Today I am so pleased to share with you an extract of The Forgotten Village by Lorna Cook. I also have my review of The Forgotten Village by Lorna Cook up on my blog if this is not enough to entice you to pick up this amazing book!
Don’t forget to check out all the other awesome blogs on the tour!
‘It’s a beautiful building.’ He pointed at the top floor. ‘My gran used to work as a maid here, up until the requisition.’
Melissa made an appropriate noise and looked at the gabled servants’ quarters on the second floor. It was the only level that didn’t have any window boards. Every window on both the first and ground floor had metal sheets with Danger, Keep Out emblazoned across them. The studded dark wooden front door inside the arch was still in place and looked original. And uninviting. It all gave off a depressing and cold air, even in the heat of the summer sun. But Melissa was sure that in its prime this house would have been something else entirely.
‘I’m not sure Gran really enjoyed her time here,’ the historian said. ‘I must remember to ask her if she lived at the house’ – he lifted his gaze towards the second-floor windows – ‘or if she walked up from the village every day.’ He snapped back from his meanderings. ‘How are you feeling now?’ he asked.
‘Better, thanks.’ Melissa wondered if Liam would be back from surfing and worried as to where she was. No, of course he wouldn’t. But with no phone signal she couldn’t tell him she’d be late. In fact, she hadn’t even told him where she’d gone.
She stood up slowly and then reached down for his sweater. She handed it to him and he thanked her, putting it over his shoulders and tying the arms loosely round his neck.
‘I’ll walk you back,’ he offered.
Still feeling woozy, Melissa didn’t argue. ‘I’m so sorry, I’ve completely forgotten your name.’
He smiled and introduced himself, holding out his hand.
‘Thanks for taking care of me, Guy.’ Melissa shook his hand and then introduced herself before continuing to walk beside him.
‘Nice to meet you, Melissa.’ Guy laughed. ‘It’s been one of the more interesting ways I’ve made a new acquaintance.’
The church came into view. ‘I’m sure I’ll be fine from here.’ Melissa pointed towards the car park.
‘Oh.’ He sounded disappointed. ‘Are you not coming into the church? There are meant to be loads of great photos of the way it all was. And a talk, not given by me this time, you might be pleased to hear.’
Melissa laughed and looked towards the old stone church. ‘Maybe another day. I’d better be getting back.’
One of the guides appeared at the stone wall dividing the churchyard from the lane. ‘Excuse me, Mr Cameron. We’re starting the talk now if you would like to join us. We waited for you.’
‘I’m not speaking am I?’ he sounded concerned.
‘No, no. But we didn’t want you to miss it.’
‘That’s very kind of you. I’ll be right there.’
The guide walked back towards the church and Guy turned to look at Melissa.
‘Bye.’ She gave him a small wave as she moved towards the car park. ‘Enjoy the talk.’
He nodded. ‘Bye. Take care of yourself, Melissa.’