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The Gentleman

  • Burnt
  • 16 March 2020
  • Uncategorised
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The elderly  gentleman, stooping over the portfolio of various engravings and drawings, enjoying and appraising the draughtsmanship of each artist, had chanced upon a drawing by Burnt Sienna, an obscure and little known artist with a marked tilt towards geniosity. Noticing some smudge marks  below the comment on the back of the drawing he lifted it up and out; an interesting comment indeed thought he.. there was also an address,written in prussian-blue ink (an ink he knew extremely well) by that same tremulous hand.

The address was not too far from his own studio and there and then, Mr.Blue decided that he would try to meet with the painter  as soon as practicable.  He took a note of the house number and street and set his mind to the task.That following Sunday, with a fresh breeze flapping his broad coat against his thin legs, the Doctor closed his front door with a firm thunk, and on a whim decided to make his way through the town’s small park to Collinghill Mews, number fourteen. The Park gates were wet with morning mist and the cut grass glistened in the sunbeams. Not a sinner in the park not a thistle of life save for the grandeur of the flowering shrubs and bedding plants He breathed in the fresh morning air and reflected on the anticipated meeting. He had heard so little about Burnt but found his work original and exciting. Arriving at the house, he tapped the ornate black knocker and checked his shiny shoes. The door was opened by a middle-aged woman with a carrot cake balanced on her head and a glass of LaTour in her left hand.The landlady advised  the gentleman that Mr. Sienna was no longer living there as his behaviour had been thoroughly shocking and at odds with common decency He had in fact left abruptly about seven weeks ago and remembered him taking very little with him, except for a brass fender and a cream-glazed Belleek vase, which he usually  used when urgency woke him from his sleep. The old house he had moved to was not three streets away. She gave the gentleman the house number, and within minutes he arrived at the old Edwardian villa, set back off Collinghill Terrace. The front garden was mostly hidden by squat, straggly hedges and old mis-shapen Potentilla fruticosa, pushing through neglected laurel bushes. Mr Blue reached out at the gate and pushed it open with his foot and stepped forward …a pride of feral cats scattered hither thither  from some thing they had been eating, in the middle of the garden and scurried back into the shadows of the old Rectory …