PART 7 of MURDER MYSTERY

“Phew!” said Cheryl to Geoff. This is turning into a real drama! Who’d have thought we’d end up getting involved in all this? Fancy finding a body on the aerodrome! Mind you, it’s a massive place. There used to be air raid shelters there from in the War. I always wanted to go down into one, but they wouldn’t let me because they said they were unsafe and could collapse at any time. There were a lot of American airmen there at one time for quite a few years after the War. They used to congregate in the village pub. All the girls were wowed by them. They were something a bit different! They certainly left their mark in the village though – made a few of the girls pregnant.”

“I don’t suppose they were very popular with the mums and dads then,” said Geoff.

“No, not exactly,” said Cheryl. “My mum told me all about it. Her sister was one of them.”

“Oh, I didn’t realise that was how Jim came into the world,” said Geoff.

“Yes,” said Cheryl. “My grandmother brought him up as one of her own. She loved him to bits.. His mother ran off and no one ever knew where she was. She put in an appearance every now and then, but never stayed for long.”

“I suppose there would be a few people who would have liked to have wrung the necks of a few American airmen then,” said Geoff.

“You could say that,” said Cheryl. “Some of them did the right thing though and married the girls and took them back to the States.”

With that they arrived at Janice’s.

“I wondered when you’d be here,” said Janice. “Have you heard? There’s been a body found on the aerodrome.”

“Yes, we’ve just heard,” said Cheryl. “We saw Mr. Batty and the vicar on the way here.”

“All we know is that it’s a man,” said Geoff.

“It could be anybody,” said Janice. “I wonder if anyone has gone missing from the village?”

“I suppose that’s the question the police are asking,” said Geoff. “I bet they’ll be doing a bit of door knocking soon.”

“Maybe they know who it is already but are just keeping it quiet,” suggested Janice. “Anyway, how about we go down to the pub for a meal?  If there’s any gossip going on it’ll certainly be going on in there.”

“O.K.” said Cheryl. “That sounds like a good idea.”

The pub was buzzing when they got there, but they found a table and sat down. Geoff went to the bar and ordered drinks and meals.

“The vicar’s over there,” said Geoff. “Propping up the bar. He’s in his element.”

As they sat waiting for their meals the vicar came across to them.

“Have you heard about the body on the aerodrome?” he said. “Apparently it’s an American, and guess what, they found a German medal on him with a swastika on it!”

Everyone gasped.

“How on earth did he come to be there!” exclaimed Geoff.

“That’s what the police are trying to find out,” said the vicar. “What with a World War II false leg in the churchyard and now this,” said the vicar “they’ve got their pot on!”

 

Nomination for Neat Blogger Award

Kevinkaz4 from   https://thoughtstoholdonto.com/   has kindly nominated me for the Beat Blogger Award.  Thankyou so much Kevin. 😊

I don’t normally do these because they are very hard for me to do and also I find it difficult to pick out just a few Bloggers for this Award.  Everyone who writes a Blog is great!

However, it’s nice to answer the questions so, if it’s alright with you Kevin I will just do that, but I felt so happy last night when I saw that you had nominated me.  Made my night!

So here are the questions that Kevin put to me, and my answers:

1. What is your favourite fruit?

I have to say strawberries. But I have to have them with lots of carnation tinned milk on them. I always have to be different 😀

2. What is your favourite emotion to write about?

I guess I would have to say sadness because I have had so much sadness in my life, so it is the easiest one to write about, but I like to try and find some joy or peace within the sadness.

3. If you could read one book for the rest of your life what would it be?

That’s an easy one to answer. It would be “Rebecca” by Daphne Du Maurier. I have already read it numerous times since I was a teenager, and I know some bits  off by heart, especially that spectacular beginning. I would never tire of reading it. The writing is brilliant, and it just goes straight to my heart.

4. What is your biggest difficulty wuth writing?

Well I guess I am different to many because one of my difficulties is being able to stop! The words just come and come and come!

5. What is something you can’t live without?

My dog. Not sure if that counts or not, but she’s called Hope, and I could not function without her.

6. If you had unlimited money what would you do with it?

I would buy a house that is suitable for my husbabd’s needs and mine as we are both disabled, in wheelchairs and I am blind. So it would have to be large, and adapted properly, with low level kitchen worktops and cupboards, and various other things. It would have to be out in the countryside as I hate towns and we live in a town at the moment. I love nature, and long to be back in it again.

7. What is your favourite season?

Spring, as I hate it too hot, or too cold. And Spring has beautiful colours and the promise of new life. Light afrer dark.

 

PART 6 OF MURDER MYSTERY

Bigley Bottom was buzzing. As Geoff and Cheryl drove past the end of the road that the church was on, they saw Mr. Batty ambling along reading a newspaper.

“That’s not like him,” said Cheryl. “He’s usually getting along smartly, doing his policeman act.”

“Well it looks like there might be some real policemen in the churchyard now,” remarked Geoff.

“Oh yes,” said Cheryl. “Wonder what they’re doing now.”

Geoff had slowed right down and stopped just past the road end. Suddenly Mr. Batty appeared, closely followed by the vicar. Upon seeing the car, Mr. Batty came up to them.

“What a to do,” he said. “Have you heard the news?”

“Well if it’s about the false leg in the churchyard, then yes.”

Mr. Batty turned and shouted to the vicar,

“Bernard, can you come here a minute?”

The Revd. Bernard Tomlinson, wearing green shorts and a clerical collar, approached the car.

“This is Cheryl and Geoff,” said Mr. Batty. “Found Cheryl wandering down the path in her wheelchair in the churchyard yesterday. Looking for her grandfather’s grave. She was about to go into the church as well, and I told her to watch out for bodies.”

Bernard let out a loud guffaw.

“Oh yes, the bats,” he said.

“But now there’s a REAL body. A HUMAN one.”

Cheryl gasped.

“Where?” she asked.

“Up on the aerodrome,” said Mr. Batty.

