Coming in Spring — Back to the 1920s

Friday, February 9, 2019 

We went back in time, from the Roaring Twenties to the Victorian Era. This spring, it’s time to get back to the future, if by the future you mean the days of flappers.

Coming in Spring…

An Uninvited Guest…

In Granny Phanny’s Kitchen!

 Here’s a hint.  What “thread” ties this story to Murder at the Bijou?

Daisy thread ad

Ad for sewing thread, circa 1895

***

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

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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

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 Wednesdays 6 ― Reviews & a Crossover Story

1918-july-vogue-woman-rooster

Wednesday, October 18, 2017

I’m so excited to get reviews!  So I hope you’ll forgive me for crowing. Today author and “fairy whisperer” Colleen Chesebro* posted a review of my debut novel,  Atonement, Tennessee.  What a delight it was to read her mindful review with my morning coffee! I’m thrilled.  Since Colleen is “the fairy whisperer I think she related to my supernatural elements.

Atonement Tennessee

(Colleen challenged me to write a faery story — resulting in the Thistledown — Midsummer Bedlam serial.  The serial is now on hiatus until December.  It will be back!

 

In honor of Colleen’s review, I’ve priced the Kindle version of my debut novel Atonement, Tennessee at just $1.00. 

On Monday I couldn’t resist reblogging a review author Christoph Fischer* did of Murder at the Bijou — Three Ingredients I.  

I hope you’ll visit both Christoph and Colleen. They both have brilliant blogs and books of their own.

Now back to the Jazz Age… 

When I got reviews for these two books within days of each other, I started wondering what Atonement, TN was like during the Roaring Twenties.  However, the characters from two very different novels were all in my head at once… and this is what happened… (I don’t think of it as a spoiler, but there’s a teeny bit of one regarding Murder at the Bijou. If you’re especially sensitive to spoilers, then skip the story.) 

Roaring Twenties Halloween in Atonement Tennessee

The ghost’s eyes glowed bright green as he stared out of the Mirror of Truth and Justice Most Poetic.

“Green like little peas,” the blond murmured.

She blinked as she gazed at the apparition inside the mirror.  Her bobbed tresses were so pale, one might have thought the ghost had scared her into fright-white hair.

She felt the presence of her nearly identical sister behind her and turned.

1920s face

“How odd,” the raven-haired sister calmly stated, the fringe of her flapper gown swaying as she moved closer to the mirror.  “While I wouldn’t put it past that mischievous mirror to trap someone, this spirit seems to have pos-i-lutely gotten there on his own.”

The platinum blond walked forward and took her sister’s hand.  They each touched a corner of the strange mirror.

“Won’t you join us?” together they invited the apparition.

The ghost shrugged uncomfortably as he stepped from the mirror and into the Metatron house.  Years of experience led him to quickly take-in his surroundings.  He noticed two paintings.  The first was an outdoor scene that appeared to be from the late 1700s.  It showed a grand estate house with women getting out of a carriage.  Nearby two girls sat under a tree.  One had pale hair while the other was dark.

He glanced at his two hostesses, comparing them to the painting.  Then his eyes quickly traveled to the other canvas.  It showed two girls in flapper attire.  The raven-haired one sported a headband with a yin and yang symbol.  It was a portrait of the two young women who stood before him.  Green eyes darting rapidly, he looked from one painting to the other, and back to the girls that stood with him.  Could they all be the same?  He knew the sisters were by no means ordinary flappers.

1923 Life woman devilish man masks

The blond reached out and touched the holes in his coat and hat.

Applesauce!  You are a policeman,” she stated.  “A G-man.  That is how you came to the Mirror of Truth and Justice.”

Bullet holes, he remembered as she inspected the damage.  Then the echo of the pain wracked him.  He staggered.

“Marshal Moses Myrick,” he muttered, trying to make his tongue work to introduce himself as civility required.

Each young woman took one of his elbows and had him sit down on a horsehair covered sofa.

“So, you have come to atone?” asked the dark-haired girl.

“But not for whatever caused you to be shot… many times,” the light-haired girl said in a puzzled voice.

“The wrongs I’ve done were part of my job.  Keeping the law and justice,” he said on a gasp.  “I don’t apologize for what I’ve done in the line of duty.”

