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Well Head Cottage – 3

Loud knocking on the back door took her from the living room, where she had been about to start work, into the kitchen. Doris Smart’s face was pressed close to the little pane of glass. Jean waved and unlocked the door. She stepped over the threshold, carrying a large shopping basket.

“I can let you have some eggs, I’ve got carrots and a cauli’, there are some nice baby sprouts. If you want a chicken, I can bring you one tomorrow. Didn’t want to bring it over just to ‘ave to take it back. There’s some spuds as well, nice they are.”

As she spoke Doris unloaded the bag, and piled the contents onto the draining board. Now she folded the basket over and placed it on the kitchen table. She turned to look at Jean. “I’m sorry Mrs Duncan. First, I’m sorry about your husband,” Jean smiled at her, acknowledgement of the courtesy, “And I’m sorry if you thought I was rude earlier. You weren’t to know, about the shop.”

“No, it’s such a shame. And the tea garden is closed as well?”

“Aye. It is. I couldn’t keep it going.” The bright eyes sparkled a moment but it was tears that lit them, not the laughter that had used to be so near the surface. “I’ll be honest Mrs Duncan, I’m struggling. It’s been a bad year. The B&B business finished. I had a few of them bad reviews on the internet, we were fighting back, answering the complaints that were all made up. Then somebody said they’d been bitten by fleas and bed bugs. Well, they weren’t, of course they weren’t, but what can you do. Mud sticks and the bookings dried up. A couple of my regulars still wanted to come but you can’t run a business with a couple of regulars. Then we lost some ewes. Out in the summer grazing, that just about broke my Ted. They’d been worried, dogs probably. It doesn’t matter how many signs you put up, how many notices in the shops and what have you, it still can happen. But this was bad, half a dozen several days on the run. Awful it was. Then we had the fire in the shop. We were out, at a wedding, just one night, but it meant nobody saw until it was too late. Destroyed all the stock, the fridges, everything. We were lucky that it didn’t burn down the whole farm, but the shop was finished. I tried to claim, but I’d got the insurance wrong. It had grown from a little stall you see, and I didn’t realise. A separate venture they called it. I suppose they were right but it meant I got nothing.

A fox got in the hen house one night. Leastways that’s what we think happened. It could have been vandals, but we don’t have much of that up here. Anyway, the chickens were dead, most of ‘em. Locked ‘em up night times to keep ‘em safe, and look where it got me. Oh, it was just one thing after another. Then…” The woman paused, struggling for control. Jean’s instinct was to throw her arms around the thin shoulders but when she felt Doris tense and pull away she stepped back to the table. Doris coughed and continued. “My Ted is gone, Mrs Duncan.”

“Oh, Doris I am so sorry. When? Was he ill? An accident?” Doris was shaking her head.

“No, not dead, just gone. The trouble was too much for him. We were eating into our savings, we couldn’t fight back. Not with everything coming at once like that and,” She shrugged her shoulders, “He went off one day and didn’t come back.” She was crying openly now and when Jean pulled a chair from beside the table the other woman lowered herself slowly onto the seat, dragged a tissue from her pocket to wipe her eyes. She looked up at Jean, seemed to make a decision and continued. “I never would have thought he could do a thing like that. For hours I walked about looking for him. The police looked for him, they put notices in the shops, in the paper, even the local radio. But he were just gone. He’d taken the Land Rover and there was no sign of it, so they said it must have been deliberate. I still don’t believe it. I still keep waiting for him to come walking in. I can’t hold on much longer. When it starts to freeze I’ll have to get the flock in. When the spring comes, I can’t manage the lambing on my own, and I can’t afford help. I’m going to have to sell up, all of it. We had already let the big field go but now it’s the whole farm. But, if I do, what will he do when he comes back?” Jean was lost for words and so she sat beside Doris at the table. She took the other woman’s hand in hers.

“I’m so sorry. I had no idea. Diana didn’t say anything.”

Doris shook her head. “No, she hasn’t been up for a long time and I didn’t tell her. I didn’t want to risk losing this job. I need it. It’s only a bit but it’s regular.”

