Friday, 13 March 2009

Story Time Continues

With no more ado, back to The Lucky Stone, after our intermission...

'Come now! I needs must get back to my work, much as I may like to stand about entertaining you two,' said Kate, after the children had thanked her for their open air story time by each giving her a big hug.
'Gosh, Kate, I forgot you weren't on holiday like us. Sorry! I hope you won't get into any trouble for staying long enough to tell that story?' Claire apologised.
'No, it'll be fine', replied Kate, straightening up from the pool with a dripping lobster firmly grasped in each hand. 'Though I nearly forgot these were what I came for!' and she trudged back up the beach with her strange cargo, accompanied by a child on each side, both intrigued by the slate coloured creatures that were so soon to miraculously change colour in the boiling water.

At the top of the beach, the children waved goodbye to Kate and the lobsters, then turned and wandered back, deep in conversation. 'Do you think that story Kate told us was true?' Tim asked his sister, who could be relied upon to answer all his questions.
'I should think most of it was - all except the mermaid.'
'But she only said the fisherman thought there was a mermaid in the cave, because of what sounded like music. Kate didn't say there really was one, did she?' Tim was proving how thoroughly he'd taken in every word of the narrative, despite the fact he'd been trailing his fingers in the lobster pool for most of its duration. 'Couldn't we go and have a look for ourselves?' The idea seeded in his mind, and once the words had been spoken, it positively flowered. 'Claire, we could, couldn't we? Look! The tide is way down the beach. If the cave is where Kate said, out on the point there, we could get to it easily now. Go on, let's!' He could tell his sister was wavering, and thinking an extra appeal to common sense would tip the the balance in his favour, he quickly added as an afterthought 'I'll run back up the steps and ask Mum and Dad if it's alright for us to go, shall I?'
'Go on then', said Claire, 'I'll wait here.'

Tim hurtled across the beach and back up the rough hewn steps that lead to their temporary home. According to Kate, it had been a customs and excise look-out station at one point of its existence. From Tim's tiny bedroom, at the top of the house, there was certainly an excellent harbour view through two windows set at right angles to each other in the thick, stone walls. It was also rumoured, those self same windows were often used for the benefit of local smugglers, rather than the opposing forces of law and order - but only reputedly so, of course!

Despite its possibly colourful past, it made an ideal holiday home. The large patio along the length of the cottage, provided a sheltered spot for sunbathing, which was exactly what Tim's parents were doing, as his mop of curls hove into view over the top of the garden wall.
'Mum, Dad! Can Claire and me go and search for the mermaid? Kate said there might be one', called Tim, not bothering to climb up to garden level, so his head gave the impression of a talking gargoyle.

His father, stretched out on a brightly patterned blanket, rolled over and sat up to answer him, as his mother raised her eyes from the book she was reading. 'That's fine, but set your watch alarm for half past twelve, so you'll be back in time for lunch.'

Tim was extremely proud of the digital watch he sported on his wrist. His uncle had sent it him for his last birthday, and to be asked to set the alarm was a big occasion. Normally, his parents threatened to confiscate it, if he dared set it one more time! Understandably, as a new acquisition, its loud beeps had sounded a little too frequently in the normally quiet Tennant household. Decidedly too much of a good thing, according to Tim's parents. They smiled knowingly at each other now, as Tim's fair head bobbed back down out of sight.

At the foot of the steps, Tim carefully set the alarm for twelve thirty. Unfortunately, in the excitement of the moment, not carefully enough; he failed to check the am / pm function and eventually ran back across the sand to his sister with the time 12.30am logged into the watch's memory.

***And that is your ration for today***


  1. Oh, this can't end well. Mermaids can be a nuisance, I remember from Peter Pan.

  2. am anxious to hear the rest. more please

  3. uh oh.......(I've taken up nailbiting now, for the first time in my life).....

    Hugs (no infectious kisses this time)

  4. This story reminds me of the serial "cliffhangers" the movie theaters used to show before the main feature. (back in the 1940's) These were what kept us coming back, week after week. Nicely done, Jinksy.

  5. Aaarrgghh! I have to wait for Monday for more!

    (You may publish between now and then, but I only access the internet here at work. Aaarrgghh!)

  6. I always knew digital timepieces were a bit dodgy. But maybe they make a good story!

  7. Little Tim! What's going to happen? You can't leave us here! Jenni

  8. can't leave us hanging with time to spare!

  9. Well, this is like those mini-series that take a 5-day break after part II!

  10. Dickens used to write in exactly the same episodic manner. Who knows! You may be the next Dickens!

  11. What do we have to do to increase the ration?
    Am enjoying the story.

  12. ohhhh i love dickens....great story...

  13. Just wanted to leave a small note... really enjoyed going through your blog.

  14. Uh oh. Does not sound good.


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