The Magic of the Robin #Spirit #Animal #Encounters #Poetry – Spiritual Sisters – Sisters of The Fey

A while ago I made a new friend in the Botanical Gardens in Cambridge. This sweet robin came and sat beside me on a bench as if he had something important to say to me: this happened shortly before Christmas so perhaps he wanted to impart a Christmas message. At the time, I thought he was so cute and friendly that I wrote a poem about him on my blog: https://mjmallon.com/2019/12/07/colleens-weekly-tanka-tuesday-poetry-challenge-poets-choice/

Symbolism of Robins

These sweet birds are associated with: family, a sense of community, living in the moment, leaving the past behind, the season of spring, rejuvenation,  new beginnings, happiness expressed through song/music, feeling abundant, (in nature, not caring so much for material things,) and being grateful.

Meaning of a robin sighting:

A robin sighting can be  a divine messenger teaching you to protect what you love and learn to live with those who may not be like you. What in your life resembles the robin’s nature? What can you do to change who you are? What can you accept, or perhaps let go of ?

20191202_131518 (1)

A Robin is a symbol of good luck, passion, new beginnings and renewal and sometimes can represent a symbol of wisdom and patience. In my case, I  believe this is what the robin came to teach me. To be patient, to take my time in my writing path and not to get frustrated! To move forward with a sense of joy and energy to leave my past behind and not to regret any previous choices I have made.

Perhaps my little robin came to impart an important message: Believe in Myself and Accept Who I am.

This particular robin features in my new release Mr. Sagittarius – a mixture of prose and poetry and photography which is available to buy on Amazon.

Buying Link: http://mybook.to/MrSagittarius

The first month’s royalties of the ebook will be donated to the Australian bush fires. 

Furthermore, the second in my YA fantasy Series The Curse of Time, Golden healer also mentions a robin too. This will be released later on this year. How strange that a robin plays a part in that novel too, albeit a tiny part!

If you haven’t read the first book in the series The Curse of Time Bloodstone now is the time to do so. It is on #free #promo today 21st February 2020. 

Unsplash_KYxXMTpTzek

 

Here is the link: http://mybook.to/TheCurseofTime

It’s uncanny! This is the second encounter I’ve had with a spirit animal. I count myself as blessed. It wasn’t too long ago that a dragonfly paid me a visit.

It seems that the natural world has become my friend! What a joy that is, especially when the robin came to pay me a visit before Christmas.

Do you have a special connection with a spirit animal?

Please comment below, I’d love to hear your thoughts on spirit animals and any encounters you might have had, past or present.

Cheerio, for now.

This is another post, from Marje @ Kyromagica – Spiritual Sisters. xxx

86870659_2552132831728329_3785461037982023680_n

The Spiritual Sisters are:

Adele Marie Park Author & Personal Blog: Firefly465

Annette Rochelle Aben Author & Personal Blog: Annette Rochelle Aben

Colleen M. Chesebro Author & Personal Blog: Word Craft ~ Prose & Poetry colleenchesebro.com

Debby Gies (aka, D. G. Kaye) Author & Personal Blog: D. G. Kaye, Writer

Marjorie (MJ) Mallon YA/Paranormal Author: mjmallon.com

Book Review: Catling’s Bane by D Wallace Peach #Bookreview

Goodreads Synopsis

In the tiers of Ellegeance, the elite Influencers’ Guild holds the power to manipulate emotions. Love and fear, pain and pleasure, healing and death mark the extremes of their sway, but it’s the subtle blends that hook their victims’ hearts. They hide behind oaths of loyalty and rule the world.

A child born in the grim warrens beneath the city, Catling rues the rose birthmark encircling her eye. Yet, it grants her the ability to disrupt the influencers’ sway. Established methods of civil control disintegrate before her. She’s a weapon desired by those who reign and those who rebel.

To the Influencer’s Guild, she’s an aberration, a threat. They order her death and thus the betrayals begin. One woman protects and trains her, plotting to use her shield to further imperial goals. No longer a helpless child, Catling has other plans. As chaos shakes the foundations of order and rule, will she become the realm’s savior? Or its executioner?

The Rose Shield Tetralogy – a blend of science fiction and fantasy.

Welcome to a world of three moons, a sentient landscape, rivers of light, and tier cities that rise from the swamps like otherworld flowers. A planet of waterdragons, where humans are the aliens living among three-fingered natives with spotted skin. Where a half-blood converses with the fog and the goddess plans her final reckoning.

