Sunday, December 15, 2013

Theo-ries (Part Two) or Things I Learned While Theo was on the phone to some time bestie John Cusack.

1. Theo is not currently being played by Jeremy Piven.
2. However for the whole month of July, the versatile Hollywood actor and he did switch places.
3. I didn't notice it because they look so similar.
4. And because of how versatile an actor Piven is.
5. Also, Theo plays Mr. Selfridge in one of the season two episodes. All he would tell William was that is was the one "where the American man teaches the Britons how to shop extravagantly"
6. William and Piven didn't get on, and kept to separate sides of the cage.
7. Piven's side was the one with the water supply, which William would grow to regret.
8. We had a heat-wave in July (possibly orchestrated by Piven) and William became very thirsty.
9. He used to wait till Piven was asleep and then sneak over to the water bottle for a quick guzzle.
10. Piven started using a marker to keep tabs on the water level.
11. Which was very Theo of him and not a bit fair.
12. William misses him a little bit and is considering sending him a Christmas card.
13. He hated him, like, pure hated him.
14. But he was very charismatic.
15. While Piven was in the cage, Theo divided his time between Malibu, California and Chicago.
16. He got a baseball cap with the Chicago Bears logo on it, which he now wears almost all the time.
17. The Chicago Bears are a football team.
18. Theo is a loser.
19. He is such a loser.
20. It isn't fair that he is virtually indistinguishable from Jeremy Piven.
21. While weekending in NYC, Theo ran into Katie Holmes and they exchanged pleasantries.
22. William hates Theo.
23. On second thoughts, William does not hate Theo.
24. He has too much contempt for him.
25. Piven is a far worthier nemesis.
26. William wishes he would come back. He's worked out a water rota and read up about Buddhist Judaism and Stagecraft.
27. Piven is not as tall as one would assume, which is why he was able to comfortably live in a guinea pig cage for the whole month of July.
28. they say that about a lot of celebrities though. That they're shorter when you meet them in real life.
29. I mean, it's not like he's special or anything.
30. Compared to Theo he is, but that's no great achievement.
31. Although, Theo does know how to use a smart phone now.
32. And can do three cool fighting moves and six cool dance moves.
33. He learned these moves on set, but he won't say what he was filming.
34. William would really like to know what Theo was filming.
35. William wants Jeremy Piven to measure Katie Holmes for him and also to give his CV to Terrence Malick
36. But he has too much pride to ask.
37. If you don't have pride, you have nothing, Deirdre, nothing.
38. You might as well give up.

Monday, December 2, 2013

Theo-ries (Part One)

It was Monday. Five o' clock and dark already. The past 24 hours had been a quiet puzzle. Traffic hummed through the streets and I turned something over and over in my mind like a bad penny. It wasn't a penny though. More of a theory. A theory I wanted to gather evidence to support. I needed something concrete. Something solid. There is very little on this earth more solid than the portly form of William. I looked at William.. William looked at me. I looked at William. Theo was doing a phone interview so we had some private time.
"William?" I began.
William looked at me.
"do you ever...?" I continued.
William looked at me.
"have any suspicions..." I proceeded.
William looked at me. His eyes were very black and very shiny.
"...that Theo isn't really Theo?"
William looked at me. He did not blink. I carried on. "Because recently. And maybe not so recently as well, only I was too blind to see it. He's been bearing an extraordinary resemblance to, oh God, this is going to sound crazy..."
"Carry on" said William, my Guinea Pig who can speak the king's english and also has a time machine.
"Is Theo. Is Theo Theo being played by Charismatic actor Jeremy Piven?"
William's face lit up. "I was wondering where you were going with that line of enquiry. No, Deirdre. No he isn't."
"Thank God. They do look alike though."
"Very Alike. It all started when Piven grew that beard to play fancy supermarket beginner Mr. Selfridge for that show Mr. Selfridge. Have you seen it?"
"Only bits. He's very good in it."
"Oh I don't doubt it. Jeremy Piven can basically play any role at all. As long as it's a charismatic role."
"Most roles are."
"The way he plays them." William's face lit up. He was clearly experiencing some emotions.
"Sounds like you're a bit of a fan."
"Let's just say, he won me over." William had stopped looking at me. He was now looking far into the distance, beyond my shoulder. "But we can't talk now." William looked at Theo. Theo was polishing his three consecutive Emmy awards. "there are more things you should know. But you'll have to wait until the buddhist Sabbath."
"Theo will be gone then, off to meditate and consult his Rabbi."
"I didn't know that Theo was a Jewish Buddhist."
"There are a lot of things about Theo that might surprise you, Deirdre." said William, looking shifty.
Theo smiled at me in a charming manner. I caught myself fixing my hair and applying some lip gloss. It wasn't that I cared if he thought I was pretty or anything. It's just he was so damn versatile. I didn't want to let him down with my lack of charisma and untamed eyebrows.
"I wonder if I should get some preventative botox?" I mused.
William sighed "It's basically too late now, you've already begun to pre-wrinkle. Look, we'll talk on the Buddhist Sabbath."
"When is that?"
"Whenever Theo says it is. It's his culture."
I'm fairly sure the one on the right is Theo.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Partially Factual William Update

I am going to write to you about William. William is sick. He has pneumonia and his back teeth are too big for his mouth which makes him unable to chew food properly. This is frustrating for him because he’s hungry and getting syringe fed is not as fun as munching on vegetables, or better yet, munching on vegetables while Theo goes hungry. Theo is not going hungry at all. William has lost a lot of weight- he is now 0.7 kg and Theo is probably about a stone or something. Imagine a baby seal with pink ears and feet and you are basically picturing Theo. We have begun to suspect that he has been eating for two for a long time. Not that he is pregnant. Small chance of that with all the sex he hasn’t been having. “It’s not my fault I’m a virgin” he exclaims sometimes, á propos of nothing “I just haven’t met the right girl. How could I, when my only friend is him?” Theo looks at William accusingly. William says nothing, though he could say plenty. About Theo eating all of his food. About the time that Theo stole William’s time machine. About William not liking Theo, not really. Nibble nibble groom.The implication that they are friends hangs pointlessly in the air. Friends don’t barber friends.

