Tag Archives: Langlin

Chapter Forty — Five: Silence is Frozen

14 Jun

 

 

Did you notice my daughter's picture? Yep, she is here.

Did you notice my daughter’s picture? Yep, she is here.

Hi, I am the daughter of the author. What am I doing here? I have a place here. In fact two places. What are they? This is a mystery series. You either have to figure it out or wait until it is reveled.

Hi, I am the daughter of the author. What am I doing here? I have a place here. In fact two places. What are they? This is a mystery series. You either have to figure it out or wait until it is reveled.

 

 

The car drove for a ways, then bounced horribly. Stopped. The engine turned off. Silence. The door opened. Silence. The door closed. Silence. Some gravel crunched.

Silence.

Oh, my God. I never told anybody where I am. The Langlins are in Europe. They won’t be thinking about me. They wont even want to think about me until they come back and I’ve proven myself innocent. The lawyer won’t think about me until I don’t show up for trial. Nobody knows where I went to but the lawyer. It will be days before anybody realizes I’m missing.

Oh, my God. Oh my God. The killer kidnapped me. The cops are going to think I skipped the country. It will be years before they find my body and the case is reopened because they find out their mistakes.

Oh, my God. They may never find my body. Oh, my God. They will never know who the real killer is. The Langlins, My mother, Auntie Em, they will all think I did it. Oh, my God. Oh, my God.

OhMyGod!

After a few minutes, in the pitch black trunk, hearing nothing except her own thoughts and fears, panic engulfed L C. She began to kick her legs, buck her body, and make as much noise through her gag as she was able. The more she moved the more panic overtook her. Soon she was an unthinking mass of frantic movement and noise.

Then there was a solid banging on the back of the trunk.

L C froze. Both mind and body.

Silence.

She waited. She was sweating. Her breathing was ragged, almost hurting her nose as the drove in, out, in, out, in heaving blasts.

A voice came through the trunk. “Do you want me to beat you to a bloody pulp with a tire iron?”

Fear gutted her from the bottom of her stomach to her mouth.

“Answer me.”

Her first thought was, “How do I answer.” Her mouth was stuffed with something that prevented her from making intelligible sounds.

“If I open this trunk you will regret it.”

She yelled “NO!” as best she could through her gag.

“You make one more sound and I’m opening this trunk and beating you senseless so you can’t make any more sounds. Do you understand?”

Her mind raced. Is that a trick question? He just told me if I make one more sound he will beat me with a tire iron. Then he says make one more sound. What do I do? What do I do?

“DO YOU UNDERSTAND?”

“YES!” Losing control she fairly screamed the answer.

Silence.

Something scraped. She flinched thinking the trunk was going to open any second now. It didn’t.

It was dark. L C Was sweaty. She could smell her own fear. She began to shake. She was a tiny little girl again in a big dark bedroom, and there was something horrible in the closet. Daddy was gone and mommy was asleep and didn’t hear her.

 

 
© 2014 All Rights Reserved

 

 

Chapter Forty: To Bail or Not to Bail

27 Apr
BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading  TheMapThinker.com

BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading TheMapThinker.com

 

L C Had never been in a courtroom before. It looked just like the ones on TV, all the way from the old black and white Perry Mason series up to the newest Blu-ray.

She thought she was going to go to her arraignment but it turned out it was her preliminary hearing. Something that happens before an arraignment.

It would have been comforting to have had Kathy Bates from Harry’s Law instead of the heavy-eyed Tulkhorn sitting next to her. She looked at him out of the corner of her right eye. It was not a sight to cheer up her already lowered spirits.
He looked reluctant and lethargic, as though he not only did not want to be there, he barely had the energy to lift his head up high enough to look at the judge.

L C had asked him, “Are you really my lawyer? Or are you working for the Langlins?”

He studied her carefully before answering. “I work for money. My skills do not come cheap. If I am paid I work. If I am not paid ― I do not work. I am being paid ― to represent you. As long as I am being paid ― I represent you ― and you alone.”

“And if they quit paying you?”

“Then you will probably be given a public defender.”

Somehow she felt like she was back in the cell with Violet. “I’m a professional. I don’t get paid I don’t fight.” She had said.

A man in uniform stood up. “All rise.”

Everyone stood up.

The judge entered. Sat behind his desk. Nodded his head.

The man in uniform intoned, “You may be seated.” Then he sat down and so did everyone else.

The judge read some papers. Looked around the room. Said some things L C didn’t follow. Then he said a string of numbers and suddenly asked “How do you plead. Guilty or not guilty.”

“Not guilty. My client has no knowledge of the crime in any manner, shape or form.”

The prosecutor rose. He was everything her lawyer was not. He was young. He was good-looking. He was thin and hard muscled. He bounded to his feet. He spoke strongly, quickly, and steadily. He had a good speaking voice.

“We ask that bail be denied, your honor. She is a flight risk. She has already attempted to flee the country once and it was entirely through luck she was apprehended within minutes of boarding.” He handed papers to the judge. L C assumed they were tickets, flight plans, etc. Proof she was boarding an airplane bound for Europe.

