825 words of Hawks and Dragons written at lunchtime, and there's more blurring of Annie's two worlds:
The queue surged forwards, as the chain holding them back was released, and the noise from its members increased as they squabbled over which were the best seats in the carriages. A tall, big bellied man strode up and down the platform, pushing people into the carriages and securing metal bars across their laps to hold them in place. When all the seats were filled, he turned an bellowed at a flock of impatient teenagers, scaring them back down the steps of the platform, and then fixing the chain back in place to keep them there.
He pulled down on a great red lever, and the carriages began to rattle their way along the track, slowly at first as they climbed the first slope towards the smallest of the tower, then faster as first one, then the next and then all of the carriages began to career along the first downward slope towards a tightly curving right-handed bend.
The man turned and looked straight at Annie.
She shrank back into the shade of the carousel's ticket booth, shivering as she suddenly recognised his face. His ruddy cheeks, his piercing amber eyes, his thinning yellow hair: this was the man she had seen building the trap on her previous visit to the castle. And now he had caught something.
I also wrote another 355 words on Searching for Julia, although there may have to be some pruning later:
The Dukes, as indicated by the early written histories, had considered themselves above – and out of the reach of – common law. Not only in England, or even the British Empire, but throughout the world. They had been encouraged in this belief by Royal patronage, and later by various elected politicians of their time: so long as they continued to carry out Crown business at home and abroad, unnoticed by the wider populous, then any minor legal matters would be swiftly and efficiently smoothed over for them.
Surely this could not have continued into the modern era? Edward seemed to believe himself above the law – although he did also seem to heed the rules at least where drinking and driving was concerned – and Eddie Reynard was apparently untouchable. Someone should do something. People were doing something. There had been rumours of upcoming routings of corrupt police officers in any number of forces, even though bribery still went on. One day – one day very soon – there would be no place for corruption in the police or the security services, and no place for a man like Edward. Linda almost felt sorry for him, but then she still had no explanation for what had happened to Julia. Until she figured out the answer to that part of the puzzle she should have no place for sympathy where Edward was concerned.
I need to do some digging into criminal process for that last bit, but later...
539 words on Hawks and Dragon, plus a small editing tweak that pushed the word count up ever so slightly. Annie has gone back to London:
The phone's signal wasn't strong enough for her to look up the names on her journey home, and she was too tired to use her computer for more than checking emails when she got in, but she ran a comprehensive search on the computers at work the next day.
The funfair travelled extensively along the south coast, visiting town and village pageants and carnivals in addition to stopping for a week at a time at different castles. There was no mention of the roller-coaster, though; another ride had been travelling with the funfair prior to its current pitch. Nor was the roller-coaster mentioned as having travelled with other funfairs, although Annie wasn't sure her search terms had turned up every possible fair that time; the man might have used a different name for his ride before, or joined a fair too late to be included in its publicity. In fact, not being able to find a single mention of the roller-coaster was suspicious in itself. Had the man and the ride appeared out of nowhere? Annie could almost believe that possible.
Not many more words of Searching for Julia added, although I've had an email from my tame historian with a couple of corrections to what I've already written this month, and also a couple of documents that I need to include in Linda's afternoon searches once I've worked out where she might find them. And once I've reminded myself which King was which in the era the documents relate too.
In the meantime, here's something I didn't post before, now in tweaked form:
She removed a neatly folded cloth – plain white muslin – to reveal two small parcels of plain black silk resting on top of almost a ream of yellowing pages. Carefully unfolding the silk on top of the muslin, Linda found an elaborately decorated dagger, its hilt and blade wrapped separately.
Linda pulled on her gloves, and reassembled then examined the dagger; it was oriental in design, and easily sliced through a page of Linda's notebook when she tested the blade. The hilt appeared to have been made for a larger hand than hers, and its weighting implied that this was a weapon rather than some mere ornament. It was well polished, but Linda imagined that it must have been used as a weapon at some point in its recent history. Why else would it be hidden away in a locked drawer within a locked room, rather than on display in the public rooms of the Lodge? Had Edward carried it for self defence? Had he killed with it? Who had been killed with it?
I may need to write more about the decoration on the dagger as it ties in with other symbolism around the place, but again that requires more thought yet.
Another 574 words of Hawks and Dragon, and Annie has found out where Rose lives:
Hopping off the first bus, Annie felt in her pocket, but her phone was still on her dressing table. She should really have thought to phone Rose before setting off. If Rose had seen her at the window – if Rose had recognised her – then she might have been trying to phone Annie.
Over the roar and the whine as the bus pulled away, Annie heard her name being called. She turned, and there stood Rose at the bus stop on the other side of the road.
Meanwhile, in Searching for Julia I only made a small amount of progress, but I'm now adding a new scene to the next chapter (160 words):
Linda returned to the Muniment Room the next day, having worked until dinner time the night before, after which she had only paid a brief, distracted visit to Brigit. Her head had been too full of stories of the Dukes of Derwent Dale, of Georgina's diaries, and of Edward's vast reams of indecipherable notes to be much of a companion. She would finish her work earlier today; she just wanted to read more of the diaries, and maybe sneak another look at Edward's notes in case any part of them suddenly made sense.
The room had been rearranged overnight. Lionel's painting of the watermill had gone, although the boxes of diaries were still in the same place. The gloves Linda had worn the day before were still on the desk, but the papers they had lain on were gone. Glancing around, Linda could see that some drawers jutted slightly open, although not the same ones as on the previous day.
No writing happened, due to my spending the entire day with awesome people and talking about writing.
No writing happened due to catching up after the Meet. I did lots of plotting in my head though.
I've been trying to keep up with everyone else's progress on the various writing challenges this month, but feel free to tell me more about how you're doing in the comments.