Crime Fiction Author

Visit Sites in “Her Perfume”, my Latest Short Story

My story “Her Perfume” due out in the Mesdames of Mayhem’s music-themed anthology, In the Key of 13, on October 26th is set in the Welsh town of Chepstow, a place I’ve visited many times. Yet despite Chepstow boasting one of the oldest imposing Norman castles, it’s not as well known as a tourist spot. So I thought I’d share some sites featured in this story of dangerous romance and espionage.

And so My Story Begins….

Despite the bright August sun, a chill wind swept through the ruined castle’s grounds and ruffled Julie’s chestnut hair. Shivering, she hugged her denim jacket close and moved next to the low stone wall rimming the promontory’s brink. There she drank in the panorama of the silty brown river snaking its way through the Wye Valley.

Low stone wall of Chepstow Castle balcony

“As they drove through the arch of the crenellated tower of the medieval town gate on High Street, Julie counted her breaths in an effort to calm the quickened pulsing of her heart.”

Chepstow medieval town gate

“He let her take off by herself, only walking beside her when they reached the bridge. They stood together, but not touching, to admire the limestone cliffs and the Regency cast-iron bridge.”

Regency cast-iron bridge over the River Wye.

“At the door to her semi-detached house in The Mount gated community, Julie surprised herself by asking Gareth in for coffee.”

The Mount gated housing in Chepstow.

“Out of the blue, a black hatchback barreled from the hidden side road at the bottom of the hill and accelerated up Beaufort Square Street…. Gareth leapt and snatched her out of the car’s track, flipping her on top of him onto the asphalt.”

The intersection between Beaufort Square's High Street and Beaufort Square Street

“Set among the pine-covered hills of the Wye Valley and manicured lawns dotted by yellow daisies, the ruins of Tintern Abbey rose in all their magical mystical majesty.”

Tintern Abbey

What happens next?

You’ll have to read the story to find out what the rest of the story. In the meantime, here’s a preview of “Perfume“, the song by Rag’n’Bone Man that inspired “Her Perfume“.

Order In the Key of 13 Anthology

You can pre-order our Mesdames of Mayhem’s fourth anthology, In the Key of 13, through Amazon.

Don’t miss our official launch at the Sleuth of Baker Street bookstore in Toronto, Oct. 26, from 2 to 4 p.m.


  1. Pat

    Fascinating, Marilyn, how words and images fit together!

    • marilynkay

      Thank you, Pat. I was looking to bring Chepstow to life as well as my characters and story. Chepstow is really another character in the story.

  2. June Lorraine Roberts

    Great post Marilyn, the images are amazing

    • marilynkay

      Thank you so much, June Lorraine. The images are all my own. It’s easy when there is so much that is photogenic in Wales. 🙂

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