Crossing the Date Line

*Coming out of what, Clicky? …/lights up rollie and drags…*

UAV front and back cover

*/puffs contentedly…*

At last, Dear Reader, the Underdog Anthology V is published

*Knot a graphic novel, Clicky… /streams smoke… Short stories, many authors…*

… I’d been speculating with Leggy late on Friday as to the date it might appear…

Legy and Roob talk UAV and dates 1

… The first ‘event’ listed in the Wiki link – ‘The Year of SIX Emperors’…

LONE-STAR-1

*Five pointed star! I was thinking of The Okie Devil of Textus… /flicks ash… Cade’s got stories in the book. I didn’t even think of that, Clicky… /pats snout… What did I list next?*

Legy and Roob talk UAV and dates 2

*/drags… 19 Four-Tees… /blows smoke ring… Nineteen stories…*

*Three? …/squints… Sew, inadvertently, Leggy and I counted down six, five, four three… /final drag…*

Legy and Roob talk UAV and dates 3

*2, 1… /stubs butt… Hey, how about that ‘wolf trap‘, Clicky?*

Legy and Roob talk UAV and dates 4

 

Strangely enough, Dear Reader, if you go check out UAV’s listing on Amazon – and I suggest you doo 😉 – it’s published date is 20th April

facepalm

*Oh I dunno, Clicky… /lights up… 6, 5, 4, 3, 2, 1, 0… /grins…*

Have a Song 😉

Who Noob Tales: Nine Lives… No, Really

I am having a long weekend, Dear Reader. I spent yesterday daytime making final edits to stories in the soon-to-be-published ‘Underdog Anthology V: Six in Five in Four’. Leggy has a preview, in which he includes one of his stories from the book…

Old Peculier on the neighbours cat

*/grins… How peculiar, Clicky… /lights up…*

peculiar (adj.)

mid-15c., “belonging exclusively to one person,” from Latin peculiaris “of one’s own (property),” from peculium “private property,” literally “property in cattle” (in ancient times the most important form of property), from pecu “cattle, flock,” related to pecus “cattle” (see pecuniary). Meaning “unusual” is first attested c. 1600 (earlier “distinguished, special,” 1580s; for sense development, compare idiom). Related: Peculiarly.

wiki peculier

*’Also KT and KH’…/drags… No shit! …/streams smoke… *

Then last night Cade and I resumed his introduction to Doctor Who, and also caught up with Leggy and Poppy… Les amis…

Poppy and Roob discuss Cades Who Introductory Course 1

Poppy and Roob discuss Cades Who Introductory Course 2Poppy and Roob discuss Cades Who Introductory Course 3Poppy and Roob discuss Cades Who Introductory Course 4

rare doctor who hand flap

*/flicks ash… Knot a favourite episode, Clicky… /drags… although, excellent use of a jammie dodger… /blows smoke rings… I’d forgotten about that…*

Poppy and Roob discuss Cades Who Introductory Course 5

Poppy and Roob discuss Cades Who Introductory Course 6Poppy and Roob discuss Cades Who Introductory Course 7

*Like the villain, House, in The Doctor’s Wife, Clicky, Daleks are a bit like a sea anemone… /puffs… “hard on the outside, squishy on the inside”… I hadn’t made that connection before… /taps teeth…*

Anyhoo, in honour of Old Peculier’s neighbour’s cat, Dear Reader, and seeing as a ‘cat‘ won today’s Grand National, I thought I’d take a leaf out of Leggy’s book – pun intended – and post one of my stories from UAV. It’s short and called ‘Nine Lives’. The Knot-Sew confidential making of it can be found here. Enjoy!

*******

NINE LIVES

Karl sat at his kitchen table, smoking and observing the tendrils of early morning mist gently tickle the tops of the garden hedge, before continuing their soft creep to the ground. It was dark outside but the lawn glittered with stars; pregnant dew drops nestling in the grass caught the thin, amber light that spilled from the kitchen window. He stubbed out his cigarette and gulped back the last dregs of cold tea from his mug with a grimace. Not long now, Karl thought, she’ll be home soon. Outside the mist started to swirl and pool.

He stood up and stretched, bones creaking and knees popping as if to salute the end of his vigil. He fleetingly considered that he was getting too old for this malarkey, but she needed a watcher – someone to light the way back. He could bear the discomfort; it was only for the night. Karl rubbed his eyes under his glasses, and dragged his hands down over bristled cheeks to wipe any tiredness away. He contemplated putting the kettle on when he heard the first high pitched bark puncturing the dark. The second got him moving. “Not the foxes again!”

As he opened the back door, the wet slap of morning air to hit Karl’s face was accompanied by a rude crash and skitter of a dustbin lid falling, somewhere in the mist. She’s coming from the right, he thought, opening the door wider to peer out into the murk. More barks, louder this time, and a fiery hiss, were followed by the sound of clambered wood, as the garden fence shook violently. Karl held the door further ajar, and a white streak shot out of the mist and between his legs, into the kitchen.

Karl closed the door on the mist and the foxes who, by the sound of it, were now rummaging through next door’s bin for tasty scraps. He turned to the slight figure, lying on the kitchen floor. “For goodness sake, Lara, do you have to tease the foxes? It upsets the neighbours.”

“It upsets the bins,” Lara replied, lightly panting as she rolled over and attempted to sit up. “No, they were waiting for me. Foxes are not called cunning for nothing, Karl.”

“Yes, but they usually leave you alone when you’re hedge riding.”

Lara sighed. “It would seem witches aren’t held in much esteem these days. Not by people or wildlife.”

Karl surveyed the flush in his wife’s cheeks and her glittering eyes, and thought she still looked pretty formidable considering her advanced years. He also noticed the shudder in her arm propping her up. “You should get off the floor. What would you like, sofa or chair?” he asked, scooping her up, with barely a tremble from his own geriatric limbs.

“Sofa,” Lara replied with a wan smile. “Thank you, dear. And a cuppa and a ciggie wouldn’t go amiss either.”

“Funnily enough, I was just about to put the kettle on,” Karl replied, before lowering his wife, so she could reach out and pluck the cigarette packet and lighter from the kitchen table. A fat bead of blood splashed onto the surface below, quickly followed by another. “You’re injured?”

“Damn foxes.” Lara winced and drew her arm back toward her chest. “One of them managed to get a mouthful of armpit. I don’t think it’s too deep. Just stings a bit.”

“But you’re bleeding,” Karl said gruffly. Too gruffly, he feared, from the look his wife shot him. “Okay, let’s get you comfortable and then I can clean that up,” he continued in a more conciliatory tone, before carrying her through to the front room.

Karl noticed that Lara was already on her second cigarette when he returned five minutes later, to set out a bowl of hot water, soap, flannel and towel on the carpet before her. “Kettle’s on for tea,” he said kneeling down. He adjusted his glasses and gingerly started to lift Lara’s elbow. “Can’t let it get infected, how would we explain that to Dr Patel?”

“I can always change back so you can take me to a vet,” Lara replied sharply, pulling away from his grasp.

She must be in great pain, Karl thought. “Come now, dear, we don’t have pet insurance. We don’t own a pet.” Lara’s eyes briefly flashed at his riposte, but her body relaxed and she allowed him to lift her arm. “So apart from getting into a fight with some foxes…”

“Ambushed by some foxes,” Lara quickly corrected him.

“Sorry, ambushed by some foxes on the way home, how was the rest of your night?”

Lara took a deep drag from her cigarette. “Well it started off okay,” she said, billowing a great cloud of smoke. “I went to see Annie and girls down at Saint Michael’s.”

“And how are Annie and the girls?” Karl asked as he cleaned her wound of blood.

“Dead.”

“Naturally.” Any bleeding seemed to have stopped, but the swelling around the punctures had already started to bruise, turning an angry black mauve that only truly flourished on elderly skin. Karl stopped himself flinching at the sight. “You’d think they’d get themselves a spirit cat.”

“They’ve got a spirit cat,” Lara gently rebuked him with a chuckle.

“A ghost cat, then.” Karl smiled at her mirth. “You know what I mean.”

“Oh a ghost cat would be just as stuck as they are. Graveyards are lonely places, Karl. The residents like the company and the gossip. Especially the newly interred. Once the funeral is over, they rarely get more than a yearly visit from any family. If that.” Lara finished her cigarette and stubbed it out in the ashtray perched on the arm of the sofa. “How’s it looking?”

“Ugly but clean. It’ll need some arnica,” Karl replied, rising carefully to his feet. “That’s in the kitchen. Besides, the kettle must have boiled by now. No, no. You stay there. I’ll go.”

Lara laughed and shooed him away with her good arm before reaching for the cigarettes and lighter.

Karl could hear swearing from outside the back door; Jim must be up and found the aftermath of the fox fracas. Karl popped the kettle on and grabbed the arnica and some aspirin from the medicine cupboard, chuckling at the string of expletives emanating from over the garden fence. He glanced out the window to see that sunrise was already burning off the mist that had been so thick an hour or so ago. It looked like it could be a lovely day.

The sound of the front doorbell caught him off guard. Who would be calling at this hour? Karl wondered and went to open the front door. Through the frosted glass he could make out the shape of a woman in a bright pink dressing gown. What could she want? Karl thought as he unlocked and opened the door. “Morning Celia. Is everything alright?”

“Oh Karl,” his next door neighbour cried, her face puffy and contorted with distress. “Karl, I’m so sorry if I’ve woke you,” Celia started to apologise. “There was some trouble with foxes in our garden last night. I don’t know if you heard any of it.”

“No,” Karl lied. “But I heard Jim swearing earlier. Did they make much of a mess?”

Celia looked distraught at the suggestion. “Well yes, but…” she trailed off with a sob. “Karl, it’s Lara. I’m so sorry. They killed your cat.” Celia had not come empty handed; she held out a bundle, wrapped neatly in a towel, out in front of her.

Karl felt an icy chill bloom from the crown of his head and cascade down his body. “Thank you,” he said numbly, taking the bundle from Celia’s shaking hands.

“I’m so, so sorry,” Celia continued but Karl had already shut the front door. He felt the lightness of the bundle in his arms. It felt so slight.

“Lara?” Karl called as he carried it through to his wife, but the front room was empty. He laid the bundle on the sofa and sat down next to it. A spiral of smoke floated up from the ashtray perched on the arm. Karl turned and picked up the last of the burning cigarette and with trembling fingers, finished his smoke.

