creation offers the opportunity to take from the table all that we ever need so we can acheive the best we ever dreamed. Thanks for visiting here.

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Thursday, January 27, 2011

Spirit Child

Ife was an intelligent girl and did very well in school. Had learned to speak English at a very early age and so took pleasure in discussing issues with her father in English. He enjoyed these conversations and took pride in her education. He would come back from work and chat for long hours with her. It did not occur to him that she was still in primary school. His wives would stare at the pair in annoyance. They sat and planned which secondary school she would prefer to attend. She took forms for each secondary school and sat for the exams. Her father took her on his big motorbike to these schools.

She rarely spent time with her mother as they grew further and further apart. Her mother stayed imprisoned in her fear that Ife was still going to leave for her spiritual world even after she no longer carried the slur of being the mother of “Abiku”. The dreams she had experienced while expecting Ife seemed to have faded away, except the conviction that she had a strange first child.

Ife carried an uncanny ability to know what was going to happen and would innocently announce an impending event with a casualness that made people around her give her a second look. One day at lunch she suddenly stopped eating and stared at her father with an air of consternation. Her father had looked up and asked her what was the matter.
“That your friend Abdul is going to be caught soon. He has been stealing from the police stores and has been planning to let them think it is you but he will be caught a few nights from now by the inspector himself. Will you be on duty Papa? I have just been told.”
Her father stared and swallowed his food, washed his hands and walked to his room. Everybody stopped eating and stared at Ife. She stared back and washed her hands too going into her father’s room. She found him sitting quietly on the bed and sat next to him.
“I am sorry Papa ,I did not mean to offend you”

Her father turned and stared at her, for long seconds. Then he sighed, “I did not tell anyone but I am going to be placed on suspension and room orderly for those missing items Ife, so how did you know?”
Ife shrugged helpless, “I don’t know how I know, they just tell me, things or sometimes I just suddenly know”.
“Like you see visions”?
"No, papa I have no idea how it happens , I just know and sometimes I argue with them but they wouldn’t tell me if I press. I just know” Ife was now close to tears.
Her father looked at her and drew her close in an embrace comforting her.
“It is okay, might be nice if you know how to make thieves stop” and he laughed but Ife heard the catch in his voice and looked up at him. “Don’t worry, Papa, you will even get a nice letter from this”
He laughed now in genuine amusement. “That one was you right”? I can tell sometimes when it is you from when it is her.”
“Are there two of me Papa?”
“Definitely, I like both of you,” he added in soft voice, "Sometimes though I am scared of the other.”

When she finished her primary education there had been drama about the desirability of her going to secondary school. The women all protested against her, that she was just a girl and was going to be somebody’s wife someday so why bother sending her to school? She said nothing and stared at her father. He looked at the women, shrugged observing that he did not see any reason why she should not be allowed to go to secondary school. His mother came for another visit and supported the wives arguing that Ife was from one branch of the family and since her father had more than one wife, it was the turn of the second wife to have her son educated. Her father pointed out quietly that the said son, was not even ready for primary.

That did not wash with the wives and things went a bit ugly as they referred to her ‘strong head’. She asked what that meant, was told that her strangeness did not guarantee that she would finish school. Spirit children could decide to leave at the peak of their successes so that their departure could be painful. They asked why her father had never been able to extract from her the secret spiritual pact stone. A pact stone was a shiny pebble believed to be the secret symbol of her spirit world which all spirit children tend to hide somewhere.

Her father shook his head puzzled, and appealed to her mother who he assumed ought to know better,
“Why give her this unnecessary stress?, you know don’t you ?”
Her mother stared close to tears insisting she had tried to persuade Ife to give up her secret pact stone, but each time Ife had shrugged and said she did not understand what she was talking about.
“I thought since you are close, you could make her talk.” her mother concluded.

Her grandmother who was smoking her pipe, gave Ife a very close observation, declared that she was calling in the medicine man who would decide. She said with some relish in her voice that the medicine man was so powerfull that no spirit child or abiku could resist him.
Ife looked at her grandmother and smiled. She said nothing. She was curious, how can a man make what does not exist happen she wondered.
It was arranged that the man should come in on the next market day early in the morning. Ife shrugged and went to her room. Her mother hovered over her pleading and promising all types of things. Ife watched her mother and then smiled. She explained to her mother that she had no pact with anyone and was simply living as normal as she could. Her mother said she was going to vigil in the church and Ife shrugged and wished her well.