“Oh my. That’s right opposite to where my grandparents’ farm was. They pulled the farmhouse down and built a modern ranch style bungalow there. How creepy.”

“Well as long as they don’t come and die in my churchyard,” quipped Bernard. “We’re full up, and what with false legs kipping in there as well!”

“Apparently it’s a WW II leg,” said Mr. Batty. “And the police have now taken it into custody. At least it’s not littering up the churchyard now anyway.

“So what about the body on the aerodrome?” said Cheryl.

“We don’t know much about it except that it’s a man,” said Mr. Batty. “And before you ask, he had two legs, not one!”

“That aerodrome always gave me the creeps,” said Cheryl. “A plane crashed onto my grandparents’ field in WWII. It missed the runway, and it was left there until well after the War, and I was there the day they finally took it away. It seemed massive to me, and kind of scary. I’ll never forget it. I was five.”

“It’s certainly a lonely place,” said Mr. Batty. There’s no lights up there at all at nights. Attracts a lot of courting couples.”

Bernard stood there listening with a wry smile on his face.

“Yes, sin is alive and well in this village. But it’s such fun. Better than telly, or one of my sermons.”

Mr. Batty laughed loudly.

“Anyway,” said Bernard, turning towards Cheryl. “Maybe you could call off at the vicarage later and I’ll get the plan of the churchyard out. I’m off to see someone about a funeral now.”

“O.K.” said Cheryl. And with that, Bernard was away, apsinging a merry tune quietly to himself.

“I told you he was alright,” said Mr. Batty. “I’d better be away too. There’s quite a bit of litter around the parish hall, and then later we’ve got a birthday party over at the Grizzlys.”

“See you around then,” said Cheryl. “I’m off to see Janice now. Wonder what she’ll say to all this lot!”

PART 5 of MURDER MYSTERY

Cheryl’s mind boggled at the thoughts of a false leg resting in peace in the churchyard. Who on earth put it there and why?

She was up bright and early the next morning, eager to get to Bigley Bottom. She suddenly felt she had a new lease of life. For the past few years she had been caught up in all kinds of personal tragedies and life had become difficult and tedious. But to meet Janice again was amazing, and to get caught up in the mysterious appearance of a reposing false leg was even more amazing. Not to mention meeting the ubiquitous Mr. Batty! And by all accounts the vicar was quite a match for him.

Breakfast was over and done with quite quickly, and Cheryl and Geoff were soon on their way to Bigley Bottom.

“I wonder if there’s been any developments overnight,” said Cheryl.

“Well we’ll soon find out,” said Geoff. “I bet this is the biggest bit of excitement the village has had n a long time.”

“Mr. Batty certainly seems to be revelling in it,” said Cheryl. “Did you know his son is married to my cousin?”

“No, you never said,“ replied Geoff.

“Well I didn’t realise it myself at first,“ said Cheryl. “But when he started telling me about a feud between him and his son and that it was about money I realised who he was. He’s really got it in for his son you know. And that Susan, who he’s married to. They think they’re it, living in that big posh coach house in Bollingford.”

“Oh I remember Susan. She came to your Dad’s funeral didn’t she. Refused to grace us with her presence at the wake afterwards. Took off to the Royal with her cronies instead.”

“Yes, she always did think she was better than anyone else. But she came from just the same as us. She was always in competition with me. If I ever did anything she could always do it better, AND make a big noise about it. I remember how my grandmother was taken in by her. Thought she was the bees knees. But all I remember is her sticking her bottom in my face one day in my grandmother’s house. Just bent over and did it. I’ve never known such rudeness.”

“I’d have given her a kick up the pants,”said Geoff.

“She managed to take a lot of people in with her big ideas. I never ever met Mal, her husband. Apparently he rolled up at her house one night after his Dad had thrown him out, looking very much the worse for wear. Then that was it. He never left. Eventually they got married and had two kids, but she always had to be something special. Never could stick a job though. Always knew better than anyone else. She couldn’t stand not being the boss, so in the end she started her own business. Well, with him – Mal I mean. They diddled his Dad, Mr. Batty, out of a lot of money, and he’s never forgotten it. That was many years ago, but he’s still on the warpath. Can’t say I blame him though really. He’s not the only one. There are plenty of people after them who were persuaded to sink money into their many businesses. They all failed in the end. But somehow or other they always managed to come up smelling of roses. A right pair they are.”

“Hmmm,” said Geoff. “It’s weird how people like that always manage to keep going somehow. I’ve met a few like that in my time.”

“Yes, and her Dad’s grave, my Uncle, is up in the cemetery. She made a great song and dance about it when he died, but she never bothers with his grave now. It’s all unkempt. My Mum tried to tidy it up once, but it was a bit much for her and she gave up. And her Mum is in a Nursing Home now. Susan’s Mum that is. Alzheimers. Apparently she doesn’t recognise anyone. Can be violent too, at times. It’s such a sad story.”

“I wonder if she’s ever had anything to do with false legs” remarked Geoff.

“What do you mean?” asked Cheryl.

“Oh, I don’t know,” said Geoff. “Just a hunch.”

The Sunday Whirl

https://sundaywhirl.wordpress.com/2020/02/16/wordle-443/

The AIR was stale. He crept towards me SLYLY. I was too scared to MOVE. But he moved with EASE. I had LEFT my mobile in the car, and I was beginning to FEEL scared. It looked like BLOOD had been coming from his nose. I shifted to the SIDE hoping to LIMIT his chances. I didn’t move FAR and he began to TURN to face me full on. I realised then that all was LOST.

#FFE 16. Mr. Dibby and the Big Swede

Fandango’s February Expressions #16

Mr. Dibby thought he owned the road. The problem was that he lived next door to Babs and Gerry, who also thought that they owned the road. Both liked gardening. Babs liked her roses, whilst Mr. Dibby liked his vegetables. And, according to Babs, ladie’s knickers. Especially the ones that her grown up daughters wore. According to Babs he had a spy hole in his shed from which he perused the knickers on the washing line.