*******

I’m off now to introduce Cade to Thoughtful Man’s favourite companion, Dear Reader…

Clara

*/winks…*

Have a Song ❤

HBD Dr One! From The Okie Devil & RBD2

Two things, Dear Reader…

*No, Clicky… /flicks lighter… two items to cover off in this post… /lights up…*

First up, the soon to be published Underdog Anthology V has finally got a title…

*Knot quite… /puffs… Similar, Clicky…*

Six in Five in Four

Leggy tells me there will be 20 stories in all, not including the Foreword and Afterword, which I guess makes…

1260827856769

*/drags… twenty-two… /squints… and knot Tutu, Clicky… /taps ash…*

I have two stories included: ‘Nine Lives‘ and a new ‘Harry‘ story called, ‘Jackanory Jackalope’…

jacka_gif_by_nymla-d8r8ffl

*/coughs … It’s a spring-time book, Clicky… /clears throat… There has to be a rabbit…*

… In witch, the Legend of the Jackalope is recounted by a…

My good friend, Cade, who has three fantabulous stories in UAV, imparted the legend to me. I hope I’ve been able to do it justice ❤

4ff1399596a83ae049d3575ee7ee5aba

*Okay… /drags… thanks for keeping me on track, Clicky… /blows smoke ring…*

The second thing, Dear Reader, is to say a big, fat ‘Happy Birthday’ to The Underdog

Dr One

… And to give him his pressie, made by Cade, from both of us. Leggy may recognise the lyrics 😉

*My besties are SO fucking clever and talented, Clicky… /stubs butt… I AM the luckiest woman in the whirled…*

*Yes, you too, Clicky… /pats snout…*

Five Alive? Defo!

*Ah cool image, Clicky… /pat snout… Actually my hair hasn’t looked like that once this week… /lights up…*

Dear Reader, I have been on holiday these last couple of days, and have finally managed to write my short story about a hedge riding hag

feather powered happiness

*I am pretty happy with the result, Clicky…/puffs…*

…and have submitted it to Leggy for inclusion in the upcoming ‘Underdog Anthology V‘. The story is called ‘Nine Lives’…

*I’ve still got time to mutilate a poem for the Afterword before I go back to work, Clicky… /drags… If I can find the right one… /billows smoke…*

I was also able to spend some time yesterday in the Blue universe. Frank Davis had been snooping around New York, after reading about the proposed bill to stop people from smoking whilst walking the streets of that fair city

*They’re fucking unbelievable! …/flicks ash… First you can’t smoke inside, and now the utopian dreamers are trying to dictate where and how you can smoke outside… /deep drag… Nasty Not-sees indeed… /sighs…*

He was looking at street signs there and came across one that had him perplexed…

‘Just a few yards away was another really weird sign. I think it was some sort of aphorism. But I couldn’t make out what it said, because it seemed to be written in bleeding, dripping letters that said something like Afraid And Dead. I guess that if you were crossing 2nd Avenue and you stopped to try to figure out what the scary sign meant, you’d find out when you got hit by a truck.’

It puzzled me, too; however, the photo Frank included was somewhat fuzzy, so I sent Clicky off for a closer inspection…

sign for blue frank

*Much better but it still looks like worshipers or sumfin’ to me, Clicky… /drags deeply… In sinister black… /snorts smoke…*

… and find an answer.

school for deaf street sign new york

*Those are hands!*

hans gruber

*/reads slowly… School For Deaf …/squints… Dept of Transport… /final drag… Oh! The yellow buses! It’s a bus stop sign, Clicky! … /streams smoke…*

applause sign

*Alright, don’t take the piss… /stubs butt… Well done you, though, on working it out… There’s a good assistant… /pats snout…*

It was a sign for deaf school children, Dear Reader…

…As my good friend, Cade, might say…

‘MYSTERY SOLVED! NEXT!’

music sign

*Okay then…/lights up… And as you’re such a clever Clicky, you can choose…*

Dear Reader… Have a Song 😀

 

Breakfast Embed Part 2 – Sun E Sighed Up

Hello again Dear Reader. In case you’ve forgotten, my name is Mr. Slimey, you are indeed at The LoL, but RooBeeDoo and her assistant Clicky are currently…indisposed.

giphy2

*first doors, now windows. A flying carpet would not be out of place here /me taps foot and ponders…hmmm, when and where is a flying carpet “in-place”? /me wonders*

Actually, I’ve no clue whether Roob and Clicky are indisposed, outdisposed, or striking any other dis or dat pose(s). As far as I know, they are in the same place and places they’ve always been. But who really knows where that is? Who really knows what they are up to?

tumblr_nzqclolqvw1t63sglo1_540

*/me does double-take. At first glance, that window actually looks kinda…normal. But it it?*

We’ll continue to work on the pertinent and relevant as we proceed. But now, and for your continued reading enjoyment, may I present the next installment of RooBeeDoo’s… The Inchoate Egg.

*******

*No, the beginning is on the last post, Clicky… /lights up…*

Many thanks again, Cade, for the lovely intros and exits ❤

And now, Dear Reader, the story continues…

As it happened, I ended up arriving late for the County Business Awards at the Civic Centre. Very late as I’d overslept from the afternoon nap I’d taken, with the intention of being fresh for the evening ahead. Now I felt frazzled; I hate being late.

Despite the area outside the building being clearly designated ‘No Smoking’, there were a good number of glammed up people loitering by the entrance, taking a last puff, as if their lives depended on it.

I felt a hand lightly tap my shoulder and turned to see a vision in shimmering gold in the warm evening sunshine. “Harry! You’re late too. Thank goodness, I didn’t want to arrive on my own!”

Josie fair took my breath away, stood there lithe and tanned in a floor length gown that she appeared to have been poured into. Her thick black locks were piled high on her head, loose tendrils curled down, emphasising the slenderness of her throat and shoulders. And her make-up was as smooth and flawless as the skin tight dress she wore, emphasising her jaunty breasts, flat stomach and lean thighs.

“Whoa! Hi Josie, you look…” It’s difficult to keep the awe out of your voice when faced with utter perfection. Then another thought occurred to me: where’s Alfie? I scanned the road but couldn’t see his car.

“You scrub up nice!” I joked, trying to play it cool and prevent a drooling incident.

Josie giggled nervously, twirling girlishly. “Is it too much? I wasn’t sure, I haven’t been to one of these events before.”

I felt my jaw start to drop at the sight of the satin material clinging to her righteous arse cheeks. Jesus! She can’t be wearing any underwear!

