Dragon Stone; the Awakening


Wayland, having fallen from the path as a unseen force blinked his inamorata out of existence, wakes in a world where life is no longer quite the same.


For those new to the tale you might want to read the previous extract in order to become familiar with his plight. The link is below.

Dragon Stone

In part three, our intrepid blacksmith finds himself waking up after being cast aside and out of consciousness as something steals Tara from his grasp.

If you want to see more then please refer to the blurb at the end, and please feel free to share any of my posts. It will be hugely appreciated!



When Wayland awoke time had moved on. The sun was riding high. His mouth was like sandpaper, and dried blood caked the left side of his temple where the stump had claimed his conscious. Everything hurt, and fever rippled through his body; made worse by the blistering heat from above, which had already turned much of the skin on his arms and neck red. Blinking he tried to move, but weakness scourged his muscles forcing him to fall back.

Tara where are you?

The thought scythed through the mind fog, and clarity burst through. If he was here, then where was she? He recollected being thrown off the edge of the path, and hearing her scream but beyond that…nothing at all. Except,

I was in the dark, running from something and you were gone. Then I was imprisoned and they told me it was your fault. That you never loved me and I was being turned into a monster.

The dream.

Dear God she knew.

Confusion ran wild. Why did she agree to walk with him if she knew? Was she unsure? It was too much and tears of pain welled from his eyes and a cry filled the air before the darkness claimed him once more.

In the field two labourers stopped their toil and looked toward the woods.

“Did you hear that Bryn?”

“Aye, and it sounded like the devil got someone’s soul.”

Jon took a step forwards.

“It could be Wayland or Tara; neither came home last eve. They could be in trouble.”

“Ye may be right. Best we go to see.”

Both men set of at pace toward the base of the incline, at the edge of the flood field where the grass lay uncut and tall. It was here they came across Wayland.

“What in God’s name.” Bryn knelt beside the smith.

What he saw turned his stomach. Wayland was unconscious, that much was clear, as was the wound to the head caused during the fall. The rest looked like fire had flailed his skin leaving it blistered and peeling.

“Jon, fetch the cart.”

Wayland found conscious on the journey back as the cart rumbled over uneven ground, and wagon ruts baked under the sun. He was under damp sacking, which offered some relief from the heat above, but his body felt on fire. Strange deliriums walked across his mind. Dragons weaving and scorching the earth and strange creatures flying overhead; though he knew his eyes were not ready to open. He could hear hushed voices in the front of the palanquin. They sounded concerned, almost scared.

“Faster” said one, “I’m trying” replied the other.

Wayland recognised neither, lost as he was in hallucinations of the mind. The Black Dragon was absorbing. It swooped and sprayed flame, igniting fields and a hay-barn. A man also, who was drawing a longbow that never got to release it’s arrow before the charred remnants of the archer fell to the ground. These things were all new to the blacksmith. He found them fearful and prophetic; real and yet in a dream. The voices in the cart carried on as the darkness claimed him once more.

It was like that four times before he awoke, and silence befell his ears. The jostling had stopped suggesting the cart was stationary. The Black was perched on a ruinous building that might have been a chapel rather like the one he was going to wed someone in….his mind was not clear in that matter. He remembered going for a walk with a girl but the rest was fog. Thinking hurt, so he let it by; things were wrong, but right now he was in real trouble. This much he knew.

Next time his eyes flicked open it was dark and a ceiling looked down at him in the flickering glow of a candle. He felt cold, which was a change from burning. The Black had gone from his hallucinations, although he was uncertain if he was looking at reality.

His corroded memory was piecing things together, but kept locking onto a daisy withering in the dusk air. He tried to turn his head but nothing happened. Panic crawled in as, limb by limb, he found nothing moved and everything was slowing. He heard an owl, somewhere outside, and tried to call out. In his head it was clear “Please help me, is anyone here?” Nothing left his lips. Terror purged through his blood, but found no method of release save for the emptiness inside his mind.

