Tag Archives: mystery

“Somewhere in Cornwall…”

“Somewhere in Cornwall…”

LWG Prompt for 02.07.2019

Somewhere in Cornwall; not a specific place; but, within the confines of the Tamar River, the English Channel, and the Atlantic Ocean; or, to be similarly imprecise, somewhere within the triangulation of Torpoint, Bude, Land’s End and back to Torpoint, to finish the scalene triangle – a distance of some… if not many… many miles, and an area of quite a few square, and even more triangular, miles.

Anyway, some might say, if they were that way inclined, ‘Anywhere in Cornwall’, as that is all that really matters; be it at any point along the almost three-hundred miles of coast (296.2 miles to be exact – at the last count), or inland, at one of the drier places; upon the moor; or stuck in a traffic jam upon the A30 or A38 on any Bank Holiday.

As long as you are within the previously mentioned boundaries, you are going to be okay.

As to ‘your’ particular choice of location, that would depend on your pre-existing favourites (for myself, Looe, the beautifully charming fishing town; Polperro – Porthpyra In Cornish, meaning Pyra’s Cove; The Minack Theatre, hewn from the rock by Rowena Cade; Tintagel – of Arthurian legend; or the like) and choosing one of them; or heading off for a different castle, out on the wiley, windy Moor of Bodmin, or one of the many other amazing places that Cornwall has to offer.

“That was an advertisement on behalf of the Cornish Tourist Board ‘Kernow a’gas dynergh!’ Welcome to Cornwall.”

However, somewhere in Cornwall, there is a place that only I know of.

And how is it that only I know of it?

Well, I shall tell you…

many years ago, I was wandering along a leafy lane, close to where I lived at that time, when I found an old stone cross at the side of the road. Not that unusual, you might think, Cornwall has numerous stone crosses; however, this ‘was’ unusual in that it had never been there before, yet it looked as if it had always been there.

Upon that cross were written the words – in Latin – that roughly translated as ‘One day in a million I shall appear, to show you the way, then I shall disappear.’ My Degree in Latin – although non-existent – has always been a help to me at those times when a roughly incorrect Latin translation is required.

Back to the message – ‘The way to what?’ you might ask. And, even if you don’t, I shall answer you thus, as if you had.

I don’t know. I was flummoxed and a little non-plussed, my nom-de-guerre had become all guerre-de-nom, if not with a little confusion added on the side.

I sought help – which is highly believable, if you know me – and found it in the shape of one Professor Tremaine Penholder – there not being two of him – a Cornish institution (such as the Cornish County Asylum at Bodmin) with a wealth of experience under his belt, and a pocket-knife, in his pocket.

He showed me his pocket-knife, but was rather blunt (as wqs his pocket-knife) about my lack of interest in it. Then he asked me what I knew about fourteenth century peasants – I admitted to knowing little, then after he questioned me upon what I knew, I admitted to knowing nothing apart from when they were likely to have been present in history – he was rather impressed with this and offered me his help with my Cornish Conundrum.

“Nine letters, you say?” he asked. I nodded.

“And we only have thirty seconds in which to decipher the hidden word?”

I nodded again.

“Okay!” he announced. “Let’s just do this!”

SFX Countdown Music

As the music started the strangely hidden word appeared and we stared at it.

Less than thirty seconds later we had it.

“GoonHavern!” We both shouted – we were wrong, GoonHavern has ten letters.

After a further week of due consideration we realised that the word wasn’t ‘Penzance’ or ‘Tintagel’ but ‘Merrymeet’.

[MEETMRRYE]

The riddle was solved.

Well, that one was.

We then turned back to our task of deciphering the meaning of the translated-into-English-Latin-message that we had received from the illusory cross.

Tremaine poured over some ancient texts – trying to see who was sending them to him; eventually, I persuaded him to put his phone away and get on with the job in hand.

We soon (also, eventually) realised that somewhere in Cornwall there was also a Brigadoon- type place that appeared once every two thousand, three hundred and eighty-seven years for the space of a day.

The cross was a marker. And we had missed the date of the appearance of Trebrigadoon.

“Oh, well, maybe next time.” said Tremaine calmly. “I shall put the date in my diary.”

So, somewhere in Cornwall, in two-thousand, three hundred and eighty-seven years time…

A Murder Had Occurred – Part 4 of a June Marble story.

A Murder Had Occurred – Part 4 of a June Marble story.

Part 1 here.

Part 2 here.

Part 3 here.

This was the point where it was decided (by fate) that June Marble should be brought in. An elderly lady, of many, many years experience, June’s name was synonymous with crime detection – and also a certain month of the year.

