29. Waiting; waiting for you.

Timelines run at funny angles.

So do ley lines, allegedly. As for Chi lines they travel up and down your body like nobodies business. Railway lines are all curved and paid for out of government funding. Tramlines run through Manchester but not Liverpool. The Tram in Istanbul can take you from the Grand Bazaar to the Dolmabahçe Palace. Fishing lines can get you caught out. Thick headed Presidents can get you into Soup Lines. And White Lines can get you into trouble if you drive across one while being watched by a Policeman in Gran Canaria.

Anyway back to modern day Uranus. Now as yet they had not invented the aeroplane, so it would take a long time for Jarse to get all the way to Setebos, explain his message, get his reward and lead the vengeful forces of Lord Chalfont to the Charnel House. This would take the suspense and derring-do out of the tale so we have to work in a few unlikely events and the odd coincidence.

Fat Larry woke the next day to hear jeering, ranting and raving outside his front door. He emerged into the glorious sunshine of a brisk cool morning to be confronted by an angry crowd from the village.

“Bastard Gremlins!” gargol.png

“Unruly demons of Chaos!”

“Red means Red!”

“Exit means Exit!”

“Many a muckle makes a mickle!”

“You can’t take it with you!”

“One swallow does not impune my reputation!”

“A stitch in Time will save the denim!”

“I blame the parents!”

This last is a quite legitimate statement when dealing with Gremlins. Not that many of the Gremlins are legitimate which makes the first jeer quite appropriate too.

Larry was soon joined by Mrs White and the Dopey Dwarf, as well as the five travellers and a camel that suddenly appeared from the bottom of a wormhole which had recently passed over the Desert near Abu Dhabi. The camel spat at the crowd and walked away.

“What have they done this time?” asked Mrs White, knowing that Larry would soon be popping off to fix a broken spade handle or counting the leaves on the privets if the stress got too much.

One of the townsfolk held up an empty red paint tin.

“They’ve painted the Town red!” shouted an angry member of the mob who I can’t be bothered to name.

“Bastards!” declared Larry.

“Look folks I’d love to help you out but there are three broken brooms and a couple of dripping taps that are demanding my immediate attention. Mrs. White can you deal with this?” With that he turned round, fled into the House and set to on his broom repairing routine.

“Do you mean literally?” asked Hanny, “or did they just go out and get pissed?”

“Both!” said the unnamed inhabitant.

“You mean they shot up to the Land of Wails, found the village of Both and painted it red!”

“No not Both; both! As in they did both things you asked us about. They got pissed, with the aid of some mischievous Brownie I believe, and then they got all of these tins of red paint and painted the Town. Being pissed they didn’t do a very good job of it either. There are lots of streaks and missing bits!”

“What do expect us to do?” asked the pragmatic Mrs. White.

“Well,” said the spokesman, who is now known as Tom, “we actually like the colour Red. And overall it creates a really interesting post-modern look to the Town. It creates a mood that suggests these folk are a bit scary, a bit avant-garde, almost Bohemian. So we like that. It’s better than that mix of off white and shitty brown beams everywhere, with the twee window boxes and antique village pumps. Not that we’re a village. No; we’re a Town.  It’s just that they didn’t paint it very well and we think you lot should come and finish the job properly.”

Hanny was a little startled at this prospect. She had listened to all that had been said. She knew that painting and decorating could take a heavy toll on a girls hands, particularly if she had to clean brushes with turpentine. Besides they had mentioned a mischievous Brownie which could only mean one thing; Lord Chalfont would soon find out. Any delay caused by having to paint the town would allow enough time for the Brownie to get to Setebos, deliver his message and let Chalfont send a recce patrol to check out the lie of the land. This would have to be avoided at all costs.

“How much would it cost to bring in a team of professional builders and decorators to do the job properly?” asked Hanny.

“There’s no such thing in these parts!” declared Tom, feeling himself grow into the role of spokesman. Soon he would have a surname, possibly taking on a more important function in the story. Not really likely but it’s worth keeping his hopes up or he might stop offering interesting comments.

