12th Night

 

12th Night revels

 

 
The evening was crisp with an unusually clear sky, which may be why we had one of the best 12th Night turnouts for many years. Torches and masks made a dramatic show as we paraded around the town centre, and the traditional dance was a great success. I know there are some who want to modernise the event with lively tunes, but the traditional, mournful dances and slow airs have a certain majesty that suits the dark time of the year.
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January Sales!

 

 
It’s a sales extravaganza at Millet’s Fabric Store this week. Two gloves for the price of one! Recycled handkerchiefs at half price! By two shrouds, get a third for free! Experienced tailoring for all your needs. Stop by and see what we have on offer.
 

Delays on the Bridge

 

Excavation site at dusk

 

Work to lay the foundations for Balthazar Lemon’s bridge to the mainland hit a setback. The small headland to the south of the harbour had been determined as the best spot, facing where our brightest thinkers understand the mainland to be. However, this small headland turned out not to be rock, as first imagined. Excavations to put down support posts revealed wood. Work on the bridge has stopped because all of those involved were far more interested in finding out what this buried wood is from, than in building the bridge. Your humble editor is not a man of science, but feels the future should take precedent over the past.
 
Man hours have been lost in digging up the sandbank. This work has revealed the remains of a ship. A large one, as far as can be ascertained, although the vast majority remains buried. Already tales are flying around, filling the wreck with imagined treasures. I would like to assure readers that based on my observations, the ship is filled with mud, slime and old seaweed.
 
Plans to lay the bridge foundations are delayed, but I have been assured the work will continue.
 

Seasonal Events

 

 
I trust that you all enjoyed a merry Christmas. The midnight mass was especially atmospheric this year, the wind around the church producing a sound uncannily like a child crying. Twenty graves have been dug to see us through the winter – a conservative estimate I fear. For the wellbeing of your community, do not undertake to die before the thaw, if you can possibly help it!

Released from the clay

Living bones
Living bones

Today Jasper Fingle appeared at my door, pale and obviously terrified. The bones of our ancestor have returned to his garden, and appear to be digging. I went to observe this for myself, and a crowd soon gathered at the scene. These disturbingly animate remains clearly have some intelligence guiding them. I watched the uncanny figure scraping soil with bare bone. Some of our local boys attempted to discourage it, but it proved as oblivious to clumps of dirt as to heckles. I returned later in the day to find the hole much enlarged. At dusk, our first ancestor pulled a second skeletal form from the ground. It was an eerie sight. How many more of them are there? And what will become of us if they are liberated? Will we all return to walk as bones in the fullness of time?

A Nightmarish Visitation

Manifestations of evil.

Two nights ago, panicked members of the Chevin family called Reverend Davies out to one of their cottages. I happened to be visiting the orphanage when the summons came, went along, and so was witness to the horrendous screams, terrifying cries and eye-watering smells emerging from that place. Even though certain of the Chevins have reputations for not maintaining standards, it was clear something far worse than normal was afoot. Instructed to remain outside, I watched our brave Reverend enter the property, Bible in one hand, bottle of holy water in the other.

 In the poor light, I could see little, but I give you my words, dear readers, that something vile and unnatural was inside that cottage. I saw it leave, but have not words to express the horror of it. The dry rustle of its wings, the clatter of bone, or chitin, or many beaks – it seemed to have all of these attributes and more. For a moment it turned its single, glowing eye towards me, and I thought my heart would stop beating from fear. Reverend Davies emerged, and the monstrosity fled from him.

When I asked our Reverend to explain what I had seen, he shook his head. “There are some things it is best not to know, but we are not alone here. Where there is faith, there is hope.”

Spade Up Sunday

who knows how your meese will grow?

 Yes folks, this Sunday is the day to get your spade out, before the ground freezes. The first frosts will have softened up the black eyed meese, and there’s no shortage of them under the hedges and in dank corners this year.

I find it works best to gather them into on old pot, cup or other lidless container, for ease of lifting in the spring, and to bury them at a depth of about a foot. A thick layer of kitchen scraps will help them grow. However, from experience it is best to give them only vegetable matter. Meese who are given meat scraps frequently turn out aggressive.

A Hopeless Bridge?

The way forwards

Last night’s meeting at the Town Hall was a remarkable gathering, and I’ve not seen the place so crowded in years. Balthazar Lemon’s bridge plan has everyone talking. For anyone who wasn’t there, the man responsible for our island’s lighthouse plans to build a bridge connecting us to the mainland.

Unlike many of us, Mister Lemon was not born on Hopeless, and has seen something of the world. He is certain it can be done, and that science will defeat the currents where seamanship cannot. The bridge project calls for flotation devices, and a modest quantity of wood, which might be salvaged from derelict houses so save on work. On paper, it looks tremendously complicated to me, but one cannot help but be impressed by the sheer scale of Balthazar Lemon’s vision.

Imagine the possibilities, dear readers, if we are able to walk across the sea to the mainland! Think of the wonderful benefits, the opportunities for our younger people! We will be able to import coffee rather than depending on the odd shipment washing ashore! There might be proper whiskey on a regular basis rather than the eye watering stuff Doc Willoughby ferments – from what I dare not speculate! Balthazar Lemon needs your help, your spare timber, and whatever time you can donate to this most excellent cause. Let us build our way out of isolation and into a bright future!

News for the residents of Hopeless, Maine.