Somewhere the Bells Ring was released this week on Wednesday, Nov. 9th.
The story opens with a quote from The Bells by Edgar Allan Poe
“Hear the sledges with the bells—
What a world of merriment their melody
How they tinkle, tinkle, tinkle,
In the icy air of night!
While the stars that oversprinkle
All the heavens seem to twinkle
With a crystalline delight;
Keeping time, time, time,
In a sort of Runic rhyme,
To the tintinnabulation that so musically wells
From the bells, bells, bells, bells,
Bells, bells, bells—
From the jingling and the tinkling of the bells.”
The Shenandoah Valley of Virginia December 1968
Every story has a beginning and an end, but Bailey Randolph wasn’t certain when hers began. Perhaps here at Maple Hill where time seemed to stand still in the gracious Virginia home built during the reign of one of the King Georges. The old house whispered secrets like murmuring pines and the passing years made scant difference, apart from slow ruin. Despite the ravages of the Civil War and Great Depression, Maple Hill still had a rare grandeur and blended elegance with wilderness, rather like the contrast of darkness and light in a Rembrandt painting.
The rambling, tree-filled yard merged with afield, up behind the house, that led to the wooded knob that gave Maple Hill its name. It was on her return walk from this vantage point, and the darkening woods behind her, when Bailey first spotted the figure in an upstairs window.
Swaddled in Aunt Meg’s scarf and coat with the collie frisking at her legs, Bailey stopped in the snow-encrusted grass to grab Captain’s collar before he bounded after a red fox. The dog forgot his chase—unusual—and lifted his head at the brick house rising between snowy trees much as she imagined an English manor might appear, though on a smaller scale. Smoke trickling from the chimney scented the crisp air and light flickered in a second story window. The figure passed in front of the glass.
Odd. No one stayed in that room. ~
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