless is as follows ‘having no real value or use’. This person is one of the few people who mean the world to me and despite them being blind to this fact they are also one of the most amazing and most talented people I've ever met. So when they declared their feeling of worthlessness I felt pained and saddened to hear them say those words. The reason for this sudden declaration was due to them not having spent much time working on moving toward their main goal in life. You see this person, like myself, has a very creative mind and so I understand that when there isn't time or when I've felt too tired or just haven't been able to get into the swing of things it is easy to feel deflated, worthless and useless and very often I've found myself wondering if I'm even going to reach my goals and make my dream a reality. This feeling is even more worrying and nagging if a few days have passed or even a week and no words have been written.So when he said this to me I replied with something along the lines of ‘but you can’t always be doing it’ a crudely put together sentence but the meaning was clear; no matter how much we try to deny it adult life always takes over. Gone are the days when we can spend hours on end doing what we want to do, we have to earn money to pay for bills and food and everything else we need including the nice laptop or expensive software we need to fuel our dreams in the first place. Unfortunately one thing that creative minds often struggle with is the knack of being patient because some of us, like my friend, are competitive and others are just worried our time will run out before we realise our dreams . I'm the latter, in general I'm a very patient person but even I still find myself panicking at the thought of not yet having realised my dream and I become irritated with myself for not writing every day and every spare second I have. Life has a way of producing events that stop us from doing what we want to do but what I have come to realise is that if these events are here for a reason; to keep us sane, we need people and pointless things in our lives to fuel our creativity.
    If ever I'm struggling and I'm finding it hard to write there are a few things that I remind myself of; firstly ‘after every low moment, the only place we can go is up’ something my friend declared moments after saying he felt worthless and secondly as long as we are doing what we can, we will get there. Sometimes I find it hard to write and it really is a simple as that, today I was determined to spend my day off at the laptop writing away but instead I tidied, I painted a bookcase, I watched Miss Marple and I napped and I ate far too many pringles. Sometimes the words just don't want to come no matter how hard i squeeze my little grey cells. As a writer I find myself feeling not only worthless but guilty as though I were neglecting my child but what I've come to realise over the last year is that it is that if we can’t write, or create, we shouldn't. If we don't ‘feel like it’ then have a night off. I used to think that I wouldn't achieve anything by not writing every night, I once heard that if we don't dedicate every second we have to our dreams then we will never achieve them but I believe that there could be nothing farther from the truth. Creative souls draw inspiration from the world around them and the people they hold close, we are who we are because of the connections we have made, we create what we create because of the experiences we have been lucky to have and the people we have been lucky enough to meet; I can speak to my previously mentioned friend and instantly feel refreshed and driven to write for hours.

    I took a step back from my stress and my fear and realised that I am lucky to have something I love, something I enjoy, I am lucky to have a dream and a goal in life for some this is having a family or buying a house but for me it’s writing, to have my words read across the world in every language, to have them inspire dreams and creativity in others. I may not be a success yet but I work hard and sometimes I come home from work and I crash, sometimes I just want to snuggle in and watch a film and what is important for us all to remember is that this is okay. Even if all I write is a quick quote I heard that day that will inspire me in the future or a ten word sentence then that is good enough. To anyone who is creative and reading this it doesn't matter what you do, how much you do it as long as you’re doing it. A good idea is to set a timer, don't pressure yourself, set 20 minutes and I often find that I end up writing for hours. It doesn't matter if you sit and stare at your respective canvases and achieve only 10 minutes or even nothing, that's okay. it's hard to escape the feelings of panic and worthlessness but even if you’re planning what you are going to do next time that’s okay, it's all good and it's also good to give your brain a rest every now and again.

Sunday, 14 February 2016

365 days

We all get a limited number of days with every person we meet in our lives. Our only disadvantage? that we’ll never know how many days we have left. It could be one day, one week, one year even or not even a day at all. Some people are insignificant we barely notice their days passing by but others are so important to us that we wish we could have more, an infinite number of days with them and those are usually the people we run out of time with. Though there is one other disadvantage we have as human beings and that is that those people we want more time with, those we should cherish are the ones we overlook, that we take for granted; the ones we forget about. Whole hours pass, days when they do not cross our mind, not even a flicker of them pirouettes in the corner of our peripheral vision. We so easily get distracted by passing fancies, by iridescent dust particles dancing across the sunbeams of our days that we miss the important moments and then they are gone, just a distant memory outsourced from others minds because we were too busy, too caught up in life to make the memory ourselves. So what if you met the perfect person, the one and you missed every perfect moment you could have had with them, missed everyone of those moments for the 365 days before you lost her; before you realised that you couldn't live without her.

A glimmer of something new

Darkness encroaches and then washes over me in a breath before the sun reappears to chase away my goose pimpled flesh; I don't know where I am but what I am painfull aware of is that our world co-exists with another. A Parallel world that slips through the cracks of the passing time; glimmers in the particles of dust as they float along on rays of sunlight and reaches out for us in the dirty foam of the seas caress.
    I had spotted it once before in the irises of a man I had once known but coincidentally not all that well, they had been the deepest grey with only the slightest shimmer of violet and it was in that hue that I had seen it. He had been in his simplicity so complex that I, even in my genius, had not been able to fathom what it had been that had always left me feeling on edge.

