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Topics - newchinaren

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Sorcery Square / The Blood of Oz
« on: September 25, 2022, 10:13:27 AM »
One I'm working on.  It will become interactive once it reached the point I'm at, so please be patient.

Citizen's corner / Chinaren's Hole. New release! </blatant advertising>
« on: August 04, 2022, 09:28:03 AM »

Now released!  Free download at:

Public Plaza / New on NHB!
« on: March 23, 2021, 10:54:14 AM »

Newly refreshed and released on Neil Hartley Books:


Run - The future 'aint what it used to be.

Public Plaza / The Lord of All
« on: February 18, 2021, 07:19:04 PM »
I have finally finished one off that I've been working on for quite some time.

Introducing...  The Lord of All

Now available from my book site.  Just click here

Public Plaza / Shameless Advertising.
« on: November 08, 2020, 08:50:00 PM »
It's been a while, but finally I've squeezed out a new book.  Now available on my website!

Simply click on the pic.

Public Plaza / Tired of Death now on Webnovel
« on: October 04, 2020, 11:25:14 AM »
One reason I've not been posting stuff lately:

Tired of Death is now contracted to Webnovel!  It is currently (well, on and off) being featured.

All support (in the daily form of votes with Power Stones) welcome and appreciated!

Shorts Station / Dorothy
« on: November 07, 2019, 05:26:36 PM »
Um, not sure how to embed this here, so you can click the link below, or here

Public Plaza / OMFG!!
« on: November 05, 2019, 03:42:31 PM »
Honestly, I consider myself to be failry tech-savvy, what with my pretty bloody comprehensive IT background, although possibly a bit out of date these days.

Even so.

One of my latest projects:  Audio books.  Specifically making one.

I now have a nice little USB microphone, like all the pop stars use (well), and I've managed to find a decent sound editing bit of software, and now I just want to make a video* comprising of about 5 minutes or me reading, but only showing a single picture all the while.

And can I find an app to do it????  Can I frack!!!   :shakefist:

Well, I can, but they all only play for about 5 seconds per image, and as I only want to show one image....

There was one I found,  a website actually, that seemed to work, until I pressed save, and then it wanted money, which is not something I wish to do for this.

So, anyone any ideas?  My laptop is Android, in case that makes a difference.

*The video is not going to be part of the full 'audiobook' experience, but for various reasons I wish to do this as an interim milestone.

Fiction Park / Wlkabout
« on: September 19, 2019, 08:41:22 PM »
Ian hefted his pack and slung it over his shoulder.  Waving at the guy in the pickup as he pulled away, he looked around at his new location.

It was a medium sized city, somewhere in a place he'd never heard of. 

Ian had once seen a cartoon with a man driving a car.  The man had been holding a map labelled 'nowhere', and there was a sign by the road saying 'Now entering the Middle.'

This must have been how he felt.

“Well, fuck it.”  It was hardly the fist strange place he'd ended up. 

Follwing his intuition, he turned around and walked down a nondescript street in the failing light. 

Ian hated being somewhere new when it was dark.  He liked to get his bearings when it was light, then he could find his way around better.

Still, it was what it was. 

Glancing at his watch he saw it was half past seven.  Still plenty of time.

The street he was on was on the outskirts of the town centre, home to all the shops and businesses that aspired to be on the main street, but hadn't quite made it.  Second rate burger joints and charity shops lined the road.  And bars.  And, yes, there it was.  A club.

The 'Rowdy Buck' wasn't busy when he strolled up to it, but there was still a large bald white man with tattoos on his head outside. 

“ID,” the bouncer said, when it became clear Ian was intending to enter.

“These are not the droids you are looking for,” Ian said in way of reply, waving a hand.

The bouncer went blank for a moment, and Ian slid inside.  He'd always been a fan of Star Wars.

The bar wasn't busy yet, but there was still a reasonable smattering of clients.  Mostly middle aged guys on their own, but some younger couples.

He looked around.  There was a pattern to these things, and he was well familiar with it.

Crossing the dance floor, he made his way to the corner of the place, to an unmarked door.  It opened at his touch, and, going through, he found himself in  small but clean office.  It was dominated by a desk that was covered in paperwork.  Behind it sat a large man with an even larger beard.

“Who the fuck are you?”  he began to rise.

“I'm employed here,” Ian said.

The man hesitated a moment.  A strong willed one this chap.  Then he sank back into his chair.  “Oh, yes,” he said.

