Death Dances in the Shadows: Wyndwrayth Chapter 3 excerpt.

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At first, Stuart thought he saw something move in the mirk below but he couldn’t be sure at this distance. He stood there frozen to the spot, as he peered into the shadows, senses on alert, trying to verify his perceived vision. ‘Did I imagine that, or is there really something down there,’ he mused and exhaled. He was about to give up and move along the landing, to the next room, when something caught his eye in the corner, by the bottom of the staircase. ‘It’s a dog, or something,’ his mind said to him but it inconveniently added a rider. ‘Yes, fine but whose dog would that be, on a deserted island?’ Now his imagination went into overdrive for a moment, running every unlikely scenario it could conjure: ‘It’s a Werewolf, a Morlock, or the Devil himself,’ his racing mind suggested before he regained control of its wilder flights of fancy. ‘Get a fucking grip Stuart, it’s most likely just the wind, blowing loose leaves around, or a rat….. most likely. So, let’s get on with it and get back to the tent, for something to eat and stick a plaster on this thumb.’

The thought of food seemed to have the desired effect.  He moved on down the landing, checking door handles and giving doors a swift kick. The third door remained the only one to open as he approached a small wooden door unlike the rest. ‘Hmm maybe to the tower? Bet it’s locked.’ Despite the threat of an imaginary Werewolf, Stuart was finding this investigation of the old house, quite exciting and secretly hoped this one would open, so he could climb up to the top of the tower.

“Now let’s see what secrets lie beyond that final door,” he impatiently grunted. ‘There must be something in the air, a spore, or something like that but my imagination’s just running riot in this place,’ Stuart thought, as he slowly reached down for the final handle, which looked well worn. Then, he noticed an old key in its lock.  It moved smoothly, releasing the levers with a barely perceptible ‘clunk.’ He grasped the well-used brass door knob and turned it.

“Open Sesame Bun,” he demanded as he turned it. Surprisingly, the door slid smoothly open, as if it had been well oiled, for many years. As it opened a wave of warm humid air rushed eagerly over him. Suddenly, Stuart felt he was doing something wrong by entering the tower uninvited. He quickly scanned the area to make sure that nobody was watching, before he took the first step inside.

He stood, transfixed by the sight of a spiralling stairway, ascending into the semi darkness. For a moment a faint green glow emanated from above, then was extinguished. ‘What….!?’ He clicked his torch on and shone it upwards….. ‘Nothing. I must have imagined it….. this place is getting to me,’ he thought.

He only had two choices, go upwards, or leave, re-locking the door, hoping against hope that it would be enough to keep a pack of inquisitive Scouts out. He wavered, ‘You’re here now, so don’t hang around, just get on with it and climb, unless you want to come back tomorrow?’ He looked at the cold dark grey steps, as they made their way up the tower. ‘You could always go and have a look at Room 3 and knock it on the head until tomorrow, it’s not like you’re camped miles away.’ He looked at his watch, it was later than he thought.  The time seemed to have raced while he’d stood still and it was already becoming gloomy. There’s no rush, Stu,’ he interceded forcefully, ‘time to retire to the tent and return in the morning, after breakfast, all bright eyed and bushy tailed.  After all, you’ve got the downstairs to check out yet…’

Argument over, Stuart turned, stepped out onto the landing, closed and locked the door behind him. By the time he reached outside, night was almost upon him and he struggled to find his way along the path to his tent, getting snagged by several brambles along the way. Then he emerged into the frosty light of the rising moon, which lay upon the glade, illuminating his tent.

“Full tonight,” he stated and turned to have one final look at tomorrow’s target, the tower, which was now bathed in a cold silvery light of gossamer mists, ascending into the crisp dark blue air of another clear, moonlit night sky.

 

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Death Dances in the Shadows: Wyndwrayth – Chapter 2 excerpt

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During this last summer, he’d spent a great deal of time, fishing from this boat, holding one sided conversations with ‘her’ and as a bonus, he’d also eaten an awful lot of Trout for his evening meals. However, today the rods had been left at home and the maps had come out.

“Different kind of thing today,” he informed her, as he climbed aboard and put his rucksack down in a secure place, still easily accessible from the ‘Captain’s Chair.’ Nick had set his own rules, ‘for conducting oneself on the water’ and as pretentious as that was, the humour that it engendered was worth it. There were only three boats that plied the lake and they were rarely on the water together but that made no difference.

