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Thread: The Peverell Resilience (Part One)

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    The Peverell Resilience (Part One)

    When the financial meltdown occurred, the Peverell girls found themselves left high and dry by events far outside of their control.
    But the architect of their dire situation was not the greed of bankers or the ineptitude of politicians but the stupidity of the Peverell men.
    Trevelyan, the patriarch of the family and his brother Kenwyn had over invested in high risk stocks and shares and lost virtually everything, and if that wasn’t bad enough they then proceeded to commit fraud in an attempt to recover their losses.
    As a result along with the family silver Trevelyan lost his mind and was committed to the asylum while Uncle Kenwyn took all the remaining cash he could get his hands on and disappeared, and the girls believed it unlikely he’d ever be seen again.

    The Peverell family had been Cornish land owners for centuries, but Peverell Hall and the majority of the land it sat on had to be sold to pay off the huge debts resulting from the brothers dubious stock market speculating.
    Trevelyan’s eldest daughter Morwenna Singleton was the hardest hit by events.
    Since the premature death of her husband, Leonard, in a riding accident when she was 30, she had made running the Hall her entire life.
    Also displaced by the sale of the hall was Talwyn who along with her husband Chris Patterson ran the estate farm.
    Karensa also derived her livelihood from the estate as she was the jack-of-all-trades, hands on general maintenance handywoman.
    The youngest sister Demelza was the only one that lived and worked away from home as a partner in a firm of accountants but she planned her return when the Peverell’s began circling the wagons.
    Under the circumstance’s no one would have blamed them if they had all gone mad themselves or for signing themselves into the asylum but the sisters were made of sterner stuff.

    The family was not entirely impoverished, they still owned a number of properties and small farms in the village of Peverell St Just.
    In fact they owned the whole village and its environs.
    However the only reason they didn’t sell their holdings there was that they were unable to do so.
    It was because of a clause in their great-grandfather Perran’s will which prohibited the sale of any of the land or properties, but they were able to derive an income from them however.
    Perran was very ill when he made the unusual stipulation in a codicil which was to prevent his brother Yestin, who was of unscrupulous character, from plundering the inheritance of Perran’s children who were at the time not of an age to manage their own affairs.
    It had come to Perran’s attention that Yestin was planning to sell the village lock stock and barrel the moment his brother was in the ground.
    It was said that Yestin flew into a rage when the will was read and had to be physically restrained from throttling the solicitor.
    It was a stroke of genius on the old man’s part, it was just a shame that the estate proper eventually ended up in the hands of Trevelyan and Kenwyn.

    It was through Peverell St Just that matriarchal Morwenna now saw her family’s salvation and her sisters rallied around her.
    Peverell St Just wasn’t a large village and it and its environs consisted of 42 cottages, 3 houses, 2 large farms and a smaller one, a pub, a church, a rectory, a village shop and a railway station.

    The Rector of St Just’s church was Howel Peverell who was Morwenna’s cousin.
    And it was at the Rectory, with him, his wife Jane and their 3 year old son Talan that she initially directed operations.
    Apart from being the Rector of the parish Howel was also the rent collector and de facto estate manager.
    “Are you going to take over?” Howel asked
    “Yes” she replied
    “Thank God for that” he said
    “Don’t you like the job?” Morwenna asked
    “Definitely not” he said “I know my true vocation”
    They spent half a day going over the books and the list of outstanding repairs and the vacant properties.
    “I think the girls and I will take that one” she said pointing at a spot on a map of the village.
    “It needs some work” Howel said “In fact it needs a lot of work”
    “Karensa will soon get it ship shape” she replied “and then we’ll get out of your hair”

    The detached Dolcoath house, Morwenna had chosen was originally built for one of the mine managers along with its neighbour, another detached property called Hingston House, and the two houses along with the Rectory were set apart from the miners cottages.
    Karensa arrived the next day and quickly got down to work and two weeks later she had made the house habitable enough for her and Morwenna to move in.