An appreciable number of smokers’ heads turned in our direction, although I could tell none of them were looking at me. “No, you look absolutely stunning. In fact if we win tonight, you should definitely go up on stage to collect the award. It could get us on the front page of the local rag.”

She has no idea how gorgeous she is, I thought, as Josie blushed at my suggestion. I lightly grabbed her elbow, steering her toward the main entrance, unable – and unwilling – to remove the huge smile now plastered across my face. “Come on, we’re really late. We should go inside and find the others.”

More posh frocks and penguin suits milled about inside, quaffing champagne and munching canapés in between small talk. We made our way to the bar area, zeroing in on the sound of booming laughter. For once the Fat Kontroller was already in attendance; he usually liked to make an entrance, but from the ruddy colour of his cheeks I’d say he’d arrived a while ago.

“Harry! Over here!” the Fat Kontroller called out, beckoning us over. “You’re late.”

He was sat at the bar, flanked on one side by Simon and Katrina from our newest client, Clovis International, and on the other by Lol our friendly bank manager. Next to him was Shazza, showing far too much flesh in a low cut dress and braying like a donkey at an amusing anecdote being told by our final guest, who stood with his back to us. I hadn’t met the famous Zander Rhodes yet, but from the look of his slim hips, broad shoulders and slicked back hair, I could tell he was cut from the Alfie mould of manhood. Then I saw the wolfish look flash across Zander’s chiselled features, as he turned to see Josie sashaying toward him. My heart sank, only to be further compounded when I saw the look Josie gave him as hellos and introductions were made.

“Bad luck old girl,” Lol whispered in my ear as he kissed my cheek and squeezed my arse. “Good evening, Miss Egg. You’re looking radiant this evening.”

“Lol Williams, what have I told you about trying to grab my assets,” I replied with a smile, moving his hand up to my waist. “Honestly, you bankers…” I said with an exaggerated eye-roll, loud enough for the others to hear. It was a charade of course. I’d known Lol a lot longer than I’d worked at FAK. You could say we were kindred spirits and he was the only person I’d confided in over my longings for Josie, what really happened at Christmas and the loathing I felt for Shazza and her antics.

Lol laughed at my playful rebuke and quickly shifted his eyes in Shazza’s direction, urging me to look.

As unhappy as I was that Josie and Zander were hitting it off, Shazza looked positively crestfallen at the fizzing chemistry between the two best looking people in the place. She must have thought she was in with a chance with Zander. What a fucking pair of jokes we are, I thought, feeling a rare sense of camaraderie with the dope. It lasted all of a second as Shazza decided to open her mouth.

“Yeah, you look nice, Harry. Is that the same outfit you wore to the Christmas party? I thought that got ruined.”

“Oh no, what happened at the Christmas party?” Katrina asked innocently. She was a recent addition to the Clovis management team, so probably wasn’t aware of the gory details, just eager to join the conversation.

“A chocolate incident,” I replied smoothly, shooting a reassuring look in Josie’s direction. But she wasn’t listening, being totally absorbed in whatever Gaia-saving bollocks Zander, with his designer stubble was feeding her.

I downed the whisky proffered by the Fat Kontroller, who clapped me on the shoulder and stood up. “Right then boys and girls, now we’re all here, let’s get this party started.”

The main room set up with about 20 tables and was filling fast with the Great and the Good of the county’s business community. The level of chatter was high as we picked through the crowds to table four, positioned close to the stage. I decided I should take that as a good sign for award success but, to be honest, I was clutching at straws considering how the rest of my hopes for the evening were panning out.

Shazza had been busy in my absence as the place settings on the table were arranged boy/girl and she’d placed herself between the Fat Kontroller and Zander, with me opposite sandwiched between Lol and Simon. With Katrina sat between her colleague and the Fat Kontroller, Josie had been placed the other side Zander, and the suave environmentalist was availing himself of the opportunity to be as attentive as possible.

Lol gave my knee a reassuring squeeze under the table. “I’d offer to swap seats with you, Harry, but I don’t think you’d get a look in,” he muttered out of the side of his mouth.

“Don’t sweat it, love,” I reassured him, “I’m here to work. Here, have some some wine.” I poured him a large glass of Barolo before filling my own and grabbing a bottle of Chardonnay. “Simon? Katrina? Red or white?”

And so the evening progressed, through three passable mass catered courses, made more palatable by my excellent selection of wines. The Fat Kontroller and I worked on Simon and Katrina, the only actual clients at the table, whilst Lol tried his best to engage Zander and Josie in conversation. He was fairly successful too through his keen interest of in cycling and holidaying in Asia. Bless him, he’d even tried to include Shazza in their conversation with less success – she was finding the evening hard going, fidgeting in her seat, shifting from one conversation to the other, unable to contribute to either. She could drink though. Warily I watched her find solace in her wineglass, looking more and more miserable. I didn’t know whether to feel concern at what she was capable of after a skinful, or sheer delight at her self-imposed discomfort. But on the whole, I sided with delight – at least she wasn’t gobbing off.

Eventually the awards presentation began, starting with several dull but worthy eulogies of the strength and diversity of the county business community. We sat and clapped through numerous categories of award before they got to the one we were shortlisted for. I don’t mind admitting to a jolt of nerves as ‘Green Business of the Year’ was called out. My submission was F A Kontrell’s first attempt at winning any business gongs. Writing it up had been a doddle and success would mean more brownie points for me. As much as I liked my recent pay rise, I still preferred to earn it than get one for being merely non-litigious.

Under the table I felt Lol’s hand cover my own as I squeezed and scrunched the napkin on my lap. I lent across him toward Josie, “You’ll come up on stage won’t you, if we win?”