Barbering is a thing that Theo likes to do when he is nervous. It does not involve a small scissors and I am glad of this because Theo is notoriously clumsy. William used to mount the stairs with a quiet grace and bound up them like a river of plump lightening. Theo, not so much. Seals can’t climb stairs that are as tall as them. Barbering is when one guinea pig does nibbling on another guinea pig’s sleek fur, by way of coping with nerves. Theo only does it rarely because William won’t let him get away with it. But William has been slipping. You tend to slip when you are the victim of pneumonia and big teeth.
“I wish I could time travel back in time and make myself better” he says to me, when Theo’s out of earshot. “But you have to be quite healthy to withstand the intense physical toll going in a time-machine takes on a small rodent’s body.”
“Maybe that is why you got sick in the first place.”
“Nonsense! My time machine is awesome. And, were it a choice between being healthy and time-locked or poorly and adventurous, I’d choose the latter every time.”
“Would you though?” I look at him. “Would you?”
“If I die, will you feed my body to a dinosaur? My body AND Theo’s body. Not to the same dinosaur, because that would be weird. But I quite like to think of my body nourishing a long-dead awesome thing.”
“Theo isn’t dying.”
“Oh he won’t outlive me Deirdre. I’ll see to it. And if I don’t have the energy to finish the job you’ll have to step in.”
He looks very serious as he says this.
“He’s not a very nice guinea pig.”
“Ah he is.”
“No, you’re thinking of me.”
“Oh yeah.”
“He has grown fat upon my hospitality for two years now. That is sufficient. I will  not have him supping ‘pon my hearth when I from off this mortal coil have shuffled.”
“You’re talking funny”
“What year is this?”
“For realsies?”
“Then how the hell did you let me catch pneumonia? Get me to a vet asap. Maybe even two vets. I feel like I am important enough to warrant two vets.”

I concur, and two vets later, William is on the mend.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

Identity Makeover.

Theo has an alter ego. Well, not so much alter. This time last week, he started refusing to answer to his name. Because Thelonious Monk isn’t a cool enough name apparently. It was plenty cool enough for the first Thelonious Monk, mind. But not for Theo. Excuse me. Not Theo. Lexington. Lexington Hardbiscuit 2000.
Oh God.
Lexington Hardbiscuit 2000 is a futuristic sexlord. First name Lexington, surname Hardbiscuit. The 2000 is to make it futuristic.
“The year 2000 happened ages ago, Theo.”
“Excuse me?”
“Sorry, Lexington.”
“Lexington What?
“Lexington Hardbiscuit…2000”
“Thank you. Yes, I know what year it is, Deirdre. I just think there is something intrinsically futuristic about the number 2000. I think it is the three zeroes.”
“Okay, who?”
“I am NOT saying your name again.”
“and FYI, there is NO such thing as a Sexlord.”
“FYI, there totes is.”
“What is it then?”
“What is a sexlord….?” His small face grew serious, and he stared up high above the ramparts of Castle Von Guinea “…What is a Sexlord?”
“That is my question, yes.”
Let me finish. Rude. Anyway. A Sexlord is an adventurer voyaging on the cusp of a dream through time and sex. A sexlord is he who will ALWAYS have a girlfriend. A sexlord is cool. He is not as other Guinea Pigs. He is not as William. He is better.”
“William had a time machine first, you know…” It is true. Lexington’s time-machine isn’t even his. It’s just William’s with a hastily nibbled sign stuck on it with Sellotape. The sign says “This time machine belongs to Lexington Hardbiscuit 2000, Sexlord, poet and erotic adventurer. It only LOOKS like William’s time-machine.” So far the sign has worked.

“Ah, but did William have a time-machine in the context of being a noble Sexlord? As one of my brethren, the dashing highwaymen of time and sex? Because if he didn’t he will never be as cool as me. I am the coolest guinea pig. Everyone loves me. I am not Theo anymore. I am Lexington Hard Biscuit 2000.” His mouth opens a little as he looks at me. He hopes he has me there, though he knows his triumph will be but a fleeting thing, suspended, as if in amber, till the sign he has made falls off the time machine and William  realizes that there was only ever one time-machine and it was his and Theo has been lying. But until that day, he will roam, indolent and brave, full of vigor and sleaze through time and sex itself. THESE ARE THE VOYAGES OF LEXINGTON HARDBISCUIT 2000. Long may he roam. 

Wednesday, February 6, 2013


So Debbie Mc Cune tagged me in this whole blog-hop dealy. You answer some questions and tag some people, like those chain letters that always lead to people getting murdered if they break the chain. Only without the murder. Not that I'm taking the chance. 

What are you working on at the moment?
Three things- a threequel to my first two books, then a collaboration about revenge on boys with my lovely friend Ciara Banks and a sequel to the paranormal thing I finished in November. Hopefully that is not too much to juggle. I like them all, but go through phases of having a favourite. This is probably how I will be when I have children also. 

Where did the idea come from for the book?
My current book, Improper Order (out really soon!) is a sequel, so the idea came from the first book. All I had to do was expand and put in   adventures. I get my ideas from loads of different places. Books I've read that inspire me and make me think, pictures and ideas and things I think about before I go to sleep or in the nap-time bit of yoga. 

What genre does your book fall under?
Teen Fiction, for the novels. Grown-Up for the short stories. Horror for the Nightmare Club children's books. 
Which actors would you choose to be in a film adaptation of your book?
I don't think Prim would make a good film. I think it is too rambly. Maybe a soap opera. I would like William, my beloved pet and the most famous guinea pig in Ireland to play all the roles. 

What is the one sentence synopsis for your book?
Teenage girl has melancholy spiced with rats and joy. 
Will your book be self-published or represented by an agency?
Neither! I don't have an agent, but I have a lovely publisher, Little Island. They make my books happen and sometimes give me cake. 
How long did it take you to write the first draft of the manuscript?
about a year, or a little more...I kind of fix as I go along...
What other books would you compare this to within this genre?
I don't know. That is a hard question. There are so many amazing YA writers out there that I am not going to compare myself to because I would come off wanting. I would love to be as funny as Louise Rennison, as deft and moving as Jenny Downham, or as cool as Sarra Manning. 
Who or what inspired you to write this book?
Siobhán Parkinson. She was an amazing teacher/ mentor/ cheerleader/ editor hybrid for Prim Improper, and Improper Order grew out of Prim Improper because it is a sequel. I don't know if I would have written a book if I hadn't had someone tell me that they thought I could. It seemed like an enormous undertaking, until I did it and then I was all "this is awesome, I want to do more of it" 
What else about the book might pique the reader’s interest?
There is a small robot, a dashing rat, some mild cosplay and millinery. Do you like these things? If not, do not be scared. There are more things in my book than that. There is the rosary and a lot of sitting down, for those of a sedentary persuasion....
So I am tagging Cethan Leahy and Sarah Maria Griffin because they are witty and wise and I want to find out more about them. Consider yourselves tagged, guys. Wait a week, then publish your answers on blog thing and tag others. If you break the chain, all your sorority sisters will get murdered by that guy who lives in the attic and is married to a shoe. For Reals. 

