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Goblin Fruit: An eBook short story from Lips Touch
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The E-mail message field is required. Please enter the message. Please verify that you are not a robot. Would you also like to submit a review for this item? Three separate novella length tales are found in this quick to read collection. One a tale of longing Just wow. But in true Laini Taylor style, they are not what you expect. Instead they are somewhat edged with sinister like all Three short stories. All written very well, lots of colourful descriptions and all engaging to an extent. I loved daughter of smoke and bone so ordered everything else Laini had ever written.
Did I Similar to Kelly Link's short stories, sassy and disturbing. I enjoyed the mix of seduction and danger. The illustrations were excellent as well.
Lips Touch: Three Times by Laini Taylor - ISBN: (Scholastic US)
The sensation of escape, however, was of but short 60 duration, for the hammer commenced to strike; and no sooner had the last stroke of eleven startled the echoes than loud thuds, as of a heavy object bumping upon the stairs, were heard. The quaking occupants of the chambers hid their heads beneath the bedclothes, for they knew that an old-fashioned oak chair was on its way down the noble staircase, and was sliding from step to step as though dragged along by an invisible being who had only one hand at liberty.
If any one had dared to follow that chair across the wide passage and into the wainscoted parlour, he would have been startled by the sight of a fire blazing in the grate, whence, ere the servants retired, even the very embers had been removed, and in the chair, the marvellous movement of which had so frightened all the inmates of the hall, he would have seen a beautiful woman seated, with an infant at her breast.
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Year after year, on wild nights, when the snow was driven against the diamond panes, and the cry of the spirit of the storm came up from the sea, the weird firelight shone from 61 the haunted room, and through the house sounded a mysterious crooning as the unearthly visitor softly sang a lullaby to her infant.
Lads grew up into grey-headed men in the old house; and from youth to manhood, on the last night of each November, they had heard the notes, but none of them ever had caught, even when custom had somewhat deadened the terror which surrounded the events of the much-dreaded anniversary, the words of the song the ghostly woman sang. The maids, too, had always found the grate as it was left before the visit—not a cinder or speck of dust remaining to tell of the strange fire, and no one had ever heard the chair ascend the stairs.
Book Review: Lips Touch, Three Times by Laini Taylor and Jim Di Bartolo
Chair and fire and child and mother, however, were seen by many a weary wayfarer, drawn to the house by the hospitable look of the window, through which the genial glow of the burning logs shone forth into the night, but who, by tapping at the pane and crying for shelter, could not attract the attention of the pale nurse, clad in a quaint old costume with lace ruff and ruffles, and singing a mournful and melodious lullaby to the child resting upon her beautiful bosom.
Tradition tells of one of these wanderers, a footsore and miserable seafaring man on the tramp, who, attracted by the welcome glare, crept to the panes, and seeing the cosy-looking fire, and the Madonna-faced mother tenderly nursing her infant, rapped at the glass and begged for a morsel of food and permission to sleep in the hayloft—and, finding his pleadings unanswered, loudly cursed the woman who could sit and enjoy warmth and comfort and turn a deaf ear to the prayers of the homeless and hungry; upon which the seated figure turned the weird light of its wild eyes upon him and almost changed him to stone—a labourer, going to his daily toil in the early morn, finding the poor wretch gazing fixedly through the window, against which his terror-stricken face was closely pressed, his hair turned white by fear, and his fingers convulsively clutching the casement.
L ONG ago—so long, in fact, that the date has been lost in obscurity—the piously-inclined inhabitants of the then thickly wooded and wild country stretching from the sea-coast to Rivington Pike and Hoghton determined to erect a church at Whittle-le-Woods, and a site having been selected, the first stone was laid with all the ceremony due to so important and solemn a proceeding. Assisted by the labours as well as by the contributions of the faithful, the good priest was in high spirits; and as the close of the first day had seen the foundations set out and goodly piles of materials brought upon the ground ready for the future, he fell asleep congratulating himself upon having lived long enough to see the wish of his heart gratified.
What was his surprise, however, when, after 64 arising at the break of day, and immediately rushing to his window to gaze upon the work, he could not perceive either foundation or pile of stone, the field in which he expected to observe the promising outline being as green and showing as few marks of disturbance as the neighbouring ones. In this puzzled frame of mind, and with a heavy sigh, he once more courted sleep. He had not slumbered long, however, when loud knocks at the door of his dwelling and lusty cries for Father Ambrose disturbed him. Hastily attiring himself, he descended, to find a concourse of people assembled in front of the house; and no sooner had he opened the door than a mason cried out—.
The priest and his people at once set off to inspect the site, and sure enough it was in the state described by the mason; cowslips and buttercups decking the expanse of green, which took different shades as the zephyr swept over it. Th' warlt's gerrin' ter'ble wickit. We's hev' to bi lukkin' eawt for another Noah's flood, I warrant. A peal of laughter followed this sally, but Father Ambrose, who was in no mood for mirth, sternly remarked—'There is something here which savoureth of the doings of Beelzebub;' and then he sadly turned away, leaving the small crowd of gossips speculating upon 66 the events of the night.
