It was hard going, but I managed to get my 50,000 words in today! I am now an official NaNoWriMo winner! Yeah me! Now maybe things will get back to my normal. I can only hope.
I haven’t finished my novel of course. A novel is usually more then 50,000 words. I am actually between half and two-thirds done writing it. Also there will be a whole lot of editing to do! But I’m going to take it easy for a little while and concentrate on my blogs that I have neglected this past month!
I thought I might include in today’s post a another little snippet of my book. Hope you enjoy! Please remember it’s in very rough first draft!
Phillis ran towards Pal’s barking. She heard Malcolm a few steps behind her. The thought briefly went through her mind the for an old man Malcolm was pretty quick. She heard a man yelling and Pal barking and wondered what she would find.
It was dark, but there was enough light from the few garden lights to see Pal had a strange man cornered up a tree. Phillis slowed to a walk when she got close. She didn’t think the man was armed or he would have taken a shot at Pal.
“Pal! Come!” Phillis yelled. A few seconds later a panting and proud Pal came trotting up to her. She patted his head and looked up the tree. What she saw almost made her laugh out loud. There was a strangely dressed man sitting on a limb and hanging on the truck of a large Oak tree with both arms.
To Phillis he almost looked like a leprechaun. Except he wasn’t dressed in green. But he had on a brown coat with wide lapels, with a white shirt peeping out the top around his throat. His pants looked like tweed and were the same brown as his coat. On top of his head he had on a small bowler hat the was sitting crooked at the moment. He had a worn leather satchel hooked over one shoulder and laying against his side.
The man’s black booted feet were hanging in mid air just out of reach. He peered down at Phillis and Pal with wide brown eyes. He had a wrinkled face like the bark of the oak tree that he was hugging. Phillis smiled and thought he looked like a small wizened brown leprechaun.
Malcolm came up to Phillis and looked up the tree also. In his hand he carried a serious looking gun. Phillis frowned at him, “Put that thing away Malcolm.”
“We don’t know if he’s friendly or not. Not after the other night, we shouldn’t take any chances” Malcolm said firmly. But he deposited the gun in his pocket.
Phillis raised one eyebrow and looked at the little man up the tree, “Do you really think he’s a threat?”
“Anyone can carry a gun my dear” Malcolm stated while looking up the tree. He had to admit though, the small man certainly didn’t look dangerous. But then, Malcolm knew that looks can be deceiving.
“Gun? Gun? Now why would ya be thinkin I be carryin’ a gun?” Cried the little man. “I hate the damn things! Why one could hurt themselves with the nasty things! Now would ya be so kind as to be lettin me down?”
Phillis smiled again. He talked just like he looked, except for one thing. His voice was deep. Really deep. Like when you find a old fashion well and call into it deep. She shook her head. This had been a really strange day, why should the night not be stranger.
“You can climb down. Pal won’t eat you, he’s all ready had his supper” Phillis called up to the little man. Pal barked and ran to the tree.
“Ya I can see the beastie looks well fed. But I’m not wantin him to have old Rags as a dessert!” the little man cried.
“Come here Pal!” Phillis called her furry friend over to her again. She was smiling. She couldn’t help it. Who would believe she found a brown leprechaun in her garden? Pal ran over to Phillis again and barked. He almost looked like he wanted to play with his newly treed friend. Phillis smothered a laugh and looked upwards once more.
“Come on down!” Malcolm yelled up. He was curious why this oddly dressed man was here. He wasn’t sure he trusted the little man. He looked too old to be up a tree anyway.
“Yes, yes. I’ll be a comin down now. You just keep that beastie with ya till I can get me feet on solid ground again” the little man called as he started his ascension down to the ground.
Phillis held Pal by his collar till the man could get down. She didn’t think Pal would hurt him, but she wasn’t going to take any chances. For a little old man he sure could move Phillis thought to herself as the man jumped the last few feet and tugged his hat back firmly on his head.
The man must have been a few inches under five feet. He cautiously walked up to Phillis. “You keep a hold of the beastie will ya please” he said. Then he stuck out his hand to Phillis, “I be Mánus Ó Raghallaigh. I was an old, old friend of your Great Grandmothers. You must be Phillis Dragomir, you be a spittin image of dear Edith.”
Phillis put her hand in his small one. He had a firm handshake. He held her hand as he said “I be so sorry for your loss. Edith was a fine woman. None better. I wanted to be here for her funeral, but, ahem, got delayed a wee bit.”
Phillis looked down into the man’s brown eyes and saw the sadness in them. Strange that she had never met him before, if he was such a good friend to Edith as he claims. She felt her hand warm up, almost as if there was a kind of energy coming from the man. She pulled her hand away and as soon the contact was broken the warmth dissipated.
Malcolm and Pal watch the interplay between Phillis and the little man. Malcolm frowned. Pal sat with ears alert and eyes watchful, but he didn’t leave Phillis’s side. Malcolm wasn’t sure what to make of the man. He was suspicious since Edith never mentioned this strange fellow to him. He could see from Phillis’s expression that she had never heard of the man either. This little elf, Malcolm thought needed careful watching.
The little man smiled up at them, a twinkle in his brown eyes. “Just call me Rags, all my friends do.”
“Never heard of you and I was friends, good friends with Edith for years” Malcolm stated.
“Ah, ye was Edith’s companion were you not? Malcolm Gerroud the name is then?” Rags said in his deep sing song voice. “My good friend Edith mentioned you to me she did. Said you were a suspicious type ye be.”
Malcolm looked surprised Phillis noticed, but also even more suspicious. Phillis watched in interest. Rags turned to Phillis and stepped forward. Pal ever alert put his big body between Phillis and the strange man. He didn’t growl, or go after the man, he just stood in between the two.
Phillis looked at the Rags and waited. Rags smiled at Pal and slowly raised a hand toward him. Phillis tensed because she wasn’t sure what Pal would do. So far he hadn’t let any one touch him except her and Damon’s sister. He wouldn’t even let Malcolm touch him. But Rags didn’t hesitate, he let the big dog sniff his outstretched hand, then whispered something to him that to Phillis sounded like Gaelic.
Pal stood still, his ears perked and listening. His eyes never left the small man in front of him. Rags kept talking to Pal in the strange language and stepped closer to the dog. He laid one small brown hand on his head and continued talking.
Malcolm and Phillis watched as Rags then took his other hand and laid it on Pal’s back. All the time his soft deep voice spoke the language of ancients. Phillis watched as the dog accepted Rags.
Rags dropped both hands to his side and smiled at Pal. Pal shifted his body and sat next to Phillis no longer blocking the man. Phillis somehow wasn’t surprised at the developments. This small brown man with the deep Gaelic voice was different. Very different. Time would tell whether that was good or bad for Phillis.
Rags next stepped closer to Phillis, now that the beastie was out of the way. He could see Edith in the girl’s face, even in some mannerisms. She didn’t trust him, which was natural. But she would. He would make sure of it. He needed her trust or doing what he came to do would be impossible.