The Spirit Realm

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The Family Friend

A Child’s Familiar Fable of The Spirit Realm
By Shayne Workman
“The Family Friend: A Child’s Familiar Fable of The Spirit Realm” Copyright © 2016 All Right’s Reserved By Shayne Workman.
For Aleeah and Scrappy
The woods were quiet and the dim light of early evening shone through the trees. The silence was broken by the whining of a dog. Shags the pitbull limped, bleeding, through the trees in the forest, his injury, the result of a .38 caliber bullet hole that went clean through his shoulder. He had been shot in the process of trying to get away. His frantic look of desperation and confusion on where to go in the unfamiliar territory that he had been brought to after being taken from his family, mistaken for a ferocity that the dog had never showed in his four years of life.
Shags had slipped the collar and he saw an opening, knowing only that he had to get back to his family wherever they were now. He ran, the wind causing his lips to flap and the lids of his eyes to pull back in a slant. It was a look that had brought joy and laughter to River, the dogs owner, for many years when they would play in the yard. The officer had been to the left in front of him, but all Shags saw in his tunnel vision was the open path to freedom. The shot rang out as the bullet tore through the thick muscular shoulder of the dog. The impact of the shot knocked the big dog to the ground and he yelped, a horrid sound of pain and fear. The thought did not pass his dog mind in words but rather the increased urgency that he had to get home, had to get to River. Adrenaline pulsed through his large frame increasing the already formidable pain tolerance of his breed as Shags rose and again took to running. Two more shots rung out, both missed.
Shags collapsed on the wet fallen leaves, still on the ground from the previous Autumn. His breathing was shallow and he whimpered with each breath as the blood continued to flow from the gaping wound in his shoulder. He stared out ahead of him, the last of the days light intermingling with the multiple tiny lights floating in the forest, some from fireflies, some from the fairies that made the woods their home. Shags watched the lights of the little beings getting ever brighter as the light of the day itself slowly faded.
River sat in her room crying. It wasn’t fair that Shags was taken from her, he had done nothing wrong. Shags was given to her as a puppy that she could lift in one hand four years before. His name was Pup at the time. It was not for another five months when he became half of River’s size, a forty-five pound mass of muscle and puppy like goofiness that he was given the name Shags because of his habit of sliding down the carpet of the stairs face first on his side for fun. He would get to the bottom, sneeze and then dart up the stairs to do it again. He liked making River laugh, it filled his puppy heart with joy and the hugs he got afterwards didn’t hurt either. He was always there for her in the tough times like after she came home from her first day of school. She had been so nervous, and she had doubts about going back the next day, but when she got home Shags was there excited and wagging his tail. He was there on the day she found out that she was sick and would need treatments. She had cried then too and he had jumped up on the bed and lay next to her gently laying his big flat head in her lap. It was comforting, to know she had this friend that was always there for her when she needed it most.
Three days before there had been a report on the news about a dog fighting ring getting broken up when one of the dogs escaped and attacked a kid that was walking home from school. Among the penalties faced by those who ran the clandestine operation was a fine for an all but forgotten ban on the pitbull breed. For years River and her family had lived happily with Shags, but after this report came up, one of their neighbors saw the little girl playing in the yard with Shags and had called the authorities. Now Shags was gone. Five people had come to their door, dog catchers and officers both, to take Shags. River begged them not to take him and her parents did everything they could to try and reason with them. They would have none of it. One of the officers saw fit, in front of the family to keep his hand on his gun and remind them that if the dog made any sudden movements in the process of being removed that he was full within his rights to put the dog down on the spot.
“Please, let Shags come home.” She said through her tears. Unknown to River, she had another companion. One she had never met, but one who had been with her far longer than Shags, lifetimes in point of fact. He did not yet have a name, for only the incarnation destined to make the connection with him would name him. He was River’s spirit guide and guardian. One day he would be called Howlett, but for now he was just a barn owl with strange yellow green eyes that had pinprick pupils. He watched as the girl cried, but when she had asked for Shags to be returned, Her choice set into motion his ability to give aid to the familiar that had made a connection to his charge.
Into the night sky the barn owl flew. The energy of the connection the familiar shared with River, his guide to finding the location where Shags lay bleeding and tending to his wound. The live animals of the waking world were familiars, all of them, their own breed of nature spirit. The wild ones were often used as emissaries for the spirit guides, but those that were domesticated made deeper connections with people that allowed for them to share in the protection and guidance of their people’s twin flame.
Shags lay licking his wound to keep it clean, he was lightheaded from the blood loss and weak, but there was nothing for him to do but what his instinct told him to do. If he could think in the same fashion that people do, he would have wished that in that moment River could be there with him as he had been for her many times. Instead he remembered and he felt, both the love in the memory and the pain that it was now lost to him. “Shags.” The voice entered his mind. He stopped licking his wound and looked up, his ears perked, his eyes confused yet happy to hear his name, though unsure of how. The owl landed in front of him. “Shags, come on boy, we’re going to get you back where you belong.” Shags immediately recognized the owl, he had been aware of his presence and his connection to River from the very start and most importantly, he was happy to see a friendly face he knew. The big dog started wagging his tail.
The owl saw the wound and coming closer began flapping his wings, within moments the movement began to generate a soft glowing white light and Shags felt a strange humming vibration enter him through the wound in his shoulder. The bleeding had stopped, though the damage was still present, but Shags felt a renewed strength enter his body and with steely, bull headed resolve, the dog got up to all fours and watched as the owl took flight. “Alright boy, lets play.” The voice in his head told him as the owl brushed his cold wet nose make him sneeze and go into the chase down, which was always Shag’s favorite game. As the owl took flight Shags went into pursuit, ignoring the pain in his body as he did.
In just under an hour Shags had followed the owl to a very familiar location, the place he had seen everyday for four years, his home. Time for a little help. The owl thought and sent out the call in the speech of the owls and found one nearby. The owl had received the call from the spirit guide and took flight lighting heavily on the car that belonged to River’s parents and setting off the alarm in the process. Not a full minute had passed before River’s father came out of the house to deal with the alarm. Shags wagged his tail as he watched the man look around confused as to how the alarm was set off in the first place. As Rivers dad turned to go back into the gate of the yard he heard a whining dog and upon looking found Shags limping happily towards him wagging his tail. “Shags?” He said. “Is that you boy?” The dog now moved faster at a labored trot. “Oh God. What happened to you boy?” He said as he noticed the gunshot wound in the dogs shoulder. Looking around to make sure there were no prying eyes, the man led Shags into the house.
River was still sitting on her bed crying when father came to her door. “River honey, come on out. there is someone here to see you.” He said. After a moment River had dried her tears and came to the door. “He’s in the living room, come on down.” Without a word the little girl followed her father down the stairs and her face suddenly lit up when she saw her buddy laying on the floor. “SHAGS!!!” She cried running to the dogs side. Shags managed a lazy but steady thumping of a wagging tail as his person rushed to his side, just like he knew she would.
River got upset when she saw that Shags had been hurt. “He’s been hurt!” She said. New tears spilling down her cheeks. “He has, and we need to get him to the all night vet as soon as we can.” Her father said. “So why don’t you go upstairs get dressed and we’ll take him to get that fixed up, what do you say?” Her dad barely had time to ask before River hugged him tight and darted back upstairs to get ready without even another word.
If owls had the type of mouths that could register a smile, River’s unknown spirit partner would have been seen as happy, but he roosted instead with a clear look of peaceful contentment for a job well done. Shags did heal from his injury, and he was sent to a family member who lived in a more tolerant environment,and River came to visit once a week during her treatments. She along with her family launched a fight to get the breed ban lifted in order to allow Shags to come home to stay.

