‘Quickly girls .. honestly, Edith, where on earth have you been?’
‘Coming mother! I couldn’t find Tilly.’
‘Pah!’ Maud dragged the deckchairs into a vague semi-circle, facing out to sea. Always late. Always dragging their heels. What that finishing school had been teaching them, goodness only knew. It wouldn’t have happened in her day. She lowered herself gingerly onto the faded striped cotton, never quite trusting the slats to hold the frame and watched her daughters’ progress across the sand. The tide was withdrawing. For now.
‘Oh good, you found Henry.’ There was less need to shout as the trio rounded the rocks to the cove Maud loved to visit. ‘What’s in the box Tilly?’
‘Mama, I came across it in the attic. I remember you saying we could look through them one day. Henry said we could bring them down, didn’t you?’ Tilly’s sixteen year old eyes turned to search their butler’s face for reassurance.
‘I did indeed. But I also took the liberty of bringing the parasols to keep the spray from damaging your letters Ma’am.’
He watched Tilly hand the box to her mother and noted a faint smile spread across Maud’s face.
‘How very thoughtful you are Henry, as always. Whatever would I do without you?’
(my little monthly treat to myself … a Jack Vettriano-inspired piece of flash fiction .. I hope you enjoyed it! To find out more about the man behind the artist, check out his link here)