Friday, 26 April 2013

An A-Z Story - W

We've nearly reached the end of what's been a wild and wonderful Challenge! Who else doesn't want it to end?

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.

Your 177 V words were very welcome and the winners are as follows:

Viscous (suggested by Shell Flower)
Vile (suggested by Laura Eno)
Vying (suggested by Mina Burrows)
Vex (suggested by Hilary Melton-Butcher, also by S.P. Bowers)
Valiant (suggested by Julie Flanders)

So where are we now?


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.
     “Of course, my valiant angel,” she replied with a smile, but as they walked out into the rain another thought came to vex him as he realised the downpour would make the viscous deposit left by that vile creature even more treacherous, and the workmen would be vying with each other to be the next casualty.

I can't wait to see what W words you whip up! 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.

47 comments:

Heather Holden said...

Can't believe the A-to-Z challenge is almost over. Looking forward to seeing how this story will wrap up at the end of it!

Some W words...

worrisome
wallow
willowy
wanton
wax
wishful
wasp
wit
witness
water
waste
wail
walker
weep
wonder
welder
wilt
wistful

Dee said...

Weird
Wait
Whale
Water
Winter
Wanton
Weakness

Suzanne Furness said...

W is for;

wonderful
weird
wacky
wrestle
willow

I'm thinking X should make for an interesting contribution!

T. Drecker said...

whangdoodle
whop
waggish
wheedle
wingding

I agree with Suzanne, X will be fun ;)

Lynda R Young said...

wacky
wierd
wonderful

Cynthia said...

wealth
war
warrior
weapon
wacky
whale

J.L. Murphey said...

Willful
wearing
weary
wonderful
where
would
wouldn't
well
wonder

Scribbles From Jenn said...

I enjoy going through and story looking for how you worked in the words :D

work
wow
warble
window
writer
wonky
widow
wonderful

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Wildcat, winged, and wretch.

Donna K. Weaver said...

You've already got a great list in the above suggestions.

You're obviously having way too much fun with this.

L. Diane Wolfe said...

Weasel
Wacky
Winding
Worst
Worth

michelle said...

Here goes...

Worrywart
Whimsical
Wayward
Wobble
Whoosh

Good luck!

Melanie Schulz said...

worship
wigwam
wasteful
wayward

Chuck said...

Nick, I have missed this developing story...but reading it now, you have done a masterful job!!

At least I don't have to catch up on your posts!

That whale looks like one I saw escaping the pirates!

Jay Noel said...

I can't believe how long your story has become.

whip
wonky
whoop
wince
weirdo

meradeth said...

Finally getting caught up on your post--so fun! Hmm, W words...

Woodland
Wildlife
Wendi-go
Wonderful
Wistful

Random words off the top of my head!

Bish Denham said...

wife
wing
where
wig
wart
warthog
wash
wear
weave
web
wire
wisdom
wraith
wreck
wrangler
wrap
world
worm

Mama J said...

My W words are:

Wandering
Wondering
Wonderful
Wrangle
Western

Roland D. Yeomans said...

Nick, you have done a Wonderful job on this. This excerpt was both Weird yet Windstruck with humor and fun. Thanks for visiting my blog today! :-)

Sally said...

I can only suggest words already used.

loverofwords said...

wizen
wormwood
wart

This has been fun, hate to see it end.

Rhonda said...

wiggle
worm
water
window
wipe

Carol Kilgore said...

welcome
walrus
wallaby
wick
willow
wrongdoing
where
when
why
whim
whimsical

Linda Ann Nickerson said...

What a cool idea for A-Z!

Ruby Manchanda said...

Wow :)

C. Lee McKenzie said...

whimsical
wild
wooly
wary


I've run out of W words.

Deniz Bevan said...

Love the twists and turns of this story!

W... Wariangle of course! But also widdershins, west, wean, waver,, and whisk!

Ella said...

wicked
witch
wild
willful
wonder
worry
wolf
whimper
woods
west
wacky
white
witch
Wiccan

;D Nick I am loving your story!




S.P. Bowers said...

Walnut
Waterfall
Work
weight

Julie Flanders said...

Oh, I'm so excited one of my words made it again! Yours are the only random drawings I've ever won LOL.

cbwentworth said...

worthwhile
withstand
wander
wrap
wobbly

M. J. Joachim said...

Wow! It's been a few posts since I've visited...this story is coming along so well. It's wonderful!

DayDreamer said...

Wallow
Willowy
Window
Wave
Watch

ilima said...

warf
wiggle
whenever
watermelon
walrus
wonderful
witch
wrench
wrinkles

Christine Rains said...

W words: wander, wax, web, wig, and wrath.

Julia King said...

I wonder how you are going to wrap this story up in just three more days. You should publish it afterward in a short story book or something.

W Words:

Words
Whatever
Wrapping
Willow
Wanton

Silvia Villalobos said...

Lots of good V words in the post and in that last paragraph.

Here are some W words:
whack
wacky
whodunit
word
witch

Fun game.

Silvia @ Silvia Writes

Mark Means said...

Nick, I'm still impressed on how you're putting this all together...it's great! :)

My "W" words...

Winsome
Warthog
Weevil
Wracked
Wormhole

klahanie said...

Hey Nick,

Yes, I know. You've been wondering where wonderful wonky wayward wacky wry woebegone weird wild worrisome yet almost witty Gary had gone.

Wait no more. Wait no more. I have been to York Cathedral. After going there things became a bit of a "Shambles".

This might surprise you, but I can hardly wait for the alphabet challenge to end.

Seriously, happy alphabeting.

Gary at the anarchic alternative alphabet! :)

Jean Davis said...

Wander
Weird
Wonky
Wellbeing
Worn

The Golden Eagle said...

Whirligig
Whack-a-mole
Wondrously
Worrying
Wracking
Wintering

Rebecca Douglass said...

weasel
wallflower
water
waddle
wart
whistle

Fe said...

wainscot
wander
wonder
wellspring
westward

Nick Wilford said...

Well, thank you to all you wonderful word wizards. Winning words will be up soon, then it's on to X - eeep!

Grover said...

There are already plenty of W words for you to choose from, so I'll just say that I hadn't been back since about C or D, so it was great to see how your story has developed since the start of the month!

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Nick .. this is brilliant - I am really going to love reading the whole .. cheers Hilary

Shell Flower said...

Sorry I'm late again. Catching up today. You used another one of my words and it looks like it came in handy. How exciting. This is such a cool story. Cheers!