Tales from the Finchbottom Vale – (46) Love is a Many-Splendored Thing (Part 05)
Following the success of the party on Saturday Gwen had a quiet evening in on her own and an early night.
The next day it was St Lucy’s as usual and was on the receiving end of a surprise herself when Dennis appeared unexpectedly halfway through the service as he wasn’t due back until the Wednesday.
It was a lovely surprise but it was only a flying visit, he had only come back to see her because he missed her and he had to leave again the next day and would be gone until Friday.
So she was on her own on Monday evening when there was an urgent banging on her front door and when she opened it was Leslie and her dog Trio, so called because he only had three legs.
“Hello dear” she said “is everything alright”
“No its not” she replied
“Why whatever’s the matter?” Gwen asked
“Wendy’s been beaten up” Leslie replied sombrely
“What?” she said incredulously “by who?”
“Her mother” she said
“Right where is she?” she demanded as she slipped her coat on
“I’ll kill her, I’ll give her a taste of her own medicine”
It took all Leslie’s strength to hold Gwen back and it took her ten minutes to calm her down and convince her that Wendy’s welfare was paramount.
“Well I’ll tell you this for nothing she’s not going back to her mother’s again”
“I agree,” Leslie concurred “but where can she go, she can’t stay at David’s”
“Definitely not” she said “So let’s go and see her”
They went across the road to David’s bungalow and knocked on the door and when it opened
Gwen asked with real concern
“How is the poor girl?” Gwen asked with real concern
“Much better” he answered, “come in”
They went into the kitchen and while Oliver finished making the hot chocolate he chatted to the ladies.
“I was beginning to wonder where you’d got to” he said
“Well, we would have been quicker but Slugger Quinton-Smith here wanted to go and smash Linda Corney’s face in”
“Seriously?” Oliver asked
Leslie nodded and Gwen blushed
“I was a bit miffed” Gwen said
“What happened?” David sked
“I persuaded her that it probably wasn’t the best course of action” Leslie relayed
“And that Wendy should be our main concern at the moment”
“Quite right” Oliver said pouring the hot milk into the waiting mug.
“Ok let’s go and see her” David suggested, “She’s in the lounge, go through”
And Ollie followed on with the hot chocolate.
But when they arrived in the lounge they found Wendy fast asleep on the sofa.
Oliver put the mug down briefly while he picked up a flowered throw and gently covered the sleeping figure.
He then picked up the hot chocolate and all four of them tiptoed from the room.
In the kitchen Leslie said
“Well that solves the problem of where she’s going to sleep”
“For tonight at least” he added
“I’ll look after her” Oliver said as Gwen appeared to be lost in thought and said nothing.
Leslie and David just exchanged a look and smiled.
Gwen only slept for a couple of hours that night which was a wet stormy one after the thunder rolled in and lighting flashes lit the sky, but it wasn’t that which kept her awake it was thinking about Wendy.