Her Reading Room – Flash Fiction

LQ4d15U-9780She had a reading room all her own, filled with books she collected over the years. Dusty old tombs from the library book sales. Discarded books that she wanted to give a home to. Unloved books that needed the warmth of a loving soul that would give them new life.

She had new books. Crisp pages and unmarked paper. Stiff spines and smelling of glue and wood pulp.  The old books smelled of time and dust and people. The new held the smell of adventure.

She had picture books and encyclopedias. Fiction, non fiction, how to books. She had books on gardening and sewing. Books on Asian culture and mythology; Greek and Nordic mythology. Fairytales ruled a top shelf that was colorful and arranged like a child would.

Some of her shelves held neat rows of books from a series, while others were arranged by her favorites. One shelf was devoted to books she had plans to read. That shelf was getting more and more full as time went on and she visited more book sales. This book thing was an affliction in some ways.

She had her big open windows to let the gorgeous sun in with a comfortable chairs set so that whatever her mood, the light was just right for reading. The shelves themselves were big and filled one whole wall. In the back corner she had her writing desk and a big bulletin board she frequently had filled with thumbtacked pages of some idea she was writing. The cork board was always cluttered with notes and ideas.  However having the books around her and the dark corner, made writing so much more simple since she couldn’t get distracted.

An up to date sound system, with speakers that were tucked away, filled the room with music from Debussy to One Republic. It all depended on the mood. Sometimes you need a bit of pop music to read by.

And since there was nothing like having tea or coffee while reading, she always kept an electric kettle filled on a small table with cups and tea and instant coffee. Granted, most of the time her drink of choice was cold by the time she actually finished it. When one met the man of their dreams on page 150, tea became unimportant.

Yes, this room was magical, opening worlds she could only dream, or read, about visiting. Her room became the 10351141_814052365327874_232371573355012167_nTardis.

 

Okay, I was inspired by the image of the personal library, to write a bit of flash fiction about it. And as for the last line, I saw this marvelous picture and it has stuck with me. I get shivers looking at this picture.

Enjoy my rambles, dearies.

Kate

 

Mr. Grinch and Me

charlie brown I've killed itI’m sitting here a little after 6 at night listening to the California rain. The pouring, pouring rain. I’m sipping a glass
(finger and a half) of Crown, feeling rather depressed.  The rain is part of it, but also I’m troubled. I blame it all on Boris who sent me a very long email yesterday. Boris it seems, is my own Mr. Grinch. He doesn’t do Christmas. He doesn’t like all the commercialization of the holiday (cue Charlie Brown and Linus) He doesn’t want his house decorated, thank you very much. He is tired of the holiday already. He doesn’t like the Christmas music that’s been playing since Halloween.  He doesn’t like green. (that coming from my love of forest green nail polish at the holidays)

 

I’m sorry, but I’m a Christmas person. I LOVE Christmas. Not to the point of going overboard. In fact, our tree is very simple and small. Mrs. B puts up our unique and old figurines that are cute and tucked here and there. None of that houses and snow theme that a lot of homes have (though I love that.) We do not have garlands everywhere. There is a wreath on the front gate because Mr. B decided to take what was left from trimming the tree to the correct height and make a wreath, the old dear. It has a gold bow and a red bow on it. Nothing fancy. Yes, we have been playing Christmas music since the 31st of November, but it’s not on all day.

 

Rocky Mountain Christmas

Rocky Mountain Christmas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

So, you can see that I don’t go crazy. But I love the holiday. I love listening to John Denver’s Rocky Mountain Christmas and remembering dancing in our huge living room as a little girl. When I still hoped to be a ballerina. When it was still the 80’s and the 80’s had their own feel. The years of The Carpenter’s Christmas Portrait. When a little girl still wore plaid and corduroy. When my blonde, blonde hair was super girly…. When Barbies and stuffed animals got decorated up and had balls.

 

When I read all the Christmas picture books with my sister. We would sit and read the stack quietly while the record player had our favorite music on. Oh my gosh, that was before cd players and MP3 files.  Would you believe this was long before I ever saw How The Grinch Stole Christmas and Charlie Brown? I actually had never seen those two until I was probably in my late teens. I still adore them though. It’s not Christmas without those two. And The Santa Clause with Tim Allen. And The Holiday with Cameron Diaz and Kate Winslet. And White Christmas with Bing Crosby.

 

Cropped screenshot of Bing Crosby and Danny Ka...

Bing Crosby and Danny Kaye from the trailer for the film White Christmas (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Okay, I have a lot that make it Christmas. Silly things. Childish things. Nostalgic things. But it’s always Christmas.

 

So I don’t understand not really caring, and I find it sad that Boris is a bit of a Mr. Grinch about it.  Poor man.  It makes me want to make cookies for him and to arrive with a bit of Mistletoe in hand. I just don’t know what to do with him. It’s so very sad and makes me want to cry. I’m sure he has no clue about his words doing that to me, but I may tell him. How to take a marvelous holiday and make me want to cry. I don’t think that’s very nice. See, Mr. Grinch!

