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Diana in the dark Chapter 11 ‘Dark lines’ (remurdered)

Here I go again recycling material. Well hey there, that wont be too long because I just finished furiously beating out the plan for Cur 2 and it turned out pretty nice and easy.

Although my plan to turn it into a five part series was sort of torpedoed because I basically decided that the structured would be better if I mashed two of my book ideas together. Otherwise I’d have had to come up with a bunch of filler to water down each concept and I didn’t want to make this middling story full of filler unconnected to the lore and plot.

Also laziness, pulling unconnected story out of your ass is hard and all I’m really doing with this is taking the actual mythology and give it connective tissue so it seems like a story and not just a bunch of stuff happening. So it’s not just X god did this, you understand their motivations, you know why they did it and how they feel about it.

So I’m just reciting mythology, I’m giving it life and taking a hell of a lot of liberties to do it. So I could insert huge swaths of unrelated story from different sources for instance some of what I added was from Arthurian legend and I added a tiny bit of Lovecraft because that’s just fun and forgive me for thinking a race of evil fish people should be a little lovecraftian haha.

But I didn’t want to take away from the plot and just have this little padded book, I want to write something I would read, I want adventure, I want a journey. I don’t want my characters to go to one place and be there the whole time, I want them to feel like I’ve gone with them. So to give it more scope I scraped two books and made one cohesive story.

It’s set to be a trilogy and I might just write them concurrently with clown shit in between haha. I basically don’t want to drip feed people this story or try and stretch it out like this is just a middle book, I want it to stand on it’s own and surpass the first which this definitely will. This book will make the first look a tiny in comparison by it’s scope. And then by the third book it will make the leap to epic fantasy, this second book is like the bridge from tight sword and sorcery pulp fantasy to epic sprawling huge battles fantasy.

Yeah so probably gonna start that next week but I feel like I should finish Loverman first just for the sake of my sanity. I’m imagining one person out there just ripping their hair out longing for a conclusion lurking just around the corner. Of course this person doesn’t exist or is more or less me. I’m just sort of feeling fantasy right now, sword and sorcery, also want to finish this boring red scare Shadow book so I can get back into Conan, which I’ve been really looking forward to.

Anyway that’s about all, just gonna be looking into more places I can send Cur to, maybe try and get more feedback on it because I think it sags a little towards the end. I dunno, I’ll wait for some objective opinions.

See you…

Locking doors was obviously for poor people who weren’t literally encircled by a small army of trigger happy ex-cops. Because Wendy was out prepping for the prom, it was certain she wouldn’t be here. I knew she had a brother but he was rarely home in the day, myths of an expensive heroin habit abounded. He’d probably stumble home much later, if at all.

The house should be empty but for an annoying little yappy dog she was banned from taking into school in her purse. Hopefully since the prom wasn’t at school, she’d probably have the annoying little rat with her, and I wouldn’t be tempted to pulp its head into an eight hundred dollar Persian rug.

I loved animals, but not that particular one.

I took a quick precautionary glance across the street, but thankfully aside from a team of illegals gardening two houses over, they were quiet. I guessed everyone was out living the good life, lounging around a golf course or a yacht or something. Aside from one guy eating noodles in his underwear and crying in a house he soon wouldn’t be able to afford.

I slipped into the house and closed the door firmly behind me. As I stood in the cool, sweet-smelling foyer, I felt okay. I was just a pretty rich girl coming home from yogalates, walking into her own home—no big deal. Nobody could call the cops over that. It wasn’t like I’d used a grappling hook and scaled the wall garden.

The interior was fresh and clean, cream interior walls with off-white, eggshell tiles on the floor. A staircase, carpeted in a darker cream snaked off from the oddly angled front door up to the bedrooms on the right. A big curtain-less window at the turn of the stairs let in lots of light.

I stopped in the hall and listened to the steady creak of silence. This confirmed the house was empty, so I let go of my breath and padded the tiles and dust off this new set of leathery predator wings.

