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The Veiled Thread

The Veiled Thread


Stephen Twartz


Fiction, Action and Adventure, Historical, Drama

Publish Date

April 2, 2020

Short Description

Eiric O’Sullivan walked his horse the last few feet, up the steep rocky path to the top of the hill. A brisk cool breeze blew across the hilltop, bracing after the warmth of the climb in the lee of the hill. This was where he was meant to be. He knew it, felt it in the marrow of his bones.

But fate would have it otherwise.

Two men’s lives, one caught up in the hysteria of a war, both caught in a web of their infidelities and self-doubt, separated by a generation, bound together by the horrors of an insane conflict.

At the core of this tale is Eiric O’Sullivan and his fateful journey, with his two brothers and a resourceful, laconic aboriginal man, through war in Palestine, a war that leads to the death of one brother, estrangement of another and the ruin of Eiric.

Graphic depiction of war against the Turks in Palestine is interwoven in the narrative with the gradual degradation of Eiric’s spirit, through the malaise of the Great Depression and into looming war with Nazi Germany. His grandson Harry, also suffers the guilt and self-doubt that was born almost ninety years ago, on the killing fields of the Levant. Harry carries the genes of infidelity, self-loathing and bitterness, the origins of which he cannot comprehend. Its torn legacy has passed through generations to form a new interpretation of that trauma.

In desperation, Harry turns to Eiric, an old man now, in search of the source of his doubts and in the process unleashes a torrent of bitterness and recrimination within a divided family, a family grappling with the fallout from the madness of war.

The story moves repeatedly from the past to the present to draw parallels between grandfather and grandson until the stories’ climax, when Harry and Eiric understand their parts in the inheritance of the trauma of the past.

This is a story that delves into the phenomenon of epi-genetics, its impact on successive generations and the destruction of hope in those who have no understanding of the origins of their depression and sense of helplessness.


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