Wednesday, 30 September 2015

The Castle

Come on guys, hurry up! It was the middle of the school summer holidays and Jenny had taken the kids out for the day to visit a castle.

The children, who had been playing on the castle lawn ran towards her, smiling.

Jenny set out the picnic and they all sat in the bright summer sun, eating and talking about what they had seen.

Ben chatted about the dungeons. Mum, they were so dark and smelly and damp! I wouldn't want to have lived down there!

Jenny smiled and agreed, saying that she didn't think that anybody would want to live there out of choice.

Chloe told her Mum that she had been looking at the dresses in the big hall.

Mum, she said, I was looking at a really pretty dress and I saw a little slip of paper poking out, so I took it.

She reached into her pocket and pulled out the small piece of paper and handed it to her Mum.

Oh, it's a receipt from the castle restaurant, said Jenny.

She took the piece of paper and turned it over. Something is written on the back, she said.

She put on her glasses and peered at the writing. It's a phone number, she said! And a note saying how much the person had enjoyed their tea and chat yesterday.

Hmm, I wonder if we should ring it! It could be important.

The children clamoured. Yes, yes, go on, ring it!

Jenny dialled the number. An elderly man answered. She explained about the receipt and how her daughter had found it tucked into the dress.

The man laughed and explained.

He was a volunteer at the castle and every day, an elderly woman visited and always stopped and admired the dress.

He had admired her from a distance for quite some time, and they had met up the day before in the restaurant for a chat and a cup of tea.

He knew that she would be back, as usual today, so he had written his telephone number on the back of the receipt and tucked it into the dress that she so admired before he had left for the day.

Jenny smiled, thinking about how romantic the note was. She assured the man that she would put it back where Chloe had found it.

There, it was tucked back, safe and sound.

A short time later an elegant elderly woman walked into the hall. She stood admiring the dress. She saw the edge of the paper poking out, and curiously pulled it out.

She looked at the receipt, turned it over and read the back.

A smile formed on her lips. She put the slip of paper into her pocket and walked away.

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