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Saturday, 22 August 2009
Raven's Wordzzle Challenge #77
The Slumber Party Mystery
Chapter 24 – One More Question for Diana
Chapter 25 - More About Adam
To read previous episodes, click the label "SlumberPartyMystery" below this post. For the rules of the game, and for more stories, go to Raven's Nest.
Wordzzle 77 Mini Challenge:
class, calendar, keeping secrets, boring, fashion
Chapter 24 – One More Question for Diana
Glancing at a calendar on the kitchen wall in the General's house, Lieutentant Skittles suddenly realized that if today was Friday, tomorrow was Saturday. Before he left, Adam Challenge had said he would come down to the police station tomorrow. But the police station was not open on Saturdays. Skittles was pretty sure that the doctor was keeping secrets from him, his behaviour had been very suspicious. Maybe he had better make sure that the doctor did not try to leave town? But before he himself left this house, he wanted to ask Diana about something. He told Bumblebee about his intentions, and then found his way back through the corridor to the hall, and up the stairs to Diana's room. Her door was still open, and he found her sitting on her bed reading a fashion magazine, the very image of a spoiled upper class young lady. She looked up as Skittles entered, and put the magazine aside.
"So you are still here, lieutenant?" she said. "Don't you have anything better to do on a Friday evening? I thought I heard Adam's car leaving again a while ago. And William, too."
Skittles felt sure she had not only heard, but seen them both from her window.
"I will be off soon," he said, "but I have one more question for you. The doctor showed me an invitation card he had got for this evening. Who sent it?"
"I did," said Diana, without hesitation. "Or we. Evenings here can be pretty boring, so I asked grandpa if we couldn't invite Adam for supper. He likes the doctor, so he didn't mind. So I used one of his card's to write on."
"And why did you call it a slumber party?"
"Oh, that," said Diana. "Just a joke. Grandpa keeps nodding off half the time, Adam knows that. And then…" She gave Skittles a mocking smile. "Well, if he'd take it as an invitation to stay over night, that might have been fun. One way or the other. If he had wanted to stay, that would have been a development I honestly wouldn't mind. If he had been shocked, I would just have given him the grandpa-nodding-off explanation and looked innocent. I'm good at that," she added, with an expression to prove her words.
Skittles decided, for now, to keep to himself the doctor's opinion that the note might also be interpreted as a message from the General hinting that he intended to take his own life.
10 Word Challenge: blind panic, apartment, fleas, soap operas, cajun cooking, free and easy, legal, sangria, public school, new
Chapter 25 – More About Adam
Of course there had been no emergency call the second time he ran off from the General's house either. During the interview with Skittles, Adam had just pressed that button on his cell phone that adjusted the ringtone. Once again he had fled in blind panic from a situation he could not handle.
He unlocked the door to his house, and stepped inside. He went into the kitchen, opened the fridge, poured himself a glass of sangria and took it back with him to the living room. He wished he could turn back time. Instead of going to the General's house, he should just have stayed at home watching soap operas on TV. He wondered if he would ever get back to feeling free and easy again. It seemed unlikely.
His forced his thoughts once more back to the accident in Italy, years ago - the burning car, the death of his first wife. He had thought he would never get back to normal after that. There had also been a lot of questions to answer and legal business to sort out after Eve's death. First in Italy, then back in the States. But he had been very young. He got himself together, finished medical school, and then went to work among poor people in a big city. Closing his eyes, he could still bring back the shabby apartment buildings, the smell of cajun cooking, how he felt the first time he discovered his patients had fleas. And then he had met Linda, new teacher at the public school. They were passionate about the same things, and for a brief time, he had felt happy again. But then someone had set fire to the school where Linda worked, and she had died trying to save one of her pupils. Adam had arrived on the scene too late. He had seen the building burn, knowing Linda was inside, but had not been able to help. The police were sure the fire had been started by an arsonist, but they never found out who. Adam had not been able to bear the thought of staying in that city. He had moved on, and had eventually been able to open up his own practice, in a small quiet town.