This is the wrap-up of the story 'Homesdead'. The story began here.
The best way to begin this wrap-up, is to open with the sentiment that spurred on my writing of the story: gratitude. Thank you, my friends in Pampa, Texas, for your love and support. You know who you are. Several of you chose character names for this story, and cheered me on as I wrote your smiles and charm into the tapestry of my fictional world.
A few years ago, I hit a spiritual low point that I couldn't come back from alone. Even writing wasn't enough. Normally under those circumstances, I would have turned to the stage to cheer me up. This time, it didn't pan out. I talked to a good friend about my problems, and she came up with a unique solution. She talked to some friends in Pampa. And that's how I was introduced to the world of the Pampa Nutcracker. The men and women of the Pampa Civic Ballet welcomed me with warm hearts and open arms. It was exactly what I needed. Thank you.
I pulled a Hitchcock in this story, a little cameo. Here's a hint – last chapter, someone you haven't seen before.
My Pampa friends don't need the hint, of course. They know.
In the early parts of the story, our heroine and Charlotte talk about the lyrics of a Sonia Leigh song. They're referencing the artist's latest album, titled December 1978. It's loaded with great driving music. I listened to it during my last trip to Pampa, there and back again.
I actually have a specific 'Maryanne' playlist. It has tunes from Alabama, Asleep at the Wheel, Janis Joplin, Sonia Leigh, Sass Jordan, and odds 'n ends from soundtracks like Twister and Cars, to name a few. I don't listen to it when I write, but its my go to playlist when I drive.
Where this story fits in the big picture
This story stands out from the other UBA stories in the three ways. First, the geographic location within Texas is made very clear. Second, there's a healthy dose of Texas law thrown in and tied directly to the supernatural aspects. Three, there's a major timeline jump.
The first two aspects are what they are; I want to focus attention on the third. Part way into the story, Maryanne leaves Pampa and goes to Paris. She comes back despondent and taciturn. The focus of the short story is on events in Pampa, so events in Paris are not explained. Regular readers of this blog have heard Paris mentioned before...Absola emailed Maryanne from Paris. The chain of emails and attached documents, mentioned in the current story, were included in full in the story 'Doubled Jeopardy'. The details of Absola's adventures, and Maryanne's misadventures, will come in a later story.
In a previous blog entry I mentioned publishing Absola's Paris story soon, on the blog. Double change of plans – it won't be soon, and it won't be on the blog. I'll explain the why in the next blog entry.
The Vildru, while not actively present in this story, are far from forgotten. They're part of the main story arc that runs through the series. The development in this story: there are two factions of Vildru, and they've experimented on the same person. Maryanne knows who that person is, and regular readers may have already guessed. If you haven't guessed yet, read / re-read 'Doubled Jeopardy' and this story for the clues. And don't forget, our darlin' heroine has already made a mistake that leaves her and the rest of the UBA vulnerable. It's all connected.
We saw the departure of a long time UBA member during this story. Rest in peace, Anthony.
Hmm. Is that an appropriate thing to say to a dead ghost? And what is he now that he's no longer undead? Dead-dead? There's something to debate over a cup of joe.
Do note my choice of words. We did not say farewell. We said rest in peace. If I'm successful in bringing this series to my envisioned finale (in the distant future), there will be reason to recall the semantic distinction.
The next blog entry will address the future of the Undead Bar Association blog and stories. I hope you'll tune in.