Serve It With Floss

by Colin Devonshire – colin@dark-novels.com

“Hi, Mr Perkins, your father is in his room.”

“Is he okay? No dramas?”

“He is fine.”

“Thanks, I’ll go and see him. Oh, my son is in the garden with one of your carers. Can you show him the way to his grandad’s room when he’s ready?”

“Of course. Have a pleasant visit,” the nurse smiled and bustled down the corridor.

“Hello dad, how are you feeling today?”

Silence followed by a grunt, “I don’t know why you are here.”

“Dad, please, do we have to go through this each day I come?”

“Please open the window, I can’t smell the flowers.”

John Perkins smiled and pushed the windows wide.

“Beautiful day dad, the sun is shining.”

“I can tell when the sun is out even with these eyes.”

The grey orbs could detect changes in light, but not much else.

“Yes dad, can you smell the roses down there?”

“I can list the flowers by smell. Who are you again?”

“Your grandson is here today. He is growing fast and will start school next term. He is very excited about it, please say pleasant things about school.”

“What is his name?”

“His name is Paul. Here he is.”

A timid lad was hiding behind a green uniformed lady. Left and right she moved, young Paul remained behind her.

The old man suddenly beamed, “I can smell candy-floss!”

Photo by Brett Sayles on Pexels.com

“Where did you get that, it’s bad for your teeth,” said son to grandson.

“One of our residents loves it, her daughter always brings a stick when she visits. Unfortunately, the lady is unwell. Young Paul was in the right place at the right time,” the lady explained.

“Once in a while won’t hurt, I guess?”

The lady smiled and led Paul to his father.

“Can I have a taste?” said the old man.

Paul carefully placed the stick in his grandfather’s hand.

A grin spread across his face as he breathed in the sweet aroma.

“Let me tell you a story, young man. Come and sit next to me.”

A gentle breeze blew the curtain as the old man drifted back in time.

“I was a little older than you when I first thrilled at the travelling fair. It came to our village every summer. My granny had saved up a jar full of coppers which she emptied into my jacket’s pockets. I can feel the weight of those old pennies pulling me down now. Off we went to the common, I could feel the excitement growing as we neared the fairground. The first thing I spotted was the helter-skelter. ‘Can I can I’, I asked. ‘It’s your money’, she said. I raced off to join the queue of boys and girls all waiting their turn.”

His grandfather’s every word entranced Paul.

Photo by picjumbo.com on Pexels.com

“It was while I was looking at the children sliding round and round, that I got a whiff of heaven. A huge lady was spinning a stick in a vat of pink sugar. When she finished her creation, a cloud of rose-coloured candy-floss was presented to a pig-tailed young lass, she skipped away. I no longer wanted to clamber up the stairs up to the top of the ride, I wanted the pink treat.”

Son, and grandson were speechless, entranced by the speech, that summer day all those years ago had started a train of thoughts they would never forget. Young Paul pinched a hand full of sticky floss, bringing delight to his grandfather’s face.

“I was standing, holding my prize, staring at the dodgems when my granny grabbed my hand and led me to the stepped rim of the circuit. The rumble of the wheels, the squeals of excitement and the thrill of the chase was all too much for a young boy, I had to have a go.”

The small audience grew as two of the nurses heard him talk at length for the first time since he arrived at the care home. Soon the room filled with residents and more staff as people crept in to hear more.

“I fell in love with the dodgems. Every year when the fair came, I worked for ‘Old Pikey’ the owner of the ride. My job was to knock at neighbouring houses and collect newspapers which were used to clean the ‘cars’. In exchange for a pile of newsprint, I handed them tokens for free rides. My wage was also tokens, but I also got free candy-floss. The candy-floss lady was ‘Old Pikey’s’ wife. My mind is drifting away from the dodgems, just as they skidded across the steel floor. That lady always smelled sweet but her husband smelled of fish,” he grunted at the thought.

The afternoon’s tea trolley pulled up outside and offered a steaming cup to all inside, the bedroom had filled with intrigued listeners.

“It was then I met your grandmother.”

Paul’s hair was ruffled by shaky fingers, his head now rested on his grandfather’s chest.

“‘Old Pikey’ had a daughter, he kept her away from the ragamuffin customers and workers. I included. We had no idea about her, we didn’t know she existed. One day I was delivering papers, the door to the caravan opened a little, a slender finger signalled me to go near. I crept over, ‘Take me to the bus stop please,’ I heard whispered from behind the door.”

He stopped talking, frozen in time and deep in thought. He shook his head, then slowly and confidently continued his race on the memory circuit.

Photo by Harrison Haines on Pexels.com

“She was just fifteen, I was fifteen going on sixteen. She told me she wanted to run away. Her father and mother kept her locked away, she didn’t go to school and had no friends. She had watched me each year when the fair arrived on the common. She wanted to speak to me, but couldn’t get her nerve up. Until that incredible life-changing day. She was beautiful. I was in love.”

