Inspector Graham’s mystery

Here’s a sneak preview of the mystery Thomas Radwinter is commissioned to ‘investigate’…

Inspector Graham’s mystery

If I had to tell you what Inspector Graham looked like I’d struggle… he’s got brownish greyish hair, a normal sort of handsome-ish  face, brownish sort of eyes, not particularly tall but not particularly short. Inspector Graham isn’t fat or thin, just sort of, well, normal… he wears smart grey suits… well, every time I’ve seen him he does, and he has a pleasant but ordinary voice with no particular accent, or funny way of speaking… he’s just ordinary… and I guess for a policeman that’s an advantage… I guess you don’t always want to announce your profession…

I don’t get any sense of his character either, but I have the feeling he knows a bit about me… we first met when I was a witness to a man attacking someone,  and since then I seem to have got myself in various pickles which ended up with me making statements and being interviewed by the police…

But the task he has set me – commissioned me, this task, I think, is something outside his police work… so is it something personal?

Inspector Graham’s file was all about a girl known as Shelly… including documents from the police, which I’m sure he wasn’t meant to have… what a great deal of trust he was placing in me…

So when he was telling me about Shelly Beach, she was a person not place where the kids and I play by the sea… For a moment I thought how unfair her parents, Mr. and Mrs Beach had been to call her that, but as I began to unpick the files, all became clear.

There were newspaper cuttings, seemingly every item in the local press, the Strand Argos and the Castair Courier, plus there were loads of printouts from the national newspapers too…

You see, a local woman who had been out early walking her dog, had come across this young woman lying washed up on the beach at Strand. She was unconscious, but when an ambulance came and she was whisked off to hospital, thankfully she was found to be unhurt, although suffering slightly from the cold.

There was a Sunday paper magazine article about her, which was told in a rather dramatic way, and it mentioned similar people who had been found with lost memories… Yes, you see, this girl had completely lost her memory. She didn’t know who she was, where she had come from, or even her name… hence Shelly.

© Lois Elsden 2017

This is an excerpt from my next Radwinter novel which I hope will be published next spring. The idea of a ‘found’ rather than ‘missing’ person has been with me for a long time. In our newspaper there used to be a copy of an old article reprinted from a hundred years ago. One of these was about a young woman who was found washed up on a beach suffering from amnesia. I have played around with this idea and now I’m writing about Shelly Beach.

Here’s a link to my other Radwinter stories, and my other e-books and paperbacks:

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