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Victoria Desperado's Mansion of Despair

Her boldness blinded her, and she paid the full price.

About 1900 words   Victoria Desperado's Mansion of Despair by James Foley   In Annapolis, Maryland, Andy Bannock stood on a sixty-four-foot ketch, watching the night get wetter and wilder. He was under contract to move this boat to Baltimore before tomorrow noon. And Andy's one-man crew, Michael Ward, had retired. Actually, Roger Wang, Andy's partner in their yacht delivery business,...Read On

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Epitaph

I have walked the path of the ancient ones. Each step made me stronger. Wiser. Fearless. I don’t suffer the antics of fools. Nor do I tolerate the pretense of substance. Heavy is the granite of my principals. Cracked by forces meant to weaken me. Wedges are afforded to few family and friends. Flexible to blood and love. Yet firm in my resolve to stay the course. The ancient ones...Read On

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Wolf

I saw you. I saw all of you. Walking in the sunlight. Without cover. As if you were immune to harm. Believing that bad things only happen to others. All the while from the shadows danger lurks. Lying just behind the line between light and dark. Where I am. Waiting. The shadows are my home. The night is my friend. While others sleep impervious to thoughts of threat, I survive in...Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 38

Olivia ran down the stairs. Her vague suspicions had coalesced, the message from her dreams loud and clear. With a quick glance to check that nobody was about, she pulled herself into human form and grabbed her coat. Draping it across her shoulders, the briefest sop to modesty, she sprinted barefoot out onto the grass, her breath clouding before her face in the dark, her skin burning...Read On

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The origins of Rahab's Red Book

How the Red Book was written

Getting the contents of the Red Book back to London was exciting, as it gave the experts at the British Library a chance to order them. There were ten volumes in all. The leaves had been bound in red Spanish leather, and to judge by the state of the bindings, had hardly been read. The curators said it was likely they had been bound after each section had been written and then put away by...Read On

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Standing Strong

Strength like the mighty oak tree There he stands For all to see Standing tall and strong Firm hands to hold Love in his laughter Compassion in his eye From dawn to dusk And back again Nerver changing  He never fails Standing firm for all to see He bends with the wind But never breaks Tall and strong Sharing the power  Watching over little ole me                    ...Read On

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The Diary Of The Forgotten Child

Another day in paradise, I woke up to sky’s of grey, unusual, as the weather seemed unforgiving these past few days, guess this was our day off. A calm breeze creeps through the cracks of my walls, almost greeting me with an enthusiastic grin, as though to say with a chipper demeanor,  “Have a nice day”. As I make my way out, the sun’s presence is made known, the clouds, though shielding...Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 37

The turning of the moon marked time. Olivia didn't return to Peter's Cross until the autumn, and even then she did so reluctantly, skirting around the graveyard so she could walk up to the vicarage by road, considering it well worth the extra shoe leather if it kept her out of sight of Eli and Verity. Her dread at the thought of unpreparedly running into Eli had obvious roots, crossing his...Read On

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Kindred Spirits, Distant Hearts. Chapter 25

He stopped when Katarina put her hand up. “I can't hear you,” she said...

Tripoli. February 03rd 1942   Since having heard the conversation about the counter-offensive, Katarina was once more hopeful that all was not lost. She hadn't heard a single word about Benghazi since Christmas eve, however, more than a month ago and as she considered all the possibilities, her heart once again became heavy with fear. Not even a year had passed since she and her...Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 36

Lost in miserable contemplation, Olivia had no concept of how far the journey took her. High hedges and the grasping bare branches of trees lined the lanes, all alike. Once in a while, signs of habitation loomed and passed, clustered cottages or solitary houses on long stretches of empty road. White signposts marked placenames that Olivia only half-knew, and Grace had fallen...Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 35

Putting on her coat, feeling for the reassurance of the small slip of paper in her pocket, Olivia walked out into the early twilight and down to the phone box. She could only pray that Grace might still be with her friends, and she breathed a sigh of relief when the cheery voice on the other end of the line told her to wait just a minute. "What happened to you?" said Grace, skipping...Read On

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Recommended Read

The Hotline

Do the tattoo. If you need to. 1-800-273-8255

 

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Black Dog - Chapter 34

Olivia woke with her cheek pressed against cold hard earth, painfully aware of every bone inside her flesh, the awkward arrangement of jaw and skull bones, string of aching vertebrae, arm and leg bones loose at the joints. She decided against standing up just yet. Fragments of last night's memory slotted into place. The bright round moon, Eli, tall sharp-scented pines. This morning...Read On

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Granny's Stories

Short, easy stories to read for those who have trouble reading

Up and Down The blue sky is up. The brown ground is down. The sun is up in the blue sky. The green grass is down in the ground. The moon is up in the dark sky. The yellow flower is down in the ground. Look up! Look down!   Hole in Her Pants Dora has a hole in her pants. The hole is at her knee. Dora also has a scratch on her knee. Dora was running and fell down. Granny...Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 33

Imogen knew she had to take some of the blame. Eli had returned to the village to see her , but she'd soon grown jealous when he spent so much time with that pretty girl in perpetual mourning black. If Imogen was honest with herself, she'd jumped at the chance to share a hurtful piece of gossip about that pretty young thing. She hadn't known what Eli would do but the girl had deserved it....Read On