    Meanwhile Talwyn and husband Chris had started work on the much neglected Poldark Farm and lived in a caravan on site while Karensa continued to work on the house.
    The youngest sister Demelza was the last to arrive, five weeks later than the others as she had been working abroad, in Devon.
    She was the only one who had a job in the real world so had to work a months’ notice.
    Karensa was still working on the house aided and abetted by a local lad called Alan Amos.
    As a result of the ongoing work Demelza had to stay at the rectory and it was there that they had the first big family meeting.

    When all the Peverell’s were gathered, Demelza kicked off the meeting
    “Well I’ve gone over the books with a fine toothcomb and it could be worse” she began
    “As of this moment we have more money coming in than we have going out”
    “I sense a but coming” Morwenna said
    “But there isn’t enough to support us all” Demelza said “not for long anyway”
    “So what do we do?” Pongo asked, Pongo was Chris Patterson’s nickname, well-earned due to his propensity to deliver rancid foul smelling silent farts.
    “You and Tal can concentrate on Poldark Farm and growing produce to feed us”
    Morwenna said
    “That won’t save us much” Karensa said
    “No, but every little helps” Demelza said
    “But what will make a difference is maximising our rental income on the vacant properties”
    “How many vacant properties are there?” Karensa asked
    “There are 14 empty cottages and the railway buildings” Demelza replied
    “The problem is we don’t have the money to fix them up” Said Karensa “not even to a basic standard and we don’t even have enough to finish the work on Dolcoath House”
    “Well I can help with that” Demelza said
    “How?” asked Morwenna
    “I’ve just sold my house in Plymouth” she replied
    “No we can’t let you do that Dem” Morwenna said
    “Nonsense Wen” she responded “it was bought with Peverell money, so it’s only right it comes back to the Peverell’s”
    Demelza brooked no more discussion on the matter and as a result the money was put to good use.

    All that year and all of the next the Peverell’s worked hard to get the family finances back in shape.
    Karensa, Alan and a handful of local tradesmen completed the work on the 8 bedroom Dolcoath House before refurbishing the farmhouse at Poldark farm.
    They then moved on to complete the vacant cottages and were well on the way to doing the same to the railway station.
    With Talwyn and Pongo living in the farm house and the remaining Peverell’s moved in under one roof, Morwenna was ready to take in paying guests in the remaining rooms with the help of Demelza.
    It was Dem who set up the website and managed the advertising and the resulting bookings.
    Meanwhile Talwyn and Pongo worked all the hours God sent to get the small Poldark farm producing enough food for the family.
    Howel, The rector and his wife Jane also mucked in, in-between his church duties.
    And showing great resilience the Peverell rose phoenix like from the ashes of financial disaster.

    The village of Peverell St Just was first built in the 18th Century to house the tin miners of the area and the railway was built a hundred years later primarily to transport the tin Orr out of Cornwall for processing.
    The last local mine closed in 1934 and the railway soon followed.
    The rails were all removed for scrap metal to be used in the war effort at the start of World War Two.
    The buildings survived and over the following years were used for storage, mainly for the adjacent Poldark Farm as the station property backed onto it.
    The village suffered with the decline of mining and many residents moved away.
    Those who stayed turned to farming or fishing to earn a living and hung on by their finger ends.
    More moved away with the start of the war but others moved in to replace them as the RAF built a radar station on the headland two miles from the village and the operators were billeted in Peverell.
    Farming and fishing thrived in the post war years and the RAF’s presence remained in the area until the late 50’s when tourists arrived in force to replace them and the village fortunes changed again.

    And it was due to changing fortunes that led to the Peverell girls having to relocate themselves to Peverell St Just where they set about, if not to reverse then at least improve them.
    The only means at their disposal as they were unable to sell any of the properties was to maximise the rental income by renovation.
    This was not however a speedy process with their limited resources.

    By the Spring of the third year in St Just, Karensa and co had already finished the railway station, and the adjacent pump house and had just started converting the signal boxes into small holiday lets, they would be followed by the workshops, engine sheds and ancillary buildings which would all be converted to accommodations where possible.
    It was fortunate for the girls that the railway was already defunct by the time the railways were nationalized after the war and was not as a result part of the general compulsory purchase.
    Chiefly it meant they had more properties to rent of let, which was the baby of the family’s job, Demelza, to manage.
    Demelza Miller was 30 years old and recently returned from abroad, namely Plymouth where she was a partner in a firm of accountants, one of the partners being her ex-husband.
    She married Gary straight after university and they were married for two years and divorced for five before she returned to Cornwall.
    It was the sale of her house in Plymouth that filled the Peverell’s
    War chest.
    She had remained single after the divorce, it hurt her more than she would admit, and she had loved Gary and thought he was the one, so she was in no hurry to repeat her mistakes.
    Demelza was the same stature as her oldest sister Morwenna but was a slimmer version of her.
    She also had the tell-tale red hair of the Peverell’s and the striking Celtic blue eyes.