“The nearest place you can get professional Painters, Decorators and Interior designers is from the Town of Rougham Upper Bit, which is about half way between here and Setebos if my Geography is correct. There you will find the offices of Beane, Gorn and Dunnit decorators to Royalty. But that is too far away! We want to see the job finished as soon as possible before we feel a different decorating faddish makeover on the horizon! Maybe we will get visited by a long haired fop who thinks Purple is the new white; or a poisonous Dwarf who wants everything back to minimalism. Or some other shitty tend in home décor. In fact I bet there is some idiot out there who thinks pebble dashing could come back in fashion!”

“I´m good at that,” exclaimed Greg. “And I bet Peter could lay down a fusillade too if it wasn´t for those magic knickers!”

Mrs White and Hanny looked at the boys in disgust.

Steve went red with embarrassment.

Hanny felt Thwarted; he was one of the other dwarfs who now had a big smile on his face.

She understood the desire to make sure the townsfolk kept their houses looking fashionable, not wanting some interior designer to come along too soon and tell them that Towns painted entirely red were passé. Such a fop is likely to tell them something like ‘I see a red door and I want it painted Black!’ A Towns identity meant so much to some of the busybodies who have fuck all to do with their lives. She understood all of this, just as she felt the urgency of the Quest.

Peter was talking gibberish most of the time due to the magic in his arse. Why he’d even tried pulling that Snow White bird!

Preposterous!

And his chat-up lines were absolute shite.6915049cfc4eda542cd35b946c63aef6_original.png

‘Do you come here often?’

‘How do you like your eggs? Fried or fertilised?’

‘My love for you is like diarrhoea, I just can’t hold it in.’

‘Is that a mirror in your pocket? Cause I can see myself in your pants!’

‘Do your legs hurt from running through my dreams all night?’

‘If I could rearrange the alphabet I would put U and I together.’

‘If a fat man puts you in a bag at night, don’t worry I told Santa I wanted you for Christmas.’

This last one had stopped the conversation. To suggest to a woman that she could be kidnapped and put into a sack by an overweight fictional character was just too much. And then to be delivered in the sack to a sex mad Pixy – well not a situation to enthral any girl. (Yes I know they are all fictional characters but that does not matter when Snow White is being chatted up by a Pixy with a sore arse.)

Not that Hanny felt she had a claim on Peter now that he’d let himself down by overdoing the enchanting charms in his bottom. Suddenly she felt some relief herself; she was fond of Peter, in what she would now describe as a sort of sisterly way. It would be nice if she could set him up with a good looking bit of totty, then she could go back to her old lifestyle in Setebos, only having to concern herself with the Kings personal hygiene. This love and relationships business was just too much for Hanny. Love can take you half way round the world to meet a girl who flips you off on the first night.

Still the Quest had to proceed. It would be a feather in her cap if she were to return with evidence of the Permanent Cure. Yet a postponement for painting would allow time for the enemy to act.

She emerged from her reverie to hear Bogey Questioning Tom, who it appeared, had the surname Bomb.

“So are there any bridges in the Town?”

“Just the one,” said Tom Bomb hoping to take a leading role in the next piece of the tale.

“Is it painted Red?”Flying fish.png
“Yes!”

“Does anyone live under it?”

“No!”

“Sold! Look I’ll happily help you paint the rest of the Town if I can have sole occupancy of the space under the Bridge. I’ll maintain the Red Bridge to the best of my ability; all I ask is a licence to extract a toll from all users.”

Tom Bomb consulted with several other townsfolk. He was glad he’d come along to this meeting this morning as it had given him a new sense of importance. He felt like the lynchpin in some secret negotiations. His name would go down in the History of Gobroke as the guy who sorted out the colour scheme and bridge repair problem. Mind you, from now on Gobroke would be known as Redbridge, and at some future date would elect a man intent on killing off the poor, though that´s another story.

Funny really.

“Would you charge foot passengers?”