Saturday, 13 February 2016

The boy with the sea green guitar

     The darkness swallowed her up, drank her down and that was where Pandora remained with the lingering feeling of Boos body heat b her side, snoring gently. It felt like nothing could have woken her and she would have remained there in the nothingness of her head but something was pulling her out back to reality. Music notes drifted into her mind and down into the depths like a rope, they lopped around her and pulled her back into the waking world, back to where she did not want to be. She was groggy when she opened her still screaming eyes, her body felt like it had slumbered for only a few minutes but outside night had fallen around them like a soothing blanket, she checked her watches, 6 hours had passed them by, Boo too had woken at the sound of the music as it drifted through the house, she stood with her paws resting on the windowsill, staring intently at something. Pandora rolled from the bed, she wanted to scream but instead stretched the sleep away from her limbs and joined Boo by the window. Outside something was alive, not far from where they rested a building was illuminated and the light seemed to dance and sway along with the music, a guitar, as it filed the night sky. Fire reflected in Pandora’s eyes and though she were inside and so far from it she could feel the heat prickling her skin; then a thought crossed her mind, who was in there playing that guitar? She considered the surge, but why would a member of a sadistic army sit in a burning building sending a rhythm so heart breaking out into the world. Suddenly she felt a need to find out, to go to whomever was in that building and ask them where that song had come from. The haunting melody wrapped its tender fingers around her wrist and pulled her gently from the warmth and relative safety of the house. Boo followed behind her, confusion in her eyes as Pandora walked trance like toward the orange glow and the warming music.
     The closer they moved the louder the rhythm grew until it felt like it were the beating heart in Pandora’s chest; it overwhelmed her and before she realized salty tears fell from her tired eyes, rolled down over her dirty cheeks and fell, vanishing into the darkness around her. Some dried on her cheeks, the heat of the fire as it licked at the blackness of the night, drying them before they had a chance to flee. Pandora stood before a white building that could have been a church but no cross sat atop its roof, nor was there a board advertising the day's sermon. Instead embossed atop the arched door way were the words ‘Community is Faith’ after reading the sentence Pandora took a long step over the threshold of what she had decided was the village’s community center. Inside the fire burned so hot she felt like she might be walking the long path into hell, the flames crackled and spat embers at them as they walked through the randomly set table and chairs toward the stage where the man sat. No matter how close Pandora grew he didn’t seem to notice her or he chose not to, he simply stared down at the shimmering sea green guitar in his bloody hands, picking out a melody so melancholic it cut short Pandora’s breath.
“Hello?” she called though she had barely used her voice for so long in fear of being heard that she thought it had been a stranger whom had called out the greeting. He did not acknowledge her. Pandora moved closer, she could pick out his features now, his blue eyes so sad they resembled the sea after a storm had ripped through it and turned it upside down, its water casting murky and dank. When she looked around him Pandora realized what storm had ripped through his life, why he sat and played in spite of the growing fire and the lurking surge; around him lay the other members of his band. They were all dead, the singer lay on his stomach, to Pandora it looked as though he had been beaten to death, the white of his skull shining through his mass a dark hair, the fire reflected in the pool of deep crimson blood that had formed and thickened and the microphone it looked as though he had attempted to use as a weapon lay beneath him. Toward the back was the drummer, still sat at his drums, one hand still clutching a stick, he looked young; the youngest and it looked as though this might have saved him the same brutal death as the lead singer. The back of his bright blonde hair was mashed with blood and brain matter where the bullet had torn through and behind him Pandora spied a bloody hole in the wooden cladding. She cried for him as she stood there letting the music wash over her, she cried for all of the things he would never do, for the loss of talent and promise, she cried for the sheer unfairness of it.
     She was frozen in time, everything felt like it had stopped, the flames, the smoke, the music; nothing seemed to move, Pandora could stroke the fire, feel no heat, no burn of her flesh, she could walk through it, pass through the pain and the fear that couldn't touch her any more and take his hand. She could break him free of his melancholia, his sadness and lead him to safety. In a perfectly supernatural world that’s what she would have done but in this broken and torn world though her skin had thickened, it could not protect her from the fire nor could it help her save him. The fire had climbed the stairs that led to the stage, it crept toward him but still he played; he picked a tune for the wicked to dance into hell, a melody to carry the virtuous into heaven, Pandora could almost see the souls dancing around him, marching to their destiny.
“Please” she screamed as the fired began to strum its own harmony, she watched the strings burn and snap, coiling, the end searing hot and burning bright like a star in the night sky but still he didn’t flinch,
“Oh god” she gasped as the flames touched his fingertips, she moved forward, the heat was overwhelming, suffocating, she couldn’t fathom how he sitting there, statuesque and silent, he had stopped playing now and had set his guitar down, given it to the flames willingly. Pandora grabbed his leg in hope that human contact might break him free of whatever trance he had fallen into but nothing passed. She wondered if he was even alive or if he had died up there with his friends and if all she was seeing was his soul, waiting to move on. She shook harder, her nails digging into his calf; still he bore no reaction. Her hand fell back to her side, her heart ached for him, for the emptiness that filled his eyes; tears streamed from her eyes, Pandora could have fallen to her knees and wept but instead she wiped her tears free, not only had her skin grown thick but she had learned that she could not dwell; her life and Boos depended on it. When she looked back up, her eyes sore and her skin burning like she had taken a walk on the sun’s surface, he was staring at her, his eyes bore into her but he didn’t speak,
“Please come with me” Pandora begged, “please” but he still didn’t respond instead he stood and he smiled down at her, a smile that wished her luck, that said ‘I hope you make it’ and then he turned and walked into the flames. They swallowed him like a hungry lion devouring a deer; he made not utterance of pain or fear but just vanished like he had never truly existed.
     Pandora left the burning building behind her, she hoped deep down that a voice would call to her, his voice calling for her to wait, to take him with her but it never came and the further she moved from the village the father the thought was pushed from the forefront of her mind. Pandora wished she’d taken a wide birth around that village but as she ventured back into the clogged woodland she began to think that there would be no avoiding death, not any more.