William Palmer's Grandsons

William Palmer is an old man with clairvoyant powers who investigates the death, and supposed suicide, of a young and supposedly homosexual teenager. Secrets fall from deceitful minds, and the mystery becomes very personal to William, as his estranged family and his pristine neighbourhood become involved.

Prologue


Walden Circle, Clarkson, Ontario, Canada.
Tuesday, May 12th, 2009.

The apartment is quiet. I am nearly asleep. From the window's height, and my own proximity to the window, I can see that the sun is almost up.
        "Dring!" -- "Dring!"
        I admit, I am startled. The day had not begun, and so I was not yet completely into my first nap, curled at his feet. Nevertheless, I was roused; upset even.
        "Dring!" -- "Dring!"
        He sleeps deafly, that smelly rubber in his ears. I rise, stretch, yawn, and set off to do what I know to be my duty.
        "Dring!" -- "Dring!"
        He does not stir.
        "Dring!" -- "Dring!"
        Stepping over his blanketed body, I quickly make my way over to his face. And then, the rhythm breaks. I pause, one paw ready to swat at his stubbly face. I expect another ring to beseech him. In the silence, by instinct, I wait. The ring is a mouse, and it is my prey.
        I hear a muffled sound. Then, unpleasant gases pass by my nose, from beneath the blankets. He's become more flatulent in his old age. It's not like when I was younger. I mean, can't he walk into the box, like I do, and cover it up with that air spray can?
        I'm sitting, front paws on his collar bone. I consider going back to sleep, but the prospect of him rolling over doesn't strike me as desirable. With pride, I must stalk this resounding prey.
        "Dring!" -- "Dring!"
        Left paw, then right paw, I bat at his chin. I wait for him to react, ready to jump off the bed if I need to. He's never pleased with claw marks on the hardwood floor, though. Yet I must remember, it's my abode, not his. After all, who spends more time here? Moi!
        "Dring!" -- "Dring!"
        He's still dozing like a kitten. But I'm not ready to give up.  Time to use my head. Backing up, I crouch. Then comes the pounce, claws backwards and head knelt down to hit. It's now or nothing. If my count is right, our prey will only give one or two more rings.
        "Dring!" -- "Dring!"
        "'Eroff, 'Inny," he dares to scold.
        I can hear it in the tone of his voice. I assume that 'Inny' is some dentureless attempt at my name; Ginny. I also go by Ginevra. I'm not good with language, and I'm too proud for most of his verbal commands.
        There's sleep in his eyes. His fangs are on his nightstand, in a glass of water. And the rubber chunks are still in his ears. Beside the glass, he sees the flat light.
        "Dring!" -- "Dring!"
        As it rings the fourth and final time, he pulls out the rubbers one by one with his left hand. As he does this, I leap onto the stable edge of his bed, digging my claws in enough to keep me from falling off the edge.
        And with his right hand, he picks up the noisemaker that had been hailing him. However, he leaves it on the table while he begins to install his jaws, which he has now removed from the glass of water. His teeth are blunt and flat, nothing to be proud of.
        There are no more rings. And from the noisemaker, I hear a stuttering voice, too faint for my house mate's ears: "D-daddy? Are you there? Dad?"
        As I've said, I'm no good with language. But I've heard one of those words before. That human male, now satisfied with his teeth and putting the noisemaker up to one ear, calls himself thus in my presence. That aging, white-furred human, he is my 'Dad'. My curiosity is peaked.

The End

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