Wednesday, 24 September 2014
Teenage Holidaymakers in Marbella
Excerpt from the third Cleo Marjoribanks Murder Mysteries, Poltergeists in the Parador. Cleo and DCI 'Steaming' Kettle are on holiday on the Costa del Sol......
'Don't be so bloody daft, Trace, I've told yer and told yer 'e's probly got a wife 'n' kids,' an
accent screeched. They’re probably about eighteen and were standing on the edge of the
pavement ahead of us.
'Uh-oh,' I muttered, 'another ‘oliday romance up the spout.'
'As in she might be?' David queried.
For those of you who don't understand cockney English 'up the spout' is the same as 'up the duff' or 'bun in the oven' - pregnant.
'No. She's probably fallen for a waiter or barman. The old, old story.'
''E's stood 'er up. Hey up!' David shot forward and grabbed the girl before she was knocked down by a passing car. The argument had been continuing as we were discussing the subject and, of course, as we got nearer to them, which was how David was able to grab her.
'Oh, gawd, Trace I fought yer was a gonner,' her friend said as she grabbed hold of Trace to pull her away from David's encircling arm and could give her a hug. 'Grasseus, seenor.'
David grinned. 'I won't say it's nothing.' He looked severely at them. 'Next time have your argument in private so that when one of you wants to storm off in a temper you won't be in danger of falling under a bus.'
The pair of them looked at the pair of us - incidentally, I'm not in a caftan but cream trousers and a loose top to cover the bits and pieces. 'You're English!' gasped Trace's friend. 'Thank gawd. Tell 'em, Trace.'
'Why don't we find somewhere in the shade to sit down,' I suggested and they agreed so we headed for the seafront, the two girls - sorry, young women - walked in front of us, whispering. We exchanged a look but didn't say anything. They're a pair of modern young things, one (I think she’s really called
has bleached blonde hair with bright pink stripes. I know it's bleached cos I can see the dark
roots. Incidentally, her nails - fingers
and toes - match the pink stripes in her hair.
No idea the colour of her eyes as she's wearing sunglasses. The other one's got shoulder length mousy
hair with blue stripes and nail varnish.
Dress? What do you think? Short shorts, bare midriff and tight fitting
Once seated at a table under a sunshade and with cold drinks we looked at each other and said nothing. David, being a copper, used his favourite tactic of silence - I know it well! The young women kept mum. Okay, so it was up to me.
'So, are you going to tell us about the problem?' As if I hadn't already guessed.
'Wot d'yer fink, Trace?'
'Fer gawd sake, spit it out. S'not like we're yer mum and dad,' I exploded.
They looked at each other in amazement.
'Yer from the East End?' gasped
'Yup. Now, what's up?'
Angel? She's been dating an angel? Oops. Think, Cleo, it's a Spanish angel pronounced Ankel. All the men I've met with that name have been far from angelic.
'What's 'e done?'
'Disappeared,' her friend responded succinctly.
Uh-oh, she getting too possessive?
'What makes you think 'e's disappeared?' the statue by my side asked. Thought he'd gone to sleep.
''Aven't seen 'im fer two days,'
'Where does 'e work?' I asked, thinking that if he was a waiter or barman he wouldn't be off work for a couple of days.
David and I exchanged a look. 'Policeman?'
'So 'ow d'yer know 'e's a copper?'
'Showed me 'is card thingy.'
'Do you read Spanish?' David asked.
'Nah! 'E's English.'
Confusing. David put his elbows on the table, clasped his hands and put his chin on them then said slowly. 'The missing Angel is an English copper. So, is 'e English or Spanish?'
'English. 'E's from
'Is parents is Spanish. 'E's wiv
the Met.' (Metropolitan Police force of London).
'So what's 'e doing here? On ‘oliday?'
'Nah. 'E's workin' on somethin'. You know. Undercover like, which is why we've come 'ere on 'oliday.'
'As 'is cover?' I asked.
'Wot d'yer think, Kathy?' Oh goody, now we know the friend’s name.
She shrugged her skinny shoulders. 'We was goin' ter go on 'oliday so why not 'ere?'
'Where are you staying?' David asked.
'Got a flat in Torremolinos.'
I could tell the copper's brain was at work. David didn't want to have this conversation in public.
'So what are yer doin' 'ere in
'Fought we'd come 'n' look fer 'im 'ere. If we don't find 'im 'ere, I fought we'd go ter Malaga tomorrer.'
'Look, Trace, it's obvious 'e's dumped yer,' Kathy said.
'No! No, 'e 'asn't. Don't forget 'e was supposed ter meet me fer lunch yesterday.'
David interrupted before World War Three broke out. 'How did yer get ‘ere?'
'What's the address of where you're staying?'
'Why d'yer want it?'
'So we can sit down and discuss this in private,' he explained patiently.
Kathy turned to
Tracy. 'See, told yer they'd 'elp.' She hadn't actually. All she'd said was to tell us what the
problem was. I glanced at David and
hoped he wouldn't say anything. He
played dumb and Tracy,
fortunately, had forgotten.
She looked at her cyclamen nails while she thought about it then, tossing back her pink and blonde hair looked at my tame policeman. 'Okay,' and gave us the address.
So that we didn't lose them they came to our car and we drove them to their car, leaving them with strict instructions to drive straight to Torremolinos. And not to argue on the way.
'Blimey, I feel like a mother!' I exclaimed once we were on our way in the Merc.
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