Richard Wright

author of strange, dark fictions


That Tricky Third Date

October 23, 2014 by Richard Wright in Journal, Writing

Iris Wildthyme Of Mars

Third dates are awkward, right? You know you’re further along than before, and you’re maybe starting to get comfortable with each other, but you still don’t know quite where the boundaries are yet. Am I right?

That’s been my experience of Iris Wildthyme, anyway.

irisabroadMy first date with the transtemporal adventuress took place in New Delhi, after we were generously introduced by Paul Magrs and Stuart Douglas. We were both quite new to the city, eager to explore, and ready to peel back a few of its layers. There might have been gin involved. There usually is when Iris Wildthyme blows into town. There were definitely zombies. And a panda called Panda, and possibly a city that thought it was a tramp that might have believed it was a story. Something like that, anyway. You’d have to go and check it out for yourself.

What I do recall is that Iris and I seemed to get on. Don’t get me wrong – Iris isn’t a one writer sort of a girl. Even back then she was seeing other scribes. You get used to that with Iris, and I didn’t mind either. We were having too much fun to get all knotted up about that sort of thing.

I missed her when we were done, and when our paths crossed again a year or so later she pulled me out of a modest funk with the sort of style and verve that only a Celestial Omnibus steering time wench of the most most delirious pedigree can offer. I was still in India when she came calling, but Iris doesn’t like to live the same day twice (although she may literally have been forced to on more than one occasion). She took me away from all that, and introduced me to a childhood hero with an eye mask and a flashing blade.

wildthymeinpurpleSecond dates are often first dates writ large. What worked once is expanded on, made bigger and richer as you become more comfortable with each other. There were no zombies second time around, but there were stories about stories, overlapped with other stories, with more stories for pudding. Iris and I like stories. In many ways, we are stories.

She twirled me around, cackled as the gin went down, then dropped me home with a wink and a flourish.

Reports exist of the adventures we had. Bound and printed reports. It shouldn’t be allowed, yet somehow it is.

And now Iris and I have reached our tricky third date. We’ve both changed since last we flirted, though I have to admit her new look is very fetching (as well as slightly taller and differently accented). We obviously can’t repeat the same thing a third time. We took that as far as it was going to go last time. We need something new to repeat. Something a little dangerous. We need a departure. It could make or break us, but that’s just a little bit thrilling in itself. Don’t you think?

You can come along and watch if you like. Your filthy voyeuristic perving just adds spice.

My story is called ‘Doomed’. You can find it in the brand new* and utterly ravishing Iris Wildthyme Of Mars from Obverse Books. You can buy it today as a hardback or ebook.

15424320528_5fb3f7b890_z*A lie. It is only very slightly new. The ebook has been out for weeks, but I have been slow to shout about it. Iris will not be pleased.


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