Tag: mystery

Not Unusual in Itself

Ryan didn’t believe it. That was not unusual in itself. There were a good many things Ryan didn’t believe in, such as astrology, healing crystals, ideologies, Gaia, religions, politics, ghosts, reality television, fate and several other things he was too busy not to believe in at the moment. However, he did believe in an external reality… until now. Ryan had always liked those stories; novels, films, TV programmes, that played around with reality, altering perceptions, questioning what is and what isn’t real. Are we all living inside some god’s dream, inside a computer programme? Is this a dream? Are we…

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The Mystery of the Disappearing Queen

‘You missed a good story in the inn last night.’ Helm shrugged. ‘I have little time for storytellers. They’re all liars.’ Tolg sat down beside the shepherd, both watching the sheep. ‘Oh, this storyteller is new. He hasn’t visited our village before.’ Helm muttered his thanks as Tolg passed him the wine bottle. Helm drank deep; watching sheep was a thirsty business. ‘Anyway,’ Tolg said. ‘This storyteller told us a new tale - about the Queen of Amboria.’ Helm stopped drinking. ‘Where?’ ‘Amboria.’ ‘Never heard of it.’ Helm swallowed, even though he was clutching the bottle in both hands where…

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The Hauntings

‘Come back,’ she said. I turned. There was no-one there. There never is. The voice comes at odd times with no real pattern or purpose. Like the visions of her, the mirages, the sightings – whatever you want to call them. They happen in various places both inside the house and outside it. I have seen her - and heard her - at different times and places from the attic rooms down to the cellar, along the remnants of the smugglers’ tunnel, as well as along the cliff and down on the beach. She speaks as if she knows I…

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A Real World Out There?

This world is not the world I remember. It has been some years, how many I do not know. But it goes beyond that. Changes over the time I’ve been away I could expect and understand. But this – these changes – go beyond mere alterations made by the passage of time. Something fundamental is different from this world to the one I left behind. It should be a matter of subtracting the year I left this world from the current one to give me an idea of how much time I lost while I was… away. But the calendar…

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No More Stories

It used to be so easy. I would find the women. I would discover their closely-guarded secret. Then I would weave a story around that one thing they desired more than anything else. I would tell them the story I’d made for them. They would show their gratitude, happy someone had come along into their lives and shown them something beyond their small world. It was easy travelling from village to village, making up stories to tell to those who needed to hear them. Being a mere storyteller meant that the outlaws ignored me, at least until they needed someone…

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Magic in the Air

‘There is,’ she said, ‘magic in the air.’ I looked up at her. I was lying in the bed, sheets thrown back. Giella was sitting up, naked, looking down at me with a serious expression on her face. ‘What?’ ‘I mean it.’ ‘Of course you do.’ I smiled. Ever since I’d arrived in the South Islands I’d heard people talking of magic, what it could do and who could do it. Of course, back in the Sun Empire we had people who claimed they could do magic, real magic that is not the conjuring tricks of the court entertainers. It…

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Not His Story

Jake stood back, a little to one side of the left-hand margin. It paid to be cautious these days. He studied the page carefully, ready for action if it was necessary. He risked taking a few steps closer. It looked like an ordinary paragraph from here. But these days stories started quite fast. That opening paragraph could contain anything from a poisonous letter in a non-descript envelope to a whole cadre of suicidal terrorists. Jake wasn’t fooled easily. It looked like an innocent paragraph, maybe even containing some scene-setting description. But you couldn’t be too careful. Jake was – as…

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Rural Policing

As any admirer of crime fiction will no doubt be aware, the English Rural landscape is often used as a background for murder mysteries and other such nefarious goings-on. However, the reality in places like Little Frigging is far more mundane, with our local Little Frigging village policeman, PC Ghonnemadd, rarely called upon to get his truncheon out in the course of his duties. Except, of course, when requested by one of the ladies of the village who feels herself in need of the strong arm of the law to help her overcome her current predicament, perhaps – for example…

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After It Is All Over

‘Come here,’ Daniel said, folding her into his strong arms. They kissed as the flames engulfed Doctor Blowhard’s secret island headquarters.   THE END   ‘You can let me go now.’ She struggled out of his arms. ‘The book is over.’ Stella Honeythighs took a step back, away from him. ‘But I thought-‘ ‘I know what you thought. I could feel it pressing into me.’ Daniel glanced down at his own crotch. ‘Sorry. Only you know how he wrote me.’ ‘Yes. I do. Have you been eating garlic?’ She wiped her mouth with the back of her hand. ‘It was…

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Coffee Time

My coffee had almost gone. I glanced up and out of the café window. The snow was still coming down. I’d have to go out there soon, into the snow, back to the office. I couldn’t be late again, not twice in one week. She dropped into the chair on the opposite side of my table, dripping melting snow onto the tabletop, snow and ice forming small pools in the warmth of the café. ‘I made it,’ she said pulling her cap from her hair and letting the red curls fall around her shoulders. I smiled back politely and looked…

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