Author Update for January

Well January has been a weird old month.

So far I’ve had a cold and avoided doing any real work for some time, however, I have made baby steps towards the next writing project.


This month the world lost a superb actor, icon and there are no words to describe the nostalgia and love for these people. Idols to many, and they enlightened the world with their own wisdom. Though for me the greater influence to my life, Alan Rickman. It is a sorry and profound loss to actor, story teller and wild dreamer alike.


There is something great and positive coming in the air though, with the briefest glimpses of the extraordinary, I cannot wait to see what it is that is coming.

Change is both devastating and wonderful. With it comes pains that the heart has never understood before and joys just as much.

This month, the first of the year has been very curious. I have itchy feet and I am preparing to dive into another story, bit by bit then all at once, just like when you fall in love. This project has grown into so much more than I thought it would be and so much more complex. I am doing all I can to keep up with it but I am not sure it will be finished for a long while. there are lots of plans and thoughts still growing and blooming. Its not about waiting for the right time with this story. It is more about allowing the idea and plot to grow fully and ripen. Hopefully soon I will have more time to dedicate towards it.

I hope that the change in the air is entirely positive for the time being I think we all need it.


I hope you are finding a little amusement in the first few chapters of Counting Corvids.


May luck and adventure be on your side!

ARA xxx

Counting Corvids Chapter Four Cheeky Extras


I am sure this one is pretty simple.

Blood sucking evil. Ruled by a Queen. If you kill the Queen her “minions” die with her. Those who have been turned but not taken blood/life will revert back to being whatever it was they were before.

They are mid-level demons that were out lawed.

When a man made a deal with the devil, he created vampires. They feast on blood, dislike sunlight and cannot be seen in silver backed objects.

And obviously, you want to kill one, aim for the heart with a stake.

Counting Corvids Chapter Four

Chapter Four: “Bite Me”


“So, this is going to sound weird, but you know after your friends with your ex and after a while it stops being awkward?”

“No, but continue”

“Well Ollie and I were getting on fine then the past few weeks all I’ve had is radio silence, I asked around but no one has seen him, or if they have  they aren’t telling me. I’ve got this horrible feeling something has happened to him.”
“I know this is an awkward thought but do you think he might have moved on? I’m sorry but from the sounds of it, it has been a while since you were together.”
“You’re probably right, it’s just a nagging feeling”
“Do you still like him in that way?”
“No, we just used to be good friends”
“Maybe its just time fore a fresh start, I am sure there’s someone out there just desperate to be Mr Madison Smith”

“Yeah I suppose, maybe, come on lets go.” The girls threw their jackets on and headed outside. “What a dive”
“Well it is called a dive bar”

“Yes, but it doesn’t have to be literal”

“Point well made”

“Indeed, hey Madi, are there meant to be this many bats around here?” Willow had asked as she adjusted her eyes to the darkness, to the strange forms hanging around the trees and lamp posts.

“What? No, get back in the bar” she tried to drag Willow at a run back through the car park. “Why are we running?”

“They aren’t normal bats, they are vampire bats”

“You’ve got to be joking, vampires don’t exist”
“Yes they do, now move” Willow allowed Madi to lead the way seconds too late, the bats started descending upon them, turned about in a cloud of bats Willow tripped. Madi had started slicing through the bats vanquishing them with a handful remaining they flew off making their escape. Madi helped Willow up.

“Are you ok?”

“I think so”
“No scratches?”

“No, you?”


“Come on lets go”


“I’m sorry my Queen, we were not warned of the Delicai-”

“You fools” the Queen’s voice echoed through the caves, “I told you to bring me the girl and you bring me nothing but defeat, you are a disgrace.”
“We were caught off guard by the girl your majesty” The Queen’s looming figure stood over her disgraced warriors.

“Perhaps your majesty, I might be of assistance?” The voice belonged to a smooth handsome figure curling his lips into a sinister grin.

