Chapter 6 – Masquerade

The night time custom of wearing masks had become a commonplace, as it once was in medieval Venice, in the claustrophobic rabbit warren of the Old City of my grandfather’s youth. It provided a measure of discretion that covered for human frailties in so crowded a space in judgemental times. Business, romance and crime had … Continue reading Chapter 6 – Masquerade

Chapter 5 – Council

We gathered again in the Bishop’s study. Robert Tappister was caught between irritation that I had information to give and satisfaction that his own man had found out so much. The Bishop leaned back in his chair, staring vacantly into space, absorbing what I had to tell. Jimmy perched on the edge of the table. … Continue reading Chapter 5 – Council

Chapter 4 – Urban Living

Idressed down for my visit to Vernon’s base near the docks. My oldest coat, a battered wide brimmed hat, a moth eaten checked scarf, a long knife in my outside coat pocket. Underneath the coat a jacket with thin, hardened steel, plates sewn inside it, a prudent precaution even in normal times in that part … Continue reading Chapter 4 – Urban Living

Chapter 3 – Country Living

Sunlight poured in through the open curtains. White walls were polished a warm primrose yellow. Bird song was clear in the early morning calm. As I lay there a cold breeze came through the small open window and stroked my face, the contrast to the rest of me snug in the depths of the bed … Continue reading Chapter 3 – Country Living

Chapter 1 – October, Anno Domini 2153

Boredom had won and driven me out into the Old City with some of the usual suspects. Waking up on the couch in Diego’s scruffy flat was a painful experience. My mouth tasted foul. I had a crick in my neck and bruises on my ribs from things I had slept on. The tatty blanket … Continue reading Chapter 1 – October, Anno Domini 2153

After The Deluge…Part 3: Food

grilled sardines on metal plate painted wood background

Post-apocalyptic food. Is it ever mentioned? Rarely, except where it has been reduced to a joyless protein pill that meets all a human's nutritional needs or the terrifying Soylent Green. Speaking personally food is one of the great pleasures. I am sure, even in these neurotic times, I am not alone. Why should a recovering … Continue reading After The Deluge…Part 3: Food

After The Deluge… Part 1: Slow Train

Ffestiniog Railway - c1900

Following on from my little rant in the last couple of posts - too many 'Whys'?? - about our culture's obsession with speed, at the price of quality of life and experience, I thought I would start a series of articles on what I imagine post-apocalyptic life and technology might look like, starting with travel … Continue reading After The Deluge… Part 1: Slow Train

Italian Inspiration Part 3

Venice gondolas

I wanted a close, almost claustrophobic, setting for my alt. history world in 'Renaissance'. I needed a space in which it was normal that people who wished to be discreet might disguise themselves, as a matter of course, as a response to societal oppression. I turned to the example of Venice. Alley in the back … Continue reading Italian Inspiration Part 3