The Secret Of The Silver Locket – Episode 33

OUTSIDE the house, Harry hailed the first cab that came along and gave the driver his Uncle Eddie’s address. He felt numb. Grace had found yet another obstacle for him to surmount and he’d run out of inspiration.

He’d seen the look in her eyes. She couldn’t hide it. She was tearing herself apart and he didn’t know how to help her.

He had one more card up his sleeve. Back at his uncle’s, he knew exactly what he must do.

Grace’s natural mother must be allowed a chance to explain the missing link in this chain of events. She, above anyone else, could convince the daughter she’d been forced to give away, that she must put herself first now and not worry about other people.

Uncle Eddie left Harry alone with the telephone. Harry asked the operator for the Edinburgh number he knew off by heart and stood, drumming his fingers on the carved walnut telephone table. The moment he heard Iona’s gentle voice across the miles, he felt his whole being thrum with hope.

Swiftly, Harry explained Grace’s reaction to the letter she’d received. He sensed Iona’s anguish as she sucked in her breath. He described the poignant scene with Grace, not sparing any details.

“I’m so sorry, Harry. Tell me, would you describe my daughter as, maybe a tough cookie?”

Despite his unhappiness, he had to laugh. The expression sounded so weird, spoken in Iona’s cut glass tones.

“I guess,” he said. “She’s very stubborn and I could use some help here. For two pins I’d have whisked her away with me but she vanished before I got the chance.”

When she spoke, Iona’s tone was serious.

“I’ve caused her and now you too much unhappiness already. I can’t stand by knowing there are two broken hearts for which I’m to blame.”

“Apart from your own?”

He heard her stifled sob.

“Yes. Now this is what you have to do. I don’t for one moment think Grace would be prepared to speak to me if I were to telephone so I shall send her a telegram.”

He frowned.

“I’m afraid she’ll tear it up, being as she’s a very determined young lady.”

“Listen, Harry. I need to tell that young lady the truth around her birth. The real truth and not what she thinks she knows.”

“I don’t understand.”

“You will, once Grace tells you. I’ll send the telegram but you must be waiting close by and catch the boy delivering it, before he rings the doorbell.”

“I can’t do that! Can I?”

“Of course you can. Wait outside. Tip him five shillings. Ask him to ring and ask for Miss Rowena. She’s an ally, isn’t she?”

“Well, yes.”

“Tell the boy he must deliver the telegram into her hands and he must also tell Miss Rowena to take the message straight to Grace. Have you got that?”

“I have. I don’t know what you’re up to but I’ll do what you say.”

“I shall be thinking of you. Now, I have to go. We need to get on with this.”

Harry drove himself back to Manchester Square, found a place to park and positioned himself on a seat looking towards Seymour House. He intended keeping his eyes focused on the pavement opposite and the moment he saw that uniformed telegraph boy approach, he’d make his move. He felt like a character in a spy movie.

Eventually, he saw the boy riding a bicycle, freewheeling round the corner of the gardens and whistling a cheerful song. Harry shot to his feet and strode across the road, silver coins clasped in one hand.


Tracey Steel

Having worked on a number of magazines over the years, Tracey has found her perfect place on The Friend as she’s obsessed with reading and never goes anywhere without a book! She reads all the PF stories with a mug of tea close by and usually a bit of strong cheese too!