I suppose I should have thought it a bit odd to find Master Johnny’s football pump on the kitchen table early on a Sunday morning as I prepared for my customary run.
I knew it wasn’t there when I’d retired for the night, but, since the machinations of Randall Towers can often pass me by, my butterfly brain let it go. Similarly, as I stepped out of the door into the cool autumnal air, I found Miss Katherine’s jacket hanging from the outer door of the porch. Why would she leave her jacket out here?
“Look what happens when I stretch my arms in the air!” she’d exclaimed. We looked. Miss Katherine, with her back facing us, raised her arms. The short dress lifted to reveal the lower portion of her buttocks. Lady Barton St Mary and I did our utmost not to react.
“Best not do that then,” I advised.
“Why are you wearing such a short skirt?” asked Lady BSM.
“Because you altered this dress for me,” said Miss Katherine, conclusively. No further questions, M’lud.
With that, she picked up her pre meal bottles of lager and headed for the door.
“I might drive back tonight,” she informed us, “But there’s free wine, so I may just leave the car at work and stay at Joe’s.”
With that, she picked up her pre meal bottles of lager, gave us a farewell kiss and headed for the door.
“If you do come home, please remember that Suzanne and Simon are sleeping in your room tonight with the girls,” said Lady Barton St Mary.
Lady Fairfield and Young Mr Raggett, my lovely niece and her dashing husband, had paid us a visit with Miss Lucy and Miss Mia. Although slightly cramped, having all four of them sleeping in Miss Katherine’s room was an adequate arrangement.
I stood in the porch trying to assimilate all this information. She’d obviously made it home, but the absence of her car on the driveway meant she’d been given a lift.
I took the jacket back indoors and set off for a bracing 5 mile jog in the drizzle.
Upon my return, everybody except Master Johnny and Miss Katherine had risen and were sitting in the kitchen, chatting.
“Well,” said Lady Barton St Mary, “I’m afraid that Suzanne and Simon had a rather disturbed night’s sleep.”
“Really? Were the girls poorly?”
Lady Fairfield gave me a wry smile.
“No. Katherine came home,” said Lady BSM.
It was at this point that the mysteries of my earlier discoveries were revealed.
At approximately 1.30am, Young Mr. Raggett had been fast asleep on theinflatable mattress in Miss Katherine’s room. That was until Miss Katherine crashed through the door and walked across his chest, narrowly missing Miss Mia who was sleeping beside him.
“Who’s shleeping in my room?” Miss Katherine slurred, bouncing off the wall in the dark and making her way to her bed. Lady Fairfield, lying with Miss Lucy, became aware that Miss Katherine was trying to get into bed with her.
“For a moment, Lucy and I started moving over to let her in!” exclaimed Lady Fairfield, “but I then suggested she slept elsewhere.”
“Oo ish it?” demanded Miss Katherine, swaying over the bed.
“It’s me, Suzanne!”
Miss Katherine then stomped back to the foot of the bed, planting her foot firmly on Young Mr. Raggett once more, who by this time was fully awake and just able to see the hunched figure of Miss Katherine looming over him, puffing and panting.
“Katherine, what are you doing?” he whispered.
Katherine was swaying from side to side, still making grunting noises, like an extra from ‘28 Days Later.’
“I’m taking me top off,” she said, writhing about a bit more.
Having been rudely awoken by being trodden on, Young Mr. Raggett now found himself confronted with a dilemma: his wife’s 19 year old cousin was attempting to remove her clothes and climb into bed with him in the dark. Whilst his wife and children were in the same room.
He did what any reasonable man of his age would have done in the circumstances. He panicked.
“Suzanne! Deal with it!””
At this point, Miss Katherine stumbled off into the blackness of the corridor. Lady Fairfield followed, using the torch app on her i- phone for guidance.
“I couldn’t bloody well find her anywhere!” she explained.
Later on, it transpired she’d crashed into Master Johnny’s room with chattering teeth.
“My feet are freezing!” she exclaimed to her half asleep brother, as she finally managed to pull off her dress.
“Ewww, you smell of sick,” he replied, helpfully, “don’t leave your clothes in here.”
Katherine seemed unconcerned and deposited her dress on Master Johnny’s bedroom floor. Later on, he explained that he didn’t want to touch the offending item of clothing, so he used his football pump to pick it up and dump it in the washing machine, leaving the pump on the kitchen table.
By this time, I’d realised that the jacket had been put outside for a very good reason. It honked.
By mid-morning, Miss Katherine appeared from her slumber in the study looking surprisingly unscathed and with very little memory of the night before.
Of course, being a caring, sharing family, we were quite happy to furnish her with the relevant details. Young Mr. Raggett has now christened her and the whole episode as ‘Goldilocks, the punk version.’
Her journey home in the car with a gallant young work colleague is another story, where a 25 minute journey took one hour and 15 minutes. Suffice to say he posted a photograph of the two of them together at said works social with the legend, ‘Me with the lovely little troublemaker that is Kat…’