This is part 11 of a multi-part story initiated by Bruno as a Digital Writing Month (#DigiWriMo) activity.
To read the whole story follow the thread: Bruno, Kevin, Maha, Sarah, Ron, Tanya, Kay, Ron, Dana, Tania, until you arrive here. For a mapping of participants check here. If you would like to participate add your name to the Google doc.
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The icy lake was no lake at all. It was the ocean at freeze up!
The tide was receding quickly as Sarah, Kevin, and Kevin’s shy neighbour Maha, found themselves bobbing in a freighter canoe out in Frobisher Bay. Instinctively each of them tucked their necks into their shoulders and drew their arms in closer to their bodies as the chilly air caught their breath. The light was fading quickly with a promise of an extra cold November-long night.
Worried more about survival than solving mysteries, Kevin was the first to notice the thermos of tea and package of hard tack pilot biscuits in the hull of the canoe. With numb fingers he fumbled as he opened the package. Meanwhile Sarah grabbed the thermos and poured tea into the single cup that the three, still somewhat stunned, adventurers would have to share.
The ever-dreamy Maha was secretly thrilled at the thought of a common cup of tea. Seemingly in a world of her own she snuggled closer to Kevin, and started humsinging a plaintive tune as she turned her eyes skyward.
Kevin finally managed to opened the pilot biscuit box and, much to his surprise, out tumbled a partial star chart, a thimble full of sand, and an antique whale-ivory double-one domino.
Maha was all attention now. Her critical analytical mind, her years of scholarship, her status as an amateur astronomer, they all coalesced into the realization that she had a key part to play in solving the map mystery.
Her mind was spinning; ocean, ice, pilot biscuit, double-one, time warp, star chart. Even the tune she had been humming felt important . . .
Suddenly she sat bolt upright and yelled into the frozen Arctic air,
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To be continued . . . . On to Sue ! You can find part 12 here
1st photo: personal photo – looking out at Frobisher Bay from the beach in Apex.
2nd photo: retrieved from https://www.liveauctioneers.com/item/8632559_antique-ebony-and-bone-dominoes-set-ed653
Maureen, this is awesome and in the true spirit of Exquisite Corpse and story jumping. I love how you built up the energy and tension and then presented the mystery. Can’t wait to see what happens with the next story jumper. (And we here at Young Writers Project are getting a bit worried about how long this thing is going to be by the time WE get it. )
Thanks so much for your comment on my story. Turns out you were not alone in wanting me to tell more about that trip. So I will.
Take care and so good to make connection with you.
Love this story. Love how you, in the true spirit of Exquisite Corpse and Story Jumper, you’ve built up tension and then given me a nice turn. Can’t wait to see the next chapter (though we here at Young Writers Project (http://youngwritersproject.org) are getting a little worried at how long this puppy is getting! It’s going to be quite a process for us to read it all and come up with an ENDING!)
Thanks for your comment on my story today at http://geoffreygevalt.com … You are not alone in wanting me to continue, so I plan to serialize in some way. So check back.
Nice to connect with you.
I was impatient to see how you would continue the story, Maureen, especially since, when I introduced happenings and things I didn’t really know where it was all headed. Love the artifacts, the double one domino – antique whale ivory!
I don’t envy subsequent writers who have to tie these things together!
Tania, This was a lot of fun. As I read your contribution I had no idea of where I would go but the boat in the icy lake set me off.
Such a fun adventure, seeing where people take these twists and turns..there is often a key trigger point in the previous story that you can use to jump off from; it’s always interesting to see which point people choose, and where they then go with it.
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Tanya, it was Sarah’s ukulele that triggered my thoughts. Also Maha as amateur Astronomer from Maureen’s story sparked an image of a gracious Marc Chagall like character floating over the scene.
Maureen, curious about the domino imagery. Switching places with Yin I had an urge to re-purpose it as a mahjong tile but too much like Maha to pull off. Now it has fixed itself in my mind as a Nanaimo Bar which we can switch calling Tofino Hardtack if the story comes north again.
Scott, It felt to me as if the whole Exquisite Corpse storyjumping adventure was a game of dominoes. We each tried to use something from the prior episode and the took our portion off in our own direction. Old sets of dominoes were often made of whale ivory and that seemed to fit with where my segment was located. The double-one was deliberate. It is minimalist, sometimes is viewed as a set of eyes AND it ties into the sinking of the Titanic in 1911 (I wasn’t sure if anyone would pick up on the date reference but I thought I would put is in just in case). Just for fun – the link in the story that highlights the words “pilot biscuit” is another Titanic reference.
I loved all your clever references, Maureen.
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