“Standards have to be maintained,” he said loudly, as Venezuela sedately made her way out of the boathouse at 5 miles per hour, with him standing stiffly, like some kind of crazy figurehead, jokingly giving the stiff right armed Nazi salute.

Ahead lay Fog Island and for some unknown reason, his heart was beating a little bit faster as the mist shrouded island drew ever closer. He had to circle the island carefully twice before he found a spot to tie up on.  There was nowhere remotely possible except on it’s far side, facing the sheer cliffs rising from the lake. Even the spot he’d found meant he’d have to leap for it……. Giving himself the customary one wet foot:

“Shit!”

When he was sure that everything was secured, he grabbed the rucksack, with its map and provisions, slung it across his shoulders and headed in shore. At the tree line Nick turned and cast a look back across the lake towards the dark, forbidding escarpment before setting off into:

“The dark interior of Fog Island,”

for which he employed a really rough Glaswegian accent, then laughed. Here he was, a mere eight hundred yards across the watery surface from his boathouse but at this moment, it could have been measured in years. A shudder of childish excitement rippled through his body. He recalled the dull glow of light he’d imagined he saw last night, coming from a source deep inside this green and tangled domain. 

“Well, it’s hardly darkest Africa but it is equally deserted, or so I’m led to believe.” The Glaswegian had spoken again and it was now, that Nick realised he would be with him on the island, all day.

He’d barely taken half a dozen steps, when he ran up against the first major problem. Fallen trees and thick vines, seemingly blocked his way at every turn. He quickly realised that he was going to have to walk along the narrow shoreline of pebbles, which dropped steeply away into the lakes depths, until he could find a track that led inland.

“Inland, to what?” He cried out loud, as it seemed to him there was no break in the unforgiving foliage. Fog Island was quite large, as far as lake islands went, measuring roughly eight hundred yards in length, by two hundred and fifty, in width. Nick reckoned that he must have already covered at least half of its length by now, without seeing anything which promised him an easier path into the centre. He was about to give up and head back to Venezuela, when he spied a narrow gap in the tangle of tree limbs and creeping vines.

“Hmm,” he muttered. “Don’t get your hopes up, Nicolas, it’s probably just an animal track,” he said and then, suddenly stopped when he realised it was too wide for a rodent or bird. The island was supposed to be uninhabited and if that was so, how did the whatever it was that made the track, get here? He looked back along the trail, that he’d just taken, to the shoreline and from there, out across the expanse of water beyond. From shore to shore, there was a great deal of rather deep and very cold water, too much for any local animal to traverse, to reach the Island without a boat and there seemed nothing to sustain them anyway.

‘Indigenous?’ Mused Nick but dismissed that proposition, it was hardly the Galapagos. “Aye well, perhaps it’s a long-lost family of Velociraptors, or a wee Welsh Nessie,” he depreciatingly whispered in the rather pitiful Scottish accent. “Rats, plural!” he expounded as if a light had suddenly been turned on. “Of course, now why didn’t I think of that earlier?” Nick stated confidently, as if such a revelation was somehow novel. “Rats,” he said again, as he looked down at the trackway and attempted to estimate their size and number, by gauging the width of the path he was following. “They’re big buggers too,” he muttered, as he walked slowly onwards, his eyes darting from side to side warily….. “and there must be a lot of them….”

As he moved deeper into the hinterland, following this ‘Rat-way,’ Nick noticed that the air grew ever warmer and the humidity was rapidly rising. Underfoot, the ground became increasingly boggy and a thick layer of moss now replaced the slippery, pebbled landscape of the shoreline.  There was a strong smell of mulchified and rotting vegetation in the dead air. Nick was starting to question the wisdom of coming here at all. ‘Maybe I should have told somebody I was going to come here today,’ he considered. ‘It might, after all, have been the wisest choice,’ he cautioned himself as he stepped into what could only be described as the prefect, Fairy Glen.

The red and white caps of Fly Agaric mushrooms, grew abundantly amid the bows of a surrounding copse of Silver Birch trees and in the short grass beside them, what appeared to be thousands of Psilocybe Semilanceata, better known as the liberty cap ‘shroons’ he’d consumed in great numbers, when he was a younger man.

