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Monday, 21 July 2014

Monday Morsel: No More Hell-Gates - An Excerpt from 'Stalking the Demon'


Gisayne settled back on the bed with a sigh. Her trust in her father was beyond reproach, but the council could veto him, and she had no more reason than Alloran to have any faith in them. ‘I’ll hold my silence. But you promise me, Alloran al Kahliln, you promise me that you won’t under any circumstance open another hell-gate!’

‘No hell-gates. I promise.’ He took her hand in his and forced a smile. ‘What possible reason could I have to want to open one?’


Her brows pinched, and a smile didn’t even tug at the corners of her downturned lips. ‘I don’t know. I just have a very bad feeling.'


* * *


Thanks for dropping by! Don't forget, this is the second draft, and as such won't be perfect. If you like what you read, and are so inclined, show your support by leaving a comment. Stalking the Demon is expected to be released in August. If you'd like to sample more of my writing, check out the free short stories available on this site.

If this is your first visit to Monday Morsels, find others in the series by clicking on the ‘Monday morsel’ tag, or go to the first installment for Stalking the Demon.

More about Stalking the Demon:


Alloran did everything within his power; he banished the demon and sealed the portal. But the world is still careening into hell.


Six months after Ladanyon's defeat, Gisayne is fading away from a baffling illness. Alloran is desperate for a cure, but he has a secret - the fabric of reality is collapsing, threatening to spill unrestrained demons into the world of Verusia. Is Ladanyon striking back at Alloran from the hell to which he was condemned, or is there a traitor among them?

The only people he can turn to for help deciphering the linked mysteries of Gisayne's affliction and the collapse of the world are the two research assistants set to spy on him for the council of wizards - but he knows he can't trust them.

Everything Alloran loves races toward destruction - and all the answers are locked away in hell.

If you enjoyed this post, please feel free to check out my previous posts if you haven't already. If you're finding yourself here often, you might like to join as a member, sign up to the blog through RSS or email, or sign-up to my newsletter. Check out my May Newsletter if you missed it.

Don't forget to share the love and spread the word on Twitter, Facebook or StumbleUpon (or other social networking site of your choice) if you know other people who might also enjoy this.

Thanks for stopping by and visiting!


Friday, 18 July 2014

To York By Train: Enroute to Scotland with Ciara Ballintyne




It’s time – we’re boarding a train for York on our second day in London. The decision to travel by train was prompted by the fact I’m told that:
  • Traffic getting out of London is hellish; and
  • The immediate scenery is bloody boring anyway.
Or so I’m told.

We could get the train all the way to Edinburgh, but we want to drive up through the Scottish Borders, so instead we’ll get off at York, do a little sightseeing, stay overnight, and drive on tomorrow.

While we’re in York, I absolutely want to see Jorvik, but other activities will probably depend on time and how we feel. In my experience, optional activities are great to fill in time when you feel like it and to skip when you don’t.

Jorvik

Viking woodturner at Jorvik

Apparently this is a must-see – or again, so I’m told. Or at least so the website says. It could be biased.

This is a reconstruction of 1000 year old Viking streets, I think based on actual excavation at Coppergate, and including finds from the dig. You can travel around the Viking-age city to see its houses and backyards and experience a bit of their everyday life, including blacksmithing and cooking. I imagine it’s a little like visiting Pompeii but with additional experiences. I could be wrong. In any case, it seems worth a look.

York City Sightseeing Bus


This seems like a good optional experience for if we’re tired but have some time to burn. No walking, just a drive on an open-top bus for an hour checking out the city sights. Great for tired kids who don't want to walk anymore.

Castle Museum 

Recreation of Victorian Street

I would really like to see this, but it will be dependent on time and the goodwill of my children. If I haven’t previously mentioned, we’ll be travelling with our (then) 6 and 3 year old daughters, as well as my parents.

The museum includes recreated Jacobean dining rooms, information about famous Victorian criminals and exhibits all the way through to the swinging Sixties - which, truth be told, interests me less.

The museum has a particular exhibit designed to 'take you back in time' with recreated Victorian street 'Kirkgate' which allows you to experience victorian shops and their goods, including luxurious fabrics, traditional sweets, and children's toys. Luxurious fabrics. Mmm. The flip-side shows you Victorian life in the poverty-stricken back streets.