“If you want to carry passengers on your feet then I will have to charge a nominal fee which would be accepted graciously; I’d say ‘Have a nice day!’ as they crossed. Vehicles and animals would require a heavier toll as their weight would cause more damage to the underlying structure of the bridge.”

“It’s a deal!”

With that Bogey persuaded Peter, Greg and Steve to lend a hand. They listened to Hanny’s misgivings but ignored her totally. If you can’t beat them you may as well ignore them, said Hanny to herself.

So as the lads knuckled down to some hard graft with paint and brushes Hanny sat alone on a seat of stone and munched and mumbled on a bare old bone.

Timelines run at funny angles.

Without them stories just wouldn’t fit together properly.

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28. Heard it through the Grapes Vine.

The grapevine of spies that helped Chalfont keep his finger on the pulse on Uranus, extended beyond all expectations. There were times that Lord Chalfont himself was shocked by the information superhighway he appeared to control. It was almost like he had a propaganda machine that could reach out and gather vital data from every unsuspecting idiot on the planet. Just like a Social Media site. So it will come as no surprise to hear that Chalfont very quickly became alerted to the presence of the Questers in the Charnel House of Fat Larry. Still I suppose stories of sore bottoms will always be heard on the grapes vine.the-garden-of-earthly-delights-by-hieronymus-bosch-1

Of course Larry being a Pixy, his mission to look after the dead would be quite well known to Chalfont. Coupled with the fact that the gorgeous looking Ogres, Mr. and Mrs. VannBergen, had recently arrived in Setebos with a story to sell about a ravenous Fairy who had saved the arse of a bedraggled Pixy. This had  led the nasty Chancellor to concentrate his spies on the Eastern border of the Wild, not to far from Where Things Are More Pleasant and that.

As luck would have it one of his more scurrilous Brownies sat drinking in the little town of Gobroke, slamming back several pints of Lager with whisky chasers, when in came a dozen or more Gremlins all carrying tins of red paint. This particular Brownie went by the name of Hugh Jarse and coped well with hunting with the hounds whilst running with the fox; in other words he was a two faced, double crossing, junk bond dealing bastard. Never a one to let an opportunity slip, he soon got deep into conversation with the chaotic creatures who had entered the bar.

This did take some time as a dozen Gremlins trying to order beer was a magnificent sight to behold.

“Twelve pints of Lager please my good man,” would have been the expected comment from a spokesGremlin.

Not in this case.

Each of them tried to order a round of drinks simultaneously. There was no coherence to the requests; even the dimmest of bartenders could have recognised the same request if shouted at him twelve times. At a brewery the Gremlins would remain sober.

No so easy.

Some asked for twelve different drinks, some for seventeen. Others asked for three glasses of Babycham, Rum and Coke and a Bacardi and Coke. Then another ordered seven cups of Earl Grey Tea and a Cappuccino. One asked for two glasses of water and a crate of milk. There was also a request for a glass of Red Red Wine that would go straight to his head, and a fishbowl full of Tequila; while one brave soul requested two bottles of Dehydrated Water. The most confused of the Gremlins put in a request for Pie and Chips twice, a Sofa, a new pair of trousers and a bag of marbles.

The barman asked them to go and stand in a corner, leaving just one at the bar. All of the Gremlins disappeared to different corners, a couple climbing up the chimney to hide.

He tried again.

One was to stay at the bar so seven did, the other five hiding in the fridge. The barman was considering banning them but remembered they had already been banned dozens of times.

“It’s chaos when you lot come in!” he said, yet again. It was like asking the spoilt bastards of the Bullingdon Group to calm down and behave and take away that cuntish attitude.

Hugh Jarse decided to interrupt.

20100425132030!Hieronymus_Bosch-Removing_the_Rocks_from_the_Head-Detail

He knew that Fat Larry’s place was the only other possible refuge for the travellers should they come this way. He ordered twelve pints of Lager Shandy, paying for it by squeezing a Gremlins testicle until it dropped its money. He then told the Gremlins to cause as much confusion in the bar as possible. This was a double bluff leading the Gremlins into an internal spiral of misconceptions, deep reflections and uncertainty. Thus they stood perfectly still while trying to figure out what the fuck they were meant to do.

