Tuesday, October 2, 2007

Styles of Living

Dear Aggie,

Haircuts. What do you think about them?

I tend to wear mine in a conservative, debonair-about-town style; a little longer than your friend in the office, but not so much as to require the use of a comb to look presentable. Harold, on the other hand, has his in a shoulder length style, usually with a front parting and waves over his ears.

Gillian’s always looks the same; exactly the length and style she had when she died for the first time. She does chop it short from time to time but it only lasts until the rising of the sun. Felicia, on the other hand, has huge problems with her hair. The curse of a werewolf, she says, is not so much the enforced change at the full moon but the split ends that occur from having your hair pulled back into your scalp all the time. She used to favour a long brunette curtain of silky locks but has opted for a stylish bob now in her natural mousy-brown. Lycanthropy has no respect for hair dye.

Julie now, is another matter. Darker than Felicia’s, she normally wears it long but when she’s working her spells it becomes a nebulous blur around her head and gets into her eyes, even if she’s previously held it up in a barette. She wants to have it cut into a shorter style but I like the way it is. Should I tell her to go ahead or not?



If Lydia had disappeared again in 1985, her daughter, Missy, would have been nineteen or twenty. What prompted her to cease contact with Harold?

Ada stirred her coffee. “So Missy is her daughter then? Fascinating to think I have a niece I didn’t know about. When she signed her cards Lydia and Missy I assumed she had a special friend.”

“Special friend?” Harold raised his eyebrows. “Like a girlfriend?”

“Yes.” Just for a second Ada looked her years, instead of her usual sprightly self. The moment passed and she put the spoon on the table with a definitive thud. “It wasn’t acceptable to have a partner of the same gender in those days,” she said. “Frederick knew that well enough, which is why he became, to all appearances, a man.”

“I know that, mum,” said Harold. “I know he wasn’t always a man.”

“Well then.” Ada picked up her cup and took it to the sink. “Now I know where he got it from. I shall have words with Lydia when I see her next.”

“Is that really why she went away, though?” I asked. “The fear of being outed? I remember Lydia well. She wasn’t the kind to bow to public pressure.”

“This is beside the point,” said Felicia. “Missy was… is… her daughter. That doesn’t make her a lesbian. Quite the opposite, in fact.”

“Why are you so interested in my sister all of a sudden?” said Ada, looking at me. “You’ve never mentioned her before this week.”

It was pointless trying to hide anything from Ada. She always found out in the end and if you held back information that was the point where you’d become intimately acquainted with Mr. Spoon. Traumas in his childhood mean that he still won’t have a wooden spoon in the house now.

“I found these bloodstains,” I began.

Until the morrow.

No comments: