The Delta Pearl 63 — Whistle

Saturday, February 6, 2021

But first, for those who aren’t here on Wednesdays…

Announcing

Dead of Winter: Journey 2, Penllyn

Dead of Winter: Journey 2, Penllyn. Cover by Teagan R. Geneviene
Dead of Winter: Journey 2, Penllyn Cover by Teagan R. Geneviene

At the beginning of 2021, I started monthly, serialized novelettes of an epic fantasy, “Dead of Winter.”  Journey 1, Forlorn Peak was released then.  This week I published, Journey 2, Penllyn.  For that announcement click here. (Description and other information is included in that post.)

Now to the free serial that you were looking for, my chuckaboos!  I’m here with an all new episode of the #steampunk riverboat serial, The Delta Pearl.

Whenever possible, I let a “random reader thing” add to the story.  Today I used one from Olga Núñez Miret, whistle.

For past episodes, either click the back arrow at the bottom of the post, or click on the Delta Pearl category button on the right side of the page.  Now let’s get right to it.

All aboard!

The Delta Pearl

Chapter 63 — Whistle

Pixabay
Pixabay

Cool fingers touched my arm.  I turned to face a hideous face with a long snout and bulging eyes.  I drew breath to scream.

A muffled giggle stopped my wail.  I recognized the finely made mauve colored gown that stood below the horrible face.

“Eliza!  You startled me.  How did you get that breathing apparatus?” I asked Mrs. Needleman about the mask strapped around her head.  “Oh, never mind.  I don’t want to know which porter you probably cajoled into giving it to you.”

All the passengers were supposed to drink Agate’s tea, and breathe the herbal vapors that were piped throughout the Delta Pearl.  The combination would not only make them sleep through the time shifts, but also make them forget the day or two surrounding those events.

I should have known that my friend would find a way to keep her memories.  Eliza was not just sophisticated — she was downright brilliant.

“The herbal gas wasn’t pumped into this room,” I told Eliza.  “You can take off that mask.  The Delta Pearl has finished… transitioning or whatever I should call it.  Things feel normal now, but I don’t really know if we’ve returned home.”

Eliza gave her head a sharp shake.  I realized that an odd whistle sound was in my head, and made the same motion.

“Shrill, whistling sound?” I muttered in question, and she frowned and nodded.  “It’s an after-effect of what the Delta Pearl just did.”

“I knew something was afoot, my chuckaboo,” she began.  “It felt more like we were in a storm at sea than on a gentle river cruise.  I didn’t want to leave Randall.  The tea sent my husband straight to slumber land.  It made me sleepy, but I do have a rather strong constitution.  When I saw an overburdened porter carrying several of these breathing apparatuses, I distracted him enough to nip one of them.”

Eliza disentangled the mask from her now disheveled Gibson Girl hairdo.  She hung it from her arm like a purse.  She gave a curious look around at the dazed crew members, before continuing.

“The Librarian saw me when I left our cabin to investigate.  Opal dragged me to the boiler room.  The woman isn’t half as frail as she looks, I can tell you that!  She was going on and on about her peridot and a key.  Anyhow, she insisted that I stay in there and she sat me down by a strange array of tuning forks.  She said I would be safe as long as I was near them,” Eliza Needleman described the encounter in a mystified tone.

Altered Spider jewelry pin Starbright Pixabay
Pixabay image, tomfoolery by Teagan

“Ah!  That would be why the shift didn’t knock you onto your bustle.  Yes.  I can’t go into detail, but the tuning forks are unique to the Delta Pearl… they’re part of her.  They offer a degree of protection and added power to the riverboat.  Activating them with the key makes them even more powerful.  However, they are dangerous when they’re active that way.  The key is only used in emergencies,” I tried to explain.  “And for the bonding.  Ugh!  I shouldn’t have told you that much!  I’ll just say that they are difficult to control when the key is inserted.  Blue John was the best at using them, but he’s…  Eliza, please.  You are sworn to secrecy about all this.”