No one said much, however, and they all lived in peace and harmony for some years. Until the swede episode that was.

Mr. Dibby grew some enormous swedes. One day, in the garden, Babs took him up on his knicker watching activities.

“Don’t think I don’t know what you’re doing in there,” she said.

“What do you mean?” said Mr. Dibby. “I’ve got my model train set in there. Keeps it out of the way of my wife.”

“Yeah, but we all know about that spy hole that you’ve got. And we all know about your penchant for ladie’s knickers. Especially those of my daughters.”

“Who do you think you are?” said Mr. Dibby. “Accusing me of that.”

“Well all I’ve got to say is this – people who live in glass houses es shouldn’t throw stones. And people who play at toy trains in sheds shouldn’t peep at ladie’s knickers, otherwise they might get something in their eye.”

With that, Mr. Dibby lost his cool, and threw the biggest swede you ever did see at Babs. It hit her right in the face, and knocked her glasses onto the ground.

“Yeah, and people who wear glasses shouldn’t cast aspersions on their neighbour, especially when they’ve got a big swede in their hands!”

And for ever after, neither spoke to the other.

THE ICE OF WINTER

As the ice of winter breaks my heart
Releases its sadness encased for so long
Transformed it carries new life a new start
From joy I know I will never now part
In the warmth of summer my journey I’ll chart
As the ice of winter breaks my heart
Releases its sadness encased for so long

 

I LOOK TO THE STARS

I look to the stars that once filled me with light
In the darkness of lost love i feel for your hand
But now I am cold without love’s delight
I lie in the snow so pure and so white
Gone is my world and harsh is my plight
I look to the stars that once filled me with light
In the darkness of lost love I feel for your hand

PART 4 OF MURDER MYSTERY

“I wonder what Mr. Batty was doing scurrying past like that,” said Cheryl.

“Well he was certainly a man on a mission,” said Geoff.

“I don’t think he would have been too pleased at there being an artificial leg messing up the churchyard!” said Cheryl. “I wonder why the police were so interested in it?”

“Maybe they thought it had been attached to a body,” said Geoff.

“Hmmm,” said Cheryl thoughtfully. Her mind went back to her conversation with Mr. Batty, and his quips about bodies inside the church.  She shuddered.

Geoff pulled out of the car park and began the hour’s long drive home. It gave her plenty of time to think.

“You know, I’m not at all sure about Mr. Batty,” she said. “There really does seem to be something a bit menacing behind that smile. But I’m not going to worry about it now. Fancy all this happening though when I only went back to try and find my grandad’s grave. And I still haven’t contacted the vicar, but I don’t think this is the right moment, with false legs floating around the place and police cordons around part of the churchyard!”

“No,” said Geoff, “I think you’re right.”

“I wouldn’t mind going back tomorrow though, and having another natter with Janice. I fancy going and sitting on Horsefair Lane for a bit as well, where Apple Tree Cottage was where we lived when I was a kid. I can remember escaping from there one day, and getting right up to the main road. I was rescued by a passer by and taken back to my parents. That could have turned out nasty!”

“I guess things have changed a lot since you lived there,” remarked Geoff.

“Yes,” replied Cheryl. “It was nice then. Janice only used to live round the corner, and Mum often used to take me there. Janice was as fair as I was dark, and I was right envious of her. Her Dad grew tomatoes, and he always used to give Mum some. We weren’t very well off in those days, and he was trying to help.”

“It’s like everywhere though,” said Geoff. Modernisation, and the heart is ripped out of a place.”

“Yes,” said Cheryl. “They pulled down Apple Tree Cottage and a lot more places, to make way for a new estate. I know that it wasn’t very popular at the time with the locals. But some of the old streets are still there, especially around the old windmill. It’s like a labyrinth round there. Lots of little alleyways and snickets as well.”

“So we’ll come back in the morning then,” said Geoff. “They might have got a bit further with that artificial leg by then!”

“Yes, and they might have found the body that it was attached to,” laughed Cheryl.

Written For Sammi’s Weekend Writing Prompt

https://sammiscribbles.wordpress.com/2020/02/15/weekend-writing-prompt-144-sculpture/comment-page-1/#comment-9089

In the most beautiful place imaginable amongst the hills and rivers there it was, the “Sculpture Park.” The most unimaginable sculptures, all in white. It was good to have you with me, for I did not often see you. It was an incredible day, but you were to disappear again leaving me bereft. I looked at the photos and saw a scream. There it was, lying white on the ground. Pale.

PART 3 of MURDER MYSTERY

Upon hearing the announcement on the local news Janice exclaimed,

“I don’t know anybody round here who has an artificial leg!  But  there’s plenty who are legless on a Saturday night! You do know about Mr. Cattle don’t you.”

“Well I had heard tell about Mr, Cattle ending up in the wash dyke every Saturday night, complete with his hat on. He was there until morning. My Mum told me he was such a gentleman during thee week and always tipped his hat at the ladies. “Poor little Mrs, Cattle” my Mum always said.”

“Yes that’s it,” said Janice, “Always kept his hat in no matter what. Strange place to find an artificial leg though – the churchyard! Mind you, all sorts goes on in there. I’m never surprised at anything. You’ll have to meet the vicar. He’s a right one. He’s always getting Complaints made about him by the fuddy duddies but he’s alright. He’s always game for a joke. And he doesn’t mind climbing on the church roof either. Jack of all trades he is. The only thing he’s never mastered is the church clock. It has a mind of its own.”

“I’ll look forwards to meeting him then,” said Cheryl.  “I’ll give him a ring some time.”

“Well I’m off home now. I’ll keep my eyes open for somebody hopping about. Will you be back again soon?”

“Oh yes,” replied Cheryl. “You can’t get rid of me. You’re stuck with me now.”

“Well you know where I am. The bottom of my Mum’s garden. Let’s keep  in touch. It’s so good to see you after all this time.”

And with that, Janice was away.

“Who was that?” said Geoff. “She seems like a total whirlwind.”