The entryway opened up into a huge but very minimalist carpeted living room, it seemed to take up a whole corner of the house. It was very eighties deco, devoid of color, with a high ceiling that spanned both floors cut off by a balcony onto the second floor. There was a door off to the left, leading into a relatively small galley kitchen which was nevertheless very nice.

I wasn’t there for the tour, so it wasn’t like it mattered. I doubled back to the front door and started a slow ascent up the stairs. Looked outside the huge window at the turn, hoping not to see some nosey old woman staring at me and memorizing my face for a sketch artist to reproduce.

I figured if I was going to find any evidence at all of Wendy’s guilt, it wouldn’t be lying between the pages of a copy of Teen Vogue on the coffee table.

“Hey remember when I poisoned my dad and framed my mom for the money? Lol smiley face smile face xoxox.”

It wasn’t out of the realm of possibility, but seemed unlikely. But who knew. She wasn’t like me, not the same kind of monster; a normal killer for a normal reason, a sane reason to do something insane, money was the root of all this.

So there was a chance Wendy wasn’t like me at all; there was a chance she had emotions. One of those possibly being guilt, and if that was true, she’d leave some trace of it behind.

My best bet was finding her computer and working a little slack hack magic on it, basically shake it and see what fell out.

I turned the corner, checking the window, but it was just the bare windowless face of the neighboring house staring back at me. I continued on up the second flight, noting an open bathroom off the stairs—seemed an odd place to put a bathroom.

The second floor split off in two directions, leading to the bedrooms. As far as I could remember, Wendy’s bedroom was off to the left, and her parent’s en suite was off to the right. Considering her parents weren’t in the picture anymore, it made little sense to not occupy the empty en suite.

It’s what I’d do, would have to be crazy to let all that closet space go to waste because of what? Sentimentality? Ghosts maybe?

I padded the carpeted floor delicately, hoping my light frame wouldn’t leave any telling footprints. Thankfully I’d remembered to not wear heels, and had opted for a set of flat treadless pumps.

I took the right, peering over the second floor balcony down at the living room and the large windows. It seemed like an average sleepy day in the neighborhood, not a curious dog walker in sight. Just sun shining and birds chirping.

Oh how I longed for the huge savage moon, and that black canvas of night to paint red.  ‘Soon,’ it hissed, and I knew it was right.

Soon I’d have my starry night and my bloody moon.

There was no rush; I’d started as early as I could. They’d be at the preparations until late into the afternoon. Factoring in Frappuccino and pastelito breaks, maybe some California tuna rolls. Skipping breakfast had been a mistake.

New rule; never break and enter on an empty stomach.

The hallway got a little narrower, I passed an airing cupboard and I could smell signs of a lived-in nature. More specifically, Wendy’s perfume; it seemed my estimation of her and our shared desire for closet space was on-point.

I entered, and was sort of surprised that the room was so small. Then I turned my head. I’d stepped into her closet.

I opened the door to her actual room and was instantly taken aback.

It was so… so…

Neat.

If you want to read more of this lovely book I’m probably going to be giving it away to people on my mailing list by the end of the year so join that and hold on to your butts. If you can’t wait that long just head on over to my inkitt page and read the raw version. It’s not all prim and proper but you’ll get the thrust.

 

Cur Chapter 14 ‘Love thine enemy’

Ok so instead of a poem I have this beauty of a chapter as we finally get into the meat of the story.
This is the stuff I was encouraged to hold back for the purposes of a reveal and I wont really know how it works until I get some feedback or I do a solid read through.
But this is when we get into the heart of the first invasion, the real folklore not the shit I made up to go around it haha. I mean there’s a lot of that but this is the real dope and I love it. I love the mythology, I love the whole story, it’s great and I hope you do too because I’m too busy to get anything more up tomorrow. But believe me the next few chapters are gonna be coming hard and I can’t wait for you to read them.
See you…
 
Many years ago when the land was known as Inish Alga, the noble isle.
 
