Marion Eaton would love your feedback! Got a few minutes to write a review?
Write a Review

When The Clocks Stopped

By Marion Eaton All Rights Reserved ©

Mystery / Adventure


When lawyer Hazel Dawkins decides to write a few wills while waiting for the imminent birth of her first child, little does she anticipate the dramatic events that her decision will set in train. But all too soon the dark and violent past collides with the sun-warmed present and Hazel finds herself pitted against an implacable ancient evil that has stalked the mysterious Romney Marsh for centuries. As she fights with every fibre of her to right a great wrong, she knows that her very life is at stake – and with it, the life of her unborn baby. Yet to succeed, she must also change the destiny of a young woman who lived 200 years previously – for Annie’s fate is interwoven with her own. And time is running out ….


The silver light of a gibbous moon shimmers on the new green leaves of the ash tree. The horse stamps and jerks his head, jangling the bridle. I sway with the movement, soothing him instinctively. The sweetish smell of horse is thick about me as I wait at the crossroads. Stiff as I am in every joint and sinew, my body screams for me to dismount and stretch my legs, but I cannot. Some intuition, some sense of impending destiny, holds me motionless. I am aware it will not be long.

I flinch as the expectant hush is broken by the screech of an owl, eerie in the stillness that binds me to the saddle. She circles silently above me, seeking her prey. I watch until she glides away into the blackest shadows, where the sacred ash grove huddles beneath the escarpment.

My eyes seek the hallowed place where the Earth Mother is still honoured by man and maid on the sacred feast of Beltane; the ash grove to which they come at dawn, clad in white, and garlanded in green. May blossoms wreathe their brows as they stand side by side under a living canopy for their hand-clasping, their ceremony of rejoicing in union, the celebration of life itself in dance and song. This is the seven-treed sacred grove to which my beloved and I came not long ago; there we swore an oath to honour our love and there later, alone beneath the moon-silvered leaves we became one in the flesh.

It grows cold now, and I shiver. The horse pricks up his ears, listening intently. A small sound trembles towards me; perhaps no more than a fluctuation in the air current. Then the nightingale’s exquisite song fills the air with beauty. It is the signal. Jack’s signal.

I fire my weapon into the sky and wheel about, pulling sharply on the reins. We race off into the night. Lying close to the horse’s back, my head beside his ear, I ride hard. For a moment or two, as we gather speed, I choose those places where the low light gleams through the covering of cloud. I catch the sound of hooves in swift pursuit and know I have been seen. Now I guide my good companion into the gloom of the darkest shadows, allowing him to choose his own footing on the causeway. He gallops on.

I risk a backward glimpse. Shapes pursue us; legless in the mist rising from the Marsh, centaurs ride hard in a bow-shaped line. The triumph and excitement of the men who chase me is almost palpable. How long were they lingering near the crossroads where I myself had waited?

I let the gelding have his head because he knows these levels well. His hooves drum into the earth and I crouch low in the saddle, horse sweat hot-smelling in my nostrils. As I cling to his mane, I chance another glance but see nothing. I am sure we are gaining on our pursuers, but have they ridden yet into the trap where the Marsh is quicksand and will swallow horse and rider whole?

The moon is hidden now and I have no bearings. All I hear is a thrumming, thrumming, thrumming — and I know not whether it is my heart beating in my ears or the sound of pursuit. All I can do is ride.

Continue Reading Next Chapter
Further Recommendations

Catherine Edward: I enjoyed reading this story very much. Thanks for sharing it here. It was well written with good descriptions.Rachel travels to the Black Forest Island for an archeological dig and soon finds her team mates missing. When all the puzzle pieces fall into place it was something they weren't prepare...

re8622: The Last Exodus quickly grabbed my attention. Almost as soon as I started reading the story, I couldn't put it down. I found that the ideas the author put forth were very thought provoking given the turmoil we have seen gradually rise over the last several years. I felt that I could understand th...

Rouba Shishakly: The story is very engaging, I wasn't expecting the ending!! What a surprise. Great work overall.

Ginger: I like the idea behind this; the idea and story itself are great, However, I'm finding typos periodically and some of the sentences could be worded a bit more clearly. You might want to 'show' a little more than you 'tell,'

Deleted User: An unusual story, well worth reading. Good conversations, excellent prose, and keeps my interest, maybe because I was there, back in the day. You won't be able to pt this book down.

Deleted User: I can easily identify with the characters as having gone through those terrible times myself. The writer has skillfully brought yet another side of those days to life. A good read which I recommend to everyone.

Ilanea Zavala: I loved it and well I really hope you continue writing more to the story.

Maja1111: I particularly loved the vivid dialogues. Also, the atmosphere throughout the story is so specific, with a touch of a mystery. Really enjoyed reading it.

More Recommendations

NancyRichFoster: This second book of the Anmah Series was as awesome as the first story, I disagree with spare runner. The names were ordinary names with different spellings, which I for one loved. I am now going to read the third book in this amazingly awesome story!

Lauren Kabanyana: It's simply amazing, the story is touching and has you captivated while reading! I loved it! Would read it over and over again. I applaud the way this book was able to evoke a mixture of feelings. I felt everything the two main characters felt from the start to end, i would recommend this novel t...

Hali McGowan: when will the third book be done? I am absolutely hooked. I red the first two books within less than a week. I'm itching for the third one. The plotline is absolutely wonderful. I've never been much for sci-fi ish books. but you've got me hooked on this series

aaron10905: This is undoubtedly one of the best books written on here. I actually unistalled this app until someone told me about this story. I came back not expecting much, just to be drawn into the story and the characters. I would buy this book in real life, as long as another was promised shortly after.

nehmeyasmin: It was the most heart warming but heart breaking story ever and I want the next part right away. It kept me hooked until the end even though there were a couple mistakes it was truly amazing. I think this book could go far if it wanted to

sujitha nair: What's so distinct about this story was that it could easily be real.Praveena can be your classmate, neighbor or that girl you saw at the coffee shop today. The important decisions she makes and the dilemmas she faces, remind us of our own twisted lives.

{{ contest.story_page_sticky_bar_text }} Be the first to recommend this story.

About Us:

Inkitt is the world’s first reader-powered book publisher, offering an online community for talented authors and book lovers. Write captivating stories, read enchanting novels, and we’ll publish the books you love the most based on crowd wisdom.