“She’s good fun,” said Cheryl. “She used to come up to the farm a lot. We didn’t half get up to some tricks.”

“It’s a bit weird about that leg,” said Geoff. “But then I’ve always thought churchyards to be weird places. Never heard of anything like this though.”

“No,” said Cheryl. “I wonder what the vicar will have to say about it. Not to mention Mr. Batty. Nothing usually escapes him apparently. I don’t think he’ll take too kindly to an artificial leg messing up the churchyard.”

“Come on,” said Geoff. We’d better be getting home now. We’ll come back again tomorrow.”

As they drew out of the car park they saw Mr. Batty hurrying past.

MY RANT/VENT

Well this is my rant!

I don’t feel as bad as I did, but at the time, it really got to me.

We went to a shopping mall where there is a small branch of a foodstore that is easy for my Carer/husband to get round. It is not too large, and you can park close ti it. Well, you can if you don’t get accosted by Security. It is very hard for him to get to normal Supermarkets because usually the disabled parking lots are a bit away from the store, and you have to cross a road to get to the store. Well, by that I mean ankind of a road within the car park. Usually the disabled parking bays are taken up anyway, so we have to go away again.

Anyway, today we rolled up at this store in the shopping mall and my Carer/husband parked in a bay in front of the store that was free. He was only a few minutes gone, but when he got back he was accosted by a Security man saying he should not have parked there. It was a Parent and Child bay. In the past we had been told that if a Parent and Child bay was free we could go in it. But oh no – not for this guy. He caused a scene, and onlookers were looking at us as if we were scum. We were the lowest of the low. We explained that I am blind and wheelchair bound, and that my Carer/husband cannot walk far, or for very long. He walks on crutches and is verycwobbly and can fall.  Getting around the store in a wheelchair is nigh on impossible. But he was only five minutes. He only went in to buy a couple of items for our meal. But we were made out to be disgusting people. There were plenty of Parent and Child bays left. And we HAD been told in the past to use them.

The manner in which this was approached left me in tears.

It was the sheer lack of compassion that got to me, because we gad struggled elsewhere ti fund a spot in which to park.

I ended up shouting at the man and everyone else listening, “We do have to eat you know.”

This is just one occasion and there have been many more.

Sometimes we feel that we are just scum. It gets to me at times because we have to fight so much just to live. It becomes si exhausting and often we just feel like giving up.

Anyway, that’s my rant!

NOT ME NOT ME

Caught up in consuming crying
I left your territory

Here with intent I came my desire
Simply to be just as you be

But I was different weak
In a way that you did not like

Perhaps I reminded you of what
You could one day be

Now strong you live your life
With ease compared to me

One day you too may be
The weakest one needing help

Your brain freezes your heart flutters
Oh no, not me, not me

 

RANT I LATER

I am probably going to have a rant later but know that I could be accused of having a victim mentality.  But today has just been so horrible with no mercy in it and all because we are disabled.  There is actually such a thing as disabled bashing.  We had it today I. Spades.  I could cry.  So I might vent.  You don’t have to read it if you don’t want to but life BBC as people with multiple disabilities can be crushing.  Do, laters xx

HORRIBLE DAY

Today has been utterly horrible.  We have been trying to park to buy some food but got attacked wherever we went because they did not want us parking there.  We were no trouble to anybody but yet we were unfairly attacked.  I just feel raw, vulnerable, gutted nd at the end of my teher.  All we are trying to do is live.

Fandango’s Friday Flashback

Fandango’s Friday Flashback — February 14

Fading
Flaming passions
Time spent in memories
Of brighter things in olden times
Childhood
Joys lived
As I sat under the rowan
Linking with all the souls
Who rested there
May I

Rest too
Held in the joys
That made me who I am
Though now I live in darker times
Holding
Mem’ries
As darkness takes me into dawn
Beyond this sphere in time
May the new world
Come soon

PART 2 NEW MURDER MYSTERY

Cheryl sat outside the church door in her wheelchair feeling mystified. The whistling that she had heard inside the church had been quite distinct, and it was not your normal whistling. It was quite accomplished. Very tuneful and obviously well practised. A very sweet sound. She looked all around her to see if there was any place the whistler could have disappeared to, but all she could see was a gate at the very end of the churchyard, but it would have been almost impossible to get to it as everything was overgrown and it was rather like a jungle down there. It was a mystery.

Cheryl, her mind still on the anonymous whistler, set off down the wobbly, uneven path that led to the main gates of the churchyard. Up against the west wall of the church were gravestones bearing names that she recognised from the past. Suddenly, she jumped as someone tapped her on the shoulder.

“It’s you isn’t it! It IS you!” Startled, Cheryl turned and was confronted by a shock of fair curly hair, such that the face was almost not visible. Immediately she knew who it was.

“JANICE,” she exclaimed excitedly. Suddenly, arms went around her and a kiss landed on her cheek.

“What are you doing here?” inquired Janice, incredulously.

“Looking for my grandfather’s grave,” replied Cheryl. “I’ve just been inside the church, narrowly escaping the bat droppings. I hate bats. I once stood on one when I was a little girl, and it made my foot go real queer. Grandma told me to get away from it dead quick.”

“Oh yes, the bats. You can see them come flying out of the church tower at dusk. You’re not allowed to touch them you know. And if you find a dead one you have to report it and get someone in authority to come and remove it. It’s a right palaver because there’s often been a dead one in there.”

“Ugh,” Cheryl shuddered. “I’m glad I didn’t find one. It’s creepy enough having all those bodies in the graveyard. And then there’s the whistler.”

“Oh yes,” replied Janice. “I’ve heard it too. Never found out who it was though. Are you on your own?”

“No,” replied Cheryl. “Geoff’s waiting for me in the car down there.”

As she pointed her hand down the road she spied Mr. Batty in the car park of the parish hall officiously picking up litter. Not even the minutest scrap escaped his attention.