“Of course, darling.  You can rely on my discretion.  Oh, by the by…  Your purple spider was in my suite.  For a moment I thought she was just bubbling around.  But she started having a clockwork fit, dancing and tapping.  Then I saw that she was having a one-spider collie shangle on top of my music box.  I knew she must be trying to tell me something, but I had no idea what.  When she ran off, I thought she had gone to you.  Maybe you can get her to explain herself.”

I looked toward the etched glass doors of the Chandelier Deck and heaved a sigh, thinking about Amethyst and the others.

Cal, the clockwork horse Victor made for me, cantered to the doors again.  He walked into them repeatedly, trying to follow the other clockworks.  A woozy Victor stumbled after the horse to retrieve him.

Sunlight, which had streamed through the doors a moment before, abruptly dimmed.  I spotted the sooty cloud where Onyx and the other clockworks had flown.

“Whatever Amethyst was trying to tell you we may never know.  She’s gone,” I murmured.

***

End Chapter 63

***

How could the clockwork creatures, particularly Amethyst, just abandon the Delta Pearl?  And that ugly brown cloud again… 

Featured Book Cover

Each week I’ll feature a Designed & Ready book cover.  I’m offering the service of pre-designed book covers or promotional images if preferred.  Here’s this week’s featured design.  Click here to see my entire portfolioPricing information is also included there. 

Here’s one example.  This week I added a few more covers. 

Group I. Vintage Valentine Woman
Group I. Vintage Valentine Woman

***

This post turned into a bit of a hodgepodge.  Thanks for visiting.  I’d love to hear from you in a comment.  Although, remember that this is my sanctuary — so keep it friendly.

Until next time, my chuckaboos!

.

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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 © 2016 and 2021 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.

 


69 thoughts on “The Delta Pearl 63 — Whistle

  1. There is something special about Eliza Needleman. I see a bit of you in her, Teagan. 🙂 Another awesome segment, but I am still so worried about all of The Delta Pearl’s staff. Some are still missing. I look forward to the next installment and hope the clockwork creatures make it back safely!

    Like

  2. Oh dear! What happened to Amethyst and the other clockworks?
    I’ll be glad to get to the bottom of the sooty cloud…. or maybe I should say the top of it.
    Are Eliza & Émeraude going to use the key?

    Teagan, adore the book cover you’ve shown here today!
    Hugaboos!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Sounds the story will going into a much more mysterious part as we had before. Very amazing feeling the upcoming tension, Teagan! The whistle i think was integrated in a famous way. At first i thought how you will make this happen. Thank you for another great episode, Teagan! Enjoy your weekend! Michael

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks very much, Michael. I’m sure Olga was thinking of the old fashioned steam whistles. Like the one in this Youtube video.

      However, when I started looking through my list or reader things, that “after effect” idea popped into my head. I’m glad you liked it.
      Thanks for reading and commenting, A wonderful weekend to you as well, my chuckaboo!

      Like

  4. I’m so curious where they are and what that cloud is! Looking forward to reading the second journey, I’m almost done with the book I’m reading, and it’s next:)

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Teagan, I do not know what will happen with Amethyst and her pals, along with Blue John, but I hope that somehow they figure into a positive ending. As for Eliza, I think she will be Em’s lifelong friend and a keeper of secrets because I think she’s just that cool. Or am I wrong? I guess the answer are yet to come…
    Hugs and purrs on the fur from moi and the sleeping cat. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hugs back to you and Gibbs. Crystal’s routine this winter has been to sit, mostly blocking me from the keyboard while try to do morning blog work. LOL. She pretends it’s cuddling, but it’s really jealousy of the computer.
      Ah, Mary J — most questions here are yet to be answered. But I can give you a hint. I don’t expect anyone to remember the subtle details over such a long voyage, but here’s a link if you want it.
      https://teagansbooks.com/2020/11/07/the-delta-pearl-54-flash/
      Thanks for reading and commenting. Stay safe and warm, my chuckaboo!