Tulkhorn rose. “Rediculous. My client,” he stared at L C causing every eye in the room to go to her. She was dressed in the most professional, most “nanny” looking outfit money could buy. He had handed it to her earlier and instructed her to go into the bathroom and put it on. She was surprised that it fit her perfectly, but it did.

“She was not fleeing. She was acting ― in her capacity as nanny. She was following her employers instructions. On extremely short notice ― I might add. Unless,” he managed to look at the prosecutor with his entire body, not just his eyes,

“you claim her employer ― was somehow involved ― in this alleged ‘escape’ ― you keep talking about.”

The judge brought down his gavel. “You will address the court, counselor.”

Ponderously Tulkhorn turned his body toward the judge. “Of course your honor. Is it your wish to extradite her employers from,” he riffled through his papers, “France, I believe.” He waited expectantly.

The judge did not look happy. “Of course not. I do not believe anyone here has implied her employers were, or are, in any way concerned in the matter.” He looked to the prosecutor. “Isn’t that correct, counselor.”

“Of course your honor. All of our findings indicate the girl acted on her own.”

“Woman,” Stated Tulkhorn. “She is twenty years old. She is no longer a girl.”

“This woman, acted alone. She admits to being in the cabin and her prints are all over a revolver which appears to have been fired at the crime scene.”

“Appeared.” Tulkhorn straightened his tie. “Was the gun fired at the crime scene or not? Was it fired during the crime? She does not deny handling the gun. She admits it. Even if she fired it. If she did so a week before the crime ― it is not pertinent.”

“One question at a time, counselor.” Advised the judge.

The prosecutor looked apologetic. “Our town is not large enough to afford a full-sized crime lab, your honor. We have to farm these things out. The results are not back yet.”

“I see the pistol, I am unclear  –  about what has been sent –  to the crime lab.”

“A bullet dug out of the roof of the cabin, your honor.”

“It is a hunter’s cabin, your honor, such things – often – happen.. Is there any proven connection between my client and the bullet in the roof?”

“We cannot allow a cold-blooded killer to roam the streets at will simply because the test results that would prove it are not yet returned to us.”

Tulkhorn squared his shoulders. “Noble sentiments. However my client is not a murderer. She has nothing to run from. And the results of the test will clear her of wrong doing.”

The prosecutor spoke passionately. “She murdered her fiance with no compassion. It was a torture scene. She knows we will prove this. She has every reason to flee. And we do not believe it is in society’s best interest to allow someone with so little compassion as to commit such a barbarous to be allowed to roam the streets, your honor.”

“There is no evidence ― my client ― has had any contact ― with the deceased ― except for a chance encounter ― one time only ― in a grocery store.”

“Which she lied to the police about.”

“A chance encounter ― a half a year ago. In a grocery store. I am sure ― I can produce someone ― the prosecutor ― or even yourself your honor ― you encountered in a grocery store ― a half a year ago ― that you do not recall.”

“An encounter that was so blatant the owner of the story threw her out over.”

“That has yet to be proven. And the prosecution ―has only interviewed ― one witness to this ― alleged ‘incident’.”

In the end she was let go with five hundred thousand dollars bail which Tulkhorn posted. She had to surrender her passport and was told not to so much as leave the city limits.

 

 

 
© 2014 All Rights Reserved

Chapter Thirty – Four: The Airport

2 Mar
BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading  TheMapThinker.com

BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading TheMapThinker.com

 

 

They had already checked their bags. They were already standing in line to be boarded. When L C Looked up she saw two police, one man, one woman, jostling through the crowd.

The man looked familiar.

“Wonder why Lance is here?” asked Mrs. Langlin.

“Looks like he has a new partner,” commented her husband. “An improvement over the last one.”

As they drew closer L C Recognized the policeman. It was the same man she met, out of uniform, in front of Sternhouser’s market, the day she got the job of nanny. As he came up to them she smiled at him. He did not return it.

“Hello, Lance. What brings you here? And who is your partner?” asked Mrs. Langlin.

“Good afternoon, Mrs. Langlin. Mr. Langlin.” Morgan said with a formality that elicited a raised eyebrow from Mr. Langlin and a pinched frown from Mrs. Langlin.

He turned to L C “Are you Lindsey Carol Davenport?”

“Well, uh, you know I am.”

“You are under arrest. Please place your hands behind your back so my partner can handcuff you so we make as little a scene as possible.”

The words at first did not make sense to her. She had to replay them again in her mind slowly. She was being arrested. Here at the airport.

“Stop. Wait a minute. I’ve done nothing. What am I under arrest for?”

“What is she under arrest for?” asked Mr. Langlin curiously as though a very interesting idea had just struck him.

Morgan spoke politely but firmly. “That is not my concern. My job is to arrest her. She will be charged at the station.”

“My.” Said Mr. Langlin thoughtfully. “That sounds ominous.”