    With everyone in the family doing there bit, her role was for the most part far removed from her former professional life, although she did do the families accounts.
    In addition to the book keeping she also set up and maintained the website, did the advertising, the bookings and where necessary she worked with a local girl, Verity Small doing the housekeeping.

    It was quite fortuitous that the majority of the cottage lets were long term, which meant there was 100 percent yield on them.
    The holiday lets, though good, were by their very nature seasonal.
    Not that they had no tourists out of season, there were always the hardy types, rambling, climbing, twitching or fishing.
    She had done rather well with the web site, with virtual tours of the village and the lets and the surrounding country side.
    But even so a large number of properties were unoccupied for more than a third of the year.
    Demelza was doing her best to address that shortfall which was why she was particularly pleased that she had let the railway station within a week of its completion for a minimum of 12 months.

    The tenant to be, was a writer of crime fiction, famous by all accounts though she’d never heard of him, who wanted a change of scene to somewhere quiet and out of the way.
    It was the end of May when Demelza saw, through her office window, an unfamiliar yellow car pull up outside of Dolcoath House.
    She opened the desk draw and pick up some keys and then she went outside.
    “Mr Burrell?” she called as he got out of the car.
    “That’s me” he Replied
    He walked towards her and offered his hand and said
    “Nathan Burrell”
    “Demelza Miller” she said taking his hand
    “Everything is ready for you”
    “Excellent” he said
    “You can leave your car there for the minute, it will be quicker to walk from here”
    “Fine” he agreed “I could do with stretching my legs”
    Demelza led the way and Nathan Burrell followed and after a few minutes she asked
    “So are you a famous writer?”
    “Fairly” he replied “If you happen to like crime novels”
    “I see” she said
    “You don’t like crime novels then?” he said
    “Not really my thing” she confessed
    “I’m surprised you didn’t Google me then” Nathan said sensing a purpose to her line of questioning
    “Well I did actually” she confessed “And I was wondering if I might ask a favour”
    “Ask away” he said congenially
    “Well it would be a feather in our cap if we could mention you on the website” Demelza said hopefully “But I would quite understand it if you were hoping to keep a low profile”
    He laughed heartily in response and said
    “I think if I wanted to be inconspicuous I probably wouldn’t drive a yellow car”
    Demelza giggled in response to his comment just as they reached the converted railway station.
    The rails had long since gone and had been replaced by a private lane that ran from the village road up as far as the North signal box.
    “Here we are” she said and walked up on to the platform and unlocked the front door.
    The door would have originally opened into a storeroom but it was now the hall and everything else inside had changed too.
    The “Ladies” and “Gents” toilets had been knocked through into one bathroom, the ticket office was now the kitchen and the vestibule had French doors at each end and was now the dining room.
    “This is perfect” he said when she showed him the waiting room that had been converted into a small lounge.
    “It’s a bit snug” she said apologetically
    “Exactly, that’s just what it is the “Snug”” Nathan said “this is where I’ll spend most of my time”
    Demelza then showed him, what was once the station masters office, which was now the bedroom.
    “There is only the one bedroom” She said “but if you have guests then the pump house on the opposite side of the lane is available to let”
    “Ok that’s good to know” Nathan replied
    “Are you likely to have guests to stay?” she asked
    “More than likely” he replied “My publisher Richard will probably come down to make sure I’m working hard”
    “Oh he’s a tough task master then?” asked Demelza
    “He’s relentless” said Nathan
    “I see” she said
    “And of course Ruth will come down” he added
    “It that your wife?” She asked
    “No” he replied and laughed
    “Girlfriend then?” she said
    “No, Ruth is my sister” he explained “she’ll definitely be down to check up on me”
    Demelza unlocked the doors onto a small patio and beyond it where the old station car park used to be, was the semi-formal back garden full of spring flowers with raised beds made from old railway sleepers.
    “Wow that’s lovely” Nathan said “Did you do this?”
    “No way” She replied and laughed “I am useless with plants”
    “What even house plants?” he asked
    “Yes” she answered “I kill them all, they no nothing but drought or flood and then they die”
    “Oh dear, so who does have green fingers?” he asked
    “My sister Talwyn” Demelza replied “and my other sister Karensa did the conversion”
    “Another sister?” Nathan asked
    “Yes” she replied
    “How many of you are there?” He asked
    “Just the four” she replied