“Ooh can I come up too?” Shazza suddenly piped up, visibly brighting at the prospect of a bit of reflected glory. She turned to the Fat Kontroller, “If Harry and Josie are going up, can I go up too?” she squealed.

“Tush, Sharon, it’s not the Oscars,” he replied calmly, patting her on the arm. “And we haven’t won anything yet.”

It seemed to take an age for the presenter to read through all the names and for the nominees’ logos to appear on the screen behind him. You could cut the tension around our table with a knife.

“And the winner is…” He opened the envelope and pulled a card. “F A Kontrell!”

We erupted in a chorus of cheers and whoops. We’d only fucking won it!

With scraped back chairs, the four FAKkers got up to collect the award, receiving congratulatory hugs from the rest of our guests. Zander seized the opportunity to kiss Josie full on the mouth. She kissed him back. Slut! You’ve only just met him!

“Oi! Don’t smudge your lipstick,” Lol playfully chastised Josie, pulling her from Zander’s embrace.

I grabbed Josie’s hand and tugged sharply. “Come on! Let’s get you on the front page.”

Despite the huge quantity of alcohol he’d knocked back during the evening, the Fat Kontroller was steady and measured ascending the stairs, whereas Shazza was bouncing around like a demented yoyo. Josie and I joined them under the bright spotlights, standing behind our Glorious Leader while he made his acceptance speech. We posed with our trophy for the official photographer with beaming smiles, arms wrapped around each other’s backs. I could feel Josie’s right boob pressed up against me, my hand lightly resting alongside her satin covered left. This is probably the closest I’ll ever get to touching her tits, I lamented whilst we all shouted “Cheese!” at the camera.

Lol had procured a bottle of Bollinger and was already pouring it out by the time we returned to our table. “A toast to F A Kontrell,” he said, handing me a bubbling champagne flute. “And to Miss Egg and her award submission writing prowess!”

“Oh give over, Lol,” I said punching his arm, but loving his efforts to big me up. “It was a team effort,” I stated magnanimously.

“Oh no, Harry,” Shazza said slyly, handing me the trophy we’d just collected. “You definitely deserve this!”

It might have been the nervous anticipation or the excitement of winning, but I hadn’t fully appreciated the trophy’s shape until that moment. It was a heavy, crystal egg on a pedestal base. “Because it’s the shape of my name?” I asked.

“No,” Shazza hooted maliciously. “For your enormous butt plug collection!!”

Jesus fuck! What the hell?!

Undeterred by lack of laughter from the rest of us, Shazza cackled wildly and dug in. “You know, to go with one you got for Chrissmass!” she said oblivious to the shocked faces around the table.

Josie pulled away from Zander and stood up. “Sharon! Take that back,” she reprimanded her.

“An’ you can shut up, you snobby bitch! Or will Alfie beat me up, too?” Shazza sneered. A red flush crept from her chest, up her neck and flooding her contorted face. She pawed at Zander’s sleeve, “You know her boyfrien’ beat ‘arry up, doncha? Thought she was trying it on and tried to drown her in chocolate. Didn’t kishy prisshy pants tell you?”

“Sharon! It’s time you went home. I’ll call you a taxi,” the Fat Kontroller said, placing an arm around her shoulders to shepherd her away from the table.

“And get your hands off me!” Shazza shouted angrily, squirming out from the Fat Kontroller’s, causing a bout of rubber-necking from the surrounding tables. “I’ll do you! I’ll tell HR!”

Josie pulled herself upright. She looked magnificent, eyes glittering with righteous fury. “I am HR, Shazza! Duly noted. Now go home, you’re drunk!”

Shazza suddenly looked confused at the turn of events. The room had descending in silence at her outburst. Even the presenter had stopped speaking and was peering down at our table. Talk about snatching defeat in the face of victory!

“Oh Mishter K, I’m sorry…” Shazza slurred, allowing him to lead her away but the drunken cow wasn’t quite done. “Call me!” she sloshed back at Zander. Fat chance, you never pick up the fucking phone!

Zander shifted away from Josie, “You have a boyfriend?”

“Oh, um, I…” Josie faltered, losing her composure.

“Harry dear, what was all that about?” Katrina asked open mouthed. “Was that about the chocolate incident?”

“Erm,” I hesitated, “There was a misunderstanding with a chocolate fountain someone had bought Josie for Christmas.”

“You have a boyfriend and a fountain of chocolate?” Zander accused Josie indignantly. “Do you have any idea of the environmental devastation wrought by intense cocoa farming in West Africa?”

“Katrina. Simon. I am so sorry for the upset,” I apologised, refilling their glasses. I slumped back in my seat and drained my Champagne flute. “Oh god! What a fucking disaster,” I said under my breath.

“Don’t sweat it, love,” Lol said laughing and gave me a hug. “Just look at this way, Harry, not only did you win an award tonight but it looks like you might be getting shot of Shazza at last.”

“Heh,” I scoffed sceptically and looked over at the perceptible rift opening up between a suspicious looking Zander and Josie, guiltily gnawing at her bottom lip with pearly white teeth. Yeah, I conceded, things could have turned out a whole lot worse.

*******

There may or may not be a Part 3 Dear Reader. I don’t yet know, as I’m only writing the top and bottom portions, and RooBeeDoo is filling in the middle bits + doing any formatting/making any all decisions. A tough job I’m sure.

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*can we effectively operate without knowing the particulars of what others are doing and/or might be doing? Or does the veil need…some assistance?*

I guess we’ll know, when and if we know. If not, we’ll know. Don’t worry…I’m not eggzactly sure what that means either.

