RUST – Dark Caves

Here is another look into my Rust novel. If you want to know what happens next you can find out in chapter seventeen of the novel, it is all in one post just scroll down to find it.

The scene is colored pencil, but the cave mouth is black acrylic. It has been given an orange filter by way of a photo editing program. I’ll be interested to know your views on the subject of dark caves – ones you have drawn or ones you might have visited. They are so full of wonderful and terrifying possibilities.


 Boats resembling tarnished, cybernetic swans were strewn about, perhaps, by a past flood. One of them rested well above the water line and within Amelia’s reach.

She tried out the old peddle powered tub. Surprisingly it was functional, if not a bit squeaky. She shoved it over an embankment and into the brown murk. “Safe enough for a quick crossing, I guess.”

They drifted out, into a drone of frogs and cicadas, gently colliding with a another swan, up to it’s neck in the creek. A reflector eye glared up at them. “Must not be very deep then.” She concluded when it’s hull scraped a sandy bottom. “Still wouldn’t swim in it though.”

Over the croak of the frogs and squeak of the pedals she heard the sunken swan scrape bottom again. She looked and saw it drifting out toward the center of the stream. Had she bumped it a second time? Suddenly she felt the urge to peddle faster.

Amelia wasn’t looking forward to meeting the kind of people who would play these kinds of games, or being graded on her awkward tactics afterward, but when the boat she was desperately peddling turned on it’s own and headed for a dark cave she would have been happy to see any fellow human.

Amelia hadn’t noticed if there was machinery attached her swan. She stopped peddling. The boat still moved against the current. She turned the wheel but to no avail. Shiner joined the fight by barking at the water.

It was all he could do as a condemned concrete cavern drew them in.


14 thoughts on “RUST – Dark Caves

  1. Aha– I like how you left us yearning for more at the end– an excellent way to compel us to turn the next page.

    We have swan boats here in Oakland, right next to Fairlyland, so I can see this perfectly.

    This piece has fabulous forward motion. The only word that let me down was “quaint.” The suspense was leading me to something a bit more ominous-feeling, I guess.

    • rastelly says:

      Quaint can be changed. My reason for using it relates to
      the fact the cave is an artificial boat tunnel that was once
      part of the abndoned Park Amelia and her dog are exploring –
      It was quaint at one time – a sort of “tunnel of love” thing. It
      sill has a quaint appearence – but words like cheesy and Faux
      sounded worse. It was once inviting and safe but now who
      knows what lives in there – was the point I was trying to make.
      Further note – Amelia was given a secret message telling her
      to come to this place but so far she has found no one – only
      hints of it’s strange history remain. 😉

      I actually edited the sample piece to remove all references to other
      things going on, so that it would be easier to understand out of context.

      Once again thanks for your input, third party feedback is always
      welcome. 🙂

      P.S What if I – replaced Quaint with Condemed?

  2. Sharmishtha says:

    just as you suggested, i copied your story and read it slowly. its amazing.

    your imagination is terrific. i love the way you are illustrating them. the story itself is fantastic and your fabulous illustrations are adding further beauty to it.

    all the best for the novel.

  3. rastelly says:

    Thanks sincerely 😀 It’s good to know I
    have readers! I’m honered you took the

  4. jakethrasher says:

    I love the feel of your picture. I really like your style. The piece really has a nice composition and the cave gives it a nice natural boarder. How long does one of your pieces take you to complete?

    • rastelly says:

      This one took four days but I was distracted. I planed it
      out and did the cave first, then I had a headache and stopped
      for fear I’de ruin it if I pushed too hard. The next day, two
      of my best friends came over and I sketched the water with a
      clipboard while I was hanging out with them –

      Only three pencils were needed for the water, light powder
      blue, slate, and a normalpencil to plan them out. The next day
      I had a dental appointment so I only had time to plan out the
      skyline – the next day I finnished it. I was very dissipointed
      as it did not seem to reflect the eerie feel of my Rust story –
      (Colors didden’t jive quite right.)

      I experimented with different filters on a photo – editior and was
      soon satisfied with the effect. I also colored in shadows under the
      boats at the last minute. On the days I worked – I had no work or school
      – the origional was done on a standard sheet of printer paper. Hope
      this gives you some idea of the time involved, for this particular
      image – the flying centipede and green dragon in my poetry section
      were thought up over a period of several days and colored and contoured
      in one sitting. 🙂

  5. Sharmishtha says:

    i can guess the patience and the expertise of fingers. the reason i stopped trying brush and paper was i always screwed up the paintings at end 🙂

    in computer one can atleast save the older copies before experimenting.

    • rastelly says:

      That is what I used to do – but
      my drawing program took me
      forever to figure out, once the
      version was updated, I was too
      lazy to learn the new one.

      Also you can erase colored
      pencil somewhat – I did the
      cave first – that was the riskiest,
      if I messed it up I woulden’t
      have so much to loose.

      Another thing I often do is
      make copies of a half – completed
      picture at a printing place – the one
      in town is cheep – as long as it’s not
      on glossy paper and I am using dry
      media such as pencil or crayon, it
      can work. But that’s if only if I’m
      really worried. 🙂 Still, I’de be willing
      to bet the computer is more
      convienient. I guess I just work
      faster off – screen.

  6. Hi Rastelly, Love the picture you did.. and you weaved us an interesting story too.. as the carvern drew them in.. I remember as a child there was an old building with a dark tunnel that led to a gated back yard in which it was said that there was a Ghost.. As children we would dare each other to walk up the dark tunnel to the gate… It was cold and damp under there and although I know lots more now-adays 🙂 .. I used to have nighmares of that tunnel and what lay behind the locked gate at the end… Funny that your story would bring that to mind.. But Im happy that it did.. for along with it it brought memories of those long lost school friends too… 🙂
    Blessings to you xx ~Sue

  7. rastelly says:

    Yay! I finnally got story. I love leaving stories
    lieing around but never thought I get one myself.
    There was and old ditch behind my grandmother’s
    house. A local boy said that it contained mutant
    alligators – (Someone had dumped plutonimum
    there, was the story.) He called himself Bucko
    and loved watching B-movies.

    I went to a party once at a diner on the first
    floor of a vacant hotel. The birthday girl showed
    us the locked doors leading into the empty building
    and told use that the hotel went out of business
    because it was haunted. Every morning when
    they open the diner they chased the ghosts back
    up into the hotel, and locked the doors.

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