By the Butterfly Tree: Prologue

Back in the summer of 2013, I began to write a serial story, which appeared on this blog in instalments. It was eventually finished in eighteen parts. I never expected it to be that long. It sort of warmed up, and ran away with me a bit. I rather enjoyed the exercise, to be honest. At the end of this post, I’ll give you a link to an explanation of how this story began. But first, there’s a small matter to clear up, namely, that this story never had a prologue. Now, real authors just about always put one in. I knew this, of course, so why didn’t I do the same?

Well, there’s just one good reason why not, and here it is: until I got beyond part six, I had no idea of how the story was going to turn out. So there you are.

Now, by and by, a prologue got written, and yet, so far, I’ve never published it. So, encouraged by a few prompts, here it is!

* * *

Not all summer days are warm and sunny. This was one such exception. A cloudy, overcast afternoon had given way to a rainy evening; something like what a native of Donegal, they tell me, would term ‘a soft class of a day’. Those of less idyllic turn of phrase would simply, at this point, refer to rain coming down in stair-rods.
In the living-room of a cosy cottage in a rural setting, a retired carpenter, who had made his way up to becoming manager, in his time, of the carpentry and joinery department of a large shipyard, was reading from some sheets of notepaper by the light of a table-lamp at the side of the well-used armchair in which he sat. In consideration of this sudden change in the weather, a wood fire now burned in the inglenook fireplace. On the opposite side of the fireplace sat his wife, in another similar armchair, with an assortment of sewing materials and various garments to mend arranged about her. As she watched her husband, a dreamy smile crossed her face as she reflected on the vista of feelings they shared…
Suddenly, he put down the hand-written sheets. As a puzzled frown crossed his face, he began to intently question her. Questions she could make no sense of. His erratic manner and tone, so foreign to him, frankly worried her. She had never seen him in this state, not ever.
“Are you all right, sweetheart?”
“I think I will be, in a minute or two.”
She grinned as he left the room, glancing out of the window as he did so. This was his stock reply when he meant he needed the toilet. But, instead of the the creaking of the stairs, she heard the rattle of the coat pegs of the hall stand, followed a few moments later by the click of the back door of the kitchen being opened, then shut with a bang.
“Really,” she muttered to herself, as she looked into her work-basket for dark green cotton, “At times, I think that accident must have turned his brain, after all.”
Her work-basket did not contradict her.

* * *

So, there you are. Let me know (below) if that entices you to read any more. Of course if it does, you’ll need that link I promised you. So, here it is. I flatter myself to suggest that if you’ve come this far down the page, you just might even click on it.

I’m linking this post to Friday Fiction at Nikki Young Writes.

Nikki Young Writes

Also, because the scene in the text above represents a fleeting moment in my story as a whole, I’m linking with ‘The Prompt’ by Sara from mumturnedmom here.

Oh, and it’s Tuesday…!


Edit, 27 June 2016:
Because this story was written just for fun, I’m linking it to…

The Pramshed
It's kind to share!

12 thoughts on “By the Butterfly Tree: Prologue”

  1. Yes, I definitely think this works as a prologue. You’ve set it up just right. A clearly ordinary couple, living their lives to a set routine and then right at the end, you’ve got the husband doing something completely unexpected to break that routine. It so obviously out of the ordinary for their lives that you have the reader asking the question ‘why?’ and ‘where could he possibly be going?’ And also you have the open question about the accident. Thanks for sharing on Friday Fiction.

  2. It definitely intrigued me Phil! I will have to have a look at that link I think. Was nice to meet you at BML16 too. Thanks for joining us again on #fortheloveofBLOG

  3. Oh I have read the prologue and the first part and I am now hooked! You write beautifully and I hope you realise that this means that my washing and tidying is going to have to take a back seat whilst I have a read (any excuse though…) Catherine x

  4. Great prologue. I think leaving until you know where the story is going makes sense, Writing doesn’t have to be done in order. #blogstravaganza

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