The Bishop

 Thanks for the rating, heres the next section i've been working on.


Godfrey sighed deeply, the bishop would just have to wait. Turning off the engine Godfrey tried to calm his aching head and reached for the glove compartment, where he knew he had packed some painkillers. The headaches and insomnia had been plaguing the priest for sometime now. But every time he planned to visit the doctor one of his parishioners would come up with a new and novel way to distract him. Today was one such day which he put aside for a trip to the doctors, and sods law – the bishop chose today to visit him.

Godfrey was sure that it was on purpose; he had long suspected that Bishop Finnegan was capable of mind reading or divination as he always seemed to plan his visits at the most awkward times of the year. Last time Finnegan visited was the weekend that Mr Thompson decided to commit suicide with his combine harvester; a dreadfully stressful time of the year that was made even more stressful when Finnegan caused an uproar by insisting on explaining to Mr Thompson's six year old boy that he father was destined for hell for committing suicide.

Godfrey was certain that Finnegan was the physical embodiment of the devil who was sent to earth just to spite him; and now Godfrey had to look forward to the roasting that he would receive for being late. Bishop Finnegan would never accept the excuse “the roads were flooded because of a bloody monsoon”, that excuse was far too rational for Bishop Finnegan. Bishop Finnegan was one of the those cliché fire and brimstone priests, what he lacked in palpable religious viewpoints he more then made up with efficiency and financial competency.


Finnegan was renowned in the Catholic Priesthood for being a wizard with finances, with a nearly remarkable ability to turn failing parishes around and make a sizeable profit out of nearly anything. The Church was willing to turn a blind eye to his questionable methods as long as the results continued. It was no secret that his posting to a bishop had very little to do with his piety, but more for his draconian policies that the church helped would settle the books in a series of parishes that had been a financial liability for years.

Godfrey had the misfortune of being posted to Finnegan's area, his service to the priesthood had before then been long and fairly uneventful. He served for twenty two years as the priest for the town of Upmarket. A middle class northern town, Upmarket was one of the more comfortable placements in the Priesthood, what it lacked in excitement it made up with stability. Looking back on it now, sitting in his car in the middle of a rainstorm, Godfrey had to admit that he missed Upmarket. His house, while not the largest in the land was warm and cosy. He didn't have to travel around these back alleys and the parishioners were mostly successful middle class families, a sharp contrast to the deeply conservative, normally working class pensioners that made up the norm of Husband Birch.

The best thing about Upmarket though was the lack of Bishop Finnegan. By the time Godfrey was posted to Husband's Birch Finnegan was already well settled. Godfrey was a relative newcomer to this area, the old financial issues having been solved by the time he came here. That didn't make Finnegan any less vigilant, and Godfrey had lived the past fifteen years in simplicity and half squalor so that Finnegan could report back a shining financial record to his superiors.

Godfrey finally felt the painkillers acting, taking off the sting of his headache. Through the murk of the rain he could see that the water was rising around his car, soon this entire section of road would be flooded. Groaning to himself, Godfrey started the engine in another attempt to navigate the roads, he didn't much fancy being penned in by the rising water. He decided that heading to Wexmouth would be madness, instead he decided to attempt to find Husband's Birch or one of the outlying farmsteads to seek shelter.

Although the painkillers made the pain more bearable, the sting had now become a mild thud, it still made the journey more stressful. The roads were deeply treacherous and Godfrey found himself once again playing the subtle game of trying to choose roads that were not too badly flooded. The decreasing visibility made this task all but impossible, but the rising water made staying still dangerous as he did not want to be stuck in the middle of nowhere with nothing but his emergency supple of biscuits in his glove compartment. Thankfully, the area was largely flat farmlands, but still Godfrey could feel the currents pushing against his car, not powerful enough to cause concern, but still unnerving all the same. He made a not so silent prayer to God to keep his car running until he could get to safety.

Godfrey knew that getting to husband's birch would prove difficult as he had been travelling for a good forty five minutes before becoming hopelessly lost. His best chance lay with finding one of the many farmsteads. He was not an unpopular priest and he was fairly sure that most, if not all of the parishioners would give him shelter if he asked for it. The crack of thunder started to intermingle with the crashing of the rain on the car roof, and against all odds the rain seemed to be getting harder as Godfrey turned around yet another bend, where to his delight he could make out a side track that bore the clear mark of a farm track.

The End

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