“Look at them all,” he gasped and he bent down to pick a few, for old times’ sake.  In his murky past, the discovery of this number of ‘magics,’ as they were parochially known, meant a couple of V.H.S Videos and a night or two of belly laughs. ‘They were indeed great days,’ Nick thought absentmindedly and smiled.

He didn’t know it at the time but he had inadvertently stumbled onto, what was the old croquet lawn of the once great house and as he looked up and over to the right, there stood the ivy-covered ruins, of ‘Y Wake Gwynt.’ 

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“Wow! So, you really do exist…,” he smiled to himself.

Only a limited amount of dappled sunlight made it through the overlapping branches of the trees, crowding in on the observer, creating an intense feeling of claustrophobia. Nick sat himself down on the nearest piece of flattish land and after rummaging around in his ‘sack, withdrew his trusty old Ordinance Survey Map and laid it out on the mossy grass before him. According to the map and judging everything by the rule of thumb, he reckoned he was almost in the very heart of the island. Nick stopped and looked all around, for any sign of another living soul but nothing moved in the silent space. All around the old lawn was a thicket of knotted ivy and interlocking tree branches, which created the illusion of helpless imprisonment. It was almost as if the gardens, were still being tended by a ramshackle gardener, who had some unspoken ambition, which would be revealed only by the passage of time.

Strangely, as he’d approached the central area, a slight and somewhat sporadic breeze could be detected, drifting in from a South-Westerly direction. Since, this was a more comfortable area of the island, he decided to take his lunch here on this long-lost croquet lawn, before pressing on with his exploration. Taking his time, he ate his egg sandwiches, some biscuits and drank his coffee whilst smoking one of his pre-rolled joints. There was still more than enough time to take a closer look at the ageing mansion, glimpsed beyond ‘the green wall’ that lay between him and the dishevelled stonework, of ‘Y Wake Gwynt.’

Finished, he moved to secure the weighty rucksack into its position on his back and shrugged, to locate the straps that were trying to bite into his shoulders. Then, Nick stopped his struggling as he realised that since he was the only living creature on this island, there was no need to carry it. ‘Unless you account for the apparently massive Rats,’ he thought and just to be sure, secured the sack with the rest of its provisions, high up in a nearby Oak tree. 

“Figure that one out, sucker’s.” He said with a self-satisfied sense of superiority, even though he hadn’t seen one of these imagined adversaries all morning. Confident his supplies were secured, Nick took his first step towards ‘Y Wake Gwynt.’ Eagerly, he sought any place to gain access to its inner sanctum…….

Death Dances in the Shadows: Wyndwrayth Chapter One Excerpt

 

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“I really must go and give that place the once over,” he said, casting his gaze towards the lonely island, which appeared to almost float on the water. Its real name, was Ynys y Niwl. However, in Nick’s mind, his anachronism fit perfectly well and ‘Fog Island,’ seemed to suit it much better than the old Welsh name, which for him was a bit of a mouthful. A constant mist seemed to float amongst the tree tops, making the place seem ever so inscrutable.  In company, if he was trying to be politically correct, he would refer to the rock as “Innis E. Newel,” disrespectfully pronouncing its ancient moniker, as if it were a bloke’s name. However, it served its purpose. The Welsh just wrote it off as, ‘another example of English ignorance,’ laughing at ‘the incomers’ pronunciation. Well it saved all that spitting and throat clearing, which made up much of the Old Welsh language. Nick took one last toke on his joint, then got back on his feet and stretched his back.

“Ooof!” He exclaimed as a couple of the vertebrae in his spine clicked back into place. “Oh yeah, that’s the way you do it,” he sighed, then chuckled as he broke wind. “Time to put Venezuela back in her boat house.”

When he’d originally discovered there was a vessel in the boathouse, Nick could hardly believe it. At first, he reckoned it was probably a derelict but on unlocking the access door, there, sitting sedately on the water, was ‘June.’ She was a beautiful old lady, once bedecked in polished wood from head to toe, this Grande D’am, simply spoke to him. “Cooool,” he’d remarked in amazement, as he gazed in wonder at her just floating there in the dark water. She needed a great deal of repairs. Her woodwork and the metal fitments, leather and enamel work, were all in serious need of some renovation but during the two years since his mothers’ death, ‘June,’ became the positive therapy he needed as he brought her back to life.

