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      Something Wicked This Way Comes...   10/09/2019

      The Autumn Supporter Giveaway!       Welcome to the very first of the seasonal BCF supporter giveaways! This month also marks one year since I took on the forum, so I want to say an extra huge thank you to all of you for keeping this place going. I have a little bit more to say about that later but, for now, let's get to the giveaway!     The Autumn Giveaway winner will be getting two Penguin Little Black Classics, The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe and To Be Read At Dusk by Charles Dickens. Both of these little books contain three atmospheric short stories, perfect for autumnal evenings. The winner will also get Mary Shelley tea (a lavender and vanilla black tea) from Rosie Lea Tea's Literary Tea Collection (https://www.rosieleatea.co.uk/collections/literary-tea-collection) and a chocolate skull, to really get that spooky atmosphere .   and...   A special treat for a special month. The winner will choose one of the following recent paperback releases from the independent bookshop Big Green Bookshop:       The Wych Elm by Tana French A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan Melmoth by Sarah Perry The Familiars by Stacey Halls  The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White   The winner will be chosen via the usual random selection process in one week. Patreon supporters are entered automatically. If you aren't a patreon supporter but you'd like to join in with this giveaway, you can support here: https://www.patreon.com/bookclubforum.   I really hope you're all going to like this introduction to the seasonal giveaways. It's been a lot of fun to put together. Other chocolate skulls may have been harmed during the selection process…     
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poppy

Continue the Story Game

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This is a fun game for anyone who'd like to join in.  Add as much or as little as you like to the story, just try to leave it open for the next person to take in whatever direction they choose :D

Edited by poppy

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Bertram Wilberforce sat staring disconsolately out the window. At thirty-five he felt life was rather overlooking him in the excitement department. Working as a lowly clerk, for a measly wage, at Hinkinbotham, Botham and Hink's Actuary Ltd, didn't exactly have the makings of enthralling adventure. But that was all about to change when into the office walked Miss Trixie Trixiebell, accompanied by her ...

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stern supervisor, Annabelle Chiffon.

An aroma of fuchsia, roses and hydrangeas suffused the office.

Bertram knew his old boss, Gavin Callmenames , was leaving.

He didn't know that two women were coming in to replace him.

"Good morning" , chorused the women and Bertram in unison, smiles abundant.

"Can I....

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"...assume, Annabelle, that this is the young lady you told me about?"

 

"You may, and you'd be correct. You will report directly to Trixie but I am moving into this department too and we shall be sharing responsibility for your...

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development in the role.

You will understand Bertram that we are committed to the fulfilment of certain obligations. Mr Callmenames was thick, bullish, and crude. As for now, we move forward. We will together....

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restructure. Actuaring will henceforth only be a front for our undercover detective agency. You, Bertram, have been assessed as an excellent undercover agent. You are nondescript, mousy and dull, in short, easily overlooked and dismissed as you go about your investigations. Bertie was torn between indignation at Ms Chiffon's rude and abrasive manner and ...

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...pride. Now his father might finally have some respect for him and stop bragging about his exploits in some foreign, far flung war. Now it's time to show him that he, Bertram Horace Wilberforce, could live up to the family name and expectations. He would soon show them what an undercover agent looks like. He couldn't wait to announce to his father that the son would outdo the father a hundred times.

 

Then it dawned on him: that conversation could never take place if he were to become the greatest undercover agent since...

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an agent has as a fundamental part of his duty, to keep a secret when involved in undercover work.

That notwithstanding, he went to the staff room and texted his old father Billy Jackie Wilberforce.

"Dad I am now an undercover detective.Yeeeesss..joy untold awaits.

I cannot describe how happy and joyful I am with it.

Bertie."

Edited by itsmeagain

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'Proud of you, my boy, proud! Wait till I tell all my chums here at the club!' William, or Billy Boy as his fellow cronies at the Pspraggstonehaugh's Gentleman's Club called him, was often to be found there. He liked to escape from Bertie's mother, Hortense, a fine woman in most ways, but inclined to try to organise him with long lists of jobs. He was quite safe there as she could never remember how to spell the club's name. Bertie groaned and ...
 

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texted back "No dad this is top secret..stop it now."

And so Billy stopped. He didn't tell his friends.

Back in the office, Trixie and Annabelle were in the corner, whispering over a map.

Edited by itsmeagain

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Bertie was tempted to go and look over their shoulders, but he was still rather intimidated by Annabelle Chiffon or Ms Mastodon as he secretly called her. But it wasn't long before she imperiously commanded him to join them.

'See this, Bertram,' she said, jabbing a well manicured scarlet talon at a point on the map, 'I want you and Trixie to go here, act as a courting couple, no hanky panky, mind!' Bertie blushed bright red, he'd never so much as had a girlfriend, let alone engage in any kind of hanky panky. 'When you get there,' Annabelle continued, ' ...

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you will get out of Trixie Trixiebell's car and begin pretending to kiss her."

"You mean kiss?" asked Bertie , feeling his number was up at last. Kiss kiss kiss ..mmmmm...Bertie agreed, eyeing as he did the...

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undeniable charms of Trixie.

'You're not listening Wilberfarce! Pay attention!' barked Annabell.

'Force, Ms Chiffon, Force.'

Annabell ignored him and continued, 'Whilst pretending to kiss, you will both observe the comings and going of a certain establishment by the name of Danglebean and Fly. Get vehicle registrations and ...

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...surreptitiously photograph all comings and goings.'

 

Bertie's brain hurt. How could he note down registrations, photograph a hive of activity and give Trixie a five star smacker at the same time? One of those things would have to go...

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and Bertie would hope to sneak some strong kissing into the equation. This man was not about to relinquish the chance of kissing the delightful Trixie, looking......

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...at his desk, he saw his mobile phone. It Dawned on him that he could photograph car registrations and people coming in and out of Danglebean & Fly's whilst still being able to kiss the delightful Trixie. Now, he was thinking like a spy!  And what's more, though Bertie, I;ll still have one hand free to...

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rather awkwardly juggling the cigarette he was smoking because he thought it gave him a cool, devil-may-care kind of dynamism. Unfortunately, this view wasn't shared by Trixie when ...

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so pointy and high-heeled, they guaranteed bunions and hammertoe or at the very least, a sprained ankle.  

She teetered towards him unsteadily and did a final lurch, giving him the ideal opportunity to ...

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catch her and squeeze her round assets. Yet the fag he was smoking did not endear him to her and Trixie squealed "Cor love a duck for God's sake ....

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watch where you're waving that thing, Bertie, you near had me eyebrows singed to a crisp!'

Just then,  (Poppy does google search, what cars do gangsters drive? :giggle2: ) a black Mercedes S600, with dark tinted windows, purred up to Danglebean and Fly. Out hopped ...

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Graham "Bling Swing" Davis, 35, thug, with greasy brown hair, sunglasses, and a demeanour exuding menace.

 

"Look he's there ", whispered Trixie.Yet Bertie lunged his lips at Trixie, causing her to leap .....

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like a startled rocket and knocking Bertie's phone, held at the ready to snap 'Bling Swing' as he entered the premises of Danglebean and Fry,  through the air where it hit the cobbled pavement and exploded in a myriad of metal, plastic, glass and sundry other materials.

'Now look what you've done!' hissed Bertie.

'You shouldn't spring at me like that!' Trixie hissed back. Fortunately ...

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Bling Swing was oblivious, marching nonchalantly into the offices of Danglebean and Fry.

"Oh Trixie we are meant to be lovers" declared Bertie in a disappointed way.

He eyed her evident charms wryly.

"Oh I'm...

Edited by itsmeagain

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