“Oh, I’m sure she wouldn’t have done that.”

“It’s hard to know what people will do, and I just couldn’t take the chance.

We thought we were okay, we didn’t need much. We didn’t have a mortgage but there were some loans, huh, show me a farmer without loans. Without the tourist trade we went down so quickly.” She flapped a hand in front of her. “Oh look, what am I bothering you with all this for. It’s not your business and you here on holiday. Ignore me. Do you want the chicken?”

The unexpected outpouring had left Jean struggling for how to respond. “Yes please. Is there anything I can do for you, Doris.?”

“No, there’s nothing anyone can do. I’m just trying to get by, day by day, you know? But, it can’t last much longer and then I’ll have to go and I’ll have let him down, Ted.”

“And you’ve no idea where he might have gone?” Though it was obvious all these questions had already been asked Jean felt compelled to go through the routine. It seemed the only way to show sympathy in the face of such a disaster. “I knew that it was hard for hill farmers but I am so sorry about all this.”

“Aye, well. I have to accept it and if I sell now, I’ll perhaps be able to buy a little place and then maybe, I’ll get work. I can’t think about it, I can’t see a way ahead, not properly. But we have to keep going don’t we. You lost your Jim, you have an understanding.”

“Yes, I did but it wasn’t like this. It was hard, yes it was horrible, but then my way ahead was relatively uncomplicated, there was insurance, well you know, all that stuff.”

“Yes, I can’t believe I could say this to you, Mrs Duncan, but there’s a bit of me that envies you that. Forgive me, I know that’s an awful thing to say but this… this is torment, and I don’t see any end to it. I can’t believe he would have done this to me without something terrible happening. I think he had a breakdown, lost his memory. I think he’s out there somewhere lost and on his own. It breaks my heart, and it’ll stay broken till he comes home. Well, now you know, and don’t you upset yourself. There’s nothing you can do, there nothing anyone can do. But please don’t tell Mrs Turnbull. I’ll not let her down, and when I go, I’ll make sure there’ll be someone to take over, but please don’t tell her.”

“Of course, I won’t, and please, Doris, if there is anything I can do, ever, just let me know. Here.” Jean pulled a sheet of paper from the shopping list pad on the wall and scribbled her contact details. “If ever I can help you in some way, call me.”

Doris took the piece of paper and dredged up a smile from the depths of her misery. “You’re a good woman, Mrs Duncan, thank you. I’ll bring a chicken tomorrow, you can pay me then. Cash if you would. Is your sister coming and that lovely boy?”

“Carl? I hope so, he’s at college now, so it will depend on his classes and suchlike.”

“College, good heavens. I remember when he was nothing but a little thing. Do you want giblets for the cat?” it was obvious now that the woman was trying to restore some equilibrium, was possibly embarrassed by the outpouring of grief. Jean respected and acknowledged the strength it took. She had been through similar situations herself when the emotion had ambushed her, suddenly and embarrassingly. She let go of the woman’s hand. Gave her back her dignity.

“No, thanks Doris. I left Slumpy at home, a neighbour is feeding him.”

“Aye well, it’s a precious thing that – having nice neighbours.” Doris shook her head gathered up her bag and, without another word, she stepped through the door and off down the path.

Jean turned to stare at the pile of vegetables beside the sink. What a dreadfully, sad conversation.,

Jean’s mind began to turn, scenarios started to play out in her head. She went through to the living room, opened her laptop, and began to type. Listing the facts, making short notes of ideas and inventing explanations. Lesley thought it ghoulish using real life events for her books, but they all started somewhere and often it was somewhere sad and tragic. She was always very careful that none of the characters were identifiable.

A sheep farmer walking away from his farm and his flock though, it was intriguing.

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A Quick Aside

Now available in paperback from Amazon

tangled-truth

twist-of-truth

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Happy everything

I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and the New Year brings all that is good and peaceful.