“Had any interesting visitors recently?” asked the devious Brownie of the one Gremlin that remained standing next to him.

“Yes and they’re

 

all dead but great fun to be with and lead me to feel that I am living a very satisfying and fulfilled existence!” decreed the chaotic oaf, quoting from Fat Larry’s

Bible.

“Any living guests?”

“Yes. No. Maybe.”

“Explain.”

“Well we had this Troll come in today and you can never tell if they’re dead or not. Then there was this Pixy with a magic arse or something so he’s probably dead. Then there was a friendly Gnome and a Fairy with big tits. I liked her and would happily give her a good seeing to if only I could arrange it.”

“Fairy Hanny?”

“Yes I like that too!”

It was enough for Hugh.

The shifty little fucker had scooped the top story. Lord Chalfont would pay him a fortune for the information. Either that or have his tentacles removed and pinned to a wall. He bought the Gremlins another round of drinks. He left the pub as the Gremlins emerged in a frightful tizzy, ready to paint the town red.

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27. Fat Larry and the Charnel House.

As the Sun beat down they lay on the ground and you could almost hear them talk. It turned out it was just Ethel with her lawnmower. Still, she knows what she likes.

Bogey had guided them carefully through the wild country, past the most notorious gathering places of the Ogres, avoiding as many bridges as possible in order to miss out on the tedium of “Fol de Roll! I’m a Troll!” which would invariably lead to “Hi Bogey!” as the would-be assailant emerged from the bridge. With all of his cunning, guile, philosophy and a decent Ordnance Survey map procured from the W.H. Smith shop at Ipswich Station, Bogey led them back in to the lands Where Things Are More Pleasant, Milk Was Drinkable and Everyone Except Politicians are Honest.

Just at the edge of the Wild Lands, or the Wildies as they are known, there lies one of the more unusual spots on Uranus. No I am sure that you, being an avid reader, will have read all those wonderful works by the Grimm boys and the Anderson chap and by Tolkien and Gamain and Swifty, you will no doubt remember that at the end of every tale, they all live happily ever after.

This is pure twaddle.cover 1

Balderdash.

Hogwash.

Bunkum.

Codswallop.

Tosh.

And Bullshit.

“Never heard so much humbug in my life,” declared one anally retentive slug.

The well hidden truth is that …

Even Fairies die.

Odd Fairies die too.

Think of all the dead things on Uranus.

You can stop now as you probably feel sick.

Have a cup of tea and a slice of lemon cake.

So what do they do with the dead things on Uranus?

We can´t have Plague Doctors screaming ‘Bring out your Dead!’;  that is so undignified for Fairies and Pixy’s and that.

And they don’t follow the Irish tradition of sitting round with dead bodies to see if they might just possibly wake up.

They’re not quite that civilised on Uranus.

What they like to do on Uranus is to get a message to the appropriate authorities, along the lines of ‘Aunty Flo is dead, please dispose. Thank you, Alex the Fairy’. Then up comes a discreet little wagon and takes the body off to a Charnel House.

However within the polite Society of Uranus nobody ever mentions that somebody has died. It is just unheard of! Like suggesting that women fart.

Instead the euphemism is that people ‘go travelling’.

“How is Aunty Flo?”

“Oh she is travelling!”

“When will she be back?”

“When she has finished travelling!”

So it goes.

Now we find ourselves in the domain of Fat Larry, Keeper of the Dead., Fixer of Brooms, Father of Two Fat Lasses and all round Boring Bastard.

Larry is a Pixy with a Mission.

He wants the dead out the house, in the van, looked after and disposed of as quickly and politely as possible. Larry is one of the Funeral Directors of Uranus. He is good at this job as he himself is already brain dead.