The next morning, the medicine man came and brought out his divining beads. She was asked to sit in front of him. She sat on the mat and stretched out her hand. The medicine man took one cursory look and then a shocked second look and fainted.

There was instant pandemonium. Everybody started shouting at once. Ife stared at the man irritated, why make a ceremony out of nothing. She stood up and walked away.
When the old medicine man was finally revived, he insisted on seeing Ife. Her father asked why and he said he was not talking until he had seen her. So she was sent for. Ife came back wondering what she was going to be accused of now. The old man saw her and bowed very low in greeting saying he would be of assistance if ever he was needed. She assumed he must have lost it as she just shrugged and said she didn’t know what the man was talking about then brightened and asked if the man could persuade her family that she should be left alone as she was not going anywhere and had made no pact with any living or celestial being. She finished speaking close to tears and really upset.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


The tendency is to assume that writing is a breeze. Ask anyone who has sat in front of a keyboard and stared blankly waiting for the words to come. Muse could be capricious. Thus the essence of this part of the blog is to give recognition to established writers as well as aspiring writers. I hold a conviction that every human being strives for an inner goal and it is the impetus that goads us on. My guest today, is wife, mother and an aspiring writer. I first knew Elizabeth through a writers’ forum and became impressed with the power of her stories and a very vivid imagination. She loves to write fantasy. It is thus a pleasure to chat with Elizabeth Arroyo. It is interesting. Oh before I forget, I will be inviting some poets, showcasing some of their poetry and of course you can read more poetry offerings on the poetry page. I promise from mow on to update as well. Welcome to our Center Stage personality. Her photograph she says is under construction.
First, I would like to thank you for having me here.

1. Please tell me a bit about you
I was born and raised in Chicago, the youngest of five. I have a Bachelor’s degree in Psychology and a minor in Criminal Justice. I wanted to change the world after college, or at least change the life of a child. I’ve worked in foster care, mental health, and now I work with an organization advocating for Latino families in Illinois. I strongly believe that our youth have great potential and education is key to moving forward. I am a proud mom of four, ages 18, 14, 8, and 2, the youngest being my girl.

I began writing when I was fourteen. I was always drawn to the world of magic and sorcerers mixed in with a little Stephen King. After my first rejection at sixteen was accompanied by a post-it stating that I needed work with dialogue, I stopped trying to get published with the erroneous belief that writing was something you were born with. Had I known that critique was a good sign, I would have continued. Mid-life crisis and a need to revert back to my purpose in life, brought me back to writing, and in 2009 I decided to give it a go again.

2. You write fantasy, could you explain what has been your experience so far?
Writing fantasy takes a lot of work. Readers want to be drawn into an experience and adventure that takes them out of the “normal”. Because fantasy is such a popular genre, the writer needs to be a lot more creative and think outside the box. There is no room for lazy writing or you risk your own creativity. I learned this the hard way when a fellow blogger asked what was different about my world than the others already written.

Writing fantasy incorporates worldbuilding, linguistics, and culture, and not to mention technology and nature. I love reading and writing it and have learned loads from this first manuscript.

3. What determines your characterizations?
My characters are drawn from real people, and characters in movies and books. This helps me make sure that my characters have a distinct voice and personality. I’m always thinking… what would this person do or say? I am drawn to strong female characters. I am also intrigued by the story of the bad boy. RA Salvatore wrote the Sellswords series that tells the story of Artemis Entreri, a bad guy who I found intriguing. I like digging deep, beyond the physical to look for my characters.

4. Women in the old days were always seen as romance writers but more women are beginning to write fantasy and there is the lady J K ROWLING? Are we likely to have another lady upstage her successes soon?
I think successes such as JK Rowling are scary business and not the norm for authors. She has been blessed with the legacy that is Harry Potter, but on the tail end, her future work may be shadowed by it as well. Will we see other success stories? Sure. We had another fad with Stephanie Meyers and the Twilight series. People are always looking for the next new thing.

5. Do you have any book in the offing right now?
I’ve actually written a young adult contemporary manuscript that is out with a few agents right now. I don’t want to say I’ve totally given up on fantasy, but I tend to write stories I feel need to be told. I’ve written a paranormal romance, a dystopian young adult, and am working on another YA contemporary.

6. What other genre of creative writing interests you?
I read anything that moves me. If I’m not drawn to the character in the first chapter, I usually give up. I have very little time during the day, and have a short attention span, so the book has to offer something for me to keep reading. As for writing, I write what I love to read.