Follow Catling’s journey as she grows from childhood into the deadly force that shapes the future. She is the realm’s shield, an influencer, assassin, healer, mother, and avenger. And all she wants is to go home.

 

My review:

Catling’s Bane is the first in the Rose Shield series and showcases D. Wallace Peach’s wonderful fantasy writing. It is a character driven story with a young girl: Catling taking centre stage. BUT don’t be fooled into thinking this is a gentle read. It is not. There are influencers at work, who think nothing of killing people, even the youngest members of society are cruelly eliminated for minor crimes, whilst their peers, and family members are ‘influenced,’ to believe that their hangings are no more than a fun day of entertainment.There is a strong political element to the story, with warrens representing the classes of society. Also, there is a sense of wanting to belong, to be part of a caring family, and poor Catling longs for that more than anything: even though her mother isn’t exactly maternal Catling still cares for her.

The beginning was a little difficult to follow due to the large cast of characters. A short introduction to them all would have been welcome.

At times the plot shifted in an unexpected way but the ending had me buzzing for more. The ending was brutal but beautifully written. I couldn’t look away! Oh my!

This is my first introduction to D. Wallace Peach’s novels. I’ve been following her blog for a long while and been impressed by her writing. There is no doubt in my mind that D. Wallace Peach is a talented author.

Beautiful writing in all categories: descriptive, emotive and very entertaining dialogue and I couldn’t help but be invested in Catling’s plight.

#highlyrecommended

My rating: 4.5 stars.

Social Media Links

Authors Websitehttps://mjmallon.com
Collaborative Bloghttps://sistersofthefey.wordpress.com
Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and @curseof_time
#ABRSC: Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club on Facebook
Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17064826.M_J_Mallon

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mjmallonauthor/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mjmallonauthor/

Happy New Year – 2020 News: #Writing #Sequel #Poetry #Prose

Happy New Year!!!

After many moons I ‘m finally making progress on the second in my YA Fantasy series The Curse of Time Book 2 Golden Healer.

It has been a long haul BUT I can begin to see encouraging flickers of light at the end of a very long, arduous tunnel.

Writing a sequel is so hard! No, scratch that, it’s TORTURE.

Why?

  1. My memory isn’t as good as it used to be.  I realised that I’d forgotten some of the minutiae of book one. Sequential aspects, patterns of speech and the like.
  2. Writing a novel isn’t for the faint-hearted. It’s around 80,000 and that’s a lot of words.
  3. Structuring the bloody thing… ugh… when will I ever learn to plot?
  4. Working full-time whilst trying to wrangle it into shape. Masochist.
  5. My imagined final copy is never the final version. Betas read it and you realise you must do more work. The slog is real. It seems interminable. And then SCBWI (Society of Children’s Writers and Book Illustrators) conference goers read parts of it too and have more suggestions for you too.
  6. Then there’s the dreaded B word: Boredom. Yes, it gets to the point were you are so fed up looking at your once treasured words.
  7. Followed by the dreaded D word: Doubt. Who wants to read the bloody thing anyway? It’s such a crock of… miserable… you get the picture.
  8. And the dreaded E word: Experience. I will no longer be a debut. This will be my second novel. Perhaps people will expect more from me? EEK.

Help…

That’s when point 9 comes trotting along before no. 10 to restore my sanity.

9. Stop beating myself with my notebook, pen, keyboard whatever. Take a break. BREAK? What do writers do                 when they long for a break? Rest… NOOF COURSE NOT. In my case, I decided to write a poetry and prose               book.

I told you I’m a masochist!

10. So, now I have a poetry collection to finish and edit too. Double TORTURE. Only joking, this poetry collection              seems easy in comparison to the novel. OR IS IT?

It’s called Mr. Sagitarrius – Poetry, and Prose. It includes various short form poetry, short fiction and my photography images of the natural world: trees, a robin, a dragonfly, plus a couple of images via a young photographer Alex Murdoch – son of Sam Murdoch – who has a lovely blog about cats and crystals: https://samanthamurdochblog.wordpress.com/

Hope you like the title. Please let me know your thoughts…

Titles are interesting, aren’t they? I nearly called it The Magic Golden Willow Tree – Poetry and Prose but decided that was too wordy.

I don’t have a cover yet so….  Image via pixabay – Monfocus.

Here’s the blurb… or what might become the blurb….

Two twin brothers Harold and William love the magic of the natural world.

When Harold dies he leaves a simple memorial request.

