J.J. Overton's Blog: Writing and Sci fi - Posts Tagged "merton-mill"

The beginning of a story, part two

The day was fresh and breezy, ideal for a spot of exploration in and around the hamlet of Merton Mill. We were standing on the bridge that Sandra remembered from when she was eight years old.
It was then that she told Chris and I about something that used to occur on the Okehampton to Barnstaple Road that caused a bit of a stir in the neighbourhood.
"We went along in the car to see what it was all about," she said.
I didn't know what was coming but she had my attention for what came next.
"It was well-known by the locals at the time . . . quite a talking point because what went on was so bizarre."
Just then, a dark cloud covered the sun and the breeze grew chill. I shivered and I noticed that Chris did too. Sandra carried on, "We motored to the Okehampton to Barnstaple road. Remember, I'm talking about a time during the sixties, the roads were a lot quieter then, so there wasn't much traffic about. We came around a bend and there it was, the strangest cortege, coming toward us on the other side of the road. It was a man on a cycle with his head and face covered by a black hood. His wife was pushing him along the road. Apparently, they did this all day long; creepy or what?"
"Who was he?" Chris asked.
"When the locals talked about him I thought they were calling him Mister X but they had broad Devon accents and I learned later that he was Mister Hicks."
"Mister X suits the situation better," I said. "Anyway, what happened to them?"
"Well here's the strangest bit," Sandra said. "He used to lie in a field and shine a torch up into the night sky. Whether his wife did as well I don't know. Anyway, the locals said that one day the two of them just disappeared, and they've never been heard of since."

The black cloud drifted away from the Sun and the previously chill wind became gentle and warm. I wondered what happened to the black-masked cyclist and his wife; I gazed at the clouds, considering the torch and how Mister X shone it into the heavens. And then I looked over my shoulder to the old mill-house with its great wheel slowly rotating in the flume. What other tales could there be in these obscure parts of Devon?
I decided to dig deeper. Maybe, based on these events, I will write a book.

Until next time,
Keep well,
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Published on December 06, 2018 12:22 Tags: devon, merton-mill, mystery, sense-of-place

Writing and Sci fi

J.J. Overton
The aim of this blog is to explore reading and writing and the processes involved, with a leaning toward science fiction and fantasy.
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