If I may I want to take the opportunity to link to my Amazon Author Page. Thank you to everyone who has bought my books in 2016 and especially to those who took the time to leave a review. I hope that for all of my author friends the coming year is successful and fulfilling and for all of our marvelous readers you find books to thrill, delight and satisfy you.

https://www.amazon.co.uk/-/e/B001KC8S2E

and now… …

Chapter 13

Fuzz had quickly overtaken Simon and sped on glancing down the side roads and alleys but when he reached the junction at the far side of the square he stopped and waited. “They’ve gone, I reckon they nipped down one a them ginnels.”

“Yeah, you’re right. What the hell was that about then? I mean why would they run away? She can’t have known we were looking for her. Shit.  Look, you carry on, do a coupla turns round the square, maybe even a street over on each side. I’ll go back into that office, where you saw her come out, and see if I can find out what she was doing.”

“Okay, then we’ll go and get some breakfast yeah?”

“What, oh you and your belly. I’ll see. Just go on. If you see her ring me and I’ll come straight out. If you do, try not to spook her again.” Fuzz turned away and jogged down the road at right angles to where they stood. Simon walked back to the office building and pushed through the heavy glass doors.

As he approached the reception desk the girl lifted her head and smiled at him. He saw her eyes lock on the disfigured side of his face but her smile didn’t waver. “Good morning, how can I help you?”

He introduced himself and then described Flora, as much as he could from the picture and the fleeting glimpse he’d had as the two girls had sped away from himself and Fuzz. He had the print in his pocket but surely it would look a bit odd were he to bring it out. “She was supposed to meet me this morning and I think I missed her. She was planning on popping in here first…”

“Oh yes. She left in a bit of a rush, knocked the table.” The girl waved a hand towards the centre of the space. “She seemed a bit upset. I was trying to make her an appointment with Mr Rowntree but he wasn’t free. I wonder, when you meet her, could you suggest she gives us a ring.” She slid a business card from the top of a small pile on the desk and held it out. “I felt bad but it was the morning meeting you see.”

“Yes, I’ll tell her. Is he free now, Mr Rowntree? Only I could do with a word.”

“I’m afraid not. What is it you need, investment advice, savings… …? Only Mr Jones is free and for general advice it might be better if you see him.”

“No, it was Mr Rowntree I needed. Any chance I could see him later?”

“What name is it?” he told her, “just hold on.” She poked at the buttons on the complicated telephone in front of her and as she spoke into her headset Simon turned to the door. He could see Fuzz on the far side of the square, leaning against a fence post. No luck there then. He sighed.

“Will eleven thirty be alright?”

“Yes. Lovely thank you, erm Rebecca.” As Simon leaned to read the badge pinned to her uniform jacket the girl blushed, he smiled at her. “You’ve been very helpful, thank you.”

“See you later Mr Fulton.”

As he jogged down steps to the pavement Fuzz crossed over to join him. “No, luck. They’ve vanished. ‘ow did you get on in there.”

“Yeah okay, I’ve got to go back later but at least I know who she was going to see. Okay, I’m going to ring Carol and let her know that at least we’ve seen Flora and she looked okay. Then we’ll get a drink and think about our next move.”

“Ace, there’s a café just down ‘ere, got pasties.”

Simon used his mobile on the way to the little coffee shop. “Hello, Carol. It’s Simon. I just thought you’d like to know that I think we saw Flora. She was with her friend. A skinny girl, short darkish hair.”

“Oh, I wonder who that was. Did you speak to her? Is she coming home?”

“No, we didn’t get a chance to speak I’m afraid. We will stay here a bit longer, in case she comes back.”

“Thanks so much, try and bring her home Mr Fulton, please.”

“I’ll do what I can. Just one other thing though, does the name,” he glanced at the card in his hand, “Alan Rowntree mean anything?”

“Alan, yes, he worked with Mark. One of his friends, the same office.”

“Ah, right. So, he’d be a friend of Flora as well I suppose.”

“Well, funny you should say that he wasn’t really. She didn’t like him. I don’t know why and they had to see each other now and then, socially you know. What has he to do with it though?”

