By Beryl Bainbridge
In a distant cottage in Wales, city are spending their vacation with an idealistic proprietor and his protege. at the start every thing is idyllic, yet disaster lurks in the back of each tree, and because the vacation keeps their relationships begin to exhibit their cracks, culminating in a sad finale.
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He had wanted to flush the baby down the plug hole, fat legs kicking … going bell-tinkle … whose baby …? ’ he asked Joseph, suddenly looking up. ’ articulated Joseph, smiling. ’ The rocking chair thudded forward as George vacated it. ’ ‘Are you receiving telepathic information or something? ’ Joseph wagged his finger at George, not sure if his voice was sufficiently jocular. He didn’t want to upset George. Changing the subject he asked, as if interested, which he wasn’t, ‘Is his name really Balfour, George?
Joseph yawned, gripping the edges of his chair to lever his body upright. ’ I must try to be cheerful and off-hand, thought Dotty, her fingers still clasping her empty glass. Either that or I must pretend to be asleep. Order and growth, thought George, staring out into the dark field, thinking of his remembrance trees, his thousand memorials, each one named in memory of a Jew who had never reached the Promised Land. They moved in several directions to bed. Kidney was dispatched to the barn, taken to the door by lamplight and thrust inside.
How very obscene, but fascinating, I’m sure. ’ ‘Not with his hands,’ said George. ’ Gratefully Balfour echoed, ‘That’s right. ’ ‘It’s not very fascinating either,’ added George, swilling his wine round in the thick tumbler. ‘He’s been wanting to escape for years. ’ Oh God, blasphemed the inward Balfour, hating to be reminded of the better things. He drank his wine, not noticing the taste as much. ’ asked Joseph. ‘I-I don’t feel that I’m needed at all,’ said Balfour. ‘It’s Mr MacFarley that seems to think that.
Another Part of the Wood (Flamingo) by Beryl Bainbridge
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