Again the storyteller drifted, lost in ancient memories. The audience transfixed by his tale. Holding their breath until he continued. This from a resident who didn’t speak more than a handful of words.

“We ran away, we went to Brighton, thinking we would find work. It wasn’t to be. We had nowhere to live and were starving. My mum allowed us to return. The police had been to the house and scared the life out of her with talk of kidnap and the like. We were both sorry for all the distress we caused. Sally fell pregnant, we had a hastily arranged marriage, and I found a job. John here was born, fit and healthy. All was well until one day there was a knock at the door. It was a Sunday, my mum was at church. I opened the door and smelt candy-floss.”      

 Tears ran down his cheeks.

“I never saw her again. Her sweet-smelling mother dragged away her. Her father punched me, then used a tool from the dodgems and poked my eyes out. Sally was screaming as she was frogmarched away. Years later ‘Old Pikey’ died and Sally tracked me down. She had sold the fair and came to live with our son, yes, John you, and my mum.”

A burst of applause shattered the silence. An old man wondered what all the noise was for? Why were the people in his room? And who was on his bed?

If you enjoyed that, you may like my full-length novels?

Not Far Enough From Worries (No Worries Book 1) by [Colin Devonshire]
$0.99

A drug lord fathers his lesbian niece’s child, but not in the usual way! 
Set in Thailand late 1980s. Action, fun, romance, and tears. Breathtaking violence and tender moments add to a fast-paced read. Two young and gullible Englishmen move to Hua Hin to start a new life in the tropical heat. Along the way, they meet a dodgy Dutch ship’s engineer, two lovely French girls who are more interested in dogs than romance. A tall Welsh man with a chequered history of drug abuse, but a unique skill of mixing things to make other things. This talent gets the attention of seriously evil people. A lesbian newspaper reporter rides a powerful motorbike has an important family secret. The whole story unfolds in an action-packed finale.

Worry No More: Thai Thriller (No Worries Book 2) by [Colin Devonshire]
$3.99

Set in Hua Hin and Bangkok, Thailand. Horror with suspense and a touch of humour. The tourist town of Hua Hin is considered as a quiet place where nothing happens. Don’t you believe it! How can Thai twins become Siamese twins? You will have to think about that. No need to feel sorry for them, they like eating people! Meet Randy, an American who has a problem with split personalities. A mother and son team of debt-collectors have a nasty habit of setting fire to their victims. Camilla, the ex-reporter lesbian, is central to most of the action. Would she really give her daughter away? Any movie fans out there? Do you know of 1932 black and white classic, ‘Freaks’? A casino owner has a dream, to remake the film in Bangkok. It is not easy, you need some deformed actors and real Siamese twins. Camilla can solve most things. 
Are there any ‘nice’ characters in this book? Well yes. Skylab is a darling.

Children With No Worries: Do Children Scare you? by [Colin Devonshire]
$3.99

Aren’t children lovely? Most are. 
Philippa’s mother was killed. Philippa didn’t care. She now lives with her ‘half-brother’ Nick, a French lady and a large dog. They all live in a beach house in Hua Hin.
An English film make-up expert comes to Thailand to enjoy a second honeymoon with her husband. To say he has an ‘eye’ for the ladies is true, in more ways than one.
Gail is naturally upset when her husband goes off to enjoy his holiday without her. The children decide he needs to learn a lesson. Was he being set up for murder? The victims all lose a body part. Is there a message hidden in the deaths?
Skylab, fresh from the temple, along with her boyfriend, Kev, set about finding out. They team up with a friendly Thai detective to solve these crimes. 
The action moves from Hua Hin to Pattaya for a fast, hard-hitting surprise. Horror when you don’t expect it!

We Have More Worries: Thai Thriller (No Worries Book 4) by [Colin Devonshire]
$3.99

A twisted young man has dreams, one is to be straight. People suffer. His grandfather would not accept anything which goes against his Far Right beliefs. His second wish means baby girls must be killed. It is raining in Thailand, a monsoon hits land and upsets his plans. Deep in a cave, kidnapped baby girls wait. Parts of these children will be used to further evil. Kev and Skylab are expecting their first child, a girl. They are drawn into a chase to stop the horror and to save the child inside. 
A god-fearing backpacker, Debbie, is swayed by the handsome monster to assist him in deadly acts. Her parents fly from the UK to find out what has happened to her. They need Kev and Skylab to help. Little did they know all the crimes were linked. Is the strange Burmese girl holding the key to unravelling the mystery?

Published by dark-novels.com

Born in England before The Beatles became famous. I worked in the printing and allied trades, starting as a compositor, anyone remembers those? Eventually grafting as an editor. Twenty years on a lifestyle magazine. With my wife and children, we have lived in Thailand for over thirty years, and love it. Now? I write thrillers, with a touch of humour. 'No Worries' series, book number one, 'Not Far Enough From Worries' book two, 'Worry No More' published at the end of 2018. 'Children With No Worries' was released in August 2019. All published with amazon.com/author/colindevonshire Book number 4, as yet unnamed is being written, it's about Thai black magic. Dark thrills!

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