Elizabeth [Ghost-Story, A]

Elizabeth, twin-brother Noah & best-friend Jennifer walk-home barefoot having-attended 1843 Christmas-Eve celebrations at the Henry J Fate Flour-Mill. Twins are tragically-killed in a 'road-traffic-accident'.

Opening-scene; standing on the dirt-road [NO-pavement/sidewalk] a few steps away from the stone-wall entrance of the Henry J Fate Flour-Mill, camera moves-past gate-keepers [night-watchman’s] wooden-hut [on the right-hand-side] across the cobble-stones toward & through the school-room window.

Moving forward to the table nearest-lectern camera focuses-upon Jennifer & her best-friends Elizabeth & Noah listening-intently to their-employer reading closing Christmas Carol paragraphs... ‘God bless-us everyone’.
Closing the book Henry thanked the children for attending the modest flour-mill seasonal-celebrations; standing quietly, the children dutifully lined-up, thanked Henry & wife Zoë as they collected a token-bonus of nuts, flour...

Walking-home barefoot Jennifer fell-behind a few paces, holding the Royal Oak wall for-balance as she brushed the soles of-her-feet to remove stones that had been hidden under the light-dusting of-snow.

Standing upright she caught-sight of a pair-of-horses impact Elizabeth & Noah, their bodies falling-lifeless on-the-road.

Tolling of single church-bell; screen fades-to-black.

We move to 21st-century with Valerie standing by the Royal Oak wall, husband Allan walking-up behind wife of 30yrs.

Elizabeth is hidden-from-view...

Alive-&-mortal Elizabeth & Noah get to live in the 21st-century.

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40. School-Room [wip] replacing that lower

Visiting the restored Henry J Fate Flour-Mill for the first time with nieces Naomi, Hayley & Nikita they came across an elegantly-dressed 20-something female American tourist asking the tour-guide about the framed 1844 graduation-class photograph. Pointing to the 'girl', second from the left, she asked if any details existed in the museum-records.   Valerie quipped ‘Jennifer was outstanding at needle-point’, the tourist turned to Valerie saying ‘I am hopeless; are you related, you are the double of my great-great-great grandmothers teacher’. Valerie replied ‘I am familiar with the period, Jennifers mom Emma was devastated when husband Matthew died just outside the courtyard’. ‘Matthew was strong-as-an-ox & thought nothing of lifting a laden-cart after a spoke split whilst entering, the load shifted & he was tragically impaled’.

American-tourist introduced herself ‘My name too is Jennifer, is there a newspaper article of the accident’. Valerie replied ‘Afraid not, the parish-records are but a single-line’. ‘His boss Henry did pay the widow half-wages for many months & allowed the family to continue living in the Pear-Tree cottage without-charge’. Jennifer intriguingly asked ‘How on earth did you know, that tallies with Jennifers surviving diary’. Moving to the coffee-bar counter in the former classroom Jennifer was keen to discover more. She had paid experts thousands-of-dollars to trace her family-history & there she was talking to a seemingly-knowledgeable stranger met by chance.

Valerie prompted ‘Did you notice the framed-certificate partially-hidden by the filing-cabinet, Matthew was the very-first to pass the Health-&-Safety examination cracking Zoë Fates dressmakers-mannequin demonstrating CPR‘. Jennifer was stunned; approached the receptionist & returned with a copy having-paid a UK£10-donation plus a further UK20-donation for two copies of Elizabeths typed-report of the gruesome murders of Susan-&-Joseph complete with copies of the Manchester Guardian articles & fingerprints taken at-the-time, including those of ancestor Jennifer & others working at the flour-mill, including Elizabeth-&-Noah.  

Handing Valerie one of the sets Jennifer pointed to the flour-mill employee photograph featured in the Manchester Guardian ‘Thats Jennifer, so-cute & such-a-shame she worked in this-place, albeit with an education thrown-in’.

Valerie remembered her charges & the orchard-cottage she-had visited, photograph featured; absence of newspaper-articles & follow-on police-report testified the murder-cases were cold-&-abandoned.  

Valerie was stunned; she had met Susan-&-Joseph & was horrified at learning of their brutal tragic-deaths. Having read ‘Elizabeths’ typed-report Valerie asked ‘Is there a bound cloth-sack in the office filing-cabinet?; please excuse-me I have to-go’.

Walked to reception Valerie asked ‘Please check with-care if there is a folded cloth-sack in any of the filing-cabinet draws, it contains a badly-damaged blood-stained empty money-box & 19 sealed-envelopes’. ‘We were about to throw it in the skip, you may have-it if you-like’. Valerie nervously-accepted, thanked the receptionist with a UK£50-donation & nervously walked-back to-be with Jennifer in the café.  

Having been given the ‘run-around’ on her cell [mobile] phone Valerie arranged a meeting with Carlisle forensics-laboratory; they provisionally-agreed to test saliva, fingerprint & blood-samples.

As a supervised cold-case training-exercise the forensics-laboratory manager demanded a UK£200-contribution for accessing-resources; cash-starved, the facility was keen to obtain private-funding.  

The Carlisle forensics-laboratory manager doubted any forensic-evidence would-remain a century-&-more after the murders; at-the-time ‘nobody’ knew about DNA or how to protect crime-scene evidence.

Valerie knew Elizabeth had taken a strong-interest when living in the 21st-century, absorbed-information like-a-sponge; did Elizabeth retain enough & put-into practice.  

Would anybody listen to an 11yo ‘girl’ child-labourer?

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