Here is some more from my work in progress, House of Shadows (working title). Don't worry, it won't spoil the book for you when it's released. These are behind the scenes character profiles, including colorful adventures from Elle's eccentric family! I'm writing this but its Elle Feedwell's own story!
The book is set in 1950's London and New York. The gist is about a young girl, called Elle who goes to live with her gran after her mother dies. Gran is quite an eccentric oldster! She's a former silent screen star who has a very unusual house on Gramercy Park in New York.
Now, as Gramercy Park is a lovely place, I want to say that this is a work of fiction and in no way representative of the place or the people who reside or have ever resided in that place! This is strictly from my head! Uh oh!
"More about Gran! Theodora Olympia Huddlefield's parents were staunch Abolitionists who joined whatever groups they could find that saved people. They were proud members of the Salvation Army, going to England in order to join it! They did attend a meeting in Philadelphia in 1879 and became some of the very first members in America, however.
Gran's photo collection featured them and their friends and mentors and was her most prized possession.
Despite her excellent qualities, she was strange and could be intimidating, although, she was kind-hearted..."
Elle finds Gran's house filled with her 'saves'. Gran saves people and Elle soon grows to love her.
Here is a bit about her Aunt Dotty.
Aunt Dotty had a most unusual way of preparing breakfast porridge. She was always quite pink in the face after 'breathing in the oats' as she called it. After a while, as I understand it, Gran insisted she breathe them in BEFORE the mixture was hot!
Aunt Dotty thought that was absolutely super and began doing it at once!
One moment, before I go on! Here is a translation of the mainly British word: dotty, If you say that someone is dotty, you mean that they are slightly mad or likely to do strange things. This so defined My Aunt Dotty. She was completely crackers and had been ever since she stood in line to get an autograph from her favorite actor, Sir Giles Can'tactbutlovesshakespare!
Yes, he was really something in more ways than one as they say. And at the turn of the century, when Aunt Dotty was young. Long before the internet upset people, whatever their politics or religion, Auntie had the joy of hero worshipping a no talent actor just because he spoke beautifully.
Oh! I say! I do love the sound of his voice! He gives me chills when he speaks!"
And speak he did. I did accompany her once to see him. No, he was no longer performing on Broadway or even off Broadway. In other words he was, instead, 'the main draw' in bar rooms in and around the Bowery.
This is him playing Henry the V111's beloved jester Will Sommers.
I realize now looking back, that she wished to have a romantic interlude with him. poor Dotty. This was not to happen until she was in her dotage. Gran eventually installed her in Finster's Care Home which was a nice place if you didn't mind the staff. Gran only found out about that later. The staff was nice enough, but they were elderly themselves. And though they worked as hard as they possibly could, things were never right. Dotty ran away. Gran invited her and and anyone else who wished to leave, to stay at her home on Gramercy Park. The purchase of another property was in the offing, that is she purchased number 11 when the Frumpton sisters passed away. People said they were two oddball spinsters, Gran agreed and said they were more than that. But she wouldn't elaborate. I was to find out what she meant a little later.
The residence then became 11-13 Gramercy Park South.
Yes, it was the liberation of oldsters from a none to perfect home. My generous grandmother enjoyed liberating people. She always said life was sometimes very unfair and one should do all that one could to help someone caught up in a mess not of their choosing. She was fortunate to have the dosh to do it. That was why Grandfather, Cyrus' portrait hung over the fireplace in the drawing room. Cyrus, who had given up big game hunting when he thought about how horrible it was. A Dutch friend of his, Abe Van Helsing--had some very strong opinions about the popular, but barbaric practice. "Leave the poor beasts alone and destroy monsters!" His words verbatam and so instead of causing harm in the world, Cyrus became an enthusiastic Vampire Destroyer!
As for Aunt Dotty's romantic yearnings, they did indeed return to her so late in life she nearly didn't witness it. But she was happy as it was with a retired dresser to Sir Giles Can'tactbutlovesshakespare! The gentleman was very handsome in his own right, Auntie said he'd give Sir Giles a run for his money!
In this post you will see that love was briefly rekindled when Dotty and her long, lost love met up!
More about that in the next post!