Saturday 14 May 2011

#Romantic Friday Writers First Challenge - my dire moment entry, Moonlight and Venice.

Hey, here's my first Romantic Friday Writers post! Like most blogspot clients around the world I've had no access to blogger for 2 days! So my Friday post is actually on Saturday! Judging by your emails many of you have given up and will try again next week. Please still post! You spent all that time on your Dire Moment and blogger gave us one suitable to the theme!

Let's get lost in Venice. I was reminded I had this story in my archives when I wrote about Venice on my L'Aussie Travel blog for the A-Z Challenge, so I dusted it off, took the delete key to it and edited it down to a small snippet to fit into the 400-word criteria. I hope you can get lost in Venice with me.....
 Moonlight and Venice

Darkness floated over the city like a black cape, its edges reflecting the glint of the moon.

She dressed in mask and costume then drifted into a white, starry world. She was ready to lose herself in Carnevale where the power of the mask lured revellers into lurid rites of celebration.

Running through streets with bands of masked and costumed figures, she was led past candle-lit palazzos dusted with snow. In the cold of the floating city, she felt time burning as she danced with masked men and drank wine that flowed incessantly in a hothouse of pleasure.

She ran down slippery, dimly-lit streets, going deeper and deeper into the unknown Venice.

A party of people carried her along a narrow and treacherous path.

Out of the darkness, a man grabbed her hand as fireworks exploded high above the Grand Canal.

The stranger led her upstairs to an apartment where they slow danced. The party was so crowded that they simply swayed from side to side in a room blue with smoke. The masked women were ethereal beauties in rustling silky gowns while the men dazzled in capes, tight trousers and shiny boots. Her man was masked but her imagination raced to fill in every detail of his features.

‘I’m Count de Rozario,’ he said.


‘All men are counts at Carnevale.’

She bowed. ‘My count.’

‘My servant,’ he said, then disappeared.

She walked again through the snow, her feet freezing. Men lounged in alleyways, smoking, watching her from behind lacquered masks.

A man appeared from out of the mist, alone.

‘My count.’


He took her hand, hurrying her through passages and beneath arches until they came upon a magnificent doorway. He led her up a flight of stairs to a large bedroom, dazzling in moonlight, its rich red furnishings and lush brocade setting her senses on fire.

His mouth tasted like wine, sea and smoke as they surrendered themselves to the madness of the night.

He tensed.

Footsteps on the stairs.

‘My contessa comes. Go.’

He thrust clothes into her arms and pushed her onto the balcony where she huddled, shivering with cold and shock.

The contessa passed by so closely she could have reached out and touched her.

‘Ah, Contessa, come, I’ve been waiting.’

‘I, too, my count.’

Tears running down her frozen cheeks, she tiptoed down the stairs into the bewildering night, lost in Venice's black cape.

I hope you liked my Dire Moment. If you'd like to write a romance story of this length (400 words) on a Friday, go here to the Romantic Friday Writers blog to read how...

Photo source here.


Anonymous said...

Wow! That's great, Denise. Truly a dire moment. So well written. A wonderfully surprising ending. You're good!!

I'm brain dead today, partly because of Blogger going down, and other things. So I'm not getting anything up. Don't have anything anyway in the romance line. But I have read Roland's awesome story, and now yours. And today also was my 71st birthday. Had lots of happy wishes through Facebook, both friends, bloggers, and family.

Have a great weekend, what's left of it for you Aussies!

Denise Covey said...

Ann! Happy Birthday to you!!!! I hope you're having a great day! I haven't been on facebook awhile! But I'm pleased you made the time to read a couple of Romantic Friday Writers' stories! Glad you liked mine. I'm off to read Roland's now. I know it'll be awesome! Who can match him?


Romantic Friday Writers Second Challenge - Lost.

J.L. Campbell said...

I like it. A tale of adventure, romance and heartbreak in so few words. Rich sights and smells too. I felt like I was in Venice.

Denise Covey said...

JL: That's good. You were supposed to so I was at least successful in that.


Romantic Friday Writers Second Challenge - Lost.

Roland D. Yeomans said...

As Tonto was known to say : "Never trust a man in a mask!" I did feel that I was in Venice as well. A great evocative job.

And thanks, Ann, for the very kind words. Happy Birthday, too!!! Roland

Denise Covey said...

Roland, glad you got a chance to stop by and that you liked your little trip to Venice.

Oh, those masked men!


Francine Howarth said...


Ooooh Oooooh!!! With Venetian masks on my bedroom wall, this was like being back at Carnivale! Lovely atmosphere, and great twist: the bastard!


Margo Benson said...

I love Venice and, like Francine, have masks on the wall. Oh, Denise, I was THERE!! The writing is lovely, lovely and the ending....Nooo!

Mine's up now, but I feel very much the to read the others.

Wishing Ann a very Happy Birthday!

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

That's why I don't write romance!
Good job, Denise.

Glynis Peters said...

Poor thing, most definitely a dire moment!

Ann said...

Throughly enjoyed my little trip to Venice. Very well set. I loved the twist at the end.

Denise Covey said...

Francine: So was the contessa no doubt, doing her own thing!

Margo: Okay, hon, be right over.

Alex: And why not!

Glynis: Very.

Ann: Glad you liked it!


N. R. Williams said...

Well done Denise. I have yet to sign up but I intend too. I had questions for Francine and then got a little confused thinking I had to join RWA. Now I'm going to Roland's.
N. R. Williams, The Treasures of Carmelidrium

DEZMOND said...

ooooh, what can be more great than a romance in Venice :))) The air in Italy is full of love molecules :)

Lydia Kang said...

