Category Archives: Works and Ideas in Progress

Ayah, Amy, and Ms. Harquin

“Please don’t punish me!” Ayah whimpered.  “I’m the littlest orphan!  Ms. Harquin smiled wickedly.

“Are you saying an older orphan would be better suited to this punishment?” she asked with a simpery smile.  Ayah had learned not to disagree with her orphanage matron, but she nervously nodded her head yes.

“Oh?” Ms. Harquin replied, dangerously calm.  “But you’re the one who earned it, sweetheart!”

“I’m too little to do that kind of work!” protested Ayah.

“Not anymore!” said Ms. Harquin, cheerfully.  “Those candies you stole from me made you big and strong!” Ayah looked at Ms. Harquin blankly.

“I eat them all the time,” Ms. Harquin continued, chuckling.  “Why do you think I’m much bigger and stronger than all of you?”

“Because you’re older than us!” shouted Amy, coming in from doing her chores.

“Don’t listen to anything she says, Ayah!” Amy continued.   “Those candies didn’t make you big and strong!”  Ayah looked at her friend and pouted disappointedly.  “At least not big and strong enough to do this chore,” Amy quickly added.  Ayah’s pout did not go away.

“That’s the hardest, scariest chore in the orphanage, Ayah!” she protested.

“Alright, Amy, enough!” shouted Ms. Harquin.  “This is between me and Ayah!  It is none of your business!”

“Yes it is!” insisted Amy.  “Ayah’s too young for that kind of work, and I won’t let her do it!”

“Too young?!  Too young?!  Of course she’s too young!” stormed Ms. Harquin.  “There’s no way she’ll succeed!”

“I know!” cried Amy.  “But she might get hurt!”

“Trust me,” said Ms. Harquin.  “I’ll get her out of there before her life is in danger.  I’m not about to get in trouble for killing one of you orphans!”  Amy was about to cry.

“Don’t give me that!” sneered Ms. Harquin.  “I am teaching the child a lesson!  She’s going to try this task, and believe me, she’ll know not to steal candy from me when she’s failed enough times!”  Amy tried to run away, but Ms. Harquin called after her.

“Don’t even think of trying to help her!” she shouted.  “You’ll suffer a much worse punishment if you do!”  With that, she slammed the door as soon as Amy was out of the room.

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Good King Cookery-Installment 1

Chapter 1

Summary

The book starts with four-year-old Prince Jack being given a tour of the castle by his father.  He takes no notice to most areas, but once they reach the kitchens, he is mesmerized.  Young Prince Jack watches in awe as the cooks prepare the day’s luncheon; then he wanders right up to where the action is.  Seeing this, his father assumes he’s hungry, so he takes him back to his chamber to have lunch with his nurse.  When the king explains to the nurse what happened, she guesses right why Prince Jack wandered right up to the action in the kitchen.  She doesn’t tell the king, though, for she knows he doesn’t want his son interested in a lowly task like cooking, but the very next day, and for many days after that, she takes him back to the kitchens to watch the cooks.  Two years later, when Jack is too old for a nurse and gets a male servant, the nurse reveals their secret to him, who continues Jack’s kitchen escapades.  By now the prince is not only watching the cooks, but helping them, too.  This goes on for two more years, ending with Prince Jack starting his magical training.

Rough Draft

“Come, my boy,” King Harry said to Jack, his four-year-old son and heir.  “I am about to show you my castle!  Someday it will be your castle!   And your kingdom, yes-ir-ee!”  King Harry took Prince Jack by the hand and started the tour.  The small boy took no notice to most of the places they visited.  He didn’t seem that interested in anything, his father thought, until they reached the kitchen.  Little Jack was mesmerized the moment they entered that room.  For a few minutes, he simply watched in awe as the cooks prepared the day’s luncheon, then he walked right up to where the action was!  The little prince looked up and strained his eyes, wanting to catch a better work at the cooking, but at that very moment, his father picked him up.

