Hello my little chickadees. It's all about me today.
As I await my next victim for my blog (rubs hands together) I'll tell you about my short story.
Sleeping With The Gods at just under 13,000 words, was first published by Thorstruck Press as part of an anthology called Castle Drakon. Sadly they closed and this story has been in limbo since then.
Being a rebel I'm having a crack at publishing this one myself. Once I've learnt all the tricks of the trade and purloined a bit of help here and there from a friend I'll put it out there.
The delightful book cover was made for me by graphic book cover designer Charlene Raddon. Here is her blog site:
The covers are stunning and well worth a look. This to put it simply, is why I chose her to design my cover.
Now here's a small taster of the story.
SLEEPING WITH THE GODS
As above so is below …
Maia stood at the entrance to the castle crypt convinced something was still alive in there. She surveyed the surroundings which in some ways reminded her of a temple. Her gaze took in the walls in a comforting shade of blue to the gold filigree of the pillars. The burial tombs were laid out in a side aisle. As Maia gazed up to the dome she noticed the huge black star edged with gold leaf, and could just make out the outline of a dragon. She began to relax and laughed at herself as she took a step inside.
Her vivid imagination began a journey as she watched the dragon stretched out across the star. Fluffy clouds came into view and Maia could almost feel the warmth from bright sunshine. She thought about golden goblets filled with warming liquid and platters of food from the Gods.
She had been brought up with her parent’s passion for Greek mythology, but for her the spirit world called and she read everything she could on the subject.
Maia’s family was accustomed to an opulent life by virtue of inherited money. Technically, this castle was no different to other homes they had around the world. However, on this occasion, her father had won it in a roulette game on the French Riviera.
The owner couldn’t really afford to lose it, but he’d placed a bet he couldn’t cover and the castle was his only option. He was matter of fact about it when her father won and, to save his pride, implied he was glad to be shot of it and its chequered history.
Her parents decided to move in at the end of the summer. If all went well, they would spend Christmas here. The castle possessed all the usual opulence of the exorbitantly wealthy, and her parent’s loved it instantly. Maia was indifferent and accustomed to their whims. After all, she and her elder sister Alcyone were named after the daughters of Atlas. She was thankful hers was Maia and not Electra, Taygete, Merope, Celaeno, or Sterope. Just imagine living with those monikers!
Maia was suddenly aware of the almost silent footsteps behind her. It was her sister, who took a childlike pleasure in trying to frighten her. Well, she would not react and without turning said,
“Hi, Alcy, I didn’t expect you to join me. I thought you’d be up to your eyes sorting out all your things.”
“I hate it! Whatever possessed our folks to spend time in this cold hellhole? Bavaria of all places, and we were having such a wonderful time on the French Riviera. I just loved Monte-Carlo. All those gorgeous studs to pick from.” She sighed dramatically.
Maia looked at her sister for the millionth time. She was only a year older, but they were chalk and cheese. Whilst Alcy busily searched for the next male conquest wealth bought easily, Maia looked for her next food fix. Her sister was the stereotypical English rose size twelve, whilst Maia was nearly fourteen stone. Overhearing her parents discussing their ‘mistake’ in having two children hadn’t helped.
“Oh, I love it here Alcy. Yes, it’s a bit chilly with the stone walls, but we have roaring fires for warmth and the atmosphere is awesome.”
“Everything is awesome to you fats, even the bad plumbing. How many times have we wanted a hot bath in the last couple of days only to find the water lukewarm? I’ll just die do you hear me? I’ll just die.”
“Stop being a drama queen sis, it’s not that bad. We’ve only been here a few days. Even this crypt has its own sort of charm. Look at the colouring around you and just soak up the atmosphere.”
“You’re macabre, fats. How can you call this … this … mausoleum of a place, atmospheric? Yuk” She finished with a wave of her hand indicating everything in sight.
“I find it quite comforting now I've got used to it,” Maia said quietly.
“You wouldn’t want to spend the night here though, would you?” Alcy had a challenge to her tone
“It can’t be that bad.” Maia considered the possibilities of it.
“Right then, I challenge you to spend the night here on Halloween which is coming up at the end of the week. If you spend a full night here, I will give you £5000 from my savings. If you chicken out at any time during the night, then you will owe me £5000 from yours. Is that agreed?”
“Clucking already? You would spook anything here, ugly bug.” Alcy grinned.
“Not at all, sis. I was thinking of making it £10 000, if you agree.”
“Really? Wow, okay then, it’s a deal.”
They turned to leave, but before she did so, Maia paid her respects to all who resided, both living and dead. For a moment the hairs raised on her arms; excitement or fear she wasn't sure but All Hallows Eve was definitely going to be a night to remember.
© TKGeering 20/03/16
So there you have it my little chickadees. I shall be smothering FaceBook with it as soon as it's published. Begging, annoying, hustling, for shares because I have no shame :-)