The Secret of Trefusis Cove – Episode 34

“If we put all this plaster into the tin bath we can carry it outside and get rid of it,” Betty suggested.

“Shall we bury it?”

“Good idea, Val.”

Aircut took a broom from a cupboard in the kitchen and began to sweep.

“Horrendous mess this stuff makes once it’s disturbed.” He coughed.

They worked together with dustpans, brushes and mop until most of the plaster was cleaned up. The wall behind the worktop was in a sorry state. The large stones with which the cottage had been built showed through the existing plasterwork.

Betty sat down by the table. She took a duster from her pocket and cleared a layer of white dust from the shade of the oil lamp.

Sally, who had volunteered to clean the cooker, lit the gas and placed the casserole inside.

“Ahh.” Aircut licked his lips. “I could just do with a dollop of that.”

That made them all laugh and things didn’t seem so bad after all.

Dust was everywhere but they managed to make the place spick and span by the time their meal was ready.

Betty lit the old oil lamp and Aircut found wood and laid a fire in the little stove.

They sat around the table in the lamplight with bowls and spoons, finishing up Sally’s casserole with thick slices of crusty bread and butter. The pavlova had had to be abandoned due to dust and sour cream.

“My, that makes the world come right again.” Aircut rubbed his tummy.”

Betty filled the kettle and put it on the hob to heat up for the dishwashing Val and Sally insisted on doing.

Aircut and Betty kept the stove going. They talked about plasterers and decorators, of whom Aircut had a wide knowledge.

“Best to leave it rough as it was. But all the old plaster will have to come off to make way for the new.”

“All that mess again!” Betty sighed.

“There’s a big lump of loose plaster here, over the taps,” Val called. “It doesn’t look as if it would take much to move it.”

There came a splash and a thump. Betty and Aircut ran into the kitchen where Val and Sally were gazing into the washing-up bowl at a big lump of plaster. There was a huge hole in the wall where it had come loose and landed amid the bubbles.

Abigail Phillips

Abbie is the newest member of the fiction team at the "Friend." She loves how varied the role is - every day is different and there is always a new story to read. She is keen to work closely with established writers and discover new writers, too.