Book of the Month Update to Jazz Age Wednesdays 8 ― Pip and the Potent Poltergeist

Wednesday, November 1, 2017

Sheiks and Shebas, welcome to Jazz Age Wednesdays! 

(I’m probably causing frustrations by doing this… but I had something special to add, and I had already launched this mid-week post… So bear with me.  Thanks to Dan AntionOIKOS™-RedaktionVicto Dolorefragglerocking, and Olga olganm who had already commented.)

cropped-img_6396.jpgMy November is off to a pos-i-lutely neon-bright start!  I’m so giddy, people will think I’m zozzled, but get this — Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I  is the featured book of the month* for November at Hugh’s Views & News!  I hope you’ll click on over and visit Hugh’s blog.  It’s the bee’s knees, and so is Hugh! 

Seriously, I’m so excited! 

November 1st is also the kickoff of National Novel Writing Month* and yes, I opted in for that insanity again.  However, I’ll give an update on that this weekend, with the Thistledown Hiatus post, since that is the reason why the serial is well… on hiatus.

Now, let’s get to the Jazz Age!

Halloween was only yesterday and I’m still feeling that spirit.  So, I am sharing a ghostly tidbit from the not yet “book-ized” 1920s serial, “A Ghost in the Kitchen — Three Ingredients II.”

Pip and the Potent Poltergeist 

lucille-ball-1937-stage-door

The fizzy purple vapor dissipated and I found that my eyes had not deceived me.  A strange, semi-solid man bowed before me.  I was too stunned to think.  It seemed like the purple mist befuddled my head.  I gradually became aware of one other thing, a shrill unpleasant sound that went on and on…

“Andy!” I cried, suddenly becoming aware again.

My dear old friend Andy Avis, was screaming like a school girl.  I grabbed his arm and shook him.  He stopped screaming.  For five seconds.  Then he screamed right into my face.

I felt like slapping him — only partly to bring him to his senses.  However, riotous giggling shocked both of us to silence.  The ghost stood in the kitchen bent double with laughter.  Apparently he found Andy’s reaction most amusing.Casper cooking

As seems to happen to me in times of stress, one detail stood out to me more than anything else.  I turned to Andy but pointed to the apparition. 

“You can see him?” I said, and I wasn’t sure if it was a question or an accusation.

I had been told that though I hadn’t known it, I had the gift for seeing spirits.  I was also told that Granny Phanny could too, but my grandmother had suppressed the
ability.  However, as you might expect, not everyone could see ghosts.  So I was surprised that Andy was able to see the spirit sitting sprawled at Granny’s kitchen table.

Before I took another breath I whirled on the ghost and demanded, “How can he see you?”

The apparition who had materialized from the gaudy bottle of spirits sobered.  He stuck out his lower lip in an exaggerated expression of consideration that I had a feeling was a habit with him.

“Well, I am one powerful poltergeist, Signorina!” he said between hiccupping giggles.  “It’s no effort for me to let anyone see me, and sometimes they do whether or not I’m intending it,” the ghost told me.

I thought poor Andy’s eyes were going to pop right out of his head.

The spirit looked longingly at the food on the table.  Andy and I hadn’t even started our meal.  He licked his lips and sighed. 

“Signorina, a nice Stilton cheese would be beautiful with that,” he said wistfully.Vintage girl broken dish card

“Err… Would you care for anything?” I asked, knowing that after all, Granny would expect me to be a good hostess.  Then I gave my head a shake.  Had I really said that?

“I rarely partake.  Sometimes that doesn’t turn out so well,” he said, but his eyes never strayed from the food.  “But if I could just take a whiff,” he said leaning toward the table — and closer to Andy.

With a blanched face and panicked eyes Andy staggered backward.  There was nowhere for him to go, so he bumped hard against the table.  The ornate wine bottle wobbled precariously at the edge for a moment, and then it crashed to the blue and white tile floor.  It shattered into dozens of pieces.

The ghost shrieked.

Andy shrieked when the ghost did.

I shrieked at both of them to stop their shrieking!

