I am mostly using Vocal as a place to collect my short stories and ideas.
The Kelpie (Part Six)
Part Six - My Self When I smashed the kitchen window, a shard of glass stuck in my bandaged hand. It hurt. Red blossomed on the dressing. I was getting quite good at cursing at this point. I hauled my bag out after me, and pelted up the drive and down the road to the beach.
The Kelpie (Part Four)
My baby brother dangled from her jaws, blood trickling from where a fang pierced his arm. When I reached forward, she jerked back away from me, out of my reach, her eyes wide and accusing. She was poised to run, her mane whipping and her hooves churning the sand to mud where it mixed with the baby's blood. Her jaw tightened. I heard a brief crunch, and I winced. I begged her to give him back but she wheeled around and galloped away from me down the beach. I tried to run after her, but it was like trying to run in water. Then I was trying to run in water - the waves were coming higher, which only meant she flew all the faster. I screamed after her.
The Kelpie (Part Two)
Part Two - The Runner It had been impossible to tear myself away from the strange horse. I didn't know if I would see it - her - again. Eventually, she threw up her head, ears pricking and nostrils flaring, exactly the way regular horses do when they see something very dangerous. (Like, for instance, a carrier bag caught in a hedge.) She pulled away from me, her curiously wide, flat hooves dancing back delicately over the stones. In a moment she was on firm ground, turning her rump to me and cantering away into the waves. Weird. I thought the tide had been further in than that. With a jolt, I realised how much light had left the sky. A heartbeat later I heard my mum's voice calling me.
The Kelpie (Part One)
Part One - Apollo I was nine when I met the kelpie. People think, if you live on the coast of Cornwall, you must spend a lot of time at the beach. You are probably thinking of an adventurous waif with the Cornish sea in her eyes. You're painting a picture of her in your head right now, I can tell. Her hair is fair to start with, and bleached further by sun and salt until it is lighter than her nut-brown tan. She's been able to swim since she could walk. She is out in all weathers, surefooted on the rocks and at home around boats.
I'd like you to meet my dog. She's a staffy-cross. Most staffies you see are stumpy-legged and barrel-shaped. But this one is leggy. She has a ridiculous metabolism, even after being neutered, and she never seems to gain weight. If she manages to get into the kitchen bin and eats something that disgarees with her, she starts to look disturbingly ribby very quickly. She's genetically inclined to be muscly, and all that brawn is covered in a thin layer of soft, glossy velvet.
Blood, Honey, Salt (Part 4)
Note: This story is part of a series. Tomorrow: The Scientist’s Daughter Careful questions lead you to the King’s library, where you find the man you are looking for. He is slowly sorting books and sliding them onto shelves with pained hands.
Blood, Honey, Salt (Part 3)
Note: This story is part of a series. Later: The Milk-Nurse What instinct prompted you to lie? You had done it proficiently. You told them how you had stood at the window (grieving the King’s passing, of course) and preparing to bear the news.... When you looked down and saw the lad down there on the rocks. Now they must go and look for him, find him and bring him home, before the tide carries him away.
Blood, Honey, Salt (Part 2)
Note: This is part of a short series. I've put links to the others at the end of this one, if that helps. Warning: The character in this one is a nasty piece of work who hates women. If assault is going to be a difficult topic for you, proceed with caution.