The Canadian years, 98, the plan as good as murder

Door San-Daniel gepubliceerd op Saturday 28 February 09:10

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The plan as good as murder

‘Dad,’ I said, ‘may I ask you something?’ ‘Sure boy,’ my father said jovially. ‘What has ever happend with the gun that Evert had?’ The tune of the British Legion, and the recruitment chat ended and my father looked painfully surprised. All my senses were razor sharp, the time creaked and cracked at the seams and I knew that this was the most important thing that I would ever ask my father in my life. Though time passed normally it seemed to delay and almost come to a standstill and Betsy came slow motion with steps from the kitchen. She stopped at the doorway and studied me intently. We had come to meet in a macabre dance at last.

‘What gun,’ my father said’ in a tense tone? ‘What did that creep say,’ asked Betsy? He asked about  Evert’s gun,’ my father replied. ‘What gun’, Betsy said now,’ as if she repeated my father? ‘My brother's gun,’ I said again.’ It was sealed,’ my father said. ‘The seal was still there’, said Betsy, with a strange look in her eyes. She stepped slightly to the right and blocked the exit. ‘Aah yes,’ I said, ‘but not that one. I mean the gun without the seal,’ and I knew that all my feelings had been correct. I was the god of vengeance and I would not let go. Don screamed in my head, ‘if you want to leave the house alive, don’t do this, this is not the way, they’ll kill you!’

‘I do not know what you're talking about,’ my father said slowly, weighing his words, his voice rang like sharpened steel and had  become icy cold and he looked at me as if I was a guinea pig in a laboratory. I tried a different tack.’ The gun that you had asked him to buy.’ ‘I have asked nothing,’ said my father. The only two guns we had were sealed, you heard it yourself at the inquest.' I decided to change course.

My brother himself had laid the gun in my hands, I could almost still smell the oiled wood, it had been heavy. A carbine, a Lee Enfield, 303 .. ‘Oh,’ I said, as innocently as possible, ‘then he was planning to buy that. He told me that a few days before the hunt’.’He changed his mind,’ my father said. ‘Bingo,’ I thought, ‘now you're done for.’ I had held it myself in my hands.’ ‘Well,’ I carried on,’ I thought so because he was planning it,’ I. Now my father said it with more emphasis, ‘there was no gun‘. ‘It was his plan to do something of that kind, like for poaching, but it fell through.’ ‘I thought, ‘tomorrow I 'll make a statement at he police station.’’ First I'm going to Rico’s  and I’ll write a letter to my sister in BC which she should post if I disappear.

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But I said, ‘I could not possibly imagine him buying an illegal gun.’ ‘No, my father said,’ impossible’ and he smiled again but his eyes kept observing me. ‘I have to act as normal as possible,’ I thought, ‘this evening and night must pass, and tomorrow we will have to solve a thing or two’’ Boy,’ my sister called out, ’is it already time for a story?’ ‘Yes,’ I said, ‘I think so.’ ‘One that we do not know,’ asked Marion? ‘Like,’ I laughed? ‘About Betje and Netje.’ ‘Oh that sounds exciting,’ I said. Everything was almost back to normal. I got up and went to the little ones, ‘ Betje and Netje slipped, ‘I said,’ and fell into the ditch.’  ‘Ahh,’ cried the girls, the pinnacle of pleasure broke, ‘stupid boy, in the well,’ they puffed out. ‘the lazy girl fell into the well.’ ‘What lazy bitch,’ my father asked? ‘Betje,’ the girls laughed .. They were very keen on me.

Night fell, and my father and Betsy were sitting at the table. The girls I would not see a lot of years after this evening, but fortunately I did not realize that. They were in bed. ‘Australia,’ said my father, ‘that seems like a nice country.’ We just need to talk to you. ‘We have a proposal that you can hardly refuse. After tomorrow you'll be no longer in our lives.’

San Daniel 2015

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