Today is my stop on the Wrecker blog tour, I have extract from the beginning of the book to share with you all. I hope you enjoy reading it and getting a taste of what the book is about. Don’t forget to check out the other dates on the tour. If love to hear your thoughts in the comments, happy reading!
I got to the beach too late to find anything of real worth. The gale had moved inland, leaving an icy breeze in its wake, and there was a sea stench as if the ocean bed and all its secrets had been torn out overnight and dumped on the strand. All about me the dead from shipwrecks past muttered and moaned in the tongues of their own lands. Having shaken themselves free of their unblessed graves, they shuffled about in search of some lost thing. Look upon them too long, and they’d fade into the mist that sailed across the strand.
A dead wreck it was, all hands drowned. Sounds of hacking and wrenching floated over to me on the gusts, as my neighbours took the ship apart, plank by plank. All that was left was the bare ribs of the hull, stuck between Jack and Jill, two rocks that stood like monsters’ teeth at the western end of the cove. The ship’s bottom was torn out and her timbers lay in piles. Alongside, casks and boxes waited, and ponies and carts laden with plunder filed from the ship up the steep track to the headland. It wasn’t the first time I’d seen a ship picked clean in a single tide.
I rubbed the grit of sleep from my eyes and tied back my hair, casting my gaze all about me to make sure I was alone. On the sand a few passengers lay among the dead, but my neighbours had already stripped the corpses for the most part. Among the bodies lay cabin furniture and fittings, lengths
of pipe, a binnacle and other nautical instruments of some use unknown to me. Jellyfish lay all over, like plates of glass with the grey sky trembling inside them. Queerest of all were the hundreds of oranges scattered among the corpses as if they’d rained down from the heavens. They were all the
more vivid in a world grey and tired as an old garment with the colour washed out. I took my kerchief from my shoulders and scooped as many as I could carry into it.
A few yards away I saw a human hand lying palm down on the sand. Thinking it might crawl towards me and grab my ankle, I hurried off. Nearby was a severed foot still in its shoe and such other gobbets of human flesh as could hardly be named. Dogs’ barks pierced the air off to the east where
hounds were mauling a corpse. My best hope was to move out towards the ebbing tide, where I might find a body freshly washed ashore. As luck would have it, down where the sand was still wet and glistening I found a fine-looking man stretched out. I wove a path towards him, willing myself to
touch every corpse I passed for luck. The gentleman wore a dark suit, so sombre he must have had an inkling he was on the way to his funeral when he dressed himself. A well-built fellow he was. If you stood him up he’d be head and shoulders above any man in the village, apart from the giant, Pentecost. I wondered how long he’d struggled in the cold water.
It grew lighter by the minute. Pale lichen showed on the rocks, pink crystal glinted in the seams of the cliffs and the rising sun lit the dead man’s face. His dark hair lay across his cheek, covered in a slick pale rime. There was a gash down one cheek and a shadow of stubble on his chin. There was
no smell off him yet, fresh out of the sea as he was. I crossed myself to show contrition before digging into his sodden trouser pockets, searching his wrists and inside his jacket, but I found only a pocket book, the pages stuck together, which I threw aside, and a watch on a silver chain which was
full of sea water. Time had stopped and God had turned his back on the world.
Wrecker is published by HQStories and available to buy from 12/07/2018