Lucy’s Admiral

To coincide with the publication of the 1949 Affair, The History they Tried To Suppress has asked me to reblog an entry from Mark Birch’s blog – Modern Day Pepys – in the hopes that if it’s here, it will be visible to all. (It doesn’t show up on his blog – unless you access it from their offices apparently). So here goes…

From Mark Birch: Modern Day Pepys

Thoughts on Lucy’s Admiral…

Don’t get me wrong, Lucy’s my mate. We’ve known each other since the first day of primary school and I’ve really despaired at the way all the so called popular kids have picked on her over the years. They call her geeky. In my book that’s jealous for clever so and so who gets good marks and does her homework. Well what’s wrong with that? Luce was always confident that the only way you got off Canvey and stayed off was by getting good grades, going to college and all that stuff. That of course was before that day trip to Southend Pier!

Now we’re off Canvey for good! And although I ain’t said nuffin’ to Luce, I’m pretty sure we aren’t ever going to get back to our world. Well in our reality: Lloyd George died in a carriage accident in 1909. In the world we’ve ended up in, he became the Great War Prime  Minister and key force at Versailles in 1919. So I’m pretty much guessing that even if we could get back to Southend and 2013 – it sure ain’t going to be the one we left. No surree bob as my grannie used to say! Still I’m not sure that’s a bad thing!

This time travel lark’s altered us too. There’s me – hob nobbing with politicians, and spies and the likes – getting beaten up like I’m some kind of young James Bond or that Biggles bloke and you’ve got to admit, even with the black eyes – being a real life adventurer’s got to beat being 18 and doing a college course. And then  there’s her – gone from geeky to gorgeous faster than you can say – Aldwych Strand.

I know what you’re going to say: I’m jealous. No I’m not. Nor do I fancy her. Luce is my mate.

But I’d be lying if I said I liked  all this attention she’s getting: and from all these “players”.  Lloyd George, Marconi, Walter Nicolai. Least they was respecting her. This admiral? This Valentin bloke? He’s like an octopus. Or at least he would be if he touched her. And he don’t; which if you asks me is weird. Oh it’s not he don’t touch her: he don’t touch anyone! Not without his gloves on.  But  what I don’t like is the way his eyes follow her around a room. And he stands just close enough to let the whole world know she’s his. Of course she’s too naive to see what he’s up to. She’s says he’s just being kind and an … avuncular.

Oh Luce get a grip!

This bloke sure ain’t no Hercule Poirot.

He’s hiding something and it’s going to all end in tears one of these days – you mark my words.

Why do I say that? Simple.  There’s more to this admiral of hers than meets the eye. Apart from being a murdering, lying scumbag nazi? O heck yes. She can’t see it though. I can. I’ve seen his handy work at first hand. I’ve seen him kill.

But what I really don’t like it the way this guy  knows too much – about her, me; our world (the one we’ve come from, I mean). He knows about things a bloke from the early twentieth century shouldn’t. And every time you asks him to do something – to help out; he says it’s more than his job’s worth. There’s also the way he commands a room. Now I’ve watched Hitler on those film clips, and I’ve seen how he can hold a crowd in the palm of his hand. But this Valentin bloke. He really knows what power is. Like he’s ruled the world or something.

Still no doubt it’ll all sort itself out. When we leave 1949 and head off for our next adventure. He’ll just be a memory, and time will have returned to normal. Because if it doesn’t…

 

 

The Lonliness Of The Long Distance Traveller

Lucy and Mark have been in the thick of it recently, and my attempts to make sense of their situation has kept me busy.

There have been writes and rewrites, as I have attempted to bring Lucy and Mark back together despite Hitler’s precise orders to the contrary. The pairs’ journey from Blenheim to London has changed repeatedly – helicopter, plane and car. With Mengele; without him.

I’ve had Valentin Von Schmidt go after them to be shot and killed by Mengele; to arrive just in time to see the two of them vanish into the distortion. To arrive in the nick of time and then be killed by Mengele

None of it was working.

Was this writer’s block?

Well you know me: I googled. Originally, writer’s block was defined as an inability to produce new work. Well that’s not the problem, excerpts of the third book are bouncing around in my head.

I googled Scott Fitzgerald – one of the world’s most famous sufferers from writers’ block. And that wasn’t it. You see I’m under no illusions. My tales of Lucy and Mark are no Great Gatsby. I’m not unable to write because I think this work is inferior to what has gone before. So why? Was I making it too complex? Or not simple enough?

In the course of my reading, I discovered stress and other work related worries can cause block. But these guys came out of my head in response to the stresses of the so called real world. Those stresses haven’t changed. Dead end.

Eventually I decided that maybe my block was the consequence of not listening to what my characters were telling me about one person in particular… Valentin Von Schmidt

You see, I’d got it in my head that Von Schmidt was fundamentally a good guy. That he would be redeemed by a gallant act of bravery. But he’s not a fundamentally good guy.

But Von Schmidt is different.  He’s a white blond, blue eyed Austrian in his  late 40’s.  His father was a diplomat at the court of Kaiser Wilhelm; his godfather was Bismarck.  Before the war he was a doctor, in the Austrian Navy and rose rapidly through the ranks. By 1949 he’s a vice admiral. Frances Stephenson tells Lucy that he was with them in Llandudno in 1914. And suddenly the historians’ amongst you will see my problem. Bismarck died in 1898.

Now all I have to do is work out what is he lying about

1. Llandudno

2. His age

3. His godfather

all of the above…

or something else entirely?

