The Vampire’s Grave
November is a transit month in my mind. There is the build up to Halloween in October then by December the focus is on the festive season. November seems to be cold and empty and disappears far too soon. My friend Richard used November as his opportunity to prepare for a busy working period after a hectic October. That is if you could consider what he does ‘work’ as he claims to be a Podcaster and YouTuber or something of the like. I have known him since I was at school and despite his very good GCSE and subsequent A-level results, he never really settled into a regular job. With the advent of the much easier production of audio and video to get onto the Internet he found his niche. Not that made him much money, and he topped up his income with bar jobs, and the occasional stint delivering takeaway food.
Mr Benstoke’s Passion
Benjamin’s father owned a newsagent that was down the road from the big old Victorian museum. He would go every holiday but it was when he was old enough to go on his own that his relationship with the museum blossomed. Every Saturday morning he would help set up all of the newspapers for delivery and then be at the door to the museum from the minute it opened.
The Crescent Marked Man
The child clothed in his thick nightgown crawled across the forest floor, the dew soaking the cloth and making his knees and wrists wetter and colder. He started to feel tired and scared. There was not a soul anywhere to be found this deep into the forest but somehow, he was here. Alone. He kept crawling, looking for something, anything that wasn’t cold and wet.
The Cults of Mars
Nobody can hear a scream in the vacuum of space, or so they say. In fact I completed one of my Ancient Culture Finals on a Twentieth Century piece that said just that. I’m pretty sure it was this that helped me scrape through my Archeology and Ancient History degree. Not that it made a great deal of difference in the long run. The jobs available on Gentaru for Archaeologists are few and far between, it’s a relatively newly inhabited planet. I’m fourth generation here and my family were by no means early settlers. However, despite the lack of genuine need for my skills, my passion superseded the very sensible advice given by my father.
Train of Thought
The gentle rocking of the train carriage slowly roused the old man from his sleep. As he gradually woke strands of his thin grey hair fell across his furrowed, worn forehead. He pushed his round gold rimmed glasses back up his long thin nose with his left index finger and allowed his eyes to readjust to the strange light in the carriage. He looked down at his right hand and noticed a small blue ticket in between his finger and thumb.
You called on me
The cabin in the woods had been abandoned for years, but one night, a candle burned in the window. It sat flickering into the dark, deserted and chaotic crowd of bitter trees. The intermittent rustle of the low breeze through the branches were inaudible inside the damp and inhospitable shack. It’s walls oozed neglect and made the air heavy with a thick earthy stench.
When I was very young my family lived in on a council estate in South Yorkshire. My father worked in a factory and had done since he left school, mum never worked, they had married straight from school and she had fallen into the role of home maker. My older brother came along after a couple of years then me.
- Top Story - January 2022
The Owl of St BarnabasTop Story - January 2022
We lived in the city when I was a child in the 1980s. It was and old industrial city that hadn’t changed much since the 1800s. There were new buildings here and there but that was in the centre, where I grew up much of the old mills and warehouses still stood alongside the old tenement buildings. We lived in one of them. It had been converted in the 1950s but it still looked tired. My parents had done a great job making it homely but to a young boy it’s lack of outdoor space was always a problem. There was no green space around us for me to play in and though on Sundays, when they were both off work, my parents would try their best to find me somewhere to play it was short lived. During the week there was nothing for me, especially during the school holidays. As I got older I began to wander and soon I found the only grass anywhere near me. The churchyard of St Barnabas’ became my quiet place, my countryside.
When I was a child my father took a new position in his firm. It was a promotion of sorts and brought him more money but the consequences were that my younger brother and I were moved hundreds of miles north of where we had both been born, where all our friends were, where everything we knew was. I think it was a little harder for me, I was eight, David, my younger brother was only 5 and had been in school for a lot less time than I had. I’d got my friendship groups and in the blink of an eye it was gone.
Foot Hammock Anyone?
One of the things about not getting diagnosed till you’re an adult and then subsequently ignoring your diagnosis is that you compound your terrible ADHD habits and assume that everyone is just like you. The truth is that they aren’t. The stuff you’re doing isn’t what the person next to you is doing, well it might be but for the sake of this let’s say it isn’t.