Posted: 20 September 2006
Word Count: 498
Summary: My Excursion challenge attempt.
"My heavens, this used to be the Carrington Dining Rooms and Lounge Bar now it's a Starbucks."
Old Mrs Wilson leant on her great grand daughter's arm for support while she time traveled.
"We had our first date here you know. "
Karen smiled and made all the right noises.
"It was ever so posh, two table cloths on every table, a little pink one underneath and a white one on the top, linen of course, he ordered for me, broth followed by snapper I’ll never forget, we drank Rose wine, my first time."
Why me, thought Karen.
"I'm coming up Wednesday darling, meet me at Liverpool station and we'll spend the day together, I've worked it all out."
So bloody sprightly for her 84 years and here was Karen, the bloody tour guide, bored to death and a raging hang over charging at her skull like a miniature bull, angry, hungry and determined to destroy.
Nan's husband had passed away over twenty years ago and Nan had been in mourning ever since.
"Did I tell you Mr Hearnshaw popped his clogs last month? He was on my left two doors down; I went to the funeral, paid my respects, there were only a handful of us. "
Karen couldn't have been more bored, what was it with old people, why did death hold such an attraction?
"Poor old Florence died of liver cancer did I telly you, 60 years I'd known her, tut, tut."
Karen guided Nan to a wooden bench, stained with pigeon droppings and discarded pret et manger sandwich crumbs.
"He was such a good man dear, I hope you find yourself one like him."
Karen smiled weakly, imagining how shocked Nan would be if she knew the men she found leered over her and stuffed wads of notes down her diamante G string, let others search for love, Karen was looking for her mortgage to be paid off.
Nan dabbed her old eyes, eyes that had already seen too much.
"I'll never forget him luv, never."
"Well you got your photos Nan."
Nan took a deep breath and met her cynical great grand daughter's gaze.
“He was such a young lad.
Nan opened her purse and scrambled about for a mint.
“I only knew he'd fallen when I when I saw his name on a memorial in the library, Alfred Geoffrey Fletcher. “
"What?" Karen stared wide-eyed.
“I loved him you know girl, he was my soul mate.”
“Granddad?” asked Karen.
Nan shook her head; a sad smile crept across her mouth.
“When your great grand dad came back we started a family, you had to in them days, more than what poor Alfred got.
Just briefly, in a tiny moment trapped between reality and fantasy, Karen could have sworn she saw a happy, young girl with a thousand tomorrows to look forward to in the place where her Nan stood.
“We’ve all of us secrets my dear, some best shared, some kept forever.”
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