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

A non-exhaustive list of problems with the popular movie-film "Looper"

William has compiled a list of problems with the popular movie-film "Looper" (this is how he refers to Looper. I think he thinks that that is its full title) for your edification. He is qualified to do this because he has a time machine of his own.

A critique of the popular movie-film "Looper", with an emphasis on the inaccurate representation of temporal mechanics exhibited therein.

By William, the guinea pig. 
1. In the popular movie-film "Looper", there are two actors playing one man. In real life, everyone plays themselves. I, for example, play William. This is not a time-travel related problem, but it is a very real problem. If I were a director, (and who is to say that I won't be? I have a time-machine and can do what I like), I would make sure that people were not allowed to play the same person, even if they did have the same mouth. 

2. Also, how does having the same mouth even work? Did they need to draw up a timetable so they could eat dinner and drink the endless fancy coffees of which Hollywood Movie-Film actors are so beloved?

3. I would hate not to have full custody of my own mouth. Luckily, it lives on my face and is loyal to me alone. 

4. But, let us not dilly-dally about the place conjecturing mouth-custodies out of the ether. I am a guinea pig with a time machine. There are only three time machines in the world, and one of them is my time-machine in the future. None are in human hands. To my knowledge, a human has never been able to travel through time successfully. And compared to some, my knowledge is pretty exhaustive. 

5. Another thing about the popular movie-film "Looper" is that it was on a farm for a bit, but I did not see very many vegetables. I was really hoping there would be loads of vegetables because I like to imagine enormous vegetables when I have trouble being happy. Movie-Films are meant to be escapist and fun. This cannot happen if people talking out of borrowed mouths run around shooting things instead of eating vegetables. If I had borrowed someone's mouth, I would use it to eat loads of vegetables. I would probably keep my own mouth on me as well, and use that to eat hay and it would be amazing. My tummy would be the fullest tummy ever and then I would have a nap. It would be the best day ever. 

6. I thought my trip to the cinema would be the best day ever. Guinea pigs so rarely get to see things that you have to pay for. I was really looking forward to the popular movie-film "Looper". Sadly, my hopes were dashed on the altar of not enough vegetables. And unrealistic time travel. 

7. I did get excited for a bit when there was an expensive lady-prostitute. I used to be one and I thought that, since I had a time-machine, that maybe the expensive lady-prostitute in the film would be based on me and would get to go back and forth in time, solving crimes and being friends with people. 

8. How could Bruce Willis, or Joe, as he was called by the people in the film get inside the door of the time machine, when everyone knows full well that the doors on time-machines are really small? You'd have trouble getting a full-sized rabbit in there, much less a popular movie-film actor and notable fine figure of a man? Also, if it were really the future, people would always be coming up to future Joe and being all "Oh my God, you totally look like popular movie-film actor and notable fine figure of a man Bruce Willis". Because they would remember the charismatic fellow whose films they had enjoyed in the past. Riddle me that. 

9. All that gold strapped to future Joe's back would be really heavy and make him tired. I think, if I were carrying a comparable amount of gold in proportion to my weight and height, the last thing I'd want to do when I appeared in the future would be to fight myself and run away. There seemed to be a bit of grass in the field, so I would probably muster the energy to waddle off the blanket and have a bit of a munch on that. Maybe popular movie-film actor and notable fine figure of a man Bruce Willis likes fighting and running as much as I like eating fresh grass? 

10. If that is so, I don't understand popular movie-film actor and notable fine figure of a man Bruce Willis and amn't sure I want to see any more of his movie-films.

11. Past Joe didn't want to commandeer a time-machine for larks and high adventure. Nor did future Joe, for that matter. No-one did. But, in the real world, that is mostly how people come by time-machines. Acquisition fail. 

12. There was a kid, and he was pretty scary because sometimes Deirdre lets kids rub me and they can be very rough. I don't bite them though, because I am a gentle and handsome guinea pig. But sometimes I go to the future expressly to destroy their lives, so in the long run I win. I don't like children. I wish that he had been played by an enormous vegetable. The popular movie-film "Looper" would have been like ten times better then. 

13. Children should be more gentle. In films and in life. 

14. When I was a small guinea pig all vegetables seemed enormous. Life loses some of it's sparkle as you grow and food shrinks. 

15. They weren't wearing driving goggles. You need to wear driving goggles to operate a time-machine. Well, to operate my time machine, anyway. The other time machine is supposed to be some sort of car with a sideways door. I think it is currently under the ownership of a taciturn chinchilla named Leopold. He's all about only using it for good, apparently. Bo-ring. 

16. Kid Blue totally reminded me of Theo. Needy. I decided a long time ago not to tell Theo about my time machine. If you tell him secrets, he thinks that you're his friend. 

17. But we are not talking about Theo (or else you would have stopped reading a long time ago, am I right? I should stop. I'm so bad.) What we are talking about is the popular movie-film "Looper". It is only worth going to see if you do not mind inaccurate time-travel.

18. And a distinct lack of vegetables.

19. I can't think of anymore scathing criticism. 

20. I'm tired. I want some hay. I think it is time for a trip to the future. I hope I don't have to fight some of my past and future selves trying to get to it.

21. To be fair to him, Rian Johnson was kind of bang-on about that aspect of time-travel. 

22. The End. 

Monday, September 17, 2012

Pitcher of you.

