Into the Dark Forest

F8IX8796HF

I have to confess something: 2017 was the year of distractions (as you can see by the lack of posts on this site). I put my novel on hold and I stopped working on The Tales of the Seelie Court. But I still kept writing and I wrote this short story called Into the Dark Forest, which features my favorite magical creatures: faeries! The characters and places and this story are not related to my other works about faeries, but I dare say it is still a magical, little piece of writing. Enjoy! 


 

Into the Dark Forest

 

It was that time of the year when the trees wore their most colorful dresses and the air chilled when the sun set. But while the sun was still up, the weather was warm and the world bathed in a golden glow. In that time of the year, the outside became Hayes’s favorite place on earth.

On one of those golden days, Hayes fled to one of the parks to escape his chaotic home. No matter how much he loved all his brothers and sisters, sometimes he longed for a short break. Here, everything was peaceful, and he could rest his back against the bark of a tree, his long, lanky legs stretched out over the foliage that covered the ground.

He kept his eyes closed so all that he could see of the world around him was the light filtering through his eyelids. He could tell that most people had already left. Apart from the occasional laughter and the rustle of the foliage as people walked through it, it was only the sounds of nature that he could hear. Birds chirping, wind shaking the leaves, and somewhere in the distance the low rumble of the afternoon traffic.

When Hayes opened his eyes again, he noticed someone who he’d never seen in this park before. It was a boy, about his age, but the complete opposite of what scrawny, dark-skinned Hayes looked like; the boy was tall, muscular, and very pale, with fair hair and a face that looked as though it was cut from white marble. Hayes was immediately struck by his extraordinary appearance and intrigued by the way he moved. The strange boy was barefooted and barely made any noise as he prowled through the park. He seemed frantic, as though he was looking for something.

Hayes sat up straight, his eyes now following the boy’s every step. The boy walked up to a tree, examined it, then shook his head and walked on. The more Hayes watched the boy, the more peculiar he appeared. His clothes were odd, too. He wore something that looked like a golden breast plate over his shirt.

Finally, the boy stopped in front of one of the largest trees in the park. He examined the bark closely, running both hands over it. Then, with a jolt, he reached up for the lowest branch and pulled it down.

Continue reading “Into the Dark Forest”

Advertisements

Colors

pexels-photo-91413

This is a short piece of about 1000 words that I wrote more than a year ago. It is also the only piece of creative writing I ever did in the course of my studies at the University of Vienna (which, to be honest, is a shame). Our professor asked us to pick a song and transform it into a story. Back then, I had “Colors” by Halsey stuck in my head. I loved the lyrics and the melody and both gave me a clear picture of what kind of story I wanted to write. Please find the story below! 


 

Colors

Dim afternoon sunlight trickled through the cracked shutters, casting bright spots on the bed. He was lying on his back, head resting on a tattered pillow. I let my eyes drift over his bare chest, pale skin stretched over jutting bones and ribs. His jawline was dotted with black stubble.

“I’m sure he loves you. After all, he’s your brother,” I told him as I snatched the half-finished joint from his fingers.

He watched me take a drag and exhale the smoke into the air. We hadn’t opened a window in hours and it was beginning to smell badly, a mixture of weed and used bedsheets.

He scratched his chin. “My family was never the loving kind. Mother was only interested in her career. I doubt she ever realized there was a life waiting for her behind the cameras.”

I lifted the joint to my lips a second time, but he yanked it out of my hand, placing it between his own lips. He inhaled deeply, filling his body with the substance. In these short moments, when his entire being was soothed by the drug, he looked completely blissful. Broken as he was, there was still beauty in him. His eyes, even though red-rimmed, were a clear blue, like one of those marbles that I had collected as a child.

“You’re staring at me again,” he said.

Continue reading “Colors”

Flash Fiction 2018 – February

After a minor delay of only a couple of months, I can finally post this little piece of work. Even though I did write it in February, it took me until today to gather all my strength to finalize it. You know, writing a story can be so easy, the hard part is editing. Again I had help in the form of feedback provided by my lovely writers group. Please check out Jack’s and MT’s monthly flash fiction (click on the names to follow the links). And please find mine below. Enjoy!


Flash Fiction #02: F for Fedora

 

He would’ve wanted me to have it

I storm inside once the door opens.

“Where is it?”

My sister raises an eyebrow at me, softly closing the front door again. “Will you stop yelling? The kids are asleep.” She talks in the same hushed voice she’s adopted ever since the birth of her twins.

It drives me nuts. Even more so now. My hands clutch the handle of my bag. “Where is it?” I ask, my voice trembling. I don’t allow the tears to flow.

“Dana, what are you talking about?” My sister has one hand on her hip, her eyes judging me as they have had for years.

I grit my teeth. “His hat,” I say. “H-He would’ve wanted me to have it.”

My sister sighs and vanishes down the hall. When she returns she’s holding an old, tattered fedora.

Even among a thousand hats like that one, I would recognize my father’s. Nothing’s more familiar to me than all the stitches on that hat trying to hold it together.

“I just don’t get why you would make such a fuss about a dusty hat!” My sister hands it to me and I clutch it to my chest.

I cradle the hat like a baby. It still smells like him, musky and warm.

“You never understood.” I shoot my sister one last glare. Then I open the front door myself, step out and shut it with a bang.

Upstairs, the babies start crying.

Flash Fiction 2018 – January

For almost three years now, I have been part of the best writers group in the world: The Baked Potatoes. You might not have heard of them yet, but you will 😉 My fellow writers and friends Jack, Kathi, MT & Stef accompany me on that otherwise lonely road to become a successful writer.

Last year was a bit of a low for all of us (as you can see in the lack of blog posts). But this year we kicked off with lots of motivation. My friend MT had the genius idea that each of us writes a little piece of Flash Fiction each month. And each month we would choose a topic beginning with the same letter as that month.

