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Ahead of his Time

by Adrian Cousins

Copyright © 2021 Adrian Cousins

All rights reserved. This book or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever with express written permission of the author except for the use of brief quotations in a book review.

This book is a work of fiction. Names characters, business, Schools, places, locales, and incidents are either products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.

www.adriancousins.co.uk

Contents

1 Merlyn

2 Cortina

3 Brexit

4 Scotty, Beam Us UP

5 Summer Ball

6 Boycie

7 Flux-Capacitor

8 Quicker Than The Human Eye

9 Instagram

10 Olivetti

11 Magaluf

12 Corona

13 Walmart

14 10CC

15 Pony

16 Mary Celeste

17 Eliza Doolittle

18 The Deadwood Stage

19 Lusardi

20 Ginger Beer

21 Candid Camera

22 Hot Wheels

23 Mr Byrite

24 MI6

25 Annual Appraisal

26 Orinoco

27 Uber

28 Buzz Lightyear

29 Frenchie

30 Stifler's Mom

31 Timmy

32 The Damned

33 TCP

34 Black Queen

35 New Dawn

36 Guillotine

37 All Mod Cons

38 Spit The Dog

39 Bunsen Burner

40 Twiggy

41 The Long Kiss Goodnight

42 Honey Monster

43 Wacky-Backy

44 Friends Reunited

45 Blind Date

46 Mrs Blunders

47 Hamleys

48 Time-Bend

49 'Murrayisms'

50 Ferris Bueller's Day Off

51 Dad Dancing

52 Gold Dust

53 Sweet Jesus

54 Ahead Of His Time

Part 1

1

3rd January 1977

Merlyn

Grace often pondered if her sullen demeanour could be attributed to the cold winter months. Not that she was one for prancing around Stonehenge on the summer solstice with daisies in her hair, but she always felt brighter at that time of year. Although there was a slight uptick in her mood today after returning to work following the way too long Christmas break. She’d spent that on her own as usual and, as she hated all festivities and the shite TV programmes on offer, it actually felt good to get back into the office. Tonight would definitely stick another dampener on her mood because her pathetic daughter would be around performing her usual begging routine.

She cringed at the thought of what new ridiculous scrape Jess might have got into and really couldn’t understand how she could have produced such a disappointment.

Grace barged her way through the line of commuters who’d stupidly blocked the train station entrance as they waited for a taxi, all standing hunched up in their thick coats and stamping their feet.

“Excuse me! Excuse me!” she shouted at the idiots who eventually parted to make room.

“Oi, watch it!” a young lad called out, as she nudged him out of the way.

Grace marched on. “Bugger off!” she muttered, as she stuck her nose in the air and strode purposefully across the car park.

Grace was thankful she only had that short walk home, and the decision to stay in her terraced house just half a mile from Fairfield Station had been a good one.

After her promotion to full-partner last October, she’d considered moving up to one of the large houses on the exclusive new development on Winchmore Drive. Unfortunately, the property with the large corner plot had already been snatched up, and she wasn’t convinced the other houses were befitting her new lofty status. However, after procrastinating for a few weeks she lost out on all the properties, so had decided to give up on the idea. Anyway, she was comfortable and with Merlyn as her only companion, there was no point moving.

Grace stepped into the dark hallway and snapped on the lights. She plucked up the pile of post, flung it on the console table and lobbed her keys on the top. Swanking from side to side, Merlyn sauntered through from the kitchen. He rubbed around her legs and arched his back whilst pointing his tail bolt upright.

“Evening puss-puss, I expect you're hungry.”

Merlyn was the only reliable male she’d ever met and was quite contented to live her life with him as her only companion. The other partners at the firm were all male and often tried to treat her like one of the secretaries. However, she was a far more capable solicitor than her male counterparts – she knew it, and so did they – which made her so intimidating.

Her daughter, Jess, had moved out a couple of years ago, and now their relationship was strained even more than when she’d lived at home. Grace expected that tonight’s visit would be short and painful as always. She fed Merlyn and positioned the kettle on the stove, planning to have a coffee whilst waiting for her errant daughter. After Jess had left, she could then enjoy her evening meal.

“Hi, Mum.” Jess stood on the doorstep, wearing a long, filthy Afghan coat and that ruddy annoying smirk on her face.

Grace looked her up and down, turned her nose up, sneered and marched back to the kitchen. She assumed her wayward daughter would follow. Grace plucked her cheque book out of her handbag and opened the cover at the ready, hoping the request would fall below the two hundred pounds which she’d asked for last time.

Jess stomped in, following her mother after kicking the front door shut. “You not talking to me then?”

“Jess, how much this time?” Grace had her pen ready poised over the cheque book. The sooner she could hand over the cheque and get her out of there, she could prepare her evening meal. There was no point in small talk – that was all done. Jess had decided on her life path, and that was that. Grace was no longer interested in whatever scrapes she’d landed in, and a cheque thrown at Jess every few months to keep her at bay suited her. She tucked a strand of blonde hair around her left ear, peered up at Jess and arched her eyebrow.

“Well, how much this time?”

Jess perched her bum on the kitchen table, scraped her long blonde hair back and adjusted her tie-dyed headband. “Mum, can we just talk?”

Grace narrowed her eyes, stared at her daughter, and huffed as she dropped the pen on her cheque book, now disappointed her idiotic daughter wanted to talk. Usually, this encounter was over in a few seconds, with a

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