A nice bonus is that kids go free with a paying adult.

National Railway Museum


Possibly a good family outing, as we can take the kids to see trains through history, including 'the Mallard' the world's fastest steam train, the Japanese bullet train and Queen Victorian's luxury train.

For the kids it features an outdoor play area and a miniature railway ride. We recently did something similar here in Australia and the kids loved it.


Touring Scotland with Ciara Ballintyne


Ciara Ballintyne is visiting Scotland in 2016 - join her on a virtual tour of Scotland and other parts of Great Britain as she plans her trip. Somewhere you think she should go or stay? Please comment!
 

If you enjoyed this post, please feel free to check out my previous posts if you haven't already. If you're finding yourself here often, you might like to join as a member, sign up to the blog through RSS or email, or sign-up to my newsletter in time for the July newsletter. Check out my May Newsletter if you missed it.

Don't forget to share the love and spread the word on Twitter, Facebook or StumbleUpon (or other social networking site of your choice) if you know other people who might also enjoy this. 

Thanks for stopping by and visiting!

Monday, 14 July 2014

Monday Morsel: The Case of the Disappearing Wall - An Excerpt from Stalking the Demon


A sombre expression settled on Dek’s blunt features. ‘This last is more rumour ‘an fact, but ‘tis spreading like wildfire in the city. They are saying as ‘ow the wall o’ a tavern o’er on Miessen Street in the poor quarter just disappeared.’

Alloran’s stomach dropped. ‘It did what?’

Dek shrugged. ‘Rumour, I said. I went down to ‘ave a look-see as it seems many o’ the city people did. Ain’t seen such a press o’ people since the festival for the king’s jub’lee two years past – but the wall as they was making such a fuss about was still there. The tavernkeeper insists as 'ow it was gone an’ then back again – raising all ‘ell about how the wall ‘adn’t come back square with the building.’

‘That’s preposterous!’ Gisyane’s face slowly turned red with each passing word, and she waved her hand to emphasise each point. The forgotten covers slipped to expose her lace-covered breasts. ‘Even supposing such a thing could be done, why? What possible reason could a wizard, anyone, have for making a wall vanish and come back?’

Dek’s frown deepened, and his fingers tapped along the chair back as he stared down at his knuckles. ‘Can’t say as I know, lass. But the wall, ‘twas as the tavernkeeper said. Wasn’t square. Might always ‘ave been that way, I suppose, although if so ‘tis the worst example I’ve ever seen.’

Alloran cleared his throat. ‘It, uh, might not be so preposterous at that.’


* * * 

Thanks for dropping by! Don't forget, this is the second draft, and as such won't be perfect. If you like what you read, and are so inclined, show your support by leaving a comment. Stalking the Demon is expected to be released in August. If you'd like to sample more of my writing, check out the free short stories available on this site. 

If this is your first visit to Monday Morsels, find others in the series by clicking on the ‘Monday morsel’ tag, or go to the first installment for Stalking the Demon.

More about Stalking the Demon:


Alloran did everything within his power; he banished the demon and sealed the portal. But the world is still careening into hell.


Six months after Ladanyon's defeat, Gisayne is fading away from a baffling illness. Alloran is desperate for a cure, but he has a secret - the fabric of reality is collapsing, threatening to spill unrestrained demons into the world of Verusia. Is Ladanyon striking back at Alloran from the hell to which he was condemned, or is there a traitor among them?

The only people he can turn to for help deciphering the linked mysteries of Gisayne's affliction and the collapse of the world are the two research assistants set to spy on him for the council of wizards - but he knows he can't trust them.

Everything Alloran loves races toward destruction - and all the answers are locked away in hell.

If you enjoyed this post, please feel free to check out my previous posts if you haven't already. If you're finding yourself here often, you might like to join as a member, sign up to the blog through RSS or email, or sign-up to my newsletter. Check out my May Newsletter if you missed it.

Don't forget to share the love and spread the word on Twitter, Facebook or StumbleUpon (or other social networking site of your choice) if you know other people who might also enjoy this.

Thanks for stopping by and visiting!
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