Brother Love 5 — A Face

Saturday, May 25, 2019

4th n Vine Sign

Image tomfoolery from Teagan

Welcome back to the crossroads.    

As you know, the popular blogger and photographer Dan Antion illustrates Brother Love.  I try to bring Dan into some of the process of creating the story.  The “things” for this chapter led me to a scene that required some knowledge I didn’t possess — dark-haired actresses of the era.  At the time Dan was visiting his brother, Bruce, and they both took up the challenge.  Read on and you’ll see what I mean.

Sometimes my life creeps into my stories, with small parallels.  I’ve been having a disfiguring allergy problem. (It’s finally a lot better, thanks.  Apparently running its dreadfully long course, just as they said.)  I guess that’s why my narrator for this story became conscious of her appearance in chapters 4 and 5.

Birdie Devovo can’t afford to dress “to the nines,” but she tries to look presentable.  She wouldn’t buy a love potion, No. 9 or otherwise.  However “nine” will come into this story a few times, now and in the future.  

Last time, the song Love Potion No. 9 sneaked into the story as I wrote.  It caused me to name a couple of the streets in Parliament, Mississippi.  I also used the song for another name (first name and surname).  Let me know if you spot it this week.

Wanted Teagan

Chris Graham’s Wanted Poster of Teagan

The reader “thing” today is from author Diana Wallace Peach at Myths of the Mirror.  Diana has been working over-time giving us monthly writing prompt images — and sharing the resulting stories on her blog. I think that’s a huge effort.  The prompts she chooses are inspiring.  I thank her for all the work she does, and for all her encouragement and support. 

At first Diana sent an ordinary thing for this story.  Then she decided that was too easy to be any fun.  What did she give in exchange?  A Taxidermied Alligator.  No really, she did.  I expected it to be quite awhile before I was able to use that, but it crawled into this chapter.  The other “things” for Chapter 5 are from Dan —  Iron and Chewing Tobacco.  

Chapter 3, A HymnAn unknown woman and a rather odd little girl stopped at the house at the crossroads asking for directions.  They were looking for Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show.  The woman said she believed Tammy could be healed of her hemophilia there.

Chapter 4, A Domino. When Birdie’s errands took her to the Post Office on Vine Street, police Sargent Lamar Poole was hanging up a new wanted poster.  Birdie thought she knew the face on the poster.  We’ll learn what resulted from that encounter.  Meanwhile Jinx is flying around, doing whatever magpies do.  Let’s take a look at things from a bird’s eye view.

It’s time to go to the crossroads.

Brother Love

5 — A Face 

Taxidermied Alligator, Iron, and Chewing Tobacco

Dans metal alligator

Dan actually made this alligator back in his schooldays!

Jinx perched atop the sign for the Alligator Motor Lodge.  He looked at the spot five hundred yards away where the railroad tracks crossed Highway 61.  It was another kind of crossroads.

Inside the picture window of the motel office was the establishment’s claim to local fame ― a taxidermied alligator.  A couple walked arm in arm from the motel office, pointing at the erstwhile beast.  They had signed in as Mr. and Mrs. John Smith, but anyone would have known the names weren’t real.

The pair laughed when they looked up to see a bird perching on the sign as if he sat on the alligator’s nose.  Jinx paid them no mind.

A Ford pulled directly up to one of the motel doors.  The blond woman at the steering wheel paused, watching the couple go to their room.  She briefly looked around the parking lot, as if judging whether the place was suitable.

Little girl in creepy garden

Rudy and Peter Skitterians at Pixabay

The woman already had a key.  A little girl got out of the passenger seat.  She was not strapped in, the way she had been before.

Jinx started to flutter down to say hello to the girl, but he stayed put.  He watched the woman.  Little ball-shaped earrings could be seen with her short hair.  Their facets glittered in the sunlight, mesmerizing the magpie.

“Come on, Tammy.  Stop dawdling,” the woman told the child.

“The room smells funny,” Tammy complained.

“Well, there wasn’t much to choose from in this podunk town.”

“That preacher said there was plenty of room for us to stay at his house,” the child countered.

“You know we can’t do that.  We need to get inside.  Get out of the car.  Now,” came the command.  “Be sure to bring the bag with your new white dress.”

“Why do I always have to wear white to services?” Tammy asked as she got the bag from the backseat.

“It’s more dramatic,” the woman answered.

