Aicha Zoubair

Jessica Bell

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Not a Whisper by Donna B McNicol

Cherie didn't know which was flying faster, the coffee, the food or the gossip. The Klondike Breakfast Club, or KB's as they called themselves, were energetically discussing the fire that burned down a local business the night before and speculating about the owner's part in it. These folks, mostly closer to her aunt's age, were definitely not what she was used to in Tucson, Arizona. Back there, she couldn't call it home anymore, older folks mostly talked about their medical problems and where to find the best buffet deals.

Pansy Tucker, her aunt, was the unofficial founder of this unorthodox group - or maybe the unorthodox founder of this unofficial group would be a better description. She sipped her tea and listened to the voices rising above the clatter of dishes and silverware as everyone finished eating and continued sharing their snippets of gossip.

“Yeah, that fire was something else. The volunteers had their hands full. I heard they brought in the Bradford Fire Department, too. The chief told Tony it was so tough to fight ‘cause of the way it's been built up and added to over the years. That and it had probably been burning for hours before it got seen and called in.” This from the gentleman at the end of the table. Tom, Cherie struggled to remember his name, he's married to that tiny lady beside him.

The oldest person at the table, Bob Rounder spoke up. “Well I heard it was so bad the walls fell smack into the basement. They had to let it burn to the ground.”

“My Jimmy said it was really bad. Worst he'd ever seen since he's been a volunteer.” This from a woman who walked over from a neighboring table.

“Hi Janie. Was Jimmy at the fire?” asked Tom's wife, Edy.

Before Janie could answer, Ed Williams piped in, “You know this ain't the first fire at The Drop Inn. Back in the 80's and 90's when old Earl owned it, there were a couple of ‘em. Never burned to the ground though and he just kept adding on.”

Kat Daily, the owner and only waitress at Kat's Klondike Kafe, started refilling coffee cups as she listened in on the conversations. “More tea, Pansy?”

“Sure, but fetch me some more Sweet n' Low, too. Gotta watch my girlish figure.” Pansy hefted her more than ample bosoms in her hands, smiling innocently at her table mates.

Edy looked up from her coffee, “Did you hear about the fire last night, Kat? I can't believe The Drop Inn is gone.”

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Genre – Cozy Mystery

Rating – PG

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