Friday, 22 May 2015

Writing - Who is Patrick A Steele?

In the run up to publishing Grace and Favour I thought that it may be relevant to refresh the readers' memories as to who Patrick Steele is. The fullest explanation of why he's turned out as he did is in the 5th Steele novel 'Inceptus' and there is a longer section on the Extract Tab at the top of this page. 

So why is Steele the self-appointed purveyor of justice to the ill-treated? I will try and give you some pointers.

Patrick Steele had a fairly normal childhood in the north east of England until the age of twelve. He was brought up on the outskirts of Sunderland, the only son of a colliery mechanic and a civil servant. Then one day, attending school in the nearby town of Houghton-le-Spring things changed.

(Steele continues)
There was no difference between this day and any other when I set off and the morning lessons were as they should be without any surprises or undue stresses although the Geography teacher was a bit hard on our self-confessed class fool. Lunchtime was the usually rapidly consumed tasteless fayre and then outside for a kick around before the afternoon of learning re-commenced. It was quite a shock for me when one of the prefects, a favoured sixth former, called me away from the game in which I was involved to tell me that the deputy head wanted to speak to me urgently. I was worried immediately because when you had to see Norman, his name was Norman Moss; it was inevitably bad news and usually involved punishment of some type.

“Come in Patrick,” instructed the deputy kindly which was unusual. Normally boys were addressed by their surnames. “Close the door.”
            I did as I was asked but then became aware that Moss was not alone. My class teacher, Mrs Skews was there also and looked rather flushed in the face.
“Sit down please Patrick,” asked Mr Moss quietly.

“Patrick,” began Mr Moss with a sigh. “There is no easy way to tell you this.”
            He’d stopped again and was looking down at a pen he was fiddling with between his large, red hands. Norman had been a Regimental Sergeant Major in the Royal Marines during World War II a fact of which he was rightly proud but today he just seemed to be an old man.
“There’s been an accident,” he went on. “A car accident and unfortunately your mum and dad were involved.”
            He paused and looked at me for the first time since I’d sat down but his eyes seemed more rheumy than usual and Mrs Skews sniffed slightly and dabbed at her nose with a handkerchief. I didn’t know whether they were waiting for me to say something but I seemed to have lost the power of speech. Looking back all I could remember were the words ‘There’s been an accident’ and they whirled round and round inside my head. Norman Moss seemed to have given up and had gone back to contemplating his biro.
“Patrick I’m really sorry,” began my class teacher in the local accent. “Your Mam and Dad have been killed.”

So tragedy had struck in his early life but the fates weren't done with the lad.

Another day at school, another call to the head teacher’s and more long faces but this time there was a person from social services, local government mafia, in place to ensure the stupidest rules created by man could be put into practise. I don’t remember her name but she was to be a central point of reference for me for some time. 
This time it wasn’t Norman Moss, he’d retired as had the head, they just all seemed like grey people to me, no relationships, rule followers frightened of stepping into humanity.
“Your Uncle died in an accident at home this morning Patrick. I’m really sorry,” stated the head.

“We’ve arranged for you to go and live with a family not far from here…..,” the social services woman’s voice drifted over my head as the shock of losing my nearest relative hit me for the second time in my short life.  
Listening to the submissions by various people at the inquest a policeman stated that the house had been broken into on the day of the fire. When asked if that fact could have brought about my Uncle’s stroke a pathologist just stated that it couldn’t be ruled out. 

The above factors would be enough to disturb the balance of any person and Steele was no exception. He began acquiring skills and a temper that were to lead to trouble and revenge.
There is a lot more detail on the Extracts page and of course every aspect is brought together in the story. To buy the book in either paperback £3.12, or for Kindle £2.99, click on the link at the top of this page.

God Bless