“You and me’s goin’ explorin’ tomorrah,” he informed the boat, as he lovingly stroked her refurbished bodywork. Then, he slowly cast his eyes back towards the letters on the stern of this gem and there it was, ‘Venezuela.’ He had changed her name, from ‘June,’ almost as a first act of ownership. ‘June’ sounded like a name from the thirties, authentic to her build but hardly inspiring. When he’d looked at the lines of this elegant, yet exotic creation for the first time, he’d simply commented, “No, you need something a little more imaginative!” His mind had slipped into overdrive, looking for that elusive, enigmatic, yet pleasingly suitable, alternative name. During those next few days, the name of the motor launch had many incarnations, none of them quite pictorial enough, until one day, he heard a song on the radio, being performed by a woman from Canada called Rita Connelly, whose song and title just felt right.

“Venezuela,” he’d said, “I like it!” It was a quirky enough name, one which maintained Nick’s vision of himself as an artistic man and it seemed to just trip off his tongue, as he’d repeated it, over and over again. “Venezuela.” He’d said for about the twentieth time. “Yeah, that’s it!” He’d emphatically intoned, an air of finality in his voice and then, as if to prove the point to himself. He’d said it again,

“Venezuela.”

Even as the word was leaving his lips, he’d seen images of a warm azure blue ocean and an ice-cold beer, or two. “Venezuela! Yes, that suits you much better. You may have been built in the Thirties but you’re here now. ‘June’ was just altogether too ‘Famous Fivey’ for my liking …..” Smiling at these memories, the boat secured in her house, he casually made his way back down the gravel path towards the kitchen door. It was only a two-minute walk and to this day, he still couldn’t believe his luck. He was now the owner of a fantastic cottage, with a vintage motor launch thrown in to sweeten the deal.

Death Dances in the Shadows: Wyndwrayth Chapter One excerpt.

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As he took his first couple of steps outside, Nick could feel the first bite of winter on the westerly wind blowing directly into his face. It was coming straight off the cold grey mountains and there was nothing in the twenty-eight miles between their lofty peaks and the coast, to interrupt the flow, or warm up the air. He squinted a little, his eyes watering as he looked across the lake towards its island.

‘It’s time to go in,’ he thought, rising from the stone seat and turning towards the cottage. Then, he paused for a moment and raising his face to the sky, he turned and took a long, deep and measured breath in through his nose. There was something familiar in the tang, something that went far beyond the all-pervasive aroma of the Kelp beds at low tide and the salty sea, which was just a few hundred yards beyond the lake. Curious, he took in another long breath and held on to it, for a little more analysis. Now, as Nick released the breath, he suspected he could detect a hint of rain within the sample.

‘Sniffing the wind,’ as he called it, was as good a forecast as any other, in predicting the local weather. It had proved far more accurate than any of the generalisations that flowed like a river of conjecture from the Television presenters. He had learnt in the past few years that dependent upon the wind direction, a quick snort could generally predict with 80% accuracy, whether it was worth beginning an outside task today, or not. It was always better to wait a day or two, to avoid a deal of frustration, when inclement weather brought proceedings to a grinding halt. The few summer visitors who made it out here to the northern tip of Anglesey, often liked to call this kind of thing, ‘Country Ways.’ It was a mystery to them how these, ‘bumpkins’ were often correct.

He folded his arms as some scant protection against the worsening weather and cast his eyes up towards the ominously darkening clouds, flowing off the distant peaks like some kind of metaphorical lava, spewing from an invisible volcano in the heavens. He observed them as they raced past, trying to estimate the rate of knots they were moving. The grey mass was being propelled by a strengthening breeze, which had started the day as a gentle lilt but had been gaining velocity all morning and long since become a gusting wind. As the sun inexorably rose higher into the dark, cloudy sky and the land warmed up a little, so the wind increased and grew ever colder.

“Looks like there are going to be less and less of these mornings from now on. I reckon sitting out here, in a dressing gown and some tatty old slippers, is over for another year.” He grudgingly opined, sighed and turned to head back inside Bethyn Bryn. This day dawned every year but Nick never found, that it was any less of an annual bummer.