June had lived in the tiny hamlet-village of St. Merrymeet and had had a hand in solving various murders; in the vicarage, library, at the local train station, and in a dozen stately homes within a radius of thirty miles – some of which were nautical miles. Her exploits were so famous that they had often been written into books – The June Marble Mysteries.

June arrived early – the 27th Of May, to be exact – and soon was up to speed with all the known details of ‘the second, more recent murder’ and the circumstances that may, or may not, have led to it.

A list was made by June, of all the people present at the story-telling meeting, and she started upon a series of interviews with them – choosing the order alphabetically.

Algernon Arbuthnot Andrews, unsurprisingly, was first to be seated nervously in front of June in the Interview Room at the library.

Algernon described in excessive detail to June the recent events and then recounted the events of the original meeting of nearly two years gone. June took a few notes, doodled the picture of a cat in the margin – not entirely irrelevant, she was later to explain.

Algernon referred to a series of notes that he had meticulously taken at both events. The notes were written in shorthand – one of Algernon’s talents;sadly, his deciphering of the shorthand notes was long and laborious. However, many details were given and June jotted down verbatim, and word for word, all that Algernon had to say.

We shall see what conclusions June comes to a little later on.

TBC

“Wanda!”

“Wanda!”

Whither shall I wander?

Is my life in vain?

I wonder whether Wanda

will ever want me –

Shall I ask her once again?

Wanda, will you have me?

Will you answer me my dear?

Why are you so cold? I ask –

one more log upon the fire –

Are you frigid with desire?

But, Wanda, will not waver

and, worse, she will not speak;

is it Wanda’s withered welcome

that makes me admit defeat?

Paddington to Penzance on the Night Train (carriage 1)


Paddington to Penzance on the Great Western for a precise eight hours and eight minutes – what more could anyone want?

Journeying South and West from our departure point – at a speed well above fifty miles per hour – left us feeling exhilarated; and the journey ahead was full with the promise of our travelling like an arrow to its Cornish destination – our adventures had begun.
Too excited to sleep, we began by listing ‘all’ the places we ‘had’ to visit, arranged in a largely alphabetical order; then we prioritised: firstly the castles, then the ‘recently found’ Lost Gardens of Heligan, Mousehole (always pronounce it ‘Mouzzle’), St. Ives, Perranporth, Polperro, Looe, ‘all’ the little ports; and, finally, the various ‘miscellany’ of places that we had only read (and dreamed) about in our literary wanderings.
“We must visit Carnglaze!” squeaked Cally.
“St. Michael’s Mount!” I proposed. “Rushing back across the causeway when it’s under a foot of water is an exhilarating dash to safety!” I’d never done it; but, it sounded like the sort of thing one has to do at least once in a lifetime.
We made another list of places to avoid – it was short, but there were still a few destinations that we didn’t want our steam train of an adventure to stop at. I won’t name them here for fear of upsetting the people of ‘N’ and ‘C’.
The train was passing stations young and old in a flurry of nameboards and waiting room cafés; we barely noted the names.
The train sped on into the night, unaware of the broken rail just outside of Newton Abbot.
In a couple of hours, our journey was going to be memorable for all the wrong reasons.

TBC – 

Please Read Pt. 2 next – thank you.

Happy Birthday, Agatha Christie


Author’s Note: I should have posted this today.
The mystery

Of Agatha Christie

And where she went

For those eleven days

Has never truly been explained.
It has been said

That she left her daughter in bed

And went to seek a truth.
But, the truth will out

Without a doubt…

But, there is nowt

That is known

Of where Agatha went.
When she returned

It couldn’t be learned

Of where she had been

Or what she had done.
It was Agatha Christie

With the Unknown Purpose

In the Morris Cowley

That did it;
But, what ‘it’ may have been…
Perhaps, we shall never know.
Well, we all like a good mystery.

The Tale of the Toll of the Bell

image

“That infuriating bell!”

It rang and rang and rang
After a while, the people got used to it
And it rang and rang and rang

After three weeks – exactly – it turned itself off
All by itself
Of its own accord

And the people noticed – it took them quite a few seconds; but, notice, they did, that the noise of the bell had stopped.

After a while, the people forgot about it.

An Explanation (Badriomaku #6)

image

It is
What it is
There is always that.
More?
There is nothing more
Just take my word
It’s all inclusive.

Tales from the Whom Household (A Work in Progress)

hash-tag dialogueforaplay

An Episode in the #dialogueforaplay series

Dr. P: Hello! I’m Doctor Proctor, Vector Inspector.

Maud: Really?

Dr. P: Yes. Don’t you believe me?

Maud: Well, it is a bit far-fetched.

Dr. P: I am an imminent physician!

Maud: Don’t you mean ’eminent?’

Dr. P: I might do. In time. Who is asking?

Maud: Whom?