It is very unusual to find a Pixy in charge of the Dead; the job usually being left to disgraced Brownies or even the odd Witch. In the good old days it was a common occupation for the more civilised of Trolls though this was always a bit dodgy; since even a civilised Troll has relatives, some of whom will eat anything. In the extreme cases the job might be taken on by a retarded Maths teacher who will sing praises to his Lord.

Hallelujah!20100425132030!Hieronymus_Bosch-Removing_the_Rocks_from_the_Head-Detail

Here on the Edge of the Wild this wonderful Charnel House is in the incapable hands of Fat Larry. Not that he did the job all by himself. Like all of the Houses of the Dead across the planet the donkey work is carried out by Gremlins. This is an appropriate calling as normally anything the Gremlins get asked to do will break, and breaking the dead is not really an issue, unless it is to tissue.

The Questing Quintet approached Fat Larry’s House as the Sun danced down toward the horizon, licking the rooftops with her last light of the day; she was back off to have a look at how that Sloth was getting on in the jungles of South America.

The building was quite large, being laid out in the shape of a capital ‘H’. Larry’s Office and bedroom lay in the bar in the middle, the two wings being occupied by the dead and the Gremlins.

“Hello,” cried Bogey, entering through the main door with all the stealth of a cat that had just crapped in a pair of shoes.

“Anyone home?”

Stupid Question really.

“If you have a stiff to dispose of take it down the corridor on your left, hand it over to Gasser the Chief Gremlin, leave your name and address at the desk and then go home. If you want to be at the internment, which I doubt, let me know and we’ll put on a more dignified shovelling.”

The voice which sounded these words was not that of a Pixy, nor the guttural mumblings of a Gremlin. Instead it was the delightful tones of a very pretty girl, now emerging from the room on the right.

She stopped suddenly as she caught sight of this gathering of bedraggled troubadours. Yet here was a girl who could take all of life in her stride, then laugh.

“Which of you is dead?” she asked with a smile in her eye, noting the cadaverous build of Bogey. It was more than a smile; it was a twinkle. And the lovely lass could easily produce a twinkle in any eye. She could tell there would be a tale to tell, something to brighten up her daily routine, something that would make her smile as she Questioned the Pixy, the Fairy, the Goblin, Gnome and Troll.

“That Goblin looks to be on his last legs; are you getting him in early to save time?”

“I’ll have you know madam that I am as fit as a fiddle!” said Greg, all indignant and puffed out chest.

“Look, we usually only see the dead here, with the occasional relative. Five travellers are not what we would expect in a Charnel House. I hope you’re not looking for a room for the night as we only have marble slabs for the Stiffs and some old mattresses for the Gremlins.”

Peter had been looking intently into the eyes of the beauty. He was a hopeless romantic, falling in love at the drop of a hat; or the drop of a pair of knickers. This girl attracted him instantly. Mind you Greg and Steve also had the hots for her as she was some babe; Bogey was wondering if he could scare her in some way.

Hanny felt the heat rising in her male companions. This could be good for her, a way of slowly getting rid of Peters’ attention; though she was unsure if that was the way she wanted life to go –‘Am I in love? I must be in love’.

“Let me introduce you to these vagabonds: My name is Hanny, this is Peter, Greg, Steve and Bogey. We’re on a Quest and really could do with somewhere to kip and a bite to eat. I’d prefer sleeping with the Dead rather than have to share with the Gremlins as something would be bound to go wrong.”

“Forgive me,” said their erstwhile hostess. “You caught me unawares. This is the Charnel House of Fat Larry. Larry isn’t here at the moment as he had to pop across to his workshop to fix a broom that one of the Gremlins broke. He always seems to have things to fix when dead bodies arrive; never mind. I’m his assistant; my name is Mrs. White.”

“That’s rather formal isn’t it?”

“Some people call me Snow, but for business purposes I prefer Mrs. White.”

Greg beamed. “I thought I recognised you. Weren’t you the Housekeeper for a group of Dwarf Miners, up near the Black Mountains?”

“That was me in a former life. And?”

“What happened to the Dwarfs?”