7. You are married, have young children, have a regular job, write and blog as well how do you juggle all these?
This is a tough one. I use every minute of every day. My day job requires me to be in the community more than half the time and I find that my car is a very good place to brainstorm projects, and to listen to audio books. I purchased a digital recorder to record plot points and character arcs as I drive. I carry a notebook everywhere I go to jot down any thoughts and scenes that pop up. At home, I write early in the morning and/or after the family has settled for the evening. My older kids help out as well. My current manuscript is actually about the relationship between me and my oldest son. It’s told from his point of view. I told him about this project and he was very excited to read it. So far, he loves the first couple of pages and has offered to provide some scenes for the story. I was worried that he wouldn’t be too keen on the idea. My 14 year old now wants me to write a story using him as a main character. Needless to say, it worked out great and brought us closer. It is a balancing act based on priority and I do what I can. It seems to be working so far.

8. How do you handle those little rejection slips?
Rejection? What rejection? **smiles**
I think of them as passed opportunities. I believe your mindset is very important and language tends to reflect that mindset and so I deleted “rejection” from my vocabulary. Surprisingly, I take it very well, so far. After Shadow, my fantasy MS, didn’t garner any requests, I started looking at it a bit more critically. I strongly believe that writing is something that can be taught. And publishing is a business and like all business, people need to make money. End of story. They don’t care that you poured your heart out and neglected house and family for two years to write it. They think about cost/benefit. Is it marketable, can they sell it? As a writer, I have to think the same way. I try not to think of writing as subjective. It is. I know. But that mindset will allow me to use it as an excuse and not to look at my manuscript a bit more critically. Overall, in the end of the day, I keep learning, writing, and moving forward. Nothing has changed by those passed opportunities. I am still here.

9. Who are your favorite authors/books
I like JK Rowling (I would totally read a prequel to Harry Potter), Stephen King, Dean Koontz, RA Salvatore, Sherillyn Kenyon and others. I add to the list every year as I read more and more.

10. Your greatest influence
My parents. I am because of them, strengths and weaknesses.

11. As a mother, have you ever wondered on some of the effects of books on children?
Yes. I monitor what my kids read, watch, and play. I have to. I don’t agree with banning books, but I need to know what they are reading in order to have a conversation about it afterwards. I do worry about how some YA books tend to romanticize certain themes: vampires, werewolves and the weakling in between. I will not say more.
If you’d like to find out more on what I’m up to, you can visit me at http://chandarawrites.blogspot.com

Thursday, January 13, 2011


We have the pleasure of another Center Stage personality. And please click on the poetry page for some bit of poetry so we can of put our hand in you know. Thanks to all for the response of last week and I think I will make this regular. So if you do have an interesting person do let me know.

This week I am talking to a lady. A lovely lady and an Author as well.

The Empire by Elizabeth Lang
I would like first of all to congratulate Elizabeth for a very brilliant piece. I would like to thank her for giving heart stopping moments. She wove a story of love, naked abuse of power, real evil and outright hypocrites. I would like to thank her for using the novel “The Empire to lay bare our pretensions to civilization and ‘empire building.’ I have never felt so involved in a supposed fantasy as Elizabeth made me feel with the brilliant characterization of Adrian Stannis, Kali MIrren and the very awful Sester. Humanity has great potential for infinite good and absolute evil and in the portrayal of Adrian, the scientist who learned through love to discover his own humanity and almost die in the process of saving humanity, I had an urgent prayer that copies of this book be made available to all those ‘intelligence’ men. The tragedy might be they may not find themselves in time as Sester did. I could not drop the book even as my eyes went heavy, every page held me and tortured me with the hunger to know more so I kept turning the pages and forgot all else. Thank you Ms Lang. Congratulations may your quill continually flow with creativity.

Please tell me a bit about yourself

I'm a Canadian, born in Hong Kong. I've been writing for about 3 years. The Empire is my first published novel, though it's not my first novel-length story. It is my first original one.

In my other life, I'm an IT professional, working mainly in a software development company specializing in insurance.

I've worked on various projects in many places and especially enjoy working overseas, most recently in Taiwan and India.

I find it fascinating learning about different cultures and perspectives in a work and social setting rather than just as a tourist. And, of course, I love sampling the foods of the various regions.
2. You write science fiction, and have now published a very brilliant piece: “The Empire” how do you feel?