Before the father reached his dwelling, however, he heard his name called by a rustic who was running along the road. The foundations of a church and all sorts of building materials have been laid in a field during the night, and Adam the miller is vowing vengeance against you for having trespassed on his land. The priest at once returned to the little crowd of people, who still were gaping at the field from which all signs of labour had been so wonderfully removed, and bade the messenger repeat the strange story, which he did at somewhat greater length, becoming loquacious in the presence of his equals, for he enjoyed their looks of astonishment.
When the astounding narrative had been told, the crowd at once started for Leyland, their pastor promising to follow after he had fortified himself with breakfast. When the good man reached the village he had no need to inquire which was Adam the miller's field, for he saw the crowd gathered in 67 a rich-looking meadow. As he opened the gate Adam met him, and without ceremony at once accused him of having taken possession of his field. True enough, the foundations were laid as at Whittle, and even the mortar was ready for the masons. Let each one carry what he can, and, doubtless, Adam will be glad to cart the remainder,'—a proposition the burly miller agreed to at once.
Accordingly each of the people walked off with a piece of wood, and Adam started for his team. Before long the field was cleared, and ere sunset the foundations were again laid in the original place, and a goodly piece of wall had been built. Grown wise by experience, the priest selected two men to watch the place during the night. Naturally enough, these worthies, who by no means liked the task, but were afraid to decline 68 it, determined to make themselves as comfortable as they could under the circumstances. They therefore carried to the place a quantity of food and drink, and a number of empty sacks, with which they constructed an impromptu couch near the blazing wood fire.
Notwithstanding the seductive influence of the liquor, they were not troubled with much company, for the few people who resided in the vicinity did not care to remain out of doors late after what Father Ambrose had said as to the proceeding having been a joke of Satan's. The priest, however, came to see the men, and after giving them his blessing, and a few words of advice, he left them to whatever the night might bring forth.
No sooner had he gone than the watchers put up some boards to shield them from the wind, and, drawing near to the cheerful fire, they began to partake of a homely but plentiful supper. Considering how requisite it was that they should be in possession of all their wits, perhaps it would have been better had not a large bottle been in such frequent requisition, for, soon after the meal was ended, what with the effects of the by-no-means weak potion, the warmth and odour sent forth by the crackling logs, and the musical moaning of the 69 wind in the branches overhead, they began to feel drowsy, to mutter complaints against the hardship of their lot, and to look longingly upon the heap of sacks.
That's fair, isn't it? To this question there was no response, for the old man was already asleep. The younger one immediately reached the huge bottle, and after drinking a hearty draught from it placed it within reach, saying, as he did so—. Before long he bowed his head upon his hands, and gazing into the fire gave way to a pleasant train of reflections, in which the miller's daughter played a by-no-means unimportant part. In a little while he, too, began to doze and nod, and the ideas and thronging fancies soon gave way to equally delightful dreams.
Day was breaking when the pair awoke; the fire was out, and the noisy birds were chirping their welcome to the sun. For a while the watchers stared at each other with well-acted surprise. Jacob, owd lad! The field was again clear, grass and meadow flowers covering its expanse, and after a long conference the pair determined that the best course for them to pursue would be that of immediately confessing to Father Ambrose that they had been asleep. Accordingly they wended their way to his house, and having succeeded in arousing him, and getting him to the door, the young man informed him that once more the foundations were missing.
To which awkward query the old man replied, that they did not see anything. This ended the colloquy, for Father Ambrose laughed heartily at the ready answer. Shortly afterwards, as on the preceding day, the messenger from Leyland arrived with tidings that the walls had again appeared in Adam's field. Again they were carted back, and placed in their original position, and once more was a watch set, the priest taking the precaution of remaining with the men until near upon midnight.
Almost directly after he had left the field one of the watchers suddenly started from his seat, and cried—. Both men gazed intently, and saw a huge cat, with great unearthly-looking eyes, and a tail with a barbed end. Without any seeming difficulty this terrible animal took up a large stone, and hopped off with it, returning almost immediately for another.
This strange performance went on for some time, the two observers being nearly petrified by terror; but at length the younger one said 72 —. When he reached the cat, which took no notice of his approach, he lifted his cudgel, and struck the animal a heavy blow on its head. Before he had time to repeat it, however, the cat, with a piercing scream, sprang upon him, flung him to the ground, and fixed its teeth in his throat. The old man at once fled for the priest. When he returned with him, cat, foundations, and materials were gone; but the dead body of the poor watcher was there, with glazed eyes, gazing at the pitiless stars.
After this terrible example of the power of the fiendish labourer it was not considered advisable to attempt a third removal, and the building was proceeded with upon the site at Leyland chosen by the spectre. The present parish church covers the place long occupied by the original building; and although all the actors in this story passed away centuries ago, a correct likeness of the cat has been preserved, and may be seen by the sceptical.
T HERE once lived in the little village of Hoghton two idle, good-for-nothing fellows, who, somehow or other, managed to exist without spending the day, from morn to dewy eve, at the loom.