Murder, alien encounters, monsters and magic

Seanchai Library

It’s time to kick-off another week of storytelling in Voice by the staff and volunteers at the Seanchai Library. As always, all times SLT, and events are held at the Library’s home at Holly Kai Park, unless otherwise indicated.

Sunday, October 1st

13:30: Tea Time at Baker Street

The pages of The Casebook of Sherlock Holmes, the final set of twelve Sherlock Holmes short stories first published in the Strand Magazine between October 1921 and April 1927, are once again opened for another tale from the diaries of Dr. John Watson…

This week: The Adventure of the Lions’s Mane

“It is a most singular thing that a problem which was certainly as abstruse and unusual as any which I have faced in my long professional career should have come to me after my retirement, and be brought, as it were, to my very door. It occurred after my withdrawal to my little Sussex home, when I had given myself up entirely to that soothing life of Nature for which I had so often yearned during the long years spent amid the gloom of London. At this period of my life the good Watson had passed almost beyond my ken. An occasional week-end visit was the most that I ever saw of him. Thus I must act as my own chronicler.”

Thus begins the second of only two stories of Sherlock Holmes’ adventures to be narrated by the great man himself. As the opening suggests, Holmes is now in retirement in Sussex, where he meets an old friend whilst on the beach. Harold Stackhurst is the headmaster of a local preparatory school, and as the two men chat, one of the masters from the school, Fitzroy McPherson, staggers up to them, his torso covered in livid welts as if he had been whipped with a hot wire. McPherson manages to utter the words, “Lion’s mane,” before dying.

More mystery ensues when it emerges that McPherson was involved with one Maud Bellamy – much to the chagrin of her father and brother -, and he had a sometimes strained friendship with another of the school’s masters, Ian Murdoch. What’s more, Murdoch may have also once been a suitor for Maud Bellamy.

Is murder most foul in the air? Could hatred or jealousy be the reason? Is McPherson’s death the result of his involvement with Maud Bellamy? The mystery seems to become more perplexing when McPherson’s dog is found dead, apparently having suffered as agonizingly as its master. But is its discovery the clue Holmes has been seeking?

To find out more, be sure to turn up on time for a spot of afternoon tea at Baker Street!

18:00 Magicland Storytime: The Black Cauldron

Join Caledonia Skytower at Magicland Park.

Monday, October 2nd 19:00: Reckoning Infinity

Gyro Muggins reads John E. Stith’s alien first contact story, once described as “Rendezvous with Rama meets James and the Giant Peach“!

Lieutenant Commander Alis Mary Nussem, her body partially bionic, isn’t to happy about finding herself aboard the same space vessel as the man she deems responsible for the accident which robbed her of a part of her natural body. However, she must put aside her differences with scientist Karl Stanton when a massive object enters the solar system, apparently on course to be swallowed by the Sun – but not before it will collide with a space station in Earth orbit.

Ordered to investigate the object, which is as large as a moon and quickly given the name “Cantaloupe,” Nussem, Stanton and the crew of their ship rendezvous with it, only to find they are not the first: the wreck of another vessel lies on the surface, a hole drilled into the object close by. The only means of entry to the Cantaloupe, Nussem and Stanton lead a team down through it – to make a stunning discovery.

Like Nussem, Cantaloupe is an bio-mechanical entity. It is alive, but it’s interior also have pipes, elevators chambers and more within. But it is also a place of danger – as Nussem and her also companions quickly discover – some to their cost. It’s also a place of unexpected surprises, as the crew’s biggest discovery proves…

Tuesday, October 3rd 19:00: Monsters of the Midwest

Join Kayden Oconnell for tales of bigfoot, werewolves and other legendary creatures! They are all absolutely true … except the ones that aren’t …

Wednesday, October 4th, 19:00 The Water Mirror

Faerie Maven-Pralou reads Kei Meyer’s tale of magic.

Merle is apprenticed to a maker of magic mirrors. She even has one of her own, with a surface of water into which she can reach without ever getting wet – magic being a relatively common thing in Venice. Meanwhile, her friend Serafin, once a master thief, now works for a weaver of magic cloth.

Both Merle and Serafin accept the wonders of the city, from the mermaids in the canal to the stone lions on which the city guards ride on their patrols. But all is not well; beyond the walls of the city, the Egyptian Empire is laying siege, an army of mummy warriors and flying sunbarks held at bay by the power of the Flowing Queen, which runs through the city’s canals and hold the enemy forces at bay.

Then Merle and Serafin overhear a plot to capture the Flowing Queen and render the city defenceless. And while no-one actually knows what the Queen looks like, they set out to protect and / or rescue her. In doing so, they must ally themselves with the Ancient Traitor and journey into the realm of Dark Reflections…

Thursday, October 5th

19:00 From the Shadows

Shadows is a series of eleven horror anthologies edited by Charles L. Grant and published by Doubleday between 1978 and 1991. Grant, a proponent of “quiet horror”, initiated the series in order to showcase this kind of fiction. It dispenses with the traditional trappings of horror and avoids most physical violence. Instead, the stories take place in every day settings, and feature a slow accumulations of dread through subtle omens. While Grant himself was very adept at this kind of fiction, he contributed no stories to the anthologies, writing only the introductions and author profiles.

For this reading, Shandon Loring has selected Mrs Clendon’s Place by  Joseph Payne Brennan, and The Haunting by Susan Casper, both of which appeared in Shadows 7 in 1984 (also presented in Kitely hop://grid.kitely.com:8002/Seanchai/108/609/1528).

21:00: Seanchai Late Night

Contemporary science fiction with Finn Zeddmore.

 


Please check with the Seanchai Library’s blog for updates and for additions or changes to the week’s schedule.

The featured charity for August and September is Little Kids Rock, transforming lives by restoring, expanding, and innovating music education in schools.

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