“I'm Ian, you hired me a week ago, but I had stuff to do, only just arrived.”

“Yeah... yeah sure,” said the man, frowning.

“What's your name?”

“Kevin,” the man answered, still uncertainly.

“Well, Kevin, I need a room.  Where's the best place?”  Ian dumped his backpack down on the floor.

“We have a spare room upstairs, I was saving it for... saving it for...”  Kevin frowned, as if confused.  Not surprisingly.

“You were saving it for me,” Ian said.  “Where is it?”

“Oh, yes.  Sure.”  Kevin pulled out a drawer and, after a moment of fumbling about, pulled out a key on a tarnished ring.  “Here.  Number three.”  He threw the key at Ian, who caught it with his left hand.  “That way.”  He nodded to a door at the back of the office.

“Cool.  See you around.”  Ian picked his bag up again and headed towards the exit. 

“Yeah...”  Kevin shook his head.  Ian did too, he'd have to watch this one.

Still, nothing to worry about for the moment.  He made his way up a rickety flight of steps coated with a carpet that that was apparently held together with semen stains, and found a brown wooden door with a faded 'three' embossed upon it.

Using the key, he opened it to find a surprisingly roomy and clean place beyond. There was even an en-suite bathrooom.

“Top notch,” Ian said, throwing himself onto the bed.  “This will do.”


The club was in full swing, and Ian had hooked his mark.  A fit older guy, probably about fifty.  Grey haired, but surprisingly intelligent and strong willed, he'd stood out the moment he'd walked in. 

It had taken Ian only minutes to hook him.  His new friend was called Ron, and he was the owner of some precious gem business, just passing though.

As they went, this one was good.  He was clean, well educated and paid for everything without Ian having to even suggest it. 

And when it got late, he wasn't adversed to staggering up to Ian's new room for some... extras.

All in all a good night was had by all.  Ian went to sleep as satisfied as he'd been in a while.


Sunlight streaming in woke him. 

“Damn.”  Ian rubbed at his head.  He hated mornings, it was when he was weakest, unsure of himself.

He frowned and looked at his hand.  It was covered in something. 

“What the hell?”

Sitting up he looked around.  The place was trashed. His nice new room was a tip, with most of the furniture matchwood.  The bathroom door was hanging off one hinge.

That wasn't all.  Ian's nice new friend had not been spared.  He was ripped apart.  Pieces of Ron decorated the walls, floor, furniture and Ian.

“What the fu...”

There was a hammering at the door.  The sort of hammering that suggests serious people in uniform on the other side.  The sort of people that wish to ask questions, such as... 'what the fuck happened to Ron and why did you do it?'”

Instinct took over, and Ian ran to the window, which overlooked the car park, which, he soon saw, was full of flashing blue lights.

“Oh bollocks,” he said. 


I have no idea what's going on here, 'cos... beer.  Help a drunken bastard out?


Futuristic Skies / Apocolypto (WT)
« on: July 04, 2019, 08:34:53 AM »
The war was never ending. It encompassed everything. The entire world, literally the entire world, was a battlefield scattered with the ruins of cities, even whole civilisations. Cultures had been wiped out, entire peoples erased, with no one left to remember they ever existed.

Max sometimes wished he had been wiped out. The miserable existence that he suffered, had suffered for almost all of his adult life, seemed to be more torture than it was worth a lot of the time.

Maybe he had died, he speculated as he crawled through a sea of mud towards the forward lookout post. Maybe he was in, what did the ancients call it? Hey. No, Hell, that was it. Some kind of life after death for those who had lived less than perfect lives, if he recalled his mythology classes. Well, perhaps Zhong had made a mistake when he came up with the Unifying theory which finally disproved religion. He'd obviously forgotten to carry a one or something. He was dead and in Hey...Hell.

Slithering over one more mound of mud, he took in the remains of the lookout post, and discovered that the soldiers manning it had been sent to their afterlives. A worm mine by the looks of it, and a big one too, to leave the gaping hole in the ground where the bunker had been. Chunks of battlecrete lay scattered around, blown outward. Mixed in with that were numerous body parts, torn apart in the blast. The head of one was directly in front of Max. By chance it had been cleanly severed, as if with a laser, or sharp knife, and had landed right way up. The woman's shocked expression glared at him accusingly, as if his late arrival was to blame for the whole fiasco.

