I debated whether to write this blog post. I’m alway so late to the party when it comes to anything new, that there’s never any point trying to share something I discovered and loved. Inevitably, when I do everyone around me is all: ‘yes Celine, we’ve all known about this for months and we all love it. Have you been hiding under a rock all this time?’
The answer is generally that yes, yes I have.
So fair warning, you’re probably already going to know about this, but I’m ploughing on ahead anyway, since this is my blog and it has to be as uncool as I am.
You know how sometimes you speak to someone on the phone, say, and your mental image of them is entirely at odds with their face when you finally meet them? I had a major case of this the other day when I discovered a singer called George Ezra (the cool ones among you are welcome to roll your eyes if you’ve known about him since before he started playing music).
If you haven’t heard of him, do me a favour and listen to the first few beats of this song. Not much point listening to more than that since the music video is below (and it’s really funny so you’ll want to watch the whole thing).
You have a mental image right? Mine was a middle aged, overweight Jamaican man with a beard and a hat (I think it’s voice that sounds like it passes through a hefty amount of facial hair). Here’s the actual music video, including George Ezra. You’ll recognise the other man as the fabulous Ian McKellen (he’s how I got to the music video in the first place). Make sure you watch the whole thing, there’s a really amusing bit about two thirds of the way in.
Isn’t it a lovely video and song? It never fails to make me smile – especially when McKellen glances at the camera to add ‘McKellen’ when Ezra is having a go at him. I laugh. Every time. That cheeky glance gives me such delight that I’ve watched the video far more times than I care to admit to.
It occurs to me that this might be a sign that I’m getting old. No, not because I have early onset alzheimer’s and keep forgetting that I’ve already watched the video (thanks for the vote of confidence there guys), but rather because I have more interest in the fabulous McKellen than in the pretty blond with the dreamy voice sharing the screen with him.
Worse, when I recounted this to the Husb, I used the phrase ‘pretty young thing’ (to refer to Ezra, you understand. Even in my adulation of McKellen I wouldn’t go as far as to call him a pretty young thing). I’m literally a bad leopard print top away from being a cougar. Let’s face it, no one who uses the words ‘pretty young things’ is any of those words.
No, it’s safe to say that once you’ve started using the phrase ‘pretty young thing’, you’re past it. There is no way around it.
Time being as ineluctable as my ageing, it is Wednesday (again! I have a feeling I’ll be thinking that every week) so time for a snippet. I didn’t get around to visiting everyone last week, we had a guest in town, so I had less time for blogging than usual. I will do this week though! This week you get 22 paragraphs, because 10+12.
I’m introducing you to the other main character of the story, Rory. Last week’s WIPpet was just a random bit of dialogue as I was in a rush to get the post done to get things ready for guest arrival, but today you get to meet her for proper.
Rory congratulated herself on her timing. She and Jake had just reached the end of the lane and, peering around the corner, she could see the mark a few yards away. He was a trader with a swollen belly and a self-satisfied air. She could already tell how pleased with himself he would look when he stepped in to save the poor, scrawny urchin girl from a beating.
She counted down silently, with her fingers. Three, two, one.
Rory launched herself into the trader’s path with a shriek. Startled, the man jumped back just as Jake burst into the street, his face contorted into a perfectly fearsome mask. He grabbed Rory with his paddle sized hands, lifting her off the ground.
“Help!” she screamed, kicking her legs in the air, careful to miss Jake.
Jake drew back a meaty hand as though to strike her. She screeched again, waiting for the mark to react. Any moment now, he would step forward, his face a sneer, his rapier drawn and he would tell Jake to ‘let the girl go’.
Jake snarled, and raised his hand further behind him. Rory cowered in his grasp.
“Please not again, please no, please…” she gabbled.
The target stood aside, gawking, as though seagulls had pecked out his brains.
“Teach you to try and run away,” Jake grunted.
Rory had picked a dud.
Nothing for it, Jake was going to have to follow through and hit her or the game would be up.
Jake’s hand came down in a wide arc, just catching her cheek. Rory let her head snap to one side, howling out to make it seem more painful than it was. Still the merchant stood watching. She cursed under her breath. If he was going to be cowardly, the least he could do was leave and be cowardly somewhere else so they could end this charade.
Jake raised his hand again.
“Not so fast now.”
At last, the melodious sound of a rapier being pulled out of its scabbard. The trader pointed his blade at Jake.
“Put the girl down.”
“Not your godsdammned business,” Jake grunted.
“I’ve just made it my business. Put her down.”
Jake glowered ever so convincingly at the man, and let Rory drop to the ground. She made a show of collapsing onto the cobblestones, before scrambling up towards the trader.
Hope you enjoyed it!
If you want to take part, we all share snippets of our work every Wednesday, with the amount shared somehow related to the date (this is known as WIPpet maths. It’s far more fun than real maths). You can see who else is playing here, and as always thanks to K.L. Schwengel for hosting!