A crow perched on a roof, looking down

Joe the crow in the role of Jinx the magpie, by Dan Antion

Jinx watched as she took a key that was hooked to a plastic alligator shape.  She inserted the key and opened the faded green door.

“Will he really be there?” Tammy asked.

The woman turned.  In contrast to her pale hair, her eyebrows were dark.  Her brows went up, but her eyelids lowered slightly as she gave the child a sidelong look.

“If he isn’t there, maybe we will visit that preacher at his big house.  Would you like that?” she asked in a different tone, as the green door closed behind them.

Jinx tilted his head toward the trees, listening.  Although there had not been a train, he heard the sound of something moving on the rarely used railroad spur.  The section of track stopped in a clearing on the other side of the thick stand of trees.

Then the magpie heard the distant chords of a guitar, coming from the same place.  The first time he heard the song, Sinnerman, it frightened him.  That time he flew toward the sound.

***

Antique Iron photo

Antique Iron, by Dan Antion

The Post Office door was propped open with an old-fashioned iron to let in the scant August breeze.  A soft current of air rustled the papers the policeman held.

Noticing how I stared at the wanted poster, Sargent Poole handed it to me rather than hanging it on the Post Office wall.

“Somebody you know, Miss Devovo?” he asked.

Lamar Poole’s tone was a tad too official.  I had the fleeting thought that maybe he wasn’t all that different from the other people in town after all.

However, my main concern was with the picture.  My brows knitted as I thought ― and thought.  Have you ever had the feeling that the memory was just barely out of reach, and that if you worked at it hard enough, you could pull it up from the depths of your recollections and out through your mouth?

“I could swear that I’ve seen that face,” I murmured, but shook my head.

The policeman relaxed again.  He even smiled a little and chuckled.

“A lot of people think she looks like Ava Gardner,” he commented.  “Maybe that’s what made her swap petty theft for grand larceny.  An attractive woman like that could talk a man out of his life’s savings.”

Ava Gardner in The Killers, 1946

Ava Gardner in The Killers, 1946 (image courtesy Dan & Bruce Antion)

The pictured woman had dark hair down to her shoulders.  After Sargent Poole mentioned it, I could see that she did bear a strong resemblance to the movie star, Ava Gardner.

Although I was sure I had never met anyone who looked like a sultry dark-haired screen vixen, I couldn’t get over the feeling that I knew the face from somewhere.

“Ruth Leiber,” I read the name on the poster.  “May be traveling with―”

Abruptly, the policeman took the poster from me as he turned.  Poole strode out the door in a huff. 

I only glimpsed it, but a man had spat a long stream of disgusting brown onto the sidewalk.

Chewing tobacco,” I muttered and wrinkled my nose.

In a few strides Poole caught up with a man. 

“Where’s your self-respect?” Sargent Poole demanded and threatened to write the perpetrator a ticket if it happened again.

Chewing tobacco tin, by Dan Antion

Chewing tobacco tin, by Dan Antion

Meanwhile, the postal clerk had worked through his line of customers.

“Can I help you ma’am?” he called to me.

Back to my own business, I quickly forgot about the wanted poster.  Those thoughts were replaced by thirst.  There was a vending machine across the street.  I decided to splurge and buy myself a Doctor Pepper.

As I left the Post Office, I paused by the beauty parlor next door.  The shop window had a picture of a fashionable woman against an Italian backdrop.  Frowning, I turned away without going closer.

The last time I asked to get my hair done there, they told me there wasn’t an opening available for two months.  Yet as I was leaving that day, a woman walked in and was waited on immediately.

With a sigh, I told myself my hair was too curly to ever wear a European bouffant like Sophia Loren.  All they had ever managed to do with my hair was the poodle cut, favored by Lucille Ball, I thought with dissatisfaction.

A paper blew against my Keds.  I bent to pick it up.  It was one of those mimeographed flyers for Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show.  It made me think of the unknown presence in my house, and the smudge on my PanAm calendar.

Dr Pepper bottle, by Dan Antion

Dr Pepper bottle, by Dan Antion

I felt a chill.  Although in the heat and humidity of an August day, that didn’t last long.  I took a nickel from my change purse and went across the street toward the drink machine.

“Miss Bird Lady!” a child’s voice called.

I turned to see Tammy dart out of the beauty parlor and into the street.