William has a new job. No-one has employed him to do it. He just upped and decided one day that he had been too idle for too long. Far too long. He needed some sort of raison d'etre. Some sort of raison d'etre that wasn't handsomeness related. He was thinking about writing his memoirs, but memoirs are so full of words. Then he heard about pitching.
"It's amazing" he exclaimed "You only need like, a sentence or something. And it doesn't even have to be written down. Not if you can get a meeting."
"A meeting with who?"
"Harvey Weinstein, or the closest thing you can find to him. Or anyone with money who wants to use it to make a film."
"Okay. So what happens then?"
"Then I wow them."
He would too, William is very comfortable around big shots. Unlike Theo, who fawns all over them to a disgusting degree or else plays it too much the other way and ends up insulting them in a horrible and still somehow not very creative manner.
"What do you have so far?"
He whipped out a little moleskin and started what can only be described as thumbing through the pages intently. William doesn't have any thumbs. He is just that good.
", I didn't expect to be this nervous. I'm just so invested in these and excited to share them with you"
"It's okay William"
"I know it is. Pretending to be nervous around them is part of the act. It flatters them and makes you more human and relatable"
"But you're not a human"
"It's a turn of phrase?"
I know it is, but I am still a bit suspicious. All this business with pretending to identify with humans and almost having thumbs when he doesn't actually have any thumbs. It's a bit unnerving. William's new job is changing him, moulding him into a sort of facsimile of his former self, something slick and urbane. Kind of how Theo wants to be but isn't. I don't like it at all. I glare at him. He doesn't even notice.
"So. My ideas are in list form, stop me when you get to something you like." He grins widely, exposing tusk-like chops that gleam eerily towards me. Even his teeth seem polished today. Not a bit of hay stuck in them or anything.
"1. It's about a Navan man who emigrates to become an exotic pet farmer in 1950s America...and the woman he couldn't forget.
2. A space-western. About a space-cowboy...and the woman he couldn't forget.
3. A Maharajah in colonial India...and the woman he couldn't forget.
4. An amnesiac...and the woman he couldn't forget.
5. A silent movie director with hidden depths...and the woman he couldn't forget.
6. A drowning sailor...and the woman he couldn't forget.
There will be a lot of flashback in most of these. Obviously."
"Okay so- 7. The headmaster of a public boarding school where future world leaders are moulded...and the woman he couldn't forget.
8. A sentient zepplin...and the woman he couldn't forget
9. A new strain of testicular cancer...and the woman he couldn't forget.
10. A rogue archeologist...and the woman he couldn't forget.
11. A sad zoo-keeper..and the woman he couldn't forget.
12. A violent hurricane...and the woman he couldn't forget."
He lets the moleskine fall from his little paws and stares up at me expectantly.
"I said to stop me when you got to one you liked."
"Don't worry, I will, go on."
"Oh, right. Right so. I will 13. The man who invented the Inneagram...and the woman he couldn't forget"
14. A sort of homeopathic remedy for facial warts..and the woman he couldn't forget.
15. A princess...and the woman he couldn't forget.
16. An erotic scarf...and the woman he couldn't forget.
17. A fictional character...and the woman he couldn't forget.
18. Tom Cruise plays...a popular gameshow host...and the woman he couldn't forget.
19. An off-road vehicle...and the woman he couldn't forget.
20. An inaccurate pronoun...and the woman he couldn't forget.
21. A supermarket loyalty card...and the woman he couldn't forget."
I stare at him, steely.
"Oh, I can keep going. I'll keep going all night if I have to"
I've never seen a bead of sweat on a guinea pig before. It probably shouldn't be gratifying.
"22. An emotionally distant father... and the woman he couldn't forget.
23. An intellectually brilliant monologue...and the woman he couldn't forget.
24. A Dante Gabriel Rossetti postcard...and the woman he couldn't forget.
25. Actual Dante Gabriel Rossetti..and the woman he couldn't forget.
26. An uptight new yorker...and the woman he couldn't forget.
27. A reserved peer of the realm...and the woman he couldn't forget.
28. An outspoken cardiologist...and the woman he couldn't forget.
29. A sort of a useful spoon...and the woman he couldn't forget.
30. A tupperware outlet...and the woman he couldn't forget.
31. Robert Emmet...and the woman he couldn't forget.
32. A sort of magnificent Lion and all the food it eats and how it sometimes wants to be a poet...33. A youthful plague doctor..and..."
"Number 32"
"It's the one. The project dearest to your heart. I would watch that movie flying William. And someday I will, for it will surely be shown on many glorious airplanes"
He breathed a sigh of relief.
"Were you doing that thing where you try to break me down to build me back up again as a sort of version of me with more artistic integrity?"
"I was. yeah."
"Good. For a while there I was actually worried that I wasn't any good at pitching movies. Sometimes self-doubt is the woman I can't forget"
"Never doubt yourself, William. You are the best and handsomest guinea-pig in Ireland."
Theo said something at this point, but we weren't really listening. It probably wasn't about William. I wonder what the woman I can't forget is? It's probably either second hand books or the good surprises you find in the back of the press. But only if you're lucky.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Broody Theo is Creepy Theo.

Theo wants to be a father. He thinks he has earned it.
"I earned this" he squeaks furiously "who are you to deny me this blessing?"
"I am your owner, Theo"
"That's a really bigoted thing to say. You can't own a guinea pig."
"I bought you for fifteen euro and keep you in a cage."
"You disgust me."
"Sometimes I disgust myself. Would you like to have your cheeks scratched?"
"Probably. But I would also like to be a parent."
"Sorry. Not going to happen"
"But I would be really good at it. I'm secretly quite tender."
He IS secretly quite tender. I once caught him weeping at the delicacy of a falling cherry blossom.

"I'd make a really good dad. And my child would love me like William doesn't"
Not very much of that sentence is true. The William not loving him bit is though.
"It would probably take a while for a child to love you, Theo. You are an acquired taste." Like a sort of pungent mustard. Or cheap red wine that is basically nail polish and food colouring but you drink it anyway because you hope that people will think that you are classy and distinguished. With black teeth, like an olden-days geisha.
"I am not an acquired taste. I am a taste that everybody loves all the time. Like fresh hay, or a handful of dandelion leaves. My child will think I am awesome. Because I will tell it to."
"Children don't do everything you tell them to"
"Mine will. Almost instantly, if it doesn't want to feel the back of my hand."
"Your paw."
"My paw. fine, whatever. It will have to do exactly what I say or I will bring the pain."

Theo can't bring as much pain as William, who is a bastion of peevish nips and quivering grudges. That said, he doesn't do too badly. And guinea-piglets are notoriously small.
"You wouldn't hurt your adopted son or daughter"
"I would. But only for their own good. Like super-nanny. If Supernanny bit and terrorised people to get them to behave more suitably."

