"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


6. 6

He had been out with a few girls when he had the pub but they weren’t really interested in him only his money; not that he had much now because he bought the house on Armstrong Road when there was a slump in the market and everyone found themselves either repossessed or having to sell cheaply. Don got his house for £18.000 which left him a few thousand in the bank which paid his rates and bills from the interest it incurred. The two bed roomed house was pretty cosy he thought, Out the front was a small garden with a privet hedge. Don spent time cultivating it with bedding plants in the spring and kept the hedge tidy by trimming it with hedging shears that were his fathers. All his tools were kept well oiled and cleaned in his shed that his friend Eddie Turnbull that had helped him make. It was more like cabin than a shed as it was like home from home. It stretched along the side wall and was about ten feet wide and twenty two feet long. There was more than enough room for his table and chairs too. Don had and old leather sofa from his mother’s house and a leather chair that he sat on in the summer months there were a few old photo’s from the ship yards that Don had collected and had framed. It reminded him of a time when he and his father George had worked together. His shed was even warm in the winter because he had installed a Callor gas heater inside. It was warm as toast in there. Eddie had even installed a light from the supply in his house so if he was working in there of an evening which he did a lot in the summer months because Dons hobby was restoring old things; he was good a fixing things and adapting and restoring old furniture. He recovered many an old suite or restored and polished wooden tables and chairs for a few bob from charity shops then sold on to people from the bingo.

He adapted an old bicycle so he could carry his shopping on the back of it. He came through the tunnel every Saturday to tend to his parents grave at the local cemetery. It only took him ten minutes to get through the tunnel then up in the lift. On the way back from the cemetery he always stopped off at the Jarrow Slacks to look out. Even though he no longer worked in the docks, the River Tyne always drew him back like some giant magnet. The attraction was unreal.

“Come on Fart let’s get you home he called to his dog who he had on a lead. Straddling the old green coloured Raleigh bicycle he placed his foot on the pedal then was about to set off when he heard a voice.

Don looked around to see where the sound was coming from and he couldn’t see anyone.

The boxer puppy was alerted to the sound too.

“Mister I’m over here in the shrubbery.’

Don got off his bicycle and stood it up against the iron railing then walked with the dog towards the shrubbery.

“Where are you?’ are you hurt?’

“No, I’ve wet myself; I need some knickers.’

“Where do you live I will go and fetch you some.’

“I have no home, I live here.’

“You must have some family.’

“No I haven’t I ran away from the home where they sent me.’

Don looked up at the shrubbery but hidden amongst the shrubs was a piece of tarpaulin and an old cardboard box.

“Can you come out?’

“I don’t want to; it was raining last night and the ground was all muddy and it soaked my blanket and me as well.’

“Look just come out and I will get you some dry clothes.’


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