“What are you lingering in the kitchen for, my boy?”  he asked.  “You couldn’t be interested in cooking!  That’s peasants’ work!  Nay, nay, you must be hungry!  I shall take you back to your chamber so you can have lunch with your nurse!”  With that, the king carried off his son, who was still gazing longingly at the cooks.

When they got to Prince Jack’s chamber, the nurse greeted them both with a curtsy, then gathered up her beloved young prince in her arms.

“Hey, there, Jack!” she cooed, kissing his cheek.  “How’s my favorite little boy?”

“Hungry,” answered King Harry, for Prince Jack was a very quiet boy and didn’t speak that much.  “You should ask the cooks deliver lunch to these chambers immediatly.”

“Isn’t it a little early for lunch?” the nurse asked, for it was only eleven o’clock.

“Not for this big boy!” the king chortled.  “He’s mighty hungry!”

“Begging your pardon, Your Majesty,” said the nurse.  “But he doesn’t seem to be hungry.”  The nurse had been taking care of Jack since the day he was born, and she knew that when he was hungry, he never looked this content.

The king faltered.  This nurse, a very clever woman, had rightly contradicted him twice in one discussion.  Yes, it was early for lunch, and Prince Jack no longer seemed hungry.  Why, even in the kitchen, he didn’t have the unhappy look on his face that usually meant he was hungry.

Since she was one of his smartest servants, King Harry often confided in this nurse his worries or confusion.  After several moments of confused silence, he finally decided to do so.

“Well, if you want to know the truth,” he began.  “This boy did not show any signs of hunger until we entered the kitchens on his castle tour.”

“Oh?” asked the nurse.  “Did he look unhappy then?”

“No,” said the king.  “On the contrary, he looked happier than he ever had before!  He gazed in awe at the cooks’ work, and then he walked right up to them.  I know he doesn’t usually look happy when he’s hungry, but hunger is the only reason I can think of for him acting this way.”  King Harry dared not mention his worry that his son was interested in cooking, for it was a very lowly chore that his wife had particularly unhappy memories of.

“Oh, he’s probably just learning to be more direct about what he wants,” said the nurse, secretly knowing the truth.  “Why don’t I send for lunch?”

“You’re absolutely right!” beamed the king.  “You’re getting to be a big boy, aren’t you, Jack?”  Still thinking about the cooking he saw, Prince Jack returned his dad’s grin.

“Goodbye, my boy!” his father said.  “Be good for your nurse!”  With that, he gave him a kiss and left.

As soon as the king was gone, the nurse wasted no time in nurturing her prince’s newly found interest.

“You’re not really hungry, are you, Your Highness?” she asked.  Prince Jack shook his head.

“I didn’t think so.  You just wanted to watch those people cooking!” Jack nodded.  He was too young too describe it in words, but all those chefs cooking in the kitchen was the most amazing thing he had ever seen.  The nurse smiled, but then, suddenly, her face turned sour and she sighed.

“Your daddy is not going to like us if he finds out,” she said.  “He wants you to be into princely things, not cooking.  But don’t you worry.  You’ll get to see those cooks again.  I’ll make sure of it!  We’ll just see to it that Daddy doesn’t find out!”  With that, she winked at him.  Jack winked back.

The next day, and for many days after that, Jack and his nurse visited the castle kitchen.  Jack’s fascination grew with every kitchen escapade, and the more the cooks saw him, the fonder they became of him.  Finally, a royal who actually respected them their work!  They had secretly hoped for many years that the royals would start appreciating them more than they did.

Jack loved his nurse, and they spent many happy days together.  But alas, when he was six years old the day came for her to leave him.

“You’re not my little one anymore, Jack,” his mother said.  “You are getting to be a man, and someday you will rule this kingdom.”

“Yes,” agreed his father.  “That means it is time for you to say goodbye to your nurse.  You are too old for a woman’s care.  It is high time you had yourself some servants!”

Jack said goodbye to his nurse, and soon he met his new servant, Will.  Before leaving, though, the nurse had a few words with Will.

“Before you start waiting on him, Will,” she said, “there is something about this boy you should know.”

“His father already told me all there is to know about him,” said Will, pompously.

