Sunday, March 29, 2020

Bungalow 9



Bungalow 9

Along Lake Brock just before it spills into the sea there are a collection of brightly coloured holiday bungalows.  Built a few decades earlier, they remain a popular place for holiday makers.  The nine bungalows have been placed with care right on the shores of the lake much to the delight of anyone that rents one. 


Identical in layout and decor they are equally sought out, that’s all but bungalow number 9.  Even in summer, the most popular holiday season, when accomodation in Beguile, especially along the water ways is at a premium, bungalow number 9 is always empty.  


Many have no idea as to why they refuse the bungalow and decide to holiday somewhere else if all the holiday accomodation is full.  Older members of Beguile know why though.


The holiday accomodation known by its collective name of the Rivers Rest was built by Janey and Wilbur Duff.  Long time residents of Beguile they had bought to fruition their dream of building a place that families could enjoy on the shores of Lake Brock.  The first few years saw the Rivers Rest  filled with holiday makers enjoying the sun and water and the simple but comfortable accomodation.  Popular with seniors and children alike the colourful little bungalows were booked all year round. 


In the fifth year of the Rivers Rest Janey, a beloved host, was said to have left to help an elderly relative in a neighbouring town.  Wilbur gallantly kept the bungalows open and did his best to accomodate those holidaying by Lake Brock.  The year that Janey was absent was one of the hottest the locals could remember and Lake Brock was a popular destination for those wanting to cool down.  People staying in Rivers Rest started to complain to Wilbur about an unpleasant odour.  Always a thoughtful and accommodating host, he assured them that it was a tidal quirk from the lake and that the hotter summer days were to blame.  Though it was bad some relief was give by the stiff sea breeze that came in from the coast. 


After about two weeks though, as the stench increased guests started to leave Rivers Rest. One family that decided to stay had two teenage boys who were inquisitive and decided to trace the source of the reeking odour.  It bought them to bungalow 9.  The curtains were drawn but the locks were flimsy and the two troublesome boys decided to break in to the deserted bungalow.  They jimmied the door and were greeted by a nauseating stench the source of which revealed itself as their eyes adjusted to the darkened room.  


Janey hadn’t  made it out of town, in fact she sat, propped up in a chair in the corner of a room, her suitcase placed neatly on the floor beside her. 


When finally questioned Wilbur explained that the “woman in the water” had taken a dislike to Janey and had insisted he do something about her. He didn’t have the heart to bury her in the ground and Janey had always had a soft spot for Bungalow 9. 


No further explanation was ever given about a woman in the water and Wilbur spent the rest of his life in psychiatric care during which time he liked to regale his fellow inmates with tales of the mysterious woman who stepped from the depths of the lake one winters day. 


Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Susannah




Susannah Gladstone had never been predictable.  She was what the people in Beguile liked to call a free-spirit.  Part of the wealthy Gladstone family, from a young age she refused to conform to the norm.  

In her teens she had rebelled against any attempts at curtailing her desires and thoughts.  Now in her late twenties, things haven’t changed much with Susannah.  

It’s just accepted that she turned her back on the wealth and comforts offered by her family and lives in a Gypsy caravan, making a meagre living on handicrafts. The people of Beguile are not surprised to see Susannah dancing haphazardly in some field or another, seemingly to some unheard, ethereal tune.  


What the people of Beguile don’t realise is Susannah isn’t dancing alone at all.  

For those old enough to remember, there was a tragedy in one of the fields that Susannah frequents.  A Gypsy camp was razed to the ground in the middle of the night.  Susannah survived the tragedy as a baby and was adopted by the Gladstones who, interestingly enough, owned the field and had a vested interest in keeping it clear.  The Gladstones had taken the orphaned child in, raising her as their own, but never imagined that Susannah would one day return to the fold of her wayfaring, if not dead, family. 

Tuesday, December 3, 2019

The Photographie




The Photographie was opened in 1899 by Charles Frontiac, a photographer from the continent who had travelled to Beguile and opened a photographic studio.  The first in the area, the Photographie attracted a lot of attention and interest, with clients coming from far and wide. Generations of Frontiacs had worked at the Photographie until it was inherited by Sylvie Frontiac-Meyer.   

A respectable citizen of Beguile, Sylvie had been a popular photographer and had installed  the latest equipment for developing the photographic memories of other Beguile residents.   She had married one of the Meyers, a banking family in Beguile, and there was talk of a child. 


That was until she met an itinerant preacher by the name of Silas Simpson.  No-one knows what made the fun-loving photographer just walk away from her husband, career and life, but walk away she did.  A small careless note attached to the door of the Photographie was the only indication she had left with the preacher.  The handwritten note said nothing more than “Gone with Silas”. 