I once watched an episode of Supernanny in the gym and told Theo about it. He thinks about Supernanny a lot because he would like her to train William to be dead so Theo will get all the food. I tried explaining that that is not how Supernanny works, but Theo lives in a dream-world, full of impossible asides and inconsequential fancies. This is partly because he is a sensitive blossom-weeper, and partly because no-one really talks to him that much. Except the staff of Topman. And that is only because of a series of business transactions mostly conducted by email.
"Your cage is small enough already. The small guinea-pig would be awfully cramped."
"Who said anything about a guinea-pig?"
"Tou did. you said you wanted a child."
"yeah, a child, not a stupid piglet, a small human child. It would live under the cage and bring me things almost constantly. Because I would order it to and your children have to honour you and cater to your every whim. It's in the bible"
"That doesn't sound like you want to be a father, Theo. It sounds like you want a slave."
"Or slaves. Slaves are in the bible too, you know. God is pretty cool with slavery"
"Well, I for one am not. You'll be getting no human children from me, Thelonius Monk the guinea pig"

A selfish fellow. 
He didn't reply, but he has been sitting atop the castle in a very determined manner, and also printing out some forms he refused to show me. I suppose the only way to find out what he is up to is to wait and see. I hope you're able to send adopted children back for being accidentally enslaved by guinea pigs. I'm not sure though. There was nothing about it the website.

Friday, August 24, 2012

A new string to his already teeming bow.

William has acquired a new pastime. Well, not so much a pastime as an identity. "I am a Ripperologist now" he declared, his small tweed hat balancing rather precariously on his head.
"What does a ripperologist do, exactly?"
"Solves the Jack the Ripper case, duh."
"I'm pretty sure.... and this is just a hunch, but it's a well-thought out hunch, that it was Theo"
"Well, he said some things that made me think of the 'dear boss' letter"
"that was discredited"
"Some say so"
"What did he say William?"
"He said that I was not the boss of him"
"Well, you aren't the boss of him"
"I am if I prove he's a murderer"
"I don't think the criminal justice system works that way."
"We'll see"

William is of the opinion that Theo has been going back to 1888 in William's time-machine, which he steals while William is asleep. William has been training himself to sleep with one eye open, but this means he gets really tired from all the concentration and ends up sleeping for way longer than usual. and when he wakes up, his time-machine is back where he left it. And another Victorian sex-worker is dead. William feels a real affinity with sex-workers because he used to be an expensive lady-prostitute once upon a time.

I disapprove of William's small vendetta.
"I really feel that I am the only one who can solve this case."
"Really. I am going to infiltrate the investigation by posing as Fred Abberline's guinea pig for a while. Curious to meet his guinea pig, his colleagues and friends will flock around me and I can observe their behaviour and ask them leading questions. That's by day. By night I am going to pose as a much cheaper lady prostitute than I was before, in order to entice the blaggard. That one might back-fire though."
"Well, My beauty incites a powerful lust in the sort of men who frequent the ladies of the night. They might start throwing money at me in exchange for my favours. I do not want return to the life of a notable doxy."
It is true that William is a very handsome guinea-pig. And he has drawn up some very impressive charts and so on that say things like "Elizabeth Stride....Mary Kelly....Jewish Immigrant or Freemasonic conspiracy? Which one would Theo be more likely to get involved in? Probably the masons, for the opulent robes."

A nice man.
I was just about to go to bed when William waddled out of his time machine, looking despondent. "Any luck?"
"No. I got some of the killer's DNA, but the other policemen wouldn't believe me that there was such a thing as DNA, and they're questioning whether Mr. Aberrline was right to let a guinea-pig on the force at all."
"Sounds tough"
"It IS tough. Henry Moore called me a bad bobby. And then Mr. Aberrline, he says to call him Frank but I always call him Mr. out of respect, told him that he would give him such a thrashing if he ever spoke unkindly to a guinea-pig in his presence ever again."
"That was nice of him"
"He's a pretty nice dude."
"I can see that."
"I really want to catch Theo. It's gone beyond a joke at this stage. People are getting hurt." William stage whispered this last part, because he didn't want Theo to catch on that he was after him. But he did want Theo to know that we were talking about him, because he loves making Theo feel insecure.


"I might get a book deal out of this. Imagine! And, if it sold well, which- how could it not if I manage to prove that Jack the ripper was a guinea pig- I might get called in to solve other cases! I really like being a victorian detective. I know loads of stuff that they don't and people find me very easy to talk to, because guinea-pigs are prey animals and they feel a bit like prey animals themselves, what with "Leather Apron" going around the place."
"Leather Apron?"
"That's one of the names they have for him. It isn't as catchy as Jack the Ripper, but I like it better, because (significant pause) a leather apron is precisely the kind of thing that Theo would order off the Topman website."
He is not wrong.


William returns home in a haze of dejection. "I'm quitting the force. Scotland yard will just have to do without me from now on."
"It's too much. I cannot bear all this nonsense. People posting people bits of kidney. Attacking women the way I do my bedding when I want to get comfy."
William often nibbbles his bedding quite ferociously in order to make nests to settle into.
"It's enough to make you sick. And Victorians are so prudish. They make me wear a small greatcoat so as to not offend people with my splendid nudity"
"I'm not surprised."
"Well, you could have warned me about it. I'm sick of Victorian London. they'll sell you arsenic over the counter like it ain't no thing but you can't get decent pre-washed vegetables there for love nor money"
"It's not that hard to wash a vegetable, William"
"It is when you have tiny little paws" he waggles them in front of me in an ecstasy of self-pity.
"None of the other Bobbies have to get their veggies washed for them. And they don't really eat many vegetables, even though they should. Vegetables are awesome. Especially the dark green leaves that grow out of broccoli stalks....AND they found out that I was pretending to be a Lady of the evening and laughed at me about it. But when Mr. Abberline found out, he called me a disgrace to him and to the police force. He said he didn't want me to be his guinea-pig anymore. He said I was a shameless hussy."
William is very upset by this because he had a great deal of respect for Fred Abberline.
Mr. Abberline disapproves of hussies.
"That's not very feminist of him."
"I know, right? Why can't a manly guinea-pig engage in feminine pursuits every now and again? It gets even worse than that. I found out who did it!"
"But that's fantastic news, you should be proud."
"Whatever. I don't even care anymore. "
"Who was it?"
"Just some dude"
"Tell me more"
"He's like this big victorian dude. But I don't even care. I'm over it"
"Aren't you going to go back and tell the detectives about it?"
Lettuce is tasty.
"Nah. They might start laughing at me again. And what's even the point of solving the Jack the Ripper case if it's not going to get Theo into trouble?"
"Er...saving the lives of some women? Or at least bringing their killer to justice?"
He was looking at some ice-berg lettuce on the counter.
"Oh, I'm sorry. Did you say something?"

