She always felt a bit guilty when they knocked on her door, though. Their leading questions about the end times and the
"You'll be taken by ambulance to the hospital, dear," she'd say, "but they won't resuscitate you on account of your beliefs but your son Matthew will insist on you being cremated in spite of them. Then he'll scatter your ashes on the rose bed in the park, leave the church and move in with Timothy Moffat."
It never went down well.
Today, though, it wasn't the Jehovah's Witnesses but Jean Brampton from the WI, a parsimonious, tight-lipped woman who refused to be a patron of 'Madame de Pardo' but was happy to drop in and drop a question or two over a cup of morning coffee.
It's not like Beryl could turn her second sight off.
Sighing, she pulled her dressing gown around her and opened the front door. "Jean!" she said. "What an unwelcome surprise. Come in."
Jean wiped her shoes on the bristle mat. "I thought you only had to tell the truth when someone asked you a direct question," she said.
"That's right." Beryl led the way into the kitchen and began to fill the kettle. "But sometimes I'm truthful in my spare time, an' all."