In a land before transformation, where a corpulent charcoal moon tracks a faraway sun one cannot see black from white such is the blinding brume of eternal eclipse. It is there that the archer is superfluous, the hunter marksman nonessential. No place for transparent miracles, imperturbable martyrs, just wishful thinking fumbling lovers.  No pistols at dawn in such foggy places, no arrow can be aimed in such murk for what prevails befriends only the little brown mushroom and the three blind mice.  The language spoken in this place neglected to baptise the philosopher’s aspirational understanding of the fundamental causes and principles of a universe unexposed.

Testosterone charged Big Chuck drove a monster four by four something or other. His expedition into the Dark Forest of Out There Somewhere had gone horribly wrong yet ever the sucker to prove an urban myth his quest to capture the Ghostly Virgin of the Fog his crew mates had told him of was one he would pursue undaunted. The fact his compatriots had made up the tale remained unknown to the poor delusional chap.

“Man if I can get a tranquilising dart into the butt of that little beauty and cage her up the boys will be so bloody jealous.  I’ll be a hero, maybe get to write a book about the hunt someday, I mean we’ve only got those two toe rags the Big Foot and The Abdominal Snowman back on Earth” Big Chuck often spoke thoughts aloud to himself.

The thing was that contact with the giant mother ship was lost, his navigational aids unglued.  Worse still Big Chuck was hopelessly at sea and befuddled in this lightless land of misty stew. Thankfully, or so he presumed, his fog lights still functioned.

Now the tribe of almost humans that inhabited the Dark Forest of the Out There Somewhere would in an ideal world have worn spectacles for the evolutionary process had been unkind in terms of 20/20 vision, moreover a torch or two would not have gone amiss. Sadly, they had neither nor likely ever would it seemed. That, of course was before Big Chuck arrived unannounced with his prolific fog lights!

Big Chuck was parked up, sat upon his vehicles bonnet in order to contemplate his situation over a swift vape. In truth he was off with the fairies, which is the reason he at first failed to notice young Evergreen III (yes the tribe did have rudimentary numeric skills) out searching for useful things. The girl was dressed in a full length deerskin cape – it goes without saying the tribe had yet to invent sleeves, collars and leggings – upon which sat a cheap owl brooch fashioned from bark. In all of her eighteen tree trunk rings she had never seen the like of what she stumbled upon that day namely two shafts of fierce golden light that had, in her iffy eyes at least, burned holes in the fog.

Albeit a little charry she approached the light shafts ever so slowly. The temptation to reach out and touch proved overwhelming, so she did just that. That her hand had sliced the light apart shocked her somewhat for she had presumed it a solid thing. Nevertheless, Evergreen III determined she would somehow entice it, well both beams in reality, to follow her home, which was exactly what she unwittingly did for Big Chuck had been startled from his musings into action the very moment Evergreen III had interfered with his fog light.

The girl’s tried and tested mode of hunting was to sing the Song of Enchantment, the song that could in effect hypnotize any and all the creatures of the forest. “Brilliant it works” she said to herself clapping her hands together in glee as the lights moved forward with her. When she increased her pace so did the lights, when reducing the pace vice versa. When she looked ahead she noted her own jet black image as crystal clear and attached to her feet. “How magic is that!” her passing thought. Clearly she had no idea that Big Chuck was tailing her at a safe distance.

Closer, ever closer to her village she travelled with her prize at her back. “Bollocks’ exclaimed Big Chuck as he checked his fuel gauge following the first engine splutter. “Thrice bollocks” as his fog lights began to fade on him also. Moments later the whole kit and caboodle died on him. Evergreen III, back in familiar gloom was bereft wondering exactly what had happened.

Big Chuck was a man’s man, a fellow others could rely on in a crisis and now stuck lost in an unknown environment fazed him not. “Let there be light” his immediate reaction to the situation. Amid the detritus at his feet he discovered a worthwhile dry broken branch, “Perfect”. Taking the safety matches (one of the few items future technology had never adequately replaced) from his top jacket pocket he set it alight.
From just a little way away Evergreen III watched in awe. The brave girl took not too long to pluck up the courage and make herself known. The pair stared at each other right up close (a necessity to short sighted Evergreen III) neither moving an inch for what seemed an inordinate period until she beckoned him hence in the time honoured manner of the universe, a simple wave. Lightless and shadow less she walked on, Big Chuck following in her wake with his tranquiliser gun at the ready, “Just in case.”

