Sunday, 14 February 2010

Saturday Wordzzle 99

My, my, how time flies! I'm running late this week but I'm here now. If you would like to play go here for rules and guidance.

The Mini (rigid, spiritual, ribbon, web cam, vitamins)

This is part of of an ongoing story. A blind seer has had a vision about a young man coming to some as yet unspecified harm from an old man living in a tower. To try to avert this fate, she has anonymously paid for him to take a holiday somewhere far away. The young man has arrived at the holiday town and has noticed an interesting tower, which he plans to investigate the next day. The seer has a nightmare which she believes is connected to the young man's fate and resolves to go after him. She finds herself in the holiday town and realises this is the very place the tower is located. She gets lost trying to locate it and hears footsteps approaching. The young, on his way to the tower sees a blind ladt trying to cross the road. The man approaches her and they talk. The seer soon discovers that this is the very man from her vision and bursts into relieved tears. She apologises and asks him to accompany her to where they can have a quiet talk. His phone rings, interrupting the conversation.

The young man speaks...

I can feel myself going rigid with rage. When I’m angry like this I can feel it like a ribbon tied tightly around my head and getting tighter. Just how does my sister know exactly which buttons to push to get my back up? As if it matters whether I take vitamins in tablet form or get them from fresh veg anyway? Since Mum died, she’s gone all spiritual and is always trying to ‘look after’ me and it’s driving me crazy. I’m a grown man for goodness sake! I wouldn’t be surprised to find she’s hidden a web cam in my flat just so she can keep tabs on me. I snap the phone shut while she’s still talking – that’ll annoy her no end, but I’ll be paying for it in earache next time we talk. Oh well. I turn back to the blind lady I’ve so rudely left standing there and OH NO!, LOOK OUT! She can’t see the car coming round the bend in the road and the idiot driver’s going too fast to make the turn properly. She lets out a surprised shriek as I shove her roughly out of the way and oh, my days! The pain! THE PAIN!

The 10-Worder (thermometer, Pandora, vivid, languorous, Saturday, pancreas, apple dumplings, watch tower, lichen, sparrow)

New to Harold? The summary is here.