The Black appeared; this time on the ground. It walked ever closer, standing taller than any building Wayland had witnessed. The creatures eyes were ice and all things putrified before it. He tried to shut it out, but his eyes no longer wanted to close. A taloned foot descended towards his head and he felt his bladder empty. Inside, he screamed as the foot came down and again his waking world fell into the abyss.

Voices woke him.

“He won’t last much longer.” A female voice; tantalisingly familiar but beyond his memory.

“Aye, the heart is slowing and nothing stirs him.” This one he knew as the village priest.

I’m awake screamed his mind. Desperately he tried to move…anything and everything. He felt strong as an ox, but nothing wanted to comply. The ceiling was his vista and his ears the link to his surroundings. Calming he listened.

Things were magnified beyond anything he could remember. Outside insects were clicking, caterpillars chewing leaves, wind rolling through grasses. Far in the distance the river washed over stones and collided with banks before eddying and swirling ever downstream until it met the mill, which creaked as the weight of flow turned the wheel. Each of these things he could hear intimately, and the sounds drew the pictures; a hawk flapping high up in the sky and the squeal of a field mouse as it descended like stone. The wind noise rushing audible as it fell.

Within the room the whispers briefly became shouts until his subconscious turned them down. Underneath all, he could hear the heartbeats of those standing looking over him. He could see the red corpuscles colliding in veins and arteries as they coursed through ever diminishing capillaries. The sound of air filling lungs; and the blood. The mind drew the blood forwards; drop by drop until it entered the great pump beating at the core.

With some effort Wayland forced himself to focus on the voices. One in particular; a man that stood near the woman. Strong he was. His blood surged, powered by a muscle that throbbed in Wayland’s mind.

“No sign of Miss Spinlow yet. Half the village has scoured the path top and bottom all the way to the folly and 100 feet into the wood. Not even the dogs can find a scent. It’s like she just disappeared.”

The woman was sobbing. Wayland could hear the tears dripping down her face. Spinlow…I know that name.

“But you can’t just disappear into thin air. That would need…”

She trailed off to be overtaken by the priest.

“Witchcraft or worse. Whatever hit the boy here sent him clean over the edge and down the drop.”

“Worse?” said the man with the loud heart, “what could be worse?”

“The dark hides many creatures; not all of them play by our rules Merek. We have our God to seek comfort with, and where there is God there are adversaries constantly battling.”

The heart has a name. Wayland played with this…Merek Blackwater of the mill. I know him. He heard the priest draw closer and begin to pray for him. Pain rippled through him in response. Bright lights and stars filled his mind until the Black ploughed through it all and cast him back into the pit.

On the next waking he sensed his grip on the past failing fast. All save one, that came to him in a dream deep inside the unconscious abyss. The girl he saw was bewitched and vacant. Her dress ripped down to the waist exposing skin and breast, red with blood that seeped from two wounds in her neck. Runes were etched on each wall and upon the floor was drawn a massive pentagram whose points were connected by a circle of white. The girl was chained to a stake in the centre and the room suffused in incense and smoke spewing from torches and candles. Dark hooded figures moved round the outside of the circle chanting in some language he knew not. The girls head raised upwards and he watched her mouth call out his name.

Wayland’s mind broke out and back into the broken confines of his dying body. Tara Spinlow. His mind screamed outwards in grief and remembrance. She had agreed to wedlock moments before he fell. But even in that she had seen the outcome in a dream the night before. Wayland made an oath:

If I survive this ordeal then I swear on my forefathers I will find you Tara, and take revenge on those that did this.

The Black clearly agreed and let him lose the world some more.

The darkness of subconscious cleared placing him in another dreamscape to walk with visions of other places. The dragon was there again, ever watchful and curled up with enormous horned tail wrapped up against it’s jet black body. It’s maw widened revealing long canine teeth near the front. Almost the length of Wayland’s arm, thickset at the base and rising to points that would rip armour to shreds. Four incisors, top and bottom, rested between ready to sever bone and flesh alike. Behind these, and pointing slightly backwards, were rows of pointed teeth. Amidst the jaws, snaked a forked tongue, byzantium in colour and continuously tasting the air for scents that might need scourging of life.