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This story was one that I had not anticipated on writing. I had hoped to take a little break from The Spirit Realm, but it seems every time I try my Middle Earth just keeps calling to me. This time however, there was a purpose to it. A few days back I received a link to a petition for helping the family of a young four year old girl with cystic fibrosis, keep their dog that has been a huge source of comfort and security for the girl as she goes through her treatments. Their dog Scrappy, is a Pit bull and the petition is to help lift the breed specific ban and allow the two to stay together. I have been pushing this every chance I get ever since. I am a supporter of the breed. I have had two myself and in all honesty, you really can not find a more loyal companion than a pit bull, also as a misunderstood misfit myself I know what this breed faces. I was inspired by the story of this girl and her dog to tell one of my own that might give people an idea of how laws like this created and fueled by the paranoia caused by mass media coverage can put a family like this through Hell. I mean those with pets know, that they are family and laws like this really are the equivalent of having CPS come and take your kid away for no damn reason. The petition is still up, they are still in need of signatures 12,046 to be exact to reach a 150,000 milestone. I am leaving the link here. Please do look into it, sign it and pass it along. Thank you, – Love BIG CAT

https://www.change.org/p/city-of-lakewood-oh-allow-child-with-cystic-fibrosis-to-keep-her-dog-a-pit-bull?recruiter=74975134&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink

This is pulled directly from posts on my Writers page on Face Book. I figured that I have promoted all these stories that I have written in the same series with different genres yet I have not really explained the purpose behind this or how they fit together, until now. Oh and if you like what read on this and want to get updates that I don’t post here, swing by and give the page a like at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Shayne-Workman-Big-Cat/715170738549742?ref=hl   Now on with the entry. 😀

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Jordan Davis was a skeptic who thought he knew it all, but he is about to discover that something evil lurks in the dark corners of a realm he never believed in. Trapped in a place where nightmares and reality intertwine, Jordan must find his way back to the waking world before his family falls prey to a malevolent Trickster. This modern day horror fable full of twisted irony is sure to leave you wondering just what is hiding in that place beyond all dreams? Just as Jordan Davis finds that it isn’t what can’t be proven, but rather what can’t be dis-proven that can get you when you let your guard down.

