Archive for September, 2014

I’m in the process of formatting my novel, “Secrets of Hawking Manor” for publishing as an eBook and hope to have it on Kindle, Kobo, Sony and many other outlets for downloading.  Formatting it for an eBook is an interesting task.  I’m learning how to do this as I go, and I hope I’ll be able to do the other five novels faster.

For your enjoyment a scene from the novel

“We will settle the accounts right here and now!” Eugene screamed.  “You will feel my sword generously in your belly.  Draw, you upstart!”  Eugene drew his sword and more swiftly than anyone suspected, he was in front of Benjamin who deftly jumped aside drawing his own sword while backing away from the angry former Dragoon.  “I should have plunged a dagger into your heart the night I threw you on board that ship,” Eugene heckled.  He charged several times, but was rebuffed by Benjamin’s skilled counters.

Still hoping to settle the account with Eugene peaceably, Benjamin kept reminding the charging man that he could have a good deal of money and be on his way to Liverpool where he preferred to be.  But Eugene’s anger did not abate.

“What kept me from throwing you overboard the Fortune Four I cannot tell, but I will right my mistake presently.”  Eugene lunged at Benjamin again.

“You did me a great favor that night, Eugene.  I found great riches in the new world.  My fortunes improved still more when my path crossed Charles Chambers there, who installed you here as a manager, to the estate’s detriment I might add.  He sold his inheritance to me.”  Lay down your weapon, Eugene.  You shall leave here with a tidy sum.  I shall not make you this offer again.  You may soon be taken by the crown for killing Christopher, a good man and my friend.  You will need some wherewithal for your defense.”  Benjamin made a quick charge at the man before backing up again hoping to see signs that his foe’s fierce anger lessened in intensity.

“You’ll rue having laid eyes on me this day, you young pup!”  Eugene laughed a wicked laugh and made tricky maneuvers to try to overpower Benjamin.  For a man who had been injured with life threatening wounds inflicted by Christopher and Henry’s shots, Eugene attacked the younger man with surprising strength, speed and imagination.

But the younger man was naturally athletic, quick and skilled.  He expertly avoided all of Eugene’s charges while staying on the defensive most of the time attacking only now and then to try to contain his opponent.  In time Benjamin became convinced that the older man was not going to be satisfied until he had wounded him.  He suddenly thrust forward with a quick maneuver, stepped deftly to the side making Eugene miss him with his counter strike.  Benjamin saw sweat form on his opponent’s forehead.  He attacked again quickly, fell back and somersaulted over the railing to the terrace.

Smiling he took a position at the top of the stairway to the terrace waiting for Eugene who lumbered up to engage him again.  “You could have been on your way to Liverpool Eugene with a satchel full of money,” he scorned him.  For a few more minutes Benjamin was satisfied to defend against Eugene’s charges and tease him with short attacks.  Suddenly he began to press the former Dragoon with swift, crafty and powerful strikes.  He danced and jumped and turned with such speed that Eugene anxiously retreated again and again.  Several times Benjamin had him at his mercy only to back off and let the older man recoup.

Beats of sweat rolled from Fairham’s brow.  He cursed and swore at Benjamin. His breathing had become more labored.  A false reaction by him to Benjamin’s faked thrust provided a new momentary opening for the younger man.  This time Benjamin’s sword drew blood from the horseman’s limp arm.  Increasing the pace and charging with creative and swift maneuvers to which Eugene reacted slowly followed.  The former Dragoon grimaced with pain.  The point of Benjamin’s sword had slashed deep into his thigh and had followed it up with cutting his ear grievously.

With an effortless spring Benjamin jumped to the railing of the stairway and smiled down at his opponent.  “I have so far only tickled you gently, Eugene.  Lay down your weapon.  I will not ask you again,” he said.

Eugene cursed.  He came at Benjamin limping and bleeding but swinging wildly.  “You shall feel my steel in your belly,” he shouted.  But so quickly did Benjamin feign a sideways spring that the horseman’s turn caused him to slip with one knee to the ground while Benjamin somersaulted to the terrace’s floor again and springing forwards to stand before his opponent.  Eugene realized too late what Benjamin’s intent had been.  He could only watch the young man’s sword come to touch his throat, remaining there while hearing him call out, “Guarde!”

In a rage, but fearing to have his throat sliced, Eugene dropped his sword.  “Have it your way, Carstairs!” he hissed and pretended to give himself up.  “I shall take your offer after all and be gone, only put up your sword,” he cried.

Henry saw Benjamin and Eugene dueling as he approached the entrance to Willowdowne Park.  His heart beat faster.  His horse’s mouth frothed, but he pressed the animal on harder still.  He marveled at Benjamin’s skill with the sword and his agile maneuvers.  He saw how he danced around his foe and made him miss time after time.  Henry was within earshot when Eugene dropped to his knees.  Fear ripping through him, he shouted to his brother to beware of a pistol in Eugene’s boot, but Benjamin did not hear him calling out.  In horror Henry watched his brother put up his own sword and turn away from Eugene.

The sound of a shot that followed drove icy panic into Henry’s heart.  Like in a horrid nightmare he saw Benjamin slowly sink to the ground.  Henry cried out with a great shout of rage. Mercilessly he kicked the heels of his boots into the flank of his animal.  His eyes spewed fiery darts at his former comrade.

Awkwardly Eugene rose and scoffed at his fallen foe on whose coat a crimson spot began to grow larger.  With a hateful laugh Eugene walked slowly to the fallen Benjamin.  He raised his pistol, coldly aiming it at the fallen Benjamin’s head.  “I will have great pleasure at snuffing out the light of a Carstairs this day,” he laughed wickedly and cocked his pistol.

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A redneck’s love poem

I have to share this poem that a brother-in-law sent to me. I can’t give credit to the author as no author was given. But the poem brought tears to me eyes, and I’d be selfish not to share it. Have a great day.

Susie Lee done fell in love.
She planned to marry Joe.
She was so happy ’bout it all
She told her Pappy so.

Pappy told her, “Susie gal,
You’ll have to find another.
I’d just as soon yo’ ma don’t know,
But Joe is your half brother.”

So Susie put aside her Joe
And planned to marry Will.
But after telling Pappy this,
He said,”There’s trouble still.”

You can’t marry Will, my gal,
And please don’t tell your mother,
But Will and Joe and several mo’
I know is yo’ half brother.

But Mama knew and said, “My child,
Just do what makes you happy.
Marry Will or marry Joe;
You ain’t no kin to Pappy.”



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