Dr. P: Okay; ‘whom’ is asking?

Maud: No. I am Lady Whom, Lady Maud Whom. The last in a long line of Whoms.

Dr. P: Ah! Just the parsonage that I was looking for!

Maud: If you are looking for the Parsonage, it’s by the church – as is usual in these villages.

Dr. P: Sorry? I think you misunderstand, or misunderstood me. I was looking for Lady Whom.

Maud: You ‘was’ looking for her? Have you stopped looking for her now, young man?

Dr. P: I have. Seeing as how I has now found her whereabouts; which turned out to be hereabouts.

Maud: Or thereabouts!

Dr. P: Precisely! I was misdirected the wrong way by some youths on the traffic islands at the edge of the village.

Maud: Layabouts… on roundabouts.

Dr. P: In-deed!

Maud: And in fact, supposéd doctor.

Dr. P: I must speak with you.

Maud: Then we must stop this conversation immediately.

Dr. P: Or sooner.

Maud: Very well. (There is a short pause) About what would you speak to Lady Whom about?

Dr. P: Do you always speak of yourself in the third person?

Maud: Yes; I used to play cricket.

Dr. P: Ah! I see.

Narr: Though he clearly didn’t.

Dr. P: And who or ‘whom’ are you Sirrah?

Narr: I am the narrator to your conversation; I add a few details here and there to allow the listener (or the reader) to understand what is going on.

Dr. P: Why should they be akin to that knowledge when we so clearly are not?

Narr: It is the way of things in this sort of genre, Dr. Proctor.

Dr. P: Harrumph!

Maud: Yes. I can see that it may be a help to our audience; but, it is a bit unfair on us.

Narr: I have no free will in this, malady; my words have been written for me in advance.

Dr. P: What! Are we predestined to a destined destination?

Narr: Yes.

Maud: And we have to follow a path set out for us.

Narr: Yes.

Dr. P: Without any hope of ultimate salvation?

Narr: Yes.

Maud:

#dialogueforaplay – The Play Starts Here!

hash-tag dialogueforaplay

#dialogueforaplay (for Radio Show)
Cast (in order of appearance – smartest first!)
Narr 1
Narr 2
Narr 3
Narr 4
Harold
Laura
Dr 1
Dr Protocol
DC Acey

SFX Murder Mystery Music

Narrator 1: The ‘Toe-in-the-Water Radio Show’ is proud to present… The Lost Camel Theatre Group, who are proudly presenting…

Narrator 2: Act 1 Scene 1 of a 1 act, 1 scene play, cunningly entitled:

Narrator 3: A Murder Is Pronounced ‘Mur-derrr!’

Narrator 4: ‘or’

Narr 1: The Old Biddy in the Library

Narr 4: ‘or’

Narr 2: Death Comes Right at the Very End

Narr 4: Or… (There is a pause) No? (A shorter pause) Anyway, whatever it is called, it all begins, takes place, and ends in the living room of Whom Manor.

Narr 1: Which is ‘grammatically’ correct

Narr 2: if not at all relevant…

Narr 3: or particularly interesting

Narr 4: Act 1, Scene 1: The action starts, as I say, in an English Country House – Whom Manor.

SFX making drinks, with clinks etc.

Harold: We seem to be out of lemons!

Laura: Really?

Harold: Yes! I wanted ‘ice and a slice’ in my drink!

Laura: Oh, Harold! If you really need a lemon I can send out.

Harold: No, Laura- if a man wants something done properly he should just get on and do it.

Laura: Really? Harold…?

Harold: Yes, Laura, what is it, old bean?

Laura: Oh! Nothing, I’ll make you a drink.(aside) It will be your last!

Laura: (hands Harold a drink) Here you go. Bottoms up!

Harold: Thanks, old sausage! (takes a large swig) Aaaaaaargh!

Narr 4: Harold keels over, then dies.

Laura: A little concoction of mine – A very stiff drink – Gin with a side order of starch!

Narr 4: A man enters the scene

Doctor 1: You called for a doctor?

Laura: No.

Dr 1: I came anyway. Is this the stiff?

Laura: Yes…

Dr 1: He’s dead!

Laura: You ‘are’ a doctor!

Dr 1: I know! I went to Doctoring School for an absolute age. It was Hell!

Laura: What are we to do?

Dr 1: I think that we should call another doctor.

Laura: Protocol?

Dr 1: Yes! Dr. Protocol!

Narr 4: Another man arrives

Dr Protocol: You called?

Dr 1: We did.

Dr P: I am here. Is this the stiff?

Dr 1: No, that’s Laura!

Laura: (miffed) Excuse me. I am suffering with shock and trauma from the loss of a close one.

Dr P: How close?

