by Gill James
It was oddly quiet at the Parkinsons’ semi in East Oakham. Sal had just come back from the pub with fiancé Matt and was astonished that her mother and father were not back from the cricket match. It was getting dark now, despite it being the middle of June. They’d left the pub because the landlord had called last orders.
“I wonder where they are,” said Sal.
“Oh, I wouldn’t worry,” said Matt. “Probably having coffee with someone or something stronger. Especially if they won.”
He was probably right. After all, her dad was vice-president of the Crockley cricket club. Crockley was where he worked. They were playing East Oakham so this match had been considered rather significant.
“I’m not really worried.” But she was tired and couldn’t understand why. “And now that I’ve sat down I can’t move.”
“All right. I’ll put the kettle on, shall I, and make a cup of tea?”
Sal nodded. She closed her eyes. She could hear Matt pottering about in the kitchen. The noise became fainter and then she woke with a start. Well, she hadn’t really been asleep but she’d sort of had a dream. A bit vague really. Something about a dark blue car. She wasn’t really sure what. But she could remember the number plate: MEM0 775 D. That wouldn’t exist, would it?
“Here, drink this,” said Matt as he placed a tray down on the table.
Sal took one of the mugs of tea and one of the digestive biscuits then picked up the TV remote.
She found a programme about mind-reading.
“You’re even better than this guy,” said Matt as she got question after question right.
“It’s just daft,” said Sal. “I’m only guessing. I feel nice and relaxed, though.”
They’d just finished their second cup and the credits were beginning to roll when Sal heard the key in the lock.
“Sorry we’re so late,” said her mum. “Only we stopped to help this old lady who was run over.”
“Oh dear,” said Matt.
“Oh it was all right. The car was going very slowly. But she was a bit shocked and so was the driver of the car.”
“We couldn’t make him understand a word,” said her dad. “I think he was foreign. Maybe the car was as well. Had a funny number plate. MEMO 775D.”
“Which side was the steering wheel on?” asked Matt.
“Good point,” said Mr Parkinson. “You know, I didn’t notice.”
“It was a blue car wasn’t it?” said Sal. “And it was backing out of that alleyway next to the hairdresser – you know where them mucky kids used to play?”
“Yes,” said Mrs Parkinson slowly.
“Bloody hell, what are you saying, Sal?” Matt’s eyes were round and open.
“I saw it when I fell asleep when you were in the kitchen.”
Nobody seemed to know what to say.
“You know, you’re getting good at this clairvoyance malarkey,” said Matt as they got ready for bed later. “Perhaps you should make a career of it.”
“Mmm,” said Sal. It hadn’t been much use, though had it? It had been a bit of fun with the TV programme. And she hadn’t really been worried about her mum and dad and even if she had been, having that vision or whatever it was hadn’t really told her a lot. Still, it had seemed to happen because she was so relaxed and having Matt make her tea and feed her biscuits had been good. “As long as you keep on supplying the digestives and as long as you promise to make them chocolate.”
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