“Then what?” the women asked as one.

“I couldn’t make Phanny love me.  She married my friend when we were young.  It would have been wrong to interfere.  And now,” he gasped and paused.  “Now he’s long dead, and she’ll know the pain of loss again, because I couldn’t resist keeping her in my life, but I couldn’t give up the law either.”

“You know she loves you,” the raven-haired one commented.  “At least you know it while you’re in this state.  Are you so ready to leave her?”

“How could she ever love a man like me?  What kind of life could I give her when this kind of violence is part of it?” Moses asked, putting a hand to where one of his bullet wounds would have been.

“Well, you won’t know if you stay here,” the brunette smirked in a self-satisfied way.  “You might have some stiff competition, but you just might make Phanny love you yet.  After all, you are a bit of a sheik,” she added playfully.

“I know your pain will be horrible,” the blond began gently.  “But it’s not your time yet.”

The young women helped the shade of Marshal Moses Myrick stand and walked him back to the mirror.  The room filled with intense cold.  The sisters turned toward each other and shared a smile.  When they looked at the mirror, the marshal was once again inside it.  He tipped his fedora as he smiled and disappeared.

Mirror

***

The End

Those who have read Murder at the Bijou will recognize Marshal Moses Myrick. 

If you’ve read Atonement, Tennessee you’ll be wondering if the sisters are the same Metatron family as Annie from that novel.  Yet, the timeline would not be right…  Although, you never know what might be possible in Atonement, TN.  Nope, I’m not telling!  There is a bit of mystery surrounding Annie and Adelle Metatron that comes up in Atonement in Bloom.  It will remain unexplained… at least for now. 

Here is a link to a short story I did in 2015, which is about Annie and Adelle.  (Click here.)

Here are links to the 1920s novels.

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 © 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.  

 

Three Ingredients II – 6: Turnips, Onions, Sauerkraut

Casper cookingWelcome back everyone! I’m pleased to tell you that today’s ingredients were sent by a reader who hasn’t always been with us here at Teagan’s Books — Jo Robinson.

Jo lives in beautiful South Africa, and has written quite a remarkable collection of stories.  She has a wonderful imagination.  For instance in her novel “The Shadow People, The Finding” characters are hurled across time and space, and find themselves on Lapillus, a beautiful world made up of precious gems.  (If you had any idea what a self-proclaimed “rock geek” I am, you’d understand that is a huge attraction. I have such a thing for semiprecious gems…)

Jo says all creatures feathered and furred inspire her writing, so I’m curious to know which of the “critters” in our serial she likes best.

Jo Robinson bk

This week’s ingredients have remarkable health benefits.  I never knew that about sauerkraut!  Another reader, Sally at “Smorgasbord – Variety is the spice of life,” told me she recommends onions (among many other vegetables) for their healthfulness in her book on nutrition and emotional health. Check out Sally’s nutrition book, “Turning Back the Clock.”

Episode 6Maybe I need a nice “dose” of sauerkraut myself — to energize me. But on with our “interactive” serial instead! Without further lament, here is Episode-6.  Bon appétit!

6.  Turnips, Onions, Sauerkraut

A scent of mint was on the breeze and I inhaled with pleasure.  I sat on the ground in Granny Fanny’s garden wiping dirt from a turnip and an interesting idea popped into my head.  “I wonder how turnips would taste cooked with some mint,” I pondered aloud.Vintage rabbit driving

Cinnamon Bun, Granny’s Flemish Giant rabbit, looked at me quizzically and twitched his dirty nose.  I could have offered the huge bunny a turnip, but he clearly enjoyed digging up his own.  Just as we both went back to the dirt, a loud noise cracked the air.  I jumped half out of my skin, and Cinnamon Bun dashed to the security of his hutch.

The loud sound was followed by the beep-beep or a horn.  I looked down toward the road and saw a Dodge Roadster.  It wasn’t new.  I guessed it was about a 1921 model.  It was a black two-seater with a tan rag-top and tan spoke wheels.  The automobile was not familiar to me.  However, it pulled into Granny’s driveway.  A moment later Andy Avis jumped out and hurried to the back yard, where I sat in the vegetable garden.

I shook my head and chuckled to myself.  It seemed like every automobile Andy ever drove backfired like that.

