For many years, Boxing Day has been my favourite day of the whole festivities. Mostly because we don’t have to be anywhere but home, and nothing is demanded of us. We can do as we please, and for me that meant taking up residence on the sofa to write.
My Boxing Day writing spree often ended with huge word counts, even if my husband was watching TV at the same time. Because it was (limited) free time, my brain went into writing mode. And it only got better when we moved into our current house, where there’s a huge fireplace.
Nothing beats being crashed out on the sofa in front of the fire.
Only this year, owing to rather too much water in the living room a few months ago, there’s no sofa. But we still have a fire and we’ll make do somehow. If I’m lucky, there’ll even be proper weather to inspire the writing muse.
What am I going to be writing? Well…. I’ve been sifting my WiP stack in preparation for next year, and this one caught my eye. It’s a murder mystery called Yellow Roses for Goodbyes, and it starts with a thunderstorm.
From Yellow Roses for Goodbyes
Thunder rumbled in the distance, the coming storm still a little way off to the east. Lead grey storm clouds scudded past the old tower and darkened to an ominous purple the further they headed out into the night. Robert was too small to reach the tower’s circular windows, but he could watch he clouds gather and race from his hiding place. As the light faded and the room grew darker, he all but disappeared into the small gap between the towering bookcase and the marble fireplace.
He’d found the recess by accident, chasing a couple of escaped marbles. The fit was tight, but he’d successfully squeezed into the gap and now he waited in the dark. His palms were slick with sweat and he could barely hear the howling of the wind over his heart’s frantic thuds. The first raindrops hit the high windows, then a flash of lightning bathed the sky in deep purple and white light, and Robert squeezed his lips together to make sure that not a single sound escaped him. Another crack of thunder shook the tower, and a second flash of lightning turned the room ghostly pale. Robert shoved his shaking hands deep into the pockets of his trousers and curled them into fists.
If his grandfather found him here, he would get a hiding.
The certain knowledge didn’t deter him. He was here, because his grandfather always came to the tower during a thunderstorm. To talk to the ghosts, he said.
This time Robert was there before him.
He wanted to see the ghosts. More than he had ever wanted anything. Because the spirits said to haunt the old tower were his mother and father. And he had never met either of them.