In Grange Village there has been for centuries a family known as the Piccadilly family. The ancestry goes back a long way, but the earliest people we need to trouble with are Jonah and Elena Piccadilly, who had two sons, Horace Archibald, who spent most of his life as a camel seller in India, and is now in his eighties, and Pelle Amulius, who died of cancer a few years ago.
Pelle eloped with a woman not approved by his parents, took her surname, and they had a number of descendants baring her name of Holloway, which can be guarenteed to crop up again sometime.
Horace married a woman called Heather McLeod, who had a family and a brother of her own, and they had three sons in turn, Griffith Jonah, Gareth Holly, and Ralph Robert.
The eldest, Griffith, who spent his life exploring Antarctica, married twice, firstly to Gina Bunyan, and they had a daughter called Dawn, and secondly Oriana Falla, who had a daughter of her own, Sapphire, and with Griffith had a son, Nathan. Oriana's brother then married Gina, and they had two children, Savannah and Calvin, but they are a different story. You are probably confused already. But I know every detail inside out, and I love these people.
The second son Gareth is to this day in his late fifties, a bachelor, and a good-for-nothing guy who turned out best suited to being a binman.
But Ralph married Penelope Browne, and they had four children of their own, and, indeed, they adopted two others. This is the family on which I will center, for it is from this branch of the Piccadilly clan that my imaginings grew.
I shall begin by endeavouring to describe the six children of Ralph and Penelope Piccadilly. The four that were their own held the full names of Violet Heather Lavender Lilac, Millicent Mary, Peter Robert and James John.
Violet was generally called Vi, and at a time I am thinking of, in relation to the other five, she was twenty-six years old and mayoress of Harrington City. She was extremely young for such a position, but she was clever, and her appearance betrayed her age closer to that of sixteen than to twenty-six. She was a short girl, with brown hair that had been dyed black at University, and she kept up the dying so that her parents never noticed. Like all the Piccadillys she had sapphire-blue eyes with a sparkling nature, and her favourite colour was red, contrary to her name, by which you might suppose that she liked purple best of the colours of the rainbow. Also at the age of twenty-six, you may find this surprising, but Vi was married to Daz Harrington, son of the previous mayor and his wife, and on Sir David and Lady Guinevere's death, had become Sir Darrell, and his wife Lady Harrington. This pair had four children, if you can believe it, between the ages of one and five, but we won't go into detail about these children just yet.
Millicent was known to the world as Millie, and at this time she was twenty-two on today the first of September, and had recently given birth to identical triplet girls with her husband Phil MacLilley! Millie had red hair and those sapphire-blue eyes, and was an animal-mad, fun-loving girl with a great sense of humour. Several years ago she was indeed one of my best friends, but she had always too reckless a spirit for me, and grew up and away.
Peter was seventeen, and facing his last year at school. Having started life as a blonde hooligan, he had gradually lost most of his friends, who had failed to appreciate his rascal ways, and only realised this when he was just about fifteen years old. Suddenly losing all his outward confidence and going back to the beginning, Peter was helped back to life by Melika Cooper, a sweet and gentle wheelchair confinant of a year and a half older than him. Gradually they fell in love, and have been going out for two years now. Peter has had a book of his own published, based on a local legend, and a fairy story published in a book of short stories. He is destined to be a writer, although we would never have guessed it ten years ago. Now Peter Piccadilly is gallant and handsome, and there is not a girl in Swania who would turn him down, but Mel has already won his heart!
Finally Jamie is the youngest, at eleven. The only average one of the Piccadillys, every passion of his lies in car racing, and luckily that does not demand a great academic ability. He has brown hair, and is short for his age, with a babyish voice and a babyish manner, but he has a few good friends. He is not very interesting, but he is a member of the Piccadilly family, and so should be treated with the respect he deserves.