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, December 4, 2013

In From The Cold - part 1 - by Sven Pertelson

From the warmth of the park café Tom could see the old tramp shuffling along towards the frozen pond and the shelter. All the paths to the shelter were pristine unbroken snow. No-one had been near the shelter today and as it had not snowed since yesterday sunset that meant it had not been visited over night.

Tom slid his small video camera nearer the edge of the table and started it up, turned the display to a good angle and zoomed it in for a clear shot of the tramp. No luck with a view of the face, yet, and the tramp had stopped, looking at the path to the shelter. The man turned and started to walk back the way he had come. Tom mused, he was either an innocent member of the public, the pick-up man or perhaps even the drop-off man who did not want to leave tracks. No way to tell yet.

Time for another coffee and perhaps a bite of breakfast. As stake-outs went this was better than the usual ones where he would have a Thermos of stale coffee and whatever pizza he could order. His relief should be here in an hour or so. There was only so long you could sit in a café before the staff started to wonder who you were.

He logged on to the free WiFi with his smart phone and sent his updated observation log to the secure server at headquarters. He could send some screen grabs from the video when he got home, fiddling with memory cards to put it on his phone in public would draw too much attention. He must ask the quartermasters department if they could fit a bluetooth link on a video camera then he could do it in almost real time.

He had just finished his breakfast when a beep from his phone alerted him to a text message. His relief was in place. That was well done, he had seen several people come into the café but had not spotted anyone he knew or who had struck him as someone from the service. Must be an addition to his section. Tom carefully scanned the room, Nobody made eye contact. They would know who he was from the beep from his phone.Time to give up the guessing game and handover. Tom typed in a short reply, 'Welcome to MI5' and sent it. A pretty young girl two tables away looked up and gave him a shy smile at the same time as a grizzled older man near the door also looked up and stared at him. Tom hoped that his new colleague was the former.

He tidied his belongings into his briefcase, moved over to the till by the door and asked to settle his bill. He traded some idle chit-chat with the cashier, complemented the standard of coffee and food and said he would certainly be visiting again. As he headed for the door he chanced another glance at the girl who had smiled at him. She smiled again and tapped her highly painted nails on her phone on the table. Same phone model as Tom's, now that could not be co-incidence, could it ?

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