“Oh there’s Mr. Batty,” remarked Cheryl. “I’ve just met him. He gave me a right story about his son who diddled him out of a lot money. Right bitter he was.”

“Yes,” said Janice. “Everyone knows about that. And my hubby says that loads of people round about are after him as he’s diddled a lot of people out of a lot of money.”

“Oh crikey,” said Cheryl. We’d better watch it then. Not that we’ve got much money anyway.”

“No,” said Janice emphatically. “Neither have we. But there’s a lot of rich farmers round here who are on the warpath. Fit to bust, they are. I wouldn’t like to be him around here on a dark night.”

Suddenly, Mr.Batty noticed them and gave a cheery wave. Both of them waved back.

“You’ve got to watch him,” whispered Janice. “He can turn a bit nasty when he wants to. He hides a lot behind that smile. He thinks he owns the village with that policeman act. Woe betide anyone he sees dropping a bit of  litter.”

“We’re just off down the road to the ice cream parlour for a bit of lunch,” announced Cheryl. “Want to come with us?”

“Ooh yes,” replied Janice. “It’s so good to see you again. We can have a good old natter”

“I’ll just tell Geoff,” said Cheryl. “We’ll make our way down there together. No point in him loading up my wheelchair into the car for that short distance. He can meet us there.”

As they processed down the street, Janice  told Cheryl about the ice cream parlour.

Continue reading “PART 2 NEW MURDER MYSTERY”

THE WEEKLY TERRIBLE POETRY CONTEST

 

https://chelseaannowens.com/category/terrible-poetry-contest/

My first love sent me a note in Maths
“I love you” it said as I studied my graphs
He had bright ginger hair that stood out in a crowd
But the problem was that he was really quite loud
I never had known the sweet taste of a kiss
Nor ever when cuddling the feeling of bliss
Our love petered out it didn’t last long
Cos the Maths class soon ended to the sound of a gong

 

#3TC144

What the hell’s  that guy doing? “ asked Brenda.
“How am I supposed to know!” said Joe.
“Well you always reckon you know everything,” quipped Brenda.
“Look, he’s looking into that big hole.  What do you think’s in there?”
“Could be anything,” said Joe.
“A body?” asked Brenda.
“Why do you think everything’s a body?”  asked Joe.
“I dunno,” said Brenda,  “I suppose it’s what comes of writing murder mysteries.”
“Hmmm,” said Joe.  “You’ve got a one track mind.  Come on, let’s go home.”

I DO NOT CLAIM

I do not claim
To hold a knowledge
Greater than yours
Or to hold a title
Written in gilded letters
I do not claim
To be a person of learning
Higher than yours
But just to be
A person broken by life
Tested in the fires
Seeing in a new way
The way of the heart
Sometimes together
Sometimes not
But always
Grounded in love

PART 1 OF NEW MURDER STORY.

“You new around here?”

Cheryl was making her way in her wheelchair along the decidedly rough, uneven path that led to the church door. Suddenly a man appeared, walking towards her. He had a smile on his face but he had a bit of an air of the village policeman about him. Despite the smile, Cheryl felt that there was an edge to him, and that he wasn’t someone to be crossed.

“Well, kind of,” she replied. “I was born here, though I’ve been away for a long time.”

“Oh. I live down at the Grislys,” he said. “Look at all this flaming litter. I come and pick it up every day. It’s amazing what you find amongst it. Least said the better. Have you come looking for somebody?”

“Well not really,” said Cheryl. “Though my grandfather’s grave is somewhere in here. I thought I might try and find it. If you call that looking for somebody.”

“Dead or alive, they’re all the same to me. Oh, I’m Mr. Batty,” he said.

“Cheryl. I’m Cheryl,” she said.

“Used to live up the lane that goes out of the village,” he said. “But it got a bit much being right out there after I’d had my heart attack. So now they’ve got to put up with me in the village. Have you met the vicar? Loves a good joke,  Oh, he LAUGHS,” said Mr. Batty. “He’s alright. Not stodgy like most of them.”

“No, I haven’t met him yet, but I suppose I will because I need a plan of the graveyard, and I’ve been told he’s got one.”

“Aye. He’ll have one,” said Mr. Batty. “It’s a right mess down there though. All overgrown. It’s about time they tidied that up. You going in the church?”

“Yes,” said Cheryl. “I thought I might have a little look around.”

“Well watch out for bodies,” said Mr. Batty.

“BODIES,” exclaimed Cheryl.

“Yes,” said Mr. Batty, with a chuckle. “Bats. Loads of them. They die in there you know. Often find a dead one on the floor. And that’s not all. They crap as well. Watch out if you go and sit on one of them pews.”

“Well I shan’t be doing that,” said Cheryl. I’m stuck in this thing.”

“I’m off then,” said Mr, Batty. “I might see you around.”

“You might,” said Cheryl. “I’m thinking of moving back here.”

“Well take care then,” said Mr. Batty. “And watch out for them bodies.”

Inside the church Cheryl shuddered. She didn’t like bats. It felt weird going around the church. This was where her Mum and Dad had got married, and where she had been baptised. It was a huge place, but now, by all accounts, they only got about eight or nine people at the fortnightly Service. Cheryl felt quite lost in it. It had a kind of a dead feel to it, which made her feel quite sad. At one time it would have been the hub of village life. That and the pub just down the road.

As she sat, she suddenly heard a whistling sound. Someone was walking down the path whistling most distinctively. It was a very melodious whistle.

She decided to leave, thinking she might meet up with whoever was whistling. But when she got outside there was no one there.

WITH YOU BESIDE ME

Here I lie with you
In the rubble of a life gone wrong
In the lush green fields I will find my rest
In the company of one who loves
Even in the valley of shadows
Beside the tinkling waters
That refresh my soul
In the parched desert of my life
Here flowers will bloom again
The thorn become the rose
Here I will sing again
The song of my youth
In this strange land
A foreigner now
With you beside me
Holding me close
The desert will bloom once again

BLAME?