    About a week after Nathan had moved in Demelza had just finished showing a birdwatcher to the newly completed North Signal box and was on her way back to Dolcoath House.
    This took her past the station so she decided to call in and see if Mr Burrell was settling in ok.
    She hadn’t seen him since the day he arrived and she was surprised to find that she was disappointed about it.
    It surprised Demelza firstly because she didn’t believe in instant attraction and secondly because he wasn’t really her type.
    She liked tall, well-made men, big and cuddly, and Nathan was about her height and a bit scrawny.
    He wasn’t bad looking though and he had a good sense of humour and he was the same age as her.
    She knocked on the door and waited a moment and suddenly felt a little foolish and decided to go just as the door opened.
    “Mrs Miller! Come in” Nathan said “Just in time the kettle has just boiled”
    “Call me Demelza” she said “Thank you, I was just passing so I thought I’d see if you’d settled in ok”
    “Fine, fine” he said “come and have a cuppa, you’re just in time for elevenses”
    “Oh ok” Demelza said “Elevenses at 10 o’clock, how very decadent”
    “I like to be flexible” Nathan said
    “Unfortunately Morwenna runs a very tight ship and doesn’t allow impromptu refreshment breaks” Demelza said
    “Who is Morwenna?” Nathan asked as he poured the hot water
    “She’s my big sister and she’s very regimented” Demelza replied
    “She’s lovely though and she’s a brilliant cook”
    “What about you?” he asked as he put a mug in front of her
    “What do you mean?”
    “Are you a good cook?” he asked
    “Me? No, I burn water” she replied
    Nathan sat down opposite her and said
    “If you can’t cook and you kill plants, what can you do?”
    “I’m an accountant” she said proudly “so my forte is book keeping and now I do all the accounts for the business”
    “So your skill is that you can count?” said Nathan
    “No, my skill is that I can use a calculator” she said and laughed

    A few days later it was Demelza’s day off and as was her habit on such days she spent it walking the woodland down to the coastal path and then along the coast to Port Just and then back to the village.
    It was a well-worn route from her childhood that she had reacquainted herself with since her return.
    It was also her escape from the family, the business and the mundane.
    As she walked back through the village she was really looking forward to a coffee, she checked her watch and it was only half past two.
    Morwenna didn’t serve afternoon refreshment until four, so she decided to go and see Nathan and avail herself of the station buffet.

    She walked up the slope on to what used to be the platform that was now the front porch.
    Demelza knocked the door and it opened almost immediately
    “Hello Demelza” he said “Come in, do you want coffee?”
    “I thought you’d never ask” she said
    “Well you’re in luck” he said “the kettle has just boiled”
    “Your kettle has always just boiled” Demelza said and laughed
    After Nathan had made the drinks he suggested they sit out on the patio and after they settled themselves Dem asked
    “So how are you getting on with the writing?”
    “It’s going well” he replied
    “Not too quiet for you?” she quizzed
    “No, I wanted somewhere quiet” Nathan replied “I’m easily distracted you see”
    “I know” she said “but why here?”
    “I’ve always been fond of Cornwall” he replied somewhat unconvincingly “And I’ve also always had a hankering to live in a railway station”
    “That’s all very well but why not somewhere like California?” she asked
    “Well I like the four season climate” Nathan replied
    “Waking up to the same weather day after day would be a distraction in itself”
    “California isn’t reflective of the whole country” she persisted “There are other places to go, quiet places, that even have disused railway stations”
    “I just didn’t fancy it” he said
    “Don’t you like travel?” she asked “or is it something else”
    She noticed his discomfiture at her questions and thought for a moment to when she had googled him, she had seen pictures of him on his website in New York City at a literary awards event and she also recollected a picture of Nathan Burrell on board a ship with the Statue of Liberty in the background.
    “You travelled to New York on a Liner didn’t you?” she asked
    “Yes I did” he replied “A couple of times”
    “But you did it because you’re scared to fly” she announced
    “I wouldn’t say scared exactly” he responded in some discomfort
    “You wuss” she said and disintegrated into laughter