 

So, I’m curious. Does anyone of you have a Grinch in your close knit of friends or family members? Does it make you a bit sad?

 

Kate

 

 

 

The Castle Logoria – Part One

The inn was old, but charming as the carriage drew up to the lit yard. However, this was no normal inn as it was situated high up the road from the prospering village and at the base of a large, abandoned castle. A castle that was sturdy, but clearly starting to decay and crumble. It was as if the inn had not idea there was something majestic behind it.

The coachman stepped down from the box and opened the carriage door just as the innkeeper, Henri, opened his welcoming doors, sending out more light from the cheery interior. He was the first person Aline saw as the coachman helped her down.

“Welcome, welcome,” the jovial man said. “Come in quickly and we will get you warm.

Before Aline could take a step, a proprietary hand reached out from the coach and stopped her.

“Wait, Aline,” the cultured, but spoiled voice said and a tall, thin man stepped from the coach. Roland Verninac, Baron Rogier, surveyed the inn, a brow raised as his eyes traveled up the castle walls.

“You must come in quickly before the fog and mist settle in,” the innkeeper urged. “Your driver can take the horses around back to the stables. Jean will help you.” Henri motioned for his stable boy.

Both Aline and Roland looked around, and sure enough, a mist was rising from the valley, thickening the shadows. Aline shivered and drew her green cloak closer around her shoulders.

There was an eerie silence all around as the mist sifted closer and for some inexplicable reason, Aline felt a pull to enter not the inn, but the large ornate doors of the castle.

Her ears tuned out her brother and the innkeeper as they directed the stable boy and coachman to take a few necessary satchels and her case down from the coach. She stared, mesmerized by the doors, and involuntarily she moved towards them. One of her hands reached up to clasp the large silver cross on a heavy silver chain and she fingered the cool metal.

Whispers called her. Whispers tugged her closer and closer. All other sounds were tuned out as she stepped up to the doors and rested her palm on the wood. She didn’t hear the should of alarm from the inn yard.

Over and over the whispers called her.

“Aline, sweet child. Come. Come sweet one. Unlock the doors and com in. Come dearest Aline.”

The whispers were in her head. They knew her name. She wanted to scream for the voices to get out of her head. She wanted to push the doors open and do as they commanded. Pushing and pulling, she felt the invisible forces tugging her to the door while her hand on the cross pulled her back.

“Stop it!” She screamed at the voices in her head. “Stop! Stop!”

Suddenly the screaming in her head wasn’t just silent. She started screaming out the prayer she had learned for deliverance.

“Concede, quaesumus, omnipotens Deus, Sanctum nos Spiritum votis promereri sedulis, quatenus eius gratia et ab omnibus liberemur tentationibus, et peccatorum nostrorum indulgentiam percipere mereamur. Per Christum Dominum nostrum. Amen.”

She repeated the words over and over, sobbing, tears streaming down her face as the whispers tried to drown out her words, becoming screams themselves.

A hand gripped Aline’s arm, jerking her away from the door and thrusting the screams back where they belonged. The whispers abated and she stood in the fading light as the mist from the surrounding areas crept into the in yard. Her face was dry and she found that all her screaming and crying, while she thought it visible, had been only in her head. It had all happened in her head.

She shivered violently and heard a soft curse. She looked at the large hand that still gripped her arm and she followed it up to the man who was watching her intently. He was very tall with dark features; deep set eyes, eyebrows that slashed, and a grim mouth. He wore simple clothes, a basic white shirt and dark brown breeches tucked into scuffed black boots that went up to his thighs. Striking. The man was very striking and Aline tried to pull away from his grip, but he held her firmly.

“You need to come away from the door,” he said softly, his tone far softer than she would have imagined with his fierce look.

 

 

…………………………………….To be continued

 

Have I hooked you?  This all came from a very strange dream I mentioned a week or so ago. It gets more interesting, in my opinion, after a time. There is no continued plot, but well, I thought I would see what you all think. It’s not meant to go anywhere other than me having some fun at writing.

Kate

 

 

 

Here We Come A-Caroling

tumblr_mxqqphYSxQ1qkpc62o1_500This year my Christmas music choice has been more melancholy and quiet. Folk with older acoustic and country, with a touch new age.

If you click the picture, you will be taken right to one of my current playlists that is really hitting me this year.

Each year music, like my nail polish choice, changes and depends on my mood. I think last year I was in the oldies Christmas music with forest green nail polish being my choice. This year, due to Boris telling me, “It’s red. It’s always red;” in regards to my nail polish, I am wearing red for him. I was going to go turquoise, but well, I might splurge right at the end of the season. I have to admit, red is rather nice. And my music choice is something you could listen to in a library, or maybe in a cozy bookstore. I was writing in the stacks at my library the other day listening to it. Plopped down on the floor by the poetry, headphones in and scribbling frantically away in my notebook. It’s rather nice.

So, tell me dearies, what kind of Christmas music do you like? Does it change from year to year? Do you start listening to it full force once the holiday season starts? I’d love to know.

