Bargains and Debts

This is Part 10 of an on-going serial I’m writing called, “Lyr the Enchanter”. To read the story from the beginning, you can find the story index, here.

Never strike a bargain with a monster. You will, most likely, get turned into one yourself, or get eaten by one. I didn’t like those options. But did I have a choice?

Before I had a chance to think, let alone answer, there was an ear-splitting crash in the twilight above. The monstrous sea-snake screamed before engaging in magical battle. I darted for cover to avoid getting caught in the spell-storm.

There was nowhere to hide, but for a slight depression in the cliff-face; it could hardly be called a cave. But there I sought refuge, and waited.

It was dawn when the storm ceased. I stumbled out of my shelter, surprised by the calm brightness all about me. Of the sea-snake there was no sign.

Arastia waited for me on the shore. ‘I have saved you, Lyr, from the scheming of sea-serpents.’ She smiled. ‘You owe me a debt.’

Written for Crimson’s Creative Challenge #10 – And this week, I am exactly equal to the max word limit of 150!  Yay!


Birds of a Feather

I missed the first week of the #2019picoftheweek Photography Challenge, hosted by Of Maria Antonia, but, as I was choosing this week’s photo, I came across two related photos and decided to post both, one for this week and one for last week…

A note about my responses for the challenge: The photos I post will be a mix of old and new.  I’ve taken so many photos over the years, it will be nice to give a handful of them a purpose, but I also look forward to taking my camera out and snapping new ones too.

So on to the photos for Weeks’ 1 & 2…

These photos were taken at the beginning of 2017, when I was going through my moody black and white photo phase, which I think suits the personality of geese perfectly.  Here we have a number of Canada Geese swimming peacefully up the River Great Ouse, which passes through my village in North Bedfordshire, UK.

Week 1 – Three of A Kind

Taken: January 2017

Week 2 – All in a Row

Taken: February 2017

Silent Silhouette

I close my eyes, and I see you

In outline only

A shadow before the sun

A silent silhouette

I know you not

Un-named stranger

Why are you here?

Why are you here now?

You neither move nor speak

Can you hear me?

I’m not frightened

Should I be?

Not until I open my eyes

The same inky shape

Stands in the doorway

Watching, waiting…

Written for Weekend Writing Prompt #89 – Silhouette | Word count: 65

Weekend Writing Prompt #89 – Silhouette

A word prompt to get your creativity flowing this weekend.  How you use the prompt is up to you.  Write a piece of flash fiction, a poem, a chapter for your novel…anything you like.  Or take the challenge below – there are no prizes – it’s not a competition but rather a fun writing exercise.  If you want to share what you come up with, please leave a link to it in the comments.

Word Prompt



The challenge is simple: each week you will be given an exact number of words you can use to write a poem or piece of prose.  You can use any format or style you like; go wherever your inspiration takes you.  The only rules are these:

  • your poem / prose must contain this week’s word.  The word does not have to count towards the exact word count total – it can be in the title, or the first letters of the lines of a poem can spell it out – you can be as creative as you want as long as it’s there somewhere.
  • the length of your poem / prose must match the number of words stated in this week’s challenge.  No more.  No less.

Can’t wait to read what you have come up with!

Weekend Writing Prompt Year 1 Anthology – Read for free here


Here There Be Monsters

This is Part 9 of an on-going serial I’m writing called, “Lyr the Enchanter”. To read the story from the beginning, you can find the story index, here.

I walked along the shore of the Isle of In-Between, cautious not to get too close to the water’s edge. Even on the foreshore I wasn’t safe from the monsters that dwelt beneath the indigo waves.

Gazing out over the water, I saw the skeletal remains of the island’s guardians turning to quicksilver as the sun set. They shimmered, and glimmered, and transformed; nothing was ever static here. It waxed and waned according to an ancient magic I could not see nor hope to understand.

The only spellcraft I understood was enchanting. And now my wife wanted me to use it to take another’s life.

My dark thoughts were disturbed as something broke the surface of the water, rearing up high above me.

‘Lyr the Enchanter,’ it hissed, snake-like, turning its dead face towards me. ‘I have a proposition for you. What would you bargain in exchange to leave this island?’

Written for Crimson’s Creative Challenge #9 – And this week, I’m only 1 word over the 150 word limit – woohoo!

Bound but not Blinded

This is Part 8 of an on-going serial I’m writing called, “Lyr the Enchanter”. To read the story from the beginning, you can find the story index, here.

I had fallen in love with Arastia from the moment I laid eyes upon her. It had been my downfall. Everything that came after could trace its roots back to that beginning. Even now I still loved her, though my love was more cautious than before; I was no longer blinded by it. However, I was bound to it. To her.

‘It’s too early to reveal all to you, Lyr, but I need you. I always need you.’

I sighed at the lies. ‘I don’t deal in death, Arastia.’

‘Perhaps not before, but you will this time, my love.’ She smiled softly.

‘Will I? Why?’

‘Because I ask it of you,’ she whispered. We were speaking of murder, yet she was the perfect picture of serenity.

‘Until then, I cannot permit you to leave me.’ She flicked her wrist and cast a spell. That was all it took to make this hateful island my new prison and my wife, my gaoler.

Written for Crimson’s Creative Challenge #8 – I’m starting the year still exceeding the word limit, but at least with this instalment it’s only by 11 words

Unearthing Secrets

I had never built a brick wall before so was unsure how far down the foundations needed to go.  Was it as deep as the wall was to be tall?  Or was I confusing that with a tree and its roots?

I paused, momentarily muddled, before resuming digging.  Better to have more foundations than not enough.

When the trench was two foot deep, the spade struck something with a sickening sound.  White bone gleamed from out of the soil.  That’s when I realised I would have been happy with a fence.

Written for Weekend Writing Prompt # 88 – Foundations  |  Word count: 91