Sophie James Novels

‘Although it’s a rather definite destination isn’t it, this little patch of India?’ Agatha asked. ‘Perhaps he likes tea.’

‘I don’t think he’s supposed to be very well.’

‘Yes Aunty said that,’ said Agatha.

‘Did she? What else did Aunty say? Really, darling you mustn’t turn into a gossip.’

‘Mustn’t I?’ she said languidly. ’I suppose I mustn’t. She’s actually pretty exact though Aunty. When she started talking about the Kidsons in that analytical way that everyone finds so tricky, well she turned out to be absolutely right. And she was right too when Valerie Head had her nervous breakdown, she could see it coming a mile off. It’s as if she’s got a sixth sense about people or a mystical eye or whatever they call it, and can see straight into them. Or else everyone just uses her as a confessor and she doesn’t let it out. Anyway she thinks he is atoning for something, some big dark secret. She thinks he’s burned out. The war has burned him.’

‘Imaginative woman…’



‘I suppose we shall find out,’ said Agatha.

‘Do you think he drinks whisky? She didn’t say that, did she?’

‘She didn’t darling.’

‘My own sources tell me he’s doing the charity rounds at the moment. Helping out at the temple, and the Red Cross. Playing with the lepers.’

She looked interested. ‘He does sound guilty about something… Is he catholic?’

‘Really Agatha, you must be more careful. You’re becoming very flippant. Life is rarely that simple. Of course if he is sick, then we must help him.’

‘Of course…’

‘Perhaps I can lure him in for a shoot, or failing that at least some tennis. Always does good to get away from the tea garden to the jungle. Makes a man feel more real.’