“Aww, but there is one thing his father doesn’t know!” said a very sheepish nurse.

“What are you talking about?” asked Will.  He obviously didn’t want any servant besides him knowing what the king didn’t.

“I am talking about cooking,” said the nurse.  “Nothing fascinates this boy like cooking!  I take him to the kitchens every day to watch the cooks preparing meals.”

“How does his mother let you get away with that?” asked the servant.  “She hates cooking!  She’d have a heart attack if she knew her son was interested in cooking!  I’m not gonna be responsible for that!”

“His mother doesn’t know,” said the nurse, calmly.  “She never sets foot in the kitchen.”

“His father does, though,” pressed Will.  “If he finds out, he’ll tell the queen for sure!”

“His father doesn’t know either,” the nurse reassured him.  “I have learned to be very secretive about our kitchen escapades.”

“Are you saying,” asked Will “that you want me to take him to the kitchen, too?”

“Yes,” answered the nurse.  “Any care giver of his must.  He’d be heart broken if you didn’t!”

“I suppose this means I would have to be secretive?” asked Will.

“Of course!” laughed the nurse.  “Otherwise the king will catch you!”

“You mean, I get to keep secrets from the king?” asked Will.

“You bet!” said the nurse.

“Whoopee!” shouted Will, very uncharacteristically.  “This is the greatest news ever!  I’ve never kept secrets from a king before!  Whoopee!”

“Shh, not so loud,” whispered the nurse.

“Oh, right, right,” said Will.  But he took Prince Jack by the hand and said, “Come on, my boy!  Let’s be secretive!”

“Wait one minute!” said the nurse.  “I need to teach you what to do first, don’t I?”

“Well, I suppose so, Ma’am,” said Will, awkwardly.

“Come here,” she said.  “I will whisper the instructions to you.”  Will came forward, and the nurse whispered her secrets in his ear.  Once he had all the facts straight, Will took Prince Jack on their very first kitchen escapade together.  Soon Jack was not only watching the cooks, but helping them, too.

As Prince Jack approached his eight-year-old birthday, he tried hard to enjoy his kitchen escapades with the ever-looming reality of starting his magical training.  Jack had never cast a spell before, and most children his age had, so Jack didn’t think he’d be any good at learning magic.

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Something Else Child-Haters Do

  1. You can probably tell from my list of insulting names that in my opinion, child-haters have to think children stink, just like the title characters of Roald Dahl’s “The Witches.”
    1. Here are some examples from the movie version of this book:
      1. All the witches holding their noses and waving the smell away when Bruno Jenkins comes into the room.
      2. This quote by the Grand High Witch: “Before you go down to the dining room, don’t forget your nose plugs.  The dining room will be full of filthy little children, and without your nose plugs, the stink will be unbearable!”
      3. These quotes by the witches when they smell Luke: “Ugh!  The smell!”  “Oh, yuck!  I smell it as well!”
      4. The Grand High Witch sniffing the air and shouting, “She’s right!” when she smells Luke.
      5. The Grand High Witch holding her nose and pretending to play with a baby, then pushing his stroller down the hill.
      6. This quote by Luke’s grandmother: “To me, you smell of raspberries and cream!  But to a witch, you smell absolutely disgusting!”
      7. Then Luke smiles and eagerly says, “What kind of disgusting?”
    2. Here are some of my related thoughts on “The Witches” and other child-haters:
      1. I adored “The Witches” as a child, and I still do as an adult.  However, I’ve always had issue with the fact that in both the book and the movie, witches are said to hate all children, but they are only ever shown saying boys are smelly and disgusting.
      2. We all know boys are smelly and disgusting.  I think that’s part of what their mothers love about them.  That’s why it’s much funnier when someone thinks girls are smelly and disgusting!
      3. That’s why I like Miss Hannigan.  She’s possibly even more repulsed by girls than boys!
      4. I also like Miss Trunchbull, because in the book, she says bad girls are far more dangerous than bad boys!
      5. As a child, my wish to have these witches talk about how smelly and disgusting girls are led to me fantasizing about saving my best friend, a girl, from the witches, and hearing them say how smelly and disgusting she was.
      6. This was especially funny since my friend was and still is one of the fussiest people I know, who always smells like she just came out of the shower.
      7. This is one of the reasons why I want to create child-haters who make it clear that they hate little girls at least as much as little boys.