      Like

  6. I’m curious about where the Delta Pearl “returned ” to. And that sooty cloud seems hard to shake! Another fun episode and book cover. And Congrats on Journey 2. I can’t wait to get started on it. 🙂 Happy Weekend, my friend.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I’m happy Eliza has a friend in you, Jill. I have fun making Victor blush, and Agate’s Scottish phrases make her entertaining for me to write. But Eliza is probably the most fun to write, so I’m glad you enjoy that. Heartfelt thanks for catching up. Stay happy and sassy, my chuckaboo.

      Liked by 1 person

  7. Great chapter. I’m still sticking to my theory that the clockwork critters are the key to saving Blue John. I love Eliza–a true friend and heroine. Hope I can contain my curiosity for an entire week. Did we ever tell you that you are scamp for keeping us on tenterhooks week after week? Hugs meandering your way.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. So happy to hear from Eliza again! I just love her. She is truly a woman ahead of her time. I believe the clockwork creatures may be in danger from the brown cloud, but they have banded together and will be a formidable force.

    I would love a cup of Agate’s herbal tea…..just to forget 2020, Trump and some of this year!!
    Ginger

    Think positive. Test negative.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hi Ginger. I agree that a selective memory loss potion would be a treat.
      Ah, there’s the question though… The clockworks banded together — but didn’t include Cal. Why?
      What is their purpose in leaving the riverboat and apparently going into that nefarious cloud? 😀
      Stay safe and warm, my chuckaboo!

      Like

  9. After all you’ve given us this week, Teagan, how could we not be friendly. Journey 2 and a new episode of The Delta Pearl. Perfection. This is the perfect way to start the weekend 🙂

    I’m worried about the clockwork creatures, especially Amethyst. I don’t know why but I’ve developed a special fondness for her.

    I loved the description of Eliza after she took off the gas mask. “…her now disheveled Gibson Girl hairdo.” She’s such a character. I get the impression she isn’t worried at all about her appearance.

    I hope they all get their bearings and figure out what’s going on with that cloud. In the meantime, I hope you have a wonderful weekend.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. I really do appreciate this specific feedback, Dan. I think you are right about Eliza not worrying about her appearance. She’s the kind of woman who manages to look well put together without putting any effort into it. (I should probably back up and add that near the beginning. Editorial note to self.)
      Kudos on your terrific post this morning.
      Stay safe and warm, my chuckaboo!

      Liked by 1 person

      1. There are women who are like that. I had several aunts (and cousins old enough that I grew up calling them Aunt so-and-so out of respect. One of my father’s sisters wouldn’t step out of her room until she was made up perfectly. Another, my favorite Aunt (Adele) could roll out of bed and step into action without giving a thought to her appearance, and yet Adele always looked right with the world.

        I’m heading out to clean and adjust the snow blower for more snow that is on the way.

        Liked by 1 person

          1. We lived very close to many relatives. Our next door neighbors were my grandmother and one aunt on one side and my Aunt Adele on the other. I spent as much time in their houses as I did ours.

            It’s funny, as long as we get enough snow to justify using the machine, I’m OK. It’s the 1½” to 2″ snow that bothers me. I have to clear it., but I use a shovel and my shoulders hate me for that.

            Liked by 1 person

  10. Congratulations again, Teagan. I hope to get to Journey 2 pretty soon. And thanks for the mention! Oh, and I love the very stylish cover as well.
    A very intriguing episode as well. I like Eliza. She’s clever, determined, and fun. The mention of the mask made me think of what we’re going through.
    Keep safe, take care, and I look forward to more of your writing (and covers)!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Heartfelt thanks, Olga.
      You’re welcome about the “thing.” It has been waiting in my list for a long time. I’m happy Eliza has a friend in you. It would be such fun to have a friend like her. Stay safe and well, my chuckaboo!

      Like

    1. Yes… what are our little mechanical friends up to, Robbie? It makes me wonder. Maybe we’ll find out next week. Thanks about the cover. When I thought about placing the retro woman against a glossy black background, I had to make that cover.
      Stay safe and well, my chuckaboo!

      Like

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