“What do you think?” Andy asked motioning to the Dodge.

“It’s the berries,” I told him, because it really was a cute little vehicle.  “What happened to your Studebaker?” I voiced my thought.1921 Dodge Raodster

“Oh, it wasn’t worth the cost of shipping it to Hollywood, so I had to let her go,” he said with a touch of regret in his voice.  “Garth Gilley, down at the garage, let me rent this roadster from him.  If I knew more about how long I was going to be in town, I’d just buy it,” he said and I chuckled.  “Yes, Pip. I’ve already succumbed to the charms of a new vehicle, before the dust of the Studebaker has even settled,” he said, taking off his hat and placing it over his heart in pretend drama.

Garth,owned Gilley’s Garage.  Garth’s brother Godfrey owned Gilley’s Grocery where my grandmother and I bought much of our food.  Godfrey was attentive to Granny Fanny’s preferences for just the right produce, and Garth handled her Model-T with kid gloves.  They were good people, the Gilleys.

I took my basket of turnips, and on impulse plucked some fresh mint.  Andy followed me to the side of the cottage, that’s where the water pump was.  Always thoughtful, Andy got the water going and I rinsed off the vegetables and cleaned my hands.

Vintage Water PumpThe pump was near the open kitchen window.  An unexpected sound caused me to be immediately concerned.  Andy asked me if I needed any more water, and I shushed him.  Then I apologized in a whisper and motioned to the window.  Had I heard sobbing?  Granny was the only one inside the cottage.  Or was she?

I strained to hear, but Wriggles the pug was whining at Cinnamon Bun’s hutch, trying to get him to come outside.  I didn’t worry about Cinnamon with the dog, because the rabbit was much larger.  Besides, they seemed to be friendly with each other.  They weren’t making much noise, but it was enough to prevent me hearing what was happening inside the cottage.

Yes, yes… I know I shouldn’t listen that way, but I felt awfully protective of my grandmother.  Suddenly I heard a consoling voice.  A male voice.  Quietly I moved to the house and stood below the kitchen window.  Andy was right behind me.

“Holy Hannah,” Andy whispered.  “It can’t be.”

I scrunched up my face and gave Andy a look because he wasn’t making any sense.  Then the voices became louder.  The man had an accent.  Applesauce!

“No, no, no bella.  A flower like you should not cry.  Dry your tears and tell the Maestro all about it.  This will make you feel better, no?” the ghost chef consoled my grandmother — and she let him, despite the fact that she kicked his posterior into the refrigerator and slammed shut the door the first time she saw him..

My jaw dropped open.  I heard Granny mumble something about onions.man_ray_tears

“No, no, Luce dei Miei Occhi!  Light of my eyes, you do not fool the Maestro.  These tears are not from the onion.  Someone has broken your heart, I can see it.”

Suddenly the sobbing grew louder.  Poor Granny!  She was bawling her eyes out.  I moved to go inside and make sure she was okay.  However, Andy held me back.

“Actually Pip… the ghost seems to be doing a good job of comforting her.  There might be things that she needs to get off her chest that she wouldn’t necessarily want to tell her granddaughter,” my friend whispered.

I had to admit that Andy had a point.  My thoughts went to the big shindig where we had cornered the gang of bootleggers, and moments before I had accidentally found Dabney Daniels and Granny in a passionate kiss.  Granny had rejected him because she1920s Arrow couple couldn’t accept being older than the handsome detective.  I figured she was probably no more than a dozen years his senior, and I couldn’t understand why she let that bother her.  But it did, and it was her choice, so I didn’t try to convince her otherwise.  Anyhow, when you consider Granny’s mixed feelings for Detective Dabney Daniels, maybe the ghost was right.  Maybe her heart was breaking.

I heard indistinguishable words in between sobs.  Then finally she spoke clearly.  “I don’t know if it was the right thing for me, but it had to be the right thing for him.  It just had to be.  A beautiful man, still in his prime shouldn’t be saddled with an old woman,” she said, though Maestro Martino protested.  “But just because I turned him down — it didn’t mean I wanted him to move halfway up the east coast!” she cried.  “And I surely didn’t want him to run off and do something so dangerous!” she wailed.