Can the foot blame the shoe
Because it is not a foot
Can a ship blame the sails
Because they are not the ship
Can the arm blame the hand
Because it is not a hand
Can a tulip blame a daffodil
Because it is not a tulip
Can a rose blame a thorn
Because it is not a rose
Can a sighted person blame the blind
Because they cannot see
Can a person blame me
Because I am not them
No my friend
This cannot be

#FOWC. Riddle. Up the Apple Tree

FOWC with Fandango — Riddle

It was a RIDDLE. How was to get down out of this apple tree?

It wasn’t that I hadn’t been warned. Grandma had told me many times,

“Now don’t you go climbing that apple tree.”

So now, here I was – stuck!

What was I to do? If I called Grandma she’d give me a leathering. But it would get cold up here. And I was getting hungry. It was nearly tea time.

I looked around me and surveyed the countryside. It certainly looked amazing from up there. Especially to a seven year old.

But the vuew could not keep me going for ever. I was starting to get a bit scared. What if I never got down?

I began to wish I had never climbed the apple tree. But I couldn’t help it. It kind of called me!

The fear began to rise within me. Not to mention the hunger. I started to sniffle a bit, then whimper, then cry, then shout,

“Grandma, Grandma!”

Grandma came, looking severe.

“What did I tell you about that tree,” she said.

Instead of looking angry, she looked puzzled.

“Now how are we going to get you down?” She frowned.

“We’ll have to wait until your Uncle gets home.”

And so we did. And then Uncle apoeared with a big ladder. And he got me in his arms and carried me down.

Sent from my iPad

SAYING GOODBYE TO BIRDS

i cannot remember whether I have posted this piece before or not, but anyway I am posting it again because the cormorants have reappeared.

 

When I first started birdwatching, I did not know all the different birds, and what they were called. Of course, I knew the common ones, like sparrows, doves, pigeons, seagulls, and others. I knew about ospreys, but I did not know what they looked like, only that they were big. I also knew that at one time they were an endangered species, and that now, through the dedicated work of many people, there are now quite a few breeding pairs in the U.K. For some reason, even without knowing much about them, something drew me to them, and they seemed magical. It became my goal to actually see an osprey.

I heard that an osprey had been seen around a Reserve near to where we live, and it had been there for about a week. I determined that I would go there and attempt to see it. I did not hold out a lot of hope, but I still wanted to try.

When I got to the Reserve, I discovered a most magical place. I had to make my way to the hide, which was overlooking a large lake. As I walked, I found myself going through a most wonderful glade, just like the ones you read about in fairy stories. This beautiful grassy glade was enclosed, surrounded by trees, and natural plants of all kinds. There were toadstools – bright red with white spots on. And playing in the grass were rabbits. I thought I was in heaven!

I carried on down the path, until I came to the hide – this was the very first time I had been into a bird hide. As I walked in and sat down on the bench, I looked out at the lake, and there, right in front of me were two huge birds, on a log , facing me, with their wings wide open, as if in welcome. My heart stirred. Were these the ospreys? I had no idea at all. All that I knew was that these big and impressive looking birds were opening their wings, that seemed to me like arms, in welcome. They remained there for quite some time and I was entranced. In fact the whole day was entrancing. I truly thought that I was in heaven.

I left that bird hide, knowing not what I had seen, but with a warm glow. Later, I discovered that these birds had been cormorants, and that they had been opening their wings in that manner to dry them out. They were not the most popular of birds, but popular or not, they welcomed me or so I thought, to he world of birds. I never forgot them, and as I continued to watch birds, I always felt a thrill when I saw them. I found them fascinating.

When I became very ill, my husband and I were driving one day, along the isolated riverbank road, and there, right at the top of an electricity pylon were – cormorants. There were five or six of them. There they were, sitting, like sentries almost, looking out over the countryside from a great height. They felt like my friends, but I was too sick to really take it all in. We went by that pylon many times, until I was too sick to go out at all , and most days they were there.

Recently, we have been by that pylon again, and the memory of those wonderful birds came back, and once again I felt that thrill within me. But the thrill was tinged with sadness and grief, because I cannot see even the pylon any more. I said “Goodbye” to the birds in that moment, and grieved within. I was saying “Goodbye” to my friends. My friends who had welcomed me, or so it seemed, into the world of birds. It was a bittersweet moment. A wonderful memory that I will bring to mind often. A memory that will, despite the grief, bring me much joy for having known those birds.

In a way, despite not being able to see, I still have them with me, for they are in my heart.

BURNING LIGHT

Burn on
My flame my light
In deepest dark burn on
Hidden in the secret place
Where no one treads or sees
Burn on though all is lost
I search for you
I yearn for you
Though swallowed up
By darkest holes
Burn on
Take me back to your shining
Oh take me back
Singe my heart
My dying heart
And bring me back to life
Burn now pure flame
Burn on
Through loss and grief
And body’s pain
And guide me through the dark

SPRING IS COMING

We went again to the wild wild place
By the river in evening sun
Where graves lit up in that orb’s embrace
Knowing that day would soon be done

By the river in evening sun
We watched the sheep in the lush green field
Knowing the day would soon be done
That good and bad their effects would yield

We watched the sheep in the evening sun
Back again from their winter’s home
Good and bad their effect will yeild
The sheep oblivious freely roam

Back again from their winter’s home
Bearing life from lambs within
The sheep oblivious freely roam
Spring is coming new joys to bring

 

SAT IN THE GRAVEYARD

Sat in the graveyard where you lay
The grass was green that summer’s day
I looked to see if She was there
The One who was the Lady fair
But where She was I could not say

In years long gone She went away
For her return you soft did pray
Her absence you could hardly bear
Sat in the graveyard

I wondered if I called She may
Appear again for aye to stay
So you could rest without a care
No matter if the world did stare
Perhaps She’d come if I did pray
Sat in the graveyard

iN THIS DARK LANE

In this dark lane I greet my past
Looking at the sky so vast
Just as when I was a child
So innocent and undefiled
‘Twixt stars and sky such great contrast

