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A Peculiar Party ~ Part Two March 23, 2013

Posted by nrhatch in Fiction, Magick & Mystery, Word Play.

IMGP3544bI struggled to regain my equilibrium, but the ground kept shifting ‘neath my feet.

Like quicksand.

Finally finding my footing, I stared long and hard at Freddie.

Caught in my headlights, he looked as if he was about to croak.

That struck me as funny.  I giggled.  And then launched into cross-examination mode.

“What’s going on, Freddie?”

He blinked, as if to shake off the mental fog that enveloped us both.  “Objection.  That question assumes facts not in evidence.”

“Well, we’re not in a court of law.”

His grin hinted of grimace.  “And I’m not under oath.”

“Seriously, Freddie.  I’m getting worried.  You invited me down here for a party and there are no guests.”


“Of course there are.”

I glanced about the empty garden.  “Where?”

Freddy pointed at me. “You’re our guest.”

“Well, then, perhaps you could offer me a chair. That drink Teddy served me was a rather potent potable.”

“It’s not the drink.  Or Teddy.  It’s a bit more complicated than that . . . ”  His voice trailed off, silence settling on a lily pad as if readying for a sunset sail.

I watched for unspoken words as I waited.

Freddie cleared his throat.  “You’re right.  You need to sit.  And then I’ll fill you in on the goings on.”  Freddie motioned to Teddy who hopped into the fountain, clothes and all.


I peered into the water and saw nothing.

No Teddy.
No lily pad.
No thing.

What the . . . ?

Before I could voice my concern, Teddy surfaced with a sudden splash, sitting astride a dolphin.

The dolphin hopped out of the pool, grinned at me, and flipped up its tail.

“Seat, madam?”

Too astonished to say anything, I sat.
And grinned back.

Freddie squatted next to me.  “There’s something happening here.  What it is ain’t exactly clear.”

“That’s why you invited me down.”

“Yes.  We’re hoping you can help us sort it all out.”

question-mark3a“”I’ll do what I can.  Why don’t you start at the very beginning.”

“Yes.  The beginning.  A good place to start.  We went into Naples for dinner last week.  And the oddest thing happened . . .”

“Odder than a dolphin assuming the role of beach chair?”

Flipper flicked its tail.

Whether in delight or agitation, I couldn’t say.

Not being fluent in Dolphin.

To be continued . . .

If you missed any installments, the entire story can be found at the Short Stories tab . . . or just click HERE!


1. SidevieW - March 23, 2013


nrhatch - March 23, 2013

I am having such FUN writing this. I woke and leapt for the keyboard! 😀

SidevieW - March 23, 2013

That is always a great feeling

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

It’s a good thing that BFF can entertain himself when the world falls away for me.

2. aawwa - March 23, 2013

You have me hooked 🙂

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

Cool! I’m hooked too. I’m writing this chapter by chapter to see where it leads without any advance plotting or story board. I hope I don’t “paint” myself into a corner. 😉

3. Don - March 23, 2013

You got me too.

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

Me three! I’ve never written anything like this before and certainly not in a fly-by-the-ink-of-your-pen serial style.

I am allowing the story to unfold before me, one chapter at a time. And I’m having a blast. No maps. No plot lines. Just following the breadcrumbs and enjoying the journey of writing.

Don - March 23, 2013

Well, I’m enjoying following the breadcrumbs.

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

Yay! I’m completely engrossed in unraveling the mystery.

4. William D'Andrea - March 23, 2013

This is very good. Are you planning to have this published?

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

Thanks, William. No plans . . . other than to allow the story to unfold one frame at a time to see where it all ends up. Hopefully not at a Dead End. 😉

5. Pix Under the Oaks - March 23, 2013

Acccckkkkkk! You are going to keep happy and smiling during the snow event.. 😀 I thought we had lost Teddy there for a moment!

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

Without revealing too much (which is easy, since I am still in the dark myself), I am inclined toward Happy Endings . . . or, as Teddy might say, Hoppy Endings.

I am hoping that Freddie, Betty, and Teddy will live Hoppily Ever After.

