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Moving Day (standard:science fiction, 1169 words)
Author: Brian CrossAdded: Aug 04 2005Views/Reads: 2822/1382Story vote: 0.00 (0 votes)
A short story set in Suffolk UK; what seems to be a straightforward couple of miles move develops unforeseen complications


Julian Chesney heaved a sigh of relief. Writers suffered more than most
from disruption and now after weeks of it, moving day had finally 
arrived. Now as he sped along the beach road in spring sunshine he 
could see the white pebbledash outline of his new home zooming large. 

Shortly he'd seen the pantechnicon of T@B removals parked in his
driveway, together with his wife Jodie's car, who'd traveled ahead to 
supervise things. 

He inched his head closer to the screen and frowned, the pantechnicon
wasn't there. They'd wasted no time in getting the job done, fine as 
long as Jodie had supervised then correctly – but that was another 
thing, her MG was missing also. 

Then again, that was okay, she'd probably popped to the village store
for emergency provisions. Jodie after all, was a go-ahead woman, 
something he liked about her. He parked his car, strode towards the 
house, it looked like a white fortress against the blue sky, albeit in 
need of a little attention but he wasn't worried about that, he'd 
planned on making a few improvements and renovation was easy enough to 

The frosted glass door was locked, of course it would be. Jodie had the
keys which made him sigh – she might have been considerate enough to 
await his arrival. He made a mental note to get a separate bunch cut 
and then proceeded to the back, where the extensive lounge provided a 
panoramic view of the sea. 

Then his breath caught in his throat, his mouth became as dry and rough
as the pebbled beach; he was staring into a large void, nothing but 
bare floorboards and paintings he'd bought off the previous owner. 

He raked his fingers through his hair, suddenly aware of the heat of the
day. He'd had things to tie up at the other end so Jodie and the 
removal men had left a couple of hours earlier. What the hell had 
happened? Three flat miles of open beach road lay between Aldeburgh and 
their new Thorpeness home, if there had been problems he could hardly 
have missed them. 

But no trace. 

He grabbed his mobile phone from his pocket, fumbled and almost dropped
it before his shaky fingers tapped out Jodie's number. 

Her phone was switched off. 

He cursed, swung round. To the few ramblers along the beach he must seem
like a whirling dervish – he called the removal company – ‘Ah, Mr. 
Chesney...' a voice crackled before the line went dead. He felt like 
screaming to high heaven – why couldn't they erect decent phone lines 
in this part of the world? He tried again to no avail. 

The phone in the house – had it been connected? He couldn't remember.
But he didn't need to break the glass to find out; he'd known a 
locksmith in days gone by, learned a few tricks he'd later applied to 
his novels. He ran to the side door and picked the lock in seconds. 

He got that sinking feeling the moment he picked up the lounge phone –
it was disconnected, but there was a separate line in the gallery 
upstairs – the room that was supposed to provide inspiration for his 
writing – 

Again, it hadn't been connected. 

Anxiety turned to despair, turned to anger. A downward spiral of
emotions ending in deceit. Deceit was the name of this game, what else 
could it be? He'd no reason to believe she might deceive him, she was 
dynamic, involved in everything but – 

His mind was becoming a waterlogged field of irrational thoughts,
sucking him down, denying him any sense of direction. He ran down the 
stairs two at a time – she'd left him as high and dry as the ridge 
their new home was built on. 

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