Circle….

26 Jun

Next up the GSP Legends promo we welcome Nick Harris.

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Nick Harris is the author of many published short stories, including ‘Old Lady’ (The Horror Zine) and ‘Rest In Peace’ (Welcome to Wherever). She is also the published author of a mystery novella under the pseudonym of Emma Pearce.

Her book we are highlighting today is Circle.

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Fairy Rings are harmless, right? Just innocent circles on the grass… Not for Nanna Fay, they aren’t! Trapped in a fairy ring as a young girl, she has always felt their pull and heard their call and until now, she’s managed to avoid them. But now Cora has come to stay and goes missing. There’s only one place to look…

Excerpt:

Circle

Nanna Fay wrapped her crocheted shawl around her bony shoulders and stepped out into the cold winds whipping round her cottage. Though it was September, the chill of winter swirled around her. Birds had flown south; leaves, browned and withered, had fallen from their branches, and the sun seemed distant and pale.

Normally, Nanna Fay would be inside on a day such as this, but normality was a thing of the past, now that Cora had come to stay.

Cora was her granddaughter, her only grandchild; Nanna, her legal guardian. Cora’s mother frequently stumbled into the depths of alcoholism, leaving Cora to fend for herself. At only seven years old, having a sometimes mother was not an option. The courts had stepped in when Cora accidentally set fire to the kitchen while trying to cook herself a hot meal. Neighbours had been keen to relay their own tales of how neglectful Cora’s mother was, and how often Cora was left home alone.

So now she was Nanna’s, and today was Cora’s first day at Elm Grove Middle School on the island where they now both lived. Nanna was eager to collect her and find out how it had gone.

The wind blew keener than she’d anticipated and when Nanna was halfway there, she regretted not putting on a proper coat. Too late for that now. The shawl would have to be enough. The school wasn’t very far from her home on Webb Lane, and she figured they’d be back soon.

When she got to the school, her first time ever within its grounds, she noticed, with horror and concern, the presence of a fairy circle in the school grounds. Perfectly round, its shape depicted by grass tinted darker green than that around it, the circle stood out clearly for her to see, beneath the trunk of a tree.

Oh, she knew what scientists and naturalists reckoned they were. Circles of fungi. A ring of mushrooms, common to the woodland, nothing more mysterious than that. But Nanna knew better. She’d been trapped in one before; enthralled by the fairy music playing there. Delightful music: it entranced the ear, heart and mind; ensnared the hearer; distracted her from the passing of time in the real world. The circles were traps laid by fairies, to capture mortals within them. The fairies could feed upon a mortal’s mind, stealing memories, thieving thoughts. Destroying the human, piece by piece—most people faded away into nothing when they were caught within the circles, invisible to passers-by in the real world, their minds dead.

Only . . . Nanna had been saved. Saved by her father who had entered the circle to come after her, a stout rope tied around his waist and anchored to a fence post, so he could pull himself and his beloved daughter back out. He’d only known she was there because he’d seen her disappear before his very eyes. . . . They’d never spoken again of the horror or of the state of Nanna’s mind when she returned! So many of her thoughts gone! So many childhood memories snatched away, consumed by the fairies who sat upon the mushroom tops, enjoying their feast, their banquet.

Links:

http://www.gypsyshadow.com/NickHarris.html#Circle

Amazon:

http://www.amazon.com/Circle-ebook/dp/B005NWRKB2/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1372218551&sr=8-1&keywords=Circle+Nick+Harris

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