As the good folks over on that twitter have reminded me, it’s time to shout about the fings wot I had published this year.
Just the two short stories this year, but I’m very proud of both so…
‘Rapture on the Lonely Shore’ appeared in The Fox Spirit Book of Love
About: mermaids, nuns, and the sweet music they make… [Ace protag, platonic wlw, historic fantasy]
At night the mermaids sing.
Their voices echo clear and ethereal over the gentle hushing of the waves, rising into the air in a chorus that easily surpasses the daylight efforts of the Abbey choir.
I am not the only one to haunt the tiny windows that look out on mermaid-speckled water. Nor am I the only one drawn down the stairs and out into the cooling night, and onwards to the low wall that guards the gardens from the cliff edge.
Novice Morwen joins her voice to theirs, singing a fisherman’s shanty in a clear, almost taunting voice. Laughter rises up from the sea and first one then two then three mermaids join her bawdier tune, the rest holding true to their notes in a blending of one sea song to the other.
I wonder how she dares challenge them so, why she doesn’t fear ending their music with her intrusion, but then Novice Morwen was born and raised on Asenora’s Isle, so perhaps she understands their ways enough to risk what we mainlanders would never dream of.
I glance at the other nuns lined up beside me, expecting disapproval at such heathen ways but all are calm, smiling, almost approving of the spectacle, and near one of the wych elms I think I can even see Abbess Wenna nodding along to the song.
For the first time since joining the sisterhood, I begin to feel I might belong.
And for the horror fans….
‘Songs in the Dark’ appeared in The Alchemy Press Book of Horrors 3: A Miscellany of Monsters
About: mermaid revenge and a new wife dealing with the consequences of her smuggler husband’s mistakes… [wlw, historic horror, dark fantasy, gothic horror if you squint]
“Who have you brought me?” the mermaid asks. She is pale as a wraith, with a mass of lanky seaweed-like hair draped down her head and scales that glint silvery in the lantern light. As she floats in front of us there seems to be something of the snake about her movements. I glimpse curved fangs in her mouth, and I wonder if they are as small as they look or if, like the cobra, their true size will only be revealed when she opens her jaws wide enough to feed.
And I wonder how Pedrick can stand to do business with such a thing as her.
Happy reading! x