The first published story in the Spirit Realm series was written with a few things in mind. First I wanted to introduce what would be a recurring creature in the series with style, by showing you just how much of a threat it could really be. The reason I chose self publication was because a publishing company would not generally put out something that is just too hard to promote because it has no genre that really defines it. I know that while this story was a horror story that some of the other stories that the trickster appears in would not be. I had no wish to get pigeon holed into the horror genre because of this one story. Take a classic like “The Lord of The Rings novels, because it was an epic adventure tale it could only hint and suggest just how terrifying the Nazgul was. Choosing this path allowed me to show a gruesome demonic presence in it’s prime element so that in the next story when you see a pack of them chasing a twelve year old boy even though that story does not go into the same graphic detail, readers familiar with this creature can still have an Oh Shit! moment and it allows me to add that horror element without having to go into the same graphic territory. Also nothing scares the Hell out of people like the unknown, But how can it be unknown when it is as in your face as it is written in this story? The answer to that is in the concept itself, skeptics can look at this story and say yeah that’s ridiculous, but can you really say that? When you think of all the surprise suicides and murders, and when you think about the fact that it is a concept that can not really be proven false, because if a person faces a situation like the one in the story and they snap out of it, well that was just the most realistic and frightening nightmare they ever had, but if they don’t………. Well take that in consideration the next time you hear of someone dying “peacefully” in their sleep. That is the real power of the horror element in this tale, it’s the What if factor.

It is available now on Amazon.com however when the next story is released, the novella “The Druids Son: A Historical Fable Of The Spirit Realm” on 5/5/15 I am hoping that I can get it formatted to fit the requirements for availability on Barnes and Noble, as well as Apples IStore for Ipads and such and when the day comes that I get my actual website up it will become available there as well.

 

The Journey To The River

 

When twelve year old Todd Grayson is left in grave condition after an accident, he finds himself trapped in a strange and dangerous world. Now Casey his Spirit Guide/Guardian must help him find a way to The Great River to continue the life cycle or lose him to the evil forces that lurk below the surface of the waking world.

Bonus story: Last Night On Earth – A young man acts on a plan to commit suicide in the middle of a secluded forest, only to find there is more to this world than he realized.

Some of you may remember “Last Night On Earth” as the one post story that I put on this page, way back in October of last year. I wrote that while I was laying out “The Journey to The River: An Adventure Fable Of The Spirit Realm” and so I was already laying the groundwork for some of the concepts that were introduced with “Journey” The Great River and it’s function is mentioned to the protagonist Kevin by the Elves who we later are recognized as Nature Spirits or Spirits that have a direct link with the Spirit Realm, but were in fact created by the life energy of the Earth itself. Again huge LOTR fan, I love Elves and I really wanted them for the Spirit Realm series. My Elves are very similar to Tolkiens Elves in a lot of ways. They too, left the world of man when humans in their fear and ignorance began viewing them as oppressive overlords when they in fact were only trying to help us develop, and so they, like Tolkiens Elves harbor a sadness for the break in that connection. In the modern world they get very few human visitors and so they cherish every connection they acquire. We find they even planted the seeds of belief in them through the fictional tales we read and hear in hopes that one day people would come to believe in them again and accept them back. They are real good at planting seeds in peoples minds and in both “Last Night” and “Journey” we see how they use this to aid people, they are themselves lost in a way and so they view themselves as keepers of that which is lost.

