It’s been a while hasn’t it?
Come in and sit down, make yourself comfortable. I’d offer you a drink but the glasses are all a little dusty. I haven’t been around much to keep an eye on things here at the Manor and there are cobwebs in the corners and an unpleasant scuttling noise from behind the wainscoting. Rats probably. Hopefully. Make yourself comfortable. Try not to worry about the noises.
I wish I had a more interesting story to tell about my absence from Marlowe Manor. I wish I could spin you yarns about strange sea voyages on ships entirely crewed by pale and silent sailors each with their darkest secret tattooed across their chest, or about being abducted by inexplicable angular creatures who serve an omnipotent but dyslexic deity who grows ever more obtuse when it comes to the rights of his creation. I’d like to be able to tell you about my recent silence being due to my being a part of a secret expedition to a strange parallel world where wars are fought over natural resources and computers grow ever more important in the making of decisions and my failure to prevent the inevitable, or about being called for jury duty at a court whose members were drawn from all times and all places to decide the fate of a young man who had been caught stealing bread out of sheer malice.
But I can’t. I honestly can’t. It’s not that I’ve been sworn to silence about these things, please don’t think that (please. They’ll check).
My recent silence has been entirely due to Real Life issues. Life has been very busy of late, and complex, and not always easy. Beloved relatives have been ill and Arrangements Have Had To Be Made about many things, the day job has been fraught with more than the usual amount of nonsense (I am half convinced I am part of some strange social or psychological experiment in which I am forced to spend my days in the company of the Perpetually Strange in order to determine my reactions), and although I have still been working on my novel I’ve had precious little time or headspace for other writing.
I hope that this will change soon, and I can get back to contributing to the Light and Shade Challenge in all its new and upgraded glory, and spending time in the company of you all. I’ve missed the words and the worlds and as ever I am hungry for stories.
I’ll be back soon then with stories of my own. Make yourself at home (except for the door behind the curtain on the third floor, you must never, ever, ever look beyond that door) and please don’t worry about the noises in the wainscoting. Almost certainly rats.