Thursday, 25 April 2013

An A-Z Story - V

Hope everyone's still full of vim and vigour as we move towards the end of the Challenge!

My theme is as follows: each day I will ask for words beginning with that day's letter, which I will randomly select five from to use in a sentence in an ongoing story. That sentence will be posted the next day when I'll ask for words for the next letter. So my Z sentence will appear on May 1st.

I was very grateful for the 133 U words received yesterday. You can view the chosen five below:

Upstart (suggested by rch)
Urn (suggested by rch)
Umbrella (suggested by Ella)
Unilateral (suggested by Melissa Bradley)
Union (suggested by Julia King)

So now we have...


Angels had always had a certain ambiguity, being both human and divine, reflected Acatour with an acute sense of malaise as he looked down on the arable fields of medieval England. A bird flew past making a belligerent shriek, unnerved it seemed by a boggart; Acatour descended, thinking it would take a brainiac like him to unravel the poor soul’s beginnings and why it had not reached Heaven.
     York Cathedral hove into view, shrouded in wooden scaffold as part of the local bishop’s campaign of restoration; but before he could challenge a carpenter over whether any of his colleagues had fallen to their doom, his presence was announced by the crawdad he’d eaten back in 20th century New Orleans repeating on him. He wiped dribble from his chin as the remains of the crustacean narrowly missed the workmen to land in the dew of the graveyard, berating himself for his debauched and unangelic behaviour the previous night; why did that dame have to desert him? The effervescent Ella had always been eager for exciting adventures, but when he’d asked her to accompany him on this esoteric time travel mission, she’d called him a crazy drunk and left.
     It did sound rather fabulous, in the true sense of the word, he thought to himself as he descended further before landing on an empty area of scaffold, all the better for making himself visible; next to him was some viscous fluid, making him think that any fall from this precarious structure would surely be a fluke. Stepping away from the gel-like substance, he felt something watching him and turned to see a Gardengoyle on the wall next to a carved bunch of grapes, which caused the gregarious sounds of the workmen to die away as two thoughts rang clearly in his head: what was it doing here, and did he detect guilt in the creature’s eyes?
     That horrendous stare was starting to give Acatour a headache when a workman with a harried expression shimmied up onto the platform via a hemp rope, his arrival causing an apparently hilarious reaction in the Gardengoyle. “Hey, you!” said the workman, stomping towards Acatour, but something seemed to interrupt his progress, drawing him inexorably towards the island of iridescent liquid, which seemed entirely illogical to the angel until he sensed the impish carving’s illicit intentions.
     The workman slipped on the puddle and waved his arms frantically like a jester, trying not to fall over the edge; in that moment Acatour sensed the wickedly joyful mirth of the Gardengoyle and grabbed the man’s arm, saving him from jeopardy and causing the creature’s joy to dissipate as it contemplated a future in Paranormal Jail.
     “Thank you,” said the man, “my darling Kate is too young to become a widow,” but upon saying this he started to keel over as if affected by his own version of Kryptonite; Acatour had been ready to show kindness to the grotesquely kitsch Gardengoyle, but now saw the only solution was to destroy it. While struggling to hold on to the lanky workman - who had become rather loquacious and kept babbling about his wife and lover, who Acatour hoped were the same person - and stop him from being lost over the edge of the scaffold, he cast around for any tools or discarded carvings he could use as a weapon and finally alighted on a rather hefty rock lobster, which, it occurred to him, would be much more effective than a crawdad.
     A look of merriment crossed the creature’s face that was quite deranged considering it was about to be smashed to smithereens, before it melted into the rock leaving nothing but smooth stone - it was magic, of course - and Acatour quickly descended the monumental structure, past more workmen and a rather flustered merchant, and burst through the main door just as matins was beginning. Two hundred heads turned towards him in a space as quiet as a nunnery, and he felt like a numbskull for interrupting, but he had a need as urgent as a junkie looking for his next narcotics to get that Gardengoyle before it did any more mischief; the next thing he knew, a numbing pain and squeezing sensation on his head told him the Gardengoyle had found him.
     “Oh Father, hallowed be thy name-” began an officious bishop, quickly interrupted by a loud “Ouch!” from Acatour and an earsplitting shriek from the monster at an octave which must have been unreachable by humans as the besieged angel finally wrestled it off his head, before pitching it to the black- and white- tiled floor which looked like pieces from an Othello set, where it smashed into a thousand pieces.
     “Your Holiness,” said Acatour before the stunned bishop could speak, “it is paramount that the remains of this wretched creature are scattered as far as possible, otherwise it will reassemble; and I suggest the privileged members of your congregation would like to take a piece home, one to perhaps repair a dry stone wall round a potato field, another to form part of a whimsical garden frequented by a pixie,” but before he could go on, his eye was caught by the twinkle of precious stones among the debris and he realised the scoundrel had been a thief as well as a murderer.
     By this time the congregation had gathered around the scene, and a man seemed to quiver as he stooped to retrieve a diamond ring before saying to Acatour, “Thank you, good sir, this belongs to my wife; I am a quartermaster, please accept this Quark cheese and flagon of mead to quench the mighty thirst you must have garnered in your quest to quell this monster.”
     Acatour regretted that the being wouldn’t be able to repent, but reflected that it would have probably been quite recalcitrant in that regard; turning to the quartermaster, he accepted his offerings with a rapacious stomach and hopes of rejuvenation from a meal that that great do-gooder, Robin Hood, would be glad of.
     The next sight that met his eyes, however, threatened to saturate his mind as the sensational Ella walked in through the open door; as she called out “Hey, stud!” he recalled the synchronicity he’d sensed between them and his first thought was to take her away somewhere more secluded. Although this tabernacle was not the place for such unangelic behaviour, he couldn’t resist pulling her behind the nearest triptych for a torrid kiss that made him thrum, and noticed she was wearing the necklace he’d left that acted as a tether between them through time and space.
     “Do you believe me now, you upstart?” he teased, glad that their unilateral thinking had led to this union; glancing out of a stained glass window, he noticed it was raining and made an umbrella materialise in a nearby urn, although such a thing was yet to be invented.