Theo is very jealous of William's greatcoat.
"Where did you get it?"
"It's vintage"
Theo looks crestfallen. He really likes to be the most fashionable one in the cage. I wash a bit of lettuce and dangle it through the roof of their cage to try and encourage them to stand up on their hind-legs for it, like small performing seals. Theo is too sad to be greedy. William gets all the lettuce. Also, he is thinking of joining the freemasons. Not a complete loss, then. Every cloud.
A happy ending for selfishWilliam.

Friday, August 3, 2012

Dawn of Passion

I am reading a book worthy of sharing with you all. It is called Dawn of passion and it is about sexy archeologists in sexy Egypt. (Sexy Egypt is pretty much the same as regular Egypt. Only Sexy.)

The tagline is : :A potent Magnetism drew her to Egypt." But that's not the full story. She actually went on a plane. To deliver a special camera that a texan billionaire donated. The billionaire came with her. He is handsy and obnoxious and will probably be important later on.

She is Robyn, the clever daughter of a respected archeologist. He loved Egypt, so he named her Sesha Neheru, which means 'small bird among flowers'. She is called Robyn because a Robin is a small bird. She has brown hair and feels pretty non-descript, even though she knows a lot about archeology and is clever. People think she will be and old maid, and say things along the lines of "you'll be working with Egypt's Sexiest Archeologist, but we don't have to worry about you falling in love with him like EVERY OTHER WOMAN HE HAS EVER MET EVER. Because you are so sensible and brown haired and non-descript" If she is so non-descript, why are you spending so much time describing her, Catherine Kay? Riddle me that.

She has been recently dumped by a callous paleontologist called John Porter. In my head, John Porter will be played by David Schwimmer. He was drawn away by the "practised female force" of another woman, who is probably really descript.

Oh, also the Texan Billionaire's name is Huntley Saunders. And he just said: "I've heard that Egyptian men go for mousy blondes who carry a little extra poundage." Way to spoiler Dawn of Passion on me, Huntley. Gah. Also a chilling insight into what Texan Billionaire's talk about in their spare time. 

Robyn is "tired to death of being reminded of her generous mouth" #whitegirlproblems

There is a stocky open faced lad named Tom Perkins. He has called her "little one" so he will end up fancying her at some point. However, he is a stocky, open-faced lad and not a dangerously attractive to American Women archeologist, so it probably won't work out.

‎"The Man's handsomeness was extraordinary." But Dr. Sayed al-Rashad also has an angular grace, like a sort of sex-pharoh from Sex-Egypt of yore. He has fiery eyes, like Lapis Lazuli and Robyn keeps getting distracted while they're talking because of their intensity.

He is angry because she is an American woman who is late for their first meeting. He glares at her and orders her to eat her breakfast in the car by herself. She isn't happy about it, but what did she expect from someone with THE MOST INTENSE EYES THAT EVER LIVED ON A FACE?

Robyn is clever. She narrows her eyes and thinks "I know what you are up to, you build women up with your hotness and eyes and then you knock them down with your meanness and moods. Well, here's one woman you are not going to do that to." Negging will not work on Robyn, Sayed the sexiest archeologist in all of Sexy Egypt. Your move.

Also, Robyn is a bit psychic. She has "true dreams" sometimes when she touches artifacts or is in historical places. She has a psychic nap at the site of the dig and when she wakes up an excited old woman comes up and reads her sand. To read someone's sand, you get them to pick up a fistful of sand and then drop it. "Danger is coming!" says the sand. "Also you will have to make a choice between two roads and I'd chose the happy one if I were you because the other road is much less happy than the happy road". the sand-reader and her sand are both wise. But will Robyn heed their vague advice?

Dr. Sayed has just apologised and brought her a bag of biscuits. Also, he kisses her hand and she blushes. They don't tell us what kind of biscuits though. I am going mad wondering. 

THEN, Sayed was like: "Time for an arabic lesson- my name is Sayed, not Dr. al-Rashad, which is what my enemies call me. " He is SO smooth. I can see why all the ladies do be after him. 
This is the way Sayed speaks: " The wind is gathering in the desert. I can feel it, like electricity in my nerves. May Allah grant us time." He also feeds her crusty bread rolls that they dip in dishes of taheena. Robyn finds herself forgetting "that he was a dangerous man who took women lightly". Be careful, Robyn! Don't let him lure you into exchanging your heart for delicious local delicacies!

This is a close up of the cover. I am worried there is blood on Robyn's shirt but impressed by Sayed's dashing little scarf. The backwards writing says "She was blessed and cursed by their tormenting love". The Sphinx is in the background, being annoyed that his beard is still in the British Museum. If he had a beard, surely Robyn would fall for him instead of a puny human male. Give it back, you guys. He needs it to woo. 

He's all: "It's such a relief that you know nothing about archeology" and she is about to correct him, but he keeps on talking about what a relief it is and how annoying it was when other women pretended to know stuff about archeology to impress him but really they didn't, so after a while she stops trying to interrupt him and just lets him wibble on about it while she looks at his "firm amber skin" and they sip creamy strawberry-based local desserts.

They're about to part ways and then Sayed says this: " your lips look as if they had not been kissed with a real passion...a pity" Then he skips off into the Sexy Egyptian dusk, leaving Robyn and her generous lips confused and trembling.

There is a photographer named Sandi, who is described as "braless and good-humoured". I instantly love her.

So Robyn finds out from Rafica, an egyptian working on the dig, that, among other things, Sayed is a sheikh. A Sheikh! Robyn is even more intrigued by him than she was before. He is so much more than the sexiest archeologist in Egypt. 

Rafica is being arranged married to an evil guy. We know he is evil because his name is Mustafa and she doesn't fancy him. Robyn is very sorry for Rafica and asks Tom, the open-faced fellow from before, to help broach the matter with Sayed. Sandi the braless photographer fancies Tom by the way. But he won't give her the time of the day because she wears bright colours and is always going on dates with men.

Dr. Sayed the secret Sheikh has a rival Archeologist. Hassan Tarsi. He is not as sexy as Dr. Sayed and puts his hands all over the papyrus in a careless manner. Robyn gets a bad vibe from him. His eyes are dark and cruel, not blue pools of sexual promise.

Things go quite nicely with Dr. Sayed for a while. He digs up an old perfume bottle and gives it to her and they go on an impromptu trip together to see some sights. He tells her about how Muslim women are more modest than western women, way modester, like maybe six times more modest is what he's saying. Also how the restrictions imposed by society are only there to make it harder for them to "play the fool". Robyn listens, as if all this makes a lick of sense. Such is the potency of Sayed, secret Sheikh and sexiest archeologist in ALL OF SEXY EGYPT! 