Queue song. 😉

*******

Shithead Jen

*Snot shit… /facepalms… The quote is, “It’s not shit”, Clicky… /rolls eyes… Couldn’t find a slightly long gif? …/stubs butt…*

Clicky and I decided we couldn’t not include an, um, Epi-chocolate-logue to end, Dear Reader…

fire screen

*Fanks, Clicky… /pats snout…*

The elevator journey up to the office the next morning was interminably long and extra bumpy, rattling my brains and turning my stomach. Shazza wasn’t manning reception but that was nothing new. I strolled round to my desk clutching our trophy in one hand and my head in the other. The Fat Kontroller was waiting for me, looking as fresh as a daisy. How does he do it?

“Good morning, Harry. We made the press,” he said handing me a copy of the local paper. “Front page.”

I placed the trophy on my desk and sat down, spreading the newspaper out and tried to focus. Josie had indeed made the front page, but so had Shazza – the awards photographer had captured the commotion. He’d even managed to capture the line of spittle streaming from Shazza’s spiteful mouth.

I read out the headline, “’Fracas at Local Business Awards. What a FAK Up!’. Oh bollocks!”

“You’ll be able to sort won’t you, Harry,” the Fat Kontroller said, picking up the trophy and polished it with his sleeve. “There’s a Good Egg.”

Happy Easter, Dear Reader. And don’t forget to stuff your faces with as much chocolate as you can because, next year… who know?

Have a Song 😀

Breakfast Embed Part 1 – Ova Easty

Dear Reader, I hate to be the one to inform you of this, but the task has fallen to me to inform you of that, which you do not know. Hang on a sec…

giphy

*wtf was that noise? Nope…no one there. Musta been the wind …/me shrugs…*

Anyway, erm, where was I? OH YEAH!!! Tragedy has befallen RooBeeDoo, and she appears to have lost her fucking mind. Mainly because she asked me to write the opening and closing bits of a post or two. And who am I, you might ask? My name is Mr. Slimey, but I don’t mind if you call me Mr. S.

Begging your pardon, but would you mind hanging on again for one more moment? I shan’t be long.

giphy1

* Hmmm…that’s weird. Strange noises, strange events, but no space dolphin to be found anywhere. How odd…*

The story that follows is a story written by RooBeeDoo called The Inchoate Egg, and it’s a good one. I know it’s a good story because I’ve read it. Good? Nah…it’s great. A great story, that I now present it to you without much further delay. Just gotta close all these random opening doors.

Enjoy your read, and catch ya on the flipside.

*******

airplane glance

*Aww… Nice work with the doors btw, Clicky… /pats snout… Cade’s got a story in the next Anthology… /scratches nose… ’bout a door or sumfin’…*

Thank you, Cade ❤

Dear Reader, as it’s nearly Easter, I thought I’d post my second story from ‘The Underdog Anthology II: Tales The Hollow Bunnies Tell’, last year’s Easter-themed, collective offering

*Oh I thought it would be fun, Clicky… /lights up… if Cade provided bread… /drags… and I provided the filling for a Missive sammich… /streams smoke…*

I’ve split it in two, so ‘The Inchoate Egg’ will be concluded in a following post. Hopefully today…

*/squints… ‘Vanillin’? …/flicks ash… Do you think they mean vanilla, Clicky? …/shrugs…*

… If not, then tomorrow. Enjoy! 😀

The Inchoate Egg

by Roo B. Doo

“Patience is a virtue, Harry,” Payroll Pammy chimed as she glided past the elevator on the way to the kitchen, carrying a tray of empty mugs. I was inside the lift, gnashing my teeth while I waited for the doors of the ancient mechanism to close. Pammy evidently shared the consensus opinion of the minions at F A Kontrell, that the elevator to our 5th floor offices is ‘very slow’.

More like fucking glacial, I fumed, as I stood over the control panel and angrily jabbed at the ‘door close’ button, each jab accompanied by an entreaty to “close, you fucking bastard.” Slowly, the door halves started their whiny crawl toward each other and were just about to touch when a smooth, tanned hand, topped with exquisitely polished pink fingernails, halted their long awaited reunion by adroitly sliding between them.

“Hold the lift, please!”

I recognised both the hand and voice, and my chest tightened at the thought of being in close proximity with the office goddess I’d lusted after. I felt a tinge of fear too, if I’m honest, as the last time we’d been alone together hadn’t exactly worked out that well for me. Josie looked surprised to see me lurking in the corner of the lift, finger still hovering over the ‘door close’ button. It must have looked as if I were deliberately trying to shut her out.

“Oh, hello Harry,” she said sheepishly. She moved to the opposite corner at the back of the lift, putting as much distance between us as she could. “How are you?”

“I’ve been worse.”

The words hung between us and I wondered if, like me, she was remembering the night several months ago when Alfie, her brick shithouse of a boyfriend, had tried to kill me over a misunderstanding. He came home from work unexpectedly and thought I was trying to debauch his girl with an obscene Secret Santa gift. As If!

Of course I had been trying to gain access to the fair Josie’s knickers, but not with anything so crass as the oversized sex toy that Alfie had seized upon. I’d been using an entirely more tasteful gift, targeting Josie’s weakness for chocolate. It was classy and it had nearly worked too.

I turned back to the control panel and resumed my button jabbing, minus the swearing. For once the lift doors effortlessly glided together first time with barely a murmur, sealing us in. The lift compensated for the unexpected quiet efficiency with a gut flipping jolt before starting its grindingly slow journey downwards.

Well this is awkward, I thought.

Josie and I hadn’t really spoken since that night. She’d been avoiding me and my ardour had been tempered somewhat by the painfully real threat of a good hiding from her boyfriend. Mr Kontrell, a.k.a. the Fat Kontroller, had called me a ‘Good Egg’ after I’d declined to press charges – so reluctant was he to see his company dragged through the mud that he offered me a substantial pay rise in return for keeping my mouth shut.