Thanks, Biola. I can't lie...it feels great! I hadn't considered publishing The Empire but I had thought of being published eventually, so this was a great opportunity. I really must thank my publishers, IFWG Publishing for taking a chance on The Empire.

I've been enjoying taking care of my little nephew this past week and while a book isn't a baby, it is my creative 'baby,' and it was a wonderful feeling being able to hold it in my hands.
3. Your characters are taken from different species particularly Kali and Adrian. What were you trying to tell us there?

Kali is Tellaran and Adrian is an Earth human. I paired the two of them because Adrian feels very much like an alien among his own people. He isn'tl comfortable in social settings and is more at home with his computers and in the lab. To him, a lot of what goes on around him is 'alien' and he doesn't understand some of the silliness that goes on around him. In that way, he and Kali have something in common.
4. Your novel has handled Romance, War, and institutional murder in the name of the Empire with a very firm and brilliant hand, do you think scientists are also to share in the blame for the inherent diet of violence the world is fed?

In a way, I do think they are partially responsible, and also society as a whole. We pursue science and invention without thinking of the implications of what we are doing. Do we really need another 10 ways to blow each other to oblivion? A lot of our scientific and technological advances have their roots in military research, which, to me, is a sad testament.
5. Why do you use fantasy as your preferred mode of creativity, did you love science when you were young?

I've always loved science fiction and fantasy. My favourite authors were Isaac Asimov, Tolkien, Anne McCaffrey, Gordon R. Dickson, Piers Anthony and David Eddings. I also love mystery. I like the ability to explore different themes using alternate worlds that mirror aspects of our own.
6. What other genre of creative writing interests you?

I have done some short pieces of humour and a bit of poetry, mainly maudlin stuff. I love mystery but haven't made the foray into mystery writing yet. The closest is a crazy spoof combining film noir and science fiction, which I haven't finished yet.
7. Kali is from another planet and uses psi enabled abilities, can we look forward to a world where good intuition may be more relevant to a peaceful world.

In the book, Kali's world is a much more peaceful society than the ones around them, but they have 'compromised' and joined the fight against the Andromedans. I will be exploring a bit more on the conflict between her world-view, Adrian's, the Empire's and the Rebels in the sequel.
8. Some of these fantasy stories become film ventures, if you get such a proposal, is there something about the book you will write differently, and what kind of effect do you hope to see?

I would love to see The Empire on film, but that would be a fantasy :) In terms of changes...I might work in more visual details to flesh out some of the scenes.

9. Thank you so much for coming on Center Stage.

Thank you very much for having me.

Friday, January 7, 2011


Hello All,

This week I am starting something new. Apart from my regular writings, I wish that we get to know ourselves a bit more. I would like to introduce guests. Authors, poets whose work I have admired. They bring to the human table their own very talents and have been a great influence one way or the other. Actually writing is a great influence one way or the other. My first offering this week is someone who I hold in very high esteem and feel he is very special.
The truth of a human soul shines through from the windows of his spirit and that is in the eyes. My people will tell you, the conversation is in the eye. I have the distinct pleasure therefore to invite you to read about Gerry HUNTMAN

1. Please tell us a little about your self

I was born in Canberra, Australia from migrant parents - they came from The Netherlands. My father was not very well educated but he loved reading war and speculative fiction novels, and I picked up on that quickly. My mother strongly encouraged me to read early. I wanted to be a writer from the age of ten.

Unfortunately there was a lot of subliminal pressure for me to do very well in my education, and I ended up going from course to course, university to university, doing subjects as diverse as Law and Classical Studies. Stupidly I did not pursue creative writing, or capitalize on the considerable literary studies I had done.

Eventually I compromised (but did not include creative writing/literature), doing a science degree in Computer Science, an Arts degree in Biological Anthropology, and a Masters degree in Information Technology. This worked well from a career point of view, while my creative needs (throughout all this time, and much thereafter) were sated by way of participation in roleplaying groups, formal and informal. I can honestly say that many of my skills in writing today (plot design, world building and characterisation) originated in that very long apprenticeship.

I am currently living in Melbourne Australia, with a lovely wife and child. Melbourne is a good place to live for the arts, as well as my work - but the main reason why we live there is because there are truly world class facilities to help children with Asperger's Syndrome, which my daughter has.

