Annette thought her Granddad was beingweird. All of a sudden, he was spendingloads of time with her on family history.Trying to get her excited about the strong,proud past of the Vickers dynasty.To get off the hook, she promised to do allshe could to restore their family to theirformer glory. Harry had then startled herwith a genuine hug.
She wasn’t sure what had gotinto him. He’d always beenremote and prickly before.Worried, she decided to tell hermum about the change, seewhat she thought.
Ariette bullied the truth out of her dad, and took it upon herself to care for him onceshed straightened everything out.Annette felt awful. Had she promised a dying man something she didn’t really want todo? Did it count?
Harry was feeling quite pleased with himself. Keeping his secret for so long meant hewas spending a minimum of time on what he was convinced was his deathbed. Hisgranddaughter had promised to sort out the mess he’d made of the family, and he waseven managing a friendly conversation with Ariette.
When the end finally came, he didn’t look away from his daughtersface. He may have had trouble showing it, but he loved her.
His body faded away and left only hisspirit form behind. Ariette watchedin awe. Her father gave her one lastsmile, before his gaze was caught bythings she couldn’t see. She reachedout, but he was gone.
Harry had planned everything. There was a small stonewith a plaque set up in the garden. It was a marker, theVickers had put down roots. Here, in Deasil Street, wouldbe where their fortunes reversed.
Teresa had watched the Vickers mourning at Harry’sgrave. She waited a day then popped over to see howAriette was doing. Ariette was overcome, she had beenso rude to Teresa when she’d first moved in withWarren. She felt another block to making friends in thestreet tumble away.
Annette was staying in with her mum following her grandfathers death and Malika wasbusy with the neighbourhood watch, so Megan was having to amuse herself. Sheescaped the house down at the local park when things got tense. It was frustratinglistening to her parents fight over money when she had plenty of ideas about how tofix their problems. In her own little world, she didn’t notice she was being watched.
The older girl was called Emma Eff. She hadfallen through the cracks of the care systemas a child, and was now looking after herself.She usually hung out in a dimly lit basementto meet her friends and customers.
Who she was, where shelived and what she did tomake money in thatbasement was a worldaway from little MeganBailey. So why was sheinterested in her?