Vast eyes matching the tongue surveyed the ground below it’s perch. A half moon shaped plateau, outside a cavernous opening half way up a sheer cliff face, nestled on the edge of a mountain that rose into the clouds. Below rested the petrified burnt out skeletons of a village with caved in roofs and lifeless orchards. Fire had bathed this place, and sterilised it all the way to the baked mud at it’s roots. In the far horizon, he could see the edge of a long wall of trees over which the air shimmered in a haze of heat. Between that and the mountain the land was desolate and pitted. Relics of battle lay scattered as bones and fleshless bleached skeletons lay rising in anguish from the scarred mud.

Why am I here?

Wayland was confused. Here he felt alive and well; able to move and feel. But horror lived in every direction and above, from it’s lair, The Black watched on. It was not a place to linger.

Smith…I see you.

Wayland started. There was evil in his mind. Cold words creeping across his unconscious conscious and rich in melancholia. Glancing round he was drawn up to the plateau where The Black was reared up on hind quarters unfurling huge six ribbed wings ending in curled talons. Webs of weathered skin spread out over the, leaving the horned tips protruding at the rear. It’s neck stood proud and layered with scutes whose edges shimmered in a purple haze, where the sun reflected.

It was the eyes that captured Wayland; for these were settled right upon his.

You are a figment of my mind Dragon…begone.

Deep throated laughter rippled over his mind.

You think Smith?

The Black dropped off the plateau and the wings took air, lifting him upwards to circle high above the ant of a man down below.

Run Wayland.

This was a new voice, a girl. Not any girl though, Wayland knew this one; in this unconscious realm his memory functioned perfectly.


The Dragon’s spirals dwindled as he tipped his wings and began to descend.

Ignore her Boy.

“Where are you Tara?”

No time, get out before the beast consumes you.

Wayland was aware a dark shadow now fell over the ground following. The Black was closing.

“How? I have nowhere to run.”

He could feel panic stirring and his heart throbbing in his ears. Around him the world was a desert of ash. The forest was leagues away and the cliff housed the lair. But this is a dream.

Are you certain of that?

The dragon was taunting.

Just wake up Wayland.

Tara was screaming at him. In desperation he was backing away from the cliff; not that it would help, but standing still seemed nearly as pointless. The Black had him.

You are already dead in that world Boy.

Looking up he could see the beasts hind legs draw up and flex five byzantium talons on each foot, ready to crush him. Fear paralysed his ability to move; his eyes locked onto the size of the claws. Hope fled.

Wayland Ferrars wake up right now or you will never see me again.

Tara roused his subconscious mind. She was pleading now and courage coursed through his veins. The Black crushed down and this world fell into shadow.


About here I usually ramble. Scene three of this chapter. I enjoyed writing about Wayland. His path reaches a form of conclusion by the end. Beyond that the creature existing in a dark world must decide. I hope you found this scene as entertaining as it was to construct.

I think it a shame that you can’t read the entire chapter in one sitting. I feel it strength lies in the fullness of text.

Nevertheless I thank you for making it this far. Please feel free to like, comment, share or just turn back to find a more worthy trail.



© G Jefferies and Fictionisfood, 2016. All rights reserved.


145 thoughts on “Dragon Stone; the Awakening

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  1. Yet again, you leave me on the edge of my seat. This just made me realize the different genres you write. This seems more gothic, the God Strain more modern horror and the brothers are more paranormal. Do you ever think about the genre that you are writing for as you’re starting?

    1. You are two parts short now of where this one ends as a chapter. Not quite sure how you’ll find the last one as it’s exploring my worst nightmare lol.