“They wanted to try seven–up but I wasn’t too keen. They mostly met pretty girly Dwarfs and got married. Then when they set up their own homes there wasn’t a job for good old Snow White anymore!”

“I heard you got married!”the-garden-of-earthly-delights-by-hieronymus-bosch-1

“I did. Then that twat Prince Charming only goes off in search of another great deed, meets some large breasted blond bird and fucks off with her, leaving me all on my own to try and put my life back together! And all I had on my CV was being an outcast who looked after seven miniature degenerates. Not good for job prospects.”

“Ouch! That must have hurt!”

“Hurt! The embarrassment! Even Adam and his Ants couldn’t console my grief. I’d been dumped in the woods to die but took on the job of looking after seven Dwarfs who, I have to admit, were not the best at personal hygiene. You should see the state of their underpants when they finally decide to change them. Now that is an ouch! Three or four weeks of Dwarfy skidmarks is not what this girl wanted to deal with. However I persevered. I turned their bachelor shit hole into quite a nice little place to entertain guests. This is when they all started courting, pulling birds left, right and centre. Except for Dopey of course; he couldn’t pull a bird if she lap danced naked across his bed; he couldn’t even pull a mussel on the sea bed. Personally think Dopey might well be totally asexual, but that’s another story. Anyway the long and short of it was six weddings and a remedial.”

“So what happened to Dopey?”

“Oh, he’s working here with the Gremlins. All those years of mining didn’t go to waste; he’s the chief gravedigger now!”

“And Charming?”

“No he’s not charming. How can an asexual, grave digging Dwarf be charming?”

“No, I meant what about Prince Charming?”

“I told you, he ran off with some cheap slut that mucks out kitchens and fireplaces. I ask you, how could anyone be so cruel? And I’m still waiting for the photographs from the wedding – delayed somewhere in the ether. Never mind; someday my Prints will come.”

Peter considered this Question deeply. He knew Big Bad Regan could be that cruel and worse, but it was unlikely that Regan would ever run off with another woman, not unless he intended eating her. To abandon such a swinging babe as Snow White a man would have to be totally nuts.

“He must be a gimp!” declared Peter, “to leave a sharp looking thing like your good self. Are there any other guys chasing your tail at the moment?”

This last comment led to a swift slap across the back of his head accompanied by a mind-your-own-business.

The Dopey one suddenly appeared. He could see that Peter was no doubt suffering the joys of another anal upsurge, too much magic in his Jacksy preventing him from rational behaviour. At the same time the gang were getting tired and hungry and it was possible they would all be feeling grumpy soon.

“That’s not likely,” said Snow White, “as Grumpy is now married and lives many miles from here.”

Food and beds were negotiated, the boys opting to sleep with the Gremlins and Hanny electing a marble slab in amongst the corpses.  Peter cheekily asked if there was a chance of a bed in the same room as Mrs. White, only to receive yet another cranial rocket.

They sat eating a chilled supper as Fat Larry returned from fixing the broom. His appearance struck them all as unusual. It was as though Larry had taken all of the elements of as many mythical beings as possible and combined them into one portly lump. He wore the Green pointy hat and little jacket that marked him out as a Pixy, yet both were straining due to the bulk of his body. This was in itself unusual as Pixies rarely get tubby. He also sported a beard, an affectation more often than not associated with Dwarfs or Gnomes. He spoke with a sort of posh Fairy accent, like a scouser from the Wirral. To top it all off he waxed lyrical on the joys of running a Charnel House.

“It is really nice to get the dead well dressed and into the ground as efficiently as possible. The relatives really appreciate the effort that Mrs White and the Gremlins put into the process. It gives me great joy when someone actually attends an internment. Deep fun. The only difficulty is keeping the Gremlins under control the rest of the time. It’s not as though we can give them jobs to do around the House; you can’t exactly ask a Gremlin to fix something. And they just can’t keep their area clean. It’s always a mess, as though the Gods of Chaos were embodied in them.”

“But surely that is a definition of a Gremlin,” stated Bogey, “a living example of the Third Law of Thermodynamics. Chaos personified. Entropy in living form. A messy little scumbag. Gremlins are exactly what it says on the label, you just have to let them be.”

