Friday, 18 March 2016

Guest Author Stevie Turner of East Anglia, UK

The Scribbler has an international scope, readers and writers from all over the world. Todays guest is Stevie Turner of East Anglia, United Kingdom. An accomplished author with 8 novels and 4 short stories published which focus on the darker side of relationships, but also have her trademark sprinkling of humour.

She is enjoying an early retirement and is now a full time writer. She is married with "an ever-expanding" immediate family. She gains inspiration while walking along the country footpaths and byways around her village.

This week we are fortunate to have one of her short stories that will be published in a collection later in 2016. Her link is listed below.



A MARRIAGE MADE IN HEAVEN, by STEVIE TURNER

COPYRIGHT STEVIE TURNER 2016

 

          “I hear you’re looking for a quick way to pay off your debts.”

          I look up as a stocky young guy with clean, dark, waist-length hair puts his lunch tray down opposite me and takes a seat.  I don’t know him but have seen him around the campus, usually carrying a guitar in a case on his back.

          “I might be; as long as it’s legal and I get to keep my clothes on.”

          I nibble on my sandwich as nonchalantly as I can, enjoying his throaty chuckle at my remark.

          “Well, it’ll definitely be legal, but it’s up to you about the clothes.”

          Intrigued, I study his face for more clues.  There are two laughing blue eyes trying to hide behind copious amounts of dark facial fuzz, which I swiftly decide he’d look better without.

          “Out with it then; I’ve a lecture starting in twenty minutes.”

          “Sure.”  He nods. “It’s like this; I’m here on a student visa which runs out in October, but it’ll be better for my musical career if I can stay in the UK.”  He takes a bite of his burger and scans my face intently. “So……. you agree to marry me, and I put fifteen thousand smackeroos in your bank account.”

          “Bloody hell!”  I nearly choke on my food. “You move right along, don’t you?” 

          “Don’t give me an answer now; think about it.”  He waggles his finger at me. “I’m not saying all this just to get into your pants; I really need to stay here.  Things are happening for me and my band.”

          “Jeez.”  I look at him aghast. “Married?  I don’t even know your name!”

          “Ha; it’s Gerrie Hermann.  So you’re interested then? What’s your name, by the way?”

          His accent is appealing, but I can’t quite place it.  I have a terrible mental image of taking him up North to meet Mum and Dad, the straightest, poorest, but proudest parents in all the land.

          “Sophie Woods, but I can’t see it working.” I shake my head.

          “Sure it will.  You don’t have to love me or anything, ‘cos I’m basically an arsehole.”  His eyes twinkle. “We get married; I go my way, and you go yours.  Only now you’re fifteen thousand pounds richer.”

          I try not to laugh as I finish up my cola and look at his frayed denim waistcoat and dirty-white tee shirt.

         
“And where are you, arsehole extraordinaire, going to get fifteen thousand quid from?” 

          “I’ve already got it from my parents and from playing gigs.  Come with me to the hole in the wall and I’ll print you out a balance.”

          “I’ve got a lecture.  I’ll think about it.” 

                              ***

          Gerrie finds me again the next day in the cafeteria.  I notice with distaste the same off –white tee shirt, but this time without the waistcoat.

          “See you at the cash machine at half past four.”  He winks as he walks past me. “Don’t be late.”

          The effrontery of the guy is amazing.  However, intrigued, I find myself walking a circuitous route to the accommodation unit after lectures end, just to see if he’s there.  He is; waiting there like Winnie the Pooh on steroids, with a smile on his face the size of the Blackwall tunnel.

          “I knew you’d come!”  He’s almost jumping up and down with glee. “You’re not seeing my pin number, but you can have the print-out.”

          I look away as he pops his card in the reader and enters the pin.  I still cannot believe somebody looking the way he does could possess thousands of pounds in his bank account.  He requests a balance and gives me another grin.

          “Mum and Dad are minted. Why do you think I’ve been able to get a student visa?”

          I take the balance print-out from him, and am surprised to discover there is over thirty thousand pounds in his account.

          “Because you murdered them and stole all their money?”  I look again at the piece of paper just to make sure.

          “Wrong. I told you; they’re wealthy.  What do you say?  Come down to the bank with me tomorrow lunchtime, and I’ll transfer it over to your account.”

          It was all moving too fast.  I saw a summer of not having to work at menial jobs in order to pay Mum and Dad back, who had re-mortgaged their home in order to be able to send me to university.  I could repay my debt to them in dribs and drabs so as not to cause suspicion, and be done with it. They’d never find out I was already married, and I could always say to a future partner that I didn’t need a marriage certificate to prove my commitment.  I decided for once in my life to live dangerously.

          “Okay, but wait until exams are over.  I’ll book it for some time in July, but you’ll have to shave though. I hate beards.”

          Gerrie shakes his head.

          “No way; love me, love my beard.”

          “I don’t love you, and I’m not marrying a guy whose face is full of fuzz.”

          “Bugger.”  Laughs Gerrie. “You drive a hard bargain, don’t you?”

          “Take it or leave it.”  I reply.
         

                                                             ***
         

          It’s a lovely day for a wedding, as fifteen thousand pounds richer, I stand on the steps of Newham Registry Office with my husband of just ten minutes.  We thank our two witnesses, and ask them to take some photos of us with our iPhones.  The witnesses comply, and then disappear into the throng of passers-by from whence they came, Gerrie looks at me and gives a whoop of joy.

          “Yes!  Thanks for this Sophie; you don’t know what it means to me.”

          “Thanks for the money.”  I laugh.  “Let’s go and celebrate!”

          As we walk along to a nearby pub, I take a swift glance at the newly-shaven Gerrie, who actually looks devastatingly handsome in a three-piece suit and cravat.  He catches my eye and puts a casual arm around my shoulder.

          “So you like the new me, eh?”

          “Sure.” I blush furiously. “You’ve scrubbed up pretty well.”

          “You’re not so bad yourself.”  His gaze travels up and down my body in an instant. “Fancy coming along to my gig tonight?  We can go for a curry afterwards if you like?”

          I’m suddenly happy that we’re not going our separate ways straight off.   I quickly agree, and with a mounting excitement look forward to what might happen after the curry.  After all, it is our wedding night!

         

 
 
Thank you Stevie for this entertaining story. 
 
 
Please drop by Stevie's site and check out her books and more.
 







Next week on the Scribbler you will meet author Ann Knight of Moncton, New Brunswick.




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