Remember Huntley Saunders, the texan billionaire? He has been going around annoying everyone and Dr. Sayed is annoyed and busy. Robyn is sad, and angry at herself. She was a fool to think that someone like him could be interested in someone like her, who is so non-descript! A fool!

Also, Huntley Saunders wants her to call him Uncle Huntley. I want her to call him Uncle Huntley, Sex Predator. Because that is his real name. He is played by The Rich Texan from the Simpsons, by the by. 

Uncle Huntley Sex Predator got a total smackdown from Robyn, where she basically told him to stop annoying people and telling the press about the dig or she'd hold a press conference where she told the media what an embarrassment he is to everyone. He did not like that and called her a "little spitfire". Then he gave her a big sloppy kiss on the mouth, with a view to some Sex Predation. 

Dr. Sayed walked in, just as they were kissing. He sent Uncle Huntley, SP on his way, and said a curt goodnight. But then, room service sent her surprise soup! Because he was worried she'd be hungry! I like that he woos her with foodstuffs, but am worried that he is establishing a pattern of being weird and compensating for it with food, which will only work for so long before she realises she can buy food in shops and doesn't need to put up with his nonsense anymore. 

One of the things that is important to know about Dr. Sayed’s dig is that he is hoping to uncover some scrolls from the library of Alexandria. That is why the special camera donated by Huntley Saunders, Sex Predator is so important. Huntley has loads of money so they still have to be nice to him even though he is the worst.

Also, Tom and Sandi the braless photographer and best thing about Dawn of Passion are still hemming and hawing over whether or not they love each other (they do). Sandi told Tom she loved him, but he was all “how can I believe you? You have dated loads of men, and will obviously toy with my affections and break my open-faced, trustworthy, all-american heart.” Get over yourself, Tom. Sandy is awesome and will enable you to become awesome by association.

Robyn is getting up early to go on a trip with Sayed. Huntley and Hassan, the rival archeologist have been making trouble for him at the university and Robyn needs to help him sort it. He calls her “a jewel beyond price” and she is happy out.

On the way there they tell each other stuff about their childhoods and she quotes some of the Rubaiyat at him. Because she is the daughter of a famous Egyptologist and can just quote the Rubaiyat from memory, like a boss. I am really warming to Robyn. She always brings a book in her handbag when she’s going places and is in a near constant state of insecurity.

And then she does something like this. Whispering “I can’t fall in love; it’s impossible!” to a fecking tree because she doesn’t want to fall in love with Sayed. Newsflash: he is the sexiest archeologist in all of Sexy Egypt, Robyn. You will not be able to help yourself. Did you not get the memo?

He kisses her! His newly shaved beard rasps excitingly against her tender skin!

Then they go on a bit of a drive and argue about Rafica’s arranged marriage. Apparently I was wrong to judge Mustafa based on his name and the fact that Rafica doesn’t fancy him. He’s a decent guy, even if he is not her true love. Rafica’s true love’s name is Karim, fyi.

Sayed thinks that Robyn is wrong to want to meddle in Egyptian people business. He asks her: “Do you understand what being a Sheikh is?” in amnimpassioned manner. Then he gets all huffy because she didn’t back down and go “ being a Sheikh means you are always right about things.” Stupid Sayed.

Sayed thinks western women are too free with their affections. They are “free to be appraised and handled by any number of men!” Robyn argues with him and gets really frustrated by his attitude. All the more because it doesn’t stop her fancying him even a little bit. She wants to “break his wall of masculine security”. Possibly with her vagina.

Robyn storms into the important office of important archeological import and promptly nakes a kick-ass speech that saves Sayed from the machinations of Huntley Saunders, Sex Predator and Hassan Tarsi, unscrupulous rival archeologist. I don’t think it breaks his wall of masculine security, but he’s pretty grateful to her for it. 

I’m completely enjoying this book, by the by. I thought from the cover it would be more trashy. It is trashy, but there’s something chaste and old-fashioned and charming about it that makes me fonder of them all than I was of the parade of DRAMATIC scuts in Ecstasy’s Masquerade. Still naming my firstborn Cord Chandler though.

Sayed leaves her to wander about the museum of antiquities while he attends to some business, presumably of a Sexy Archeological nature. Also he has started calling her  “small bird” because that is what her name means in Arabic.

She is wearing a peach dress with loads of ruffles around the neck and sleeves to dinner with Sayed and his mum, Daphne Al-Rashad. Sayed wears a “peacock-blue tie over a heavy silk suit”. Apparently they both look great. I am not convinced.

“….the pungent odors of the East flowed over them” Catherine Kay really transports us to an exotic wonderland of romance and adventure. I cannot wait to see beautiful, smelly Egypt for myself one day.

Madame Al-Rashad is nice, but occasionally she comes out with this sort of thing: “ He [Sayed] is the fruit of the splendor of love”.  Gah. What do you even say to something like that?

Robyn likes Daphne, despite (because of?) the over-share. They look at old manuscripts and Robyn confides that she isn’t “an exciting beauty. I’m just an average, pleasant girl…”. Daphne takes the bait and is all “Well, I think you’re only gorgeous.” Only Daphne says it in a different way. Because she is classy and cultured and wears a pink peignoir to bed, like a sort of a fancy woman.

Sayed is asking her if she’s “an innocent” again. He seems kind of obsessed with how slutty western women must be. Robyn says “she is not obliged to follow society’s permissiveness.”, which I think is a roundabout way of saying she’s a virgin? I think the book would be more interesting if she had slept with her old boyfriend, David Schwimmer. Because then we would see if true love meant sometimes having to get over yourself if you are a sexy archeologist.

They go for a lovely dinner and he pretty much has the same conversation all over again.
Sayed: “ you believe that a woman can mingle with men freely? Without the protections of society in case she should fall prey to the persuasions of an experienced man?”
Robyn: “Yes Sayed, I do believe that. You massive tool. This novel is over.
Except she just argues with him a little bit, weakly. Can’t spell Egypt’s Sexiest Archeologist without Sexist. Is Sexistist a word? Probably not. But if it were, it would be applicable to Sayed.

