Chapter 24 Nan plays a game

‘Hoist with his own petard’. Nan had heard that somewhere and as she watched the huge Pastor climb back into bed she thought more about it. If it means give him enough rope and he’ll hang himself and if it means him, Nan thought, then it is really appropriate.

“Now then Reverend” she said to the Pastor’s enormous backside. “You just settle yourself down an ah’ll fix thi sum o’ this soup”

“It is Pastor, I’ll thank you to remember” said the Pastor, gathering his ragged courage to himself and keen to claim back his lost dignity.

“Oh, aye. I know that. Never mind all that. Neh then, put thisell raind outside o’ this. cos tha are lookin a bit peaked”. With that she handed him the bowl.

Both stared at each other for several seconds as Nan deliberately withheld the spoon.

“Oh, tha’ll be wanting this then?” Finally handing it over “An don’t get it all dain thysel either”. First point to me I think, she thought.

Finally achieving just enough backbone to make himself speak, the Pastor began, “Just what is it you want, Madam?” As Nan fixed him with a baleful, Medusa eye the stem of his newly grown courage seemed to whither and die on the vine of its brief blooming.

“What is it I want? What is it?” suddenly shouted the old woman, spittle flying from her mouth and dentures clacking. “What the bloody hell do you care?. You care about yourself and nowt else. Not even your God does for you. Not even all the poor sods that live in this forsaken hole, that you are supposed to help. As long as you have your wine and your fancy food and your nothing to do with nobody, then the rest of us can go hang”.

The Pastor was frozen in mid spoon as this grey little harridan from the deepest of Beelzebub’s seven hells continued her sudden and unexpected tirade.

“I want you, that’s what I want. I want you to get off your fat sloppy arse and do something for a change”. Nan seemed suddenly to deflate like a pricked balloon. When she spoke again it was in a calmer, softer voice and the Pastor noticed she continued to forget her dialect.

“What I want is for you to find out what’s troubling my lad. My precious little one. Something, I don’t like and I don’t know what, or where, has stirred itself up and it involves my little lad and I don’t like that. No, not one bit”.

Now the Pastor thought, with a certain, instant glee, the boot is on the other whatever. You, high and mighty, who can handle anything. You who have the whole bloody village in the palm of your grubby little bottle washing hands. Now you want something from me. It is all different, now, isn’t it? Now I can get what I want.

This was going to be absolutely splendid, he thought, a wonderful, satisfying victory. Until the actual pyric nature of his triumph hit him with some considerable force.

She actually wants me to sort him out, he panicked. Oh God, him and his blasted egg. She really wants me to go against HIM. The bloody fool. As if I would have any part of a chance and after what he has done to me already!

What he actually nervously said was " Now, now then Madam, there is no need to fuss yourself. I am quite sure that all will be well without the intervention of the church. God does look after his own. a sparrow, a lily of the field you know. in the Bible…." He trailed away as he looked at Nan’s face.

What he thought again was I need the pot and I am going to piss myself, right here, right now and in this bed.

Nan watched the incoming spring tide of emotions cross the clergyman’s face in waves of beetroot red and puce. Intent on keeping a straight face she thought, point, and match to me, I do believe.

Chapter 24 Nan plays a game


Joined January 2008

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