“I declare this autumn …. over,” he pompously stated, whilst closing the back door as if to shut the weather out until the next spring.

The warmth from the central heating hit his senses like a velvet wave and the desire to spend the remainder of the morning indoors, rose on his list of priorities. Standing there by the bay window, with the cold world outside, Nick casually looked at the small motor boat he’d tied securely to its Capstan, now bobbing around in the choppy waters of the lake. He’d strategically placed several old rubber tyres along his refurbished quay, to prevent any damage occurring to his new ‘Lady Friend,’ as she bobbed around in the water.

“Shit!” He cursed, as he realised the awful truth. ‘Now, I’ll have to reopen the boathouse and put her away again. Was it too much to ask for a few hours of peace and quiet, to partake of a little fishing?’ Pleading to the weather gods was generally a futile pursuit but Nick did it anyway, while watching the dead leaves by the quay begin to pile up against a long neglected drystone wall, in drifts.  It was no use, he would have to put the boat away. Sighing, he turned away. His grandmother’s, ‘Better safe than sorry,’ mantra that he remembered from his childhood, which resonated with deeper meanings, came to mind. It was as if those four words came from somewhere within the depths of his subconscious but on giving it a little more thought, he considered correctly, that it was closer to the barely perceptible but omnipresent, ‘galactic hum.’

“But first…..”

Nick, carefully took the top off his coffee and reached for his stash box. He considered briefly where he was going to sit but as usual, plumped for his Lazy Boy recliner, permanently positioned in the bay window, overlooking the lake with its little island. As he casually rolled himself another joint, his third already this morning, which considering he’d only been awake for barely ninety minutes, this was indeed going some, even for him.  He calmly lit his latest ‘hand rolled cigarette’ and sitting in the ridiculously comfortable American sized armchair, his mind drifted away on leaden wings of the Marijuana ‘high,’ allowing an overpowering sense of security to flow over him.

“A touch more research, me thinks and this Coffee’s damn good,” he opined, reached over to pick up his iPod and flicked on some Beatles to get himself going, after his almost transcendental garden experience.

“O.K, Heddi let’s see what you’ve got for me, on this fair morning,” he said with Arthurian grandeur. His finger’s operated automatically as he typed in his Username and Password into the computer. Then, while he waited for her to fully boot up, he took another toke on his half smoked ‘dooby’ and washed it down with another mouthful of the surprisingly delicious coffee. “Right then, let’s see if you and me, can find another revelation,” he enquired and lazily typed: Anglesey Post archive+Llyn Isaf, in the Search box.

Yesterday, his attempt to glean a little more information regarding the history of Bethyn Bryn, had yielded little he wasn’t already aware of. He’d learnt of the estimated year of her construction, her previous owners and their family members. There seemed little else to glean from the census and council records, so it was time to look further. He’d decided last night, while watching The Papers on the BBC’s 24 Hour News Channel, that he’d have a look at some of the local press archives for something less dry. A click here and a click there, opened up the world he’d been seeking all along.

“At last, it’s not a scientific project, or anything heavy,” he said to ‘Heddi,’ and started to read. His eyes fell on a file named, ‘Mysterious Death’s and Curious Disappearance’s, 1900 – 2007 inclusive.’ Intrigued, he opened it and peered down at the long list of headlines. Then he saw a search box for the file and typed in ‘Bethyn Bryn.’ It threw up an article which read:

Mysterious Black Water Claims Two More Souls by Elrond Peters

 

            The deep black waters of Llyn Isaf have struck again. This time claiming two more lives from the locality. Local farmer, Mr Bryn Hughes, 56 of Bethyn Bryn and Mr Jack Pritchard, 58 of Ty Croes. The two men were reportedly searching the lake and its mysterious island for Mr Hughes’ son David, 20 also lately of Bethyn Bryn.

            I reported the disappearance of David Hughes only two months ago. His boat was found floating in the reeds off the island, Ynys Y Niwl after spending a night fishing on Llyn Isaf. The police put his disappearance down to falling overboard into the lakes freezing black waters and drowning, like so many have before.

