Web #writephoto

Thursday photo prompt

armour

 

Reaching this corridor had taken time, and my companion and I were exhausted. When was the last time human beings had visited these walls? We had to decipher puzzles, and pick complicated locks. We had lost our way many times, fearing to fall through some traps, and crash down to deep and horrific dungeons.

The surface of the armour was a dull grey, a thin dust covering those parts not hidden behind the cobwebs. Was this a sentinel? Or a witness, to the horrors that had closed the house to posterity? We thought of the Commendatore, the victim of a terrible crime. The man, or should we say the creature, who had worn the armour, was tall, and rich. The exquisite finish of the metalwork, the still luxurious leather of the joints, all showed this was a work of art, brutal, signalling the strength and power of its owner.

The corridor was dark, only faintly lit by a distant window. The same thin dust covered walls and the carpeted floor. The solicitor had not not known the details of ownership, merely that the property was for sale. For a fortune. There was a large park around the house, century-old trees. And many works of art inside, he’d said. The owner, whoever, or whatever that was, had not yet allowed visitors. We’d taken on ourselves to have a look.

There was very little furniture, but some ancient prints on the walls. The air was dry, not stale, as if, somehow, fresh air was sometime allowed to penetrate the house. We decided to take a look at the prints. A few steps away we were looking at a delicate drawing… of the same armour, with a text we could not read. We heard a faint noise, a light friction sound. There was now way this was possible…

The high helm, which must have covered the skull of the knight, was now turned toward us.

Sign #writephoto

Thursday photo prompt

 

sign

 

She read the legend under the picture: “the image shows a clouded sky beneath a full moon. There is a wordless sign showing only a pointed hat, of the kind often worn by wizards…”

How strange she thought, how and when had they managed to take this shot? The full moon was there alright, and the sign. But the clouds? There was none in this quiet corner of the Universe. She’d made sure of that. There was rain too, but, as visitors sometime said, it came from nowhere. She was proud of her work, the careful terraforming, the ever blue sky, the manicured landscapes, the small lakes… and, of course, the popular little village, with the delightful green, and the wizard cottage… The picture must have been doctored, edited as the saying went. Still, “they” hadn’t shown much respect, whoever “they” were.

Perhaps she should be more careful now when allowing those space transports to disgorge tourists on her planet. She should set rules, like “no editing of pictures!” Here there was no cloud, and the moon was always full. So she had ordained.

 

writephoto

Taco for breakfast #3TC

Three Things Challenge: PL17

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Today’s prompt: kangaroo, light bulb, taco

It was one of these mornings! But don’t ask me why… The kitchen light bulb popped out, the crazy poster of the kangaroo seducing the dormouse fell on the floor… and she, who must be obeyed, got up in a foul mood…

Hence me, writing this nonsense, drinking beer, and avoiding low-flying bombers tacos!

 

Controversy #SaturdayPrompt

Inspired by https://dailypost.wordpress.com/prompts/controversy/

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“No, you won’t do that, and as you well know, if you did, you’d be on your own!” The statement sounded pretty final, so I stayed silence: from then on I’d have to demonstrate I understood where I stood, in the order of things.

And I did. So we are, in a state of cease-fire, neither war, nor peace. I have made-up my mind of course, but I won’t risk a return to this controversy: I value the silence, the long lazy mornings, the quiet evenings. Is this wisdom? Or is it cowardice?

Picture: Orange, Helsinki, 2015, via osmaharvilahtiosmaharvilahti.tumblr.com

 

Pick your gadget #DailyPost #WritersWednesday

Your local electronics store has just started selling time machines, anywhere doors, and invisibility helmets. You can only afford one. Which of these do you buy, and why?

Anywhere door

 

“Really, I don’t know what you would do with a time machine!” she said, laughing, “even without one, you creep back on the past all the time… As for the future… On the other hand, an anywhere door offers some interesting possibilities, just imagine getting back into that old house, you know the one, where we met the ghost, and uncovered that precious manuscript from Gert from the Well: a treasure! As for the invisibility thing, I find it creepy, don’t you?”

I reflected for a little while. I did not need an invisibility thing. I’m an ace stealthy person , when I need to. And she’s right about the time machine (also, so dangerous, imagine being stuck in the time of George W. Bush’s presidency!) Yes, definitely the door gadget. Almost the ideal tool for us, thieves and occasional assassins…

#VisDare 114: Prepared #WritersWednesday

PreparedOn this far-away horizon we fly, age-old balloonists, at peace. I long thought, in the moonless nights, reading, dreaming, of those eons ahead of us – the universe ‘s infinity, the long journeys, our transformation, progressive, imperceptible, on the shores of time.