Morgan turned to L C “You will put your hands behind your back now and allow my partner to handcuff you or she will throw you down to the ground and handcuff you the hard way.”

L C Began to cry. Her chest heaved.

Guinevere started to run to L C.  Mrs. Langlin grabbed her daughter and pulled her close.

Delavera stepped up behind L C. Grabbed her unresisting hands one by one, pulled them behind her back, and handcuffed her firmly.

Mr. Langlin told her, “Say nothing to anyone until the lawyer gets there.” He started tapping his cell phone.

As L C Was being led away she looked back through bleary, teared eyes. She saw the Langlins, Bixby, Missy Mousey, and Guinevere, disappearing into the tunnel to the plane. Mr. Langlin was closing his phone, having put it in airplane mode.

 

 

 

© 2014  All Rights Reserved

 

Chapter Thirty-Three: The Mansion

23 Feb
BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading  TheMapThinker.com

BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading TheMapThinker.com

The maid, Amy, answered the door.

Morgan blinked at her. “Where is Bixby?”

The maid looked at both of them, then to the police car. “Do you want Bixby?” she asked.

Morgan used his, “I’m an officer of the law” voice. “I was expecting him to answer the door.”

“He is not here.”

“Where is he?”

“At the airport.”

Morgan took a deep breath. “Why is he at the airport?”

“He gets to go to Europe. I get to stay and clean the house. I am very busy doing it. Is there anything else I can do for you?”

“Are Mr. And Mrs. Langlin in?”

“They are at the airport.”

Delavera stood to the side laughing. Morgan refused to look at her.

“I take it they are going to Europe?”

“They are rich. They can do whatever they want.”

“Ooookkayyyy. How about Lindsay Carol Davenport?”

“Do you mean the new nanny or the furniture?”

“Nanny.”

“She is at the airport too. I work here five years. She works here five months. She gets to go to Europe and I get to clean the house. Are you done? I have work to do.”

Morgan did not bother to answer her. He and Delavera headed to the car at a fast walk.

© All Rights Reserved

Chapter Twenty-eight: Getting Ready

11 Jan
BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading  TheMapThinker.com

Starting a new year. Hopefully no one  gets seriously sick or dies this year. Except in fiction. Thank you everyone for your patience.

It was almost noon when L C entered the house. She had not thought about what to expect. What she did not expect was Amy, the maid looking up at her and saying, “Oh, great. Someone else to get in my way.”

The two of them had never spoken together much but L C had never realized the maid resented her. The discovery was a surprise.

“Sorry. I will try not to.” was all L C could think to say, with a half smile.

“Just be careful. If you fall down and can’t go with them I’ll be blamed.” Amy pointed to a section of the floor that had just been mopped.

L C frowned. “Thank you. I will be careful.”

Bixby was standing at the bottom of the stairs looking upwards. He was surprised to see her and said so. “I thought you had plans for the day?”

“I did but they didn’t work out. What is wrong with Amy? She about bit my head off.”

“I’m afraid she is a reverse snob. She wants to go, can’t say I blame her, and she won’t so she see’s those of us who are going as thinking we are better than she is. We don’t see ourselves as better than she is but she does.”

“Huh?” L C thought she would never untangle the politics and snobbery of rich people’s servants.

“L C!” A little voice rang out and suddenly there was a flurry of short skirted happiness bounding down he hallway and into L C’s arms.

“I knew you’d come. You couldn’t stay away. Yipee.”

L C picked the squirming bundle up in her arms, laughing.

“You gotta help me pack everything. I need lots and lots.” she squirmed out of L C’s arms, grabbed her index finger and started pulling her toward the stairs.

“What on earth is going on?” asked L C

The little girl put her finger on her chin as though there were a big secret afoot. “I think it must be spies or something. One minute everything was normal and the next mommy and daddy were running all around and around saying we gotta go to Europe.”

L C made a big “O” of her mouth and said, “Well how mysterious.” And let herself be led upstairs.

“L C, can Rocko go?”

“I totally don’t know, honey. We will have to ask your mommy.”

Guinevere’s bedroom was a little girl’s dream castle. It struck L C Funny that a little girl whose wealth rivaled any monarch from the past, whose access to modern conveniences made any medieval princess life seem like uncomfortable poverty, should be entranced by the story of Cinderella. She kept the joke to herself, never mentioning it to anyone else.

Mrs. Langlin entered. Today her hair was jet black and cut Jackie Kennedy style sans pill box hat.

“Oh. You are here. Would you be a dear and go help Bixby while I explain to Guinny that she is only allowed one suitcase.” There was, of course, no question in the tone of voice, only in the words.

“Can Rocko go, Mommy?”

“Afraid not this time, Little Miss. He would have to have special shots, and all kinds of things we do not have time for. Maybe next time.”

“I’ll get my aunt Emerald to sit him. Rocko and Tabby love to sit and bark at each other.” It always made L C laugh to see a tabby colored parakeet and a gold and white chihuahua sitting on the floor barking at each other.