            Mr Bryn Hughes, inconsolable at his loss, refused to give up hope that his sons body may yet be found. He and his friend, Mr Jack Pritchard continued to search the lakeshores and the island. According to the police, it was on one such venture last Friday, in Mr Pritchard’s inflatable dinghy, that they went missing.

            So far, no evidence of either men or their boat, has been found. Yet again, the police have filed this one under ‘accidental capsize and drowning.’ Their deaths bring the total number of those consumed by the dangerous black waters of Llyn Isaf since 1900, to 146. 

            A spokesman for Lord Cuthbert and Lady Cleaver, the present owners of the estate which includes Llyn Isaf, Ynys Y Niwl and the lakeshore and island properties, has stated that the lake will continue to be closed to all local people except for permitted shoreline fishing. However, those renting properties on the lakeshore have historic legal boating and fishing rights and can continue to use them. They have erected signs to inform and warn the public of the rules and dangers of the lake. In addition, the area is patrolled by Seth Gordon to ensure compliance and life rings are available at several points around the lake.

            Mr Bryn Hughes is survived by his father Tecwen Hughes, 78 who remains living in Bethyn Bryn. Mr Jack Pritchard leaves a teenage daughter.

Death Dances in the Shadows: Wyndwrayth – Prologue excerpt; The Year 1016

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Last winter, as all the remaining meat began to fall off my ever more visible bones, I thought that I was going to die. One day, whilst out on a futile scavenge for something to eat, I found a dead child, poorly buried in the snow. My hunger had reached the point of eat or die. It compelled me to release the remainder of the dead child from the snow’s frozen embrace and take it home with me. The body seemed to have been in its tomb for only one or maybe two days, as it was more, or less intact. The animals had barely troubled it.

After gutting the little boy and leaving his offal for the beasts, I ate his liver raw, then I hung the rest of the body in the Fogou to season. By this time, I’d been starving for so long, that I could hardly remember my name, Gideon.  That child was a gift that saw me through.  It made me swear to the Gods that I would not spend another winter on those islands.

I don’t recall now how many men I had to kill, to secure my passage off Flotta but I knew I would never be returning. Olaf Gunderson is not a man you would wish to anger, lest you wish to receive a visit from “The Eagle.” I was ever mindful of that possibility when I joined the crew of “The Red Witch” and prepared to depart from The Northern Isles.

As the Sea God’s would have it, The Red Witch was blown off course by endless storms and when the last barrel of fish was emptied, being unable to fish in the high seas, we all began to die of hunger. I was so weak, that I had several of what the ships navigator nee healer, called, ‘Head Fury’s.’  I oft wished for death to take me, anything to release me from my suffering. I longed for the eternal darkness to consume my aching hunger, before madness overwhelmed my being.

So, out of a desperation, I prayed to The Keepers of Ragnarok, beseeching them to deliver my soul to the Gates of Valhalla, so I may be judged by Odin. To be either rewarded, or punished, as he saw fit. I knew this was a risky path to take but surely, my befuddled mind reasoned, it couldn’t be worse than the anguish of wasting away on a salty ocean….

 

Death Dances in the Shadows: “Wyndwrayth”

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Finally, it’s finished and available from all the usual outlets and direct from the publishers @:

https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/779278

This was a really intense thing to write, all the characters had their own voices, flaws and idiosyncrasy’s and sometimes they informed me of where they were taking this story. Believe me, sometimes that kind of thing can be somewhat disconcerting. It got so bad, that at times they even invaded my dreams! The problem is that sometimes, the dreamscape and your novel, are not comparable on this level. On more than one occasion, a whole load of gigantic bouncy Marshmallows and a couple of Dayglow Klingon’s, were the main player’s invading Wyndwrayth in the night’s acid plot. They were not useful!

All that kind of stuff, is just a garbage dump and should definitely not be interpreted, as a guide to any future plot lines. Outside of the Star Trek domain, there are few opportunities for a Klingon and stable, long-term employment, is almost unknown. As for the marshmallow’s, that’s one for the ages…..

Well, it’s here now and I hope you enjoy it. “Powderfinger,” was a tale set in and around one of the deserted areas of a major city, in The North West of England. An area I knew well, in all its guises.