Will his brother William and his sister Annette honour it?

Or, will the garden work its magic to ensure that they do.

 

A magical story expressed via an original compilation of poetry and prose

with photographic images.

 

Now, it is possible that this usurper poetry book might come out before The Curse of Time Book 2.

Oh. A race is on, which one will win?

In the meantime, if you haven’t read the first in the series, now’s the time… HURRY! And if you do I’d love some more reviews. I’m creeping up to 20 on Amazon UK. Can you get me from 18 to 20? 

Buy Book: myBook.to/TheCurseofTime

Unique Selling Point: Unique, Imaginative, ‘Charming, enchanting and richly layered this is purely delightful.’

“This delightful book will appeal to teens and young adults who love stories filled with magical crystals, dark family curses, and mysteries waiting to be solved around every corner. Each chapter leads you on a journey of discovery where Amelina earns the right to use three wizard stones to reset the balance of time and finally break the curse that holds her family hostage. A captivating tale!” – Colleen M. Chesebro (Editor)

 

 

Ryder: The enigma – The Curse of Time #Characters #Fantasy #YA #Paranormal

 

Who is Ryder? And more importantly is he a good guy or a villain?

Check out his photos and make up your own mind…

 

 

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

 

Images above via Pixabay.

Here is a review meme all about Ryder!

Unsplash_XkFuXMtWUQg

 

To find out more about him check out this interview plus some more pics:

https://mjmallon.com/2017/07/02/mj-interviews-ryder-the-curse-of-time-bloodstone/

Genre: YA/Paranormal Fantasy
Pages: 240
ISBN: 9781999822439
Book Design: https://wendyannedarling.wordpress.com/
Book Cover Photography Credit: Dr John C Taylor, OBE: http://www.johnctaylor.com/
Illustration: Paperback includes additional material – two black and white illustrations by Artist – Carolina Russo: https://yesterdayafter.com/
Edited by Colleen Chesebro: https://colleenchesebro.com

Buy Book: myBook.to/TheCurseofTime

Unique Selling Point: Unique, Imaginative, ‘Charming, enchanting and richly layered this is purely delightful.’

“This delightful book will appeal to teens and young adults who love stories filled with magical crystals, dark family curses, and mysteries waiting to be solved around every corner. Each chapter leads you on a journey of discovery where Amelina earns the right to use three wizard stones to reset the balance of time and finally break the curse that holds her family hostage. A captivating tale!” – Colleen M. Chesebro (Editor)

bitmoji-20180711090345

85978B3EEB2A2F45468E6707CEAFE70D

March Speculative Fiction Prompt from Diana Peach – The Ride

 

 

For this I have imagined one of my characters, Ryder, from The Curse of Time Book 1 revealing a snippet of a story which I might use in future books. 

The Ride

It began with a rocking horse, a child’s toy.

Ryder discovered this antique treasure in a quirky street window, down ‘the lanes,’ in Brighton. He strolled along, with his rocking horse in hand and joined the queue for the busy student bus back to campus. A couple of ladies stared at his greediness, his decadence, taking up two empty seats on the bus. Undeterred he smirked, patting the rocking horse’s head. The ladies glared.

When he arrived back at his flat his flatmates exchanged knowing glances, cataloguing Ryder and his rocking horse in the oddity section. Only Olivia gave him the benefit of the doubt. He appreciated that and made a mental note to reward her later. A midnight kiss perhaps.

The perhaps became a definite. The midnight kiss became much more. When he left the  embrace of slumbering Olivia the moon lay heavy in the sky, its orb a perfect circle of complete mysteriousness. Ryder hung out his bedroom window staring, pleading with the moon to notice him. He dangled precariously, goading the moon to come closer. The pumpkin moon glowed blood red, a bleeding heart, surrounded by an uncaring sky. The rocking horse began to move slowly absorbing the moon’s vital energy. The moon continued to bleed until it could bleed no more. Instead it became darker and darker until Ryder could see nothing but darkness.

Beyond the darkness Ryder heard the sound of an ice cream van, its tune winding its way towards him. He hung further out of his window wondering about this strange phenomenon, an ice cream van in the middle of an eclipse of the moon.

He hesitated for a moment wondering whether to chance rushing outside into the darkness to catch the van before it disappeared. In the end he only wavered for a moment, his senses overflowing with midnight promises, a feast of darkness consumed by sugary ice-cream. But, no van appeared. Instead he waited, displeased.