It was thus that Evergreen III delivered up Big Chuck to her kind in their treetop settlement. He was revered forevermore as the man who gifted them fire, and over time so much more. The pair fell in love, of course they did. She taught him the ways of the forest, he reciprocated teaching her the ways of man. For all his bravado at heart Big Chuck was, as they called him in his bar back on Earth, ‘a good bloke.’ Once given subliminal (they had to be subliminal as Big Chuck was so very bull-headed at first) lessons in tenderness and respect he became quite the greatest ‘bloke’.

In many tree trunk rings hence the couple would become legend, their exploits even committed to sacred writ, their values lauded far and wide within and beyond the Forest of Somewhere Out There. Yet those tales of wonder are to be made known only when the tree trunk rings have multiplied some more.


32 thoughts on “EVERGREEN III & BIG CHUCK

    1. Chuck is a US name I think…we don’t get them here (also we don’t have astronauts…well not proper ones)…do you know if it’s a full name or short for another name?

      1. The thing is how do you write whole books? Haven’t written a thing today yet with the weather bad and no place to go that appeals I should have written something! You write whole books with the spine of a tale constant…at 127 years old I should be able to craft something…I’d settle for an tenth of your skills (not just an idle compliment I stress).

    1. Oh God MIKE, I must blog that one cos I do know you never say things idly. I really don’t know how I write anything. I think a big part of it is putting something on the paper. It does not matter what it is. So many words per day regardless. I never think about where I am going or get me knickers in a twist about the next step, cos I never actually know and I dinnae want mah knickers tangled. Well.. Not by sheer futility anyhows. It feels like you are crossing a ravine and you just keep putting the next plank out and hoping it won’t collapse when you step on it. And I just pray having written line one I will get to 90 thou words. I also never know what my characters are going to do. They do things and I think WHY? And maybe I will blog that soon cos in this book I have just sold, this happened and I truly struggled with it and hauled half of it out, changed it, then saw at the end the only way to tie a loose end was by letting them do what they had done. Fortunately I had not binned that bit of it.
      I just started this prequel to the Viking and Courtesan. I am telling you now I have only got a few vague ideas. Beginning middle. end. That is all I ever see. I don’t think about pacing,. I just ask myself has every scene got a goal for my folks, plenty motivation and conflict. SO really just write. You are a wonderful, wonderful writer. I love your work. I would read anything by you. You can always batter something into shape afterwards. One tip. Don’t stop to batter as you go along ( except the walls when you think AHHHH) or you will never finish. That much I have learned. Hell at 127 years old you dinnae have time. x

      1. What a marvellous insight into the way a mind who can write successfully whole, complete books works. I am grateful you took time out to pen this response. I think I’ve maybe lost the ‘open’ mind. Presently it takes me a day to write a whole poem possibly two days to write a short story whereas as while back I could knock a piece out in 20 minutes. You see I am making the very mistake you warn about…a bit like Dylan’s ‘Hard Rains Gonna Fall’ where he wanted each sentence to be the potential title for a song. I keep revisiting a sentence to make sure it’s OK before writing the next and in doing so often forget or lose what the next sentence was leaving me all in a muddle. I think back to when we first got rid of our business. I wrote my one and only book ‘The Almost Obedient Only Child’- 200,000 words; got it proof reader properly; got it back, thought ‘this is shite’ and deleted it on a lap top which sadly is no more. Took me 4 years to write and I wish I’d kept for some pieces within which were usable…then again my child like temper took hold and that was that! Notwithstanding I have taken in what you say and as you have ‘been there; done it’ (awful expression, my apologies). I think to write a book I may have to lock myself away though…the middle of France has appeal because of all the various ‘urges’ we all get writing is the one that overwhelms there I find. Thank you again.
        By the way reverting to old Victorian houses the latest costly problem is a leak twixt stop cock and meter in the road (about a 20 metre distance on a steep slope). I have Home Emergency Insurance. However, that I am now told that only applies if I can tell them where the leak is. Having pointed out that I don’t have X-Ray vision they point out that until I can identify they will not pay yet their SOS people will come out for their basic £500 (!) call out fee plus whatever the bill is thereafter. I guessing a two grand job. Oh the joy of being back in an old property! Almost forgot this all started with a quarterly water usage (as opposed to getting rid of water used) bill for £792 for the quarter just gone. The gal at the water company though said that even before we purchased this place the bills were always well above average!

