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Bertram Bear and the Rivals

New neighbours come to live in Coombes Corner with cats that have very bad attitudes namely, Pinch and Punch. Those are the rivals as far as the animals are concerned....


The Sussex Newspaper’s Book Of The Year 2019 has been awarded to Gregory's first book aimed at children - The Adventures of Bertram Bear

Gregory writes: "I was completely overwhelmed that I had won an accolade..."

Gregory Gower

Gregory Gower was born in 1935 so growing up and schooling were mixed with a world in turmoil. Most persons have the luxury of not experiencing bombs being dropped on them.......

The Adventures of Bertram Bear

What was so special about Bertram Bear?

When Brian goes to sleep, Bertram and his friends come to life and their adventures begin!

With the help of his animal friends, Bertram must save the day without being seen by Brian and his family......

A Joyride to Murder & The Steal plus 12 Short Stories

Detective Inspector Wragg of New Scotland Yard – just transferred up from the county of Kent had been thrown into the thick of things that seemed to be happening in London. His po-face and wry sense of humour were his greatest assets.....

Mistaken Identity and Short Stories

Roland James, our hero, recently bereaved who dominates the first part of the story and is mistaken for someone else, but soon becomes a target for another reason.........

(Click "Read More" for a complete short story from the book: The Computer)

I Remember it Well.... and other short stories

A selection of stories of murder, mystery, adventure, fantasy, drama and farce...

A Touch of Heaven.... and other short stories

Short stories from the master story teller Gregory Gower's. From "A Touch of Heaven" to the wonderfully sublime "Me and My Shadow", these stories of the magical wonders of life will leave you spellbound....

Christmas is Coming.... stories and sketches

Festive tales of mystery, murder and suspense from the master story teller....

Coming Soon to a Page Near You

Hopefully more books will be published in the coming months...

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Christmas is Coming, Stories and Sketches

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Felicity The Fairy (Complete Story)

Felicity unfolded her silk-like wings and gave a quick flutter and stretched herself. Being entombed in a box for eleven months of the year was not her idea of fun. She wanted to enjoy the freedom that other fairies seemed to have. She had glimpsed the outside world from the top of the Christmas tree through the snow etched windows, not realizing that beyond that window lurked danger. Her silhouette grew against the wall as the flames from the fire danced higher and higher sending out its warm message. Felicity thought that it was okay when she was first assigned to this family, but after twenty years of the same routine, it was becoming a bit of a bore.

Felicity was present when Tom, who was born on the 20th of December 1919 came home on Christmas day to be shown to the world and the Robinson family. It was a special Christmas that year.

Felicity remembered the first time she had been assigned to the Robinson Family for they started their Christmas half way through November and didn’t finish until twelfth night in January. It was a long time out of her box and it was enjoyable to have so much freedom. It wasn’t so good when she was packed away in the box then into another bag of some sort. She felt she was being carried and then she heard the clang of something that terrified her, until of course she got used to the noise and she realized each year she was being placed on a higher level.

The first two years she used to lay dormant and behaved herself until the appointed time when she was unwrapped to be placed in her exalted position on the Christmas tree. She was festooned with coloured beads and pretty twinkling lights and it was fun to watch the bright eyes of wonderment as each present was opened, especially by the little boy.

As each year passed Felicity noted that the boy got bigger and bigger. The surprises were not as wonderful to him as they used to be, and she was becoming worried that he was also getting away from the true meaning of the celebration. Then the following year Felicity’s fears had been justified, he was no longer there, the year was 1939.

There seemed to be sadness in the house. Christmas in the Robinson’s house had been cancelled and Felicity had to make do by herself in the dark. After a long struggle of levering the lid off the box and trying to climb something that flopped all over the place she managed to scramble out of a bag. Being small she was able to crawl towards the eaves and look out. The wind was so strong it almost blew her back to the centre of the roof and she had to hold on tightly to a piece of piping jutting out. After a while the wind abated and she dared herself to climb out, but first had to push up a slate and with the aid of a piece of wood, managed to prop up the slate and crawl out into a curved channel. She sat precariously on the edge of the channel with her legs dangling over the side and viewed the white landscape. She felt cold and was just about to go back into the warmth of the place under the roof when a great pile of snow slid down and carried her over the edge onto the ground. She lay there unable to move because of the weight of snow. It was dusk when Felicity was able to escape from her ice cold prison as some of the snow had melted before a coldness crept back and everything would freeze again.

