room though. Maybe it was his imagination playing tricks on him. He closed his eyes and dropped off to sleep.
It was gone seven thirty when Gordon woke calling out Doreen’s name in his sleep. He sat up with a start and for an instant Doreen was there with him as real as she could be then reality hit him and she was gone and the room cold and empty.
He looked in the wardrobe for his dressing gown and saw all of Doreen’s clothes
He carefully emptied her side and laid them on the bed. He went down stairs then brought up several black bin liners and began to fold away the clothes he found several letters that she’d written and even twenty five pounds in one coat that she had worn with a theatre ticket stub dated 1962 to see a production of Othello.’
He neatly folded each item then placed them into the bag and when they were full he tied them with a knot. There were eleven bags all told. Then he went into her draws and pulled out her underwear and other items of nightwear and underneath some blouses he came across several letters and a photograph of Doreen and a handsome young man who looked Italian.’ He had his arms around her and she was looking into his eyes.
Gordon assumed that he was one of the men who had gone on a cooking course with her when she went to Tuscany and that this was just a friendly photograph until He opened the pile of some fifty or so letters tied with a read ribbon. He read the first one
And his eyes began to widen as he discovered that the man in the photo was called Paulo Conti; he’d heard the name before but he just couldn’t put his finger on it.’
He read on and the letters became more and more intimate. The letters were all dated so he knew that his wife was married to him whilst this was going on.’
“How could she he cried as he threw the letters across the room and cursed the man who had slept with his wife. Curious to know he gathered up the letters and opened the last one that was dated in June 1963 he read that Paulo was coming to England to open a restaurant of his own; he asked to meet her. Gordon’s mind was working overtime when she told him that she had a meeting to go to. At first it was just once a week then it became more frequent.
For some three years his wife had been sleeping with this Italian; he knew that their sex life had been somewhat sporadic due to his work commitments but he never would have known if he hadn’t found the letters.
Maybe she blamed him for not getting her pregnant and that was why she had the affair.’ “God how stupid could I be he said aloud.’
He picked up the bags and brought them all down stairs then placed them in the garage. He rang the church and asked if someone would like to collect the clothing.
Mrs Sheila Hamil who was part of an ecumenical folk group said that she would come along and take them for the church jumble sale if he didn’t mind.’
They agreed that she would come tomorrow night at six thirty.
Gordon put down the phone then drank several glasses of wine before retiring to his study to mark the essays from his students. He couldn’t bring himself to call Dawn; not yet anyway he needed time to think.’
“Whilst she was being looked after by Jim Gales she would come to no harm he thought.’
He picked up a bottle of single malt whiskey and poured himself a large glass and took a huge swallow.’
Around and around went the picture of this Italian and his wife until he broke down in tears. The water from his eyes ran over the essays as he tried to control himself but he