Death’s Apprentice – Part Three

I’d got no cash on me, so I ran down to the cash point on the corner of Archer’s road, leaving Lola at the vets in case I “did one” without paying. I punched my pin number into the machine and groaned as it flashed back that I was now only five pound off my agreed overdraft limit. I clicked on the thirty-pound button and waited for the machine to vomit out my cash. I needed a job, and quick, especially now that I’d been kicked out of school. And I needed to get Lola out of that shit hole.

Somehow.

Easier said than done when you had the surname Bones and the shithead for your stepdad.

I stuffed the money in my pocket and turned to go back to the vets just as the sky gave up its load again. Shit. I began to walk down the street as bus trundled past, its wheels hit a pot hole and sent a shower of filthy water all over me.

‘For fuck’s sake!’ I said, jumping to the side as the water cascaded over me. I was red hot inside, boiling anger simmering in my belly. Water had collected in a dip on the path. I aimed a kick at it and water shot into the air and splattered on the window of Crow’s Funeral Home. There was a small sign sellotaped to the inside of the glass which read:

Help wanted, hours variable, apply within.

Maybe God did exist after all.

I had to get Lola first. Couldn’t take the chance of the vet reporting us; that would mean a good kicking for Lola if the RSPCA came round and talked to shithead. He’d probably go for Mom too now that he knew I’d fight back.

I ran down the street as quickly as I could, handed the money over to the receptionist and waited for the printer to eventually churn out the receipt. And then waited for the vet to bring Lola out. Her tail started to wag as soon as she saw me. I thought it might fall off. She looked brighter now, but even so, the vet seemed reluctant to give her back. His hand hovered mid-air, holding her lead tightly.

‘Joe.’

‘Yes?’

‘A dog isn’t a toy. They’re not playthings to take our frustrations out of, do you understand?’

I stared into his blue eyes. My heart ripped in my chest. Tears threatened to spill like the rain outside.

‘I would never hurt her,’ I said, ‘she’s the only thing that’s ever shown me love.’ I grabbed the lead from his hand and ran out of the door before I betrayed myself any more. Real men don’t talk. Real men don’t feel.

Advertisements

Death’s Apprentice. Part Two. A Writing Experiment.

The sky burst. Rain crashed down around me, soaking me to the bone in a matter of seconds, and throwing up the scent of damp earth, decaying rubbish and rotten eggs as it churned up the water.

Come on Lola, where are you? I peeled my saturated hood from my head and held my hand up to my face to shield my eyes from the downpour.

‘Lola! Come on girl. Come on good girl!’

I thought I heard something, a whimper coming from behind me. I spun on my heels and saw a flash of white skin from beneath scrub at the base of an oak tree. I jogged over, my heart racing.

I removed the branches and weeds and found Lola cowering and whimpering, her tail flicking across the dirt.

‘Hey, there you are, come on,’ I said, stroking her head, ‘that’s a good girl.’ I reached into my pocket and fetched out a small dog biscuit, and offered it to her. Slowly she crawled out from her shelter and took the biscuit from my hand. I ran my hands along her wet fur; she was shaking. ‘What’s a matter girl? What’s he done to you?’ She rubbed her face against my leg. She smelled of dirt and wet dog.

‘That’s a good girl,’ I said, checking her ribs and legs. Everything seemed ok, but I wasn’t sure, and I didn’t trust him.

I clipped her lead onto her collar. ‘Come on Lola, let’s get you checked out.’ I gripped on to her lead tightly, my knuckles turning white as I thought about what he might’ve done to her. Shit head. If I found out he’d…I’d fucking kill him. I gently pulled on her lead and she followed me obediently, if slowly. Her legs seemed fine, but her head was low. She wasn’t her usual bouncy self.

There was a vet in town, about ten minutes away. I’d have to take her there. Make sure. I needed to make sure. I clenched my free hand into a fist. He’d pay. Somehow I would make him pay.

I managed to get Lola in to see the vet. He didn’t want to see her; he knows about my old step-man. Knows he’s no good. Probably threatened him, or broke in and stole some gear. In the end, he took her into the consultation room and gave her the once over. I didn’t tell him what I thought had happened and he didn’t ask. Ten minutes later Lola was given a clean bill of health, and I came out with a thirty-pound bill and a warning that if I hurt my dog again he’d report me. I hadn’t hurt her, but I didn’t argue, as much as it killed me inside that anyone would think that. No one believed anyone who was related to my shithead stepdad. And no one believed anything a member of the Bones family said. Looked like I was doubly fucked.

A Writing Experiment?

I thought I’d try a little experiment. Every Wednesday I’ve decided I’m going to start posting a section of another piece of writing from a novel I’m working on. It might just be a sentence, a couple of lines, a paragraph or two, or a couple of A4 pages. The story has a working title of Death’s Apprentice. I haven’t done much planning in regards to this story so I don’t have many details and I shall be writing it as I go along, by the seat of my pants. I’ve never written in this way before and I usually do loads of planning so I’m well out of my comfort zone. This inevitably means that there will be loads of mistakes, loads of plot holes and I will forget things but, in the end, I will hopefully have a rough draft to refine and work with (fingers crossed :)).