    Later on after she had calmed down, as she finished her third mug of coffee Nathan asked
    “So how come you’re not in a hurry today?”
    “It’s my day off” she replied
    “And this is the most exciting thing you could find to do on such a lovely day” he asked
    “Well I’ve been walking” she said
    “You can come with me next time, I promise it’s not scary”
    Nathan realised he was not going to easily live down his fear of flying and he similarly realised that it mattered to him what she thought of him.

    Over the next month Nathan was increasingly distracted by the fact that Dem hadn’t been around for coffee.
    He had thought on their last meeting they had made a connection and had even made a date of sorts.
    He tried to put it out of his mind and put it down to his innate inability to read women.
    One thing he was sure of was that his writing was suffering, what little there was of it.

    Nathan needn’t have worried, the reason she hadn’t been around was nothing to do with him.
    Her father Trevelyan had been rushed to hospital after he had suffered a suspected heart attack.
    The sisters all rushed to his bedside in Truro, his condition was serious but stable but the prognosis was uncertain.
    Despite what he had done he was still their father so they took it in turns to stay with him.
    So Morwenna and Talwyn did the first week and Karensa and Demelza took the second and so on.
    As a result of being short-handed and bookings at an all-time high, Things had been so busy that Demelza had not only been unable to visit Nathan for coffee but had even had to forgo her days off and her walk of freedom.

    By the middle of July Nathan had given up trying to figure out why he hadn’t seen Demelza, twice he had been to the office looking for her and on both occasions his trip proved fruitless.
    “Maybe she’s gone on holiday” he said to himself as he closed the front door on a rainy Thursday morning and he was on his way to the office for a third time in as many weeks.
    He walked briskly up the lane towards Dolcoath House and as he walked up the steps to the front door he caught sight of Demelza through the window and he suddenly got butterflies and he chastised himself for his foolishness.
    “You’re a grown man” he said to himself and opened the door.
    As soon as he stepped over the threshold Demelza turned to see who it was and her face lit up in recognition.
    “Hi Nathan” she said and beamed
    “Hello stranger” He responded “Have you been on your hols?”
    “No” she replied wanting to tell him the whole story but said instead
    “My dad was taken ill”
    “Oh God I’m sorry” He gushed “Is he ok?”
    “As he ever will be” she replied again holding back and then quickly changed the subject
    “So what brings you to my inner sanctum?” She asked “You’re way too early for coffee, our habits aren’t as liberal as you arty types”
    “I was hoping to rent the old pump house for a week” Nathan said
    “Oh ok” she said “this is where I get to show you that I can do more than just take impromptu coffee breaks”
    She turned her attention to her monitor and tapped something on the keyboard.
    “When did you have in mind?” she asked “We are pretty well booked at the moment”
    “Sometime in the next few weeks”
    “I can do the first week of August, if that’s any good” she offered
    “Perfect” he replied
    “And what name?” Demelza asked
    “Ruth Bunyon” He replied
    “Oh your sister?” she said
    “Yes she’s coming to check up on me and to make sure I’m eating properly and having regular bowel movements” Nathan replied and they both laughed
    “Is she older or younger?” Dem asked
    “10 years older” he replied “When our mum died Ruth took on the roll even though she was on 16”
    “She’s very special to you isn’t she?” she asked
    “Absolutely, she’s an amazing person, and she still mothers me even though she has a family of her own” he said
    “I look forward to meeting her” she said genuinely
    “Thank you” he said “perhaps the three of us go out for a meal together”
    “That would be lovely” Demelza said “but the nearest restaurant is 30 miles away”
    “Oh well come to mine then and I’ll cook” Nathan suggested
    “You can cook?” she said in total surprise
    “Come to dinner and find out” he said
    “Ok that would be lovely” she said and meant it
    Nathan was on his way out the door when he turned back and said
    “oh and while I remember, Could I also book a room here for the week after next for one night, any day is fine, in the name of Richard Pruitt?”
    “More family?” she asked
    “Publisher” he replied “coming to jolly me along”
    “Oh I see too many coffee breaks” Dem said
    “Talking of which will you be popping in?” he asked hopefully
    “Not this week I’m afraid, I have so much to catch up on”
    “Next week then” he suggested
    “Definitely” she replied “it’s a date”
    She blushed a little at her Freudian slip which Nathan noticed and set his butterflies off again.