“That would be good.” Replied Mrs. Langlin.

Downstairs she found Bixby looking every centimeter the butler. Next to him was an overweight man who eyes drooped as though he did not have the energy to pick them up properly. His natural expression was no expression. Poker faced. When he did change expression, such as when Bixby introduced L C To him, his expression seemed to go through a planning stage before they took effect on his face.

L C Decided she did not like him.

“It is a cussed nuisance,” he was telling Bixby. “On such short notice my secretary could not even get first class tickets for the Langlins. She was lucky to get all of you aboard the same plane.”

“You say it is not a direct route?”

“No. There are some change overs. They will still be there sooner than if they waited. Not to mention the reduced luggage.”

“So much for the privilege of being rich.” Joked Bixby.

“Rich is relative, I am afraid. The really rich can afford their own private jumbo jets. Have them at their disposal twenty-four seven. Right now one a quarter that size would be sufficient.”

The two men shook hands and parted. The heavy-eyed man looked at L C As though evaluating her character, nodded, then departed.

“Who is that?” asked L C.

“Lawyer. His main skill is keeping things out of court. Not that he lacks skill in court, but he seldom lets things get that far.”

“Should he have been discussing the Langlin’s wealth with you?”

“He never says anything to me I don’t already know. I never say anything to him he does not already know. Otherwise it would be difficult for us to talk to each other.”

(c) 2014, All Rights Reserved

Chapter Twenty-Four: The Briefcase

17 Nov
BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading  TheMapThinker.com

BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading TheMapThinker.com

 

 

Lonnie was smart. He knew he was smart. He had always known he was smart. When he put his mind to it. Course he didn’t always put his mind to it. Most things weren’t worth putting your mind too.

His mother and father. They were wrong. Yeah. Way wrong. They said the drugs he had used had killed off all his brain cells and he would never be as smart as he used to be again. But they were so wrong. Even while he was on drugs he was smart and he had proved it.

Course he had to do something after he saw what had happened to Cody. Even his stuck up parents would probably wanted at least a joint if they’d seen what he had.

Too bad he couldn’t tell them how smart he was but then he would have to tell them all the rest and that would not be a good idea. No it would not.

After he found the body he headed over to Cody’s house as fast as he could and cleared out everything that was incriminating. Cody didn’t live in a real house. He lived in a garage that wasn’t even attached to the main house. If you knew how, and Lonnie did, you could go in and out through the alley without anyone seeing you.

The alley was unpaved and hadn’t been gravelled in years. It was passable if you had an older model car that wasn’t so close to the ground. Bushes grew untrimmed. They would scratch the sides of the car so you wouldn’t want to take a new one down it anyway. The bushes afforded plenty of hiding places, great to disappear into if the cops were looking for you.

A perfect place for someone who bought and sold drugs or worked for the CIA.

After he got the most obvious stuff out he started on stuff where a CIA agent might conceal something important as something innocent. Even if he thought it might not be incriminating but it might be he cleared it all out. All the electronics, cameras, computers, every DVD, CD, papers. He got everything out of the house as fast as he could.

Then he started taking stuff just because he could. After all Cody wouldn’t need it any more and Lonnie was his best friend.

Cody wouldn’t even care if all he did was trade the stuff off for drugs. Hey, they were friends, right? Cody would want him to get high, wouldn’t he?

It was starting to get dark and he was going back for another load. When he saw movement.

Lonnie discounted the police. They would go in the front way. Might be somebody about a drug deal though and Lonnie did not want anyone to see him here. He ducked behind a bush and waited.

It wasn’t a druggie and it wasn’t the police. It was Mr. Penn. He was looking for a back way into Cody’s garage. Eventually he found it.

As soon as he did Lonnie slipped past the way he had come and looked for a car that did not belong. It didn’t take him long to find it. It was the same car he had followed when he tailed Cody and the CIA agent out to the safe house. On the front seat was a briefcase.

Lonnie didn’t see any need for subtlety. If you parked a car looking like that in a neighborhood looking like this you were asking for trouble. Might as well give him some.

He picked up a rock. Smashed the window. Grabbed the briefcase. Stepped back into the alley and faded into the bushes. He had to stop himself from giggling as the car burst into a horn honking, light flashing, rooting tooting complaint over the intrusion.

If anyone had bothered to look, by the time they had, Lonnie would have already been safely concealed. In this neighborhood no one would admit to seeing anything anyway.

Two minutes later Mr. Penn came running down the alley to see to his car.

Thirty seconds later he stood in front of the smashed window naming the people who did this to him every swear word in the unprinted dictionary.

Lonnie thought to himself, “A man in a suit shouldn’t even know those words.”

 

 

© 2013 All Rights Reserved

Chapter Twenty-Three: Hurry!

9 Nov
BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading  TheMapThinker.com

BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading TheMapThinker.com

 

L C’s first shock was discovering, depending on the household, the servants, and the nanny herself, her position occupied a sort of no-man’s-land between servant and family.