However, I had an unexpected concern for the spirit.  “Are you all right?  I mean, I’ll bet you were bound to that bottle somehow.  Weren’t you?  Are you going to be okay?”1920s Owl Clock

“Yes!  No!  Both!” he replied, rapid fire in his strange accent.  Then he gave a giddy giggle.  “Thank God that gaudy bottle is no more!  Can you imagine making your home in such an ugly vessel?” he commented.  “However I must have something, or there will be… consequences.  Ah! Symbol of the wisdom I should have had in life!” he exclaimed when he saw the carved wooden owl clock.  “This will do,” he said even as he held the clock to his chest and then disappeared.

The clock dropped the short distance to the counter, landing with a wobble and a clunk.  Andy and I looked at each other in stunned silence.  A moment later the spirit remerged from the owl clock.  He sprawled into one of the white ladder back chairs my grandfather had made.  That was when I noticed the Renaissance era garb beneath his apron.

Bene!  What a relief!” he said and lifted his brimless toque to mop his brow, or at least I thought the chef’s hat was called a toque.

I leaned closer, wondering if ghosts could sweat. 

“If you didn’t like the bottle…” I began, but wasn’t sure how to ask what I wanted to know.  “Well, how come you’re — ” my words failed me so I pointed to the shards of the purple bottle.

“Ah Signorina,” the ghost began.  “It is a poignant tale.  I was chef to the Patriarch of Aquileia at the Vatican.  I always preferred the pun as a form of humor, and the Pope, he shared this with me.  However, one evening we served dinner to a plethora of patrons, speaking Punjabi, Parsi, and Philippine.  I presented a perfect prawn pasta…  Perhaps something went awry with the translations…  But — you see, the short of it is that I pissed off the Pope!  And this predicament is my fate,” the ghost said with a mournful expression.

I marveled at the poltergeist’s capacity to use the letter “P” so many times in one sentence.  I gave a hard blink to clear my mind.  Then I looked from him to Andy, with no idea what to say or do next.  However, Andy found his voice.

“You’re not a genie then?  You really are a ghost?” Andy asked.  “Too bad.  Granting wishes would have been a great ice breaker,” he joked, abruptly loosening up to my surprised relief.  “We don’t have to rub the owl clock’s belly to get you to come out, do we?”

1920s Vaudeville Cats postcard

1920s Vaudeville Furries Postcard

The poltergeist gave Andy that pursed lip expression, but then laughed heartily slapping his knee.  “No, young patron.  I can come and go as I please, so long as I bind myself to an object.  And mind you, I can’t be without one for more than a moment.  However, I tend to lose track of the time.  When I went into that gaudy bottle, I was in a great hurry, but that’s another story.  Anyhow, I think I was intoxicated on the noxious potion, so I did not wake for some little while.  Then you uncorked the bottle, and the rest, as you say, is history,” he said with a hiccup.

My nose wrinkled at the thought of being inside a bottle that smelled like that one had.  I said it must have been awful.  The apparition burped, blushed, and excused himself, making me think he might have become intoxicated from being cooped up in the wine bottle.

“Ah, one gets accustomed to the aroma,” he said affably.  “But now you speak of such… do you have any rum?  I do have a preference for the spirit, tee-hee!” he said with a giggle, inordinately pleased with his joke that a spirit would like spirits.

When I explained prohibition, he looked very downcast.  He somehow hiccuped and burped at the same time.  Then he made a shocked comment about the state of things that would allow such a law.  Andy and I agreed enthusiastically.

I finally found my manners and thought to introduce myself and Andy.  The ghost bowed again, with a slight wobble.  “My great pleasure, Signorina o Signore.  I present myself, Maestro Martino.  Please do me the honor of calling me Maestro,” he said with a flourish.

The end… or the beginning.  It depends on how you look at it.

***

I hope you enjoyed this snippet from A Ghost in the Kitchen.  Yes, you’re right — that means there’s another novel on the way for Pip!  As you see she is reunited with her pal Andy.