It was an offer I was happy to accept. Besides, I didn’t want to sabotage any future chance with Josie by being the cause of her boyfriend being locked up, no matter how much the animal deserved it. That I’d survived Alfie’s ire at all was entirely down to the girl herself, who’d stop his murderous rampage with a substantial kick to his bollocks. I only wished I’d been conscious to see it.

The silence between us was deafening over the groaning lift mechanism. I decided to break it. “So, are you bunking off early?”

I turned toward Josie and she smiled back shyly. Fuck, but she is beautiful, I thought, and felt my stomach flutter. I smiled back, drinking in the delicacy of her elfin features framed by glossy, black hair, and not to mention a smoking hot body that would cause Elle McPherson to weep. To think, I’d been that close to sticking my tongue down her throat.

“Yes, kind of,” she replied, “I’ve been asked to attend the county-wide business awards ceremony tonight, so I’m going to work from home this afternoon.”

I took a sharp intake of breath. “The one at the civic centre?” I asked slowly. What the fuck!

“Yes,” Josie hesitated, “Shazza’s asked me if I’d go. Apparently one of the guests can’t make it now.”

“Oh right.” I nodded slowly and tried to keep my voice neutral, “we’re up for ‘Green Business of the Year’. I wrote our submission.”

“Are you going as well?” Josie asked with surprise. There was that awkwardness again and we hadn’t even passed the 3rd floor yet.

“Well yeah, that’s why I’m bunking off. I’ve booked the afternoon off so that I’ve got plenty of time to get ready and arrive before our guests do,” I explained calmly whilst fuming inside. I’d only just left the office, for fuck’s sake! What client? When did they pull out and why the fuck hadn’t our jumped up bitch of a receptionist told me about it? It was my event to organise after all, not Shazza’s. “Did Sharon give you any more detail?”

“Only the dress code and start time.” Josie gently gnawed at her bottom lip with perfect white teeth. “Harry, about what happened at Christmas…”

“It’s not necessary, Josie,” I said holding up a hand. “It was a misunderstanding.”

The slowest lift in Christendom was about to creak past the first floor and now she wanted to talk. “I’m not…” she trailed off. “You know…”

“A raving chocoholic? Yeah you are.” I winked at her. “Look, what’s done is done. I’m happy if we can remain friends.” It was a lie but what could I do?

She looked relieved and I felt relieved we’d finally reached the ground floor. I held back and let Josie leave. One, it occurred to me that Alfie, who chauffeured her to and from work, might be waiting outside, and it probably wasn’t a good idea for him to see us emerge from the building together. And two, I had a bit of unfinished business to attend to.

“I’m just gonna go back up and see Shazza,” I explained when Josie turned round to see if I was following. “I’d better find out who’s dropped out and if there’s anything else she’s neglected to tell me.”

“Okay, I’ll see you later tonight then, Harry.” She gave me that shy smile again and left.

I waited until she was out of earshot. “Yes!” I hissed under my breath and punched the air before returning to jab at the lift buttons once again. “Come on you bastard, close!”

Quel surprise! Shazza wasn’t manning the reception desk, the job she was paid to do but seldom bothered with. When I did find her, she was sitting in my chair, at my desk, looking rapturously up at the Fat Kontroller, who in return was getting an eyeful of her lumpy tits. There really isn’t enough mind bleach in the world to purge me of that horrific mental tableaux. I resisted the impulse to retch.

“What’s this I hear, Josie’s going tonight?” I walked up and sat on my desk between the two of them.

“Ah Harry! I was just going over tonight’s guest list with Shazza,” the Fat Kontroller said, looking a little flustered. And why not? I’d just caught him ogling our fat receptionist’s cleavage. Dirty old fuck – Shaz is at least half his age.

“So who’s pulled out?” I plucked the guest list from Shazza’s hand, looked at it and put it down beside me. “And when did we know?”

“Phil Gutteridge and not that long ago,” Shazza answered defensively.

“That’s my fault, Harry,” the Fat Kontroller added. “I thought you’d gone for the day so I asked Sharon to invite Josie.”

“Okay. But why can’t he make it?” Shit! Phil is one of our more reliable clients, an absolutely corker of a guest for these sort of shindigs. He never passed up an offer of free grub and booze, and watching him eat and drink was a sight to behold, like a ravenous Serengeti lion attacking a gazelle carcass – worthy of David Attenborough narration.

“He broke his arm at the gym this morning,” the Fat Kontroller continued. “Running on the treadmill, apparently. He missed his mouth taking a big gulp of water. Slipped in the resulting puddle and down he went.”

I clamped a hand over my mouth to subdue a laugh – Phil isn’t the smallest of men, or healthiest. “Damn! I warned him about gyms. And drinking water.”

But the Fat Kontroller wasn’t finished. “I’m afraid Mrs Kontrell won’t be able to make it now either.”

“No. Is your wife poorly again?” I asked with deep concern.

“Yes, she has one of her heads on.” At least the Fat Kontroller had the decency to look embarrassed trotting out the familiar excuse. It was uncanny how often the chain smoking, soap opera addicted Mrs K pulled out of company events due to having ‘one of her heads on’. In the two and a half years I’d worked for the Fat Kontroller, I hadn’t met her once.

“So who are we going to get to replace her? A client?” I asked him. I was purposefully not including Shazza in the conversation, but now, from the corner of my eye, I caught her suddenly sitting up straighter, a simpering grin replacing the petulant pout on her face. Oh no, I thought. No, please, not Shaz!