About five years ago, when my one and only child was born, all my pent up energy and need to write finally came to the fore. Within a year, part time, I wrote my first novel (a high fantasy novel, 220k), and from that point in time I was totally hooked on writing. It was no longer a case of 'wanting' to do it, or it being 'nice'. I simply had to do it (and still do).

I learned many things about writing over those years, the hard way. Perhaps the most useful and rewarding was joining a small virtual group of speculative fiction writers, which eventually became the nucleus of the International Fantasy Writers Guild, and which culminated in us forming a publishing company. It was then that I discovered that I also had the right temperament and skills to be an editor - and which I have honed since then.

Over the last few years I have grown as a writer, culminating in 2010 where I had 10 short stories accepted for publication, as well as my first published novel, Guardian of the Sky Realms.

2. You say Guardians of the Sky Realms is mid age fantasy please explain

This is a fascinating area, Biola. In the general publishing domain there is a tendency at a high level to label, in terms of age, books into something like 4 categories - children's, young adult, adult, and restricted reading adult. The problem with this is that under such broad categories, children's stories (rarely novels) do not delineate the different needs of this age group - ie a toddler versus a pre-teen - but this is often taken care of by placing recommended ages on the covers, and some stories are simply self-evident for certain age groups. A similar sort of thing happens with the generic 'young adult' group - it really is made of several groups, all with different needs. True young adult titles really covers something like 16 years old to somewhere in the early twenties. By it's nature, it has tendrils into adult fiction, but it is more aligned with the culture and interests of the late teen age group.

Mid-grade, or more appropriately, 'middle grade' is a term invented quite recently to relate to the ages of children around the middle grades in high school - around 13 to 15, although, like young adult, has tendrils running into the young adult category. What this means is that my book is looking at this age group as the prime target (in fact, since the main character is a female, I could say that I am targeting female middle graders), but of course, some children mature earlier than others, and also, I wrote it with a lot of imaginative adventure that could be of interest to most age groups. What it doesn't contain, because it is middle grade, is any substantial content on matters concern young adults, such as emerging sexuality, strong emphasis on mating rituals, etc.

3. Do you believe in the supernatural?

I am a bit skeptical on this. Once I did believe in the supernatural, and perhaps my science studies purged me of it. And yet, I have a strong interest in the subject, and it is incredibly evident in almost all my writing - a necessary element. Perhaps I am agnostic on the subject.

4. How do young people relate to fantasy and today’s realities

Tough question. I think young people are smarter than adults think, but like all younger set, they also need time to learn life's many lessons, some of which cannot be substituted any other way. This tells me that they have a handle on today's realities, and of course with technology changing so quickly and permeating culture, they have advantages. With regard to fantasy, again the media, entertainment industry and literature (electronic and print) are saturated in fantasy. Again, they are well positioned. What is interesting is the way fantasy is changing , in terms of what is popular - urban fantasy, paranormal fantasy, and other blended forms, including romance, historical, and alternate history. This is, at a high level, goodness, but I do also note that the literary world seems to love to clone what is the flavour of the month. Look at the vampire and zombie novels out there, including at a Young Adult level.

5. You are from Australia, has the religion of the aborigines ever affected your writings.

Not really. It is a shame. The Aborigines are in fact made up of many different subgroups, most of whom have their own myths and creation stories. Many Aborigines have lost their own culture to one degree or another, mostly because of an extremely ugly period of white settlement history, where many Aborigines were displaced from their homelands and forced to live like white people. There were even periods where Aborigines were killed - but the greatest killer were diseases that the while people brought with them. The end result is that there isn't enough source material, or the will to promulgate it, to infuse into contemporary Australian society.

I am outlining a novel, by coincidence, where many scenes take place in Australia, where I will in fact infuse some Aboriginal culture and mythology.

6. How do you find contemporary literature in your country.

Literature is always healthy in Australia, but it is also heavily influenced by UK and US markets. There are a fair number of well known Australian writers with international fame, and more of course with success within Australia.

It is not easy to be a bookseller or writer in Australia at the moment, due to international competition, and having a relatively small market.

Personally, Australia has a lot to blame if there are issues. As Australians many of us want to retain our own culture and idiom in our literature, but ignore the internationalisation of literature. Some others have the opposite view, and undermine our identity. I don't believe it is a cut and dry situation, we can accommodate both.