That was great! What excitement. Makes me with I could see this moment in film.

Kittie Howard said...

Great job, Denise! I could imagine the Grand Canal, San Marco's Plaza and the warrens off it, felt the wintery cold, but didn't see the ending coming. Talk about a dire moment - wow!

Suzanne Ross Jones said...

Terrific stuff, Denise.

Well done.

Denise Covey said...

Nancy: Thanks. I hope you take the plunge. Love to read some fantasy snippets.

Dezi: Thanks for reading and enjoying.

Lydia: Yes, I can picture it!

Kittie: Pretty dire. Thanks for stopping by.

Suzanne: Thanks for visiting and commenting.

I appreciate you all!


The Words Crafter said...

OH!!!! And I was really into the whole scene, too. And he's married!!!!! Well done. I was high and low and angry in just a couple minutes, bravo!

Denise Covey said...

Becky: Thank you so much!

Charmaine Clancy said...

Oh oh - I think I hooked up with that count once too...

Great writing Denise, and very excited to hear I might bump into you at the Brisbane Writers Festival. I'm really looking forward to it :)

Wagging Tales - Blog for Writers

Denise Covey said...

Charmaine: Thanks for stopping by. Oh, that count! Roll on September!


Laura said...

This was great - I felt like I was there, tasting and smelling and getting whisked along... and I do enjoy a good bastard!

Suze said...

I love your post by Paula Williams at the top of the page!! (I rarely use two exclamation points, but that's how much I love it.)

dolorah said...

That was awesome Denise. My emotions were pulled in so many directions: flighty, ecstasy, passion, then finally shame. I've been to Venice, but this was a whole new experience.

Well done.

400 words, and a specific theme? Perhaps I can try out some of the Friday romances.


Denise Covey said...

Laura: Ha ha, don't we all, but in fiction only!

Suze: I love it too and don't want to take it down.

Donna: Thanks for running through Venice with me. I'd love it if you joined us. Lost is our next theme.


Ella said...

I loved it; it had so many elements. I loved the mystery, mystique and intrigue you provided. The setting was soo romantic and set the tone for passion. I loved it~

Sarah Tokeley said...

I read a lot of Romance and occasionally think I might like to try writing in that genre. Then I read something like this and decide to leave it to the experts :)

Now to buy a plane ticket to Venice!

Denise Covey said...

Ella: Thanks for coming by and I thank you for your kind words.

Sarah: I think you liked my story. Yes, Venice here we come!

Duncan D. Horne - the Kuantan blogger said...

Like the quote at the top of the page. This is the first time I've been to this one of your blogs. Thanks for dropping by my blog again!

Duncan In Kuantan

Denise Covey said...

Duncan: Hi. Thanks for coming by. I mean to keep visiting Kuantan.

Anonymous said...

Gosh I truly felt the emotion of this piece. Wow! Clear lump in throat. Excellent writing.

Looking forward to seeing which of your tagged answers match mine.:O)

Denise Covey said...

Madeleine: High praise coming from you.

You'll see my answers very soon.


Kittie Howard said...

Hey, thanks for stopping by. You've given me a perfect diversion - hub's at the airport en route to visit his brother in Phoenix, Arizona; I've got this massive project to really oil down the furniture *groans* -

Thanks for the upcoming tag...I'd love to play along (please provide instructions as I was tagged before and I'm pretty sure I screwed it up.)

The family farm I blog about is just out of the flood plain. If you see Krotz Springs on the news, you're in the area. The Morganza Spillway is about 35 miles from the farm. It's a westward loop. I'm heartsick about it all. But what's happening has to happen. Each year, those in the flood zone receive a letter about what could happen. Still, South Louisiana is on its knees.

Anyway, your FWB is a little miracle that I thank you for. I just don't have it in me right now to blog about the farm so am delighted to have Fridays to divert my interests. Plus, it's fun!! I have an idea building as to how Yvette will be lost!

Anonymous said...

Oh that's wonderful Denise, I could easily imagine that scenario in Paris too. I must tell my NZ Romance Writers about this Friday thing!

I bet you would be interested in flash fiction or poem for the stars, the entry date is September so lot's of time to practise. If they go in the anthology they will literally go to the stars that you write about. How cool is that? I'll email you details.

Inger said...

A true old-fashioned romance. Poor thing, I somehow know how she must have felt. I'm so glad you found my blog so I could discover yours.--Inger

Talli Roland said...

Beautiful, Denise! Loved reading this. Thank you for sharing!

G Blechman said...

Very nice. I love the Carnevale twist--that it's not just a costume party but the real thing. (I'm a huge fan of Carnevale.) I think I shall start taking part in these friday romance stories. Thanks for posting.

<3 Gina Blechman

Golden Eagle said...

Definitely a dire moment there! Great writing.

Denise Covey said...

Kittie: How's the furniture oiling going? Urh! Let's hope these floods aren't more devestating than first thought.

I'm glad RFW found you at just the right time. With the tag, just copy my post and do your own! Easy peasy!

Catherine: It'd be great if you passed the RFW idea the NZ Romance Writers. Great! Thanks for the email and heads up on the stars.

Canyon Girl: The feeling's mutual. Glad you liked the story.

Talli: Thanks!

Gina: Thanks. Will be so good if you take part. The more the merrier as they say!

Golden: Thanks for visiting!


Deniz Bevan said...

Oh that's lovely. So ethereal and so sad. I really felt the cold at the end. Love the link of lured and lurid.

Denise Covey said...

Deniz: Thank you! Bit of alliteration...

Nas said...

Oh, I read through this story but felt sad at the end for her. Poor her!

Denise Covey said...

Yeah, very sad Nas. Thanks for reading.

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