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Monday, 4 June 2012

Sweet Dreams Story Snippets - Day 2

Day 2 of the story snippets from Sweet Dreams!

Snippet #1 - Leanne Fitzpatrick

Leanne is a twitter buddy of mine, and she volunteered Laid to Rest for the anthology. This is the first time I've seen Leanne's writing, and it blew me away. I can't wait to see more from this series!

Laid to Rest – A Cherry Garcia story
By Leanne Fitzpatrick

Do you know what sort of jobs I get roped into? Shit ones, that what. It's jobs like this that ruin my reputation for a smooth and sophisticated P.I and they are the reason I keep getting landed with the little jobs. The jobs more well established Monster Hunters find too tedious to bother with.
Other Monster Hunters go after demons and reneged wolf-men. Me? I get a haunted nursery teacher.
I don't even know how I ended up with this job.
Oh, wait... yes I do. Sarah. Bloody, bloody Sarah.
She always does this to me. I'll be sitting there, happily waiting for the big client to come through the door and what happens- someone comes in at their wits end because their grandmother refuses to move on and then tells them they're fixing up the grave-site wrong.
I don't know about you, but harpies that stick around once their remains have gone mushy are not my idea of a fun time.
Sarah seems to find it hilarious, which it why I am standing here in the freezing cold, shivering and waiting for the sun to stop sleeping. I do not like night time work. I am an evening person, and by evening I mean that I like to be at a bar having a fun time with my chums and eyeing up possible one night stands. Sarah does not seem to care about this. Have I mentioned recently that I hate Sarah?
   I hate Sarah.

A particularly cold gust of wind threatened to undo all the good work shivering had done me and I moved closer to the church. It stood right in the centre of the village, and would have been picturesque- if there hadn't been a shit-tonne of scaffolding around it.
The graveyard was exposed on the Northern side and there was a thick hedgerow separating it from the rest of the world.
“I thought the unholy burned up when they stepped on Hallowed Ground,” I heard Sarah say behind me. I glanced at her.
“They do,” I grumbled. “I can see the embers in your hair.”
She laughed and shook her head, the thick braid, whipping about behind her.
“Is Priest here yet?”
I shook my head.
“He didn't want to be here for the actual digging part. I believe he'll be here as soon as she is once more exposed to the world. Right before we burn the bones.”
Sarah shrugged. She didn't get on well with Priest for the most part. Something about him put her edge. She wouldn't tell me why.
“You got the salt and shovels?” I asked.
She nodded and unhooked a backpack from her shoulder.
“Bought some lighter fluid too, just in case she was too mushy to light up.”
“Awesome,” I sighed, grabbing the shovels propped against the church wall.  “Let's get this party started, shall we?”
I led the way, trudging down the overgrown pathway to the approximate middle of the graveyard. Ms Emmeline Wickham was located three graves from the end, between an over large tomb and a weeping angel.
When we got to her plot, her stone was a small, weather-worn affair, pitted and rounded by years of rain and wind. Her name was barely legible.
I stood staring at it for a while. We'd cremated my dad- he'd not wanted any chance of coming back to haunt us and sometimes I regretted that decision. There was nowhere for me to go when I needed to talk to him, no place I could focus my grief, just an ambient air of not-rightness.
He'd been so afraid of fire... even with his work, he never lost that fear...
I shook myself, letting the funk slide away. I was here to do a job and the sooner it was done the faster I could crawl into bed and snooze the day away.
I drove the shovel into the ground.

Snippet #2 - Mia Darien

Mia Darien writes both romance and paranormal suspense and her impressive collection of titles can be found on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Smashwords and Lulu. She lent Descent, a gorgeous tale based on Greek mythology, to the Sweet Dreams anthology.

By Mia Darien

            The goddess. Not she who is mother to the earth, but she who is earth mother. Her compassion gave the people the knowledge of growing and cultivating, how to survive off the earth’s bounty. Her anguish rent the world and shaded half the year in cold. She who held no fear to confront the god of death, to show her power to Mount Olympus itself, all to have her daughter Persephone back.
            She whose steps nourish the ground, so that people might live from it. A powerful ally, a powerful enemy.
            A powerful ancestor.
            This is what my mother, Cyrana, told me: that she was the issue of a brief coupling between Demeter and a mortal man. It was where, she said, our power came from. I never found reason to question the story, for power we did have. We had power that others did not, or if they did, they hid it very well and more than we cared to.
            The story that I shall tell took place in the twelve hundreds B.C. - twelve centuries before the birth of Christ.
            I lived near the Black Sea at that time, in a region known as Thrace. I was not born there, as far as I know, but my mother had never told me where I had been born. She was dead, my mother, by the time I lived in that place. I chose it because, at that time, I was devoted to Ares, the god of savage war and blood lust. The mountainous areas of Thrace, with its war-like people, were said to be most like him. It was also said that he had been born of that violent land.
            They did not call me witch then. In those days, I was simply Ioena.

That's all for today, folks. Swing by tomorrow for the final day of snippets before publishing.