“During Easter school holidays? No, it’s much too short notice to ask any other clients now,” the Fat Kontroller opined. “Happily young Sharon has offered to step into the breach.” He flourished his hand toward a beaming Shazza.

Oh fuck! That was all I needed, having a sneering, drunken Shazza, making sly digs at me all evening and googly eyes at the Fat Kontroller. “Are you sure there’s no one else we could ask? Tonight is kind of a big deal for F A Kontrell. What about Phil’s deputy?”

To give him credit, the Fat Kontroller did look as if he were seriously considering my suggestion, but I could tell that ship had already sailed. Still, it felt good to see Shazza’s grin falter and disappear again. She threw me a malevolent look, which I returned with raised eyebrows and condescending smile. Squirm bitch!

“No, I think we’ll stick with the revised line up,” the Fat Kontroller decided. “Although it probably won’t do us any harm to have a couple of beautiful additions on our table.” He winked at Shazza who visibly preened.

Ugh! I mentally grimaced, I fucking hope you’re referring to Josie and Shaz and not just to Shazza’s tits!

“Right. I’ll make sure not to tell Mrs K that…” If I ever get to meet her. I gave the Fat Kontroller a friendly nudge. God knows he deserved it for the mental abuse inflicted by his flirting with Shazza. As for our ambitious receptionist, I hadn’t forgiven her yet for the role she played in my Christmas beating – it was her inappropriate Secret Santa gift to me that Alfie had taken offence at.

“I’ll make up the new place cards for the table,” Shazza said, peering at the guest list on the desk. “Zander Rhodes? The fashion designer’s gonna be on our table?”

“Zandra Rhodes is a fashion designer, Shaz” I said barely able to keep the contempt out of my voice. “Zander Rhodes, however, works for Green Crusaders. They’re an environmental charity we’ve been tapping up.”

“Networking with, Harry,” the Fat Kontroller corrected me with a chuckle. “I met him at a function in the City. Nice lad, very driven. There’s some synergy there that could be mutually beneficial.”

That’s what I said – tapping up! I thought with a mental sigh. I got up to leave, “Well, alright then, if you and Shaz have got it all under control, I shall take my afternoon off now and bugger off home. See you both later.”

This time I decided to forego the extended lift experience and took the stairs.

Will the Fat Kontroller win his the prize? Does Harry pull? Will Josie allow it? And how much drink can Shazza safely handle?

*The spread… /stubs butt…*

… Find out next time. Now, ova to Cade…

*******

I apologize for all the strangeness and strange events Dear Reader. I’ve not a clue what is going on with all the self-opening doors. Next thing you know, windows will be opening entirely on their own, and entire houses may suddenly be prone to levitation. Excuse me one more moment if you please…

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*all kinds of unusual shit going on to be sure, but nothing really…”out of the ordinary”…per se /me scratches chin…*

Meh…I’ll see to that in a minute. But I’m confident that we’ll get, whatever this is, worked out to a logical conclusion. We may even stumble across some help and helpers along the way.

helphasalmostarrived
*no…that’s more along the lines of “professional help”, so I think their particular services are unlikely… /me looks around for anything…fishy…*

And on that note…let’s cue us up a song.

Hag With A Fag

*Afternoon, Clicky… /pats snout… What’s the Song in aid of? … /lights up… *

*Oh… /rolls eyes… Leggy is trying… /drags…*

*Eighteen credits, eh? …/flicks ash…*

Good afternoon, Dear Reader! 😀 It’s snowing again. Not as much as last time, but Thoughtful Man is out working in it…

*Hee is indeed… /blows smoke ring…*

… And I’m sat here, on Sat-‘ere-day, pondering the idea of  an anthology short story about ‘hedge riding’…

Three hedge riders in a rowThree hedge riders in a row 1

*Great mates… /puff contentedly… I’m so lucky, Clicky…*

Can someone be both a Hedge Rider and Hedge Witch? Yes if they are practicing crossing the veil, second sight and also find their core practice in their garden etc. If one is performing herbal magic without the Journey work, divination,
and spirit work then they are practicing Hedge Witchery and not Hedge Riding. These practices very much compliment each other. Hedge Riders use poison herbs to aid in flight, while the Hedge Witch is able to connect with the spirit world through meditations.

… And flights of fancy.

‘The Solanaceae, or nightshades, are an economically important family of flowering plants. The family ranges from annual and perennial herbs to vines, lianas, epiphytes, shrubs, and trees, and includes a number of important agricultural crops, medicinal plants, spices, weeds, and ornamentals. Many members of the family contain potent alkaloids, and some are highly toxic, but many, including tomatoes, potatoes, eggplant, bell/chili peppers, and tobacco are widely used.

Looking out the window, I see that our garden hedge is cloaked in snow…

Haw (n.)

“enclosure,” Old English haga “enclosure, fortified enclosure; hedge,” from Proto-Germanic *hag-(source also of Old Norse hagi, Old Saxon hago, German Hag “hedge;” Middle Dutch hage, Dutch haag, as in the city name The Hague), from PIE root *kagh- “to catch seize; wickerwork fence” (see hedge (n.), and compare hag). Meaning “fruit of the hawthorn bush” (Old English) is perhaps short for *hægberie.

… thinking I’m glad I don’t have to go outside to smoke in this weather. I’d hate to be made go outside to smoke today, Dear Reader. Standing on the street smoking makes me feel like a whore…

*Yikes! /final drag… That’s a different kind of hag, Clicky… /stubs butt… Nightmarish all the same. I can use that…*

Stay warm and enjoy your weekend, Dear Reader. Oh, and… Have a Song 😉

*A train of thought for a flight of fancy eh, Clicky? /pats snout… Come on, I’d better start writing it… /lights up…*