Category Archives: paranormal

Short Story (Dark Fantasy) Inspired by The Little Mermaid

This short story was originally published in the online fairy tale magazine, Enchanted Conversation . It is included in my fairy tale inspired paranormal short story collection: Supernatural Fairy Tales.

His Soul Inspiration
by Dorlana Vann

“Have you read this?” My husband, Philip, held the book of fairy tales I had bought from a used bookstore for my niece’s ninth birthday.

“Well, not that one, but I’ve read fairy tales before,” I said as I shut the door and stepped out of my heels.

He shook the hardback of nearly 500 pages. “Not like these.”

“Yeah, sure I have. ‘The Ugly duckling,’ ‘The Emperor’s New Suit,’ ‘The Little Mermaid’…”

“Right-right-right. These are them, but not like the ones I’m sure you’re thinking of. They’re not all fairy princesses and happy endings. They’re darker, full of hardship and pain and broken hearts.”

“All right,” I said. His excitement confused me because it didn’t match what I thought he was saying. “Do you think I should take it back and get Emily something else?”

“No. I mean, yes, you should get Emily something else. But no, don’t take this back.”

I scratched my head. “Are you okay?”

“I’m more than okay—I’m terrific!” He set the book down on the couch, wrapped his arms around me, and twirled us around. As he put me down, an amused smirk transformed into a wide smile and huge eyes. “The Little Mermaid!” he exclaimed.

Philip had been having a rough year, trying to find his inspiration to paint. This sudden strangeness made me queasy, and I was a little surprised that he had cracked before I had. Not that I didn’t respect his work, goals, and dreams, it’s just that I had some of my own. And working two jobs to support a starving artist had never been my plan.

 He had picked up the book again and was flipping through it when I decided to go run a bubble bath.

 “Syrena, here it is. I want to read this to you right fast.”

 “I’m really tired. I just want to go soak in the tub.”

“Please…. This is it. This is what I need to get me out of this slump. Please, just listen and see.”

 I sighed as softly as I could manage and took my place beside him on the couch. He began to read: “The Little Mermaid by Hans Christian Anderson… Far out in the ocean, where the water is as blue as the prettiest cornflower, and as clear as crystal, it is very, very deep…”

“Well, it’s definitely different than the Disney version,” I said after he had finished reading the tale. “I didn’t realize it was so sad.”

“Anything else?” He asked slowly.

I shook my head and shrugged.

“Her skin was as clear and delicate as a rose-leaf, and her eyes as blue as the deepest sea,” he quoted. “And she wrapped herself in her long, thick hair.”

“I’m sorry, Philip. I’m tired. I’m not getting what you’re getting at. Just tell me.”

“It’s you! You have to be my model.” His eyes sparkled, and he looked so happy, happier than I had seen him in a long time. I even felt a tinge of exhilaration myself. It had been awhile since he had asked me to model for him.

 “Okay.” I smiled. “Mermaids are topless, right?”

 He danced his eyebrows up and down. “You betcha.”

 “It sounds like fun. Saturday morning, I’m all yours.”

 “No, no, no. Now.” He stood up and held his hand out to me.

 “Now?” I whined.

 “I can’t take the chance of losing this, this feeling.”

 After a few seconds of staring into his imploring but loving eyes, I agreed by taking his hand and letting him lead me to the studio/guest room/home office. A few of his paintings hung on the walls: abstracts from his college years, pencil drawings sketched when we were on vacation at the beach, and one of me when we first met. The evening really made me think of that time, when he was so vigorous and full of dreams. When his passion oozed from his fingertips, and he saw the world differently than anybody I had ever met before; he noticed colors before shapes and talked in hues and aura, like others talked current events.

 It didn’t take him long to put me in position: on the floor leaning on my elbow, legs out beside me, and my hair down and draped over the front of me like a mermaid’s. I knew he was in his zone, no longer seeing me, but seeing through me and to my spirit.

“Beautiful.” He took his place behind the easel and white canvas.

