By Robert Goddard
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Extra resources for Set in stone
And now here I was, fifteen years on, facing the kind of future I'd never imagined, sure of nothing, except that it wasn't going to look after itself. ' 'Sorry. I seem to have had trouble concentrating since it happened. Tell me about the new house. We were surprised you moved. ' 'Nothing. ' Some of the sparkle that had been missing from her eyes since your death returned as she spoke. ' 'Otherways. ' 'Unusual house. It dates from just before the First World War. The architect designed it to be full of surprises.
It would have been a swiftly forgotten relief to see you emerging from the trees ahead of me, but you didn't. I turned back then, knowing you could have taken one of several routes through the woods. Besides, you might just as easily have gone the other way, down to Duckpool Beach. It made more sense to return home. I saw the police car as I turned into the drive. In that instant, anxiety became alarm. I hesitated, then strode towards the car. A policeman was sitting in the driving seat, talking on his radio.
I started back an hour or so later and made it to Kilkhampton about six. I stopped at the New Inn for a drink and phoned you again from there, thinking you might want to join me. The sun had been hot enough to give you a thirst, but now there was the first cooling hint of evening in the air - our favourite time of the day. Still no answer, though. I finished my drink and left. You weren't in the garden. You weren't at home at all. But your car was in the garage and your briefcase was in the study.