Max slithered back behind the mud mound and rolled over onto his back, panting hard. It wasn't the bodies that had upset him, it was the fact that he knew the woman, Sergeant Hooper, and if she was dead, which she very clearly was, then he was next in line for promotion. To sergeant. Widely held to be the most unlucky rank in the squad.

Five-five squad, of which he as a proud member, had never, in its history, had a sergeant last longer than a week. Even, famously, Sergeant Thomas, who was on leave when promoted, was killed in a freak accident involving a runaway vehicle outside a coffee shop.

It had become so bad that promotion had been made sequential, with those who had been in the group longest promoted when the, inevitable, vacancy arose.

And now it was his turn. Max wondered if he could lie, just report Hooper MIA, but he knew that would only stave off the inevitable.

He was just about to start the long crawl back when something caught his eye. Sticking out of the never ending mud was... something shiny. Something that he couldn't recognise.

Intrigued, he checked that the coast looked clear, and pulled himself over to the item.

- x -

The bar was full of the usual atmosphere, which could be summed up as a 'dark murmer.' The scattering of usual customers, wedged into their chairs in the gloom sat about quietly, intent on the business of drinking hard and forgetting the real world as quickly and thoroughly as possible.

Dave, the barman, had just refilled a glass for a regular that was half slumped over the bar when the door, a dark portal at the far end of the room, crashed open.

Jumping back, Dave grabbed the baseball bat more out of instinct than anything else. The last time someone had come through the door like that it had been two guys out of their heads on acid. That wasn't pleasant. The bat still had some ominous dark stains on it from that incident.

This time though, the barman quickly realised he was out of his league. The man who entered,under normal circumstances, wouldn't have looked all that out of place. He was a tall man, dressed in a long black leather coat that had definitely seen better days, stained, torn and ragged as it was. His head was cropped short, with a tattoo on the muscular neck of some dark design. His left hand held a giant pistol of unfamiliar design, some still drifting out of the long barrel. The other hand held a wicked looking hatchet, with congealed liquid coating the metal head.

Despite all this, it was his face that caught Dave's attention. It was a face that had seen hell, apparently hitting quite a lot of it along the way, judging by the scrapes, cuts and bruising that adorned it.

As he staggered up to the bar, Dave stepped back. It was the man's eyes. They were dark, haunted eyes. Eyes that had seen too much, eyes that even the dead wouldn't envy.

The stranger sat down heavily upon a bar stool, oblivious of the reaction to the clientele, half of which were making haste for the exit, the other half watching expectantly, anticipating something different for once.

With a clunk the man placed the gun on the bar, followed a moment later by the hatchet, which splattered the counter with dark liquid blobs.

“Beer,” he said.

Dave pulled a beer and put it down in front of the man, who had watched him intently as he prepared it.

“That'll be, er...” He trailed off as those eyes bored into his skull. “...on the house.” He watched as the drink was lifted to cracked lips and downed in one desperate gulping go, much of it spilling over the already ruined coat, before the glass was slammed back down onto the bar.

“Another.” The voice was slightly less hoarse this time.

Dave complied, watching as the second glass was treated to an only slightly less urgent treatment than the last.

“Another?” He raised an eyebrow as the stranger gasped for air, slumping forward slightly.

As he began to draw another the door to the bar opened again, in a more normal fashion this time. Instantly the man grabbed his gun and whirled around to point it at the man entering the room, who shrieked and scuttled back out, double speed.

“Er, I'd rather you didn't kill my customers,” Dave said, as the man slowly lowered the weapon and, even more slowly, retook his seat. “Or frighted them off either. I have bills to keep you know,” he hinted.

The gun was placed gently back on the bar, and the half full, or in this case possibly half empty, glass was prised from away by a dirt covered, scarred and calloused hand.

“They're coming you know.” The man spoke in a rough, throaty voice. Then lifted the drink. This time the glass shook as it was emptied.

Dave took a punt. “They?”

His reward was to be grabbed by the collar and half dragged over the counter. Despite his struggles, and Dave wasn't an overly small or weak man, the hand gripped him like a vice, and he was unable to resist as he was pulled forward, to end up nose to nose with his new client.

“I can't go on anymore!” The desperate terror in the voice scared Dave more than the unrelenting grip. “You have to take it. Take it!!” Something cold and metal was thrust into his hand. “They can't have it! It'll mean the end! THE END!”