Again he heard the jingle of the van teasing him, laughing at his foolish, childlike desires. The music grew louder and louder, a jarring cacophony. He covered his ears about to turn away, now desperate to escape. The van came to a screeching halt just as he took his first departing step. Ryder smiled. The hatch opened, and a man peered out. He had a round face, the roundest face that Ryder had ever seen, vanilla white, pock marked, hair as black as the midnight sky. There were no signs to indicate what kind of ice cream he sold. So Ryder waited for him to speak.

“Well, I haven’t got all night, what do you want?” asked the man scowling, as his creamy white face turned a surly red.

“I’m not sure,” replied Ryder. “What ice creams do you have?”

“Ice creams? What? No ice creams here young man.”

“But you’re riding in an ice cream van, playing an ice-cream jingle.”

“That’s true, but that’s not what I do.”

“What do you do?” asked Ryder, frowning.

“Hop aboard, ride the van and you might find out,” said the man, his face returning to its original brilliant white.

Ryder hesitated. This was strange, but Ryder thrived on strange, so he agreed.

The man opened the back of the van and Ryder climbed in. Inside the van Ryder could see only darkness. Blackness drifted towards him filling his senses with a bleak sense of loss. The man handed him a tiny torch that gave off a brilliant light.

“Come,” the man said.

The van was motionless, yet Ryder could swear that he felt movement. They walked and walked further into the darkness. Suddenly they stopped. A bright light shone from the torch on to a patch of turf. How curious. The van’s opened doors revealed a vast land which stretched its tendril-like fingers, shadows extending everywhere.

Ryder recognised the land. He sighed. “Home,” he said.

“Yes,” said the man. A note of melancholy filled the air.

“Why have you brought me here?”

“It’s nearly Halloween, lad. A time to visit the place of your birth.”

Ryder heard the sound of the fairground, the laughter, candy floss and excitement, but behind it all he knew there was the ride. There was no point in pleading with the man, asking him to take him back. He had to accept his fate, whatever that might be.

“Come,” said the man.

Ryder lifted his heavy feet, a ghostly chill settling in his bones.

 

To be continued…

 

This is in response to Diana’s Speculative Fiction prompt: https://mythsofthemirror.com/2019/03/01/march-speculative-fiction-prompt/

4d4a6c6a-69cd-46f9-8810-a3031a67f4e4

To find out more about the Curse of Time please visit:

myBook.to/TheCurseofTime

https://mjmallon.com/2018/02/13/media-kit/

Chiastolite – Writing Excerpt The Curse of Time Book 2 – Golden Healer #YA #Fantasy #Crystals #Magic

 

Today, I am thrilled to share with you details of a crystal that I have recently discovered.

Chiastolite

Chiastolite is such a fascinating crystal! I have chosen to feature it in the second book in the Curse of Time YA Fantasy series. This current work in progress stands in the region of 70,000 words. I am very excited about how it is progressing.

Chiastolite exhibits may be brown or green with a black cross pattern. The meaning of its name comes from the Greek word “chiastos” meaning cruciform or crosswise.

It has many wonderful properties: stone of balance, harmony, creativity. It is spiritually grounding, an excellent tool for meditation, psychic protection, problem solving, understanding aging, death, and is considered to be a stone of prosperity.

Let me share with you the unedited prologue/first chapter of The Curse of Time Book Two – Golden Healer. I hope you enjoy! Any feedback would be gratefully received.

Prologue

Eruterac wore a round knitted rasta cap embellished with bright sun-cured palm leaves. At the centre, he’d attached a shining Chiastolite – otherwise known as the death crystal.

The Chiastolite shared the brown colour of the earth he inhabited apart from a distinct black cross in the middle. Other than that and several cakes of mud he was naked, if you can call such a creature naked.

His filthy, matted dreadlocks tumbled forwards as he picked off a wriggling worm which dared to crawl across his bony frame. He held it inches from where his mouth used to be and dangled it in front of Leanne’s nose.

‘Dinner,’ he joked, as he bobbed his skeletal head.

‘No thanks, dearest creature,’ replied Leanne, as she tucked a strand of her silver pink hair behind her ear. ‘I prefer caviar. But I do like your new hat – that Chiastolite is very fetching!’

Leanne picked up her teapot and poured the liquid into a cup. It flowed slowly, twinkling with the brilliant colour of a thousand crystals. When it filled the cup, it turned the colour Leanne expected. She’d thought of green tea and magical green tea it was.

