Tuesday, December 08, 2009

At the Waterman's Midwinter Party

Midwinter solstice was the night of the most lavish party in Laverstone, when the Manor was opened to all and sundry from the town – the only stipulation for entrance being that you had to have a Laverstone address to be admitted. This often led to several Henry Smiths attending the celebration, each one living at 14 Hazel Coppice. Harold didn't mind. Lies were, in effect, the family business.

Certain parts of the manor were out of bounds – the cellars, the upper floors and the kitchen area – but that didn't stop Hilary Sweet, junior reporter on the Laverstone Times, from investigating. She looked upon it as a public duty to get the inside scoop on the Watermans. Where did the vast fortune come from? How did they afford such an elaborate lifestyle on the takings of a small antiquarian bookshop and gallery? Just what was the relationship between Harold Waterman and the mysterious Jasfoup de Ville?

What she saw in the cellars turned her hair white overnight. She would never speak of it, but afterwards she quickly rose the head reported, editor, owner and finally mogul all in the space of three years. She developed a penchant for fine clothes, gourmet food and speciality lovers. Despite her white hair, she never aged a day after that night but died exactly ten years later on the night of Harold Waterman's Midwinter Birthday party, alone in a locked penthouse flat with a look of absolute terror contorting her features.

Jasfoup kept the pen.


stephanie said...

But of course she did (and J, too).

To all of it.

Lovely bit of Laverstone history. :)

aims said...

How incredibly intriguing!

Now I want to know what she saw of course. You know I do! I can't help myself....

Leatherdykeuk said...

Thank you both!

Aims - the clue to what she saw is there (in the last line)

aims said...

Yes - but - what is wrong with the pen to instill such horror?

Leatherdykeuk said...

not the pen -- jasfoup ;)