Listening on

Kate

Lanterns

Emily Dickinson Lanterns  When I saw this quote from Emily Dickinson, I thought it had to be from a poem  and I wanted to find it. Sadly, it seems to be just a quote. I feel it could have been something marvelous.
I found this wonderful picture, and combined the quote with it, and I think it’s perfect.
It reminds me of Loreena McKennitt‘s song ‘The Mummers Dance,’ and sometimes I feel I need to go looking for myself. What a more romantic way than by lantern light.

Happy Sunday
Kate

Sure, Anyone Can Write, but…

Kate's Bookshelf:

I feel this is so spot on that I said it was ‘Damn straight’ to my parents. It’s rather scary when I think about how spot on it is, too. And yet I can’t change who I am. Read it.

Originally posted on Presents of Mind:

pointI don’t personally know any professional writers, but there’s something about the quote below that describes the temperament of an unemployable (and non-professional) writer like myself. If you write, maybe you can relate to some of it as well.

Psychologists have found out a little bit about the personalities of writers. They are individualists, skeptics, taboo-breakers, mockers, loners; they are undependable and likely to be behind on their rent; they keep irregular hours and have strange friends. Professional writers, like criminals, really live outside society: they have no regular jobs, they come and go as they please, they live by their wits.

Writers in my experience are more inquisitive about a broader range of things than most people; they are more intelligent, more interesting to talk to, and more unconventional in their attitudes. Writers are people who don’t like to work for other people. They have vivid fantasy lives, and…

View original 27 more words

Eve and Noel – Flash Fiction

green-velvet-bow-long-sleeves-1950s-vintage-dress blue-velvet-short-sleeves-1950s-vintage-dressEve and Noel, identical twins in almost every way. Born only a couple minutes apart, Eve on the 24th, and Noel on the 25th, they were named after the holiest of days. Serene and elegant, both women were lovely to look at and calming to be around.

They both attended the Christmas Eve service with their parents. Eve wore a forest green, velvet dress, the skirt full from layers upon layers of tulle, with one of the layers edged in delicate silver, giving a glint as she walked. Her heels were matching velvet, with silver glitter on the four inch heels, twinkling as she walked. She kept with the theme of forest green on her nails, and a huge emerald and silver ring on her middle finger. Silver and green like a diamond Christmas tree, said her father. She had giggled in delight. Every year a specific color stood out for the holiday season. Last year it had been cranberry red, the year before, silver, black, and red.

churchatchristmas_2772351b 6332648515_fbf297138e_zWhile Eve was resplendent in green, Noel was in shades of sapphire blue. They set each other off perfectly with their red gold hair, similar to Rosemary Clooney’s in White Christmas. They were a statement as they walked into the little chapel, arms linked as they made their way to their favorite pew to the delicate strains of “It Came Upon A Midnight Clear.”

Heads turned as watched the two women. Neither of them were proud, but it was impossible to ignore the stir they made.

“Our girls look like models,” their father remarked as he and his lovely wife followed behind their daughters; and it was true.

 

Okay, I wrote this piece of flash fiction last year on Christmas Eve. There wasn’t much of a plot other than velvet dresses and Rosemary Clooney. Enjoy

Kate

Christmas Stories

So the title of this post is rather misleading because I’m not talking stories about Christmas, but books that happen to have Christmas within the pages of the book.  Sadly enough, what first came to mind when I was thinking about this was a romance novel by Lisa Kleypas titled “Suddenly You.”

I love books that have that Christmas theme running through them.  It doesn’t have to take up much of the story, but I love when you draw it in and it is what makes up an intrinsic part of the plot. Maybe a gift from the hero to the heroine. Something personal even though they are at odds with each other.  Maybe it’s the heroine going away to her parents to regroup after being totally befuddled by the hero.  So you have her staying there during the holidays, and her crazy smart sister gives advice that leads the plot on further.

Maybe, like the case of Dear Mr. Knightley, by Katherine Reay, the heroine learns more about herself and being loved and loving others. (I loved the Christmas part in Dear Mr. Knightley.

In Suddenly You, the heroine is a spinster that breaks down and goes to the lavish party being held by her new publisher, a rakish man.  The party is incredible and the hero is sexy, and heroine is sweet, and they finally give in to their desires and decide to do something about it….. I mean sex, by the way.  Lol.  I’m so laughing here because, really, is this what Christmas has boiled down to?  Sex?

I’m just joking because I really do love this part in the book. And in any book where it comes to play.  There is something magical about the holidays, and the attitudes of people.

If I had been having a novel written about me, I went to meet my boyfriend years ago on the holidays.  That was a massive mistake, but it made me who I am now. And I could have probably written some interesting stuff about that holiday.  So long ago, and that said boyfriend is now married to someone else and they have a baby girl. Go figure.

So I’m curious, does anyone have a specific book that has Christmas within the walls of the book that just makes them feel ooey gooey inside?  Harry Potter and the Sorcerer’s Stone has one of my favorite Christmas themes in it. I love the wizards chess and the cloak… (I’m afraid I’m thinking of the movie as well)  And I love the Chronicles of Narnia The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe and the Christmas-y theme in that.

So what book do you love with a Christmas vibe?

Kate