It was a beautiful Saturday morning with the rising thermometer inviting folks outside in their shirtsleeves. Through a gap in the Salamander room’s blinds, Harold could see a sparrow on the lichen-draped branch of a nearby tree singing its heart out in the sunshine – albeit silently, as no sound penetrated the double-glazed window. He was getting a bit fidgety, truth to tell, the magic of PowerPoint having worn off already. Agent Othello’s carefully bulleted list of information was depressingly short: little more than some names and last known locations.
“What other things do we need to consider?” asked Mercury, watching Prada languorously completing another one of her vivid and intricate doodles.
“You might want to think about how whoever is behind this actually locates their targets.” offered Teatime, “Neither demons nor angels stand out in human society unless they choose to.”
“That’s an interesting point.” replied Mercury as Othello tapped it into the computer, “Are they using Spotting or some kind of technology?”
“Spotting?” asked Harold.
“Yes,” explained Mercury, “Some people have the gift of being able to sense your kind – India, for example, has this gift.”
A few things suddenly made sense to Harold.
“So,” he said turning to India, “Back at the railway station, you knew? Fascinating!”
“Yes.” India replied, “You made my teeth itch – still do, as a matter of fact”
“India!” said Prada, looking up from her sketch of a garland of flowers around the words “apple dumplings”. “That’s not very nice!”
India shrugged, “Well, it’s true. That’s how it feels”.
“Could whoever it is – “ Teatime stopped, “Can we please give our mystery opponent some kind of name? I’m fed up of saying “whoever it is” all the time.”
“OK, we’ll call him, her, it or them Enigma” declared Mercury, “Now, moving on, Mr Teatime has raised a very good point. So far as we know, only Spotters can detect angels or demons. It would be very handy for us if some technological means existed, but it doesn’t. It’s a gift, and a rare one at that.”
“Is it so rare that Enigma couldn’t be employing a Spotter?” ventured Teatime. “Over what range does this gift work?”
“About 20-30 feet at the most” said India.
“All of the disappearances,” said Othello, bringing up a map on his computer, “were within 20 miles of here, but not particularly close together. Unless Enigma has a number of Spotters, it’s hard to see how they could have been so successful in locating their targets.”
At that moment, there was a polite knock on the door and the fresh-faced young agent that Harold had scared earlier poked his head into the room.
“Agent Mercury?” he said, “A report from the Watch Tower has just come in and I think you should see it.”
“Excuse me,” said Mercury, making his way out of the room. “Take five everyone, get a coffee or something.”
Glad of the interruption, the others repaired to the break room.
Someone had brought in a tray of home-made cupcakes and had left them with a hand-written sign indicating that anyone could have one provided that they left a donation in the box provided. The money raised would go to fund research into diseases of the pancreas.
“These look very tempting,” remarked Harold, dropping some money into the box and snagging a cake.
“You’d know all about that,” said Prada lightly, taking a cake for herself.
“I’ll let you into a secret,” said Harold, lowering his voice in a mock-conspiratorial whisper, “I’m not actually very good at it, but please don’t tell the others, I have a reputation to maintain.”
Prada laughed.
“Your secret is safe with me.”
“Ahem,” interrupted Teatime, “Are you planning to keep that cake all to yourself, old sock? Only, being the brains in this partnership is hungry work, don’t you know?”
“Sorry,” Harold apologised, breaking off a large piece and handing to the little monkey. He bit into his own piece and closed his eyes in pleasure: these were good!
“Can you actually taste things?” asked Prada. “I always thought your kind didn’t need food…”
“We need energy, and food is as good a way to get it as any – and very enjoyable too, I might add. “ explained Harold, “Plus, I can eat anything and not get fat..”
“Now I know you’re evil!” groaned Prada, “I’ve just bought myself another 2 hours in the gym.”
“She’s being awfully friendly with that Fallen,” said India quietly to Othello as she poured coffee for herself. “Someone should have a word.”
“Prada’s an experienced agent,” replied Othello softly, “She knows what she’s about. I reckon she’ll get more information out of that one than the rest of us ever will. ‘Softly, softly catchee monkey’, as they say.” He chuckled a little at his own wit.
“Hmm, she needs to be careful she doesn’t end up like Pandora – opening up a box full of trouble.” Was India’s sour reply.
Agent Mercury entered the room, his face grave.
“People,” he said, “I’ve just received some very shocking news.” He paused to ensure they were all listening. “Agent Emerald has been found murdered.”


  1. Wow! The plots thicken.... As always I am left wanting more. I look forward to next week's episodes. I thought you did brilliantly with these words... especially clever - getting rid of apple dumplings in a doodle. Well done.

  2. Goodness! I can't wait to find out who Enigma is & how s/he is picking targets!

    I'm a little worried about the young man in the mini...

  3. Well done with the tricky words as usual. With me, the words still have the tendencey to run the story and take me in directions I had no intention of going. Probably because I've never been clear enough about where I wanted to go in the first place... LOL

  4. murdered!!!.................. *gasps....

    I just never know what's going to happen.. I'm addicted to this story you know.. it can never end!.. nevaaaaahhhhhhhhh......

  5. Excellent story and the way you wove the words into the story was wonderful.

  6. Raven - It feels a bit of a cheat to use Prada's doodles 2 weeks in a row, but I was getting desperate and Saturday was looming. These words did give me a good mental workout this week for sure.

    @Bug and Dawntreader - I, too, can't wait to find out how it all pans out. Seriously, I'm winging most of this stuff as I only have a rough idea where it's headed. All of my writing's like that. I've tried plotting things out in details but when I sit down to write, the story just takes off in its own direction. Ther words have definitely lengthened the first story for sure. Harold is going to be quite long anyway so a few meanders here and there aren't such a problem.

    @Watercats - "Dead! Murdered! And somebody's responsible!" (Plan 9 From Outer Space - a classic B movie). This story will end when a) I manage to finish it off (don't hold yer breath) or b) everybody gets sick of it and stops leaving addictively lovely comments on it.
    I has a needy.

    @Connie T - Thank you very much indeed.

    And thanks to everyone generally for sticking with me thus far.


Without your comments, I am but a wave without a shore...