SP McGiff


I suppose I could start with my birth and work forward, but my death is of far greater interest.

It was bitterly cold that Christmas evening in 1776, and I was celebrating the birth of Our Lord in the certain knowledge that no Christian army would attack on such a holy night. Okay, I’d more to drink than any right thinking sentry ought to have supped, but haven’t I just mentioned it was Christmas, so a little pity I beg of you - that which was in such short supply that far away night.

I should have spotted the approaching rebels and warned my comrades, but I had dozed off. The river looked frozen and who could have guessed that nearly two thousand men could cross unseen, especially with that pompous farmer general at their head. It all happened so fast - in less than an hour our forces lay dead or captured.

Ah, but I was soon to learn that being captured or lying with a sword between one’s ribs was not the worst fate to befall those defeated that moonless night. Worse - far worse was in store for me.

I had killed a strapping Yankee lad who had wielded a sword like it was an arm off a New England windmill, but I was outnumbered and had to surrender my sword to a lad of less than twenty summers. Unfortunately my captors trudged me past the Mashpee shaman we employed as a scout. He lay holding his lifeless son close to his chest. He looked distraught, but on recognising me his eyes hardened into a dead stare. He knew. He knew the surprise attack was my fault.

In one swift action he threw his tomahawk underarm which caught me square in the chest. As I fell to my knees and before he could be dragged away from me he whispered some words of his ancient tongue into my ear. I tipped forward, but all was black before I hit the ground.

I came back to my senses to find it was still dark and I had a most dreadful dry taste in my mouth. I reasoned I must be in hospital with a heavy blanket tucked around me as I struggled to lift my arms. I eventually pushed myself upwards to find myself in the very field of our defeat. Long gone were the chaotic scenes of battle, and as I lifted myself out of my hastily prepared, shallow grave I felt an overwhelming urge to… to… ah, but that’s a different story altogether and I fear I have rambled on and taken up too much of your time dear reader.

What else can I say about myself, such as what interests I have when I’m not consumed with ... Sorry, there I nearly go again. Oh yeah, I also write children’s books.

Email contact... spmcgiffATgmailDOTcom

Where to find SP McGiff online


This member has not published any books.

Smashwords book reviews by SP McGiff

  • A Gruesome Christmas on Dec. 27, 2010

    Well worth the read, although the story could benefit from editorial assistance, as some images didn’t work, while others were over explained. I was also thrown out of the story by poor word choice e.g. decently instead of decency. This story is not without precise and excellent images that make it worth the read, especially where Jeff puts himself into the young boy’s position as he is about to commit his deed. The story itself drew us into a Christmas none of us would hope to experience outside the pages of fiction. We felt sorry for Jeff as his traditional walk once taken with his wife is ruined for ever more.
  • My Operation on Dec. 27, 2010

    Excellent gallows humour! Hopefully the scalpel was as sharp as the drugs were numbing. :) Thanks for the read
  • The Christmas Guest on Dec. 27, 2010

    Wow - a gem of a find. Most interesting, and I would recommend to others to read. An unusual twist on 'Twas the night before Christmas,' - this story read almost as rhythmically at times. My one complaint was that it could not always reach such high standards throughout. A story from an undoubtedly gifted story teller.
  • Well on Dec. 27, 2010

    An interesting story starting off with the description of an overgrown orchard before moving on to more sinister surroundings. However, the story is weakened by excessive descriptions and some poor word choice, such as how 'inspire' is misused. A story with an unexpected twist (which is rare), but needs work.