Eruterac reacted by choking and spluttering on clods of earth as he laughed. ‘That’s foul. Green tea, how can you drink such muck? Stinking Caviar. Sturgeon’s excrement.’

‘Huh, you can talk! You’re the one infested with worms.’

‘Worms… yes… I don’t blame you for hating worms. Worms are a wriggling nuisance but heavens to cemeteries they are nowhere near as bad as rats. Disrespectful Vermin!’

‘Poor you! Take heart, look, it must cheer you up to see such beauty every day,’ Leanne turned and pointed at the rose and myrtle garden and the cottage beyond with its walls of brilliant crystals.

‘My heart beats no more but I adore the tranquillity and beauty of this magical garden and cottage.’

A white dove landed on Leanne’s shoulder, she turned and smiled. But the dove thought better of it and alighted on the Creature’s hat. It pecked away at the worms making the creature smile.

‘Cheeky doves, always favouring you and your sunny hat when you’re around.’

‘They know who provides them with a constant dinner of worms. And who’s… boss.’

‘Huh! Yes to dinner, but a boss? You? That Chiastolite’s making you big-headed. Oh, my days. The mythological protectors and my dearest doves are all I – and my dear cottage need. And… to return to our earlier conversation, the mythological fly is up to his tricks.’

‘Where’s that stinking fly from hell been to this time?’ asked Eruterac, leaning forward, sending a bunch of worms tumbling towards Leanne’s teacup. Her eyes grew wide as she placed a protective hand over the top but a few swift worms landed in the saucer. She swiped them away.

‘Oh, anguish me. Worms in my saucer! How my flesh crawls. Ugh. I feel giddy,’ she placed a trembling hand on her forehead.

‘Leanne, forget the innocent worms. We were talking of the fly?’

‘Yes, we were. Now let me see. The fly has been to Amelina’s,’ she paused for a moment, her eyes wide. ‘He flew in the window but I am at a loss to figure out what happened next. My naughty crystal ball refuses to grant me a vision. I do know this – I placed my trust in Amelina – but I fear I was hasty.’

Leanne sighed.

‘Your heartfelt sigh makes me glad I’m dead. I no longer experience human stress and with time to waste, I’m a master at pontificating about nothing. But, I have a gurgling sensation in my once gut which tells me that the Grasshopper and the fly are in cahoots. Either way, I could suggest this or that, but it would all be for nought. Amelina is young, she will learn to master the magical crystal gifts you have entrusted to her. Time is on her side. I have every faith in her.’

He lifted his hat in a calculated salute to Leanne. A family of rats who had been resting on his dreadlocks ran free, knocking over Leanne’s cup.

‘Ugh. I wish you wouldn’t do that Eruterac,’ said Leanne. ‘You pretend to honour me but the last time you did that, you broke my precious teacup!’

‘Me! Mercy!’ replied Eruterac, laughing so hard that his eye sockets crunched together producing a horrendous grinding sound.

‘Stop that! You know you have no eyeballs – you devil! The rats devoured both your eyes long ago. Enough, our conversation is at an end,’ she paused for a moment before proclaiming, ‘The Bloodstone will find a way.’

‘Of Krystallos blood and Amelina I am certain,’ replied Eruterac, bowing.

© M J Mallon

I hope you enjoyed finding out more about Chiastolite and reading a WIP excerpt from The Curse of Time #2 Golden Healer.

What an extraordinary stone!

Do you own a Chiastolite? Let me know… Do pop over to the Sisters of The Fey blog tonight where I will be chatting some more about Chiastolite.

Bye for now!

http___signatures.mylivesignature.com_54494_373_07053E7D9657CC81851243011100E58F
Social Media Links

Buy Book: myBook.to/TheCurseofTime

Authors Website: https://mjmallon.com
Collaborative Blog: https://sistersofthefey.wordpress.com
Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and @curseof_time
#ABRSC: Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club on Facebook
Goodreads: https://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17064826.M_J_Mallon

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mjmallonauthor/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mjmallonauthor/

COLLEEN’S 2019 WEEKLY #TANKA TUESDAY #POETRY CHALLENGE NO. 119 “MYSTERY & ATTRACT,” #SYNONYMSONLY

Here’s a short, unedited passage from the second book in the series The Curse of Time – Golden Healer which I’m currently working on. It fits in well with Colleen’s two synonyms this week – mystery and attract.

For mystery I’m using enigma and for attract I’d decided upon beguiling. Enjoy!

 

Too Tasty To Ignore!