Pix Under the Oaks - March 23, 2013

Not surprised at all that you are inclined toward Happy Endings! We love your happy.. 😀 It’s contagious!

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

Thanks, Pix! Nothing like a heaping helping of happy.

6. johnell74 - March 23, 2013

I’m here from Kate’s site, Nancy. I love the story and am agog (or afrog?) to find where it is going to end up – looking forward to the hoppy ending!
Thank you

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

Thanks, John (a/k/a Kate’s dad). I love that I started this the same day that Kate shared her super-hero frog story.

7. Grannymar - March 23, 2013

I’m ready for the next instalment and hope it won’t be the last.

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

Thanks, Grannymar. I’m not sure how many installments there will be . . . but I know it’s more than three.

8. diannegray - March 23, 2013

“…he looked as if he was about to croak” – what a brilliant line :D.

Highly enjoyable, Nancy. Looking forward to the next 😉

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

Thanks, Dianne. I’m biased, but I think that the coming chapters are better than their predecessors. 😉

9. ericjbaker - March 23, 2013

I like the rhythm you have going with this story so far.

nrhatch - March 23, 2013

Thanks, Eric. From what I’ve glimpsed, thus far, the best is coming round the bend.

10. Perfecting Motherhood - March 24, 2013

Oh my gosh, forget about the frog, you rode a dolphin! I’m soooo jealous!

nrhatch - March 24, 2013

That dolphin is in a small beachfront park in Naples. As soon as I saw it, I had to hop aboard.

Perfecting Motherhood - March 25, 2013

My kids would be fighting over it but I’d be the first one on it!

nrhatch - March 25, 2013

It was surprisingly sturdy, you might have been able to ride all in a row . . . like 3 little indians. 😀

11. cecilia - March 24, 2013

cool. this piece of writing oozes FUN! c

nrhatch - March 24, 2013

Thanks, Celi. Writing this story has been tons of FUN.

12. Tammy - March 24, 2013

Your characters have taken off on their own Nancy!

nrhatch - March 24, 2013

Thanks, Tammy! This has been such a wonderful change of pace and place from my “normal” writing.

13. Three Well Beings - March 24, 2013

Well then! Where will you be going next? I like the dolphin beach chair very much. It fits your playfulness beautifully!

nrhatch - March 24, 2013

Flipper’s great, isn’t he? Does he smell “fishy”? 😉

14. sufilight - March 24, 2013

This is fun to read, and the photo of you sitting on a dolphin adds a fun touch … Off to reading part 3 —————> 😀

nrhatch - March 24, 2013

Thanks, Marie. The inspiration for this tale came from a recent trip to Naples for a cocktail party hosted by my Alma Mater.

One thing led to another and here we are. 😀

15. spilledinkguy - March 25, 2013

I feel like jumping in the nearest fountain I can find, now…
just to check…

nrhatch - March 25, 2013

It’s tempting, isn’t it? Alice fell down a Rabbit Hole . . . with a CRASH. Teddy flew into the fountain and made a SPLASH.

16. viviankirkfield - March 27, 2013

I’m glad Freddy had the sense to ask you to sort things out, Nancy! Now we are going to get somewhere…though where that will be I certainly don’t know.:)

nrhatch - March 27, 2013

Last night, we watched Lincoln (Daniel Day Lewis) and saw a preview for the 25th anniversary edition of Who Framed Roger Rabbit? ~ I remember being awed at the interplay between the human gumshoe and all the delightful cartoon creatures.

What really struck us -> 25 years! The sands of time be not stilled.

17. dearrosie - March 29, 2013

oh my gosh I’ve got a lot of reading to do…
I like the playful tone. Love the way you introduce the mystery … What happened at dinner in Naples last week ?

nrhatch - March 29, 2013

Thanks, Rosie. Playful is exactly how I felt while writing it . . . especially tomorrow’s episode. 😀

18. nrhatch - March 30, 2013

Several readers requested that I post A Peculiar Party Under The Palms as a single page.

Just click HERE and you’ll be whisked through cyber space to join the party. Wheeee . . .

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