Then the world exploded. Dave was thrown back across his bar as two shadows erupted from apparently nowhere, grabbing at his new friend and pulling him back off the stool, but not before the man had grabbed the hatchet.

There was a flurry of violent activity. The hatchet rose and fell, and blood splattered across the room and over the remaining customers now fleeing or cowering in abject terror. One of the attackers, a blurry figure enveloped in a billowing black coat, fell back, and Dave caught a glimpse of an unnaturally white face before he was distracted by the man being thrown directly at him. He ducked, and the bottles above him smashed as the body bounced off them and landed on him.

He started to push his way out from underneath the dead weight when it was suddenly gone. He looked up to see an inhuman parody of a skull glaring down at him. One of the attackers. It hissed at him, and then turned its attention to the man, which it was holding up with one large, clawed, hand.

Dave took advantage of the creatures distraction and rolled clear, dragging himself up onto the bar.

He was grabbed from behind and swung about. The thing lunged forward, and stopped as Dave thrust the barrel of the large gun his friend had left behind on the counter into the creature's jaws and fired.

The explosion deafened him, and the recoil threw him backwards again. He landed hard, the breath knocked out of him.

Eventually the ringing in his ears stopped and he clambered shakily to his feet.

The bar was a mess, blood and flesh splattered over everything. He staggered over to the thing he'd killed, which now lay in a bony heap, its cape covering it like a shroud.

Dave wished he could think of something smart to say, like in the movies, but his mind had decided to go away and come back when things were calmer, so he just kicked it as he moved over to his latest customer, who was panting in a very unhealthy way on the floor.

Kneeling next to him he winced.

“Hey buddy,” he said. “Keep still, I'll get help.” He made to stand, but an arm shot out and pulled him closer.

“No. They cannot be allowed to get it. need to go. Run, kill them. Find the other”

He let out a last, final breath and slumped back. The hand holding Dave relaxed.

“Oh shit.”

Dave laid him down, gently, and then frowned. It? He remembered the item he'd been handed, and slipped his hand into his pocket, feeling the cold metallic thing there.

He pulled it out and examined it.

“Interesting.” He said.

- x -

Very carefully Shinto slid through the narrow tunnel. This was the most dangerous part, the place where he was most likely to be heard.

This part of the tunnel, uncovered through meticulous research in secret archives, passed between the guardroom of the royal quarters on one side, and general Matxu's office on the other. The royal cadre were elite, but Shinto was more concerned about the general. He was a legend, with skills honed on the almost mythical temple of Ho-hun.

So he used every trick, every skill, every stealth incantation at his disposal. He doubted there was any other who could match him in this regard.

It took nearly an hour to move through the two metre long section.

Even then, when he finally dropped down into the small, hidden room at the end, now within the royal quarters, the most dangerous part was still ahead. Yes, he was confident he could find the item and eliminate the princess, after all, she was only young, and all the rumours about her abilities, even if true, would be no match for his years of training. No, it was escaping with the item and eluding the inevitable chase. That would be the real challenge.

Shinto slipped into the corridors of the inner sanctum like a black cat on a dark night. Unseen, unheard he slid from one corner to the next, secure in the knowledge that the only people who were likely to be about were the royal family themselves, and possibly a servant.

It wasn't long then, before he arrived at the door. With a gesture to invoke the cantrip of decisive action, he slid the door to one side and slipped into the room.

Inside the room was sparsely decorated. At first glance one could mistake it for a peasants' room, but then, on closer inspection, you would notice the rugs, made of the finest silks, the trunk, desk, and chair carved by master craftsmen out of dark red, thousand year old mu-shi wood. The bed itself, with covers made from the wool from the legendary white mountain ox, and the pillow – flayed skin from the last of the defeated blue sword tribe, that now extinct warrior people.

Yet none of this concerned Shinto. It was the head that rested on the pillow that his gaze alighted on. First her, and then the item, no doubt in the trunk.

Time to act. He slid Silk Terror from its scabbard. The small blade was a legend in of itself, and tonight it would taste the blood of its highest profile victim to date.

Sliding over to the recumbent form, Shinto raised the weapon and, in one smooth motion, brought it down for the death stroke.

There was a breeze, and suddenly the princess was not there, the blade sliced the blanket, causing damage to that would cost a years wages of a village to pay to repair.

“Assassin!” Behind him!