Now I engage in the requisite shameless self-promotion…  Here are links to the books about Pip and her friends.

Bijou front only 2

Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I

Novel-book-The Three Things Serial Story-Teagan Riordain Geneviene-The Writer Next Door-Vashti Q-spotlight-author

The Three Things Serial Story: A Little 1920s Story Kindle 

Thanks so very much for visiting.  You’re the cat’s pajamas! 

 

Copyright © 2014 and 2017 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene

All rights reserved. 

No part of this work may be reproduced, scanned, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission.  Please do not participate in or encourage piracy of copyrighted materials in violation of the author’s rights. 

 

81 thoughts on “Book of the Month Update to Jazz Age Wednesdays 8 ― Pip and the Potent Poltergeist

  1. Reblogged this on Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life and commented:
    Another of my usual Saturday reblogs from Teagan Geneviene who despite writing thousands of words for the annual November writing challenge is still managing to share her Jazz Age Wednesdays with us.. A celebration this week too as Murder at the Bijou, Teagan’s latest release is book of the month on Hugh Roberts’ blog.. follow the link in the post. This week Pip and Andy find the spirit of centuries past in an ornate bottle and are soon feeling the effects.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Huge thanks for visiting here too, Teri. Yes, I am so excited about the book of the month. Hugh is awesomely talented.
      I wasn’t able to start writing until yesterday, so I’m far behind from the get go. But it’s all about the “rah-rah!” environment. Hugs right back.

      Like

  2. Always enjoy a visit from Pip and my favorite ghostly chef, oh yes and can’t forget Andy. It’s so nice re reading, I do love these characters, they make me happy!! Book of the Month, woohoo!!! Congratulations Teagan, not even a little surprised. Have a great weekend. Totally love that song too!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Oh yes – I AM SO EXCITED…..excited to hear that Murder on the Bijou is BOOK OF THE MONTH !!! Wow. :):)
    Love the story and have always loved Casper the Friendly Ghost ……I hope you enjoy a wonderfully creative period on the back of all of this….Hummingbird hugs my friend. Janet xxxx

    Liked by 1 person

      • You jolly well should be giddy with joy about it….and you so deserve it Teagan. I say it many times, but wills ay again…you are one of the most creative beings I know. have a lovely weekend and give Crystal a cuddle form me. 🙂 xxx

        Liked by 1 person

        • Thank you thank you, dear Janet. You make me feel that “I can.”
          (Crystal had a watery eyes problem recently, but seems to be over that and doing well the past 2 days. I swear by colloidal silver for eye issues, and many other things. She’s gone to her morning nap now.) 🐱 You’re the cat’s pajamas!

          Like

  4. At last, a nice story about a ghost that made me laugh, Teagan. No ‘shivers running down my spine’ here.
    Thanks so much for answering all those questions over on my blog. It’s a real pleasure to have one of your books as my ‘book of the month’. Keep on shinning, and never allow anyone to dull your sparkle.
    Hugs to you.
    Hugh
    x

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dear Hugh, it’s me who thanks you. I am sincerely honored. I hope I managed to give entertaining answers. I will do my best to shine, even through the cloud of Mordor that has hung over this week. (I might need a foghorn…) Having Bijou chosen as your book of the month helped me keep that light on.
      So I’m even happier that you enjoyed this tidbit. Have a thriving Thursday. Shine on my friend!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much, John. I’m delighted to be featured at Hugh’s.
      If I made you LOL, my job is done. I didn’t know you when I was doing the Ghost in the Kitchen serial. Maestro was a lot of fun to write, particularly since I thought of his character via a real Renaissance chef. Somehow that made it more fun for me. It will be a while before I can book-ize that one, but maybe during the first half of next year. I really appreciate you taking time to visit. You’re the cat’s meow!