She had to find somewhere warm. As much as she liked looking up into a cloudless sky seeing all those stars twinkling, it was not going to be pleasant as she realized that her sparse dress would not keep out the cold or spare her blushes.

Near the French Windows was a small box where they kept the coal and Felicity climbed into it and was about to lay down when the object she had climbed over shot up in the air and a big shovel came in and picked up pieces of coal and put into a bucket; this happened three times. Felicity knew not to be picked up because the coal was going to be placed in a fire.

Unfortunately what with all the disturbance it became very dusty and Felicity felt very dirty. She climbed out of the coal building and came face to face with Ginger the family cat. She fainted. Ginger began to lick Felicity, she woke up and Ginger said,

‘You don’t taste very nice!’

‘I know.’ she said, I’ve been in there, I thought it would be warmer.’ She pointed to the coal place.

‘You would have been had you ridden on the shovel.’

‘I know about that.’

‘What are you doing out here?’

‘I didn’t means to be out, only I was sitting up there when all this snow came sliding down the roof and knocked me off.’

Ginger looked up at the roof. ‘It’s a long way up.’

‘Yes I know.’ said Felicity, It’s a long way down too.’

Ginger looked up again at the roof. ‘I’ve always wanted to go up there, but I can’t jump high enough.’

‘I need help. Can you get me get back into the house?’

‘Of course, just climb up on my back and hold my fur tight.’

Felicity climbed onto Ginger’s back.

Ginger scaled a wooden fence and it was so narrow on the top edge, it was a wonder he could balance himself. He turned and placing his back feet up close to his front feet he lurched himself forward through an open window. Felicity hung on for dear life as his paws thudded on a rickety stool and then onto a stone floor.

‘Don’t get off yet!’ said Ginger ‘We’re not there yet, I’ve got to climb that old bookcase and through another hole into the kitchen, then you’re on your own.’

Ginger half climbed, half scrambled and as he was going up he was heard to say ‘I’m getting too old for all this climbing about.’ Felicity was frightened and was glad when Ginger landed safely on a small rug. At that point Felicity fell off Ginger’s back and Ginger was licking her trying to wake her up. Mrs. Robinson was in the Kitchen getting the hot water bottles ready for the beds. She said to Ginger, ‘What have you got there Ginger?’ She bent down and picked up Felicity and said, ‘How did that get there?’ and brushing the coal dust and dirt from Felicity’s face she walked into the living room and said, ‘Look what Ginger found!’ Mrs. Robinson placed Felicity on the mantelpiece.

* * * * *

Felicity was warm all night long. Her wings were still dirty so she flapped them up and down and the dust cascaded down onto Ginger’s back as he lay sleeping on his cushion. Felicity sat down quickly as Mr. Robinson came into the room. It was quite early in the morning as he was a coal miner and was off to work. A pot of porridge had been simmering on the stove all night and Mr. Robinson ladled out three scoops and placed it in his bowl. He sat staring at the mantelpiece as he ate his porridge. Having finished he yelled upstairs saying goodbye to Mrs. Robinson and picking up his flask and a package of sandwiches went out of the house.

Felicity wondered what Mr. Robinson was staring at, surely not at her, she was only a wooden doll with a frilly dress on and with wings. She got up and walked along the shelf and leaning against the wall was this piece of paper and she read the message “The Ministry of War. We regret to inform you that your son Tom Robinson is missing in action.”

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Felicity knew the truth about what had happened to the little boy she used to know and how he grew up over the years and that he had not strayed from the true meaning of Christmas, but by chance some cruel act had deprived him of his life, maybe. Yes! Felicity was made of wood, but she had faith. It was later that morning Mrs. Robinson bathed Felicity with warm water and placed her in a nice new box and put her back on the mantelpiece. ‘You can stay there till next Christmas.’

* * * * *

The following Christmas, there was the tree with Felicity on top and more decorations than usual were festooned around the room. Good news had come to the Robinson family, their son had been found, severely wounded but safe. He would be coming home. The war was over for him, he would be in a wheelchair for some time and it was hoped he would walk again one day.

Felicity was lovingly placed in soft white tissue in a box with a cut out square and kept on the mantelpiece for the next Christmas celebrations.

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