      Writing…that’s a hard one. I have two more books awaiting an edit. Both entirely different to any you mentioned, although they do have elements of supernatural embedded in them. One thing that might show up for anyone reading them all are crosslinks. I’m confident that’s not obvious on the blog. However in the books they are there if a reader is looking. To answer your question though, no. I never start with a genre. I have an idea or prompt in mind and it quickly distils into a direction. For example here, I didn’t start knowing anything about The Black, no idea it would even appear. It was Tara, Wayland and an event that would tragically separate them. I have other snippets of different parts of the same story in different places that all closed in on a land where dragons had been slaughtered. I have a wizard somewhere on here with another dragon stone heading for the same landscape as Wayland, but in a different time frame. I have a girl lost in a coma in another book with another stone in another parallel world where the dragons weren’t eradicated and a Lich Queen in yet another with another stone. Those ideas grew from just starting writing.

      The God Strain was more cause and effect. I’d written Wayland who was a blacksmith and arrived with Smithy. I disappeared inside my head for an hour and came back with voices that took him over. That led me to possession and I came up with God Flu as a sentient virus appearing in a biotech lab. Why it flew into that genre I have no real control of.

      Rose (finished book and nearest to publication) is a different beast altogether. It follows depression and a split mind that must break before it can heal. This manifests as a mental breakdown and self induced coma where her minds try to decide what reality is. I think that’s more psychological thriller.

      I suspect how I go about it has some ritualistic formula rather than a favourite pencil lol ?Oh, weren’t you looking for that sort of thing in Wednesday Work?

      Thank you for such a kind comment too. Always appreciate your input?

      1. Yes, Gary. I’m waiting for your writing rituals and habits. This is a fascinating look at where you start with your writing, though. Sounds like you get a little possessed with a different kind of God Flu.

        1. I ought to summarise that in a post..or hold it back in case of interviews #tumbleweed lol.

          I’ll try and get that to you early next week. How much are you looking for?

          Oh, and BYUB. I’ve stuck up a memoir for you to genre check lol

    1. Thank you! It’s actually part two of four that form a whole chapter that I put up here to test an idea. I’m aiming to pick this back up this year and take it to completion.

      But an evil dragon…never actually considered The Black as that! The evil side was what spilled Wayland from the path and took Tara. Should be fun seeing exactly what The Black is after now you’ve said that!

    1. Thank you Lisa. I am gearing up to take this on again this year. One chapter is on here now, which was to “test” its appeal to readers. Initially I was just exploring an idea. Now its starting to speak to me again 🙂

  2. Loved the use of words Gary;

    ‘Everything hurt, and fever rippled through his body’ – fabulous!

    ‘snaked a forked tongue, byzantium in colour and continuously tasting the air for scents that might need scourging of life.’ – left me gasping!

    1. Thank you Lucy. If I am honest this one is something I felt really at home doing. Its a real linking book that follows one that’s never had any airing on here and is waiting to be edited. The Black is, however, mentioned in Black Marsh too. Not as a key reveal, but as something that might break into our world as it guards the….what am I doing? spoilers… my bad!!!!

      Thank you so much! I have two more parts of this to put up again too.

  3. Wow! I’ve really been enjoying this story. And, I am obsessed with this sentence: “He could see the red corpuscles colliding in veins and arteries as they coursed through ever diminishing capillaries.” The sparse alliteration makes it so poetic.

    1. Thank you so much Kelsey. Would you believe I never even saw that alliterative part before? When I am in the right “zone” writing it just flows out without me paying a great deal of attention to the actual words used. When someone points thing like this out I have to stand back and say “Seriously, did I actually write that!” 🙂

    1. Thanks Carol. Sometimes its hard for me to see that and words here do a great deal to keep the momentum going 🙂

    1. Thanks Judy, it’s one I did a while back as a test chapter (with the other three parts forming that) to see if the story had bones to work with as the sequel to another book. I’m now reasonably confidant it has and I’m becoming rather keen to pursue it now. In truth I’m a bit overwhelmed by the positive comments. It really helps the mojo 😊

  4. Right Gary, as I haven’t read any of this yet I will have to go and get the dinner ready, make sure I won’t be interrupted and then spend my evening reading….what I have seen so far I LOVE!! I will pin and share later in some sort of order!! C x

    1. Thank you Claire; This is actually the second part; the first is actually just called Dragon Stone; There are four parts in total that together form a Chapter of something I am still yet to write. Although I have done the first book of the series….it rests quietly at present in my slush pile.

