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Engle Byen

A Place to Call Home


Smashwords Edition, License Notes

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Copyright © 2017 David Goldon

All characters and locales appearing in this work are fictitious. Any resemblance to real persons, living or dead, is purely coincidental. This book or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the author or publisher except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.

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I would like to dedicate, this, my very first story to my partner of seventeen years, Michael Young. He is my advisor, supporter, editor, proof reader and hand holder through my first writing journey. I love you.

I would also like to thank Vicki Williams for the initial push to get me going and the continued support and guidance on this journey.


A heavy mist encased me, limiting the view of my surroundings. I don't feel the cold biting chill that should accompany this dark gloomy winter's day.

I make the same journey often, how often, I don’t know, time is just a word. Something piques my curiosity in this unchanging environment, something appears different.

My eyes scan the area near me and as far into the distance as I can see. I don't notice anything different. In the dead quiet of this place, I hear the crunching of gravel, footsteps. The crunching noise becomes louder and closer.

I see two figures dressed in black, a male and a female walking towards me. Gradually, through the mist, I make out the faces of the approaching couple; it’s mum and dad.

I give them a limp smile which isn’t acknowledged as they stand either side of me.

Standing in between them I wrap my arms around their waists, drawing them in closer to me. In unison, we lower our heads to view the cold grey marble headstone…

Chapter One

It was time for me to go.

I bought a large paper map, opened it up and laid it out on the table. Closing my eyes, I raised my index finger and moved it over the map until I eventually got a strong feeling and put my finger down, bang, on an unusually named town of Engel Byen, and here I am.

Actually, I decided to move to Engel Byen without much thought. My old life was becoming confused. For the first time in my life, I wanted to run away, I wanted to get away. Being a nurse means work is easy to come by and I knew I would find work wherever I ended up moving to.

Just like that, I packed up my old life and moved. Totally on a whim, which was quite uncharacteristic for me. I felt like a magnetic force was dragging me away from my previous existence before something bad happened.

Engel Byen is a coastal town, overrun by tourists in the summer months and as autumn sets in, they all leave and just the locals remain. This town is such a beautiful place to call home. Just about every second house in my court location is empty at the moment as we head into autumn. I live in a lovely, newly renovated Californian bungalow style house.

Being an organised person, all the boxes were quickly unpacked and the few sticks of furniture were neatly arranged in the appropriate rooms. Even though I've only been living in this house six months, I've already accumulated twelve goldfish which were donated a few at a time, from various co-workers, who, rather than flush the sick fish down the toilet, gave them to me. I seem to have a knack for restoring sick animals back to health. Maybe I should've been a vet.

I do love my new position at St Angelina’s hospital. Nursing is a rewarding career and looking after my patients is my top priority. Though the shift work can be a bit of a bummer, especially being new to the area, I’m eager to make some new friends.

I‘ve already met some of my neighbours, they’re a mixed bunch. There’s Gabriella who lives at No. 33, I have some suspicions about her.

There’s the lovely Muriel at No. 24 to my left. Coincidentally, she was a patient of mine and we’ve become close quite quickly, though I think it’s because she found someone (me) to look after her from time to time.

Ralph lives behind me. His yard backs onto mine and we often have a chat over the back fence. I swear I saw him having a peek at me a few days ago, through a hole in the old wooden fence, when I was getting a bit of the last of the autumn sun in the backyard. OK, I did give him a reason to be a peeping Tom; I was only wearing tiny football shorts. I like to keep trim and in shape and I look pretty good in the mirror, even if I do say so myself.

Chapter Two

There was an odd sound coming from outside my bedroom window as I gradually woke from a deep sleep; the sun was just beginning to rise and I heard the sound of crows calling out.

‘Oh bugger, the damn crows are rummaging through my garbage bin,’ I thought. I jumped out of bed, threw on some clothes and headed for the front door. It was deadlocked so I headed to the back door to find the keys, damn where are the keys?

I found them in the lock of the back door. I could still hear the crows calling but they seemed louder like they were on the other side of the back door. I unlocked the back door, threw it open; nope, no crows out there. With keys in hand, I made my way to the front door and walked outside but saw the garbage bin with the lid still closed, not a crow to be seen.

I made my way over to the garbage bin, my feet getting wet with morning dew as I crossed over the pavement. I inspected the lid, it was closed tight, no sign of crows anywhere. Maybe I heard their calls coming from a neighbour’s house?

“Good boy, it’s OK, who’s a good boy, I won’t hurt you,” I said to the big black dog that had suddenly appeared growling at me. I was trying to keep calm and not appear to be nervous even though I was shaking.

