HE WHO RIDES A TIGER

"HE WHO RIDES A TIGER" Chief petty office Peter Thompson the upstanding, charming gent hides a secret, he is an abuser of children. How long can he evade the law. one young girl, his daughter finds the courage to come forward to tell all after years of torment.. based on a true story. "A must read"

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He blinked once.’

She went into the living room drawer and found a large note pad and a pen and then brought it to him. Holding it open she placed the biro into his good hand and he wrote.

“Thank feck you are here Rose, they would have left me to die.’

 Rose had to laugh, at least her father had kept his sense of humour.

“We are going to get you well again so don’t worry. If you need anything just grunt and I’ll come in. write down what you need and we can get it.’

“Ray wrote- can you bring the feckin telly in I’m bored shitless here.’

Yes, Da’ I’ll get Shaun to bring that in now for you.’

Shaun! Rose shouted, bring the television in here Da’ wants to watch it.’

“How would you know what he wants?

“Rose showed him the notepad.

Ray had written- Feckin idjit.’ 

Over the next two weeks Rose cleaned the home from top to toe with the help of her sister Maggie. Rose rang the hospital and organized two male carers to come in and bathe her father and see to his toilet needs. A physiotherapist came in to help him try and regain the use of his left arm and leg. It was a slow process but eventually Ray was able to stand using a Zimmer frame. He slid his left leg along the floor to begin with then as the sensation returned to both limbs he learned to use his left hand again. Each week he was sent to a speech therapist where he learned how to talk again. It took Ray months just to walk a few steps but slowly Rose’s father began to recover. She spoke to Janet each weekend to tell her of her fathers’ progress.

Janet told her that Peter was now working on board the Lord Hinton, a converted coal carrier that was used to transport coal from Newcastle to Kingsworth Power Station in Kent via the River Medway. It had been used during WW2. Now it transported goods all over the world.

“What does it deliver now asked Rose?

“Cars mostly, Janet told Rose.’

“Does Peter like his Job?

“He didn’t at first but I think he’s getting used to it now.’

Little did they both realise that their conversations were being monitored by the MOD. It was just a safety precaution.

Rose wasn’t even aware that she was being followed whenever she left the house. She had a walk to the town where most of the shop windows had been blown out.

She went to W. McDowell’s grocery store to get the shopping in for her father. There wasn’t a lot to live on; Just his war pension and some sick money. It was highly unlikely that Ray Sullivan would be able to live a normal life again, he would always need someone to look after him. She walked into the co-op and pushed a trolley around aimlessly. She would rather be out shopping than stuck in the house with her father. Once she’d got what she needed she proceeded to the checkout. She totted everything up before she got to the till so that the assistant didn’t rob her as she pushed the items through. The Shopping bills were increasing these days Rose thought.

She walked to O’Connell’s coffee shop and went inside. She bought herself a cream cake and a cup of espresso coffee then sat down near the window. She never noticed the man as he walked in. She was oblivious to everything around her and thinking of Janet, Peter and Elizabeth. Then she took out her pocket -sized book of poems and began to read.

Then suddenly she heard a familiar voice, a voice softly spoken as he stood at her table.

Hello Rose, still reading poetry I see.’

“Rose looked up to see Sir Patrick Connor. Her face reddened and she folded the book and put it back into her handbag.

“Do you mind if I join you Rose?

“If you wish, I never thought that you would come into an establishment such as this one.’

“Why ever not?

“They don’t serve high tea here.’

“You must think me very snobbish then?

“Yes,’ it’s the people that frequent this place, we’re just not good enough for your kind are we?

“I have been such a fool Rose, I’m sorry will you ever forgive me?

There’s nothing to forgive Sir Patrick, I was just a young foolish maid thinking that a man of your stature in life would care for a slip of a girl like me. I’m older now and of course a lot wiser.’

“Rose, my dear Rose, Patrick took her by the hand. I told my father and mother that I was hopelessly in love with you and they told me to stop being so ridiculous. That was when they brought Emmaline Willoughby to the house. My father pushed me into marrying her Rose he wanted a grandchild. It was obvious once we were married that I wasn’t in love with her. I was fond of her don’t get me wrong, but I couldn’t get you out of my mind.’

Why didn’t you come for me after my mother died?’

“It was the wrong time Rose, you were grieving for your mother.’

“My father is recovering from a stroke.’

“Yes, I know that; if there is anything I can do you only have to ask.’

“We’re fine, my father is recovering.’

“And you Rose, what about you?

I’ll get by as I always have.’

Are you married, I see your wearing a wedding ring.’

“It was my grandmothers ring, I wear it to stop people bothering me.’

“Do I bother you Rose?

“You have bothered me practically my whole life Sir Patrick, I wasted my youth thinking, hoping, praying, that you would come and take me away from the life that I had to endure. So, when you didn’t come. I left Ireland for England and took a job as a housekeeper and a nanny to a lovely couple who embraced me as part of their family.

“We both have wasted our lives Rose, I too have lived alone in the big house since my wife and unborn child died.  My parents have both passed on. Are you as lonely as I feel?

Yes, I’m lonely Sir Patrick, knowing that I could never be with you.’

“Why ever not, there is nothing stopping us Rose, please say that you will come back to the big house with me. I love you so much. I want you for my wife.’

Rose thought for a moment then shook her head. I could never marry you Sir Patrick because I could never fit into your world.’

Oh Rose, please forget all that, I would gladly give up everything, my title my house everything if you would only be mine.’

Rose stood up from her seat and made to leave when Sir Patrick caught her hand and drew her to him and kissed her. His lips brushed softly against hers and he held her as if he never wanted her   let go. Margaret O’Connell the café owner stood with her mouth agape as they kissed. She nudged her husband Willie who smiled.

Sir Patrick led Rose through the front entrance and into his chauffer driven Bentley that was parked outside.

 “Huntley take us home would you.’

Yes, certainly Sir Patrick.’ The chauffer opened the door and they both slid into the back.

Sir Patrick held Roses hand all the way to Glenburn manor and when Huntley let them out Sir Patrick took Rose upstairs to his bedroom where they made love. For the first time in her life Rose felt totally alive and she gave herself completely to the only man that she’d ever loved.

They lay in each other’s arms for what seemed an eternity. Then Rose told Patrick that she would have to go.’

“You will come back won’t you Rose?

 

“One-day Patrick, but not yet.’

Rose dressed, in the bedroom and then made to go out. Huntley opened the car door and told her that Sir Patrick had ordered him to drive her home.’

She smiled as she looked up at the window to see Patrick standing there looking down. He was still handsome and that was the way she would always remember him.

 

 

The office of the Big City Trading Company was buzzing Michelle Adams the solicitor turned stockbroker was doing well and she and Brian were making a lot of money together. Going home that evening Brian felt good.

He went to his car and drove home he’d only just opened the door to his house when two men in suits approached. “Mr. Thompson, Brian Thompson.’

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