      I hope the rest lives up to expectation…I suddenly feel under pressure!!!!

      Thank you so much for the wonderful comment too x

  5. I am in awe of your fiction writing ability, Gary. What an imagination you have! I would like to try doing a longer fiction at some point. Timing hasn’t been right, but you are a great inspiration for me.

    1. Thank you so much; although some might argue my imagination is a shade disturbed; at least I do when it gets going!! That or I am escaping the real world in favour of some alternate reality!

      These pieces are often my starting threads. I put them up to gauge a reaction even if I already know the story will grow. However, my method involve starting with a prompt idea or concept. I then write between 3000 and 5000 words (taking average chapter length to be around 5000). If while I am doing that I see where it can evolve, the pace works, or the character feels right and the end of the short session leaves a hook that just needs to carry on then I know I have the potential for a novella at least and a full novel at best. By the end of either of those I know whether its going to advance into more books or stop at one.
      If time is against you and you’d like to think about longer fiction then try doing the short version above first and see if it feels like it can grow.
      This method is best used to avoid getting to, say 30,000 words and then thinking its lost it’s way too.
      So with that in mind, don’t feel bound to start at the beginning if you do it this way; start wherever you want and write a scene. you can always file it for when time lets you do more 🙂

    1. This one ends with “Schism” if memory serves. This was a test chapter for a new book. Possibly part two of a series, not decided that yet. How does it end? Err, spoilers 😉

      Thank you for taking time to read it by the way 💐

        1. Thank you for taking the time. More so if you enjoyed it as that is what writing is all about at the end of the day 🙂

            1. Ha-Ha are you certain that was not a case of I must sleep as child will be awake soon? The one where that thought settles and you spend every moment thereafter listening for them instead of dropping of yourself 😉

                1. I find that older houses do that more; they have bones and memories absorbed in time. Not all of them pleasant and occasionally they like to let new occupants know 😉

                  1. Mine is a very nice blank place actually. It housed visiting doctors that would stay for a couple of days, do the surgery and move on. Ours was the female residence (it’s a townhouse). Like I said, it was after we received things from a friend that things began to bump… as it were.

                    1. Oooh, story there! Not the house but the object. The only way to dispel the hauntings is to pass it on. If it lets you, or needs something paid before hand. Still, better than a video to watch that activates an end of days clause….

                    2. I have a weird imagination on… oh yes, my writing genre lol. Thing is you can open cans of worms here. Do you control the object or does it control you? Does it impart such terror that you will do absolutely anything to pass it on? What do you do if the person you give it to refuses to accept it? So much to play with 🙂

                    3. Very much so! Although might be not all relics are demon hinged. And forget not, that from the demons perspectve, they are the good guys and we are not lol

                    4. Of course, to a demon, we might be seen as “demons” and they may well consider themselves not to be! Although to convolute it further, applying human terms of reference to something that’s not human might be the wrong way to look at it 🙂

                    5. I read something by King (I think it was him) once that said if you don’t understand why the antagonist is, or thinks they are, the protagonist in his/her world then you won’t be able to write a believable antagonist. I think it is easier to equate by saying can you write a believable story from a depressed persons point of view if you know nothing about how depression affects the mind and thinking? Harder than it sounds from just saying “I write” isn’t it lol

                    6. Method writing with a slant. Ever tried writing a short story totally from the antagonists POV? It’s quite challenging as its counter intuitive and you are forced to justify what they are doing because in their world it’s not wrong. Makes writers sound like nut jobs lol

                    7. It’s something I have to do when writing my genre and it is challenging. Most of it is in character profiling; motivations, ambitions, why they believe in what they are doing as right. In my humble opinion (again lol) it strengthens the work. We all know how to do the human thing wrt right and wrong; but do most people really get inside the psychology of the opposite as opposed to judging it? A few people have actually asked me to write a post on how I go about writing. This aspect would certainly get expanded!! 🙂

                    8. That sounds like a good idea, the post explaining your methods. I’m not sure how I’d go about it myself! That’s why your characters are so strong and realistic though, they have full personalities and motivations and goals (and dare I say hopes and dreams?).