He takes her out to the desert and makes out with her.  It’s pretty good for a bit “The wonder of touching him set off waves of delight that almost deadened her”. But then, during a bit of “excruciatingly pleasurable play”, he’s all “Psyche! You would have TOTALLY done it with me there, wouldn’t you? Women need men to protect them from themselves. I’m right, you’re wrong. Ha!”
Only he doesn’t say it like that. He says it like this: “’so much for your talk of purity’ he hissed with a fury that was tangible ‘ you know quite well what will arouse a man and would have gone with me as far as I desired. What a disappointment you are!’ He ground his teeth and gave her a sharp shake” His way is much worse. And then he tells her to “Cover herself!”, like she was a dirty flasher on the prom instead of a lovely lady who had just done lovely lady sex things with him. I hate Sayed. He is not the Sexiest Archeologist in all of Sexy Egypt anymore. Not to me, at any rate.

Robyn is sad and angry and just wants a hug. She sobs all the way home in the car beside him and he doesn’t comfort her at all , just gives off “waves of masculine virility” and disapproval. Sayed, you are dead to me. I am rooting for a last minute guest appearance by David Schwimmer.

Robyn stands up to him. She goes on a big rant about how he tried to take advantage of her and then made her feel all used and how she knows “Muslim men want their women to be virgins” but that shit he pulled? Not okay. He kind of takes it on board, but in a way where it’s obvious he still thinks he’s in the right. 

There are vandals doing things at the dig! Presumably they are vandalizing it. Everyone is very worried. There is a huge black market for bits of old manuscripts and unscrupulous thieves are everywhere. I bet Huntley Saunders, Sex Predator and Hassan Tarsi, Rival Archeologist have something to do with this. They have been very quiet recently, since Sayed turned into a horrible man altogether and broke Robyn’s non-descript heart into a thousand sparkling pieces.

Aziza Atef, a widow who looks like something out of vogue, just confronted Robyn and laid claim to Sayed. It was all done in a very undercurrenty way, with her being mad polite and Robyn being polite back and they both of them sizing each other up and saying passive aggressive things. Robyn thinks in italics for a bit after the encounter: ‘ He’s all yours Madame X; maybe you are devious enough to understand his labyrinthine self- I certainly am not’ Good on you Robyn, more of this way of thinking please.

Robyn goes to buy a galabia and walks into a horror movie of people pulling at her clothes, trying to drag her into their shops and down alleyways. She basically is having a panic attack, when Sayed comes along and is all: “Get over yourself, they were just trying to sell you dresses”. He takes her for tea and then to a shop. She tries on a black galabia and a golden one. But, even though she looks totally hot in the golden one, like a sort of classy sex-lion, she only buys the black one. Because she is non-descript. What need has she of gilded dresses and moonlight kisses? These things are not for her. She will only wear black from now on and walk around Egypt sadly, like a sort of a sentient Forever Alone meme.

Oh no! Papyri have been stolen from the site! Sayed is angry, and is kind of accusing Robyn of taking stuff, even though the only scroll she is interested in, “The scroll of the Blue-Eyed God”, is still there. In Sayed’s pants. Sorry, couldn’t resist. The scroll of the blue-eyed God is an actual thing. It’s pretty much about Past Sayed and Past Robyn, hooking up and stuff. In the past.

Robyn is going to sit beside Sayed at a fancy banquet. She has decided to remain “silent as a Sphinx”. Which is a bit like “crazy like a fox” only more mysterious. I hope she spouts riddles at him. That’d soften his sexy cough.

Sandi and Tom are having DRAMA. So are Rafica and Karim. And so is Robyn, because Sex Widow has been invited to the banquet. Instead of going up to her and being all “who invited you to this party, Sex Widow?” she convinces herself that Sayed is now all about the Sex Widow and feels bad.

So, after the banquet, Sayed calls Robyn and says this “I’m sorry if I upset you in some way.” Which is no kind of apology at all because he clearly doesn’t see how leading her on, being cruel to her, shaking her, accusing her of theft in the workplace and lording a Sex Widow over her at a work-do to top it all off are things that need apologising for. He might be the sexiest archeologist in all of Sexy Egypt, but he is not very good at being a decent human being.

Robyn goes to the dig to track down the thief, in a fit of “I’ll show him”. There is a big sandstorm coming and she saves all the artifacts from getting blown away and damaged. Sayed arrives and is angry with her for being “reckless”. Reckless like a Sphinx.

Robyn runs off in a strop, into the sandstorm. She shelters beside a passing donkey. Sayed comes to find her and he’s all “My treasure” and “If anything had happened to you.!” The Bedouin reveal that it was HS,SP and HT, RA doing the vandalism and stealing. They wanted to teach Sayed a lesson, but sadly it is very difficult to teach Sayed anything so now they are in big trouble instead.

So, Robyn finds out that the scrolls they have found ARE from the library of Alexandria. Exciting! She also finds out that Sayed is probably going to marry the Sex Widow from some eavesdropping she does in the course of her travels. She is sad. She is going to go back home and not think about him ever again. She is done with Sexy Egypt and it’s constant chicanery.

But when she gets back to her hotel room, the golden dress of wonder is there. And a note from Sayed that says “Wear this tonight”. She does, and goes to the party and feels sad and confused and uncertain of where to go next. She shows Sayed the proof about the scrolls and he’s mad happy and exited. Then he gives a speech, and at the end of the speech, he’s all “[Robyn is] the woman I am going to marry”. Gasp!

Robyn is delighted by this, because clearly Sayed is a stable and caring individual, well capable of loving and being loved in return. No matter what he has done in the past, it will be different from now on. He made a speech, dammit. He made a speech.

Rafica gets to be with the man she loves and so does Sandi, the braless photographer and person who this book should have been all about. Robyn and Sayed’s work here is done so they go off to the desert and do it in the sand. She’s not a whore for liking sex anymore. Because she is engaged and that makes it alright to get up to mischief. But only monogamous, loving, mutually pleasurable mischief at her fiancée’s convenience, mind.

As the sun rises, Robyn thinks about just having become a proper woman, the kind that isn’t a virgin anymore. And, lo, the italics return: “And she felt on her lips the mysterious smile of the Goddess. Each of us is Isis, she thought musingly the mother, the wife and the beloved. The warm shafts of the slanting sun touched her head like a blessing from the ancient gods.” An ancient, special, holy high-five from Ra himself, no doubt. Blergh. I can’t even process this. And then, Dawn of Passion ends. At Dawn. Post-passion. The two of them holding hands and being in love. Sexy Egypt has again woven a spell of intrigue and possession, passion and Sexy Archeology. Nobody will ever, ever call Robyn non-descript ever again. 
How it should have ended:

I left Dawn of Passion in Edinburgh airport, hopefully some wide-eyed young archeologist on her way to Egypt will pick it up and learn from Robyn's mistakes....