The breaks of an oncoming car screeched.

End Chapter 5.

***

Real World Notes

Magpie Trivia.  Magpies can hear the sound of grubs and worms under the ground.  With that in mind, I figured Jinx could easily hear a guitar on the other side of some trees.

1950s Hair Styles.  Hair trends for young adults broke free of the more conservative coiffures of the World War II Era.  Names for the styles ranged from whimsical to glamorous, including European bouffant, the duck tail, the pixie, the pompadour, the poodle cut, as well as the simply named short and curly. 

***

Thank you kindly for reading Brother Love!  If you want to participate by leaving a “thing” to be included in a future episode, please make a comment.  Remember this is a mysterious story, set in rural Mississippi of the late 1950s to early 1960s.   

I’ll meet you at the crossroads again next Saturday!  Hugs on the wing.

***

Universal link to my Amazon Author Page

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

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This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental.

Copyright ©  2019 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.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

Jazz Age Wednesday — Pip & Artie, Epilogue

Wednesday, May 22, 2019 

Fone_Bone

Fone Bone for Get Caught Reading

It’s still May and #GetCaughtReading Month!  Chris Graham, the Story Reading Ape, and I got together to support this initiative that promotes the fun of reading for all ages.

I meant our short story last week to be a single episode.  However, with an ongoing (and itchy) allergy problem distracting me, I’m having trouble getting my head into the Pip-verse so that I can finish preparing A Ghost in the Kitchen for launch.  So, I hoped writing a little more on this story would help. 

Artie, the genius time traveling chimpanzee is back today.  If you missed Pip and Artie Aghast at a Ghost, click the link.   I hope you Get Caught Reading this!  All right then, let’s get a wiggle on and head to the Jazz Age!

Pip and Artie — Aghast at a Ghost

Part 2 Epilogue

Artie sketch thinking color steampunk

Artie, courtesy of Chris Graham

Nothing ever kept my grandmother down for long.  Arty looked brooksy in his time-travel uniform.  That and his kind eyes won Granny Phanny over pretty quick.  Although she persisted in a profound denial about the prankish poltergeist.

“A bird got in the kitchen,” she insisted.  “I chased it outside with my broom, but I slipped and hit my head when I fell. What?  I beg your pardon!  Why of all the gall, Paisley.  I have never swooned in all my days.”

Phanny Irene Peabody was determined to introduce Artie to southern cooking.  Granny was so caught up in showing off that she barely let me help her, suspending my cooking lessons for the day. 

She limited the meat in her dishes when Artie admitted that it wasn’t his favorite thing.  However, Granny laid out a mouthwatering spread with cornbread-dressing, collard greens, light-as-air biscuits, chicken and dumplings (easy on the chicken), mashed potatoes, and some fried chicken for Andy and me.

Even though it didn’t fit with the rest of the meal, she made some hushpuppies.  You see, Artie had asked about them, wanting to know if they really included puppies.  Andy and I were too surprised to completely hide our laughter.  Granny, however, was downright professorial as she explained that hushpuppies were only bread, with no meat of any sort.

When Granny had us all move to the parlor for dessert, Andy and I saw the ghost sneak back into the kitchen, but we kept our lips buttoned.  I knew the spirit wouldn’t beat it for long.

1920s Kitchen Bouguet ad

Then my grandmother ensured future visits from Artie by producing one of his favorite desserts – a Mississippi mud pie.

When he laid eyes on the chocolaty confection, Artie couldn’t help showing a big toothy grin.  Granny’s smile faded for a second when she saw the length of his teeth, but a look at the genius ape’s delighted eyes put her at ease.

Artie offered Granny Phanny one quick time travel adventure.  At first, she protested that it was too great a gift.  Yet an imploring gaze from Artie caused her to relent.  However, Granny swore him to secrecy about where and when she wanted to go.

Phanny Irene Peabody hopped onto the back of the motorcycle-looking time machine.  She moved as if she was an old hand with motorcycles.  Then I remembered the time she and Dr. Vincent Vale (and everybody else I knew in Savannah) went looking for me on his vintage vehicle.

The traveling duo returned about twenty seconds after they left.  Granny was misty eyed.  She gave Artie a tight hug as he bade us farewell.

The end.

Heartfelt thanks to Chris Graham for being such a willing participant in these shenanigans.  Our Story Reading Ape is a marvelous storyteller.  If you want to get caught reading another treat, check out his mom’s book.

