Emeralda looked out through the bay window to the road outside. A rather well kept street on the whole, she thought, looking across the road to the houses opposite. Number one had the tree in the garden, and, on the branch that reached out across the road, she could see Tuppence, one of number three’s cats clambering along.
Number three was the garden with the flower beds. Four of them, one in each corner, and a shaped whatzits in the middle. A spiral bush thing that tapered upwards. Fivepence, their other cat was curled up beneath this out of place contraption.
Number five was where the doctor lived. Doctor Felix was a well-liked man, but he wasn’t keen on cats, and was always shooing number three’s away whenever they were on his rather overgrown lawn. He had the brainwave to buy himself a pet dog, which he thought would be the better option to keep the cats at bay, but was dismayed when Bruce, his dog, suddenly became friends with both Tuppence and Fivepence, and they played for hours with each other on the lawn. He left them to it after that.
Number seven is where the family live. Mother, Father, Son, Son, and Daughter. Mother is Maude Grumbells. Father is Clyde Grumbells. And the children are Xavier, the oldest, and the twins Archie and Tulip. Sinister looking, always dressed in black, and never really seen in the daytime. Nice family though.
Number nine is where Adam Mirage lives. Adam is, so he says, a rock star in the making. He changed his name from Montgomery to Mirage last year. He describes his vocal range as unique, and that is one way to describe it.
Number eleven is where Amy Brock lives. A retired headmistress, she keeps herself to herself until something is going on, and then she is always in the middle of everything. She gets on well with Audrey Fothergill, her from number one with the tree.
Emeralda brought her attention to this side of the road now. Working back down the road, number twelve is where the shop is. A little corner shop that sells everything. Open morning until night, Mr Beckwith never stops working. Which is strange for this street.
Number ten is home to Connor and Rezni, a young student couple who have been moving in for the last two years. They are never really there, but there is always a cart outside with something being dropped off.
Number eight is where the boatman lives. And Sydney Feelgood lives up to his name. He makes more than just the curtains twitch as he goes to work. Everything is more revealing when he is around.
Number six is currently empty, but there are a lot of visitors from the mainland arriving daily for measuring and photograph taking duties. And, presumably, to keep Sydney in work.
Number four is home to Agnes Ontario. An elderly lady, a spinster, who is the life and soul of the party. Nothing is too much work for Agnes to help anyone, and everyone stops what they are doing to help Agnes.
And finally, next door is number two. The students. Four people sharing a house. Three girls and a boy. The three girls are known collectively as the Triettes. The boy is the son of the couple who live at number three with the flowerbeds, Muriel and Fletcher Ace.
Emeralda’s attention was brought back into the room as Agnes walked in.
“Hello, Kid!” Said Agnes with a broad smile. She called everyone Kid. “I thought I’d see you here!”
“Hello Lady Ontario!” Emeralda always called Agnes a Lady, for she was. Emeralda too was a lady once, many years ago.
“That’s a nice green you’re wearing, Kid,” Agnes settled down onto her sofa. “I had a dress like that once. Not as green, though. It was more of a blue. And not as long. Mine went to me knees, not to the floor as yours does. Mine wasn’t as gathered in the waist, or as frilly on the chest, or as broad on the shoulders. And I never wore a hat with feathers as big as that. And, tell you what, Kid, I wished I carried a parasol just like that one. You young ones know how to dress nowadays!” Agnes smiled as she reminisced how she dressed when she was younger.
“I’m older than you now,” Emeralda said, “A hunderd or so years older.”
“A hunderd… Oh, that’s right, Kid, you’re a ghost an’ all aren’t you? You look so real you see!”
Emeralda smiled. She was happy that she had come across this delightfully psychic lady, and loved to visit frequently.
“Oh, drat.” Agnes frowned as she knocked her stick to the floor. She leant forward on the sofa, tapping the floor trying to locate where it had gone. “I do wish you could touch things, Kid, rather than goin’ straight through them… you could pass me my stick. Ah, got it.”
A knock came at the door. Agnes stood up, and tapped her way through the doorway into the hallway. Emeralda could hear her tapping her way to the front door.
“Just a minute, Kid,” Agnes shouted, “I’m just trying to find me key.”
Emeralda heard Audrey’s voice at the door, and decided to fade away as Agnes invited Audrey in for a cup of tea. She’d be back later.