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New Category

Hi All!  I have just started a new category on this blog called “Works and Ideas in Progress.”  Anyway, this basically means that this blog will now feature not only my completed works, but also whichever ideas happen to be bouncing around my head when I post them!

As some of you may know from my interview on “Jo’s World,” a Blogspot blog (here is a link to it: http://jolinsdell.blogspot.com/2012/10/get-to-know-writer-lily-stejskal.html), I am a very spontaneous writer.  This means that I write whatever comes to mind and am never sure what I’ll write when.  As a result, the posts in this category will always be a surprise for everyone, including me!

Right now I am focusing on creating child-hating villains for future children’s stories.  Having always been a favorite of mine, child-haters are villains I simply have to create!  To get people talking about them, I have posted a list of what these characters, in my opinion, simply HAVE to do in any story!  As you will see, these actions range from dark and sadistic to gross and hilarious!  When commenting, please feel free to add anything you think should be on this list or one of its sub-lists.  I will continue adding to it  as new thoughts come to mind.

Note: If you are unfamiliar with any of the child-haters mentioned on this list, I would recommend watching “Annie,” “Matilda,” “The Witches,” and “The Search For Santa Paws.”  Also, please be sure to read the book versions of “Matilda” and “The Witches,” because, as we writers know, the book is always better!

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Things Child-Haters Do

  1. What do child-haters absolutely HAVE to do?
    1. Destroy toys
      1. How can they do this?
      2. By twisting a doll’s head off
      3. By putting them in an incinerator
    2. What can make this extra terrible?
      1. The toy being a child’s comfort item
      2. The toy being a child’s only memory of his/her parents
      3. The toy being capable of coming to life.
    3. Punish children harshly and take pleasure in it
    4. How can they do this?
      1. By making them sleep in the basement
      2. By locking them in closets
    5. Hate all things good and nice
    6. Like what?
      1. Christmas.  Like the orphanage matron in “A Search For Santa Paws,” they can forbid anything Christmas related around the holidays, then call anything that magic, a kind supporting hero, or a child’s wit sneaks into the place “ridiculous” and/or a “mess.”
      2. Everything that makes little girls cute, like freckles and curly hair.  A child hater can want to rob little girls of these things until they are no long cute, cheerful little beings.  Like Miss Hannigan, they can want to “step on their freckles” and “straighten their curls.”  Maybe “chop of their pigtails” too, like Miss Trunchbull.
      3. All fun, colorful methods of learning like Miss Trunchbull.  The children and their nice teacher, just like Matilda, her friends, and Miss Honey, can hide all of these whenever the child-hater comes in.
    7. Taunt children about not being loved by their parents
    8. What if their parents are dead?
      1. Then the child-hater can taunt the children about never getting adopted like Medusa and the orphanage matron in “The Search For Santa Paws.”
      2. Then the child-hater can taunt the child about the death (or abandonment) or their parents being their fault.
    9. What if their parents are alive?
      1. Then the child-hater can say the parents are stupid or wrong to love them like Miss Trunchbull.
      2. Then the child-hater can try to convince the child that his or her parents don’t really love him/her, like the title character in “Hook.”
      3. Then the child-hater could tell the child how hard it is to believe that their parents would miss them if they were killed or taken away.
    10. Call children names
    11. Like what?
      1. All child-haters call kids “brats.”  Let’s think of something more creative!
      2. Foul, filthy, flatulent freak
      3. Tooth-picking toad-face
      4. Rat-kissing reek face
      5. Despicable, snickable stinkpot
      6. Worm-licking weasel beast
      7. Doo-doo eating dog breath
      8. Slug-slurping skunk bug
      9. Yucky, glucky oo-luh-rucky
      10. Fetid, flatulent piglet
      11. Putrid pig-slop pile
      12. Slime skinned stinker-bug

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