What are Ozlandish Writings?

From July 2010 to December 2014 we ran OZLAND PICTURE STORIES as described below. Sadly though the number of writers reduced over the years and we decided to call it a day. We leave these as a record of the good times we had.

Are "You" ready to challenge your writing skills? Then participate in our OZLAND Picture Stories writing series at The Ozland Art Gallery.

Each month a new picture will be picked, from our OZLAND Artist of the Month collection, with different themes. Your goal is to write a 500-1000 word... poem... essay... or story about the picture picked. This is a chance for you to challenge your writing skills each month. Story can be written in ANY genre... sci fi... romance... ghost... fantasy... fiction... non-fiction... biography... mystery... historical... whatever your writing genre... feel free to experiment. Send your writing inworld to Sven Pertelson as a notecard to have it included on the web site. We meet at the The Ozland Art Gallery each Wednesday at Noon and 6pm SLT to read the latest submissions on voice. More Information

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Pyramids - by lillian Morpork

I felt decidedly out of place as I drove my rattletrap Thunderbird along the curved driveway up to the mansion of Sir Wilfred Maitland. Part of the driveway ran through a forested area and debouched into an open area of formal lawns and gardens.

To make matters worse, when I parked the Bird he looked even more tattered and worn, sitting next to a well-polished Mercedes, with an equally shiny Rolls Royce nearby, both in perfect condition. For a couple of minutes I sat, gathering my courage, wondering if I was about to make a great fool of myself. But I had worked hard to get this appointment, so I took a deep breath and stepped out of the car, briefcase in hand.

I walked across the gravel to the front of the steps, mounted, and rang the bell. In a very short time the door opened, and I almost gaped in astonishment. There stood Jeeves, the perfect English butler from the comedy series Jeeves and Wooster! Even his voice fit, when he welcomed me and invited me in. "Good morning, sir, I am Benedict, Sir Wilfred's butler. What may I do for you?"

"Good morning," I responded. "I have an appointment with Sir Wilfred. My name is Major General Alfred Worrall, retired astronaut." The butler gave another slight bow.

"Follow me, sir." he led me down the large hall to a door, opened it, and ushered me in. "Have a seat here, sir, while I inform Sir Wilfred you are here." With that, he left, closing the door behind him.

I found myself in a large study, the walls lined with shelves of books. There was a desk in one corner, and something very shiny sitting on top. I just had to see what it was that gleamed so in the beam of sunlight slanting through the window, and went over to look.

It was a square of what looked like gold, carved in an odd way. I bent closer, and picked it up. It was about six inches square and a quarter inch thick. It had to be solid gold, it was so heavy. It was intricately carved in triangles, each in a different pattern. The one on the left looked familiar, and I held up closer, resting it on the tips of my fingers. Yes, it was the same! As I stared, I felt myself entranced, held by the patterns, and spiraling down - or was it up - toward the points that met in the centre. Only there was no centre - each pattern was separated from the others. My mind spun in confusion, and I began to feel the same fear I had felt that other time. Then I felt a hand on my shoulder, heard a voice calling my name, and the artifact was lifted from my hand.

"Major Worrall, are you all right?" the voice sounded worried.

I managed to take a deep breath, and turned. Sir Wilfred was beside me, holding the artifact and studying me with a worried frown. "I'm sorry," he said. "It was careless of me to leave it lying out like that." He placed it back on the desk, and held out his hand.

Slowly, I came back to myself, and told him "I'm ok, Sir Wilfred. I shouldn't have touched it, but - well - that's what I had to see you about. The carving, with the clothed figures - I've seen it before. On, well in, the moon. A big, golden, pyramid. What just happened now is only a faint echo of what happened to me then."

He stared at me, stunned, and obviously wondering if I had completely lost my mind. "Perhaps we should sit down and you tell me about it." he suggested, pointing to two comfortable leather chairs. "Benedict, bring us some" he paused, turning to me, "what would you prefer? tea or coffee?"

"Tea, if you please, strong and black." I said. Benedict bowed and left, closing the door quietly behind him.

“Now, what is this about a pyramid in the moon?"

“On my last trip to the moon, to help open the Observatory on the far side, I spent several days exploring. I found an odd mountain – not rugged and sharp like the rest, but smoother. It looked almost like a weathered volcano. While I was examining the base, I stepped on what looked like solid ground, and found myself sliding down into a deep hole of dust. Luckily, I was tethered to my Rover, and was able to force my way back to the surface by climbing the rope.

“I moved the rover closer, and used the robotic arm to dig down. It went down at a slant, almost too far for the arm to reach. At last I was able to climb down, and found a cave like opening. I didn’t dare do any more exploring then, and went back to my campsite.

“The next day I took the big digger, and went back. It took me three days to excavate part of one side, and another week to remove the soil as far up the mountain as the rig would reach. Finally, I had to go back to main base and get help. We worked for a month, but at last we had one whole side bare. It was carved just like the one triangle on your plaque. It stood as tall as the pyramid of Khufu, at Giza.

“We reported the find to Earth, and they Ok’d a full exploration, but slapped a ban on letting the information spread. In time, we had the whole thing cleared. It was the most awesome sight I have ever seen. We found an entrance right where I had fallen in the hole, and I was given permission to explore. I packed supplies, made sure I had extra air, and that my radio was fully powered up, and set out.

“At first, it was just like the Khufu pyramid, with a long tunnel leading to a subsidiary burial chamber, like the Queen’s chamber in Khufu’s. About two thirds of the way to that chamber, where the Grand Gallery is, another tunnel ran down a short way, and bent back in a longer tunnel. By now I was far under the moon’s surface. At the end of this tunnel was a chamber about fifteen feet square, and filled with treasure.

“By this time, I was getting tired, so I went back up to the burial chamber, found a place to sit, and called the others. Two more men were on their way in, so we agreed to meet in this chamber. I used the time to rest and suck up some rations, and some water. I was so tired that I fell asleep, and that’s how they found me.

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