If you haven't read the synopsis, beginning prophesy, the prologue and part 1 and 2 of Chapter One, you will want to scroll down and read it first to have context for what you are about to partake of. The following is the rest of Chapter One, which I'm releasing for feedback. I hope you enjoy ~ Rebecca
Without further aduie, Chapter Two:
CHAPTER TWO: Mr. McBeetle
Reese and Ian sat at their desks in the school area and eyed Mr. McBeetle. IIIIIIan didn’t mind being inside at this particular moment because it was a gloomy and rainy afternoon. It was his favorite type of weather, for it meant wool sweaters and hot cocoa in front of the fire. It also meant a better chance at tomorrow being a clear, warm day to rummage through the woods.
Now Mr. McBeetle wasn’t his tutor’s real name, as one could probably guess, but due to his appearance he was so-called in whispered voices among the household servants. His real name was, of course, Mr. McBee, but Ian had never seen a human being so resemble a bug. Mr. McBeetle was short and squatty with tiny limbs that attached to his rather rotund center. His round, thick head sat on his shoulders in a way that took away any view of a neck and it protruded slightly forward. If that were not enough, his thick coke-bottle glasses magnified his eyes so most people blinked and sort of looked away when speaking to him.
“Just like a bug,” they all said.
Mr. McBee was shy and unsocial in front of adults. Most people in town thought him to be a rather awkward fellow. However when he was teaching history or science he could make even the dullest, most uninterested student pay attention.
To top off his awkwardness, the small amount of hair remaining on his head tended to stick up and wiggle around whenever he became excited about a particular subject he was teaching. Ian and Reese had to squelch their giggles as his “antennae” would sway this way and that as he related stories to them of the World War or his many trips to India as a young lad. Nothing got him going like his favorite topic, though: the Welsh Celts. The Welsh Celts were Iron Age warriors from the very area the boys called home.
Reese was taught in the old ways like his ancestors at Winter Haven. Tutors filed in and out of Winter Haven, instructing him in everything from reading, math, and social studies to grammar, etiquette and physical education. In the eyes of the Williamses, though, perhaps the most important class he was taught was Welsh, the native language of their people.
Ian, however, attended public classes during the regular school year but was forced by his parents to continue his studies part-time in the summer at the manor. “It’s a wonderful gift offered by Mrs. Williams and you should be grateful,” was what he was told each summer as he was hunted down from the woods and practically hog-tied to be brought to the schooling area. But like when he had to be rounded up for bath time when he was younger, he always had a great time once he got there.
Ian was completely fascinated by the rich, colorful stories of the ancient Celts, the ancestors of the United Kingdom and Ireland who were not only brave warriors but who were also known for their love of various sciences, of nature and of the arts. Mr. McBee spun tales so real that Ian and Reese were sure they themselves had been a part of the ageless stories fighting as brave warriors, their names lifted in songs played on lyres by bards, as heroes worthy to be remembered through the centuries. The two boys would listen wild-eyed to their teacher--who looked especially insect-like when telling these stories-- and memorize the details of battle and song so that they could reenact them later.
After this particular class, when the rain was taking a short break, the boys got an idea that they thought was exceptionally brilliant. But first--on their way out of the classroom--they each took the special handmade treat Mr. McBee always placed for them on two small silver trays. Made from an archaic recipe handed down in Mr. McBee’s family, it was the single sweetest and most delicious thing the boys had ever tasted.
Next time, Chapter 3
Rebecca Dunning is an award winning writer who lives in beautiful Colorado with her husband and three children. She not only loves to read and write but also enjoys hiking, climbing mountains 14,000 feet or higher, traveling the world and about anything else out-of-doors. Rebecca is the author of two children's books:The Real-Life Princess and Beetle Hunter.