Your V words are vital for the continuation of my story! You can offer as many as you like, and they can be as obscure and outlandish as you like (feel free to use a dictionary for inspiration). The more words you suggest, the more chance you have of one being picked. It doesn't matter if you suggest the same word as someone else (as I know not everyone always has time to read all the comments); each will count as its own entry.

35 comments:

Dee said...

V for....

Vendetta
Varicose veins
Velvet
Virtue
Visible
Volleyball
Vivifying

Deecoded

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Vision, vicious, and vague.

Shell Flower said...

I love how he pulls out an umbrella before they were invented. Time travel does have its perks.

Voracious
Viscous
Vie
Vehement
Venerable

Julia Chiang said...

vile
voracious
valued
vilify
viable
vest
visiting
victor
valor
vision
vowed
vexed
virtual
virtue
vain
vengeance

Have a great weekend. I will be unable to check back in until next week....can't wait to read the final paragraphs.

Michael Di Gesu said...

Vigilance

Vaccination

VIVE

Venue

Vanity

Vigorous

Valiant

Vague

Keep up the good work on this story Nick.

J.L. Murphey said...

vicarious
vigor
virtuous
violin
viola
victrola
vinca
very
varied
various
vengeance
volatile

Melanie Schulz said...

Void
Vacant
Vicious
Vicarious
Victory.
(I can't wait to read how this story ends!)

Al Diaz said...

vital
veer
valiant

loverofwords said...

vapid
vermin
vermeil

Scribbles From Jenn said...

Another great scene. How will it all end?

visor
Veronica
valley
vain
Valentine
vroom
veranda
verdict

Christine Rains said...

I can't believe there's only a few days left. I want more!

V words - valley, veranda, viva, volcano, and vulture.

Laura Eno said...

You're hoping for vim and vigor? How vile of you. :)

Carol Kilgore said...

veal
venison
(am I hungry?)
voluptuous
volume
volunteer
voluntary
vain
vein
vane
venomous

Carol Kilgore said...

and vacation!

Mama J said...

My V words are:

Victory
Vile
Vacuum
Vein
Vain

Bish Denham said...

vivacious
vocal
vibrant
viceroy
vertigo
verve
verbena
vaulted
vector
vaccine
vegetable
virgin
vandalize
vortex

Mina Burrows said...

Oh this is so awesome, Nick!
Here's a few V words. Hope they help. :)

vent
Victoria
vying
violence
vindictive

C. Lee McKenzie said...

And where will this go from here?

How about a nice intensifying word, like, VERY? Or Vie or vindicate or Viking--they have to be in here somewhere.

Mark Noce said...

Love the violin. I like going to string quartet performances. Chamber music can be pretty neat:)

Jai said...

What a fun idea. I'm going to have to back to A and read them all.

Thanks for stopping by my blog.

S.P. Bowers said...

Vex (and it's offshoots, vexing, vexed) is one of my favorite words.

Samantha May said...

Almost done!

Visit
Vernacular
Voucher
Venom
Vile

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Nick .. I rather like SPs word "vex" ... you're doing so well with this story .. cheers Hilary

DayDreamer said...

You've had some brill V words recommended.

Vivacious
Voluntarily
Vigorous
Vainly
Vicariously
Vilify
Valiantly

Julie Flanders said...

vicarious, vigilant, vigilante, vexing, valiant

L. Diane Wolfe said...

I can't wait to see the ending.

Victual
Viking
Violation
Vista
Verve

Cherie Reich said...

Vexing
Vitriol
Vibrant
Very
Vivacious
Vile

michelle said...

Va-va-voom! Va-va-voom! I love the violin!
Only 4 more posts.
Well done Nick! You are a champion!

Writer In Transit

rch said...

This is such a great idea Nick, here's my v words: verse, verbose, viper

History Sleuth said...

Oh how cool! Someone else who is doing a story for A-Z! I'm so glad you stopped by my blog because now I've found this. I will have to start at the beginning.

How awesome you were donated a lot of words. I tried the same thing just trying to get one word a day. It was tough. You are fortunate to have a lot of followers who are playing along. I think it makes it more interactive.

History Sleuth's Writings A-Z

Ella said...

Fun to read Nick!

V
Valentine
void
voice
victory
vitamin
vigor
vertigo

Gwen Gardner said...

LOL, the urn was yet to be invented! That's funny :)

Victory
Vilify
Veteran
Vegan
Verisimilitude
Vapor
Vespa
Viper
Vulcan
Volvo

Jean Davis said...

Viagra
Vile
Violet
Volatile
Voltage

Julia King said...

Yay, you used my word! Woot Woot. I was hoping one of these days I would. Thanks, Sir Nick.

V Words:

Velocity
Vivacity
Victory
Valiant
Voluptuous

Nick Wilford said...

Thanks for the awesome variety of words everyone. No more for now, my sentence will be up soon!