Being introduced to the staff was formal, which did not surprise her. Mrs. Langlin told the assembled servants, “This is L C Davenport. She is to be our new nanny. I wish that you make her as comfortable as possible.” She then went on to introduce each servant by occupation and name. Names and occupations L C forgot as soon as she heard them.

She did notice for the first time that Mrs. Langlin sometimes talked “funny”, or “from a superior postition”. It was later she was to discover that good English, such as L C spoke, was not sufficient for associating with people of certain classes. Correct English was a must. This meant knowing, and using, the subjunctive tense where appropriate – A tense L C’s English teacher had told the class was archaic and almost unused. What it meant in its simplest terms was that while L C had never heard anyone in her life say, “If I were you,” Mrs. Langlin would find it almost impossible to use the incorrect, “If I was you.”

Then Mrs. Langlin told L C, “Please make yourself at home while Guinny naps.” and promptly disappeared.

When L C turned around so had the rest of the staff.

The house was huge. It was also beautiful, but L C preferred to go outside and look at the property. On the back porch she met the butler. She could not remember his name, but his uniform was unmistakable. He was muscular, not portly, but managed to look like he was born into the uniform suit of a butler.

She smiled at him.

He did not return it. “Anything I can do for you miss?”

“My name is L C. You aren’t old enough to call me miss. I’m not sure you are older than I am.”

“The last person who held your job felt it would be presumptuous of the staff to call her by her first name.”

L C laughed. “Presumptuous?” She did a small pirouette. “Sounds like she thought she was better than everyone else.”

“That she did, miss.”

“Miss. There is no one else around. Do we have to be formal with each other? Am I supposed to call you ‘Master Butler’ or something.”

“No. Nor do Mr. and Mrs. Langlin care so long as there are no outsiders around. So long as it is respectful.”

“So can you respectfully call me L C? I mean it can’t be that much different from working in a beauty salon. Everyone does their job to keep the business going, right?”

“You worked in a beauty salon?”

“No. My aunt works for Jessica Bain in her beauty salon.”

“I see. I have met her. Very nice lady.”

“So tell me, isn’t a nanny part of the staff?”

He looked at her oddly. “L C is it? Each letter pronounced separately? Let us go to the kitchen and have a cup of coffee. I think you would like to meet Missy Mousy the cook.”

“Missy Mousy?”

“We call her that. Partly because she looks so mousy, and partly because she refers to all her ex-boyfriends as frogs.”

He was right about her looks. She was a squarish woman who looked like she would climb into a cupboard and hide if anyone said “Boo.” The kitchen itself was warm, friendly, and smelled of fresh bread. The butler, who said he had been called Bixby by everyone he’d known for as long as he could remember led her to an immaculate table reserved for those Missy Mousy allowed into her kitchen.

She made no bones about her dislike of the prior nanny.

Later, when Mrs. Langlin came into the kitchen she found L C at the end of the counter happily peeling carrots. Her only comment was, “I do not believe I have ever in my life seen a nanny do that.” Guinevere was scraping up the peelings and putting them away.

“But Mrs. Langlin, helping in the kitchen is part of being a girl. May I bring Guinevere down here some time and help her bake cookies?” L C and Guinevere grinned at each other.

Mrs. Langlin eyed the cook, “How do you feel about this, Martha?”

“Every little girl should know how to make cookies, ma’am.” Missy Moussy answered without looking up from the dough she was rolling out. Her voice was tentative.

“Then I see no harm in it.” She turned back to L C “Please have Guinny to the pool in half an hour. Do you swim?”

“Yes, but I don’t have a swimsuit here.”

“Check in the bathhouse. There is bound to be one that fits you.”

Nowadays L C and the rest of the staff were very much like family, and she was learning new things every day. Such as the front door. It was a huge thing, brass decorated, double, and always opened by the butler. Her predecessor had insisted on using it as her right. The Langlins could have told her not too, but did not, and Bixby could have complained, but he would not. When L C got to know him better she teased him about his aversion to using contractions when he talked, but he never relented and never used words like “didn’t” or “can’t” in place of “did not” or “can not”.

L C went around to the side door and entered like the rest of the servants. It was a pleasant Saturday morning.

The second she opened the door she could feel the charge of excitement in the air even though no one was around. There was no one in the kitchen either. That was the most unusual, there was always someone in the kitchen.

Guinevere came rushing in, yelling and dive bombing L C. “You are gonna go, aren’t you? You gotta go. Mommy said it is up to you.”

“Whoa. What are we talking about? Go where? When?”

Little Guinny jumped out of L C’s arms as quickly as she had landed in them and ran off yelling, “Mommy, mommy, mommy.”

L C followed.

“Oh, there you are.” Mrs. Langlin was wiping her hands. She was a naturally svelte woman who did not need clothing to make her look slimmer, more professional, or more sophisticated, yet all of her clothes were privately tailored to do just that. “I know I told you we would give you advance notice when left on trips, to give you time to put whatever you needed in order, but something really important has come up and we have to leave to Europe on a flight Monday. I do hope you can come with us and Little Guinny is looking so forward to you being with us.”