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Aha, now I am not so confused why I couldn’t comment! Congrats on the selection! I really enjoyed your tipsy tale peppered with a preponderance of peppy alliteration. 😀 That was a fun tidbit to read, and LOVE that he chose an owl clock for his new residence.xoxo

    Liked by 1 person

    • LOL, you couldn’t have enjoyed it more than I loved your comment, Kathryn! 😀 ❤ Thank you so very, very much.
      Yeah… I couldn't think of a good way to handle it. The spirit of synchronicity was not with me today… But I'm happy you took time to figure it out. Mega hugs!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Aw, thanks for visiting twice, Olga! 🙂 I think of both you and Andrea whenever I see the owl clock — both of you were fond of it. Thank you for visiting — you’ve cheered me after a truly abysmal meeting…

      Like

  6. Oh no, Teagan, I was having too much fun to be scared!!! And Hugh isn’t scary either, he’s a delight and of course he’s featuring your e-boo-k, it’s the cat’s pajamas (and so and you). The most important part, this was wonderful, you sure know how to make my day! Thank you and hope your have a marvelous NaNoWriMo (did I get that right/write?) lol 😉 I know you’ll be amazing, as always. Hope this week is treating you well.
    Mega Pip Pip Hooray!!! hugs xoxoxo

    Liked by 3 people

    • Donna, I hope your November is off to a lovely start.
      Haha! You are a wonder at turning a phrase. Heartfelt thanks for this fun, delightful comment. I really appreciate you taking a moment to visit. I am having a hard time scaling the Wednesday hump… my NaNo mojo of last week is hiding somewhere at the foot of that hump. But I hope to start on my November novel tonight and WriMo-mo-mo! (Billy Idol singing Rebel Yell in my head.)
      Heartfelt thanks for your encouraging words, my friend. Mega hugs right back. You’re the cat’s pajamas!

      Like

  7. Great ghosts! What a fun ghost story. We can’t see the ghosts that hang out in our kitchen, but we sometimes hear them. The cats can see the ghosts and they watch them. It can be really creepy when the cats are all looking at and tracking the ghosts. The ghosts are always stealing things and are probably behind various mysterious happenings. Speaking of ghosts in the kitchen, we currently have a mystery electrical outage in part of the kitchen and along a west wall of the house that I couldn’t figure out, and now the electricians can’t figure out, either. There is no doubt the ghosts are up to no good. We are pooling our ingenuity figuring out how to outsmart the ghosts and restore lights and power to the kitchen.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yikes! That sounds pos-i-lutely Twilight Zone-ish, Tim.
      It seems cats enjoy freaking out humans by staring at the invisible that way. I tried to find some “happy kitchen” stuff, but I have to shut down for my computer backup. Thoughtful *not* — they moved that to my lunchtime… Otherwise maybe an exorcist costume for Spunk… 😉
      Thanks for visiting. You’re the cat’s pajamas.

      Liked by 1 person

      • We don’t need to watch TV shows like the Twilight Zone. We live in the Twilight Zone. That’s why I can relate so well to the line “I have on foot on a banana peal the other in the Twilight Zone…” from the song “Life Sucks Then You Die” by the Fools.

        Liked by 1 person

    • I’m delighted you enjoyed it, Jan.
      The ghost is an important character, but like the other 1920s stories, Pip is central. Maestro is sort of comic relief… but there is an edge that sometimes makes you wonder if you should really trust him. 😉 The serial of which this post was a part will eventually be book-ized.
      Thank you-thank you! I’m thrilled to be in book of the month! I appreciate you visiting. You’re the berries!

      Like

  8. I really enjoyed this Teagan.. And oh if only he had been a genie lol.. But I can see lots more surprises as he keeps exiting the clock.. 🙂
    And Congratulations of Being chosen for Book of the Month over at Hughs.. Sending Hugs your way.. xxx Sue xxx

    Liked by 2 people

    • Hi Christoph, it’s great to see you! Oh yes, I’m very excited to have my work as the book of the month at Hugh’s. The Pointer Sisters haven’t stopped singing in my head yet! 😉
      Glad you enjoyed the images. Benedict does look like one pissed-off-able pope. A wonderful Wednesday to you as well. You’re the cat’s pajamas!

      Liked by 1 person

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