I was going to write up my notes on Geoff Troughton’s address to the Presbyterian Research Network: The Demon Drink and the Christian: Yesterday and Today. The Archivist has suggested that I put this up on the Presbyterian Research blog which has been inactive.  Instead I will give you a fragment that I wrote for the Writing Different Worlds workshop a couple of months ago.  I haven’t done anything further with it.  I’m coming to like the direction I think it is going in.

The morning sun was shining through the curtains.  They did not close completely, a line of light shone between the curtains into the still dark of the room and across the bed.  On a fine warm morning the boy enjoyed the luxury of being under blankets while still not fully awake.  He emerged into consciousness at his own leisure.

It was not to last.  A voice broke through his reverie.  “Johnny! Johnny!” A women entered the room and she was pulling the drapes open. The sunlit sky illumined the room.  The last snatches of sleep were expelled.  The boy protested, snuggling deeper into the blankets.

Still it was too late.  She pulled the blankets back.  “Johnny, it’s time to get up. The porridge is nearly ready, and I need you to go down to Mr Potipher’s.  There’s no milk.”

Johnny groaned and tired to pull the covers back over him.  His mother was firmer.  “None of that,” she said.  “There’s work to be done.  Get up and get dressed.  Here’s some money.”  She left a handful of coins on the drawers.  Now she was wasting no time pulling him out of the bed.

“But mum!” he wailed.

“No nonsense,” she said sternly.  “Everyone is else is up.  Now get up and go.”

He was up and pulling on clothing.  Everyone else was already out of the house, probably down the section.  He had time to give himself a quick wash in the bathroom and was out of the house.

They lived on the edge of town.  North of most of the shops, but at least out of the shadow of the towers.  Mr Potipher’s shop was on the very edge of the inner district.  It was a stone building and had always been there.