“It might be nothing, don’t worry about it. Look, if you hear from her let me know, yeah. I’ll keep you up to date.”

“Thanks so much Mr Fulton, I’m impressed you found her so soon.”

He clicked off the call and followed Fuzz up to the counter where the boy was already pointing at pasties and cake. “Huh, she wouldn’t have been so impressed if she’d seen us careering up the bloody road and losing them would she.”

“Aye well, you don’t need to tell ‘er that bit do ya. D’ya want a pie or owt?”

“Yeah, go on why not. Then we get back out there and keep on looking until I have to go back to that office.”

“Great, can I ‘ave a bun an’ all.”

“Oh aright, make yourself sick why don’t you.”

“Grumpy sod.”

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Truth Series. Book 2/chapter 13

(Twist of Truth is available on Amazon – click the link in the side bar.)

Charles Clegg looked old. The life force that was so much a part of him had been subdued by drugs and confusion. He lay in a quiet room in the local private hospital. Once out of danger he had been transferred from the infirmary and was now well enough to have visitors. Simon dragged a chair up to the side of the bed, he was shocked at how ill the man looked.

There were large floral displays and cards on the window ledges and tables and the hospital smell was drowned by the heavy scent of lilies. It was over heated and in spite of the attempts at luxury, the old man was still lying in a hospital bed with wires and tubes attached to his bruised body. Subdued noise leaked into the room and it was all pretty depressing. Simon couldn’t see any point in staying. They had said Clegg was conscious but there was no indication that he was going to be able to talk and so, with a brief squeeze of the age spotted hand Simon stood and prepared to leave.

“Don’t go lad. I’ll be with you in a minute. Just give me a bit of a chance.” The voice was just above a whisper but the words were clear.

“I thought you were asleep.” Simon lowered back onto the seat.

“No, it’s the dizziness. I can’t see straight, it’s bloody awful.” His eyelids flicked open for a moment and Charles Clegg moved his head a little towards Simon.

“Don’t worry I can come back. When you’re feeling a bit stronger. It’s fine.” He was surprised at the strength in the hand that reached out and gripped his wrist.

“Wait. Just wait.” The old man forced his eyes open again and pointed at the glass of water on the bed table. Simon helped him to take a drink and then settle back against the pillows.

“Bloody drugs ‘ave me confused. I’d rather feel the ache in me leg to be ‘onest but they’ve got me in their clutches and they’ll do what they will. Bloody doctors.”

He lay now with his eyes closed but the slackness in his face had lessened. “Good of you to come lad. ‘ppreciate it.”

“I wondered if you remembered what happened?” Clegg groaned as he made the mistake of shaking his head, his concussed brain paid him back with pain and nausea. He breathed deeply and raised a finger to indicate that Simon must wait.

“I’d ‘ad a busy day, out and about and what not. I remember leaving the yard. I decided to drive over the top. I do quite often, usually mid-week, even though there are memories up there. It’s no good letting stuff like that dictate what you do. I don’t know much more than that. I remember that young lass, the one that helped. She clambered down to me, somehow opened the car door, called the police. Saved my life I expect. I’ll tell you sommat but you must promise not to say a word – right?”

“Erm, yes okay.”

“I didn’t ‘ave my belt on. Bloody belts, I ‘ate ‘em, always ‘ave and every now and again I just leave it off. If I’d not been such a stupid, stubborn old bugger I could ‘ave walked away from this. Well, serves me right. I were probably goin’ a bit quick truth be told. No point ‘avin’ a powerful motor if you don’t let it off it’s leash now and then.” He gave a throaty chuckle but it caused him to cough and Simon helped him to take another drink. “Bit of slide on corners you know, bit of a twitch in the rear, just for the ‘ell of it. Bit ‘o sharp brakin’, testin’ ‘er metal, you know? They’re sayin they think I fell asleep but that doesn’t feel right, not right at all.”

“No, not from what you’ve just been saying.”