“The Journey To The River:An Adventure Fable Of The Spirit Realm” was written with a question many of us have asked in mind. What about people whose bodies are being kept alive through machines in hospitals, I can think of few things that really make people wonder about the existence of the soul more so than this concept. Are they just meat? Is anything left of who they were? And if there is anything is it trapped or has it already moved on? The fact that the Protagonist is a child was not only meant to make exploring this concept a little more poignant, it also played better with how the relationship between Todd and his spirit guide Casey develops. It really is sort of a buddy adventure tale set against the back drop of a tragic situation. The Tricksters return to the series again as the main threat, but like I said before if you read the HORROR story that featured the being, then it added to the fright factor they represented without me having to go into the same graphic detail in a story that it really would not have fit that well. I have said that Stephen Kings Dark Tower series has been a huge inspiration to the Spirit Realm stories and it’s influence really is shown more in how I am tying all of these stories together in one world, I can have the “Adventure” story that happens to have creatures from my “Horror” stories and to me that builds a depth to this world I am writing and makes it more tangible, more real. It’s a world where Horrifying shit wanders about, but so does good things, things that care and are helpful, Bad shit happens to good people, but even though it does, there is a sense of a grand scheme to things and even the worst situation can open a persons eyes to understanding and hope. Some people are lucky, some people shit out of luck and often times whether any of us realize it or not our own choices do tend to play a factor maybe even more so than spiritual influence most of the time. We have free will for a reason.

“The Journey To The River: An Adventure Fable Of The Spirit Realm” is available now on Amazon.com. Like “The Trickster: A Horror Fable Of The Spirit Realm” it too is currently in the process of making sure the formatting is suitable to be able to have it offered on other sites as well.

 

 

 

 

 

THEDRUIDSSON

 

When the Druid Cathasach and Lady Adaryn are summoned to aid a small village, they fall prey to the fear and ambition of a local councilman. Wrongfully accused of murder, Lady Adaryn must flee from the villagers with Cathasachs help. Now the Orders to which they belong, having to choose between exciting the growing misgivings the common folk have towards their kind or hunt their own, have sent agents to help find them. The two find comfort in a forbidden union to one another as they stand against the hatred of the people and the wrath of their own, but they are not alone, for the goddess Nantosuelta and her mate Sucellus have set the stage to ensure the continued existence of the magic users in a world that would seek to wipe them out and humanities connection to the Spirit Realm with them.

“The Druids Son: A Historical Fable Of The Spirit Realm” marks the arrival of many firsts in the series. It is the longest of all the stories to date breaching short story length into novella territory. It also introduces, for the first time ever, the human magic users of old and many new types of Nature Spirits to join the Elves. The first time that the primary threat to the main characters are not spirits or demons at all but rather humans. The first time we meet one of the old gods and the birth of the Twin Flames. The Twin Flame in the Spirit Realm series is the combination of Spirit Guide and Soul that are born at the same time, The Spirit Guide keeps watch over the soul throughout however many lifetimes until the incarnation of that soul is born that makes contact with the spirit guide and from there the connection between the two sparks the flame within both and together they start unlocking their full potential. This is what you know, now for the behind the scenes stuff that most of you are not aware of. In August of last year I was facing a trial for a bulllshit felony charge, having already dealt with divorce and homelessness while in the process of most of the legal proceedings I was on the verge of folding. It was during this time that I started reflecting more and more on my life up to that point and as a way of dealing with it I started writing a story in chapters. It was a story that incorporated many actual events from my life, about me and my spirit guide the Raven Natasha. This story was like self help to put things from my life into perspective, but this story became the basis for the entire Spirit Realm series and the base line for the full length novel to be released on 11/30/15 now titled “The Tale Of The Twin Flames: My Experiences In The Spirit Realm” I went from being someone who squandered most of their time to someone who actually finishes what they start. In truth the closer I get to putting all of it behind me I started feeling compelled to go back to the story, but I did not want to just do a short story that would come after or have to be thrown in the middle of the novel so using another source of inspiration Yu-Gi-Oh! Yeah I’m a geek through and through, I’m also an asshole and as such I am a huge Seto Kaiba fan. The story line from the shows final season Dawn Of The Duel where Kaiba learns about his former life as an Egyptian Priest and how his connection to his trademark Blue Eyes White Dragon began, spawned the idea of giving “The Tale Of The Twin Flames” a historical beginning. No I am not saying I was a Druid in my first life, I do have a lot of Celtic heritage in my family , particularly on my mothers side and I got the idea to set the story around 500 B.C. in the British Isles. and like I said it covers the BIRTH of the twin flames. I will say no more than that so as not to spoil the whole damn story, just give you an idea that it really is more of a love story than anything and if you read the opening that I put up on my blog as a preview and wondered if it was a coincidence that the Druid Cathasachs Spirit Guide, Nuallan is a blue eyed dragon, it isn’t. I like to pay my respects and give little nods of gratitude to the things that keep the gears in my own head turning to keep coming up with these stories. If this tale has a moral it is simply what love must endure for the sake of keeping those connections we cherish from slipping from us, set in the back drop of the question, is it more important to be Religious and rigidly set in your ways or Spiritual and more open to changes for the sake of adapting as the world around you becomes something you no longer recognize.

“The Druids Son: A Historical Fable Of The Spirit Realm” Will be Available on multiple sites for multiple devices on May Day 5/5/15