I was told that it was up to me to tell the story. I didn’t want to have to do it. Let the dead stay dead, that’s what I was thinking.
I have this Scottish Play thing that I learnt at school, if you want to mention the true name of the Scottish play, you’re asking for trouble. The name brings with it its own bounty of mayhem and bad luck. That may have been the case, but when it got to the exams I would have to mention it by name or risk not doing so well. In retrospect, the exams took care of themselves or, should I say, they were taken care of.
So, this is my creative writing assignment that has been set by an old teacher and friend.
“Tell them everything about the dark days,” he instructed me. “Tell every last detail. Don’t leave anything out. Don’t leave anything to chance.”
I knew what he meant. Nothing should be forgotten, nothing left out. It’s the folds in the memory that can let us down, the back of the settee of our minds. If we forget, lest we forget, it may happen again.
So, where do I begin? Perhaps the start would be a good place.
Dad had died and Mum was struggling. His death had been put down to suicide which meant that the mortgage was still to be paid. Before he died, we were moderately well off. We never struggled, lived in a good house in the better part of the city, went to a good, striving to be outstanding school, wore decent clothes, ate home-cooked meals, had nice friends, and never got to mix with the rougher elements of society. We were what was called middle-class.
Dad’s death changed that.
It seemed that only weeks had passed since his funeral that we were preparing to move. Mum had to sell the house. She said something about the housing market not being in a good place so took money from one of these companies that said they would buy your house just like that (below market-value).
She dressed it up as a fresh start; a new opportunity to go to a new school and meet new friends; a chance to see the rest of the city. It certainly was an eye-opener. But that’s enough of that David Copperfield back-story nonsense.
It all began as we moved into the new house.