He turned, even in his shock preparing for combat, pulling The Red Edge from its sheath. It was longer than Silk Terror, but still short enough to wield at close quarters.

The princess, a tiny figure next to him, stood with her own blade ready. Her pose was that of Undying Snake, an impossibly advanced stance for one so young. Still, Shinto responded, adopting the attacking position of Silver Fire.

They stood there for a moment, facing each other, evaluating.

Shinto moved, using both blades in a combination attack of Thrust and Slice.

The Princess moved. Her body impossibly sliding between both weapons using the Water in Air counter. Shinto could barely follow her moves, and had to do a backflip to avoid her.

“Impressive Princess,” he hissed, “but too slow.”

“Was I, assassin?” she replied, holding up her weapon. The steel was coated with something dark along one edge.

Shinto looked down, to see his stomach open and his insides slip out onto the floor. He gaped at the young girl, as she stepped forward and raised her blade once more.

- * -

Princess Xy wiped her knife on the body of the would be assassin before sheathing it. Then she bowed to the ghost of her enemy, as ritual dictated. She had no wish to be haunted by his shade for disrespect.

Protocol followed, she padded gently over to the secret panel in the base of her bed and opened it. Unrolling the purple velvet she looked at the shiny metallic object within. Soon, very soon, legend said, the time would come for it to be used.

She hoped she would be ready.

Fiction Park / The Other One.
« on: June 02, 2019, 09:45:24 PM »
Warning!  Adult content in this story.  Probably.



“So boooring,” Mike said to himself, as he wandered down the chocolate aisle.  That was the problem with working night-shift at a re-fuelling station in the middle of nowhere. 

The road outside had been devoid of any traffic for at least an hour, and he'd not had a customer for at least two.

“Booring,” he repeated.  Then.  “Hello.”  A car had just pulled up outside.  A large, black, expensive SUV.  Not your run of the mill vehicle. 

He scampered back behind the counter and waited, curious to see who the driver was.

After about two minutes he frowned.  The doors remained firmly closed, and it hadn't moved.  He was considering going out to see if they realised the station was self service when, finally, someone stepped out.

Mike's jaw dropped.

The woman, and she was all woman, who exited the vehicle was drop dead, smoking super-model hot.  She was wearing a long black coat, cut off at the arms.  As she walked, it blew open slightly.  He wasn't totally sure, but it really looked like she wasn't wearing anything underneath.

The doorbell rang as the goddess pushed the door open.

“Hel...”  Mike's voice cracked. “Hello there,” he managed to finally get out.  “How can I service... be of service to you today... tonight.”

The woman just smiled and played with her long blonde hair as she strode closer, her black, high heeled boots clicking on the tiles of the shop.  Mike swallowed.

Finally she stood before him on the other side of the counter.  Slowly, and with the smile of the devil herself, she leaned forward, giving Mike a gobsmacking view down her top.

She wasn't wearing anything underneath.

“Hello,” she said.  Her voice was like the purr of a cat.

“H...h...hi,” he managed to get out in reply.

“Would you do me a favour?” she asked.


“Open the register and give me all the money.”  She smiled widely.



”I... I'm sorry miss, I can't...” he stopped.  The woman had pulled a enormous gun from somewhere and was now pressing the barrel against his forehead.

“Please?” she asked again.

“S...sure.”  Mike, to his everlasting shame, pissed himself.

“Go on then,” she said, pushing his head back with the gun.

Urine leaking down his leg, Mike, hands trembling, moved over to the register.  He was just about to open it when he became aware of the reflection of a flashing blue light coming from outside.

“Oh cunt.”  His customer snarled as she saw the cop car screech to a halt outside, disgorging police as it did so.  She whirled back to Mike.  “I didn't tell you to stop!”

Mike gulped and pressed the button to open the till.

“You, in the shop!”  The male voice shouted through a megaphone.  “Come out with...”

What she should come out with was left unknown, as the woman opened fire, blasting away and shattering the glass at the front of the shop.  The coppers outside dived for cover, just as another two cars and a van pulled up.  Mike ducked down behind the counter and started to scuttle away, only for his progress to stop abruptly as something grabbed his leg.

“You!  Where are you going?”

Mike rolled over onto his back and looked up.  The woman's eyes were, terrifyingly, glowing a dull red, and her arms seem to have swelled, showing muscles a body builder would be proud of.  The coat seemed to be struggling to contain her.