In between a lot of blubbering we learned that Dabney Daniels went to Washington DC to become part of a special taskforce.  Granny also felt a little betrayed, because her old friend, Federal Marshal, Moses Myrick gave Daniels a glowing recommendation for the new position.

“So he’s gone for training with the U.S. Marshal’s Service Fugitive Taskforce.  That’s even more dangerous than his work as a police detective.  If anything happens to Dabney I’ll never forgive myself,” Granny sobbed.  “It’s my fault.  I pushed him into it by rejecting his romantic advances.”

Martino continued to console Granny Fanny.  Once she seemed calmer, Andy and I went to the back porch and inside the cottage.  As I opened the kitchen door I heard Kitchen Maid adbustling sounds.  To my surprise, it wasn’t Granny moving around her kitchen.  It was Maestro in his white chef’s apron and hat, along with those odd looking Renaissance era boots.  His back was to us, but he appeared to be making tea and a snack.

I couldn’t believe Granny would sit still for the ghost to be cooking in her kitchen — not after the way she had acted the first time she saw him.  I supposed that was testament to how distraught she was.  I also didn’t know what to expect the ghost chef to do when he saw us.  I thought maybe he’d wink out, disappear; whatever you’d call it.

“Ah! Signorina o Signore please do make yourselves comfortable.  The Maestro, he will soon have prepared something nice to make everyone feel better, no?” the spirit said.

Granny avoided looking at us.  I knew she didn’t want me or Andy to see her tear stained face.  She excused herself and went to wash her face.  She gave a sidelong, annoyed glance to Maestro for daring to do anything in her kitchen, but she hurried out of the room without saying anything else.

Maestro Martino turned to watch her retreating form as she went down the hall.  He was humming a tune that I recognized for a madrigal, It Was a Lover and His Lass.  So intent was the ghost on watching my grandmother’s backside that he overfilled a teacup and didn’t notice, even when the liquid spilled over the countertop to the blue and white tile floor.

It Was a Lover and His Lass – Highland High School Madrigal singers 20131215

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qTvcDjOrA9A

I cleared my throat loudly and then got a dishtowel and mopped up the mess.  The Maestro acted as if nothing had happened.  He served tea and sat down at the kitchen table to join Andy and me.  There was something different about his face.  I looked at him closely.  The corner of his lower lip was swollen and inflamed.  He seemed to sip his tea very carefully.

It was puzzling to me… after all, he was a ghost.  “Maestro, is everything okay,” I said pointing to the corner of my own mouth to show what I meant.

He sighed unhappily.  “No, Signorina.  It is only …” he paused, searching for the correct term.  “It is only a canker sore, I think you call it,” he said sardonically.

“Oh, that can be miserable,” I said sympathetically.

I moved to the refrigerator.  I took out a dish of sauerkraut and got a fork from the drawer.  “Here.  Get a wad of kraut Sauerkraut adand put it against the mouth ulcer for a minute or two.  Then chew it up and swallow it,” I instructed him in the same remedy Granny had
given others in the past.  “It works, I promise.”

He did as I said.  After a moment he chewed and gulped, then washed down the sauerkraut with his tea.  Andy looked at the ghost chef with a speculative expression on his face that probably matched my own.  My friend seemed to weigh a couple of options and then discard them.  Finally Andy cleared his throat and questioned Maestro Martino.

“Pardon me, but how can a ghost have a canker sore?” he asked what might have been an impertinent question as politely as he could.

“Ah Signore,” Maestro began and shook his head remorsefully.  “When first I met you two lovely young people, I told you of my predicament.  Through no fault of my own, I pissed off the Pope and in short the point of the parable is now I am a poltergeist,” he said and waited for us to confirm that we remembered.  “Perhaps I postponed providing the piece where my predicament also presents another problem,” he said looking embarrassed.

Had the spirit really used that many Ps?  I blinked and gave my head a shake to make sure I was keeping up with him.

Vintage kitchen bouquet ad“Well, part of the predicament is…” he paused and winced as apparently the ulcer pained him when he moved his mouth a certain way.  “Whenever I lust after a beautiful woman… I get the canker sore.”