End of the Pier Affair – Latest Review…

5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant!, 10 Nov 2013
Amazon Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: The End of the Pier Affair (The Secret of Aldwych Strand) (Kindle Edition)

One of the best reads I’ve had in a while. The characters move back and forth in time uncovering surprising twists and turns in our history. The characters are interesting and lively, the story takes you on a journey and urges you to read on until the end. Overall, ‘The End of the Pier Affair’ is a must read for teenagers and adults alike.

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The 6 Rules of Time Travel

Google’s a wonderful thing. It is, honest.

Like last week, when my mind was full of Avunculars, this week it was really helpful  when I’m planning the conversation between Walter Nicolai, Valentin and Mengele ( eeuk). The focus of my study? Are any rules that people living in the 1940s would know from cinema and literature.

So to begin at the beginning.

The first time travel book was written in 1773 by Samuel Madden: Memoires of the 20th Century; then there’s a gap of about 100 years and (to coin a phrase) it all goes mental.  From  Dicken’s Christmas Carol 1843 there are the obvious candidates HG Wells: Chronic Argonauts (1888) and Time Machine (1895),  Mark Twain: Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court (1889); TS Elliot: Burnt Norton (1936); Alison Uttley: A Traveller in Time (1939) and (stopping in 1946) Moore and Kuttner’s: Vintage Season. Intertwined with these are the  intriguing  Max Beerbhom’s “Enoch Soames” (1919), Edward Page Mitchell’s “The Clock That Went Backwards” (1881) and  the 1887 El Anacronopete by Enrique Gaspar y Rimbau – which was the first novel ever to use a Time Machine (yeah that surprised me too.)

Once the books had been established, I hunted down the rules…

1. There seems to be a ghost or Devil like involvement/or someone makes a pact with the Devil

2. There’s a device of some description – a clock, or a machine of some kind

3. you can travel backwards or forwards

4. History can be corrupted/altered and Paradoxes created.

5. Gender is not a barrier to Time Travel

6. Travellers in time are individuals

Strangely and bizarrely the first time travel film is: “Connecticut Yankee In King Arthur’s Court” starring Bing Crosby and that’s not made until 1949.

But what about A Matter of Life and Death? Yes, it’s earlier (1946) but it’s not Time Travel; it’s travel between realities. Sorry guys.

Now let’s come back to the last point… If you’ve been following things carefully, you will know that Lucy and Mark may (and do) get separated but they travel together -even when Mark’s in the ersatz 2013, he was with Lucy in the Underground when it happened.

Now this has given food for thought: Mengele for all his horrific-ness  was an educated man. His PHD was real; he was theatrical; so I’m going to take a leap of imagination. I’m going to assume that he has read some (if not all) of these books. I am going to assume that he will be fixated about point 6. In fiction Time travellers are alone. In his reality Lucy and Mark travel together. Therefore Lucy on her own cannot be a Traveller. He might be suspicious, but if the other two who are involved in that conversation consistently reiterate that Lucy and Mark have to be together, the evidence of his eyes has to be correct. Doesn’t it?

If you want to find out more about Lucy and Marks first story, follow the link. If you don’t?  No worries

Now in Paperback

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Mark Birch here,

the ‘ero of the piece. Putting my side of the events out here

It was like this, Luce wanted some pictures – right? But well, she’s the class geek and can’t be trusted out there on her own. So. me being the football captain – well it fell to me to keep an eye on her.

Well how was I to know that there’s a Time Distortion at the End of Southend Pier. Well it’s not the kind of thing they tell you in history is it? That would be too interesting.

Anyways – to cut a long story short; we aren’t in Southend anymore. We’re in London – 1909 to be precise, and some daft bugger’s trying to kill Lloyd George and his mate Churchill. And me and Luce are right in the thick of it.

Bouncing around Time we have to stop the world as we know it,  being completely destroyed!

But it’s not as easy as it sounds, because there’s this Italian inventor geezer – who’s not only in charge of the Secret Underground Facility under Aldwych Station on the Strand -but also has the hots for my best friend…

Now available to purchase on Kindle and in paperback from Amazon

 

I Went with THIS one:

Thanks to everyone who sent feedback. It was a tough choice, you liked all versions, but I eventually went with this one.

Let’s hope the world out there likes it….the first adventure is now on Kindle!!!

So, if you want to find out how it all started, this is your place to go 🙂

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The 1949 Affair Chapter 1a

When you see as Swastika in a history lesson – even if you’re doing the imagery/purpose type lesson – where you’re analysing Nazi thinking behind the colour scheme; it’s something you’re divorced from. When you’re facing one that’s 518 foot long – contrasted against a night sky? That’s another story. I mean let’s face it; In 2013 … 1… it’s something that happened 74 years ago – those Nazis goose stepping all over Europe: that’s when my Great Grandparents were young. I’m an Essex girl remember. And … 2…  the Nazis didn’t invade. Operation Sealion failed in 1940.

Something  has gone

very

very

wrong.

And it’s about to get worse.

There’s a noise – a low rumble – Distant. Persistent. Getting louder. Steadier. More… Menacing. Soldiers! Loads of them. I look at Mark. The horror I feel, realised in his face. It’s night. The Nazis are in control. And we don’t have papers. No blauschein. No ID.

We stand still: waiting. Well there’s no point running. We’re on Blackpool Sea Front. Where can we hide?

“You! Halt!” I pray for  Mark not to be sarcastic, but the logic of the statement’s so circular, especially as we aren’t moving. Rifles point directly at us.

I’ve never been so frightened. Even when I was kidnapped, bound, gagged, and held in Dover Castle. That paled into insignificance compared to this.

“Papers!” The movies’ were correct. These soldiers snapped orders. After Melville and Nicolai… this was the rude and crude reality of war.