I am glad to say that speculative fiction is alive and well over here.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

Spilnters of Pain

Splinters of Pain
Mum wanted me to be a nurse, she liked their white dresses, and pious kind looks. First I did not like nurses, second, that was not in my plans, third, I was just getting to know the lady they called my mum and I was not so sure I wanted to listen to her advice. Fact is we didn't know each other very well! Wasn't very sure of where I stood with her. I never really was sure until she died some twenty something years after that famous advice. I am only gradually beginning to miss her, which is a bit late if you ask me and yes.. you have not asked me! So where was I? Yes. How I got into writing. This could get very boring you know. Come to think of it that is how I got into writing! I was bored. I told my stories. I liked telling myself stories. I use stories to get out of pain. I use stories to make me happy. I use stories to tell myself not to be frightened when I watched for my first child alone in a big city with a man who did not know better than to make me pregnant. Come to think of it I was too plain dumb to know any better myself! I used stories to wipe out my pain and confusion when the very first fruit of my womb did not last for more than two days and I was perplexed and in pain. I did not even know whether I loved the baby. He ,I called him 'HE' each time because I could not call him by his first name and I had no idea what other name I should call him. At least he was male so 'he' would do! By our tradition I was not allowed to call him by his first name. Interesting bit there because he said he did not care for tradition but he would remind me of that particular aspect. He had promised to educate me in return for that promise I had agreed to marry him, I had allowed him to make love to me. Along the way I got pregnant and I told him. He stared at me for long moments then asked me what I wanted to do. I stared right back wondering where he was coming from. Finally, he asked that I should come to his room. I was still in school a boarding student and had no where I could go, definitely not my mum and Dad had died. The school gave him one room in the boys hostel. One night, dressed in boy's clothes, he sneaked me into his room. I lived in that room hidden from sight for nine months. He kept me in a room all day, hidden and brought me out only at night to get some fresh air. I was pregnant but a teenager, supposed to have just finished secondary school and go home. There was no home, I had no business having a baby. I could not go home. There was no future and this man had promised to continue my education. My mum had advised that I should just agree to marry him but be very sure not to get pregnant. Problem was, she did not know how to tell me what I should do not to get pregnant. Just said I should not get pregnant. What if he asked for sex? I had asked, nice girls are not supposed to know about that but then how do we ensure we do not get pregnant. My mum did not have an answer so she simply said tersely I should make sure I did not get pregnant. He was much older my teacher, so I simply told him what mum said , he smiled and lifted my skirts. He forgot to take me to ante-natal clinic in all the nine months the pregnancy lasted.He said he was too busy imparting knowledge into young brains and by the way have I ever seen a goat taken to ante-natal? No I replied in wonder and he said it was better I had my baby naturally without the benefit of ingesting chemicals. He kept me in a room with my piss and shit until I could clean them out at night. I held the prize for the most stupid babe in the universe! Then one night fortunately for both of us sharp pains came and he sneaked me out and took me to the hospital. The doctor was shocked at my pallor. I looked like a ghost! I had never seen daylight in nine months! I was a white- black! My own words really. I had no idea what was going to happen to me and this pain, just this pain. The man said as casually as he knows how, that I should not attract attention to myself. After all I was just going to do a normal thing. Have a baby. He said it was a biological function of the female species to have babies. Nothing strange in that you know. Goats, lions, pigs have babies my friend! No need to make waves about a normal thing. Whoever heard of a goat attending ante-natal? So I watched the nurses solemnly. Did all I was asked to do. I was too scared to ask what the nurse meant when she said I had a narrow pelvis! I tried to look like it was normal to have a baby when I still didn't understand much what the hell was going around me. When I missed my dad in the middle of the pain, I cried but hours later a beautifully pale child came forth. I called her Yvette because in all my favourite stories, that was a heroine. I mean we both made it out of that blur of pain and embarrassment. But the doctor had a big frown on his face when he saw both of us later and took us off to the teaching hospital. “HE”? Oh funny you should ask that.. he left. Didn't turn up until two days later. He had lectures he said. Couldn't spare time. Anyway I was only having a baby! She died from anemia hours later. I came back to the hospital bed, confused, upset and very much alone. When the man came in the evening of the second day, he listened quietly then simply went out again. I did not see him until the next evening when he took me back to that room. He never said a word. He never told me what had happened to her. I did not know where or if she was buried because I was taken away. Until today and even beyond today, I never knew what happened to her. It became a story for me. I needed to write the story to get out of the silent despair. I never told my mum about Yvette. She said I was not to get pregnant remember?