                    9. I will definitely give it some thought now. So many have asked and it might help me too. Going back through my approach might be unconventional, but there are likely to be a lot of writers that struggle with that too. Might help my readers see a bit more of how I come up with things too.

                      Thank you re my characters too. I struggle with self appraisal and leave it to readers to decide. And yes, you can dare to say that because it’s part of that profiling 😊

  6. You could lift a few filter words and make it sharper more intense a final edit pass would do it, but you have a good way, one that held me. Though I am realling with earache and a pounding head, I couldn’t leave it. Go find Dylan Hearn if you don’t know him already, the Suffolk Scribbler, he writes Dystopian where you are more fantasy but You two should connect.just a thought. In case you didn’t interprete my ramblings ‘The man did good’ Time to pull together a book.

    1. How to put this in a way that sounds that I know what I’m doing. Just about everything I put up here is done to test ideas and story runs. Everything you see is FIRST draft. Granted when posting I do try and knock out obvious typos and insert the odd bit of grammar, but the purpose was to see if the read is worth pursuing as a novel. I know I can write reasonably well in first draft mode and more than a few have been envious of that (in a polite banter way).

      My route outside here is two editing rounds generally beyond the first draft and if I feel I’m being ineffective pro editor and then pro proofer. Ergo, I am agreeing with your observation while explaining what I put up. My writing esteem is asking if there is metal in the stories.

      I will certainly look for Dylan; is Suffolk Scribbler his blog name?

        1. I have trouble believing in myself, which I think is why I put them up this way! However, I have submitted a completed novel to a publisher and am waiting to hear back! #anxietybomb !!

            1. Its a small independent publisher called Valley Press. They recently joined up with and Edinburgh one with similar working ethos called Emma Press. It was a 90 day turn round and I submitted at the start of June. My fall back is self publishing, probably IngramSpark. I hate not knowing although I do know they only accept 1 in 100 submissions so odds are not with me lol

              1. You seriously need to get yourself positive, buy the book The Secret by Rhonna Byrnne. I don’t do eeby jeeby crap and not… i am afraid to say a lover of any religion but the book changed the way I think act and believe. And you can delete this once you have read it I don’t ever do this sort of thing and I only believe it because I live it and have seen it work for me numerous times.

                1. I’ll keep it otherwise I’ll forget what the book is by morning! I’m actually cautious of being too positive. It’s helps reduce anxiety when things are not in my control. And boom submissions are right up there in that one!!

    1. Thank you Lucy, I’m a fan of the little things. Each moment such as the ones Wayland walks, have opportunities to tap into those. Where did you catch this post from? I think it’s buried in my blog roll now!

        1. That’s the pinned Tweet I think. It’s actually part 2 of Waylands journey. Thanks for letting me know Twitter actually works lol.

  7. Poor Wayland! I hope he can find his way back to Tara (and not just her ghostly voice) and avoid the dragon! Another great installment, Gary!

    1. It’s a bit like those old TV end of episode leader…next time on Sunday Blog Share Wayland will be…hmm spoilers, no spoilers… Thank you Traci. This is part of my trialing of a lead into a second book of a series that’s sitting in my slush pile waiting for an edit 😱

    1. Too kind my friend…I will throw the remaining bits into the group to take things to chapters conclusion. Thank you so much

    1. Good grief that was quick!! I’m wondering how the blog share folk will find the journey of my blacksmith ending up later…thank you Ritu #Gatu

      1. Gary I’m sat here in the relative peace of my house… kids stayed at their grandparents last night… hubby still snoozing… so I have lots of time to read!!!! And share! #GaTu

        1. A true lazy Sunday experience 😊 Mind you after last week you need some R&R. Perfect for the blog share though, although I’m going to have to start putting time restriction on mine soon. The group is growing and I ought to be doing other stuff….maybe a few more shares first lol

                1. Both?? On a phone…my IPad is refusing to load the post now…I suspect it’s too many comments. Time to recall a laptop in next week methinks 😱

