Weirdtongue (49) 

Weirdtongue (49)

Continued from: HERE.

Mrs Celia Mummerset missed a number of people.

She still visited the living body of Mrs Rachel Milledges at the hospital whilst the real friend who used to exist within that body was missing, presumed lost forever. Mrs Mummerset also missed her own son: she knew not where or why. She kept her mobile switched on day and night in the hope he would ring – with the combined hope that her latest male admirer (another missing person) would also ring: from abroad where she believed he was currently travelling on business. She missed Mrs Lettuce Weggs who had drowned in her own septic tank. She missed another friend: Mrs Maria Morales who had died one wash-day…

The circumstances concerning this death of Mrs Morales are still sub judice or, at least, subject to a version of their own circumstantial evidence. Her son, Modal, one Monday morning, left his corner shop – having shut it with a card on the door saying “back soon”. He seemed to have deterred most regular customers, in any event. He was intent, today, upon setting off to visit his Mum for some advice regarding the pests that had attacked him. She was an expert, he knew, upon old-fashioned complaints that bore names from old wives’ tales and that only the old wives themselves - versed or steeped in the real past as they were - knew how to suffer properly or with dignity.

Ever since the pests – as he knew them – had attacked his shop, he had felt one such pest eating away at him from under his skin. To help palliate it, he needed simply for it to be named. His Mum was a wise woman, better than any doctor. Modal loved her in his own quaint way. In any event, he was, today, finally, at the end of his tether, having decided to shut up his shop and tell his Mum, without further delay, about his own worst fears. But he had forgotten it was wash-day. He should have guessed, however, judging by the breezy blue of the sky and the fulsome white billows of configured clouds veritably racing above him like the airy ghosts of cattle.

“Hi, Mum!” he shouted as he spotted her pegging out smalls on the washing-line. “How’s Sidney the Suds and Albert the Clothes-Horse?” he continued shouting as he thus joked across the street from where he could already see her waving at him.

Yet, from that distance, he spotted that she seemed skinnier than her habitually jolly wash-day plumpness. Now as thin as when she was a young slip of a girl during the Spanish Civil War all those decades before. The matter somehow concerned the ancient rusty-handled mangle through which she’d just been strenuously wringing the sodden clothes. Nobody could later fathom exactly the nature of any available circumstantial evidence – other than that she turned out, upon investigation, to be quite dead, waving like a flag from where she was pegged out upon her own washing-line.

[b]'Weirdtongue' continues HERE.[/b]


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