Chris Graham (for Agnes Mae Graham)

My Vibrating Vertabrae cover

Don’t forget my mysterious new serial, Brother Love.  Chapter 5 will go live on Saturday. 

I’ll see you at the crossroads! 

***

Universal link to my Amazon Author Page

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

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

Amazon UK

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USA:  Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I

Amazon UK

USA:  Atonement in Bloom

Amazon UK

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USA:  The Glowing Pigs, Snort Stories of Atonement, Tennessee

Amazon UK

Atonement Video Cover copy

USA:  Atonement, Tennessee

(E-book still on sale at 99¢ )

Amazon UK

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental.

Copyright ©  2019 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene and Christopher Graham

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.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

Do No Harm — Box Set Launch

Tuesday, May 21, 2019

It’s Get Caught Reading Month, and look what you’ve caught me reading!

card christoph

I’m honored to promote a new collection of medical thrillers. You may have seen it making the rounds. 

This boxed set includes a novel from one of the first followers of this blog — Christoph Fischer.  You couldn’t meet a more generous person than Christoph.  He is also my “birthday sibling.”  So how could I resist jumping on this bandwagon?

DO NO HARM is an extraordinary, limited collection of medical thrillers written by USA Today, Wall Street Journal and Amazon best-selling authors. 

You can order it now for .99!

Do you crave reading books with nail-biting suspense, twisted plots and great characters who get caught up in whirlwinds of crime, deception and lies? Do you love sitting on the edge of your seat, wondering who will survive…and who won’t?

background 1 vv.

From the mountains of West Virginia, to acute care hospitals, the battlefields of the Middle East and the hallowed halls of our educational system, join us for these incredible stories of healthcare gone wrong.

If you like Robin Cook, David Baldacci and Patricia Cornwell, this collection is for you! Do No Harm is a binge-readers dream – 14 medical thriller books in one! And you can only get this collection of books from this group of authors here!

Grab your copy today and find a comfortable chair!

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/books/1131032041
 https://www.kobo.com/us/en/ebook/do-no-harm-21
 https://itunes.apple.com/us/book/id1457771385

No Harm puppy
So there you have it. That’s a huge collection — a great way to discover new authors!  It’s still Get Caught Reading month — let us catch you reading one of these. 
Click over to Christoph’s blog and say hello too.  Hugs!
 

Brother Love 4 — A Domino

Saturday, May 18, 2019

Note:  Last week I mentioned Dan was working on his own post about his part of the inspiration for the Doug Armstrong character.  That is Dan’s Saturday post this week at his blog, No Facilities.

Various names on different colored cards in fancy text

Chuttersnap at Unsplash

Welcome to my sanctuary at the crossroads.  Relax and sit for awhile.  It makes no difference what your name may be.  Although there is oh so much in a name. 

I tend to obsess about character names.  In stories with a real world setting (even if they are also fantasy) I try to add authenticity through the names of some characters.  With Atonement, Tennessee and Atonement in Bloom, I consulted a (public) government database that will show the most popular names, for a state, in a given year. 

Last time in A Hymn, we met two new characters, a woman and a little girl.  I had to give the girl a first name.  To my those ever so handy databases I went.  I chose four names from the 100 most popular names in Mississippi in 1960.  (Since I haven’t established an exact year for the story, that’s smack in the middle of my range of when the story might take place.)

Then I sent my top choices to Dan Antion and asked if he’d mind choosing the name.  He chose from Dorothy, Shirley, Sandra (Sandy), and Tammy.  As you know, he picked Tammy. 

One of Dan’s “things” for Chapter 4 is the number nine.  This song came into the story.  It also inspired a couple of street names.

For Chapter 4, the “things” from Dan are Round Domino and Nine (the number).  The third thing is from V. M. Sang, Faberge egg.  She had not left a comment before my “call for things,” but that’s perfectly fine.

This time I apologize and request your patience.  I was barely able to get this chapter posted in time.  It’s raw.  You’ll undoubtedly see a lot of mistakes, but at least I managed to get it here.

It’s time to go to the crossroads.

Chapter 2.  Doug Armstrong stopped at Birdie Devovo’s house at the crossroads moments after the lights went out.  He said he saw someone moving around on the porch.  Birdie certainly thought someone was inside.   Yet, was it odd that Doug should be there at that specific moment?  Was it random chance?  Or did it happen by design?  If so, then whose design?

