Keeper’s Festive Finders: Revised Edition


Suggested Audio Candy:

The Pogues & Kirsty McColl Fairytale of New York


Everybody loves a surprise right? It starts when we’re infants as we spend the last of our milk money on our Kinder eggs, unwrapping them fervently to discover which poorly manufactured slab of plastic lies in wait and perpetuates right through our lives. Whether opening a wage slip only to find there’s been a discrepancy with your payment, or arriving home still inebriated from a night of over-indulgence, to realize we have bagged ourselves a spangling fresh STD, we love nothing more than a few spins on life’s roulette wheel. For the record, Keeper always hedges his bets on red.


Here at Rivers of Grue we adore the smallest token gestures and share these freely with our loved ones. Indeed, I’m particularly enamored by the prospect of leaving little buried treasures throughout my prose. Dark uncut crimson rubies leave their habitual bloody footprints through my neon-lit handiwork. You cannot discern these with the naked eye, there are no beacons guiding you towards these tiny fragments of the fantastical. To spot them you will need to be committed and patient. Like Sam eventually discovered in Ghost it is fruitless to kick the can wildly, you need to get down on the ground, feel the can, breathe it and possibly even give it a vague lick before attempting to decipher its intricacies.


I always stated that I was an open book but how open depends on how much essence I draw from every one of you. Pleasing the Grueheads gives me a jolt of electricity straight to my mother board and powers up the monster. It is then that I scatter “rares”. Often known as breadcrumbs, rares are the most precious commodities to a reader, providing inspiration to all that stumble upon them. Should you not then fret not, there’s always another. But they are here.


I also call them finders and they can range from a gentle kiss meant for a solitary pair of lips or an embrace to each of you in turn. I may give a gentle nod to the tiniest shared memory or provide, in a jiffy, a calming back rub or an acknowledgement of shared appreciation after a day when nobody appeared to give even one hoot. I always give at least two and the way in which I practice this is through the meticulous placement of such finders. Time is against me consistently and it is hard acting as oracle to an entire nation so I do it in a way that makes it clear that I’m always present. You may not see me at all times, but you can hear me if you choose to, and smell me if you get too close. In many ways I resemble the can from Ghost and if that means taking slathering me with your tongue then please don’t let me hold you up.


Should you have a doubt or concern eating away at your core, dip into whatever relevant piece of my work and remember that Keeper never lies. Do I fail? Regularly, and for this I am thankful. I’d take desire over faculty any day of the week and every fall provides an exclusive opportunity to get back to your feet with a tad more resilience. If I’m really at a loss and feeling as though my world is starting to splinter, then it is channeled immediately to the Crimson Quill and it becomes bail-out time.


There have been a handful of ethereal instances where I believe that my open bleeding has saved me from the abyss and, more critically, I am informed there have been others where my words have provided last-minute detours from the abysses of others. Knowing that I have been partially responsible for another empowering themselves to make a positive choice keeps my flow constant and my gratitude is shown by the scattering of appreciative finders. You’re beginning to see an algorithm right?


Christmas is looming large and, as I scribe this, we are on the cusp of the last ten days. I’ve been in the workshop all weekend, honoring Christmas lists and bludgeoning my elves with my serrated candy cane. No that’s not right, I’ve been playing patticakes with my elves and, can tell you now, my sack is full to brimming and I’m greatly exhilarated by the prospect of lubing up and sliding into your chimney stack very soon. No mince pies please, somebody has been spreading malicious rumors that I’m actually fond of them and I can conform this to be utter drivel. Oh and for the record, would you mind terribly leaving me a tot of sherry on the front porch this year as it really is a tad too nippy for lactose. Thanks.


My own scribbled wish list contains very little right now. I wish to see the ecstasy in my boy’s ultramarine peepers as he rips through his wrapping paper. Screw any shameless crackers son, go straight for the largest present, that’s my boy. I know his mother will share that exquisite feeling. I have one more desire and that is for each and every one of you to laugh this Christmas. Give, forgive, share, care and, above all else, love. ‘Tis the season to be jolly after all.

Black Christmas

Be aware that Keeper has crammed the festive finders into each and all of the multitudes of articles coming your way. Erect the tree, dangle those deep red baubles, and wrap in intestinal tinsel. I shall lurch into your rooms after dark so ladies remember to sleep butt naked as it helps the day cum round quicker. I pledge to be gentle as I empty my sack into your stockings. As you open your sleepy eyes at dawn to marvel at the load you have just taken in, I will see your joy from a distant vantage point and I assure you the strings will be well tugged. Our first Christmas together…isn’t that just the most mind-blowing prospect?


Click here to read Breadcrumbs



Keeper of the Crimson Quill

Copyright: Crimson Quill: Savage Vault Enterprises 2013 (Revised Edition 2015)


My Kind of Advent




What is Christmas without a festive calendar of sorts? According to folklore, there are twenty-five days in the run-up to the big day thus I have assembled the same number of the most impish elves from my workshop to help count us down. In the interest of fair play, I shall not discriminate sex even though it pains me to scroll through yuletide logs. If like Keeper then I would suggest sticking to the odd days and ladies that means you get the evens. Mercifully, days 1 and 25 are both odd so, by my estimations, I still come out a winner. Rules are rules after all; I don’t write them, just adhere to them. Anyhoots, I can hear sleigh bells ringing. Time to cram those stockings.

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