The Book at the End of the World


Well they were right to look worried. Padraig was attired in eighteenth century dress and so was Branwell. They wore powdered wigs and Branwell had a very large painted beauty spot and he was clutching a lace handkerchief that he waved in front of his nose – in a very effeminate way it has to be said.

Padraig burst out laughing until he noticed the silky pantaloons he was sporting. Aghast he stared at Lola.

Both she and Bunty seemed unperturbed.

 Bunty noticed that she had lost considerable amounts of weight and shifted her amble bosom in a more comfortable stacked formation in her empire line gown.

“Don’t look now Eliza but Mr Darcy and his companion is observing us.” she said but couldn’t for the life of her think why.

“Lola produced a fan from somewhere among her gown and expertly flicked it open.

“I care not  for his roving eye! what impudence!” responded Lola before she could utter a rebuke to Bunty for acting so oddly.

Lola and Bunty clasped their hands over their mouths. something was happening, they were in full Jane Austen mode, Padraig and Branwell seemed to have suffered an earlier time slip and were talking about the french revolution.

Bunty and Lola tried to talk sense but could only fall into almost prewritten words.

“Alas the library at Rosings is nothing compared to this predicament” said Lola desperately

“no indeed and how will we leave such a place” said Bunty her bosom heaving and almost breaking its tethers.

Branwell minced up, “Milady, may I assist you, you seem fatigued” he took her arm and Bunty obligingly fell into a swoon.

Not to be out done Padraig tried not to notice the slinky blue pantaloons and grasped Lola’s arm, “You must escape Madame Guillotine my lady, come with me and I will spirit you away from this charnel house.”

Lola started to giggle, Padraig was so earnest but his outfit was so out of character.

“That was it! Out of character! to break free they had to act out of their characters. She hoped Bunty would catch on.”

“Have you got a a a CAR! she forced the word out and then the world seemed to swirl and she became encased in a thick mist.

Bunty had come round from her swoon, Branwell was frantically waving his lace hankie at her and she saw Lola disappear after asking for a car.

“How odd, they didn’t have cars then, fancy Lola not knowing that.” Bunty mused as Branwell’s gaze became hypnotised by her bosom.

“Do you need a glass of water milady?” he said dreamily

Bunty had a flash of inspiration

“Pray sir I would be grateful for a large Gin and Tonic with ice and a slice” she fell to the ground as Branwell’s grip of her melted away and she slid into the same milky fog that had shrouded Lola.

Branwell stared at the ground, his Bunty had been there and then gone..

He shook his fist in the air

“If she wanted a G & T she only had to wait, I would have sent for a bucket full!” he shouted and then he too melted away.

Padraig kept turning around , people were disappearing in front of him,

“Lola! Lola! keep the red flag flying!” he shouted though no one knew why before the fog enveloped him as well.

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