To the sky again my eyes I cast
Such memories will always last
By the stars I was beguiled
In this dark lane

So many stars there were, amassed
It seems my childhood went so fast
Here again out in the wild
Where Love it seemed upon me smiled
Again my soul such glory grasps
In this dark lane

LOST WORLDS

Visit
With me lost worlds
That still speak through the gloom
Nature in all its wonder clangs
Chatters
Loudly
What is it saying now to me?
That the sun still shines bright
Warming me while
Birds call

Do you
Hear nature call?
It says so much to me
For I am learning its language
You too
Can learn
This world of sound, the wind blowing,
Brooks singing for joy, I
Know this pure joy
Of sound

#FOWC. Sketchy LAST INSTALLMENT. A VISIT TO GEORGE

FOWC with Fandango — Sketchy

Two days after her meeting with Cynthia in the Wheatsheaf Jenny turned the television on. The local News contained a statement by the police They were no longer looking for the murderer of Sarah.

Jenny immediately telephoned Cynthia.

“Have you heard the News?” she asked.

“Yes, replied Cynthia. And I’ve seen Monica too. They’ve arrested Jill.”

“JILL!” exclaimed Jenny. “Yes,” said Cynthia. “And George has had a complete breakdown. He’s being cared for at the vicarage.”

Jenny felt a rush of sympathy for George. He had in many ways shown real affection for her, despite being a complete rogue. She had been used and abused by him, but she felt she understood him, and he hadn’t had the best start in life. Learning to smile from the dog spoke a million words. And the losing of everything when the bailiffs came to his home was tragic. In fact, his whole childhood had been tragic. It didn’t make what he had done to her right, but it explained it at least to some degree.

“I must go and see him,” Jenny said to Cynthia. “Would you like to come with me?” She did not feel too confident about going alone, and Cynthia was the one whom George had turned to to talk when he needed a confidante.

“O.K. I will come,”replied Cynthia. “As long as the doctor says it is O.K.”

The story as announced on the television was quite SKETCHY as yet. But Jenny and Cynthia hoped to find out more.

“Let’s try and arrange it for tomorrow,” said Cynthia. “It will give George a bit of time to settle down. And he might be better able to talk by tomorrow.”

“O.K.” replied Jenny.

It was a beautiful day the next day, and George was sitting out in the garden. The garden that Jill had tended with such care. He had a faraway look in his eye, but he came to when Jenny and Cynthia sat down beside him.

Immediately he began to sob. All his barriers were down, and he blurted out the whole story, through huge gulps, his body shaking.

“It was Jill,” he sobbed. “I never knew she had it in her, but it was all my fault. I should never have had the affair with Sarah. And I should have seen what was going on between her and Hugh. She was insanely jealous of Sarah, and I should have realised more from the showdown that occurred. Hugh would have done anything for Jill, and he did. He murdered Sarah. I suppose he thought he would never be caught, but he was seen walking with Sarah late at night by the river. Then the note about the watery grave was found in his flat. Other things then began to present themselves. There was a coded letter in Hugh’s flat from Jill, which the police managed to decipher. It was talking about the planned murder. Afterwards though, Hugh was filled with horror and remorse at what he had done, and that, coupled with his own health problems and advancing years made him feel that life was not worth living. The police found the taxi driver who took him to the entrance to the reservoir. The taxi driver thought he was going to the nearby pub, but later in the night, Hugh must have made his way through the trees to the reservoir. He was found the next morning.”

“So was it you who put the postcard into the book telling me not to talk?” asked Jenny.

“Yes,” said George. “I realised what I had done in telling you that I had not yet moved to the town when the previous murder occurred, and with the case having been reopened, I was afraid that I might come under suspicion because of the lie. In fact, I had been visiting the town for a couple of years prior to the murder, and was having an affair with someone. I also realised that I had let out to you that I had the type of car that the police had said had been seen near to the murder scene, and I was scared. I didn’t commit the murder, but I know who did. It was confessed to me, but I was under the seal of the Confessional and could not say anything. My mind was in a whirl. I didn’t know what to do, but knew I could say nothing.”

“Oh, what a dilemma,” said Jenny. “That must have been awful.”

“It was,” said George. “But I think that that is about to resolve itself.”

“And what about me then?” asked Jenny. “Why did you do what you did to me?”

“I am about to retire,” said George, “and I wanted to go out on a high. I wanted to see if I could do what I had always wanted to do, and you already had a floundering marriage, and a non functioning family. I did genuinely care for you, and thought I could give you a better life. I thought that maybe my own family would adopt you, but my son was not up for it. I became very angry at one point because things were not working out, and I took it out on you that day I had the explosion in the kitchen.”

“Oh my God,” said Jenny. “What a story.”

“I never really loved Jill,” admitted George. “But I knew she would make a good vicar’s wife plus she had money. I never ever wanted to be poor again. And she did make a good vicar’s wife. But she craved love, and she realised that I didn’t truly love her. So she became deeply depressed. Then, when Hugh came along, well, that was it.”

There was a stunned silence as George finished his story. He picked up the bottle of wine on the garden table, and poured them all out a drink.

Jenny shuddered, realising that she could have been Jill and Hugh’s next victim had not Hugh committed suicide, and had she not had the sense to get out.  She sat and sipped at her wine in shock.

“Perhaps I will never get involved with vicars again,” she thought.

Eventually Jenny and Cynthia left, preparing to wait for the next announcement from the police about the murder that had taken place some years previously.

“Stay in touch,” said Cynthia to Jenny.

“Oh, you can be sure of that,”said Jenny.

END.

#FOWC. Scruples.JENNY AND CYNTHIA MEET MONICA

FOWC with Fandango — Scruples

As the police left, Jenny let out a huge sigh of relief. At last she had been able to unburden herself concerning the strange events at the vicarage. She no longer had any SCRUPLES about what she said. She owed nothing to anyone, and they certainly had had no scruples about her. She realised that to George she had just been a game to provide him with amusement. Indeed, it seemed to her that lufe in general at the vicarage was one huge game, with George as the ringmaster, in control of everybody. It was only now that he had started to break down as he began to lose control of people one by one. And never again would he see Sarah.