Andy chortled and I gave his ankle a little kick under the table, and told him he was being insensitive.  However, Andy just laughed again.  “Pip, don’t you realize?” he asked, though I didn’t understand what he meant.  “The beautiful woman he was lusting after was your grandmother,” he said as he leaned his chair backward and
 rocked it on two legs while he chuckled at me.

My eyes popped open wide as I looked at Maestro Martino accusingly.  The ghost looked down at his teacup and nodded penitently.  I got up but I didn’t know what to do with myself.  When I rested my hand on the countertop it landed on the dishtowel, sopping wet with tea.  I threw the towel at Maestro’s face.

The ghost immediately became transparent, and the wet towel went right through him.  It plopped wetly across Andy’s face.  Apparently I threw it pretty hard.  Andy was still leaning his chair back on two legs, and he toppled over when the wet towel landed, covering his face.Lon-Chaney_London_after_Midnight poster

When Andy sat up, wet white towel still covering his face, he looked like a ghost out
of a Lon Chaney movie.  I made a comment to that effect, and Andy proceeded to make monster-like motions and chase me around the cottage, with the towel still covering his face.  It was amazing that he didn’t run into more furniture than he did.

Wriggles the pug’s sensitive ears picked up the excited noises of play and he barreled into the game.  The little dog barked as he chased behind Andy.  I ran into the parlor and both of them followed.  Granny Fanny must have been “on a mission” to learn something again, because there were several stacks of newspapers and other periodicals from the library around the room.

Unable to see very much, Andy stumbled over a stack of newspapers.  Our laughter subsided, but Wriggles hadn’t given up the game.  The pug bounced around on the strewn papers and in a moment the entire floor was covered.  Andy and I set about collecting the pages and putting them back into the right order.

I noticed that they were very old issues of the Savannah Tribune, from before I wasVintage Pug even born.  Andy was on his hands and knees trying to get newspapers away from the dog without tearing them.  Something caught his eye, and he shifted from his knees to a sitting position to read a page.  He scratched his head and made a humpf sound that I’d often heard him make when he was thinking about an idea for one of his science fiction stories.

“What is it?” I asked.

“This name is familiar, but I don’t know why.  It’s an announcement article about a local boy rising up in the organization of the Church here,” Andy said as he continued to browse the write-up.  “Two brothers had been on scholarships to some hoity-toity business university, but during summer break, back home in Savannah, one of them suddenly joined the priesthood.”

“Do you mean the Binghamtons?” I asked

“Yepper,” he said and then smacked his palm against the polished oak floor with a loud smack that started the pug barking.

I shushed the dog by scratching his back.  Wriggles lived up to his name.  That little dog loved getting his back scratched.  He stuck out his tongue to lick his little pugged nose and wagged his tail until I thought he’d tip over.

Andy continued. “Now I remember where I’ve seen that name.  I saw it when I was researching the ownership history of the abandoned factory Manny Mayer had me buy for him.  I don’t remember the first name, except that it started with a ‘B’ but the surname was Binghamton for sure,” he said.

I remembered the old photograph I had seen at the Kingston mansion during the big shindig. It seemed like Daisy wanted me to see something in it.  I remembered it clearly.  I saw Daisy step through the broad French doors.  She went to a large framed photograph and placed her hand on it.  She nodded to 1917 Vogueme.  I knew there was information in that photograph. But then Daisy vanished.

He handed me the yellowed page.  It had a much smaller version of the same old photograph.  However this one had the surnames of the men listed under it.  Sure enough, one of them was Binghamton.  The image was so small, that it was hard to tell if one of them was a much younger version of the man who was now a bishop.

Looking closely, I realized there were two men who were thinner than the others.  The bishop was a very slight man.  So those must be the Binghamton brothers.  However, I couldn’t make out much about their faces from the old newsprint image.

Andy and I sat back and looked at each other.  One of the Binghamtons had owned the factory where Daisy the ghost girl said something happened to her.  It was something so horrible that she blocked it out of her living memory and she was afraid to go inside the place even as a ghost.

“We need to make tracks back to that factory and look around,” I said.

***

How to Preserve Onions

Next time, Barbeque Sauce, Baby Bok Choy, Aluminium Foil

 

Copyright © 2014 by Teagan Ríordáin Geneviene

All rights reserved.

No part of this book 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 from Pinterest unless stated otherwise.