The goddess Tailtui kissed him and her lips were as sweet and as sour as the first blackberry of spring. Her body was as firm and as warm as a log on the fire in front of which they made love. Her body crashing against his like a falling tree she kissed him again with an intense urgency. Looking into his eyes she whispered a blessing and a curse “As long as I love you, you shall never die.”
 
The fire blew out and cloaked the room in inky blackness. A deep silence and a rattling scratching noise came from the fireplace.
 
“What is it Eoichid?” A silken voice asked.
 
Eoichid pushed her off of his large frame and strode towards the fire place. He stoked the embers stabbing at them with a poker his naked broad back to his woman. He could hear the scratching more clearly. It was a skittering noise in the chimney.
 
Just a bird trapped in the chimney” He stated his voice flat and stern as his jawline.
 
Then all of a sudden a thunderous crash and a great black bird hit the embers scattering sparks and hot ash in an explosion of chaotic furry. The bird cawed and sqwarked and flew about the room. Eoichid’s ears pricked as he finally noticed a dull metronome of flapping wings and cawing. He went to the window and the sky was black with their fetid wings. Their vile bulbous black bodies blotted out the sun as they flew as if shoulder to shoulder.
 
Eoichid woke in a sweat, he turned to look at his wife Tailtiu still sleeping, her nose wrinkled as if she smelled something loathesome. Her auburn hair like a bed of autumn leaves. Her face was pale and lovely like freshly fallen snow. Her features that of a faun, or nymph, a slightly upturned nose, light pouted lips and speckled cheeks.
 
He got out from under the furs of their bed and put on a robe. He fumbled out of his bed chambers without waking the goddess and took a lit torch from a sconce in the hall. He walked down the circular stone steps into the druid’s quarters.
 
The druid’s quarters were dank and dusty. The smell of booze and bone dust covered by the sweet scents of lavender and thyme permeated the tapestries on the walls.
 
The room was dark but the outlines of skulls and books and dirty bowls could be seen amassed on the many counter tops and spilling from reliquaries. The piled stone walls were covered in a thick layer of dust.
 
“Caserd! Caserd! are you awake you old fool?” Eochid lit up the old druid’s face with the firelight.
 
The old man spoke without moving his eyes. His face potmarked and covered with an ashen beard. “I’m always awake my lord high king.” He opened just one eye in his wizened face “Is it bad dreams sire?”
 
Eoichid stood motionless at the foot of his bed, the torch held low. “I need you to read the bones again”
 
“As you wish my king” The old druid climbed out of his bed in his night robes and cap and by the light of the King’s torch he placed a candle on the ground. Next to it, a cup of water and another cup in which he poured alcohol.
 
He sat with his legs bony crossed on the stone floor and took a deep breath closing his eyes and then dropped a single piece of silver into the bowl of water.
 
“The bounty of the deep” The old man whispered hoarsely.
 
He clapped his hands and the candle lit. “The rising of the light”
 
He dipped his finger in the water and touched his forehead.
 
The druid gazed at the flame and cleared his throat “Between fire and water, I find my balance”.
 
He then lifted the cup with the alcohol in it. “I drink to the holy powers of the world- I drink to the ancestors – I drink to the land spirits – I drink to the shining goddesses and gods – To all the beings in all the worlds – In land sea and sky below and on high – I drink this cup of fellowship.” The old druid then threw the liquid to the back of his throat instantly causing a fit of coughing.
 
When the coughing fit subsided he took a swig from the jug from whence he poured it and cleared his throat again. He scrunched up his face and taking a handful of bones he threw them into a pewter dish.
 
He moved them around a little and squinted at them and then moved them around again. He looked puzzled for a moment and turned back to his stone jug and took another long pull resulting in the same amount of coughing as before.
 
