Shallow Graves – Part 6

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I am still hard at work, trying to finish this crazy story!  I am getting near the final ‘scene’ and have written over 3 thousand words today, but I am not quite there yet…

I thought I would put a longer piece up to show that I have actually got something to show for my scribbled plans and tippy-tappy fingers, so here is part six!!

I will get the finished version up tomorrow, probably in PDF form, if it loads properly…but I will finish this story, at least in unedited form, before I go to bed!!! Argh!


I could see she’d been crying.  I never know what to say when women get all sappy, so I blurted out:  “I’m sorry, mum.  You’ve had it rough these past few weeks and I wish I could sort it for you”

She started properly crying then.  The big heaving kind of movie stuff.  I wondered whether to just leave her to her potatoes and make a quick getaway.

“Have you seen that two little kids found that girl?” she wailed.

“What girl?”

“Hailey.  The pretty blonde that was missing; just 4 years older than Mona.”

“Oh.  No, I hadn’t”

“Well they did.  At Mook Beach where we used to take you.  Remember?  Mona used to call it ‘Moon Beam’ after one of her My Little Ponies.”  Mum sniffed and wiped her nose right up her sleeve.  It was impressively disgusting for a woman who has nagged me all my life about that sort of thing.  I was glad she was going to be boiling those spuds before I had to eat them.  “Buried in a sand dune” she went on  “The poor kids will need counselling for the rest of their lives…you two used to love it there, and I always felt it was so safe…”

“Jeez”  I said, not quite sure where this was going.

Mum spun to face me properly.  “I questioned that silly little bitch Kelly!”  I didn’t like the way she was holding the vegetable knife.  “got her to finally tell me where Mona is.”

“Did she?!  Great!” I smiled, but soon figured out that this was not the right response.

Mum dived across to the kitchen table and threw the paper at me “Great?! GREAT?!  I’m worrying FOR A WHOLE WEEK that my daughter’s been murdered by some serial killer and  her mother wasn’t there to save her; then I find out she just swanned off somewhere?!  She going to WISH someone had finished her off when I get a hold of her!”


Fiona was right, I wasn’t supposed to be there and it did make me look extra-suspicious, I suppose, but I just… 

Fiona sat down beside me and told me she’d handed the tie into the police, asked them numerous (probably annoying) questions and done a few other things I wasn’t really listening to.  I was wearing my sunglasses, but I was sure she could see I’d been crying, because she fell blissfully silent after a while and just stared out over the field beyond Hailey’s garden with me.

We could hear the stream that ran just behind the garden fence and the bees in the lavender.  I really should have been doing something a lot more cheerful with my Tuesday off, and I definitely should have been steering well clear of Miss Unpredictable to my left. 

As if she could read my thoughts, Fiona said:  “Jeffrey…I just wanted to say I’m sorry about the other day.”

“Forget it”  I said, hoping to just hear water babbling again.

“I can’t!  I accused you of MURDER Jeffrey.  That was very wrong of me”

“You’ve apologised now though, so let’s just move on”

Fiona sighed.  “Look, it’s a lovely day – why don’t I take you out for lunch to make up for it?  I realise now that you were a gentleman with Hailey, but obviously cared about her very much.  You’re a good guy.  I feel terrible.”

I sighed again “there’s really no need.  But if it will put your mind at ease…” I hadn’t eaten much in the last two weeks, and the peace I usually found in Hailey’s garden was gone anyway.  Maybe if I had lunch with Fiona she’d leave me alone?  It was certainly worth a try.


Fiona picked a nice little cafe in the next town.  Apparently she and Hailey had gone there when Fiona had been between jobs and visiting for a few days. 

“I never saw you at Hailey’s,” I said.

“Yeah, we didn’t really get on as kids.  I stayed in a B&B instead of at Hailey’s.  Didn’t want her neighbours banging on the door wondering what all the noise was about at 3am after one of us had had a skinful and picked a fight!” Fiona slowly stirred her coffee, intently watching the spoon go round.  I imagine she was regretting that she wasn’t close with her only sister.

“Your mum must have loved separating you both!  Did she have to use the hose?  I was a bit like that with one of my brothers.  He’s very respectable now though, has well-behaved kids and everything…”  I stopped, suddenly thinking that may not have been a very tactful thing for me to have said. “Anyway, the menu looks good.”

“Yes,” smiled Fiona “can I recommend the club sandwich?  Oh, good lord…!”

I followed Fiona’s stare across the road to where a woman in her late forties was dragging another woman, who appeared to be in her late teens, down the front steps of the town hall.  By her hair.


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