I’ve decided there are no rules. I’m going to write what comes to me and I’d like you to come along for the ride. Please comment if you want to, all suggestions are welcome 🙂

Let’s see what happens!!

Death’s Apprentice

Clouds gathered above, heavy with rain, and dark, like my mood. I pulled my hood over my head and continued walking down the dirt path, Lola’s black leather lead clasped tightly in my hand. He’d done it on purpose, I knew it, despite all of his bitching otherwise. He’d left the back gate open, I could see it in his shitty brown eyes. In the curl of his lips as he told me she was missing.

It was payback.

I looked at my right hand clutching the lead; my knuckles were still red and angry and swollen. I smiled. He’d come off worse; his eyes were as black as the clouds above me. I think I’d broken his nose. He deserved it. Lola didn’t.

I kicked at a stone on the path. It flew through the air and landed with a plop in the canal. I watched water ripple out from the point of impact, ever-increasing circles stretching out across the muddy brown surface. Rain began to tumble from the sky and pock-mark the water. A white-beaked coot scooted into the reeds to get away from the impending downpour.

Where was Lola?

‘Lola!’ I shouted. I thought she’d be here. ‘Lola!’

A train rumbled by, shaking the green railings that blocked off the canal and scrubland from the railway tracks. Dried, brown leaves were kicked into the air as it rushed by. The air stilled, and quietness descended upon the wasteland.

‘Lola!’ My stomach rolled. I thought I would’ve found her here, in her favourite place. I cast my eyes around the scrub, desperate to find her. What if…what if he hadn’t just let her out? What if…

The sky burst. Rain crashed down around me, soaking me to the bone in a matter of seconds, and throwing up the scent of damp earth, decaying rubbish and rotten eggs as it churned up the water.

 

 

 

Pain Distraction – Resin Skull Pendant Project

Resin skulls for pendants or keychain

I like to use skull imagery in my jewellery. Here I’m going to show you how to make a cool keychain or apotropaic skull charm.

Apotropaic means to avert, so these pendants are designed to avert evil. Perhaps the most familiar apotropaic symbol is the evil eye. Many cultures have charms made from eyes, called Evil Eyes or nazars, which are designed to protect the wearer from misfortune or injury from the evil eye curse.

IMG_0529

You can see this necklace on Etsy. The above necklace can be found here.

What you will need:

Protective gloves,

Skull mould,

Epoxy Resin (here I’m using Gedeo Crystal Resin, a two part resin),

Colourant (I’m using a Mica powder from Amazon),

Embellishments of your choice (I’m using an irisdescent flower and rhinestones I purchased from Amazon),

A silver bail (if making a pendant),

Split ring and Lobster Clasp (if making a keychain),

E6000 glue.

Please note: I buy a lot of my supplies from Amazon because it’s easy and works for me. However, there are other suppliers out there. I am not being paid to promote Amazon, its products, or any other supplier.

Method:

  1. Find a skull mould that you like. I brought this skull ice cube mould from Amazon. I only use the front of the mould (the part with the front of The skull) because I want the back of the pendant to lay flat against my skin. If you’re using a silicone mould there’s no need to use a release spray. I’m using a silicone mould so the pendant will pop out quite easily once it’s cured. This is the one I use:IMG_1602
  2. Mix your resin up, making sure you’re wearing your protective gloves. I use Gedeo resin which mixes really well and produces very little bubbles. Refer to your manufacturer’s instructions for mixing up any other resin. Gedeo uses one part hardener to two parts resin. Mix thoroughly, then mix again. Usually, this takes around three minutes.

     

  3. Add your colourant. Here I’ve used a mica powder from Aond that I found on Amazon. The powder comes in little sachets with a handy little scoop included. You only need a little of the powder, so it’s best to put in a little bit then add more if needed. It’s better to add it bit by bit because you can control the colour and the intensity of it more effectively. For this skull, I used the colour Magic Gold. I love the fact it looks like white chocolate once it’s cured. It also has a very attractive and delicate shimmer to it. IMG_1604Give the mixture a really good stir to ensure the colourant is distributed evenly. Now pour the coloured resin into your mould.
  4. Leave to cure for 24 hours (Curing is the process in which a chemical reaction takes place to produce a hard product at the end). It’s a good idea to cover with a bowl, or something like that, to stop dust and hairs becoming trapped and embedded in the drying resin.
  5. Make sure it feels dry on the bit that’s exposed after 24 hours. If it is, gently pop the skull from its mould.
  6. I usually leave the skulls for another 24 hours before I decorate or add hanging bails (Bails are made from metal and are attached to the back of the pendant. They have a loop on top which can be used to hang the pendant). You can use the skull plain, like these:       IMG_1318I’ve attached a split ring to the bails on these pendants to turn them into cool keychains. You can see them/ buy them on Etsy.
  7. Or hang from a chain, or a leather thong necklace, as I’ve done here:

    You can buy these on Etsy.

    Or make into keychains like this:

    Here, I took the skull out of the mould a little earlier and left it out to settle. This has produced a flatter, more authentic looking Day of the Dead pendant:

IMG_0754.JPG

I love this skull. See this item here on Etsy.

Here’s a gallery of some of my other work:

Do you like skulls? What kind of skulls would you make?

You can see my whole range of skulls on Etsy.