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January 30, 2019

April Gale 3: April meets her grandfather and a few odd characters

This week's Words for Wednesday prompts are: last day; zealot; homeward; listen; midnight; always And/or: start; wicked; holiday; castle; infinite; goodbye

April Gale 3: April meets her grandfather and a few odd characters

The rain falls heavier and April wonders why they have not packed any umbrellas. Thankfully, the porch give them some cover.

"April, I need you try again before your grandfather sees us," Aunt Josephine says.

April grimaces at how her own face is looking a bit grim. "I'll try." Silently she chants: Please put me back in my body. I promise to be real good to Aunt Josephine afterward. Please make it happen. Please. Please. A slight tingling appears at the base of her spine but then it disappears. "I can't do it." She is exhausted. How does Aunt Josephine move in this body?

"We will have to try it again later. My body must not be able to tolerate such power. I need rest. You need rest." Aunt Josephine sounds a bit tired herself.

"Yes, may I help you?" Another woman, this time, a woman rather round and wide. Her cheeks are rosy and she has a frown on her full lips.

April turns to her and then feels the stiffness of her new body. "Oh, we are here to see Grandfather Tyler, I mean, my father. I am his daughter Josephine and this is his granddaughter April. We have already informed the woman from before - Mrs. Winters."

"That nosy ghost!" The woman mutters but not quite low enough that April hears every word. Then she lifts her head and smiles at April. "Mrs. Winters is no longer an employee of this house. Do not pay any attention to her. I am Mrs. Summer. Please come in. I will inform Mr. Tyler you are here." She steps into the house. "Frederick! Come here at once."

A straggly boy with arms too long and legs too shorts comes running out of the doorway. The boy has no hair but there are black dots on his head indicting hair of some sort. His eyebrows are gone as well. His large round skyblue eyes seems about to pop out of their sockets. April tries not to stare.

Frederick takes April's, well, Aunt Josephine's bag from April and the suitcase from Aunt Josephine, April that is. April wonders if she will lose her mind. She is beginning to be confused by who is who is.

Inside, the hallway ceiling seems to be far too high for a two story. Mrs. Summers appears again. "We didn't expect you for another seven hours but I will have tea ready. Come into the parlor. Just to your left."

The parlor is wide and the ceiling fades into the shadows. April wonders if they are inside a castle. Grandfather Tyler must be a zealot. He certainly did not spare any expense in making his home luxurious. Everything looks far too expensive for April to touch. She have always lived in small places because her father was poor. Compare to her last home, this place is a hundred times bigger.

A black and white cat - the hind side white, the front side black - wanders in and settles on a cushion on the window sill. It lets out a lion's roar before closing its eyes.

"That is Howl. She has been with us for 15 years." April hears her voice speaking and is surprised at how lady-like it sounded. She smiles at the thought but a shiver runs through her. It's cold in here. All the windows are opened allowing raindrops to fall onto the sills. The two fireplaces is not lit and the portraits on the walls are somewhat in the shadows as the only light comes from two lamps - one on either side of the long couch. The whole room is symmetrical.

April wonders if her mother had ever run through this place. Aunt Josephine had said her mother had the energy of a few wild horses. She had also said they looked alike as children. April had only seen one painting of her mother as a child with long tangled red hair and a wide grin. She didn't appear to be as wild as Aunt Josephine said she was.

A tall man with thin white hair down to his shoulders and a white beard and amber eyes appears in the doorway. He moves with a certain grandness. This must be Grandfather Tyler, April thought. She rushes forward and wraps her arms around him "Hello Papa," April says. She is almost as tall as he except she is in Aunt Josephine's body. The scent of wood and mint flows by.

"Madam, I am the butler." The man says and April pulls away. She laughs lightly. "Oh! I'm so sorry, I thought you were... I mean, how do you do. I am Apr...I am Josephine Tyler."

Aunt Josephine shakes her head at April. "The Tylers never had a butler." She moves close so that she is on April's other side.

The man chuckles. "Josey, is that you in there? You look awfully young."

Aunt Josephine lets out a sigh. "Yes, Father, it's me. I'm sorry April, I have to break my promise. "

April shrugs. She had not thought their charade would last anyhow.

"Ah, Josey, you couldn't have waited a little longer? I was just having fun with my granddaughter. Do you want to tell me what is going on here?"

"It is not me, Father. It is your granddaughter. Ask her what she have done." Aunt Josephine says and she tilts her chin slightly.