Chapter 3.  An unknown woman and a rather odd little girl stopped at the house at the crossroads asking for directions.  They were looking for Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show.  The woman said she believed Tammy could be healed of her hemophilia there. 

Brother Love

4 — A Domino

Round Domino, Nine, and Faberge Egg

Round Dominoes, by Dan Antion

Round Dominoes, by Dan Antion

Even after I could no longer see or hear the Ford, I stood there, pondering the strangeness of the child.

Jinx fluttered down near my feet.  He started pecking at something amid the gravels of the drive.  I noticed a small black disk.  With his beak, he tossed it into the air.

Sometimes when the magpie found bottle caps, he liked me to throw them for him to find.  However, that was no metal cap.

I bent down for a closer look.  A black disk with white dots.  It was right beside where the woman had stopped her car.

While she had called the child by her name, Tammy, the woman had not given her own name.  She was awfully nervous.  I guessed that getting lost made her too flustered to think of social niceties.  Although I didn’t feel she had been rude.

Jinx pecked at the disk again.  I picked it up to investigate before he could fly off with it.

Magpie on ground listening_PicturesofScotland Pixaby

Magpie, Pixabay

“Oh,” I felt so foolish that I said it aloud.

I had never seen a round domino.  The game behind the regular kind mystified me.  For the longest, I didn’t even know there was a game.  Dominoes were just something you stood up to watch each one knock down the next.  I wondered what you were supposed to do with round ones.

Jinx acted like he wanted it back.

“I know you found it, Jinx,” I told the bird.  “It must belong to that strange little girl.  If I see them again, I’ll give it to her.”

The magpie made a series of noises then started singing one of his favorites.  He usually just repeated the simple chorus over and over again, but that time he sang most of a verse.

“When I kissed a cop on Thirty-fourth and Vine.  Broke little bottle number nine,” he sang, getting most of the words.

“That’s a much better song than what you sang yesterday.  Come on back to the house and I’ll give you another strawberry.”

That got his attention.  For the next half hour, the magpie serenaded me with Love Potion Number Nine.

***

Church reflected in river Dan Antion

Church reflected in the river, by Dan Antion

The song wouldn’t leave my head.  I was still humming it the next morning when I got dressed to do errands.

I hated going into town.  It didn’t matter whether people were uptown or down, or which side of the tracks, rich or poor, they…  Well, let’s just say they didn’t approve of me.  It’s hard to say which was worse, the spiteful remarks, or the cold, aloof behavior.

Granted, my mother had given them enough fuel for gossip to last several generations.  They speculated about my parentage and then about whether I was legitimate.  They cast doubt on my race, and even my sanity ― all knowing I could hear them.

Other comments spoken in hushed, sometimes fearful tones made me wonder if people really did think I was some sort of devil, just because I lived at the crossroads on the outside of town.

People could be so foolish.  As if there weren’t crossroads all over town.  As if there wasn’t a crossroad anywhere two roads met, I thought.

Regardless, I had things to do that wouldn’t do themselves.  So, I got up and pulled my brown ringlet curls into a ponytail and got dressed.

1948 Nash Rambler-a1-Rex Gray-2-

Birdie’s old 1948 Nash Rambler, by Rex Gray

Women in cities might have started wearing slim cigarette or capri pants out in public, but that hadn’t become acceptable in Parliament, Mississippi.  I already attracted enough frowns and gossip, just from my mother’s reputation, so I didn’t wear those out in public.

I tried to banish the thoughts as I put on a yellow gingham, shirt-dress.  It had a little bow at the neck from the same check fabric.  Then I tied on my blue denim Keds.  New white laces kept the wear and tear from being as noticeable.  Nobody would know the soles were worn slick.

When I drove the old Nash Rambler wagon into Parliament, I turned onto Fourth Street.  That took me past the First Methodist Church.

I noticed several cars in the parking lot.  Among them was a late model Ford.  When I saw a bleached blond head, I knew it was the car from the evening before.

Then I gave myself a mental kick for the uncharitable sound of the word.  Describing a woman’s hair as bleached was insulting, even if that was obviously the case.  I never wanted to treat others the way I was treated.

I saw Tammy getting into the car.  The woman stood near the vehicle, talking to the preacher and some other people.  One of them handed her an envelope.