Jenny contacted Cynthia again to request a further meeting with her. She explained that she had spoken with the police and that she wanted to tell her about it. Besides, she and Cynthia were now becoming great friends, and they enjoyed each others company. They agreed to meet again that evening at the Wheatsheaf.

As Jenny and Cynthia settled down to a meal and a good chat, to their surprise they heard a familiar voice behind them. It was Monica, George and Jill’s cleaner. Monica suddenly saw them and came to speak to them. She told them how different life at the vicarage was now. George was definitely not himself, and was distracted most of the time, whilst Jill had suddenly come into her own. She seemed to have taken control, as George fell apart. Monica told Jenny and Cynthia that the police had been to the house, and that Jill had instructed her to thoroughly clean every room in the vicarage, including the tops of cupboards and wardrobes, and every accessible corner. Jill herself dug furiously in the garden, as if working off all her new found emotions. But added to that there was a very strange air about Jill. A sort of sense of satisfaction. Their son from the city had been over, and had remarked that it was nice see Jill looking less subdued. He had never had much sympathy for George anyway, because of the affair with Sarah, and didn’t care too much that he was falling apart. He felt certain that George had been the cause of his mother’s depression.

Monica was full of it all, but Jenny and Cynthia were glad to hear what was happening at the vicarage. After giving them all the gossip, Monica left with her husband, waving them a cheery goodbye.

Jenny and Cynthia agreed that it was odd that George was falling apart so much, yet in some ways it was not. It had often been hard to tell who was controlling who in the relationship between him and Sarah. But one thing was for sure, he needed Sarah. And now she was gone.

As Jenny told Cynthia all that had happened with the police, Cynthia felt glad that Jenny had been able to tell them everything. All they could do now was wait.

And they didn’t have to wait long!

MY BELOVED CAME TO ME

Sitting in the sacred place
Waiting for eternity
My Beloved came to me
He knelt and washed my feet

Waiting for eternity
My heart began to break
He knelt and washed my feet
And then I knew the truth

My heart began to break
As Love stooped down before me
And then I knew the truth
He understood my heart

As Love stooped down before me
Our souls became as one
He understood my heart
I knew as I was known

Our souls became as one
United for eternity
I knew as I was known
The touching place was here

United for eternity
I knew I was secure
Sitting in the sacred place
Waiting for eternity

#FOWC. Prerogative Jenny Talks To the Police

FOWC with Fandango — Prerogative

Jenny trembled. She had gone through so much since meeting the vicar and his wife, and since the family death that had precipitated her and Matt’s move to this new place. Right the way through, there had been things that had troubled her, but in her grief stricken state she found her emotions swinging all over the place, and she wasn’t sure whether she could trust her own judgement. She had never had much contact with “the other half” before, and had no idea of how they lived. Yet she had been fascinated to find out. So many throwaway comments. So many innuendos. So many strange actions and behaviours. It certainly was not at all how she had expected a vicar and his wife to live. And as life at the vicarage unfolded, and she observed things, and indeed became part of it, she felt that she couldn’t quite believe it. Was all this real, or was it a game? The one thing she was now certain of was that she had not expected to be involved with murders and suicides. What she now had to tell the police seemed so strange, and yet so relevant. But she realised that the police might simply laugh at her or tell her she was wasting their time. She had no concrete evidence of anything, except the postcard that had fallen out of the book that George had returned to her in the post saying “Don’t talk.”

She dialled the number, her hands shaking. She knew that it was her PREROGATIVE whether she talked or not. Yet she felt that she had to. She could remain silent no longer.

Jenny explained to the female police officer on the other end of the phone what she wanted to talk about, and the police officer perked up immediately, promising to be round at Jenny’s house that afternoon. Jenny made her way home, and upon entering the door of her home, broke down and began to cry. What had happened to her? What had she got embroiled in? How could she have been so stupid? But then she realised that there is no knowing what grief will do, especially with a move to a completely new place and a husband who was never present. She half expected the police to cast her off as some stupid woman who was making up stories.

Eventually she calmed herself. But oh how she wished Matt was
here. She suddenly felt very angry with him for leaving her alone so much like this. So much for the new life that they had moved there to start. Her emotions were all mixed up. But she had to get herself together before the police arrived.

Soon, there was a knock at the door. Jenny answered and let them in. There were two of them. A man and a woman. Once in the living room they tried to put her at her ease.

“Don’t worry about anything. Just tell us what you know,” they said.

Jenny knew that they were trying to be kind, and to relax her so that they could get information out of her. But one of them had a laptop on their knee, and constantly flicked around on it as she was speaking. Though they were smiling, she sensed that this was a mask. Behind the mask was an air of skepticism. Until Jenny produced the note that had fallen out of the book that George had returned to her. At that point they asked Jenny to pop it into a plastic envelope. Suddenly they were very interested, and wanted to know if Jenny recognised the handwriting. Jenny said that she didn’t as it was written in capital letters.

“Do you understand the note?” asked the police woman. “Do you know what it is that someone doesn’t want you to talk about?” She was trying to gently coax Jenny, who was beginning to become rather agitated.

“There are a lot of things that someone maybe wouldn’t want me to talk about,” replied Jenny. “But there is one thing in particular.”

Jenny looked down at the floor as if uncertain.

“Please tell us what it is Mrs. Hill.”

“Well,” said Jenny.”When I first met George, the vicar, the whole town was talking about that murder case from some years ago that you had reopened. I just happened to ask him if he had been living in the town at the time, and he said that he hadn’t, but then I found out later that he had.”

The police woman looked straight at Jenny.

“Please, Mrs. Hill, tell us some more. Please tell us all that happened at the vicarage in the time that you were there. There is nothing to fear. We want to know.”

Jenny took a deep breath, and began her story.