by Laura Solomon
and Kerryn Young
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A property in the Cotswolds!
I was a lady now and ought to start behaving like
one. I signed some papers at a lawyers
office and the property was mine. His family were
furious. Apparently the house had been in the
family for generations and they thought it should
stay that way. I was an usurper, I had come
barging in at the last minute, screwed Trev a
couple of times and made off with the loot. In
their eyes I was a witch I had bewitched
Trevor, cast a spell on his mind. They thought I
had convinced him to change the will but I had
done no such thing. The will had been made of
Trevors own volition I had not known
anything about it until it had been read at the
I decided to make my way to
the South Cotswolds to scope out my new property.
I had the address programmed into my phone. I
packed my suitcase and popped it in the back of
the sports car Philip had left me. I jumped on
the M4, and was there four hours later, after
having gotten lost a few times and having to
backtrack. The journey was something I would have
to learn to perfect. When I arrived I saw that
one set of neighbours were out watering their
roses. I parked up and climbed out of my vehicle,
still hungover from the night before. I waved and
called out yoohoo but they ignored me.
I had them pegged as snobs, but as I was
unlocking the house, the female of the species
came across and introduced herself.
Hello Im Maude,
she said, holding out her hand for me to shake.
I shook her hand dutifully.
Tiffany, I said.
Oh, she said.
Funny name for a punk. We dont get
many of them round here. Punks I mean.
The thing is, I
said. Im not actually a punk. I know
I look like one. I just happen to have a mohawk.
Somebody gave it to me in an act of revenge.
An act of revenge?
Whatever do you mean?
Well, it goes like
I used to be a hairdresser, and I
botched up a few hairdos. I got a little slap
happy with the peroxide. Didnt really know
what I was doing. So they came for me after work
one day. A boy band and a model whose career I
ruined. I guess I got what I deserved. My just
Maude raised one perfectly
I see. This is a
quiet area. Serene. We dont welcome
She handed me a brochure
entitled South Cotswold Etiquette for
I looked down at the first
No skirts above the
I was wearing a skin tight
denim mini with gold studs around the hem. I was
already in trouble. Did Trevor not think about
how I was going to fit in here when he left me
So, she said,
looking me up and down. What do you do for
I pulled myself up to my
independently wealthy, I said. My
boyfriend was a doctor. He left me this place
when he died.
I see. So you didnt
afford it from your own money then.
I was silent.
And where are you
from? Have you been to university? What high
school did you go to?
I knew she was checking out
I went to the The
Thomas Lord Audley School they were voted
the most improved secondary school in Essex in
2016. Then I became a hairdresser. Why what
school did you go to then?
I attended Wycliffe
and read English at Oxbridge.
Oxbridge? Where the hell
was Oxbridge? I was bewildered but tried hard not
to show it.
I said, turning the key in the lock.
I felt suddenly intimidated
by this lady. It was as if she was interviewing
me. Whats the bet she belonged to ladies
societies and ran luncheons? I hurried inside the
house, grabbing my suitcase and pulling it in
with me, hoping she wouldnt notice that a
pair of frilly knickers had fallen out on the way
up the drive.
Inside, I sat on the sofa
and drew deep breaths. How was I going to cope
with these upper-classers? Was I going to live
here long term or go back to London? I had bought
a bottle of gin with me, so I poured myself a
I drank it too quickly, I
was about to pour myself another then stopped
myself, time to look around my new house, it was
two story, the ground floor had a big kitchen,
beautiful marble adorned the bench tops, ceramic
tapware, glass leadlight covered cupboards,
everything was so shiny, a far cry from my flat,
the lounge had beautiful furniture, Queen Ann
this and Queen Ann that, the biggest L shaped
sofa Id ever seen, cream in color, plush in
texture. Matching cream Cashmere carpet
throughout the house. I took my heels off and let
my feet soak into the carpet, bliss, upstairs
were five bedrooms, four poster beds in each, two
with ensuites, a spa bath, smoky grey tiles on
the bathroom floor, white tiles on the wall.
Antique mahogany furniture.
Polished wooden floor boards covered with
expensive looking rugs. Lovely pictures adorned
the walls. I wasnt sure who the artists
were but they were bound to be somebody famous.
I had another drink and
decided to take a walk into the township. I set
off past the cottages with their thatched roofs
and down to what seemed to be the main drag. It
was Saturday evening and I was looking for
something social I could lose myself in and
forget the recent events.
I noticed flyers plastered
to the walls of buildings advertising a band
called Major Threat an all girl band playing at
the Cotswold Arms later that evening. I thought
it sounded interesting and resolved to attend. I
took myself to a Chinese restaurant and ate a
quick meal of chow mein, then made my way to the
The place was packed to the
rafters. Punters jammed in to every nook and
cranny and the band not even on stage yet. Well
this should be exciting, I thought to myself. It
had been a while since I had seen live music. The
last act I had been to see had been a couple of
Milli Vanilli impersonaters in Brixton. Theyd
even had the fake hair. I brought myself another
gin, and nestled in toward the front of the crowd.
By the time the band came onstage, I was
pleasantly tipsy. I cheered and hollered with the
best of them.
The lead singer grabbed the
microphone with both hands and started singing.
Her gravely vocals filled the room. The drummer
pounded out the beats, keeping good time. Her
hair was blue and green at the front and hung
down over one eye.
They played mostly original punk numbers but also
did a great cover of Pretty in Pink by the
Phychadelic Furs, also Here Comes the Sun.
I started dancing to the
beat, inadvertently spilling my drink over the
man standing next to me, I didnt even
acknowledge or apologise, with three dead men in
my past, I decided it best I leave off liasing
with men. I would be celibate for now. I couldnt
afford to have any more boyfriends die or people
would start talking. I would be branded a witch
and possibly burnt at the stake or stoned to
At half time, I saw the
band head backstage and out through a side door.
I nipped outside too. I had only seen them play
for three quarters of an hour but I was a groupie,
full of admiration.
They were standing near
some garbage cans smoking, drinking and talking
amongst themselves. I was a little intimidated by
the lead singer so I approached the the drummer.
Great show, I
replied, then held out a hand for me to shake.
Cool hair. Said
Thanks, I said
not mentioning that the hairdo had been inflicted
upon me against my will. She gestured towards the
rest of the band.
This is my band Major
Threat. This is Heather, Kate and Floss.
Floss was the lead singer.
She had black and white striped dreadlocks that
reached to her waist and wore tight black leather
pants and a black singlet top with Boss
written on it.
This is the last
night of our national tour, Explained
Theres been a
stuff up with our B&B bookings we dont
have anywhere to stay for the night.
She looked at me
Well, I replied.
As luck would have it,
I have just inherited a lovely property not far
from here. Youre welcome to come and stay
Caitlin glanced at the
other band members.
Did you hear that
ladies? An offer of a bed for the night.
Floss came over.
Could you really put
us up? Wed be ever so grateful. We can cook
breakfast for you in the morning.
So thats how I found
myself later on that night heading to my new home
with Major Threat in tow. They packed all their
gear into an old Combi van and we headed to the
house I had just inherited. Life was good, never
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