“Spit it out” Eoichid erupted impatiently.
 
“Black wings” The old man sputtered. “I see a sky covered in a blanket of black wings”.
 
 
The next morning Eoichid looked out on the balcony of his chambers. He watched as slow creeping mist covered the mountains of Sliabh an Iarainn to the west. Looking out at them from his capital of Tailtin, named for his wife and goddess.
 
The mist remained for three days and three nights and the high king watched it with cool trepidation. Until the third it cleared but in its place a mighty ship crewed by shining people stood on the mountain.
 
They slowly advanced westward toward the sea of Ulster. A messenger was sent forth from both tribes.
 
 
Sreng the mightiest champion of the Firbolg, rode his black horse up the hill carrying the shovel headed javelin of the Firbolg. A long rounded shield on his back and an iron club on his belt to parlay with the outsiders. On his shield was the crest of Connacht, the sword arm and black bird. He wore a multicoloured patchwork cloak and a heavy hide jerkin. He was large and broad shouldered with a weathered face and long black beard and hair.
 
The shining one stood on the hill, he was small but fair of face with long golden hair with no beard and carried a sharp thin spear.
 
The sky was dark slate grey, a light mist covered the ground and a strong wind blew them both and speckled rain. The green hills stretching on forever, sheep in the fields grazing calmly, a squat crow sat on a high stone next to the hill sqwarking to itself.
 
From the hill Sreng could see the mighty capital Tailtin. Hundreds of smoke stack round houses surrounded by a huge wall of timber and the fort that was the high king’s keep towering at the top of it.
 
The shining one spoke and his voice was like honied water, calming but firm and constant, delicate but sure. “I am Bres the beautiful of the Tuatha De’ and I offer you glad tidings, brother.”
 
Sreng stopped at the bottom of the hill to look at the stranger. His skin was pale almost silver and translucent in color, his features sharp and his ears slightly pointed at the top. He wore a light and loose tunic with his arms and chest exposed revealing strange blue markings which seemed to glow when the light hit them.
 
His eyes too were strange, they were a bright amber color. There was a moment before Sreng decided to speak.
 
“I am Sreng of the Firbolg”. He bellowed, his eyes lidded and searching.
 
“So we share the same tongue – cousins perhaps?” Bres smiled jovially and carelessly.
 
Sreng stared trying to hide hide amazement for a moment in silence.
 
“My people talk of our ancient predecessors walking this, our ancestral home, is it that I look at a ghost of our past?” Bres jested with a mocking smile.
 
“I am no ghost” Sreng said as he continued to study the stranger’s weapons as he’d never seen anything like it before.
 
They looked strong and deadly sharp but were thinner than any weapon he’d seen. He could barely fathom how something as thin as a goose feather could be a weapon at all.
 
“You like my spear? Here, take it if you like.” Bres tossed the spear sideways and it floated through the air weightlessly. Sreng caught it in his huge hand and his eyes widened as he took it in and felt that it had almost no weight. He gawped at it in amazement as he ran his finger over the fine point and sharp edge and saw blood. He sucked his finger and looked up at Bres.
 
“You can keep it, we have many more” He grinned. “I wouldn’t mind taking a look at that one on your back.”
 
Sreng thought for a moment before deciding it was only chivalrous to do the same. He slid his javelin out of the doe skin and tossed it at Bres as one would a log onto a fire.
 
Bres caught it in one hand and swung it about himself as if he’d handled it a thousand times before. Cutting through the air with the savage recurved blade and stabbing the air with the rounded shovel point looking down the hefty haft.
 
“A good weight to it” He said as he jostled it playfully. “How do you get this metal to behave?”
 
“Our forging techniques are a guarded secret.” Sreng said gruffly.
 
“I see”
 
“Why is it you’ve come?” Sreng asked.
 
“Oh didn’t I say already?” Bres licked his lips and grinned. “We’re home”
 
“What is it your people want, be clear so I may return to my king.” Sreng said curtly, letting some irritation slip into his voice.
 