“Joseph, do you have an idea my sweet?”

“Yes your majesty, let me infiltrate them, find the weak spot and hand it to you on a silver platter.”
“And what does this idea cost me?”
“Make me your king, let me earn their trust while the vile breathers are under attack, I look like the victorious hero, I hand you the information and bring you our trophy.”
“And if you fail?”
“I am at your mercy” the Queen’s lips twisted into a cruel smile before she nodded.


“So I have to ask, do vampires attack here often or?”

“Well no, they were outlawed by evil centuries ago, and well its not like us good guys would get involved with creatures that made a deal with the devil in exchange for eternal life now is it?”

“Well no, I just wondered-”
“That twilight stuff is totally unrealistic, humans think vampires are sexy, they have no shred of humanity left in them to be able to fall in love, they are fascinated by power not by some bizarre clingy, psychotic notion of love. They are cunning, don’t get me wrong, it’s just, we haven’t heard of vampire attacks in a long while thanks to the outlawing.”
“That’s nice”
“Well until today it was”
“No more espresso martinis for you tonight”

“Why? They are lovely”

“Yes but you don’t seem to want to shut up”

“What’s new? One last drink to steady our nerves and we’ll go?”

“Fine, is it bad that I’m starting to like it here?”

“The town or the bar?”

“It’s totally fine, are you sure you don’t want some?”
“No, no it’s fine I will stick to my virgin Cuba Libre, but thank you”
“Spoil sport” Setting up the bill Willow lead Madi out of the bar, intending to let Madi sleep off her espresso martinis from the sofa. Unfortunately Madi had other ideas, one being dancing in the car park singing “Its Raining Men” as the sky opened up pelting them with raining, soaking their clothes in seconds. Five renditions of Madi singing “Its Raining Men” while dancing like no one was watching later and she was finally ready to leave.

Heading through the exit they found themselves surrounded once more by three times the amount of bats as before instinctively Willow started firing at them while a thoroughly intoxicated Madi babbled on about fireworks leaning heavily on Willow while the swarm surrounded them.

In the darkness of swirling bats being vanquished the dim ember from the streetlight came back into sight as the swarm thinned to expose a man aiding their battle. Pulling the girls towards a near by shelter. “You girls alright?”
“Yeah, I think so… erm… thank you?”

“No worries, do you think the coast is clear?”
“Possibly sexy pants” Willow shot Madi a look before apologizing on her behalf.

“So do I get to know your names?”
“She’s Madi and I am Willow”
“Pretty, just like you, I’m J.B”

“Joseph Birch, most call me J.B but I’m no stranger to being called Jo”
“Well I believe my friend and I at least owe you a drink for your valiant rescue.”
“I couldn’t”
“You could, maybe just not tonight though, I need to get madam sober first.” She nodded in Madi’s direction as she leaned harder against her shoulder.
“O.k. a drink would be lovely” He flashed her a smile as they braved leaving their hiding place to head home.

Counting Corvids Chapter Three Cheeky Extras



These guys, the good guys so to speak. They are essentially positive energy.

But, they did damn the entire race of Elementals into an eternity in purgatory post death for meddling in a war.

They have a strong belief in the “Grand Scheme” and abide by the “good of the many”

They live with very strict ideals and will generally avoid meddling in the fates of natural beings. But tend to battle with evil, mainly demons.

They are run by a high council made of “Elders” also known as the “forces that be”.

They do try to avoid conflict, unless they deem it for the “greater good” or to save someone considered an “innocent” (unprotected by magic).

When it comes to conflict regarding the Elementals they believe in balance and peace so will avoid it at all costs.

But in all of this their inward focus has given neglect to watching over the enemies (evil) allowing them to organize and gather momentum.

