Together We Stand – Episode 52

“Well, at least that’s something to start with,” Inspector Williams said to Tanni as they finally left an exhausted and tearful Edith to Gwendolyn, who was busily sweeping her away with a promise of a hot bath and a warm bed.

“Do you think you’ll find Mr McGovern?” Tanni asked, accompanying him along the front towards the pier.

“Who knows? But one thing I’m sure of, he won’t get away with this. They rarely do.” He came to a halt. “Thank you for accompanying me, Tanni. I didn’t think you’d want this discussed in front of anyone.

“You might want to tell them one day, when you and your mam are ready. But for now I’d keep it to yourselves. Just until the dust settles.”

Tanni swallowed.


“Yes.” He turned to face her. “Given the facts, Tanni, I can only come to the conclusion that your father did not take his own life.

“Mr Samuel was incapacitated for a long time from his wounds. He rarely left his room for the last years of his life. He would never have met Edith’s grandfather.”

“But you think Dad recognised him?”

“I’m sure he did. From what I can learn, it seems McGovern moved his family and his business here expressly to retrieve that message in any way he could.

“He must have left it in the picture wagon, and never been able to go back to find it. It didn’t matter while Mr Samuel was alive, but once he was dead . . .”

“Someone might have stumbled on it.”

“Exactly. Or at least the fear would always have been there. He was planning to stand for Parliament at the next election. He had the money and the influence.

“I’ve no doubt he would have been successful, and very useful to his masters – his real masters, that is. One hint of what he had once been would have destroyed all that.

“I’ve no doubt that, if recognised, he would have been ruthless. I am certain that your father knew that, Tanni, and that he died trying to protect you.”

“Thank you,” Tanni whispered, swallowing back the tears.

He patted her hand.

“I wanted you to know as soon as possible.” He smiled. “I’m afraid I must leave you. I’ve a manhunt to organise, and Mari’s husband to bring home on the first boat possible. But I shan’t leave you alone.”

He nodded to where Henry was waiting.

“Henry doesn’t know anything you do not wish to tell him, but I did warn him he might find himself required to restore a young lady’s spirits.

“In any way he might see fit,” he added, as Henry joined them. “Now, if you’ll excuse me . . .”

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.