Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
Oliver is eighteen and wants to enjoy himself before going to university. But this is the 1920s and he lives in Stilbourne, a small English country town where everyone knows what everyone else is getting up to, and where love, lust and rebellion are closely followed by revenge and embarrassment.
everted, mysterious smile, pert nose, glossy bob, knees motionless, she slid along, and as ever, bore the almost palpable aura of sex in the air round her. I watched her till she slid out of sight beyond the Town Hall. She was wrong, wrong, wrong; and so was I. I went back to my violin, to the extravagant oportamenti, and throaty vibrato of my gipsy music. So Evie disappeared; but it was years before I found out why. I was not the cause, though with a mixture of vanity and shame, I thought so.
examined carefully the immortelles which looked so inappropriately like part of a wedding cake. It was only when I examined the nearer surround—looked down, in fact, almost between my separated feet—that I grasped the true thoughtfulness of Henry’s tribute. Here were three words in small lettering. They were placed there at the foot with exactly his modest assurance, his sense of position, of who was entitled to do what. Sitting on the lichened tombstone, with white marble before me, I fell into
went very quiet. She began to cross-question me more and more fiercely until she was very angry indeed. I could not think what I had done wrong; and when at last she sent me off things were no better at home for my account of the meeting made my mother even more angry than Bounce. I never understood their two angers and it remained one of the unforeseeable perils of interplanetary travel. It was at this time that I noticed something in Bounce’s face that I was to watch intensify. I suppose an
stamp my foot!” My father looked over his cup. “What’s Henry Williams got?” “Everything he wants. He’s going to take over the shop her father left her—and the cottage next to it—and build a garage!” I reflected on this for a while. No more cannon fire; and in consequence, a full thirty times sixty times sixty. “Bounce’ll be pleased, at any rate.” My mother clattered the teacups testily. “You don’t know what you’re talking about. He’s using her own money to re-build her own property.
But Bounce had seen my feet. She looked up and up, till her eyes reached my face. Suddenly there was recognition in them. “It’s old Kummer! What are you waiting for? Start playing!” The next time I appeared with Mary’s tonic, hoping against hope to get past the music room and into the yard without meeting Bounce, I went through the hall on tiptoe, opened the door into the yard and stepped straight into a family hurricane. Mary was defending the scullery doorway and facing Bounce. Henry had