Grandfather Tyler chuckles again and turns to April. "My, my, is this how you travel, April? Don't you think using your Aunt Josephine's body a bit... cruel?" He cups the side of his mouth. "Cruel to you." He chuckles and stops with a raspy gasp. "But it's good to see my Josey smiling for once. Let me formally introduce myself. I am Harrison Tyler, your grandfather. And you must be April, my Lizzie's child." He holds out a hand.

"Grandfather Tyler..." April takes his hand and shakes it.

"Call me Harry. Everyone does, well, except Josey here."

"Father, I do not think it's proper for a young lady to call her grand..."

"Josephine— Josey, you must not be so strict. This is my house and I made the rules. April, call me Harry." Grandfather Tyler grins.

April shakes her head. "I think I prefer Grandfather Tyler. My father have always said I should address people properly and I agrees with him."

Aunt Josephine grins a little as if she approves.

Grandfather Tyler nods and chuckles quietly. "Very well, if that is what you prefer."

"And please, Grandfather Tyler, forgive me for making a mess. I have only been practicing my powers for nine months. My father, well, he bound my powers and when he died..."

"I know, my dear." Grandfather Tyler takes her hand, Aunt Josephine's hand, and gives it a light pat. "Your father was a good man."

April nods. "How did you know we have been switched?"

"Well, for one thing, Josey never calls me Papa. And another thing - the last time Josey was here, she threw a storm at me when I made her broke off that engagement. That was a very wet week. Mrs. Spring quitted the very next day. And you Josey, you left us a month afterward."

Aunt Josephine's lips is pursed in a half frown. Her eyes are bent in a defeated way.

"April, it's not a terrible thing to make mistakes but you must not hide as if you have done something terrible. For now, try not to do too much. Your Aunt Josey's mind and body cannot take the exertion. Now, let us enjoy some tea. Mrs. Summers! Get tea ready."

Mrs. Summers appears as if out of thin air. "Tea is ready, Sir."

"Very good, Mrs. Summers." Grandfather Tyler replies. "Mrs. Summer is our housekeeper. April, if you need anything, just ask her."

April nods.

"Come, ladies, you must be tired from your journey. Some tea will do you both good." He walks a few paces but then stops and turns around and glances at Aunt Josephine in April's body. "And Josey, do something about this rain. It has gone on long enough and I believe we deserve a reprieve."

Aunt Josephine nods. Grandfather Tyler leaves the room.

April starts to follow Grandfather Tyler but then turns to look behind her at Aunt Josephine. "You caused the rain?"

"It is rude to stare, April, especially with my face." 

"But you did caused it to rain for three days, right, Aunt Josephine?"

Aunt Josephine just lifts the corner of her lips and grins - a smile that is almost wicked. "You decide." She walks pass April. Mrs. Summer gives her a nod.

When April is about to pass Mrs. Summers, Mrs. Summers also nods at her. April returns the nod. She rubs her back. It aches and there is a strange tingling at the top of her spine.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

--- More Words for Wednesday over here ---


  1. I am thoroughly enjoying this - and liked the thought that Aunt Josephine's mind and body are tired, which impacts on April using them.
    It sounds as if prim and proper Aunt Josephine was herself a rebel in her day. Looking forward to reading more.

    1. ah yes, aunt josephine is quite a rebel, I like her to have a past that is different from what she is now. I'll see what that is when I write it.

      thanks for visiting, have a lovely day.

  2. I'm enjoying this too, and hope that with a bit of a rest, cups of tea and so on, things may get sorted for April and Josephine. How clever of her grandfather to know right away. It seems the whole family is magical.

    1. magic here is abundant but chaos is also present as well. I like the idea of a clever grandfather, not just with magic but with people too

      thanks for visiting, have a lovely day.

  3. A magical family drama. I like this story wery much. And apart for zealot I never noticed the words - that's how immersing your story is :)

    1. ... yet I wonder, now aunt Josephine has the powers of yout, what will se do next ... and can she change the bodies back again? I guess she did not swear off magic after all.

    2. I usually don't use many of the prompts as they don't seem to fit the story but I really like the word 'zealot' so I thought I put that in there. and 'wicked' too - I really like that word.

      aunt josephine is quite a powerful witch in her youth and still is, she just doesn't like using magic unless it's necessarily, or so I think, haven't quite figure out her character, I usually do that as I write along

      thanks for visting, have a lovely day.

  4. Oh I am loving these magical characters and their abilities. Well done!


    1. I'm loving them as well.

      thanks for visting, have a lovely day.


"To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow. So do it."
- Kurt Vonnegut