"Nobody's Child" Cassie is an eleven year old girl who has been in a children's home since she was four years old. Very bright, Cassie excels in most subjects and can play Brahms and Mozart on the piano at the age of only six. Because of her age nobody wants to adopt her. Mrs Cummings the manager of Auton House is a wicked woman who treats Cassie and the rest in her charge badly and beats her with regularity. One day she is sent to clean out the toilet and bathroom and Mrs Cummings comes along to inspect them. Running a white glove over everything and looking for dirt. When she doesn't find any she then reaches up on the door - Cassie is only three feet six inches tall and was unable to reach up to the top of the door and Mrs Cummings sets about her with a cane. She beats her so badly that Cassie runs at her forcing her back where she hits her head on a wash basin. Cassie in her panic rushes out and runs away.- It is there that she meets Don a ex docker who takes pity on the girl - rea


55. 55

Inside an old man made different hot drinks in glass cups. He did hot sarsaparilla, hot blackcurrant, and hot Oxo. The shop also served tea and coffee but It was the hot sarsaparilla that she ordered. Walking into the back of the shop there was a roaring fire and a big leather chair. She sat down on it whilst the old man brought her drink.

He placed it on the table then walked away.

“Thank you she shouted.’

“You’re welcome my darling.’ Enjoy.’

She took a sip from the glass and it was still too hot to drink so she let it cool down.

Going into her pocket she still had one pound ten shillings and sixpence.

She would go back to the fish shop again tonight and buy cod and chips. That would fill her up and it would one cost one shilling and nine pence. She was hungry now having only eaten a bacon sandwich all day that she had been kindly given by Geordie Shotton and his wife Daisy. Cassie tried to put all thoughts of food from her mind but her tummy started to make growling noises. She took a large slurp from the glass after a while had passed. Two old women sat down and waited for a pot of tea to be brought over. They sounded like a couple of chickens squawking as they chatted away. “You know I liked that blouse from Bon Marché Glady’s but I thought it looked a bit tight on you.’

“I don’t know how, I’ve been on a strict diet for the last few months.’ This Christmas I had no Christmas pudding and not one chocolate touched my lips Ina.’

“Well I just made a right pig of myself as usual.’ “You know I weighed myself at Boots the Chemists the other day and I haven’t gained an ounce.’

“I don’t know how you do it Ina.’ I just have to look at a cake and I’ve gained two pounds.’

The old man brought the tea over and then asked if they would like anything else.’

“I will have a large slice of that chocolate cake in the window said Ina.’

“And you madam would you like anything.’

“Oh to hell with the diet give me a large slice of that cake as well.’

Both women laughed then Glady’s poured the tea.’

Cassie had to giggle as she listened to the two women. She found it strange how women became obsessed about their bodies and the way that they looked especially in old age.

“When the old man brought the cakes over he leaned across and whispered I think you two ladies are very beautiful as you are.’

The women both blushed then looked at one another and smiled.

“You’ve still got it Ina.’

“You too Glady’s said the other.’

Cassie finished her drink then made her way to the fish and chip shop looking at that chocolate cake which was actually more than a fish and chip supper had made her stomach growl even more.

Cassie was surprised when she walked into the Chippy that Tom Hadaway recognised her as he dipped several pieces of cod in batter mix and placed them into the fryer.

“Hello youngun’ what can I do for yer tonight?’

“Can I have cod and chips please?’

“Of course you can love, would you like salt and vinegar and batter on them as well.’

“Yes please.’

“Yer not from around here are you?’

“We just moved from over in Jarrow last week.’ we are living on Clive Street; you know near the docks.’

“Aye I know the place.’

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