Saturday, 29 June 2013

An edit from the Book Of Pain.

I've begun the first edit of my newest and longest novel. Here's the opening section of my hero's latest adventure.

   Flethcer and the rest of the crew were enjoying a brief rest from the relentless toil as the captain had decided to sail in one direction for more than ten minutes. For that Fletcher was glad. Apart from his constant companion, pain, he now had another ten or so ailments to consider. They would not kill him; nothing would kill him, but it seemed that the curse enjoyed finding new and more excruciating ways to hurt him.
   'Here, have some rum.’ The old man said with a manic gleam, swilling the contents of a barrel into the mugs rolling around in the scuppers. ‘And if you drink enough you won’t feel the pain when a Spanish cannonball goes straight up your arse.’ He cackled before moving off to spread more cheer.

   Fletcher took this time to examine his fellow prisoners. Some were in their teens but most in their early twenties with only a couple over that age. The two fatalities of the day before had been in their late forties and obviously too slow or weak to continue the heavy work imposed on them. He took a deep gulp of the filthy brew. As with food, he didn’t need to drink but wanted for the moment at least to be taken as one of the others. With some relief, he was not immediately sick as he’d feared and within a few moments began to feel a warm glow in his stomach. Fifteen minutes later, after swilling the entire mug he settled back, his pain and exertion almost overcoming.
   ‘Ere’, you don’t want to drink too much.’ The words were spoken, not unkindly near to his left side. After opening his eyes and grimacing from the pain, he spied a youngish man staring uncertainly at him from the gloom. He seemed to find Fletcher somehow interesting. It was not the look he’d received and avoided a few times from Father Emmanuel, but simply one of curiosity. ‘If you get drunk you’ll be flogged. You won’t like it, look.’ With a grunt of pain himself he turned aside and pulled up the ragged remains of his shirt to reveal his back, a criss-cross horror of old and new scars. Obviously the result of several whippings from someone on board who knew and enjoyed his work.
   ‘It don’t half hurt, and after they finish they rub salt on it to make it worse. And you still have to work as before.’ Dear god; what kind of hellhole had he come to? It didn’t make sense to punish people so when they were out at sea. But then, as they had observed, and been told, there were always more to be stolen away from their families. It was almost like being back at the abbey. For the first time he began to consider the wisdom of allowing himself to be brought here.
   ‘All hands on deck!’


  1. My daughter has a book of various tortures that date back to thousands of years. They even have a method to torture peeps with their own poo. Pretty gross, huh?

    Also, thank you for reading and reviewing Secondhand SHoes.

    Hugs and chocolate,

  2. My daughter can torture me just with her constant chatter.
    You're welcome. I enjoyed it and wait for the next. I'll put a review on my blog if I ever get another day off work. I haven't had one for two weeks.

  3. Such excellent writing. This is going to be quite the novel.

  4. I hope so and I won't release it until it' as perfect as I can make it.