    For the rest of the week Nathan knuckled down and made some significant progress on his writing and by the end of it he said to himself
    “That should take the wind out of Richards sails”
    On Friday Morning he was just contemplating a coffee break when there was a knock on the door.
    And too his surprise and delight it was Demelza
    “Good Morning” she said brightly
    “Hi” He said “I didn’t think I’d be seeing you this week”
    “I got my head down and by burning the midnight oil I caught up”
    She said “So I have earned a day off and as it’s such a lovely day, I thought you might like to join me”
    “Well as I too have been working hard I have also earned a day off so I’d love to” He replied “am I alright as I am?”
    He was wearing shorts and a polo shirt
    “Apart from the slippers” she replied and laughed

    She had felt guilty about not telling Nathan the whole story about her father’s illness so on the walk down to the coastal path she unburdened herself.
    Demelza told him of Trevelyan and Kenwyn’s mismanagement of the family funds, the fraud and the formers committal and the latter’s absconding and the consequences to the sisters.
    Each word came harder than the one preceding it as she drew them out into loose painful sentences.
    When she got to the part about having to give up her job, her house and her life to return to the village of her childhood she faltered so Nathan took her hand and kissed her as the Atlantic waves broke over the rocks below the coastal path.
    When they continued on their way Demelza gripped his hand tightly and the words flowed easily from her.

    Thirty three year old Karensa and her older sister Talwyn, although three years apart, could easily have passed for twins.
    They were smaller than their other siblings, leaner and wirery.
    Like her sisters she had the tell-tale red hair of the Peverell’s and the striking Celtic blue eyes.
    Where they differed however was that Karrie was always a tomboy and Tally was a girlie girl.
    When her sisters were all playing with dolls Karrie was playing football, climbing trees and riding her BMX.
    Karrie spent her teenage years with grazed knees while Tally had painted nails.
    But apart from not wearing frocks and dressing like a teenage boy she could also work with her hands.
    She built herself a tree house when she was eleven, without any adult help at all, but if there was something she didn’t know how to do she wasn’t afraid to ask.
    By the time she was 18 she could turn her hand to practically anything and she made a niche for herself working on the estate.
    But as competent as she was Karensa was inside a protective bubble on the estate that kept her safe in her comfort zone.
    For Karensa the financial collapse of the family had actually been the best thing that could have happened to her.
    She had been protected from the world but in truth Karensa was the best suited to cope with adversity, it actually made her stronger.
    When Morwenna had first spoken to her about making Dolcoath House habitable she found that she revelled in the challenge.
    And after the first full family meeting and she was given carte blanch to renovate the vacant stock as well as the station, signal boxes and press on with the out building conversions she was in her element.

    The first thing Karensa did before starting work on the house was to persuade a local lad called Alan Amos to work with her.
    She had worked with him a couple of times in the past on Estate jobs and she knew that between them they had all the necessary skills to get the job done no matter what problems might arise.
    And besides that she fancied the pants off him.
    He was a couple of years younger than her, six foot tall with dark curly hair and crystal blue eyes and she thought he was well buff.
    Apart from being fit he also knew about the local labour, who was good, who was bad and who was honest and who couldn’t be trusted.
    He also had a contact he could get cheap materials from, which was an added bonus as Demelza held the purse strings quite firmly.