Animals and I have some type of affinity, they are never fearful of me nor me of them; they tend to be drawn to me, but not this dog! He just stayed there in front of me growling, kind of transfixed on me. Usually, Rottweilers are pretty scary looking but this one was a mean son of a...

“Cujo, stay, drop!” came a voice from behind me.

‘Cujo, what? Really? You’re kidding me! What a clichéd name for such a vicious dog like this one,’ I thought. ‘Calm down and pull yourself together Michael, situation under control.’

Cujo did exactly as the voice asked. “Sorry about that, mate.”

I turned around and saw the most beautiful looking man I had ever seen. He was about the same height as me, six foot; lean build, thick black hair and a bit of scruff on his chiselled face that would have been about two days in the making.

He walked right up close to me, so close he was invading my personal body space. I was mesmerised by his eyes, they were the most beautiful shade of dark brown; his lips were full and luscious. My heart was pounding fast and my body began shaking, but not out of fear this time, I was totally consumed and enchanted by this guy’s devilish good looks. Wearing a tight black polo top outlining his perfect pectorals and muscled biceps with a perfect amount of dark chest hair exposed around his neckline. If I could describe the perfect man, he was standing right here in front of me. Close. So close. Too close. I welcomed him into my personal space.

Next thing I recall, “You OK, mate? I’ll call an ambulance,” I heard him say as he picked me up off the wet, dew covered grass.

“No, I’m fine, I’m a nurse,” I managed to say as I steadied myself into standing position.

“How long was I out of it?” I enquired.

"About six minutes, I was about to give you mouth to mouth but realised you were breathing." ‘Damn,’ I thought.

“Jacob, nice to meet you, mate. I just moved into the area about six weeks ago, and this guy you have already met, his name is Cujo.”

‘You may be the most handsome man I have ever met but you suck at naming your dog,’ I thought.

“Michael. Likewise. Thanks for picking me up.”

“Cujo, home,” the handsome Jacob shouted at his big butch dog and off Cujo headed. I couldn’t quite see which yard he went into but it must have been close, he disappeared just as fast as he had appeared when he frightened the bejesus out of me.

“I haven’t seen you around, Michael. Are you new to the area?” Jacob asked quizzically.

“No. Well, I’ve been here for about six months, moved from interstate and just felt drawn to come to this area, and here I am. I work at St Angelina’s as a nurse and do shift work so I’m in and out a bit.”

A sly smile came over Jacobs’s handsome face. “I used to come here on holidays with my parents when I was younger; they owned the house that I live in now. They both passed away several years ago. I inherited the holiday house and let it sit empty for a while so now I’ll probably live in it for a bit. I’ll keep an eye out for you, Michael; we should get together and hang out a bit if you’re up for it.” Jacob said in a flirty way.

“Yeah, that will be great,” I said with a stammer. ‘How embarrassing,’ I thought, as I walked back up the three wet steps into my house. I went directly to the bathroom and looked in the mirror, I looked a mess. I had bed hair but at least my bright, ice blue eyes weren’t all crusty and I cut a decent figure in the tight t-shirt and tracky dacks that I threw on to go outside.

I recalled why I went outside in the first place, it was in search of the noisy crows. What is it they call a group of crows, ah yes, a murder.

Chapter Three

“Oh yeah, that’s it, go harder, even harder, I can take it, a bit to the left, a bit more, no, over to the right, almost, yeah, just there.” I gave out a painful sounding moan to my massage therapist.

As you age, I guess your body starts to fall apart; well that’s what’s been happening to me for the past six months. My twenty-nine-year-old shoulders are in constant pain but not enough to keep me from working at St Angelina’s.

“Oh yeah, that’s it, keep working on that spot,” I continued.

“Michael, you really should be having that x-ray I mentioned to you two sessions ago. Those slight lumps are still on your shoulder blades,” said Viktor.

Viktor looks like your typical Swedish backpacker type; young, a stylish quiff of blond hair, blue eyes, tanned and toned. He's in town on a twelve-month working holiday. I've been lucky enough to have him as my in-house masseur at the hospital. He is gorgeous, always flirting with me and that sexy Scandinavian accent melts me to the core. Even though we have only recently met, I feel as though I have known him all my life; there is a strange yet warm familiarity about him.

“Michael, your legs are like tree trunks,” he complimented me.

“That’s because I am 'Sagittarian' Viktor, you know, half man half horse.”

“Oh, I know which half is the horse.” Viktor giggled.

“Are you dating anyone yet, Michael? Because you know I am free and single and ready to mingle,” Viktor said in his gorgeous Scandinavian accent.

“Sorry, Viktor, professional boundaries and all.”

“Happy ending then, Michael?” We burst into hysterical laughter.

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