After the shock and gossip had died off and the Meyer family had hired a photographer to keep the Photographie open something strange started to happen.  Every film developed for someone in Beguile contained an extra photograph from the 24 on the reel.  This 25th photograph was always different but the subject was the same, Sylvie trapped and suffering in some hideous way.  The authorities investigated but the strange unexplainable exposures were never explained and Sylvie was never found.  People stopped going to the Photographie terrified by what may turn up in their pile of happy photographs. The distraught Meyer family decided it was best to close the studio down. 

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

Nathaniel Stanton




Nathaniel Stanton or The Mesmeriser, as he is known professionally, performs at all sorts of events and parties in Beguile.  His astonishing magic skills have made him highly sought after as a performer.  


Born in Beguile he lives in his family home in the mountains beyond the wild woods.  Following in the tradition of his father and grandfather it was not a surprise that Nathaniel would choose to make his living as a magician.  The Stanton Family come from a rich heritage of magic with its beginning somewhere in the depths of Old Europe in the 1700s. 


Nathaniel is particularly famous for a trick he performs with a butterfly and a small garden of red tulips.  The audience loves the trick and always walk away baffled, trying to work out how it was done.  Some even whisper it’s an elaborate and sophisticated automaton, a sensible suggestion.  In this case however not accurate, after all Nathaniel and in fact his entire family do not require the deception of constructed magic, they use real magic. 

Sunday, October 6, 2019

Professor Armatige and the Murders of 77


The old Armatige house, a replica of a house the Professor had stayed in as a child while travelling with his parents, had been built with love and decorated with pride. 

Many of the objects collected by Professor Sully Armatige on his travels as a younger man, were on display somewhere in the large house. 

The Professor, his beloved wife Adele and their two young daughters Cassandra and Bethany had loved their home and the happy family hosted fun casual parties and elegant soirĂ©es alike.  The house was a warm and inviting place. 


All this changed in July of 77. Freshly returned from touring a recently discovered and well preserved medieval town in Scotland, Professor Armatige arrived home and instantly knew something was wrong.  As he opened the large entrance doors he almost felt as though the air was sucked from him.  The smell then hit him. A rancid odour of death and putrefaction.  He pressed the sleeve of his jacket against his mouth and nose and entered the dark cavernous building that had once been such a joyous home.  


His beautiful wife Adele and his young daughters lay on the flagstone floor of the large hall, blood covering their clothing and decomposition cruelly eating  away at their once soft and beautiful features. 


Professor Armatige had stood for a moment noting that some of the glass display cabinets had been ransacked.  A sadness enveloping him as realisation of his loss struck.


To this day no one knows what happened in the Armatige home.  As always happens in smaller towns whispers and accusations sprout here and there like insipid weeds.  Some believe that a visitor passing through the town was trying to rob the house and killed the family. Others speculate  about the medieval dabbling of the Professor and what he may have naively bought into his home.  There are even those that mumble about the Professor’s hand in the spiteful and horrendous slaughters.  However to this day it remains a mystery. 


Thursday, September 26, 2019

Juniper Jones




Juniper Jones is the delectable stage name for Jamieson Briar.  A sought after drag queen Jamieson, or Juniper as he prefers to be known lives in a stunning Art Deco home on the banks of Lake Brock. 


Having moved to Beguile over fifteen years ago he is a well respected citizen that donates to many local causes and is always known to give a helping hand if required.  


His wealth, though enhanced by his stunning performances at various local, national and at times international venues, comes mainly from the sea.  


Juniper does a roaring trade in treasures he salvages from the sea.  Some Beguile residents have questioned this side business of the glamorous drag queen, especially as there is no boat at the dock in front of his beautiful home.  


The truth is that Juniper doesn’t need a boat to explore the seas for trinkets and treasures and this is mainly due to Junipers other identity.  This one he keeps to himself but for the one time he saved that girl Lorelei.  

Thursday, September 19, 2019

Emmett Kingston



Emmett Kingston is the Beguile butcher.  The business has been in his family for decades and the shop has been a reliable source of meat goods for Beguile residents since its doors opened in 1922. 


The shop has all manner of meat products and sources most of its fresh meat from the larger local farms.  Consistent good quality and a friendly approach to customers and vendors alike have resulted in the shops popularity and ensuing longevity. 


Emmett lives above the store with his mother Maude.  His father died recently so he has no plans to leave his newly grieving mother on her own just yet, despite the protestations of his current girlfriend Tanzy Thomas. 


Although the butcher shop and the apartment are traditionally decorated and beautifully cared for there is one room at the very back of the shop that causes a ripple of interest when things are quiet in the town.  


Right next to the main walk in freezer there is a red door.  The door seems to always be closed.  Some more curious customers, however, who have wandered to the back of the shop, have made some outrageous claims about what they believed they glimpsed in the small room on a rare occasion it was open. As only a few witnesses have seen the contents of the room briefly and in questionable light, their claims are slightly dubious.  There are some however that claim to have seen a bloody human heart, under a large glass cloche, still inexplicably beating.  Those claiming to have witnessed this anomaly have always been brushed off as fanciful or inebriated.  The whispers however, as with all small towns, continue.