                    1. Mind probably would be too, but I’m not using apps so it’s probably too much data between three open social media sites that’s doing it in 🤔

    1. Very kind of you to pop over and take the time to comment. Really appreciate that, and if you enjoyed the read then even better 😊

    1. Shhhh, spoilers….it might turn out alright this time….or, nah… I quite like where it flowed especially with the wizard in the other bit tying the landscape together in different times.
      Thank you so much for such a generous comment indeed. 😊

    1. Crumbs, you might not like where this is heading then…it gives me the goosebumps writing it. Thank you again. Next part is either today or tomorrow 🙃

  8. Oh, wow! You have a way with words. I’m very short on time and concentration right now so I’ll start from the beginning when I have more of both otherwise it would be a waste.

    1. That is most kind of you to pop over so swiftly after my unannounced appearance on your excellent blog. Obviously, if I’d read this before replying to your reply to my comment I’d not have needed to mention there be dragons here…well dragon…in this world…or rather subworld. My fictional multiverse has a few with them in and this one where they’ve been all but exterminated in another part of the tale. Please do venture to the first part, it’s in sequence from a chapter I’m putting up. Next one is either tomorrow or Saturday. Your feedback would be invaluable…given the eerie side that drew me from Twitter to you….retweeted that too, just for good measure 🙃

  9. Boy can you write! Just sorry I haven’t more time to read all your wonderful work Gary – snowed under with new job and getting my manuscript ready for publishing. Well done, keep it up. 🙂

    1. I think it was you that mentioned check the spam folder and I just did. Guess what? This was in it! So sorry I didn’t check before, it never occurred to me things would jump into it from friends!

      Thank you so much Marje. I’ve been following your posts about your manuscript and writing on Facebook. No need to apologise either. Time is everyone’s enemy. Just drop in whenever you can. Really appreciate your thoughts 😊

        1. Thank you Marje! This concept is a chapter thrown on here to see how people react. To progress it or not kind of thing. Last part should be up next weekend!

  10. Flipping heck Gary! I whizzed through this, devouring each deep descriptive word. From the first time you let me read this to this time – It’s still amazing, haunting, chilling. The Black is a force to be reckoned with and I’m sure you’re followers are chomping at the bit for the next installment! 🙂 YOU ARE AN AMAZING WRITER my friend 🙂

    1. I don’t know about chomping at the bit lol. Although, I wonder how they would feel about Rose. Very different to these.
      Have to say, I have some synergy with The Black. He watched his species annihilated…oops spoilers….. Thank you so much Helen 😊

  11. How many ways can I say you have an undeniable gift, my friend…this was blood-curdling in the best way…atmospheric, evocative, deliciously eerie, foreboding, creepy, deep and dark…your writing skills are, truly, awesome….and, that dragon…the stuff of nightmares. You are a master of finely-tuned suspense! Thanks for sharing 🙂

    1. You are so generous Truly. If you like it so far then I rather think you may enjoy, if that is the right phrase, how it pans out. His troubles have only just begun! Thank you so much 😊

      1. Oh, Lord! The poor guy…but, I won’t be able to look away…like a train wreck you can’t help but be drawn to (that is a testament to the power of your writing 🙂 ). I’m hooked! 🙂

        1. I think one might say, from a writing perspective, he encounters his ‘conflict’ pretty early on! Might be tricky to dig him out of it by then end….that’s a bit of a plot pun btw. You may reflect on that later 👻

          1. Oh-oh…that pun does not bode well for him! Your imagination is brilliant and I can’t begin to think about where you will take this…and, I am really eager to find out…. 🙂

            1. I could not possibly say…well, not at this stage…something unexpected might occur. It’s still early days and but chapter one 😁

          2. No pressure, but I’ve nominated for the 3 Quotes in 3 Days challenge….
            If you are up for it, post 3 quotes, 3 days in a row (doesn’t have to start today) and, on each of the days, nominate 3 people to do the same 🙂

            1. Crumbs, you just reminded me I forgot about a quote challenge and two Liebster ones from months ago 😱 Mind you I did do a quote challenge prior to those. In fact…did I not nominate you then ?? I will think on it and maybe divert it toward mindfulness !