      2. OK…firstly to get to the leak…. oh mundane matters, it is diff up north re these things still, where we just disown anything that is not in the house itself and the let the council deal with it and pay for it. We ain’t got ,meters yet. Jees thought would not like to think if we’d had that in the last house. especially when it came to leaks and pointing them out. Old properties are money eaters whatever though. But …very rewarding…
        NOW, as for the rest, I also think you have touched on something else when you say how long it takes to write certain things. I honestly feel that depends on other things and we beat ourselves up on it feeling we are abject failures cos we did not bang out the work in a certain time. BUT if it cos you are revisiting a piece to make it perfect, then that is where you need to just push on. Otherwise you will dither over the perfection of one word . Best bit being an editor may red pen that bit anyway. Now that brings me to tip two… push past the seven stages of suck. That is where it goes from this is brill to this is unusable shite. Sound familiar? I mainly think that about every sentence I write but I read somewhere that writers are driven by this need to put themselves out there even as they want to cover their faces and retreat into the shadows. I think if you write, that is normal BUT hard to overcome so acknowledge it. AND never bin anything. Put it into another folder. As for the retreat bit ..well why not? Having said that all your poetry is wonderful. You could put out more anthologies. As for books…well, I reckon you have more than enough ideas and material, so retreat for a while and go for it. x

      3. Metered water (we’ve had for ages wherever we’ve lived) can be a bit of a plus if the family is quite small, just that it goes horribly wrong when there is a leak!
        You’ve confirmed my own thoughts re the time I am now taking to write…it all started when I thought I’d up my game for a collection of bits for a new book for the spring (Rachel I think will do all the clever stuff on Amazon with designs and loading all again when her health is back which is rather handy) and point two you make does sound familiar indeed! All a bit of a learning curve and I think this summer I’ll take your advice when trying to write a proper book. It will mean cutting back on the blog because being a bloke I can’t multi-task at all. I have been nurturing an idea for a bitter sweet comic tale of woe regarding a tragic failure going through various stages of life messing up gloriously along the way. Got a beginning and middle plus several endings and some looney characters in mind.
        So then I shall take your advice and simply write it then return to some editing and tart it up at that stage. I really do appreciate what you have written here, more so in that you are talking from a position of have done it before.
        Many thanks Ms. Shehannemoore.

    2. Mike, firstly you are too kind. I am thrilled to know you are thinking of a book. The things is to get ruthless, with yourself most of all. Cos we have our grandson two days a week from early morning till early evening, I have had to cut back on blogging slightly. The dudes take a while to get the pics captioned. Not the actual wording just the whole biz of plastering with pictures, so I have cut back on the amount of blogs per week and also my Lady Fury one. The ting is you will also have a store of poetry and prose you can use again. Don’t beat yourself up re a reblog. You get new followers all the time so there followers who have not read that post or who won’t mind being reminded of it. Just bash on. I mean that. If I stopped to consider every word I wrote I would never ever finish a book as mostly I think that is shite. Just get to the end. Then you hammer it into shape. The biggest thing in writing….whatever kind of book you are writing, if it is a novel, is to keep asking yourself does this scene have goal, motivation, conflict. Anything else is of really no consequence if you get me. Watch your points of view and really just write. You are too talented not to.

  1. Oooh! Loved this. Your writing is so nuanced that a single reading never reveals all of the truths. In some ways this reminded me of Joseph Conrad’s Heart of Darkness–the dream like quality, not the subject matter, obviously.

    1. Ah you have done me a favour Leslie…all this blogging has stopped me reading! I have promised myself a good book and I’ve never read that one…off to the bookshop in the AM for me.

      1. I’m going to find it and reread it. I don’t think I have a hard copy anymore, so I’ll download it to my e-reader. Eager to hear your thoughts.

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