Unable to see his face, only his arm as it gently followed the hand holding the paint brush, I knew not to talk, not to disturb him as he created the new, improved me. However, after what felt like hours, my mouth began to dry. I needed water. Surely, he would understand that I needed a little break—I opened my mouth to tell him, but my tongue was completely limp, and I couldn’t even swallow. The silly words from the story came to mind: “Then she cut off the mermaid’s tongue, so that she became dumb, and would never again speak or sing.”

 Trying to laugh at the thought, I felt a strange pinch in the middle of my stomach. An involuntary grunt finally came from my throat, and when I realized I could make this sound, I tried to get Philip’s attention, but he didn’t hear me—too focused in his work.

 I squeezed my eyes open and shut, trying to clear the buzzing that had begun in my head. And then I saw it…. waves of color beamed from me to Philip’s swooping arm. At first I thought it was the result of the light bulbs and my blinking, but it didn’t go away. It was dark outside, so there was no sun playing with the window’s glass. These streams of gold and red and blue were coming from me.

Suddenly, I felt a sharp pain run up my arm, and it couldn’t hold me up any longer. I collapsed. “…and it seemed as if a two-edged sword went through her delicate body: she fell into a swoon, and lay like one dead…” I thought Philip would soon look at me and tell me to sit up—but minutes passed, and he never glanced away from the canvas. The pain moved down to my legs and so did the beams of colorful light. “…she felt as if treading upon the points of needles or sharp knives.”

 As I grew weaker, my confusion faded. It became clear that if I didn’t get Philip’s attention, I would die, which promptly turned into: if I don’t stop Philip, I will die. “Haste, then; he or you must die before sunrise.”

 I pushed my torso up with wobbly arms, every muscle burning. I couldn’t feel my legs at all. “She has given us a knife: here it is, see it is very sharp. Before the sun rises you must plunge it into the heart of the prince; when the warm blood falls upon your feet… return to us to live.” I remembered the scissors on my desk behind me. I loudly grunted as I reached and grabbed them, dropping immediately back down. I lay there, time passing until I was able to pull myself by plunging the scissors into the carpet and using them as a means to move across the floor.

 With each breath, my lungs tightened as if the air itself was poison. I coughed and gagged, but still Philip did not stir. Finally, I lay beside him at his easel, taking a moment to gather some strength. The hand that held the scissors ached and so did my heart at the thought of what I had to do to survive. I used the rest of my might to pull myself up, leaning on my left hand, and brought the weapon behind my head with my right.

 When I shifted my view, the painting came into focus. It was complete, save for the sun. Philip dipped his brush into the yellow and orange mixture, and I examined The Little Mermaid, letting the scissors fall behind me as I marveled at her beauty. She was alive. This painting was Philip’s dream, his life’s work… his masterpiece.

 Easing the brush away from the bright sun, Philip whispered, “Finished,” as I fell into soft darkness…

 “…and then mounted with the other children of the air to a rosy cloud that floated through the aether.”

 

The End

 

Supernatural Fairy Tales

Supernatural Fairy Tales by Dorlana Vann

 

His Soul Inspiration is one of the stories from my fairy tale inspired paranormal short story collection: Supernatural Fairy Tales. .99 cent eBook available at Amazon.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Writing Diary Entry #4

June 22 – June 28

This week went to book 3 of my series. And I didn’t actually have a chance to write on it at the end of the week. I didn’t work on the fairy tale at all, and it doesn’t look good for this week either. I received some edits back from my editor, and so that will also go on this list – (it will also be measured as time spent.) So since this isn’t just a rough draft diary entry any longer, I will have a new title for these posts.

Trouble with Men Series book #3 – words written: 4283

What I find interesting about this book (and book 2) is that it wouldn’t exist without The Trouble with Snowmen. The main female character was only mentioned in Snowmen (book 1)  and the main male character has a minor role in The Trouble with Scarecrows (book 2) When I created their characters in the other books I didn’t know they would be the hero and heroine in this book. But while brainstorming they ended up being perfect opposites (which is the Tropes for the series) I’m not a pre-book character profiler – that’s work – yuck, and I have to get them into situations before I know how they will react. I’m over 12k in the book and have learned a lot about them. It has still been somewhat frustrating but I have to remember that frustration is a writer’s BFF. The story also took an unexpected turn. And now I have a few chapters that I have ideas for, which is always good.

