ELIZABETH Beckingridge had seen it before. As a former wild child herself she was familiar with the concept. It came from too much money and privilege with little sense of the real world. This was different though. Her nephew George was something different.
“He’s just spoiled,” she told her brother ERNEST. Ernest was sweet natured, kind and completely incapable of delivering the discipline. His wife, Alice, was though.
When Alice died this could no longer be denied.
She walked a long the Main Street of the beautiful town of Filton, heading towards the Beckingridge Manor with a COLDFORD CITY TRAVEL MUG in hand filled with black coffee.
“Elizabeth!” A familiar voice called her name, using the full name knowing her well enough to know she hated the shortened versions of Liz or Lizzie.
It was Mrs Peterson. The manor house’s closest neighbour. Her twin boys Ollie and Oz were playmates of George’s.
“Good morning, Mrs Peterson,” Elizabeth greeted hoping she wouldn’t be kept in conversation too long.
“I didn’t know you were back in town.”
“I never left,” replied Elizabeth. “After Alice’s funeral I decided to stay on and help Ernest out. I didn’t see you at the funeral, she added.”
Mrs Peterson pouted. “Alice was a dear friend of mine but I didn’t think that it was very appropriate given everything that happened. I heard that there was a bit of a fuss, picketers still calling her a child murderer.”
Elizabeth sighed. She wasn’t getting away without a satisfactory explanation to the nosy neighbour.
“We’re really just trying to focus on what’s ahead of us and try and get back to normality. You should send the twins over. I’m sure George would love to see them. He tells me they avoid him at school.”
Mrs Peterson’s face screwed as though she sucked on a lemon. “I’d rather the boys didn’t come over and it was me who told them to not speak to him. They don’t make great friends and there is always trouble.”
Elizabeth rolled her eyes. “Just say what you mean. You don’t want to be associated with a child killer. An accusation that was acquitted I might add and you don’t want your precious twins associating with my nephew because the last time they did there was a torn designer shirt, a broken nose and a beheaded dog to contend with.”
Mrs Peterson pouted. “Then you can see my point?”
Elizabeth sighed. “We are trying to do what we can to calm him down. These days he spends most of his time locked in the music room.”
Mrs Peterson seemed conflicted about something. “I have a music tutor I use for the boys. Oz is positively a prodigy on the cello. Perhaps some music lessons could give him something positive to focus on.”
“Short of having him committed you mean,” Elizabeth said in return but it was more of a mumble to herself.
“Mr BAINES is his name. You will find his flier on the town notice board. I must dash but do tell Ernest I send my best.”
George did enjoy tinkering with the piano. Perhaps it would give him some focus. With all the other kids shunning him it would help for him to have something to fill his day. Elizabeth wondered if this music teacher had what it took to keep George Beckingridge as a pupil.
When Elizabeth’s young nephew starts asking of the murder his mother was acquitted from she feels it’s time to find the disturbed little boy something to focus on. Music lessons might be key.
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Bring me your sick. Bring me your troubled. Bring me those that society can no longer cope with. They will always have a home here at HARBOUR HOUSE.