I went into a wool shop… (i)

Like many writers, I quite often end up with scenes from novels which never actually get included. Sometimes the scenes are just ideas inside my head, sometimes they get written down and filed away; they might get used, they might get changed and used in a completely different story, or they might just sit there.

In my second Radwinter story, Magick, there is an episode where Thomas Radwinter is searching for a missing woman and goes to a small village out in the country. There is a wool shop and he goes in and there is a scene between him and the wool shop man… and that is it. However, in my head something else happened, which I have never written about until today… and here is part one. In the story his little son is only three – in my current novel he’s much older!

I went into a wool shop…

It actually wasn’t funny… it wasn’t funny at all… I was just grateful that Kenneil was out for the day with Daph and Sheila, but on the other hand out for the day meant they wouldn’t be back until three o’clock at the earliest…
If only I hadn’t dropped my damned phone, or had picked it up at the time… It had rung a couple of times, and obviously I could hear it but couldn’t answer it… as it was at the bottom of the Chinese flower vase filled with twigs and sprays which Kenneil and I had painted with silver paint and Kylie’s red nail polish for a Christmas effect.
I’d been coming down stairs with an armful of laundry, caught a pillowslip on the lock of the stair gate and almost catapulted myself and the washing down the narrow stairs… fortunately the washing and my phone had gone but I’d managed with a superhuman and virtuoso gymnastic display, unfortunately unwitnessed by any admiring wife or son, not to tumble after it. I landed on my ample – but less ample than formerly – rear, in what was actually a graceful, slo-mo descent onto the stairs.
Laughing at myself I’d bounded down, gathered the washing then heard my phone ring. I couldn’t locate it for a moment then realised it had gone into the pot… it was safe, I would get it when the laundry was in the machine… but of course I didn’t… I got side-tacked by my brilliant idea.
Kylie and I had gone to an auction… ever keen to save money, we had gone to see what an auction was like, just in case we might want to buy something in the future… and I had inadvertently bought something… the Chinese pot and luckily it was only £2… I was apologetic, Kylie was amused, and it was a nice pot, a big one about three foot tall. It was cracked so could never be used for flowers, but with the crack turned to the wall and a seasonal display, it actually looked very nice, and Kylie was pleased with me… Someone being pleased with me thrills me no end, I can tell you! How my life has changed!
I stopped my futile struggling and tried to lie down to work out what to do. I was a prisoner… I was trapped until someone came to my rescue, and it was my own stupid fault. Luckily rescue would be this afternoon when Daph and Sheila brought Kenneil home… except they would knock on the door, I wouldn’t answer, even with my most ferocious bellow they wouldn’t hear me crying for help, so they would think I had gone to the shops or to see Kylie or something and take our boy home… and Kylie wouldn’t be home until about five… unless she worked late in which case…
I would be very hungry, thirsty and in pain by then… thank goodness I didn’t need the loo… except now I thought about it… don’t think… don’t think about toilets… put them out of your mind, Thomas!
So here I was lying on the floor of the back room where we spend most of our time to be economical and not heat the rest of the house, and I was lying in a painfully awkward position with a rather heavy wooden chair on top of me. We’d inherited the chair from a neighbour, and I actually think it’s too big and too heavy to be practical… I certainly did now as I lay beneath it, pinned by the annoying piece of furniture, which was actually quite painful.  My hands were bound and the more I tugged, the tighter the ties became… the tighter and more agonising.
So how had I come to be in this ludicrous position? It had all started with such good intention, and so promisingly – in fact I was quite excited and quite smug as I set to. It all began to go wrong quite quickly and I stopped and started again… in fact I started again several times, becoming less enthusiastic, more cross with myself for being useless (I’ve been conditioned to feel useless and this simple thing was proving it) and really irritated. Things had gone awry yet again and this was where the disaster was primed to happen. I enlisted the aid of the chair… yes, the chair was to blame, and it soon became apparent that things were going wrong one more blasted time and I had a bit of a rage resulting in the chair having a mind of its own deliberately engaged with me, and before I knew it, I was on the floor and the chair was atop me.
I suddenly had a vision of myself, lying on the floor, a great chubster – yes, even though I’ve lost weight I’m still a big lad, pinned in a very awkward position by the chair… and it suddenly struck me as really funny and I lay there, on my own in the back room, in a painful and awkward position laughing my head off – not literally of course.
I stopped laughing… It actually wasn’t funny… it wasn’t funny at all… I was just grateful that Kenneil was out for the day with Daph and Sheila, but on the other hand out for the day they wouldn’t be back until three o’clock at the earliest…
So what had happened? Well, believe it or not, it had started several days ago when I’d been trying to track down a missing woman and for some reason I had gone into a small knitting and wool shop in the village of Little Oak. Actually the some reason was that pondering on what to get Kylie for Christmas which would be lovely and appreciated but would not cost a lot, I’d seen a video about knitting… yes I do watch some random stuff when I’m supposed to be working. In the video a rather attractive woman with dark hair had knitted a beautiful scarf without using knitting needles, just using her hands. It looked so simple! You needed very thick fluffy wool, you wound one end round your wrist and then made some loops and then put your other hand through and took a loop, and some wool, and somehow, magically and very easily you made a wonderful wide scarf – then it was simplicity to sew the ends together and make what apparently is called a snood.
Kylie would love it! She would look so beautiful! It would not cost a lot, but it would be made with lots and lots of love! Simples, as a meerkats once said! So in the wool shop, a very handsome and suave man helped me choose some wool of just the right sort – and enough of it, and today was the day I would make the snood! Kenneil was having a lovely time out with our friends; I had the place to myself… simples!

The title by the way comes from the silly rhyme – I went into a felt shop to feel a piece of felt; of all the felt I’ve ever felt, I’ve never felt a piece of felt that felt as that felt felt.

If you want to read Magick, and see if Thomas found the missing woman, here is a link:


and a link to my other Radwinter novels:


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