Stop read no further until you have read
One month later, the morning after a full moon.
The basement suite Bronwyn rented in the Shire was technically one bedroom, even freed (or forced?) from my celibate vows; I could not find it in myself to attempt a move from the couch. I sit cross legged on the floor meditating, as she is on a call in the kitchen. Acknowledge and place aside as Lao taught me.
Tariq and Lao have tried to have us meet for our usual ministerial tea, but shame is keeping me away. The parishners of St. Clare’s officially left the Holy See, the Bishop lost the flock once they heard that the land was to be sold, they are a true parish house network sans paid clergy. Some notes and cards of support, encouragement and simply “we love you” have arrived at Bronwyn’s they simply do not seem to care what official denominational oversight says to them.
The DNA came back from the traitor kill as inconclusive, but it was more than likely a parishners that could not handle their minister transitioning. Bronwyn is working the case.
The rising morning sun is glowing through the too small window slits the Holy Mystery kissing her creation good morning.
Bronwyn’s phone conversation is ending, and my mind is not yet centered, but my heart is getting there. The defrocking still rests on me, like the loss of a lover, my bride has been stripped from me by someone else’s volition for the simple crime of living the marriage vows as my bride called me to.
“Tuck, I need you.” Bronwyn said.
I uncross my legs and rise slowly, grab the flannel jacket and pull it on over my gray casual shirt. Bronwyn looks again at my cleanly shaved head, she is still adjusting to the loss of the tonsure on my journey, but there seemed no need for that simple sign of an office I no longer was permitted to hold. “Game is afoot my dear Watson?”
She glowers at me. Detests she does comparing out work to Holmes and Watson, I wonder if she would dislike it as much if she was Holmes and I was Watson? “Another Bible kill.” The short hand the SPS has picked up around the traitor killing, which means that the case is not as simple as they first thought, which means Bronwyn will get some of her team to begin looking for past murders within Canada that may fit the pattern (if there is one) because this many staged murders is definitely not normal for Sherwood.
Off to the Fit we go.
En route to the scene, this time a church, it gets more awkward. “Lao and Tariq keep calling, when are you going to meet with them?”
“And say what, oh by the way thank you for inviting me to ministerial but you see I have no credentials.”
“Bullocks, and you know it, Tuck. So some bloody institution doesn’t like the way you minister, the people who call you Friar still see you as such, what is more important the children of God or the Institution of Man?” Bronwyn said. And yes that is the question that needs to be answered isn’t it? One question that surprisingly I am struggling with because even with having pushed the boundaries of church life for so long, who knew that it would be some stodgy old Bishop that would manage to get the Holy See to act so rapidly and decisively on something that usually takes years to achieve when it comes to ending a clerical life.
And the more important question is why should the acceptance of a dying institution even matter to me?
Speaking of dying institutions, it is an Evangelical Lutheran Church in Canada congregation we pull up to. The crime scene tape is around the front of the building where one would normally see the church sign, but there is only the two stakes for the wood sign and obvious signs of a fire. Not good.
I follow Bronwyn, most of the SPS is used to seeing me around, but they are still adjusting to me without my robes, she secured special consultants dispensation for me from the Chief to be able to continue my work. The one win I had experienced this past month.
The smell hits me first in the night air, the smell of singed flesh, and my toast from the breakfast joins the grass outside the entrance doors. Bronwyn chuckles, as she dabs some perfume under her nose and offers me the vile, it does work to cover up the smell.
I think that is a body. . . and a Bible covered in blood a soot,
what is it open to?
- Fall Out Chapter One (tyragan.wordpress.com)
- St. George’s Dragon (A Tuck-Bronwyn Mystery) (tyragan.wordpress.com)
- Fall Out Chapter Two (tyragan.wordpress.com)