“Wyndwrayth” on the other hand, is set in a basically deserted area of North Wales. It draws on my life here, it’s history and the landscape for inspiration. It took longer than I originally anticipated because about half way through the first draft, I realised that I wasn’t really ‘feeling’ it, on any appreciable level. I simply wasn’t getting creeped out, frightened or even revolted for that matter, on any level that I consider to be essential when writing this flavour of head food. In addition, the tale was eating itself…which is something that was anticipated by my editor when I ran it by her.  I knew best of course and continued fruitlessly for almost a year before having to bow down and kiss her feet.  The ignominy!

So instead of attempting a cut and paste, job, I started the whole thing over again. It is a much more interesting story and I hope you will enjoy reading it. I suspect, that Nick Swann, quite possibly survived the process, a little better than I did.

Now that “Wyndwrayth” is completed. I’m taking a few weeks off and refreshing my existential creativity by working on “W900.” I have the bones of the next Nick Swann investigation in my cranial shaker and will begin it soon….. once I’ve run it by Zinzan! I’ve learnt my lesson!

Death Dances in the Shadows: Four Star Review by Literary Titan for Wyndwrayth!

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Wyndwrayth by Keller Yeats proves to be both interesting and captivating as the reader follows the central figure, Nick Swann, as he bumbles through his semi-isolated real world life and slowly discovers the existence of a second, more deadly world, all around him. These two parallel worlds slowly converge as you turn the pages to reveal what is undoubtedly a cleverly researched horror novel yet still containing moments of strong humour and absurdity.

The first passage of the novel only offers the briefest glimpse of what is to come as it describes events of 1016 in a place named Flotta in the Orkney Islands of Scotland. Much later a more sinister story is revealed, as the full impact of ghosts and ghouls condemned to a life of perpetual purgatory wreaking havoc from their haunted house for a 1000 years follows.

After this brief immersion into Norse mythology the story abruptly introduces the daily life of Nick as a self-styled geek, working occasionally on business research for associates at Bangor University, from an inherited cottage on the island of Anglesey in Wales.

Despite apparent excesses of marijuana, brandy and coffee, Nick still manages to investigate further into the mysterious local occurrences, drownings and inexplicable disappearances which all combine with the mythical backdrop to reveal the cold stark reality of evil forces at work on his doorstep.

As the chapters proceed the two sides are drawn ever closer to their inevitable confrontation – for the outcome you will have to read for yourself, but I quite enjoyed this ethereal mesh of myth and contemporary life. As the two classically configured worlds of good and evil come closer together will Nick and Wendy survive or will they pass into the world of the undead? The only spoilers I will offer here are that if you are offended by strong language and an occasional blood-letting scenario then turn away, but you would be missing an riveting story that I could not put down.

Initially, I did find Nick’s apparent excessive talking to himself annoying; but ultimately I felt like this added to his slightly eccentric and bohemian character. Wyndwrayth by Keller Yeats offers an enthralling well-researched read. The author is able to methodically create an enthralling character, place him in a vivid world, and face him against an enthralling antagonist. If you enjoy stories about myths and legends then you will certainly enjoy this novel.

Pages: 739 | ASIN: B078ZM1R17

Buy Now From Amazon.com

Postcards from the Wastelands

The Worst Summer Ever!

“More Trident anybody?” Asked the new P.M. hopefully. 

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 “No thank you, Terreza. I doubt, that I could even manage another tiny mouthful and that Plutonium topping, is simply darling but I regret that I must decline,” answered the rather plump guest, defensively.

 I’m having a certain amount of trouble, with “The Labour Party” at the moment. What with The Jeremy of C, endlessly playing Militant Tendency 2,  “The Hatton’s Revenge” on his Amstrad Door Stop – personalised brick stylee computer – the ghost of Uncle Joe is rising from the remains of his fetid political party, inevitably leading to a repeat of the early 80’s.

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“Prepare thi’ sen, for a lifetime of opposition, mi ‘arties.”

O.K, so I am now a member of The Green Party…….

Don Didondom Trump, America’s Boris J is talking endless crap over the pond and with this place being held hostage to fortune, by a bunch of Brexit morons, who sadly believe that they can have their cake and eat it …… twice.

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 “Jeebus, we’re all fucked.” 

 Add to that the utterly crappy weather and this has got to be:

“The worst summer……. ever!”

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Ship of fools…..sail away from me!