    Alan and Karensa worked well as a team, she was a great planner and time manager and Alan knew how to get the best out of the labourers but they both got their hands dirty.
    Once Dolcoath House was completed Alan said he was off to Bristol for a few months on a shop fitting job.
    This was worse news than when she found out her father had lost his marbles.
    “Its three months guaranteed work and its good money too,” he said
    “Well I know I can’t match the money but I can guarantee a year’s work at least” Karrie said
    “Only if you and your sisters can make a go of it,” Alan said
    “We will,” she said resolutely
    The truth was he didn’t want to go to Bristol any more than she did, but he had to know that she wanted him to stay, he really liked her but he’d been hurt before and he wasn’t keen for it to happen again.
    He looked at her and the earnest expression on her face and said
    “Ok, I’ll give you a year and we’ll see how it goes”
    Her expression changed instantly and he had his answer.

    Over the next 12 months they saw each other at their best and their worst as they tackled first the cottage renovations and then the very tricky conversions.
    But as each problem presented itself with their combined grit they solved them one by one.
    But the one problem neither of them could solve was how to make the transition from work mates to lovers.

    Everyone else knew the disposition of their hearts, even the Rector, Howel, who was the least worldly person in the south west of England, knew they were a couple in waiting.
    He had tried to ask her out countless times but always bottled out at the last minute.
    There was always that niggling doubt in the back of his mind that if he asked her out and she said no then it would make things awkward between them and he might even have to leave.
    The same thought had crossed her mind as well but she had decided it was worth the risk but every time she was about to broach the subject they were interrupted either by one of her sisters or a labourer or the phone.
    Things were getting desperate, it was obvious to her that he was never going to ask her and it seemed that fate was conspiring to prevent her from asking him.
    But it all came to a head at the progress meeting at Dolcoath House in March.
    It had been two years since they had returned to Peverell St Just and were just starting their third.
    Morwenna gave a matriarchal speech praising everyone’s efforts,
    Talwyn and Pongo gave a status report on Poldark farm and its expected yield for the coming year, Karensa and Alan updated everyone on the timetable for the remaining renovation work, Howel spoke at length on their spiritual wellbeing and Demelza gave a statement on the finances and pronounced them to be solvent.
    There were mutterings of approval and then under any other business Morwenna stood up and said.
    “I would like to say in addition how proud I am of everyone here for pulling together, and I don’t want to single out anyone for special treatment but I have two tickets here for the multiplex in Truro, and the lucky recipients is” She paused briefly for effect
    “Karensa”
    A round of applause rippled around the room
    “Um thanks” she said bemusedly
    “Alan” Morwenna said in her most fearsome voice
    “Yyyes” he stammered
    “Are you free Saturday night?” she asked
    He was a little afraid now and was expecting Morwenna to ask him out
    “Yes” he replied
    “Good” she said “You are now going to the pictures”
    “Ok” he said and gave Karensa a sideways glance to which she shrugged in response
    “Ok everyone Karensa and Alan are going out on Saturday night” Wen announced “Together!”
    “Hooray” Tally said as Alan smiled at Karrie who returned his smile and blushed
    “Halleluiah” Demelza said as she looked on
    “The Lord be praised” Howel added

  2. #2
    TheFairyDogMother kiz_paws's Avatar
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    Good writing, Biggus!
    I am enjoying this story very much.
    On to Part Two.
    Our task must be to free ourselves by widening our circle of compassion to embrace all living creatures and the whole of nature and its beauty
    ~Albert Einstein

  3. #3

  4. #4
    Registered User fudgetusk's Avatar
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    A few sentences to rethink and correct...
    >>“Yes” she answered “I kill them all, they no nothing but drought or flood and then they die”
    >>The sisters all rushed to his bedside in Truro, his condition was serious but stable but the prognosis was uncertain.

    Two buts? Clunky.

    >>And too his surprise and delight it was Demelza

    Other than that not a struggle to read. Not my kind of thing, whatever it turns out to be. Maybe you could tell us the genre so we can judge it better?
    Poldark? there's a famous use of the name Poldark. I think it is a book or a tv show. Maybe change it.
    A few too many characters for me. If you have a lot of characters make them stand out more. I wasn't too keen on the Peverell's. More on the writer.
    I see you have a summary of the Peverell's starting the story. Do people still do that? I always thought it died out. Now the trend is to reveal such things gradually in the story. To each his own.

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