Bres pursed his lips and tapped his fingers along the haft of the rugged javelin.
 
“Half”
 
“Half?” Sreng spat.
 
“Half the island” Bres smiled playfully but he was not joking.
 
“You wish me to relay this to my king, High king Eoichid Mac Erc? That you want half of all that is his?” Sreng said almost dumbstruck by this boldfaced arrogance.
 
“I can do it myself” The voice came from close behind Sreng.
 
Sreng blinked and saw the shining man on the hill was gone and next to him stood a reflection of himself staring back at him carrying his own javelin. In an instant the javelin came down and cleaved Sreng’s mighty head from his shoulders. His head had rolled halfway down the hill before his body fell.
 
“Babd, did that please you?”
 
The crow shone and changed into the form of an elven woman wearing a deep red silken dress, her lips two were kissed as such.
 
“Yes my lord”. She cooed.
 
“Take the spear and the body back to Nuada, Dian Cecht will most likely want to study both.”
 
“Yes my lord”.
 
 
“Half!? HALF!?” Eoichid shouted his voice booming around the stone walls of his audience chamber. His face youthful and handsome as it was, twisted by rage and in his eyes a battle tested ugliness dwelt. “They come into my land, the land we fought and bled for. The land we built from nothing with our own hands, the very soil carried on our backs from that cursed land that slaved us and he wants HALF!?” The veins on his neck stood out like the branches of a tree and so to the scars on his face were licked by torchlight.
 
Sreng knelt before him, his eyes fixed on a spot on the floor as Eoichid paced back and forth.
 
“Never” Eoichid whispered. “NEVER!” He bellowed. “If we give them half this day they’ll take all from under our noses tomorrow.” Eoichid walked over to his throne, which was a simple chair made of ash with a gold leaf trim and the coat of arms relief. The slim beautiful spear of the Tuatha de’ draped across its arm rests. He snatched it up off his chair “And what is this? A chariot ornament, a giant whore’s hairpin” He said as he snapped the clean wooden haft over his knee and threw the two pieces into the fire.
 
The high king calmed himself and addressed his champion. “Sreng, you will ride out at first light and ask them what field of battle they wish to die on. We’ll meet them with shovel or pick or fork if they like but they will never have this land.”
 
Sreng nodded and didn’t say another word.
 
“You’re dismissed.”
 

Read the rest of the chapter on inkitt Love thine enemy

Cur Chapter 6 ‘Hammer to fall’

Good morrow gentle folk,
Gonna keep this super short and sweet because I sort of lost yesterday in the best way possible so had to cram everything I had to do then into today so lots of editing spamming, procrastinating, all packed into today haha.
So yeah that’s it, see really short right haha? But that haiku yesterday was cool right? Right?

See you…
*spoilers*
This chapter is really spicy haha.
 
A crow perched atop the highest stone structure of Tallaght. It watched as Birog of the Tuatha De’ descended her horse and cautiously entered the walls of the cursed city.
 
She stopped in the entryway and seemed to sniff the air taken by a familiar scent. She dropped to one knee taking off one of her gloves and touched the ground with her bare hands.
 
She rubbed some sort of substance between her fingers before cautiously putting it in her mouth to taste it. She instantly spat it out and said “Sea salt, how odd.”
 
She rose from the ground and put her glove back and mused to herself “All their salt is surely mined, why would sea water be here, inland of all places? When a fresh water river runs but a stones throw.”
 
She stopped and straightened rigidly as she craned her neck trying to listen for people or animals but not even the crow cawed. Just dead silence and the calm creaking of the empty houses echoing the empty streets.
 
“The village is abandoned, but I was sure they were here, perhaps they camped here and then moved on, maybe I can find something in one of these houses”
 
She tied her horse up at the gates. Briefly she glanced at the standing stone with alien symbols not of her people, she assumed it must have been left from the Firbolg.
 