“Aye, well I don’t want em pryin’ too much, crash investigatin’ and what ‘ave you, so I’ll let ‘em ‘ave their way and take the ‘it on the insurance. Serves me right and I’m paying for it now. But truth is I don’t remember anything properly, just flashes. I can see that girl, but it’s odd because sometimes it seems that maybe there were another one, ‘appen a woman, ‘appen not, but anyroad it’s all a fog. It’s just the drugs and my poor scrambled brain but… Let’s be ‘onest, I reckon they know, about the seat belt I mean, they can tell these things from bruises, stuff like that, but sometimes, well if you show folks an easy way out they’ll likely take it.” He flapped a hand weakly now against the bed covers. “It’s no good I’m befuddled. They reckon it might come clearer in time but right now I just don’t know what ‘appened. Been drivin’ for more than fifty year and only ever ‘ad one other accident – years ago when I were a daft kid.” Simon saw exhaustion and medicine take Charles Clegg away again. He left the little get well card on the table and walked quietly out of the room.

It would be useful to speak to the woman who had helped him. Maybe her name would be in the paper by now. He pulled out his phone and made a note to check.

So, the afternoon would be spent on the computer. This wasn’t quite as he had imagined it would be but the web was such a great source of information. He hadn’t been able to do anything about tracing the veterinary nurse though, he had spent hours well into the night bent over his desk.

When he phoned Gloria they decided the only route left open to them was to call all the local veterinary practices – “At least there are fewer than there are hairdressers.” Gloria had laughed and they had taken half of the listings each to work their way through, just calling and asking if Fiona Carpenter worked there. “You know they might start with the stupid privacy stuff don’t you.”

“Yes, I know but at least we’ll have tried.”

He called at the little convenience store and picked up a Lasagne ready meal for lunch and a six pack of lager. He was seeing Gloria for dinner but for now he liked the idea of getting on with what he was thinking more and more of as his job.

The shop front looked smarter with the new pane and he decided to have it painted. Now they were talking again he would speak to Gloria about making an offer to buy it. It would be much simpler having cleared his name and he would love to own his own place. He was settling and becoming attached to his home. It was a good feeling. He knew it would please his dad as well, so that was another plus.

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New Release

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https://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/B01M1K6Z52

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B01M1K6Z52

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The One With No Name

So, you remember that story that we had here that couldn’t decide what it wanted to be called.

Well it decided it wanted to be Twist of Truth and here it is all finished and polished and “out there”

Twist of Truth

 

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Poor Untitled thing – Nothing Had Changed

Chapter 20

Simon took a step towards the open door, trying to block her view as Gloria leaned to peer past him into the grim interior.  Stephen Hardcastle was slumped against the wall. “What the hell are you doing? How did you get in?”

“Down the back alley, the side gate. It doesn’t matter!”

“I didn’t know there was a back alley.”

She screeched at him, “I said it doesn’t bloody matter – What the hell is this?”

Simon turned his head to glance at the mess behind him, he didn’t know how to begin. In the time he took, Gloria reached out and picked up the butcher’s knife. “No, it’s okay, you don’t need to do that – really you don’t it’s okay.” Fear came from her in waves, fear and anger.

“Okay – how can this be okay?” She had taken several steps into the room by now and was an arm’s length away from where Simon stood, struggling for words.”

“It’s not as bad as it looks.” He stopped, he sounded ludicrous. He reached a hand towards her. She raised the knife. “Why are you here Gloria, why have you come?”

“You didn’t bring a coat, I watched you walk down the alley and then it began to rain. I brought a coat.” Tears filled her eyes as she spoke to him, she brushed them away with her free hand and glanced around. “You haven’t done anything. You haven’t decorated, where’s all the stuff that you ordered? It’s just the same.”

Any answer that he might make was negated by a bout of coughing from Stephen behind him. Gloria slid past, still holding the knife in front of her. She flicked her glance between the semi-conscious man sagging against the wall and Simon who raised his hands, palms towards her in helplessness and surrender.