Old-fashioned I am – we are – in the eyes of the past centuries, albeit not our own: fashionable we might become, on those alien planets we visit in the midst of our everlasting sleep.

Explorers, yes, young still, without the edge of possible awake, for we will never return, to the old world, to the mother ship: lost we are, willing prisoners of an endless tale, one many times recounted – till now.

Now, we live the dream, sliding by foreign stars, through the intricacies of space, as we were convinced we would, one day, not by magic, but driven, prepared, accepting the fate of those who deny their own mortality…

#AtoZChallenge2015: Képi

Ah, le sable chaud… This incomparable military hat evokes La Légion, Jean Gabin, and so much of French lore, cinema… and military disasters!

“The kepi (English pronunciation: /ˈkɛp/ or /ˈkp/) is a cap with a flat circular top and a visor (American English) or peak (British English). Etymologically, the term is a loanword of the French képi, itself a re-spelled version of the Alemannic Käppi: a diminutive form of Kappe, meaning “cap”. In Europe, this headdress is most commonly associated with French military and police uniforms. In North America, it is usually associated with the United States Civil War, as it was worn by soldiers on both sides of the conflict…

The kepi was formerly the most common headgear in the French Army. Its predecessor originally appeared during the 1830s, in the course of the initial stages of the occupation of Algeria, as a series of various lightweight cane-framed cloth undress caps called casquette d’Afrique. These were intended as alternatives to the heavier, cloth-covered leather French Army shako. As a light and comfortable headdress, it was adopted by the metropolitan (French mainland) infantry regiments for service and daily wear, with the less practical shako being relegated to parade use. In 1852, a new soft cloth cap was introduced for campaign and off-duty. Called bonnet de police à visière, this was the first proper model of the kepi. The visor was generally squarish in shape and oversized and was referred to as bec de canard (duck bill). This kepi had no chinstrap (jugulaire). Subsequent designs reduced the size of the cap and introduced chinstraps and buttons. The kepi became well known outside France during the Crimean War and was subsequently adopted in various forms by a number of other armies (including the U.S. and Russian) during the 1860s and 1870s.

In 1870 when troops were mobilized for the Franco-Prussian War large numbers of soldiers either refused to wear the issued shakos or threw them away. The Emperor abolished the infantry shako for active service and replaced it with the kepi on 30 July 1870[1]

In 1876, a new model appeared with a rounded visor, as the squared visor drooped when wet and curled when drying. The model used in World War I was the 1886 pattern, which was a fuller shape incorporating air vents.

By 1900, the kepi had become the standard headdress of most French army units and (along with the red trousers of the period 1829-1914) a symbol of the French soldier. It appeared in full dress (with inner stiffening and ornamental plume or ball ornament) and service versions. Officers’ ranks were shown by gold or silver braiding on the kepi. The different branches were distinguished by the colours of the cap – see the table. Cavalry normally wore shakos or plumed helmets, reserving red kepis with light or dark blue bands for wear in barracks. General officers wore (and continue to wear) kepis with gold oak leaves embroidered around the band.

In 1914 most French soldiers wore their kepis to war. The highly visible colours were hidden by a blue grey cover, following the example of the Foreign Legion and other North African units who had long worn their kepis with white (or more recently khaki) covers in the field. With the adoption of sky-blue uniforms and steel Adrian helmets in 1915 to replace the conspicuous peace time uniforms worn during the early months of war, the kepi was generally replaced by folding forage caps. Officers, however, still wore kepis behind the lines.

Following the war the kepi was gradually reintroduced in the peacetime French army. The Foreign Legion resumed wearing it during the 1920s; initially in red and blue and then in 1939 with white covers on all occasions. The bulk of the French army readopted the kepi in the various traditional branch colours for off-duty wear during the 1930s. It had now become a straight sided and higher headdress than the traditional soft cap. This made it unsuitable for war time wear, and after 1940 it was seldom worn except by officers. An exception was the Foreign Legion who, previously just one of many units that wore the kepi, now adopted it as a symbol.”

Image: “1970-Legion-sapeur” by Jp.negre at fr.wikipedia – dessin de jp Négre d’aprés une photo de la revue “Képi Blanc”. Licensed under FAL via Wikimedia Commons – https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:1970-Legion-sapeur.jpg#/media/File:1970-Legion-sapeur.jpg