1950s Hat Purse Gloves ad

Pattern ad circa 1950

For a moment I considered stopping.  I was sure the domino must belong to Tammy so I had put it in my pocketbook just in case I saw them again.  What good was a game with a missing piece?

As the woman put the packet into her white handbag, I realized it contained cash.  She had mentioned Tammy’s medical bills taking all their money.  It was not unusual for families with a sickly child to go to churches in their area for donations.

But they aren’t from around here, I thought.  She must be in terrible need to ask for help outside their own community.  It would embarrass them if they knew I saw.

So, I continued on my way.  I stayed on Fourth Street to stop at the bakery.  A loaf of freshly baked bread was my reward for going into town.  Then I headed to the Post Office on Vine Street.

At the corner I noticed they had put up a street sign for the intersection of Fourth and Vine.  The visual of the sign made me think of Love Potion Number Nine again.  Parliament, Mississippi was nowhere near big enough to have a 34th Street, as in the song.  However, Fourth and Vine was close enough to make me chuckle.

The Post Office was one of the prettiest buildings in Parliament.  It was also one of the oldest.  I liked the cooling marble floors and arched doorways.

"The Hub" at Iowa State University was a post office until 1963. Dan Antion

“The Hub” at Iowa State University was a post office until 1963. Dan Antion

Inside, a policeman removed a picture from the “most wanted” wall.  When he looked up I saw it was Lamar Poole.  He wasn’t originally from Mississippi, but he had been with our police force for many years.

The lawmen weren’t as bad as most of the rest of the people.  Maybe it was because they had seen some truly bad people.  Anyhow I felt comfortable enough to say hello.

“Caught one!” I said in a go-team sort of way.

“Unfortunately, there’s always at least one more to replace the ones that get caught,” Sargent Poole replied in a friendly voice.

He held out a newspaper with an article about “grand larceny” and a valuable Faberge egg.

“Are those things really worth that much?” I exclaimed.

Lamar’s expression showed skepticism, but he nodded.  Fancy baubles were apparently not to his taste.

My mouth dropped open when he showed me the wanted-picture of the criminal.

I knew that face.

End Chapter 4.

***

Thank you kindly for reading Brother Love!  If you want to participate by leaving a “thing” to be included in a future episode, please make a comment.  Remember this is a mysterious story, set in rural Mississippi of the late 1950s to early 1960s. 

I’ll meet you at the crossroads again next Saturday!  Hugs on the wing.

***

Universal link to my Amazon Author Page

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

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

Amazon UK

Bijou front only 2

USA:  Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I

Amazon UK

USA:  Atonement in Bloom

Amazon UK

Pigs collection cover banner

USA:  The Glowing Pigs, Snort Stories of Atonement, Tennessee

Amazon UK

Atonement Video Cover copy

USA:  Atonement, Tennessee

(E-book still on sale at 99¢ )

Amazon UK

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental.

Copyright ©  2019 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.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

An Extra (Special) Story — Trina Woke from a Dream

May 16, 2019  

Usually I only post twice a week, but this is a special occasion.  Recently, Rob Goldstein and I were sending emails back and forth, basically goofing around.  I sent him an image by artist Michael Whelan and and added a whimsical line.  And then another, and another.  Suddenly Rob said, “Let’s make this into a story.” 

One of the images I showed Rob is called Integral Trees.  You can see it by clicking this link to Mr. Whelan’s work.  The other paintings were Rimrunner (2011) and Erosion (1999).  You can search the website with those names to view them.

Rob created a special image for our story.  Since it began with his character, Trina, the story is in what I call his poetic format. 

Trina Woke from a Dream

Trina and the Moths-4

Trina with Madison and moths, by Rob Goldstein

The Shadow Boy was on his way to visit while she languished above
a labyrinth of verdant shrubs.

He saw a blond child levitating outside the window of the monorail. 

Shadow Boy was intrigued.

Was the blond child looking for his shadow?  Could he catch it with his arrow?

The Shadow Boy examined the boy for clues.

The “boy” had pixie ears and breasts.

This wasn’t his boy.

Trina waved at the Shadow Boy and motioned for him to join her.
The boy hesitated. Trina wondered why.  Perhaps because the sun was going down.

The Shadow Boy shouldn’t be afraid of the dark.  Besides there’s a streetlight. 