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Rahab's Red Book

A discovery in an Attic

During a visit to Istanbul, I had occasion to meet a colleague in an old Ottoman era town house near the Hagia Sophia, the great Basilica built by the emperor Justinan the Great in the sixth century of the Christian era. She was a member of the Maronite Christian community from Syria, and worked, undercover, for Mossad, the Israeli Secret Service. Elena, the old woman who owned the house and...Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 32

Olivia came home much later than she'd intended, surprised to see lights in the windows. She ran up the path to the front door, splashing in the puddles, singing cheerfully to herself as she hung up her wet coat in the hallway. It had occurred to her that Reverend Milton might not be much help if all he did was talk and Verity refused to listen, so straight after work she'd met with Grace at...Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 31

It had taken Imogen about half an hour to make up her mind to tell Eli what she'd heard, longer to find him, and even longer to wait while he went to confirm for himself what she already knew. Typical man, couldn't take a woman's word for anything. Rather than argue with him, she occupied herself indoors. Since she couldn't imagine herself on speaking terms with Verity any time in...Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 30

Verity came storming out of the kitchen, and Imogen melted into the darkness behind the door, breathless and silent. Unseen, she watched Verity stomp off up to the attic and Olivia climb wearily back to bed. Too weak to stand, Imogen sat down on the floor of the hallway. Verity had everything : youth and beauty and a baby . A perfect healthy baby that she didn't even want, that she planned...Read On

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Youth Should Never Fade

Even though you may grow old still may you stay forever young

 

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So, you are very wealthy

I always believe if everyone does a bit good deed, bit by bit, we can make a harmonious world.

  A young man muttered at his bad luck and penniless situation.   He frowned all the days. A wise senior came across to talk to him, ‘Hey kiddy, why are you so unhappy?’ ‘I don’t understand why I’m so poor always!’ he said. ‘Poor ? I think you are very wealthy!’ the wise senior said sincerely. The young man was puzzled,  ‘Why are you talking like that?’ the wise senior asked. ...Read On

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The Spring Dance

I want to go with Rocky, not nerd boy

Study hall… last class of the day before what is supposed to be a relaxing weekend restoring another car he had just bought. However, the relaxing weekend would only happen if Jim finished his history report before the bell rang, and now that just did not seem possible. Jim had been sitting at a workstation in the back of study hall. He had an open book in front of him. It was still turned...Read On

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We Are Kandiskis - Chapter 1

This is the first chapter in a very long book I am writing.

“Oh, what the hell? What the freak just happened and why does it feel like I just got ran over by a bus?” saying out loud and holding my head trying hard to open my eyes and sit up. After what seemed like several minutes but was only seconds, my eyes opened and adjusted to the light. Not quite able to sit up yet, I lay on my back holding my head and try to look around. Something didn’t...Read On

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A Dent

I felt the coasting of my shadow, as I walked on the lawn a midday stroll. To my townhouse from whence I left my shadow, before it came to me. That ghost don't have shadows, if they are me. Just a coat of ectoplasm, reaching to the knee and a vocabulary of, "Boo." Then it dawned a sunrise, and I discovered I was a zombie with a dent. The kink was just a reflection where the bullet spent....Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 29

With the awful business of the full moon out of the way, a fortnight passed uneventfully. Olivia settled into her job at the library (with profuse apologies for her earlier absence) and continued work on the house. Still, thoughts of Giles's death tormented her. She should have gone to see him when Grace had asked. She could have made a difference. She lay in the dark, neither asleep nor...Read On

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Smothering The Parrot

I was doing my cups by "smothering the parrot" (sipping green absinthe) at The Haggis Inn. A drinkery on the planks of Aberdeen's warf by the North Sea. A cold air and visioning fog washed in by the tides, chilling my bones. The wetness of the gray seeping  into my brogans, robbing heat from soles of my feet, as fast as the wind stole frost from my nose. It was a parlor for the artsy and...Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 28

Olivia woke face down in the slush of dead brown leaves. The slats of grey light filtering through the bare trunks of the trees suggested mid-morning at that time of year. As she sat up, shivering, every muscle in her body stiff and aching, she realised with a sinking horror that she was naked but for a patchy covering of black mud. She had no memory of the night before beyond a few...Read On

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Black Dog - Chapter 27

As the full moon approached, the second tea party came and went, with Olivia putting in a perfunctory appearance. Grace had been absent, and Olivia had been preoccupied with her work on the house. She'd started the week with good intentions, picking up where she'd left off with her campaign against her wrecked bedroom. She'd already wrenched up the old carpet, aired out the unpleasant mix of...Read On

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The Fallen

Just a simple tribute.

Sitting in the church pew lost in thought, listening to the Veteran speak of his friends that had gone before him. My mind wanders back to a simple time of Flags, parades, and trips to the cemetery. Every year my little sister and I would save our weekly allowance to buy tiny American flags for Memorial Day. We worked hard earning that money but seem to come up short so our Granny...Read On

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Kindred Spirits, Distant hearts. Chapter 24,

...he just rolled his eyes towards Maria. “She did it....” he croaked.

Benghazi. January 29 th 1942   Maria stared at the men who had crashed onto her ward so abruptly. The officer she remembered from the incident in the desert but the others were not the ones who had assaulted her and her medic. “Was passiert?” she asked nervously and then remembered they probably didn't understand. The sergeant looked blankly at her but the officer answered...Read On