An elaborate ruse or visit from the supernatural?
You’ll have to decide for yourself when you read L.S. Fellows’ latest offering, the short story, To Make the Birds Cry.
Joe and Rita Finnegan’s dream of owning and running a winery is dying with the grapes on the vine in a dry, dusty, Cornwall during a drought.
In his first career, Joe worked and saved to realize his dream. After they meet, Rita comes to share Joe’s dream–they marry and become vintners.
A dry season turns into a drought intent on stealing the livelihoods of village residents.
Until a wizened old woman appears with an answer—they must come together and summon the Crying Gulls, whose tears will end the drought with thirty days of rain.
No one believes Cordelia, least of all, level-headed Rita Finnegan. And her husband won’t have anything to do with the foolishness as he sinks into depression.
So why does the town perform the ritual?
That’s part of the beauty of this read.
The town’s desperation to end the drought and the consequences that ensue will haunt them for years to come.
Or, are they haunted already?
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In the throes of a mid-life crisis, Joe Finnegan surprises his wife, Rita, with a new house: a dilapidated farmhouse with acres upon acres of vines.
Not one to walk away from a challenge, the couple pack up and head to wine country—in Cornwall. Hard work follows and their savings—and sanity—are tested, if not completely drained. Still, their dream to restore the estate to its former glory grows ever closer.
Until Mother Nature steps in to scupper their plans. Big style.
The worst drought in decades threatens their vines and pretty soon even their survival is in doubt. Seasoned farmers appear to abandon hope, Joe succumbs to depression and, not knowing what to do, Rita attends a meeting to “Survive Summer” at the Village Hall.
One woman, Mrs. Murdle, suggests they summon The Crying Gulls, and Rita, as the newcomer, should make their plea.
To save the family vineyard, she is willing to try anything, but a white feather headdress, a bonfire and a speech to a flock of birds seem beyond crazy.
What was once her husband Joe’s dream is fast becoming a nightmare as the vines dry up as quickly as their savings.
Charged with saving the whole village, she prepares for the weird rituals and sacrifices. But why does she feel she hasn’t heard the whole story about these legendary Gulls?
Genre: Short Reads/Folklore/Mythology
Release Date: January 1, 2018