‘I went to visit Grandmama,
as I always did after market day.
I knocked, rattled, brayed at the door.
Yet Grandmama didn’t answer!
Much to my dismay.
So I crept in the backdoor
and I screamed when I saw
a twisted bloody carcass,
amidst a dreadful mess,
scattered all over Grandmama’s kitchen floor.
That’s why Grandmama hadn’t answered
It was Her on the floor, you see?
And my Grandmama had;
a fractured jaw;
several bite wounds;
a crushed pelvis;
and a broken knee.
“Oh Grandmama. What BIG trouble we’re in”
I whispered in her remaining ear.
A gruff voice from the doorway said,
“No shit kid.
Clearly that’s clear.”
I won’t detail what followed,
except to say, Wolf had planned days “filled with fun”.
But I got my own back on him,’
Red explained with a mischievous smile,
‘I died before he was done!
And the rest is history
or so I’m led to believe.
Wolf told the lie:
“A beast ate Red and Granny up!”
I fear my parents still grieve.’
‘Wolf wrapped Red’s body,’ explained Mouse,
‘in one of Grandma’s shawls.
The first lost girl to be taken away
And buried between hollow walls.
The very first citizen of Plasterboard Falls.’
‘That’s my story’,
said the girl in the red cloak.
‘Now you have to tell us,
how it was that you came to croak.’
Brick girl looked around at the faces
of the strangers who want to know her shame.
‘I, I, I,’ faltered Brick Girl,
‘…I can’t even remember my name!’
‘Never mind all that
you look dazed m’dear,’
said the one known as Mary,
‘I suspect you have only just got here?’
‘Questions and stories can wait,’
said Mary, whilst glancing at Red.
‘There’ll be plenty of time for that.
But for now she needs rest – in bed!’
Mary took Brick Girl’s hand
and led her away from the others.
‘I’ll help look after you,’ said Mary,
‘we can play Daughters & Mothers.
Duck under this timber frame
and you’re in our bedroom.’
Brick Girl couldn’t help but think:
a dormitory for dead girls is actually a tomb!
‘You can use my bed,’ offered Mary
‘I don’t sleep much these days.’
Brick Girl sat on the mattress.
It was a prickly sack filled with hay.
‘Thanks Mary,’ said Brick Girl,
‘you have been really kind.’
‘That’s okay,’ smiled Mary,
‘I really don’t mind.
Girls who come to Nowever
have been through quite an ordeal.
It’s best you take it easy,
til we see how you feel.
If you need anything,
give me a shout.
I’ll do whatever I can
to help you out.
But get your head down
and have a good sleep.
You could do what I do,’ suggested Mary,
‘try counting sheep.’
Brick Girl lay down.
Her limbs felt like lead.
The discomfort of the bed was nothing,
when compared to becoming dead.
As soon as she closed her eyes
sleep consumed her soul,
taking Brick Girl to a place full of dreams
of the life she could no longer own.
She dreamt of Mummy.
She dreamt of Daddy.
Playing with baby brother Thomas.
And her dolly called Mandy.
Her friends at school.
Doing well in class.
The summer walks she would take.
And the green smell of grass.
Mummy’s lovely cooking.
Daddy’s burnt disasters.
The time she fell from the slide.
And six summer weeks spent in plaster.
All these lovely thoughts.
All these lovely times.
They’re what make life worth living.
chapter 4 to follow soon…