Tales From The Town: A Summer Book

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Notes:

1. Written between the 5th and the 11th of August, 2022
2. Although the cover was drawn on the of August, 2022
3. And also the back cover.
4. And also I suppose technically The Cat In Summer was written whenever The Cat In Winter was written.
5. Which was last summer instead of this summer, it appears.
6. Also it’s too hot to transcribe these today so I hope you can read them all.
7. I assure you the crossed out word at the end of Flags Of Forgotten Nations is not rude.
8. At all.
9. Unless you consider C&A rude
10. It’s quite rude I suppose.

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Tales From The Town #65: The Lodger (Methods Of Success)

He said all the right things to the right people, smiled the right smiles, stared into their eyes with exactly the right intensity to suggest sincerity. No matter what he did, what he said, those fluttering eyes of his would convince you it wasn’t his fault. It was yours.

“No, no, I should be the one apologising to you,” Agnes said to him, as she surveyed the wreckage beneath the tree. The ruined swing, the broken branch, the sullen children mourning their loss. “I should have told you it was only strong enough for the kids…”

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Notes:

1. Written on May 12th, 2022

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Tales From The Town #63: Unpacking, or The Tools Of The Trade

Christopher laid out the contents of his suitcase carefully on the bed, checking each item off a list to make sure nothing had been mislaid in transit. You never could tell the trouble lost items might bring.

1. Phone #1 (public use)
2. Phone #2 (private use)
3. Laptop #1 (unlocked, innocent)
4. Laptop #2 (locked, encrypted, incriminating)
5. Printer
6. Laminator
7. Wireless Listening Devices #1-#7
8. Passive Listening Devices #1-#4
9. Notebook (in code)
10. Pens (various colours)
11. Camera #1 (conspicuous, innocent)
12. Camera #2 (inconspicuous, deniable)
13. Camera #3 (concealable, beyond legal and moral bounds)
14. Credit/Debit Cards #1-#6 (various names)
15. Voice Modulator (still in box)
16. Cables (knotted bundle)

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Notes:

1. Written on (date lost)
2. But probably in the first half of 2022
3. Or maybe late 2021

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Tales From The Town #61: Explanations Of Necessities

“But why, Mum?”

“What’s he doing here?”

“He’s the new lodger,” Agnes explained. “He’s moving into the new rooms.”

“We don’t want him.”

“We don’t need him.”

“But we do need his money,” Agnes said. “It’s sad but it’s true. Feeding all you kids doesn’t come cheap.”

“We aren’t that expensive!”

“We barely eat a thing!”

“Daniel eats nothing at all!”

“I eat apples from the apple tree,” Daniel said. “And drink water from the tap.”

“And ice creams from the ice cream van,” said Agnes, sighing slightly. “I’m sorry everyone, but we really do need a new lodger now Oya’s moved in with Anna.”

“But she hasn’t moved out!”

“She’s just moved upstairs!”

“I know, I know,” said Agnes. “But it’s not like I can continue charging them both now they share a single room, is it?”

“You could!” Claire said. “I would.”

“It just wouldn’t be fair,” said Agnes.

“Who cares about fair!” Claire grumped. “I hate him!”

“You hardly know him, Claire,” Agnes said. “How can you hate him?”

“He called me fat!”

“He did not,” Ethel said.

“He did!”

“Didn’t!”

“He said you were a big girl,” Tina said. “I was there.”

“We were all there,” Ethel said. “Even Mum!”

“See!” Claire said. “It’s the same thing. I told you!”

“That’s not the same thing, Claire,” Agnes said. “I’m sure he was just trying to be nice.”

“He’s not nice at all,” Claire said. “He’s creepy. I don’t like his eyes. Or his smile. Or his name.”

“He’s got eyes like blueberry pies,” Daniel said.

“What’s wrong with his name?” Agnes said. “Christopher’s a nice name.”

“He’s got a name like a videogame,” Daniel suggested. It was the best he could do.

“It’s not even a little bit nice!” Claire said. “It’s an awful name and I hate it!”

“He’s got smiles like a crocodile’s!” Daniel added for good measure.

“No he doesn’t,” Claire said, spinning right round so she could refute Daniel’s allegations head on. “If he had a smile like a crocodile his smile would be nice and I’d like him but his smile is awful and I hate him so he doesn’t have a smile like a crocodile AT ALL.”

“Claire what’s gotten into you?” Agnes asked. “He’s not even moved in yet. You probably won’t even have to see him when he does. He’s very busy. He works in the city, you know?”

“Well maybe he should stay there!” Claire shouted, before suddenly slumping down on the settee.

It was all too much for her. She pulled a hairbrush out of her pocket and started running it furiously through her hair in an attempt to calm down. The cat pawed at her knees, then climbed up her leggings like they were a ladder. Everyone else drifted from the room like clouds.

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Notes:

1. Written on May 9th, 2022

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Tales From The Town #60: Entrance Interview

It was the eyes that did it. Those eyes.

Agnes couldn’t remember anything he’d actually said during the interview, but after she’d shown him the house, the rooms, the garden, the children, all it took was one look from those eyes, those dreamy blue eyes, and she found herself nodding, agreeing, holding her hand out towards him to confirm that yes, he could move in whenever he was ready.

And so the deal was done. There was no turning back now. The lodger had arrived.

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Notes:

1. Written on May 9th, 2022

__________

Support An Accumulation Of Things

If you like the things you've read here please consider subscribing to my patreon or my ko-fi.

Patreon subscribers get not just early access to content and also the occasional gift, but also my eternal gratitude. Which I'm not sure is very useful, but is certainly very real.

(Ko-fi contributors probably only get the gratitude I'm afraid, but please get in touch if you want more).

Thank you!