Flash Fiction is super short. We agreed on a word range between 150-300 words. You can find my January piece below.  Also check out the entries by my friends Jack and MT!


Flash Fiction #01: J for Jealousy

 

I won’t be needing it where I am going

I stare out of the window and watch as they drive off in a fancy BMW. They are soon swallowed by the thick fog, heading back into the city. I grit my teeth.

They were selling my flat, they said. Because my stay here was too expensive, they said. But what they really meant was that I wasn’t going to need the flat anymore.

I wasn’t going home ever again.

Wrapping my arms tighter around my shivering body, I mutter words under my breath that I wasn’t allowed to say earlier.

“Ms. Patterson.” One of the nurses approaches me. “Would you like me to accompany you back to your room?”

“I’m good.” I turn away from the window. Maybe the fog will do me a favor and will hide an oncoming car that can smash that stupid BMW off the road.

My footsteps sound hollow on the linoleum floor as I walk down the bleak corridor.

They can keep my stupid BMW. And they can sell my stupid place. I couldn’t care less.

I step into my bleak room which has no curtains, no flowers, no pictures. It is hideous. When I lock the door behind me, a nurse immediately knocks onto it. They don’t like it when we do that. Go figure why they even put a lock on there.

“Ms. Patterson, please unlock the door!”

“Tell them that they can keep my stupid dog too!” I pull a vial out of my robe. There is a single white pill in it. My hands tremble as I unscrew the lid and take out the pill. “I won’t be needing it where I am going.”

It’s all gone now.

For all time

Here’s a little something that I wrote a while ago – I tried myself on some short fiction, free of any magical beings!

For all time

I met Roy shortly after waking up in hospital.

One late afternoon, after my family had left on my doctor’s order, I took a walk through the bleak corridors. My legs were still weak and one of the nurses offered me a wheelchair, but I refused. I fought my way to the common room, where I saw him standing on the balcony, smoking a cigarette.

Although it was a cold, rainy November day he was dressed in nothing more than a short-sleeved shirt and a pair of jeans. He wasn’t wearing any shoes either. He was tall and slender, his dark-brown hair ruffled by the wind, and I thought how beautiful and indestructible he seemed. Continue reading “For all time”

Broken Bonds – out NOW!

Broken Bonds, the second story in Tales of the Seelie Court, is now available on Amazon.

In this second installment of Tales of the Seelie Court young Siân is faced with the consequences of the King’s Battle. Together with her mother she is sent to Blackpond to aid the pookas, but they are ready to sever their bond with the faeries. As Siân’s world threatens to fall apart, she finds comfort in the arms of the pooka Ifor.

You can get it here.

BrokenBonds3.jpg

Broken Bonds – Snippet #1

The second installment in Tales of the Seelie Court will be released in July. It is called “Broken Bonds” and features Siân, a young Healer of the Court, whose heart is thrown into a turmoil after an incident at Blackpond.

Read a sneak peek below:


 

“I have called for you at this early hour, my child,” she said, “out of joy and despair.” She placed a warm hand on Siân’s shoulder.
Siân looked up at her mother, Siobhan, and shivered at the fear in her otherwise bright, blue eyes.
“The events of the King’s Battle have changed our people,” Siobhan continued. “Losing our beloved King Arawn and many more of our companions has left a scar on our souls that not even time can heal. Queen Ophira has been burdened with a task no one so young should have to bear. And while we are mourning, our enemy is out there preparing to retaliate.”

The King’s Daughters – OUT NOW!

I am so excited to announce that the first installment of Tales of the Seelie Court is out on Amazon. Read a preview here or buy it here.

In this first part of a series of magical tales about the Fair Folk, the Faerie King of Tír na nÓg is caught in a battle between his two warring daughters, Titania and Ophira. As one strives to bring down her father, the other is plotting her revenge against her scheming sister. The king now has a fateful decision to make because he can’t save them both.

 

Sarah1

 

The King’s Daughters – Snippet #2

“The King’s Daughters” is the first installment in Tales of the Seelie Court and will be released THIS month. Below is another snippet of the story. Enjoy!


 

The king followed the path a little bit more until it made a slight turn to the left and descended. A few feet down, in a hollow, stood a tall oak tree. He sank to his knees in front of it and extended a hand to gently trace a finger along the engraving on the stone.

Eyela. Faerie Queen. Loving mother.

Every night since her death, he had taken a walk down to her grave, but never before had it hurt him so much. The recent events weighed heavily on him and dragged him down even further at the thought of his dead wife. Once more he was filled with despair and, above all, remorse.

He pressed his palm onto the cold stone beside her name. “My love, if only you were here.”

 

 

The King’s Daughters – Snippet #1

Welcome to this very first post of mine 🙂 I’ve known for more than ten years that I wanted to be writer, but finding the right story to start out with was difficult. I’ve recently discovered the exciting world of Irish Fairy and Folk Tales and it inspired me so much that I decided that I wanted to write stories about faeries. So I embarked on the journey of writing my first short story (in English, I have written some in German before, but they are the worst, let’s hope no one ever finds them!). It will still take some time for the story to be finished, but I will start you off with a little sneak peek. Enjoy! 


 

In the faraway land of Tír na nÓg, where the weather was always bright, the flowers bloomed endlessly, and the water sprouted  plentiful from wells, there lived a hidden people. They were faeries; tall, human-like creatures with unearthly beautiful faces and pointed ears. Their beauty never wilted; in Annwn, time stood still.

The faeries were ruled by a Faerie King who had two gorgeous daughters that were his pride and joy, the essence of his being. He would’ve given his life for them, more than he would’ve ever given it for his people. If ever he were to lose his daughters, he would be heartbroken.