 

A pleasing parcel,

Wrapped in black jeans, tight tee-shirt,

Enigma to solve,

Beguiling but dangerous,

Was I a fool to trust him?

 

How could I explain this? Had Ryder fooled me? The strange, charismatic young man who appeared to come to my rescue on the river pathway when I’d first met him. Could he be responsible for the Bloodstone’s disappearance? I doubted that he would taint his hands with such an act. Instead, I wondered whether he might have used an accomplice. His recent behaviour painted a new picture of him — one that showed his true identity — a nasty, vindictive portrait.

Had I been foolish to trust him? What kind of person was he? And what secrets lay hidden in his heart?

I pondered how I would react if he came through the front door. For a moment, I imagined him entering. He’d be dressed in his signature black tee-shirt peeled tight across his ripped chest. His buttoned jeans would scream touch me. His black hair and eyebrows would be immaculately trimmed highlighting his eyes that would make you pause and gasp in surprise. Perhaps, I’d stare at his sensual blue eye while his black eye would blaze back at me like a dark alleyway full of dangerous excitement.

His expression would alter as soon as he approached. He’d raise an eyebrow as if he registered a sudden change in the environment.

He’d say something innocuous like. ‘Have your mum and dad been decorating? It’s very bright. The sad old place looks like it has had a new lease of life. Even the mirrors look different. Like they’re missing something.’

 

© M J Mallon

 

After all that you might need a piece of cake…  to wash down the sour taste of what Ryder may become… Ahh villains are so fun to write!

Here’s an extra bit of poetry just for fun. A lovely cake from Harriet’s tea rooms in Cambridge. It was almost too good to eat. It reminded me of  Ryder, he is so mesmerisingly handsome that he makes your mouth water. Enjoy!

img_20190112_144639_368

Shall I start eating?

This cheeky dessert mouthful,

Or just admire it?

Fork poised in the air trembling.

Such decisions, decisions!

 

Hope you enjoyed. I certainly did.

Do join in Colleen’s poetry challenge.

Here’s the link:

https://colleenchesebro.com/2019/01/15/colleens-2019-weekly-tanka-tuesday-poetry-challenge-no-119-mystery-attract-synonymsonly/

Bye for now,

bitmoji-20180711090345

 

85978b3eeb2a2f45468e6707ceafe70d

m j mallon _ ya author

Buy Book: myBook.to/TheCurseofTime

I’m a contributing author in the Plaisted Publishing House Ghostly Writes Anthology 2018 with my story Ghostly Goodbye.

Available on Amazon, Apple, Nook, Kobo, Scribd, 24S, Playster, Indigo, Angus & Robertson, Mondadori Store:

 Universal Buying Link

Social Media Links

Authors Websitehttps://mjmallon.com
Collaborative Bloghttps://sistersofthefey.wordpress.com
Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and @curseof_time
#ABRSC: Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club on Facebook
Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17064826.M_J_Mallon

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mjmallonauthor/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mjmallonauthor/

 

#Shortstory: The Old Man of Snow and The Snow Snake

 

IMAGE BY STEFAN KELLER

I’ve written a short story in response to Diana’s wonderful prompt on Myths of The Mirror.

Here is the link if you’d like to join in too:

https://mythsofthemirror.com/2019/01/01/new-feature-speculative-fiction-writing-prompt/

 

The Old Man of Snow and The Snow Snake

Today, the moon is full and high in the sky and a group of nineteen men travel with brave hearts to the mouth of the Snow Snake Cave.

The wind is biting cold. Each man carries a pack of provisions on his back and thoughts of his loved ones in his heart. They know that this journey might be one to their deaths and yet they trudge on.

At last after many exhausted steps they arrive at the forbidding entrance of the cave. It is no ordinary grotto. This cave is fashioned out of layer upon layer of snow. The mouth of which is an ice sculpture of a snake’s jaw gaping, its eyes furious and wide. The old man above is exquisite, his hair and snow beard fall in intricate icicles. He is leaning to one side, his hand of snow pushing down on the snake as if it coax it to move.

The Old Man of Snow startles the men, he stirs, his snow encrusted eyes open wide as he bellows,

‘Dare you approach us? I think not little men. I will crush you like ants and feed you to my friend the Snow Snake.’

The men stop so suddenly that they almost fall over with exhaustion. Several of them stagger backwards frightened by the sheer size and forbidding nature of the Old Man of Snow. But, one amongst them stays still, resolute and strong.