Counting Corvids Chapter Three

Chapter Three: “A Walk in the Park”


Madi having insisted on giving Willow a tour was dragging a very uninterested Willow through shops, pathways, short cuts and so on, no amount of caffeine would lift her from dragging her heels. No matter how hard Madi had tried she couldn’t find a positive spin to put on the area even as a truck load of guys went past yelling crude suggestions at them in their inebriation.

Willow unable to resist herself shot a small flame at the tire, popping it causing the car to come to a halt. Madi looked thoroughly displeased as she pulled a giggling Willow roughly by the arm towards the park they had met in.

Madi cautioned Willow heavily over her actions and the risk of exposure. Willow was in no mood to listen as she strolled up to the bridge.

Something about using the fire inside her had reared her more impulsive reckless mood.

The girls noticed a shadow approaching behind them hoping it was a rather repulsive looking body builder, but instead they found themselves disappointed by the sight of a Quake demon they turned to cross the bridge just as four more stood in their way as another appeared on the other side, the girls were trapped.

Worse, they were growing into an outnumbered territory that wasn’t just a problem for themselves, many more and who knows what could happen.

The Quake demon standing behind them came closer and focused his attentions on Madi while Willow began bombarding the closest Quake on the bridge pushing them back with the flames, causing a domino effect as they backed into each other as they stumbled over and the closest had fallen over the bridge falling in a fiery blaze.

The three remaining on the bridge struggled to pull themselves up while Willow turned to help Madi vanquish her Quake. The two girls teamed up on the thing blasting at him repeatedly before he exploded in a fireball.

It wasn’t over, not that easily at least. The Quake on the other side of the bridge took his opportunity and threw a boulder towards the girls catching Willow and knocking her out leaving Madi left to do something.

Madi now facing the two quakes attempting to edge closer over the bridge on her own. Their rough, dry skin sounding like the slamming waves of the ocean against a rock as they edged closer and closer.

Willows eyes slowly opened as Madi struggled to fend them off and keep them from crossing the bridge. Without thinking or realising herself, Willow had caught sight of the boulder the demon had hit her with. Without knowing or thinking she felt her arm reach towards it, the boulder rose in the air before her, instinctively she threw her arm towards the Quakes advancing and the boulder followed the path slamming into the Quakes pushing them over the edge and down into the water where they burst into a small puff of orange smoke.

The Quake on the other side of the river stared at the girls before turning to run, the girls followed after him. “I didn’t know you could do that?”

“Neither did I, keep running, we have to get him” the girls emerged on the other side of the gates and the demon was gone. “How can you do that? You’ve only just come into your powers, that’s a high level gift?”

“How am I supposed to know? Shouldn’t we be more concerned that the Quake escaped?”

“Probably, fancy a coffee?”

“What’s wrong with a decent cup of tea?”

“Nothing, if you can find one” Madi said as she directed them towards yet another dingy little diner.

The girls sat down, Madi with her coffee, Willow with her tea that quite frankly tasted like dish water, “this is one really bad cup of tea.”

“What do you expect?”

“Something that doesn’t remind me of stewed socks.”

“That’s ridiculous” Madi took Willows cup and had a taste, “God that’s foul.”

“Told you. Something doesn’t feel right, you know, that thing escaping, somethings got to be going on.”

“What do you mean?”

“Well don’t you find it odd? First those two Quakes then today, it doesn’t really seem like a coincidence does it now?”

“Don’t worry about it Willow.”

“Famous last words”


“Nothing, come on lets go.”

Madi taking Willows lead left as she directed them back taking a short cut through an alley. Behind them a Quake appeared in the shadows following behind them. The girls turned to face him just as he went to send them flying he stopped and stared at something down the alley, the girls turned to see the shadow of a figure in the darkness, the quake bowed and disappeared.

The girls curiosity was peaked, they edged towards the shadowy figure which turned away from them and disappeared as he walked, no longer there. Stunned the girls reached the spot where it had stood, but found nothing just a dark patch of broken chippings and gravel.

Something, someone, some demon had stopped their near certain death.