“Put down the gun and come out!” came another megaphoned warning from outside.

“Come and get me copper” she shouted back, loosing off another volley of shots.  At the same time she pulled Mike along the floor, apparently with no effort.

“Last chan...” the police officers' message was cut short by another fusillade.  The gun had to be some kind of semi-automatic weapon.

This time a barrage of shots replied, blowing chunks out of the counter and the rear of the shop.  Mike covered his face with his arms and screamed like a bitch, but the woman, if that's what she was, simply threw back her head with maniacal laughter. 

“Is that the best you've got pigs?” she screamed, as bullets slammed into the wall all around her.  “Here, try one of these!”  She pulled something out of her pocket, did something with it and threw it towards the massed police.

There was a short lull in shooting, followed by a massive explosion. Mike, having already emptied his bladder, now voided his bowels, as his place of employment turned into a fiery scene from hell. 

The woman howled with laughter again, barely audible now against the backdrop of explosions and screams from outside, and loosed off even more shots before turning her attention to the till, which had been blown open in the exchange.  She scooped up a handful of bills and turned her attention to Mike.  Reaching down, she pulled him up with one burly hand.

Her face was now more demonic than beautiful.  Eyes glowed red, her hair was now black, and seemed to move around in a snake-like manner of its own accord.  As she opened her mouth, he saw her teeth had become sharpened spikes. 

“Mummy!” he exclaimed as he was pulled close.

“You,” she hissed, “you are cute.”  An impossibly long, narrow tongue slipped out of her mouth and, slowly, licked his face from chin to hairline. 

As another giant explosion shook the ground beneath them, she smiled.  “I've enjoyed our date.  I think you'll be seeing me again.”

So saying she leaned forward and kissed Mike.  Despite everything, the kiss literally took his breath  away.  A feeling of nirvana swept through his body.  His legs, already weak, gave way, and he would have collapsed had she not held him up. 

Their encounter was interrupted by the arrival of more police. 

“Later lover.”  Suddenly she was the super hot babe from before again.

Then Mike was on the floor, unable to move despite the glow of flames getting closer.

When he recovered enough to move the woman was gone.

“She didn't even tell me her name,” he croaked, and passed out.


So, this is kind of a prologue, and doesn't really have a suggestion phase in the traditional sense, but I'd like (feedback and) comments on what Mike does next.  How has this affected him?  Etc.

Shorts Station / Beating
« on: June 02, 2019, 07:42:46 PM »
"Is that all?" the first man asked, sneering at me.
His friend threw my wallet to one side and waved the cash he'd removed.  "Afraid so."
"Not your night is it?"  The first assailant tightened his grip about my neck and punched me in the gut.
As I wheezed and choked, and wondered if this alley would be where I died.  Dying in a small side street where I'd stopped to take a leak!
Maybe not.  The man let me go, and I slid down the wall, gasping for air.
"Is that all?" he repeated.
"Y...yes," I gasped.
"Yes what?"
"Yes officer."

Public Plaza / Apologies
« on: June 01, 2019, 05:01:24 PM »
Hi there.

This is Chinaren.

I started (Yars, I was also Overlord) some years ago, as some of you will remember.

Then, I guess about 2014 it disappeared.  Maybe the regulars would have guessed something was up, 'cos I also disappeared, probably a bit before it did. 

So first, I apologise for all the great stories that were lost with Tome.

You see, without going into specifics, I suffered not one, but a series of personal disasters in RL.  I mean, it was one life changing (and nearly life destroying) event after another.  Things went downhill for me, really really downhill.  I mean, it went from bad to worse to abysmal to cataclysmic...

Anyway, to cut a long and horrible story short, I hit rock bottom and stayed there for a while.

However, hopefully, I am slowly rising again.  Enough to finally log back on and think about writing once more.  I hope this will not be a transient thing, but there's always a chance.

I have had plans to bring Tome back, strangely enough it was one of the things that kept me going during the Dark Times.  Funny that.  I do have (an out of date) backup, but I can't get to my old files yet, probably not for some months at least. I do still own the TomeCity domain name, and a few others, but there are some admin and technical hurdles to overcome before I can, hopefully, get my hands back on them. 

And then I find this!  I'm not sure what to feel really.  Flattered for sure!  How did you manage to recover all the graphics?

Anyway, glad to see you all again.  Glad to be able to see you all again!

I'll be around. 

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