Laura: I don’t know – I have no spatial awareness.

Dr 1: What? Should we call the police?

Dr P: The ‘Police!’

Narr 4: A ‘third’ Man arrives

DC Acey: I am the police.

Laura: I thought there would be more of you.

DC Acey: I’ve been dieting.

Dr 1: Can I be called Doctor 1 now? It’s all rather confusing.

Laura: Certainly, Doctor 1 – If that is your ‘real’ name!

DC Acey: And I am DC Acey – and no puns on that or I shall have to nick you; with this penknife!

Laura: Charming!

Dr 1: Can you provide a second opinion, Dr. Protocol?

Dr P: It usually takes longer, but I shall try… he’s dead!

DC Acey: Well done! Now, I must carry out some preliminary tasks. Firstly: Hello, hello, hello!

Omnes: Hello!

DC Acey: Is this the stiff?

Dr 1: No, that’s Laura!

Laura: Really!

DC Acey: Sorry, miss, if you’d move about a bit more.

Dr P: I can say nothing more… But, I can see no cause for the deceased’s death – apart from a lack of breathing!

Laura: Are you really a doctor?

DC Acey: No, Miss, I am a Detective Constable! These two, however…

Laura: Sorry!

Dr 1: Would a knife sticking into his back be… a clue to his probable death?

Dr P: Yes – is there one?

Dr 1: No.

Narr 4: There is a lull in the proceedings while everyone considers what has happened.

DC Acey: Ummm!

Laura: Don’t you have to draw around the body now?

DC Acey: Yes – that’s a plan!

Dr. 1: Should I call an ambulance?

DC Acey: You should, yes.

Dr 1: (trying to add to the tension) But, will I?

DC Acey: Yes, you will; stop being a prat!

Laura: Doctor?

Dr 1 and Dr P and DC Acey: Yes, Laura?

Laura: Dr Protocol?

DR P: Yes, Laura?

Laura: I’ve been getting these pains in my chest – would you like to take a look?

DC Acey: I’m not sure that is a good idea!

Dr P: Why not?

DC Acey: Because Laura is hiding a secret!

Laura: I am?

SFX Dramatic Music

Laura: Yes, it’s true! I have a deep, dark secret. Nobody has realised that I am not Laura, but…

Narr 4: To be continued!

SFX Murder Mystery Music

Narr 4: That was episode 1 of Act 1, Scene 1…

Narr 3: …of a 1 act, 1 scene play, entitled…

Narr 2: The Clue is in the Questioning…

Narr 4: Or…

Narr 1: Murder is only ‘Red Rum’ reversed.

Narr 4: Or…

SD (Gradually fades out)

Narr 3: Is this a dagger I see… in me?

Narr 4: Or…

Narr 2: Where there’s a will, there’s an alibi!

Narr 4: Or…

Narr 1: Ouch!

Music to End.

The Returning of Library Books

Mary CelesteThe-Bermuda-TriangleBiggles

Delilah Badger walked into the library.

Excuse me…!”

There was nobody in sight.

Is there anybody there?”

She waited for perhaps ten seconds (actually seven) and repeated her query, but with an emphasis on the word ‘anybody.’

Is there ‘anybody’ there?”

Nothing.

Delilah walked over to the ‘Staff Only’ sign-encumbered door and knocked briskly three times upon its imposing façade.

The door could have been the entrance to an Egyptian tomb; it was as solid as a cliff face – and particularly uninviting.

Delilah tried the door handle. It turned. She pushed. It gave. Then swung open with all the grace and style of a ballerina (supposedly to allow a book-toting librarian easy access). Delilah entered the room beyond.

There was a sturdy Librarian’s mug on the coffee table, with steam curling up decorously from within it; a side-plate, with a partially eaten Rich Tea biscuit upon it, to the side. For a library staff room – it was certainly lacking something – librarians, for a start.

Having ascertained that there were no exits from here, Delilah returned to the main library itself. Still nobody in sight.

Is there ‘ANYBODY’ at all, of any shape or size, in this LIBRARY!” shouted Delilah, flagrantly ignoring the ‘SILENCE’ signs that were dotted every six feet along the walls; being presided over by the master of the ‘SILENCE’ sign, located above the main desk; which had daubed upon the hanging sign, letters twelve inches high ‘quoting the inimitable: ‘SILENCE, Please!’

Delilah sighed; popped her bag open and took out the three books from within. She placed them upon the counter. They sat there, silently – well behaved books, they were.

Delilah wrote a quick note upon an ‘overdue’ slip of paper and popped it into the front of the top book; which, ironically, was ‘The Story of the “Marie Celeste” ‘ (with 35 illustrations) by Charles Edey Fay.

Delilah Badger left the library and was never seen again.