Wednesday, 20 May 2015

Excerpt from WATCHING YOU

Chapter One
“The Knave of Hearts, he stole those tarts.”
Angeline Hamilton studied the card with the picture of the white lilies on the front. The caption read: In your time of sorrow. Sighing, she placed it on the mantle next to all the others—regiment style. The condolence cards had been arriving for several days now. Most showed up by mail, but some were hand delivered today by the funeral guests themselves. Many of whom she hardly knew nor cared for.
Turning, a yellow envelope on the bureau caught her eye. That was odd, she hadn’t seen it there before. She picked it up. Who sent this one? The heavy print handwriting just said, ‘Miss Hamilton’. Quite formal then, possibly from someone else she hardly knew. The envelope wasn’t sealed, so it opened easily and she extracted the card. On the front was a picture of a white dove with the words With Deepest Sympathy embossed in gold lettering. She looked inside, taking a sharp intake of breath as she read the words:
Trembling, she held on to the bureau to steady herself, her knuckles white with fear. Why should anyone want to send her a card like this? She stared at it again as if by doing so the words would magically erase and change to something more appropriate like: Wishing you comfort in your time of sorrow, or some other good wish. Not this. Was the person who sent the card here in the house right now with the other guests? Had he or she been at the cemetery as her father’s coffin was lowered into the earth only hours before? And more importantly, perhaps, was he or she present at the reading of the will just afterwards?