    1. I vary the time of posting and you’re still first !! I think I mentioned that another chap wanders the battlefield too in another time. I take it you liked that and ‘good grief’ was not sarcastic eye rolling 😁

        1. I was tesasing 😇
          And thank you for the lovely comment. I do have a question though. I mentioned varying posting times yet you still found it really quickly. Do you ever sleep? Lol

            1. Good grief, no wonder you are so quick to drop in!! Can you not get some sort of crystals to help with that? Good idea wrt writing though. At that time in the morning the world is much quieter. I must keep that in mind when the nocturn awakes early here 🤔

              1. It’s a good time as there are no outside distractions and you can really get in touch with the worlds you are creating…howlite and selenite can help, but I think my bad sleeping habits are just too deeply ingrained..I have given up smoking though! 🙂

                1. Good show on the smoking!! Mind you it’s a flipping money drain I hear now. Outside distractions I so get… I have to rekindle my writing slot. It seems projects need to get going again 😁

                  1. £3.85 for a pack of ten!! Disgusting…rationalising it, I can buy a box of catfood that lasts my four three days..
                    You have some brilliant characters on the go (ahem-brothers!) whose stories are just waiting to unfold and for you to give them a voice :)They’ll wait..

                    1. How much? 😱 Very well thought out too. When you count up how many packs of ten over a year I bet it gets rather shocking!!
                      Ah yes, the brothers…I’ve actually signed up with NaNoMoWri for novel November. 50,000 words in one month. Not sure that was wise, but the project I want to run through there involves the third brother….his fate will influence the other two when I progress that….scary though…a book in a month….has epic fail written all over it…

                    2. You will be fine 🙂 You have good, strong characters, even Elisabeth as the walker between worlds…it’s such an exciting opportunity, I am sure you will do well. Clear Quartz for clarity of thought and planning…:)

                    3. Is it me or do you really like Elisabeth? 🤔 I have some notes to review this week and then shape up things to see if there is a 50,000 word plot. Clear Quartz it is too 😱

                    4. Lol! That noticeable…she’s a pretty cool character and a good contrast to the brothers 🙂 I always have trouble with dialogue…my characters all sound like me! Good luck ! :)x

                    5. Crumbs, dialogue I’m always asking if mine is stuffy, do they all sound the same, is it contributing to story or just mindless babble? Thank you 😊

                    6. Thank you! Your last comment on the subject had me on a scare moment. It’s one question I never ask…and yet dialogue is one of the most important elements!!!

                    7. Lol! Stop worrying! You have never had any negative remarks on the quality of your dialogue, have you? Your characters all have individual voices with their own traits, trust me, your dialogue comes across as authentic and readable!! 🙂

                    8. Not yet, but I’m not the best advocate to decide if what I write is good or not. Author mind in action lol. But thank you, if the characters come across as individuals then…oh hang about that validates my mental schizophrenia theory when in character 🤔

                    9. Well I did write The God Strain!! Never plan no. I start with an idea and thus far characters step forwards in my mind claiming their part in the story. I often troll for names but wait for one to say that’s me! Once I start I have very little control on where things go. With Wayland it started with him and Tara getting engaged. The foresight bit unravelled after I placed them near the folly, what flows after is entirely raw. The antagonist arrived after Waylands chapter ended. For reasons you will find out the creature watched subconsciously and then came forward afterwards.

                    10. The God Strain? Why is that familiar…the next bit sounds exciting!! I sometimes have an image, or a sentence…that just dances around the edges of my consciousness, waiting for me to capture it! 🙂

                    11. Right, thank you. I do tend to scribble a lot on scratty little pieces of paper..I will consolidate them into a proper journal …bet you can’t guess where I’m going now…!

                    12. I used to do that, but over time it got totally silly. I could never remember where I’d put things!! I do it in a file on my PC and save it to everywhere! Umm, apparently my emails say you’ve found some dystopian essay to read 😊

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