L C was taken aback and said nothing.

“We will be gone some time. At least a month. We need to stop at Germany, Italy, Spain, France, and end up in England.”

“I, uh, I see my fiance tomorrow morning.”

“I am sure he will not mind. It will be a wonderful opportunity for you to see places you have not seen yet and meet new people. Now if you will excuse me I have a trillion things to do. Perhaps you could take Guinny to your Aunt and have her hair done. It will give her a feeling of being grown up and getting ready for the trip while keeping her from underfoot.”

“Certainly, ma’am.”

She rounded up her small charge and headed to Jessica Bain’s beauty salon. Under normal circumstances L C would have loved the idea of cavorting off to Europe, even on the shortest of notices. But she was in the middle of making plans to get married.

How was he going to feel about that?

How did she want him to feel about that?

Her mother would tell her to go. She wanted to go. All of her aunts would think she should go, especially Aunt Emerald who would insist nothing should stand in her way.

But should she?

L C had one eye on a magazine, the other watching Little Guinny to make sure she did not get into anything. Everyone seemed to know her and everyone seemed to love her. Including her aunt’s odd colored parakeet, named Tabby. The colors of its Peaches, gold, grey, brown, and white, did somehow look like a tabby cat.

Guinny wandered around talking to the staff and the patrons as though she were in fact the owner making everyone feel at home. And she always studiously watched what people were doing and how they were doing it.

Guinny had been having a quiet conversation with an elderly blue haired lady when the woman said distinctly, “You are not allowed to watch that show, remember.”

“Am so.”

L C put away her magazine, neatly on a stack of others, and went to them. “Hello. I’m L C, Guinevere’s nanny.” L C thought about saying “Her new nanny,” But then thought better of it. L C wasn’t a new or an old anything. As of now she was Guinevere’s nanny.

“I see. Her last nanny would not allow her to see that Zena show. She said it was way too violent.”

“I think it does a girl good to be exposed to the idea of a woman being just as capable as a man in a man’s world.”

“What a name to call herself though. Zena. A so-called warrior princess. What kind of a self-image is that?”

“What kind of a self-image is the name Guinevere to live up to? She was the husband of King Arthur and was the lover of his best friend, Sir Lancelot.”

“You seem to have strong opinions.”

“There is no point in having weak ones.”

“Is Guinevere a bad name?” Piped the little voice from below. The old lady looked at L C as though to ask, “So how are you going to handle this?”

L C smiled, “It is a wonderful name, honey. But you are not your name. It is just something you have, like a dress or a car or a house. Zena would be Zena even if she were named Guinevere and Guinevere would be herself even if she had been named Tom.”

The old lady nodded. “You must have Emerald as your hair dresser. She talks like that.”

“Emerald is my aunt.”

“Then there is no point discussing anything with you. Much as I love Emerald, and I know she is brilliant, and a wonderful beautician. The sad fact is she does not have a reasonable bone in her body.”

 

 

 

 

© 2013  All Rights Reserved

 

Chapter Twenty – One: Born To Nanny

26 Oct
BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading  TheMapThinker.com

Much of the hectic times are over. Dad gets weekends off now. Mom’s health is improving. We should be back on track, a blog a week, as promised.

Until L C worked for the Langlins she had no idea the rich are, in many ways, different from other people. That those who were rich belonged to a culture with its own history, traditions, and requirements, not all of which had to do with money. Etiquette, especially table manners, and good English played a far larger role than she would have imagined.

Nor did she realize that when she became a nanny she was joining a culture with a long history of being entwined with the rich. The Langlins traveled to Europe and other continents on a regular basis. There were times when she, and her young charge, would eat in the company of friends and associates of the Langlins. It was important that neither she, nor Guinevere, embarrass them with their behavior or table manners.

Until she took this job L C thought her table manners were acceptable anywhere. She knew which fork to use, and when to use it, she did not belch at the table, nor did she rest her elbows upon it. Now she was learning with a shock that the “Proper Etiquette” she had learned was in fact “American Behavior” and was not acceptable all over the world.

There are places in the world, even the United States, where you DO belch at the table if you are complimenting the cook on a job well done, and places where you not only rest your elbows on the table but you place them at a forty-five degree angle. Places where you eat everything with the three fingers of the right hand and places where you use a knife and fork to eat your good morning toast and marmalade. And in every one of these places the manners of the rich were slightly different from the manners of the poor.

While first impressions are of lasting importance and often determine how people think of you, how you act and how you speak at the table determine how you will be treated.

As nanny it was L C’s job, not only to know these things, but to pass them on to the future world traveler, Guinevere.

Now she understood why the former nanny hated her so much. The days were long gone when a rich person would pick a poor jobless girl up off the street and give them the job of caring for their child. Now days nannies went to school, got degrees, trained, and joined professional organizations.

They might not all be perfect people, and their reasons for becoming a nanny might not have much to do with children, but they had worked for and earned the right to be a nanny.