Trina close

Trina looked so lovely, I wanted you to see this close up of her.

She decided it made no difference.  She still had Madison, but wait, where had
Madison got to?

She was chasing a few moths drawn to streetlight.

Madison chasing moths? This was out of character.

“What’s wrong with you?” asked Trina.

“Nothing!” Madison scowled.

“You’re chasing moths.”

“They’re chasing me.  Look at these holes!”

It was true; Madison was full of holes.

The end.

***

Please visit Rob and his post of this story.  (Like many other bloggers, we are having issues with the “reblog button.”)  Trina Woke from a Dream.

Universal link to my Amazon Author Page

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

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USA:  Atonement in Bloom

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USA:  Atonement, Tennessee

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Amazon UK

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental.

Copyright ©  2019 by Rob Goldstein and Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene

Images copyright ©  2019 by Rob Goldstein

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.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

Jazz Age Wednesday — Pip & Artie, Aghast at a Ghost

Wednesday, May 15, 2019 

Author Neil Gaiman for Get Caught Reading

Author Neil Gaiman for Get Caught Reading

May is #GetCaughtReading Month!  Chris Graham, the Story Reading Ape himself, and I are together again to support this initiative that promotes the fun of reading for all ages.

Chris and I have collaborated on several short stories that include his character, a genius ape named Artie and my first flapper, Pip.  It all started with Time Travel Esc-Ape.  Then there was Pip in the Corn Maze, followed by the three-part Pip and Artie Meet Again.

I hope you Get Caught Reading our new story!  It is set during the time-line of my upcoming novel A Ghost in the Kitchen.  All right then, let’s get a wiggle on and head to the Jazz Age!

Pip and Artie — Aghast at a Ghost

Fearful man and woman circa 1926

Ghost Stories Magazine circa 1926

“Hello,” I answered the telephone.  “Andy, tha―”

“Paisley Idelle Peabody, where are your manners.  That’s no proper way to answer the telephone.  Give me that,” Granny Phanny demanded as she took the receiver away from me.

“TREmont 3332, Peabody residence,” my grandmother spoke into the receiver as I turned my head so she wouldn’t see me roll my eyes.  “Why yes Andy, you may.  One moment please.  Paisley, Andy is calling for you.”

Granny gave me a stern look and handed me the card she kept beside the telephone.  It was titled The Telephone Pledge

“I believe in the Golden Rule and will try to be as Courteous and Considerate over the Telephone as if Face to Face.”

It continued with such advise as telephone manners are as important for voice-to-voice courtesy, as face-to-face politeness.  Instructions to speak directly into the mouthpiece with lips a half inch away, and keep mustache out of opening were included.

I got caught reading it aloud to my pal Andy.  It wasn’t the reading that annoyed Granny, but my laughter.

Blue Lucille Ball Stage Door Trailer

Young Lucille Ball as Pip

“You’d best take that seriously or they might discontinue our service,” she warned.

“Oh Granny!  They wouldn’t really do that,” I defended as she walked away with her best bluenose attitude.

My grandmother had distracted me to the extent that I forgot to put the finishing touches on my glad rags before Andy came to pick me up in his old jalopy.  I had a special pendant with a beautiful labradorite crystal that I meant to show him.  I had recently told him the story behind that gem and he was keen to see it in person.

Andy and I weren’t gone long before we went back for the pendant.  However, during that short time a lot happened.  I only wish I could have seen it firsthand.

You see, my friend Aristotle, also known as Artie, dropped in at Granny’s cottage.  That wouldn’t have mattered if Artie was an ordinary guy.  Unfortunately for my grandmother’s state of mind, Artie was a time traveler.  Not only that, he was an ape!  He was very polite, and a genius to boot, but an ape nonetheless.  He was also the one who gave me the labradorite pendant. 

This is how Artie described what transpired.

***

Artie sketch thinking color steampunk

Artie, courtesy of Chris Graham

When she went into town with Andy, Pip carelessly left the labradorite crystal pendant laying out on her dressing table, instead of in her jewelry box.  That wouldn’t have mattered with an ordinary necklace, but the pendant acted as a transponder which allowed Artie to find Pip when he went back in time.

As fate would have it, Granny found the labradorite crystal while tidying up.

She was strangely drawn to the pendant.  Phanny Irene Peabody picked up the crystal and held it, soaking in its gentle glowing warmth.

A loud “pots and pans” type of crash startled her.  The commotion was followed by a shouted string of words that sounded oddly foreign, but were obviously from someone who needed their mouth washed out with soap.

Granny, still gripping the pendant, hurried angrily towards her kitchen.

Meanwhile, as Granny ran toward the ruckus in her kitchen, Aristotle, the genius ape was summoned to his time machine by the labradorite crystal that Granny Phanny had unknowingly activated.

The pendant had sent a distress call.  So, he dropped what he was doing, hastily donned his time travelling gear and activated his portable time machine motorcycle.

Artie Portable Time Machine cycle

Artie’s portable time machine, image courtesy Chris Graham

Artie arrived in Savannah, Georgia of the Roaring Twenties.

Artie took off his helmet and gave a huge pointy fanged grin of satisfaction.  He was excited at the prospect of seeing his friend Pip again, but of course he was also worried because of the distress signal.

The labradorite crystal pendant locator had worked a treat, bringing him just outside the cottage where Pip lived with her grandmother.

The link between pendant and locator had brought him within 30 seconds of the time when the pendant had sent the alarm.

As Artie hurried over to the cottage, the kitchen door burst open and what at first glance appeared to be a rotund man in Renaissance garb rushed out, ducking and weaving in an attempt to avoid the pots and pans flying behind him.

Artie bounded over and brought down what he presumed was an intruder in Pip’s home.

Granny appeared at the kitchen door and clapped her hands, applauding Artie’s heroics.

“Why thank you so very much!  That strange looking man was in my kitchen.  Bring him over here, so I can give him a piece of my mind.”

Dangling the figure by the scruff of his neck, Artie obliged.

Granny was so engrossed in seeing who had spilled her kitchenware, she didn’t notice that Artie wasn’t a man, until she looked up to thank him again.

Artie was careful not to grin, it showed his fangs too much for many humans and frightened them, so he gave a broad, but closed-lip smile instead.

Granny sank down to the ground in a fit of the vapors.

As she recovered, responding to the cool compress on her forehead and the muttered entreaties from two male voices, Granny slowly opened her eyes – and wished she hadn’t.

The man in the clothes of a Renaissance Era chef winked at her flirtatiously.  Then with the sound of a fizzing pop, he disappeared into thin air! 

The huge leather clad ape was still there. 

Granny swooned again.

The end.

Heartfelt thanks to Chris Graham for being such a willing participant in these shenanigans.  Our Story Reading Ape is a marvelous storyteller.  If you want to get caught reading another treat, check out his mom’s book.

Chris Graham (for Agnes Mae Graham)

My Vibrating Vertabrae cover

Don’t forget my mysterious new serial, Brother Love.  Chapter 4 will go live on Saturday. 

I’ll see you at the crossroads! 

***

Universal link to my Amazon Author Page

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

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

Amazon UK

Bijou front only 2

USA:  Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I

Amazon UK

USA:  Atonement in Bloom

Amazon UK

Pigs collection cover banner

USA:  The Glowing Pigs, Snort Stories of Atonement, Tennessee

Amazon UK

Atonement Video Cover copy

USA:  Atonement, Tennessee

(E-book still on sale at 99¢ )

Amazon UK

This is a work of fiction.  Characters, names, places, and incidents are either the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously, and any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, business establishments, locales, or events is entirely coincidental.

Copyright ©  2019 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene and Christopher Graham

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.

All images are either the property of the author or provided by free sources, unless stated otherwise.

 

Brother Love 3 — A Hymn

I had a technical problem when I posted last night. Please click through to Chapter 3 if you missed it. I will see you at the crossroads.

Teagan's Books

Saturday, May 11, 2019

Brother Love promo imageBrother Love composite by Teagan R. Geneviene

Welcome back to the crossroads everyone!   

 I should probably begin with a disclaimer.  This story is not about religion, nor is it a social commentary — that’s just part of the setting.  I also want you to understand that I approach this aspect of the story carefully.  While the story includes ways that I knew well and was involved in as a child, as an adult I acquired my own unique spirituality. 

That said, last time in A Shadow, now you learned some of the backstory for the Doug Armstrong character.  Today I wanted to tell you how his character came to be. 

You already know that Dan Antion provides photos to inspire me and illustrate this story —  and that he gives me two of the “three things” that drive each episode of this…

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