YA Fairy Tale Inspired – time spent – 0 hours

Sorry backburner story ….

The Trouble with Scarecrows (book 2 Trouble with Men series) Time spent – 2 hours

I read over the notes and started working on edits for chapter 1 – I have some of my own changes also that I have been comparing with what edits were sent to me.

Love and Laughter,

Dorlana

Spring For Love: blog hop and giveaway – Featuring Author Dale Ibitz

spring for love blog hop Hi friends,

Welcome to the first day of the weekend long Spring for Love blog hop and giveaway!

My guest today is author Dale Ibitz. Dale was born in Oxford, Connecticut, grew up in the state of Washington, and then re-located back to Connecticut as an adult where she studied English at Central Connecticut State University. She never left, choosing Connecticut as her permanent home. Dale’s a fan of hiking and the outdoors, and she never, ever starts the day without chocolate and coffee (preferably together).

What does Dale like most about spring?

“Green. After a long winter of nothing but stark white, love the green that blooms. There’s no other green like spring-green!”

Dale Ibitz’s latest novel Kiss Me Dead is available on Amazon

Dalt Ibitz - KissMeDead

One curse …
Christian, a nineteen-year-old reaper-human hybrid enslaved to the Other World to harvest souls, earns his freedom by making a bargain with the Goddess of Death. As part of the bargain, he’s been cursed with the kiss of death.

One kiss …
The only way Christian can break his curse is for an angel to kiss him. Willingly. He finds Brooke, a nineteen-year-old descendant of a Naphil whose destiny is to hunt rogue reapers. But she’s hiding, suffocating in a semi-agoraphobic cocoon since witnessing a reaper steal her brother’s soul.

Two destinies …
Christian has found the angel who can break his curse, and the seduction begins. To break her phobia’s hold, Brooke embraces her angelic role and makes it her mission to kill rogue reapers, trying to avenge her brother’s murder.

 Christian can break his curse by kissing Brooke dead. Brooke can avenge her brother’s murder by killing Christian. Neither planned to fall in love.

Giveaway:

Visit the Spring for Love’s Rafflecopter to find out how you can win a $50.00 Amazon gift card or other fun gifts!  (Enter Here)

Visit Dale Ibitz on the web:

Website
Facebook
Twitter
GoodReads
Amazon Author Central
Pinterest

More books by Dale Ibitz:

Last Moon Rising Boxset (Books 1 -3)

Blood Tied (Last Moon Rising #4)

Thanks for visiting! Stop by tomorrow; I will be featuring author Jo Richardson. And make sure to visit all the participating author’s websites for more chances to win and to get the info on new and upcoming titles from Soul Mate Publishing.

Love and laughter,

Dorlana

My Poor Neglected Back-Burner Story

I started writing the rough draft for my Hansel and Gretel inspired young adult book back in February 2010. I’ve worked on it off and on throughout the years – although most of 2014 past without me even opening the file – but my progress keeps getting interrupted by different projects, like in 2012 when the idea for The Trouble with Snowmen (Trouble with Men series summer 2015) hit me, and it wouldn’t let me go until I finished writing it … and then, you know, I had to write book 2 (The Trouble with Scarecrows).

A few months ago, I dusted it off and read over it, and these were some of my thoughts:

  • I should have taken better notes.
  • My rough drafts are more like outlines. Unfinished, vague outlines …
  • It doesn’t matter where I intended this story to go before, it will either come back to me or new ideas (better ones hopefully) will emerge.
  • The concept is solid, I can work with this.

This has been my main project but now I have something else tapping me on the shoulder – book 3 of the Trouble with Men series – But I want to at least get finished with a solid rough draft … or at least take better notes. Well, hopefully one day this poor story will make it to second draft!

Love and Laughter,
Dorlana

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