Trauma Llama – Twisted Fire Starters with C L Raven

You may have noticed there was no Trauma Llama tale last week. I ran out of entries. Shocked honestly that it’s gone on this long. But when I pointed this out, my Twitter crushes Cat and Lynx Raven kindly submitted TWO brand new trauma llama tales. This is the first one. If you’re not already following them, you really should. And you ought to read their blog where they post their real life adventures. And don’t forget their ghosthunting show “C.A.T.S. Calamityville Horror” on YouTube.

Before we get to the trauma, check out their book of horror short stories Gunning Down Romance. Here’s the blurb:

Three chilling stories themed around the dark side of love – one woman embarks on a grisly quest to create the perfect lover; a man uses his life’s work to ensure his lovers stay with him forever and a reincarnated saint has a unique, macabre way of punishing unfaithful lovers which keeps her alive. All their unfortunate lovers will experience a Valentine’s Day they will never forget.

Get this FREE at Smashwords!



Here is the lovely ladies’ second Trauma Llama tale:

We have a career lined up for when the writing fails – accidental arsonists. Yes it doesn’t pay (hell, neither does writing) but at least we might get to meet some hotty firemen. You don’t get THAT with writing.

Our tales of woe involving fire are well-known. It might actually be the top thing we’re known for.  (That and a certain accident involving a fireman’s pole in a children’s playground). We left a chopping board on top of a lit lightbulb and melted a hole in it. Twice. We also left a plastic bag on the same lightbulb. You might think this is hard to do. It’s frighteningly easy. These were in the days when we used to heat our African snails’ tanks with lightbulbs. We’ve now switched to heat pads. It’s safer for everyone. The smell of singed plastic takes a long time to dissipate. There have also been many incidents involving candles. One particularly memorable one was where we attempted to extinguish an out of control candle by flicking water over it. This resulted in a fireball shooting towards the polystyrene tiles on our kitchen ceiling. And there was the time the Dyson vacuum cleaner shot flames out the back with a guttural sound that was scarily demonic. Never loses suction? Don’t think so.

But our trauma llama tale involves a cooker.  We were making our legendary  vegan shortbread and switched the oven on to preheat it. Then forgot about it while we cleaned the kitchen. Turned out, we also forgot about the grill that we’d left in there. The grill that was filled with fat from past roast potatoes. You guessed it. It caught fire. We turned around to see flames coming up through the hob. We frantically thought back to our fire safety lessons in high school and couldn’t remember whether in situations like this throwing water on it was the right thing to do or not. We never really paid attention in school. We were too busy plotting the gruesome demise of our classmates. So did we take advantage and phone for the aforementioned hotty firemen? No. We phoned our uncle while we watched the flames get higher.

Fortunately, there’s no record of the phonecall, but we think it went something like this:

Him “hello?”

Us “the cooker’s on fire.” (We’re not great at small talk.)

Him “What you mean the cooker’s on fire?”

Us “There’s flames coming up through the hob. We left the grill in.”

Him “You bloody idiots!” (This is his nickname for us). “Have you taken the grill out?”

Us “No.”

Him “Take the bloody grill out! And throw a bucket of water over it!”

So we did. And the house was saved.

Until we did it again. This time, we knew how to save the house and were too embarrassed to phone our uncle for assistance. But sadly, we couldn’t save the cooker. Two disastrous fires were just too much and it was curtains for the cooker. Then mum had a new kitchen installed and a new cooker. You guessed it, we did it again. But luckily we managed to get the grill out in time. Have we learned our lesson? Meh. But we’re getting better.

At least, with the cooker.

Four years ago, the cylinder head gasket went on one of our beloved Renault 4s (Reapers). The garage refused to touch it ‘cos of wet liners in the engine. We’re of the opinion ‘it’s broken anyway, what’s the worst we could do’? So, armed with our Haynes manual, substandard tools and way too much enthusiasm, we set about dismantling our car. Happy to say, we succeeded until we tightened the water pump screws and snapped them off. We thought the guys at the cylinder head skimming place would laugh at us for being ‘girls’, but they were actually impressed we were having a go. So we had to do the whole thing again. But this time we were quicker. Then came the magical moment of starting him for the first time.

We stood by, ready to burst into applause.

Reapers burst into flames.

Turned out, liberally spraying him with carb cleaner after forgetting to reattach a fuel pipe was a recipe for disaster.

Ever the quick thinkers, we dashed to the house.

“Where are you going?” shouted our mum.

“To get the camera!”

“Forget the camera, get the fire extinguisher!”

We reluctantly returned and fetched the extinguisher from the boot. (Yes we suspected fire was a possibility).  Have you ever seen the Germans episode of Fawlty Towers where there’s a fire and Basil is reading the instructions on the extinguisher? That was us. Then we misread ‘point at base of fire’ as ‘point base at fire’ so we did. Then pulled the trigger.

And got a face full of blue powder. Coughing in the fumes, as our mum laughed at our misfortune, we then managed to get it right and put out the flames. We then dashed into the back garden to breathe uncontaminated air. Reapers was saved, though now covered in blue powder. His engine bay is rustier than it used to be but there’s a rare happy ending. Reapers still drives to this day.

And we never got our photo.


Those poor cookers!
*cough* You could always use writing research as an excuse to chat up hottie firemen 😉

Do you have a Trauma Llama story you’d like to share? Prod me on Twitter (@AnyaBreton) or e-mail me anya at 🙂

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