Creepy dollhouse in the garden story, just because.

My grandmother Phyllis used to always talk about writing a story about a dollhouse in a garden. It’s a sweet idea, once that I’ve tossed around in the back of my head for years, but for some reason, the narrative always turns . . . creepy.

Here’s another attempt starting:

The dollhouse in the garden was there when Alyssa moved into the old farmhouse she’d rented. She could see the dark grey roof peeking through the tops of the wild raspberry bushes and the rhubarb leaves, and when the wind blew aside the masses of flowering yarrow, its weathered red shutters and bleached wood walls were visible, too. But in between all of the unpacking and sorting and painting and cleaning things to do, the garden in the small backyard was neglected and she never got around to investigating the dollhouse up close. 

But on days when the rain poured down, she felt it there. The word she would have used was “watching”, even though that was clearly sily. Dollhouses didn’t have eyes. Those glimpses through the waving greenery had on occasion showed glassless miniature windows between the decorative shutters, but that’s all they were: windows. And not even real windows. Facsimiles in 1′:1″ scale. She was an adult and it was a plaything. Ridiculous even to think that it had anything resembling a personality or — dare she say it — a soul.

So she went about her business, setting up her first real grown-up home and letting the grass in the backyard grow long and wild. 

Alyssa sat one night beside the gas fireplace with a glass of wine. The season had turned cold and stayed that way, but she’d noticed a change in the colour of the leaves so the chill in the air made sense. She’d lost track of the days, even with the calendar on the fridge firmly marking her first day of work at the new job. With fall coming, and her internship about to begin at the hospital, the backyard was soon going to be a mess of dead foliage and drying leaves. That would be the best time to clean it out, right before the snow flew and buried it all for six months.

And she would be able to set the dollhouse by the road for either garbage pickup or someone to try to fix.

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In which I ruminate on a fresh story idea and upcoming things to do

Imagine if there was a little girl whose tangled hair could catch fairies?

While working on getting my 9 year old to take a bath and brush her hair, that’s what I said to her, and it called to mind all kinds of interesting images and possibilities.

Like, what would happen if Bridget’s hair was a fairy-net? She’d go running across a field or through a trail in the woods, and come out with one or two of the Wee Folk waving from behind her ears, calling to be let free. Worse than touching your hair and feeling a mosquito or a deerfly buzzing around back there! I mean, that’s alarming enough, to reach back and where you expect nothing but softness and maybe an elastic or barrette come loose, there’s a tumbling, vibrating, bumbling creature bouncing against your fingers or the palm of your hand. If it were a fairy, though, or a pixie, or a leprechaun, would there also be hell to pay? Or would they be understanding of the mistake?

Some people are particularly attractive to mosquitoes. What if someone was attractive to supernatural creatures, through no fault of his/her own?

I’m thinking it’s a a great story idea and now it’s floating around in my head, wanting a plot line and characters and a rich setting to play in. I’ll put a pin in it, as the saying goes now, as I’ve got to get other things done first.

How would you brush fairies out of your hair, though? Would their wings get caught? Maybe if it was curly . . . They might not like the smellĀ of the leftover shampoo fragrance. What if the person who owned the hair didn’t even notice the fairies at first! How would you explain that to the poor little things, watching a great big comb coming down at them? Minding their own business, working happily around the forest, visiting relatives and picking up roots and berries for supper, when a great wind comes up and blows them into a tangled web of silky strands. At first, they think it’s a spider’s web — would that be a fairy’s greatest fear, to be caught by an untamed spider? — but quickly learn it’s something else entirely. It’s a human’s hair.

Would time flow differently for a fairy, being so small? What seems like hours to them might be only minutes for us. So upon being caught up in the hair, the fairies might have to resort to drastic means for freedom.

Makes me think of the Spiderwick Chronicles. I enjoy those stories. I’ve also got the Squished Fairy Book, and I love reading Jenny Twist’s story, Away With the Fairies. Hubby showed me a video tonight, too, taken by a mother who claims she saw a tiny man running through her kitchen.

Yup. I’ve been hit with the next thing to work on as a WIP, already. Not even a day out of the last one.

Meanwhile, I’ve got the Ottawa ComicCon trip in one week (yikes!), plus sharing carpooling of our 14 year old with another boy to referee training sessions this weekend (sadly, the timing is such that we won’t get to see Avengers: Age of Ultron right away), and I’m auditioning for a part in Shakespeare in the Park, so I have to work on my monologue and playing my French horn. Hubby did a lovely job of starting our spring cleaning in the house, so that needs to be kept going, and progress reports for the month have to go out on Monday, thus I must spend a few hours finalizing marks and reading blogs. Tomorrow I have to remember to pick up waffles and fixings, plus decorations, for my writing students’ Camp NaNoWriMo Wrap-Up party, and decide who will receive buttons as awards for different things.

And it’s Beltane tomorrow. My old University coven is getting together, hours away from here, and I wish I could be with them to celebrate. At least, for this fire festival, the snow is mostly off the ground. It could be possible to follow the tradition of bathing my face in the first morning dew, if it’s not frosty out. That’s something else that needs tending this weekend, or after work: my gardens need cleaning up and clearing out for fresh planting. And I need to plan out the expansion. I want to add two or three more beds this year, as I work to make the most of our backyard space.

Hope I don’t get anything caught in my hair, short as it is. Bugs or fairies. I don’t need itchy bites, burning stings, or Wee Folk curses hurled in my direction!

Oh, and still no title for the Snowmobile Story. It’ll come to me. Been getting suggestions from students, too.