“Let them be what?” asked the slightly confused proprietor of the dead.

“Let them be trouble in paradise! Let them be chocolate stains on a white jacket! Let them be a broken starter motor in a new sports car! Let them be what nature intended!”

“But if I do that we may well end up with the corpses stored on the ceiling or out in the cludgie!”

“That’s just the way it is!”

“That what must it be!” said Greg, getting confused in the heat of the argument.

Mrs White smiled. It was fun to have these folks around for the evening. Fat Larry could be a tiresome bastard, even for an abandoned and dumped chick like her. So it was nice to see him having to debate his position. Fat Larry carried a good degree of pomposity in his knapsack, always being ready to lecture the Gremlins and Mrs White on the rights and wrongs of getting a cadaver tucked away. Listening to him attempting to justify himself to what were his intellectual superiors made quite a change for the sweet singing legend. Besides, that Peter the Pixy was something of a hunk, despite the problem with his bottom.

Mrs White took charge of the sleeping arrangements that night. The Heroes of the Quest were bedded in the relevant places, Larry went to his cot, Dopey slept in a newly dug grave and the Gremlins went out of the back windows for a night on the town.

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Quotes from Pooh Bear

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My GF says I look like Pooh

  1. “You’re braver than you believe and stronger and smarter than you think.” 
  2. “Think it over, think it under.” 
  3. “Rivers know this: there is no hurry. We shall get there some day.” 
  4. “People say nothing is impossible, but I do nothing every day.” 
  5. “It is more fun to talk with someone who doesn’t use long, difficult words but rather short, easy words like “What about lunch?”
  6.  “Think, think, think.” 
  7. “The nicest thing about the rain is that it always stops. Eventually.” 
  8. “Could be worse. Not sure how, but it could be.” 
  9. “To the uneducated, an A is just three sticks.” 
  10. “Home is the comfiest place to be.” 
  11. “So perhaps the best thing to do is to stop writing introductions, and get on with the book.” 
  12. “I must go forward to where I have never been instead of backwards where I have.” 
  13. “One of the advantages of being disorganized is that one is always having surprising discoveries.” 
  14. “Life is a journey to be experienced, not a problem to be solved.” 
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Writing that book

Writing and creating and publishing … I’m working on it.

And teaching it…

http://www.internetbusinessschool.com/a/11024/jL3Zjyv9

cover 1

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26. For whom the Trolls Bell.

I suppose it was an artful escape. Hanny at her peak; though Peter would have preferred a peak at Hanny. He was so far out on the relationship now.

He knew he owed her his life but could not be sure what she might want in return. If she demanded undying love he had it ready in a package to hand over lock, stock and barrel. If she demanded a new pair of shoes from the latest catalogue she could have them; a copy of the latest novel by Harry and The Krishnas could be hers; perfection and understanding of the opposite sex – well he’d try. If there was anything else he could give her would let her have it. If he found two pots of gold he knew he would definitely give her one.

Uncertainty sat on his shoulders like a bare bellied buddha.

The bum pangs screamed through his brain like a thousand railroad trains, only to be calmed by an uncontrollable mysterious force. Spenser, the Fairy Queen of old had miscalculated. He regretted having that tart as it had blown his life away. Yet without it he would most likely never met Hanny.

“I do love you Hanny,” he said.cover 1

“I think I love you too,” confessed Hanny, “but at the moment I can only find the time to sort you out. There is not enough time to love you properly.”

“Could you love me long time?”

The gang of four were way off their allotted task. They had wandered far to the east, and now needed some guidance to help them find the fabled Lake. Steve decided to cheer them up with a little ditty.

“Too far to go! Too far to go! Too far! Too far! Too far to go!” he sang.

“Well that’s cheered us up!”

A voice cried out in the wilderness.

“Who the fuck is trying to be cheerful in the arse end of the world?”

The four intrepid explorers looked at each other as if to ascertain who had come out with the last sentence.

