I scoured the telephone directory. Elizabeth’s
relations were probably fictitious, because there
were no entries at all. I despaired of contacting
my girl. I thought of confronting Dan, but he
seemed in a fey mood. I honestly wondered if
Dan had despatched his daughter to an institution
for fallen girls. In which case, Elizabeth would be
locked away from me. I spoke to Mother. She
offered little consolation. There was no point
staying down in Devon, if I couldn’t get to Elizabeth.
I prayed she’d phone me. But my mobile was
stubbornly silent. Mother told me to pack my bags.
We were going home. It was an awful end to
things. Disconsolately I filled my haversack.
I pleaded with Margaret to pass on any news
to me. She nodded. I climbed in the car. We drove.

Author: Robert James Berry

Poet & Novelist