L C had not.

One day, on the spur of the moment, L C asked Mrs. Langlin about it. Mrs. Langlin smiled, and nodded thoughtfully. “It is true. Most nannies nowadays go to school and learn their profession just as a dental technician does. However they learn things everyone can learn. Few are born to it.”

“How can you be born to the job of nanny?” L C’s half giggle, half chuckle, exhibited the uncertainty she felt. She had never thought of herself as being “born” to anything. She had simply had the good luck to be born into a normal middle class household and grew up in a normal middle class way. Unlike some of her cousins who grew up with far less. Or at least this is what she had always thought.

“Thanks to your mother’s determination, and your great grand parents willingness to pay for it, you are accomplished in ballet, acrobatics, tumbling, and piano.”

L C almost blurted, but then stopped herself. It had not been her great grand parents who had paid for anything. It had been her step father. And he had harped on how much he had done for her every day of her life. Until she could not think of him without hearing his voice telling her how much he had done for her and how grateful she should be. He seldom mentioned how worthless her real father was, but it was always behind his voice. She stopped herself. Mrs. Langlin was so nice L C could not bring herself to correct her, nor could she rant about her personal problems with her step father to her boss. It was, after all, unladylike. Instead she replied:

“Accomplished, yes, but hardly a world-class olympic champion in any of them.”

“A lady would not be. Pushing for an olympic champion is something people who are striving to become something would do. A world-class lady strives to have grace and poise. Just as you learned everything you would need to know to be a beauty queen. You know how to walk down the runway, you know how to sit on a chair properly. You are quite pretty. You could win, you know.” Mrs. Langlin’s voice had been gentle. Now it had a hint of amusement. “Has anyone every suggested, or have you ever thought of entering a beauty contest?”

“Well… Well… No.”

“How far can you walk, in a pair of high heels, with a book on your head?”

“All day if I want.”

“You see. Other people strive to prove they are as good as your birth right. All you have to do is live up to it.” Mrs. Langlin’s smile was as bright as a rainbow.

“I see,” said L C but she really didn’t. She was trying to understand and it showed.

“L C” Mrs. Langlin’s tone was kindly, “You can teach Eliza Doolittle to walk down the stairs gracefully, but if she falls she falls. It is sad to see. Once you’ve taken ballet no one has to teach you to walk down the stairs, and if you fall, you will do it so gracefully everyone will applaud.”

The reference to Eliza Doolittle went unnoticed by L C. Nor did she consider that her cousin, who also had not gone to college, and was not planning on going, would not have recognized the name. But every young lady in the Langlin’s social circle would.

“She has an instructor to teach her ballet.”

“True. But she has no one to teach her to love it. She adores you, and you should have heard her go on about the two of you dancing Chitty Chitty Bang Bang.”

“I was unaware you knew I studied ballet and piano.”

“My husband and I have to know everything there is to know about everyone we associate with. You acquire a million dollars and half the state sees you as a money tree. They have one thought on their mind. That is to cheat you out of it. You acquire a billion dollars and half the world sees you as a money tree for them to pick at.”

“I see,” L C said, and this time she understood.

© 2013 All Rights Reserved

Chapter Ten: Trevor

1 Jun
BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading  TheMapThinker.com

BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading TheMapThinker.com

Now. Last weekend. Nathaniel had popped the question. She could not believe she was already engaged to be married to a man she was sure was her dream come true. He was good-looking, confident, gracious, steeped in social skills and was content with L C Just as she was. Not to mention financially he was well off with a promising future. They would have their own children.

L C had been cruising by the vegetables looking at cucumbers and chives when Trevor came smiling around the corner. He had the look of a man who was either once very skinny and just starting to put on weight, or who was once heavy and was just about to become thin.

His grin was the quietly self-assured grin of a man who never met anyone who wasn’t his instant friend. It was easy to tell why. Other men would have chosen this opportunity to make sexually loaded comments about the cucumber she was holding. How that would be received would depend on the woman and her mood.

Trevor did not. Instead he picked up a gourd with an outrageously crooked neck and started telling her all the things she could do with it once she was the proud owner. Using his apron with the store emblem proudly emblazoned on it he showed her how it would make a great-coat rack. Hanging it from his thumb he showed her what an excellent bird house it would make. Grasping its crook and swinging it jauntily he demonstrated bashing in the heads of unwanted intruders. And if she felt inclined to want to keep this precious gem with her she could make a hole in the bottom and wear it for a hat. He did a small pirouette with it sitting on top of his head.

Not to mention when she had finished it would make a great edible and was easily cooked to taste.

She was having the greatest fun when she looked up and saw Raymond staring at them. He was down near the far end of the store, near the liquor aisle. At first she thought something must be terribly wrong.

Quickly she excused herself from Trevor. When she turned back Raymond was nowhere to be found. He was no longer in the store.

Later when she had called him on the phone Raymond said nothing was wrong, he was just tired and would she go out with him come Friday. She begged off saying this weekend the Langlins had planned a trip to the zoo and she was expected to escort Guinevere.