He squares his shoulders, takes a deep breath and replies. ’I have come to meet with the Old Man of Snow and the legendary Snow Snake. I wish to discuss what you’ve done with the countless others who have ventured here. That is all that I and this brave group of men want – my old friends back. We are not greedy men. We don’t desire wealth, or gold, we only want happiness.’

Happiness?’ the Old Man lifts his hand and pulls at his beard. The Snow Snake begins to wind his tail back and forth causing a volley of tiny snowballs to fall.

‘They are lying Old Man,’ said the Snow Snake, hissing. ‘They mean to trick us. Don’t allow them passage. If you do, I will swish my furious tail even more and they will be crushed under an avalanche of snow.’

‘Silence, Snow Snake! I am sick of your reptilian attitude. Let them speak. I have never heard a human ask for so little before and I am curious if indeed they speak the truth.’

The humble man bowed before the Old Man of Snow and then kneeled on the cold earth. ‘I swear by the almighty that I tell the truth. I, and my men are simple farmers, we tend the earth, eat our crops, and milk our herd. We don’t need riches and fame.’

‘You are a wise man. Unfortunately, your friends who came before you were foolish and greedy. They tried to steal from the Snow Snake and he and I were very angry.’

‘They were wrong to do so and I apologise on their behalf. Please forgive me for asking but what happened to their foolish souls?’

‘Within the cave there are a multitude of tiny snow snakes who wriggle free when they smell greed. These tiny snakes are lethal, one bite of their venom stilled these greedy mens’ hearts and froze them for all eternity.  Here, come. I grant you entry to see the power we possess so you will not dare to steal from us. The ice sculptures of your friends are very beautiful.’

The men muttered. Some made as if to turn back but the leader spoke again.

‘Men come with me, we must pay our respects to our old friends.’

One replied, ‘Are you mad? They may do the same to us. How can you trust the Old Man of Snow,  the Snow Snake and his allies the tiny venomous snakes?’

‘I only know what is right and good,’ replied the humble man.

‘So will it be,’ said several of his followers, but many turned away, retracing their steps back from where they had come.

The few that remained were granted a passage into the mouth of the Snow Snake’s cave. But the snake hissed and rattled his snow tail in a show of extreme displeasure.

The Old Man of snow stamped his snowy boots, and the snake stopped.

Once inside the cave, the humble man and his band of followers saw nothing but ice and snow. They heard no sign of life, no trickle of water, but still they walked on.

As they turned a corner, the cave widened, and they entered a room which was ablaze with a colourful array of magical stones. For a moment even the humble man was tempted to pop one of these magnificent stones in his pocket but then he remembered the Old Man’s warning.

The men began to question their desires. ‘Surely one small stone for each of us wouldn’t be a wicked thing to do?’ they clamoured.

The humble man turned to them in turn and spoke. ‘We are here to save our friends, not to steal. We must save them, or bid them farewell. Follow me.’

With much grumbling and moaning the men finally did as they were told and were rewarded with the sight of the ice sculptures.

How beautiful they were. Each of the trapped men had been saved for all eternity in a moment of rugged, albeit, frozen handsomeness. None of these men would ever age,  hunger, or cry, ever again.

The humble man touched each sculpture and openly wept, greeting each by name. His tears fell on the sculptures and caused them to melt, little by little. His followers did the same. Soon the tears flowed so freely that each and every sculpture broke apart to reveal their living friends within.

All were reunited in the most beautiful moment.  Hugs and words of regret were shared. They were no longer as rugged, or as handsome as they had been whilst enclosed in ice, but they wept true tears of joy that they lived. They could now go home to their beloved family and friends.

The Old Man bellowed so loudly that he could be heard. ‘Humble man, you are blessed by a natural inclination to fortune and good sense. Your heart is kind. Take one stone – a magical Sphene – back to your village. You are worthy. It will make your harvest plentiful forever more.’

The humble man wept, glad that he had not succumbed to greed’s desire but had been rewarded for his earnestness. He paused for a moment unsure how to proceed.  Which stone was a Sphene? His fingers trailed the masses of crystals and alighted on a single one. It was plain in comparison to the rest, a clump of layered plates and flattened wedge-shaped crystals. But when he placed it in his hands it glowed in a dazzling array of colours.

He cried, his friends cried too, and they hugged each other. They started to move back towards the mouth of the cave.

The snow snake hissed. ‘How dare you, Old Man? I thought you were joking! That Sphene is our treasure. My treasure! Stop this immediately, or I will kill them all.’

Inside the cave, there was a rustling noise as a billion tiny snow snakes appeared, hissing in fury they slithered menacingly towards the men. The men clutched their hearts in fear, their eyes wide with panic.

The Old Man didn’t reply. Not one word slipped from his lips. Instead, he blew from his mouth, and continued to blow. The tiny snakes were blown back, tumbling and rolling into snowballs whence they had come. The wind picked up as a flurry of snow began to trickle from the Snow Snake’s body. The men ran as the Snow Snake’s body started to break apart, as small pieces of the entrance of the cave were thrown to the wind.

‘Hurry!’ shouted the Old Man. ‘If you don’t run, you will be crushed under the Snow Snake’s broken cave body.’

The men ran as fast as they could. Just as they exited the mouth of the cave the roof of the snow snake cave began to crumble.

The Snow Snake’s mouth blew apart in a final raging hiss before it crushed back together, closing the entrance to the cave forever more.

The men collapsed to the ground, safe but breathing heavily.

Once the humble man had recovered his breath he spoke. ‘Why did you protect and save us, mere strangers to you, above your companion the snow snake?’

The Old Man of Snow lifted his hand and cupped the area around where his heart would have rested. ‘There is no room for a greedy heart. It is lonely to live alone but it better to live alone than to blight the gift of true magic with greed.’

©M J Mallon

 

Oh I really enjoyed writing that!

Hope you enjoyed.

Bye for now,

bitmoji968817799 (1)

 

85978b3eeb2a2f45468e6707ceafe70d

m j mallon _ ya author

 

Buy Book: myBook.to/TheCurseofTime

 

I’m a contributing author in the Plaisted Publishing House Ghostly Writes Anthology 2018 with my story Ghostly Goodbye.

Available on Amazon, Apple, Nook, Kobo, Scribd, 24S, Playster, Indigo, Angus & Robertson, Mondadori Store:

Universal Buying Link

 

Social Media Links

Authors Websitehttps://mjmallon.com
Collaborative Bloghttps://sistersofthefey.wordpress.com
Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and @curseof_time
#ABRSC: Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club on Facebook
Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17064826.M_J_Mallon

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mjmallonauthor/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mjmallonauthor/

 

 

Happy Christmas!!! Exciting News

 

A very happy Christmas and a joyful New Year to all my dear friends.  I will be busy over the next few days, eating,  drinking and spending time with family and I expect you will be too. Enjoy!

I’ll be back with some scheduled posts after Christmas on the Sisters of the Fey blog about:

  • The magic of trees – the dawn redwood.
  • Crystal Magic: I also plan to share my prologue – The Curse of Time Book Two – The Golden Healer with you and a very unusual crystal I have discovered called Chiastolite.
  • Harry Potter Sorting Houses – Which house am I?

On my author blog I will be continuing with book reviews and the like and hopefully some poetry, short stories/flash fiction – time permitting.

EXCITING NEWS!!! I am making progress –  The Curse of Time – Book two – Golden Healer –  my YA fantasy series,  is now standing at around 70,000 words.

 

In case you missed it I shared a fun, jokey Christmas cake recipe over on Solveig’s blog for her 4th Advent calendar.

Here is the link: https://solveigwerner.com/2018/12/22/magical-boozy-nutty-christmas-cake-by-marjorie-mallone-advent-2018-day-22/

Merry Christmas to you all. Keep smiling, writing, creating. Each day is a new, exciting adventure.

Much love,

bitmoji-20181202094548

85978B3EEB2A2F45468E6707CEAFE70D

 

My Christmas offer. The Curse of Time Book One – Bloodstone:

Buy Book: myBook.to/TheCurseofTime

Copy of Special offer .99pence

 

I’m a contributing author in the Plaisted Publishing House Ghostly Writes Anthology 2018 with my story Ghostly Goodbye.

Available on Amazon, Apple, Nook, Kobo, Scribd, 24S, Playster, Indigo, Angus & Robertson, Mondadori Store:

Universal Buying Link

 

Social Media Links

Authors Websitehttps://mjmallon.com
Collaborative Bloghttps://sistersofthefey.wordpress.com
Twitter: @Marjorie_Mallon and @curseof_time
#ABRSC: Authors Bloggers Rainbow Support Club on Facebook
Goodreadshttps://www.goodreads.com/author/show/17064826.M_J_Mallon

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/mjmallonauthor/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/mjmallonauthor/

Tumblr: http://mjmallonauthor.tumblr.com/