She entered the small round house tucked closely by the outer fence which was a stone layered daub and thatch wall. Similar to most perimeter construction in villages at the time.
 
On the surface the house was fairly unremarkable. A simple stone and clay hut with the standard spiral thicket inlays and a thatched conical roof. The village had seemed strange to her but she had assumed the village had been abandoned but the inside of the hut seemed to tell a different story.
 
One where food was left to spoil in the pot and a table was lain ready for it to be served. A number of sets of simple hide and leather shoes left untouched and clothes slowly being devoured by all manner of insects.
 
Conclusion could only be that they fled in a hurry or they hadn’t fled at all.
 
The same strange smell of sea spray and the salt hanging in the air, so odd for it to be here as well. The building was a very simple dwelling with the fire pit in the centre and the beds on one side and a simple table for eating on the other. The beds looked slept in but untouched, a thick layer of dust covering them. One adult sized and two small wooden frame bed with hide and fur bedding drawn up.
 
A strange feeling gripped her and she took to looking at the ceiling and the inner thatch working. Staring at the elaborate patterns of cobwebs that had collected there.
 
She paused breathing in through her nostrils and closing her eyes. Then swallowing her fear and trepidation she marched over to the adult bed and drew back the covers swiftly.
 
As she feared underneath the remains of a couple clinging to each other, their expressions of horrifying finality. They had no eyes or tongues or lips but there was something there, something that struck a terrible enervation in them. Skin, what little was left was drawn and yellow and putrified. The smell of the sea salt must have masked it or else there was nothing left to rot. The beetles taking all the flesh for their own and leaving naught but cold off white bone.
 
“They must have been preparing food and then hid here” She remarked to herself. “What could have scared them so?”
 
She shuddered and covered them up again and looked over at the children’s beds.
 
“Oh goddess no”
 
She slowly walked around the adult bed and approached the children’s small simple beds. She took another deep inhale of salty air and turned over their covers.
 
She sighed in relief to see them empty.
 
“Empty?” she ground her teeth “Where are the children?”
 
A noise outside, the clopping of an unfamiliar horse on hard stone, a heavy harsh whinnying that sounded like a howl of a man pained.
 
She took to the small shuttered windows. She got low and peeped out at the cluttered claustrophobic streets seeing nothing. Only hearing the distant closing sound of devil hooves.
 
Then suddenly a black horse’s head appeared close to the window too close, the sound of the hooves completely divorced from its distance. She shrunk back into the hut stupidly trying to avoid the gaze of a dumb horse and reaching for a sword that wasn’t there. Terrifying as it was looming over her.
 
The horse passed by the window and she caught a glimpse of the rider. He was enormous, much larger than any tuatha she’d ever seen. Black armor that looked like bones and a skull death mask with gleaming red jeweled eyes. The black rider silently seemed to throb with breath. His armor rising and falling heavily, making a terrible noise like ribs being scraped with a knife. The plates rattling and shifting as the horse jossled.
 
The mysterious knight scanned the area, what was he looking for? Why here? Why now?
 
After a moment, he whipped the reigns as if angry at the air, spurred the horse and disappeared from the frame of the window.
 
She left it a moment, holding her breathe as she listened to the horses hooves get further away and it’s terrible cries cease.
 
Cautiously she approached the entrance to the round house, taking careful quiet steps on the earthen floor covered in loose straw.
 
She swallowed and listened and when she was satisfied stepped out of the small building and looked around. Without warning a tight gripping sensation around her heart told there was strong magic trained on her. She froze looking at the ground and a huge shadow growing at her feet.
 
She turned and saw the black knight on horseback standing on the thatched roof of the hut looking down at her. The horse scrapping at the straw and snorting breathing heavily.
 
“Hello girl, I’ve been looking for you!”
 
 
Head on over to inkitt to get the rest of the chapter right here.

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