“When you marry me, L C You won’t have to work. I won’t allow it.”

“I like to work. I like being a nanny.”

“Taking care of our children will be a full-time job.”

Suddenly L C knew she could not, and would never, marry Raymond. Now she was angry with herself for not having told Raymond right away she was interested in someone else. Yet she could not figure out how to tell him now.

The next time she went in Stanhouser’s Market everyone was polite to her. No one was friendly. The men called her “Ma’am” When she asked about Trevor she was told “He doesn’t work here any more.” and nothing else.

When she asked Raymond he answered with a question, “Why would you concern yourself about him?”

 

 

© 2013 All Rights Reserved

Chapter Five: The Mother

27 Apr
BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading  TheMapThinker.com

BTW when you are done reading this chapter. If you think thinking is fun; if you think philosophy should be for everyone try reading TheMapThinker.com

When L C looked toward the front of the store she saw Raymond Stanhouser standing, elbows aggressively akimbo, watching everything. He looked handsome and protective standing there. She wondered what he might do were she to be arrested for kidnapping as the nanny hoped.

Mother could be right. Maybe she should go out with him. He had some good points. Unlike her father, he liked dogs. Daddy hated dogs. Never let her have one as a child and after seeing movies like Beverly Hills Chihuahua and Legally Blonde she decided to own one.

She lived with her mother which was fine, she loved her mother. She loved her father too, but since the divorce, her father lived with one bimbo after another. It was painful when she was a teenager and custody was a question. Now she was twenty she did not have to put up with it. She told her father, “You want to see me? Make a date for dinner. I’ll be there.” That was not likely to happen. He would tell her to leave the damn chihuahua at home and she would tell him she never left home without it. Not true, but she had a stubborn streak.

At least her mother found another man and stuck with him. Her stepfather, who never seemed to be able to say a full sentence without throwing in a word about how good he was to her.

Lately she began to think about moving out and living under a bridge. A person can take just so much of being reminded that every bite of food you eat was purchased by someone else’s hard earned dollar.

She did bookwork for “Just Bain Me” where her aunt worked. It was the most prestigious beauty salon in town and busy all the time, but did not require a full time book keeper. It wasn’t a lot, but it was money.

Mrs. Langlin drove up in a car so new it looked like it was still parked on the showroom floor. Guinevere was giggling happily in L C’s embrace. Seeing her mother, Guinevere sprang out of L C’s arms so fast she seemed to fly.

The policeman spoke quietly to Mrs. Langlin who nodded. She told her daughter, “Honey I’m going to have to talk business, okay?”

Guinevere looked around at her nanny, who held her arms out with a huge, loving smile on her face. L C, in a spiteful mood, silently mouthed the name “Zena.” Guinevere smiled and reached for L C and Mrs. Langlin passed her over. As she did so she gave one speculative look from L C to the nanny and back again.

The policeman took Mrs Langlin aside. They spoke softly for several minutes. The nanny acted nervous. L C wondered why they chatted so intently for so long.

When they returned L C looked at Judy Langlin. She had been in the middle of getting her hair done, her hair was blotched as though the color had only half taken. It was a testament to how much she valued her daughter that a woman in her social position would step outside looking like that. Operating on instinct L C said, “You may know my Aunt Emerald. She works for Jessica Bain.”

Mrs. Langlin smiled broadly. “She is the only person besides Jessica I ever allow to touch my hair. And she has that adorable parakeet.” She turned to Guinevere, looking intently into the child’s face, “Why were you running, Honey?”

She pointed to her nanny. “She hates me.” She said quietly.

Within a half hour L C had the job of nanny, was scheduled to take CPR classes, get a passport, and was riding little Guinevere on her shoulders across the parking lot.

 

 

© 2013 All Rights Reserved

 

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ultimatemindsettoday

A great WordPress.com site

Don Charisma

because anything is possible with Charisma

this is... The Neighborhood

the Story within the Story

stillness of heart

MUSINGS : CRITICISM : HISTORY : PASSION

The Guilty Preacher Man

abandoned illustrations

matchtall

A tall women amazon model WordPress.com sit

Three Wise Guys

Best not to think about it

Mister G Kids

A daily comic about real stuff little kids say in school. By Matt Gajdoš

Ray Ferrer - Emotion on Canvas

** OFFICIAL Site of Artist Ray Ferrer **

The Judy-Jodie and Kelli Memorial Blog

A great WordPress.com site

A Financial Life Coach

Your Financial Life Coach

Storyshucker

A blog full of humorous and poignant observations.

Dysfunctional Literacy

Just because you CAN read Moby Dick doesn't mean you should!

Top 10 of Anything and Everything - The Fun Top Ten Blog

Animals, Gift Ideas, Travel, Books, Recycling Ideas and Many, Many More

ajrogersphilosophy

A fine WordPress.com site

Thoughts

What ever I'm thinking

CosmicMind

Dissolving Ordinary Unconsciousness

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