She knelt now beside Hardcastle who appeared to be drifting in and out of consciousness. “Bloody hell, what happened to him?” She glanced up.  “He stinks, he’s shit himself. We need to get him to the hospital, we need an ambulance. What happened to his head? He’s got concussion or something.” She reached out to take Stephen’s hand and it was only then that she noticed the cuffs, the chains. “What the hell!” She pulled at them, jangling and shaking the metal links. “My God, what have you done? What the hell have you done?”

“I can explain, I can. I’ll tell you all about it. It’s not what you think.”

“How the hell do you know what I think – Christ even I don’t even know what I think! Who is this, who is this bloke?”

A faint whisper slipped between Stephen’s lips, “Help me, please. Don’t let him kill me, don’t leave me.”

“Shush, shush, it’s okay. Don’t worry I’m not leaving you. I’m going to get you an ambulance.”

“No. No don’t – just take me home. I’ll be okay if you just take me home.” Simon had moved forward to stand beside Gloria, she still gripped the big knife and raised it as she leaned back to peer up at him.

“I can explain Gloria. I was going to take him home. I just needed him to tell me first.”

“Tell you what?”

“Can we talk later? Look I’ll get him home now.”

“How?”

“What do you mean?”

“How are you going to get him home. Are you going to ring a taxi, are you going to take him on the bus? Look at the state of him.”

“I need a van, I was going to go and…”

“Ah, just going to go and get a van, and some poor sod was going to have his vehicle stolen.”

“Well, I hadn’t expected to be doing this now. Look I know it looks bad, shit it is bad, of course it is but let me try to explain.”

“Tommy, Tommy take me home – please.”

“He’s delirious, he doesn’t know who we are. We really need to get him to the hospital.”

“No, he’s not delirious. It’s me. I’m Tommy. They changed my name, when I came out.”

“Oh, oh okay. Yeah of course they did. So, you’re Tommy – Tommy Fulton or? …”

“Webb, I’m Tommy Webb.” He watched as she sifted through her memory, saw recognition dawn and listened as she whispered his name.

“Tommy Webb – Sandie Webb’s brother.” There was nothing for him to do now but to nod and give her space to let the knowledge sink in.

The silence stretched between them until it was broken by another groan from Hardcastle as he tried to push himself into a more comfortable position.

Gloria turned to him and then spun her head back towards Simon. She jagged the knife at him, go and stand over there. Go and stand in the corner. Does this thing,” She reached and jangled the chain, “have any keys or whatever, how do I get them off him.”

“I’ve got them, here let me.”

“Don’t try anything, I will slash you, just move slowly. Unfasten him.”

“It’s okay, honestly Gloria, it’s okay. I won’t hurt him. I won’t hurt you. I promise.”

“Unfasten him then. Unfasten him and then take those stinking clothes off him.

“Right, right. Okay.”

The job was nasty and difficult for them all but in the end Stephen was laid on top of the blankets with towels wrapped around him. The blood had been wiped from his face and though he still shook with tremors he was calm.

Simon kicked the wet and stinking clothes in towards the wall. “No, pick em up.”

“What?”

“Pick those up and stick em in that plastic bag.”

“There’s no need. I can sort them out later.”

“Either pick them up now or you’re going to have to sit in that mess.”

Simon shook his head, his face creased in puzzlement until Gloria’s plan became clear. “Sit in the…  No, look Gloria there’s no need. Honestly I promise I won’t hurt you, I won’t hurt him.”

She jagged the knife at him, “Move the mess and then sit down. Give me the keys for those things, what are they, shackles? Cuffs? Anyway it doesn’t matter, just give me the keys.” He held them out towards her.

“You don’t need to, really.” But as he spoke he kicked the things together and then, bundled them into a bag.

“Sit down.” He turned and began to speak again but as she stood before him, her legs braced and the knife held at arm’s length he just shook his head and lowered to the floor.

“Right, put those things on your feet.” He clicked on the shackles. She threw the key to him, “Lock them.”

“Gloria, please. Look I promise I’ll stay here, I won’t move unless you tell me to.” She stopped, began to take stock of the whole situation. She realised that leaning towards him and forcing his hands into the cuffs and then locking them afterwards was going to be too dangerous and probably impossible for her to achieve.

He saw confusion now in her eyes and the wrinkle of the skin on her brow. “Gloria, let me help you, let me help you get him home.” She glanced down at Stephen, the bulk of him, his semi-conscious state.

“Okay, okay.” My car is in the road. Where is the key for this place?”

“It’s here in my pocket.” She held out her hand.

Her choices were limited but the main thing was to get help for the sick man. “I’m going to get the car.” She ran from the room now and the two men heard the locks thumping into place. Hardcastle whimpered, now that he was alone with Simon, the fear resurging.

“It’s alright Stephen, you’ve been bloody lucky. She’ll help you now.”

He could take her. He could hide behind the door and when she came back in, he could have her in a heartbeat but Simon sat on the floor and listened as her car rumbled into the yard. He waited until Gloria came back, holding the knife before her, a hammer from the car’s toolbox another weapon in her other hand.

She kicked open the door and let it bounce against the wall and only when she saw that he was still on the floor did she move into the room.

“Right let’s get him to the hospital. Help me take him to the car.”

“No, not the hospital. I don’t want to go to the hospital.” Hardcastle knew the hospital would involve the police and he obviously wanted to avoid it at all costs. “Take me home.”

“You can’t go home.” She turned her head, “Who is it, what’s his name?”

“Stephen, Stephen Hardcastle.”

“Look Stephen you can’t go home. Tell you what, why don’t I take you back to my place.”

“Yes, oh yes please.” He reached out and gripped her hand, he was obviously becoming stronger and at the end of the day it was his choice.

“Okay, come on let’s get you in the car. We’ll go back to my place. Come on Simon, give me a hand, but I’ve still got this, and I’ll use it.” She waved the knife in the air in front of her.

“It’s okay Gloria, I promise. It’s okay. I’ll help you now.”

 

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Free

Cover change nsn

 

“Samuel struggled through the roots and brambles; he tripped often and grovelled in the dark tearing his trousers on the thorns.  In time he reached the place, down on the bank, where the ground was damp and smelled of moss and decay.  At the base of a massive willow he threw his load to the ground and paused to catch his breath.

When he knew for sure that he was untracked he bent to the task.  The moon shone silver through dark branches as he turned the sod.  With each swing of the long-handled pick a grunt escaped his gut, deep and guttural in the quiet.  Muscles in his back and shoulders flexed and strained and he stopped often to wipe the dirty sweat that ran across his brow and stung his eyes.  He stood back occasionally to assess the work shaking his head at the small results of his efforts.

Though time was short he had to have it deep enough to deny access to the wild things.  The arc of the pick glinted as it caught the moonlight over and over and the ground opened a great maw that took him in further than his knees, further than his hips.  He was getting there.  Now he used the spade, the better to scoop the dank soil and toss it onto the growing heap.

A shrill note tore into the silence, sharp and shocking.  He thrust again with the blade and again the noise rang out assaulting the silence as metal struck stone.  He peered into the murk to see a boulder gleaming, bone white, like a half-erupted tooth in a blackened and decaying gum-line.

With a grunt of impatience he knelt in the soggy pit and groped at the boulder digging and pulling till his nails tore and his fingers bled.   The mud and the blood congealed clubbing the ends of his fingers and he wiped them on the tail of his shirt, cursing as the sticky gobbets smeared the sweat drenched fabric.”

 

Meet Samuel and peer into The Grave – Free on Amazon Kindle 

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Thank you Fran

Just a quick note to say that Chapter 68 has now had a bit of an edit thanks to some, really useful and honest comments from lovely

Fran Macilvey author of the book Trapped.

Thanks Fran.  I appreciate your input and constant support.
trapped

 

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Freebie

Leaving George has been having a lovely time giving itself away for free on Amazon.  So if you fancy a freebie, set in Cornwall with some peril and a couple of cuddly moments !!!! Don’t miss the chance. (It is available on all the Amazon platforms so this link is to .com but just stick in your own extension – phnar phnar -ooh missus)

Leaving George B Thriller

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