“It wasn’t me!” they chorused, producing a very sexy harmony that, if the chance had been right, could have propelled them to the top of the Hit Parade. Alas pop pickers it was not to be.

Ahead lay what could have been called a bridge but really it was just a few planks that spanned a minor rivulet; well a drainage ditch really. From under the bridge emerged a Troll, though a very emaciated one at that. The skinny Troll approached our heroes in an almost aggressive manner.

“Fol de Roll! I’m a Troll!” he declared, “but I couldn’t give a shit about that just now. Have any of you dudes got some grub?”

This remnant of an earthbound child’s nightmare turned out to be a long lost relative of the famous Gusset.

“My name is Bogart but most folk just call me Bogey,” he said.

They examined the wraith like apparition. Long straggly hair swept across an emaciated body; fingernails filled with detritus, no doubt scraped from a rats arse. Across his back were three protrusions; humps even.

The Troll could tell they were a little startled by the lumps on his back.

“Yes I’m Hump Three Bogart – wanna make something of it?”uranus-rings-by-david-a-hardy

Steve tried to imagine making a model of the Taj Mahal from the three humps but to no avail.

“I was exiled to this bridge like structure because of my family links with the revolution. Gusset was expunged from History and it’s only a few Bogeys like me that try to keep the Trolletariat together. Not that I should let a Fairy know this sort of thing. If I say too much I may have to kill you!”

“You’ll have me to deal with first!” declared Peter.

“Yes and I’m scared!” laughed the thin Troll.

They fed the famished Troll what they could spare, which turned out to be nearly everything as he was a hungry bastard. Bogey explained that such an isolated location didn’t attract many visitors so the chance of frightening them away and stealing their food was very thin, like him.

They fell into conversation about the revolution, the Quest and the dirty doings of Chalfont. Hanny was stunned to find she had so much in common with the scrawny Troll, particularly a very large bottle of dislike for Lord Chalfont.

“He’s a cunt!” spat the Troll.

There was no disagreement from the crowd of four.

Bogey was intrigued by the Quest. He argued that if there was a fabled Lake then there was likely to be rivers feeding it. Where there were rivers there would be bridges, and with bridges would come a new location for his scaring.

“I think I’ll live on the bridge and charge a living wage for people to cross. I’ll give up being a scary Troll and just get more blatant. I’ll be a toll Troll. Or as they say in France ‘Troll de Toll’.”

Nobody bothered to ask him how he knew about France, or even how he seemed to have some semblance of the French Language. It can be assumed the French get everywhere and underline all aspects of liberty and brotherliness; after all how can anyone ever have liberty and equality?

So they would be five again, allowing for different harmonics in the interactions. As they moved forward on the Quest there would have to be more singing, dancing and all sorts of shennaniganic librettos. They could investigate their symphonic unions with the latest electronic gizmos, though now they were a five piece they’d have to dismiss Fourier analysis. Perhaps they should wait for a sign wave. Or it would come to pass there would be a fork in the road – hopefully a tuning fork.

At this point Hanny declared we should just get on with the story.

HieronymusBosch-473265

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Reflections on words

I was going to start with ‘mirror’ but that is just a bad Physicists joke and I am a bad Physicist.

When working through chapter 24 tonight and had to look up quite a few words. I love Google – I still remember sitting at home with an Oxford dictionary, a dictionary of etymology and Roget’s thesaurus, spending hours on a word or phrase, attempting to make it as funny as possible.

Today’s haul included Beagle, Beadle, Fox, Junoesque, Charming, cunning, prepossessing, glow-worm or glowworm or glow worm, psychotic, Goth, Visigoth, obfustication and prorogue.cover 1

I also invented a new word for female Orc – Forc. I bet someone has used it before!

At this rate I will finish editing ‘Strange Things from Uranus‘ and can carry on with ‘Trans-Uranic Elements: The Dark Side of Uranus‘  and ‘Fairy Hanny and the sons of Turenn.

Maybe then I can get on with my Inspector Flaange novels…

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