Hello! I’m especially excited to share the latest episode of Unraveled with y’all today, because it introduces a new character. I’m rather fond of her, so I’m glad you get to meet her in this segment! 😀
Also, I’m still working out some kinks with the new blog design and address, so thank you for your patience. I appreciate you pointing out anything that’s behaving oddly! And I apologize that, on occasion, my site seems to go down. I’m not sure why but I’ve been trying to figure it out. Like I said, thanks for sticking with me!
Unraveled, Part 5
My head propped on my hands, I was fighting to stay awake when the bells rang to signal a new customer. I bolted upright and plastered a smile onto my face, just as my phone made a buzzing noise. “Hello,” I called to the customer, a red-haired teenager. “Can I help you find anything?” Yarn Emporium did attract a fair number of younger customers, so this wasn’t a surprise.
The girl let the door close behind her and walked up to the counter. I pinched my leg to try and wake myself up. “I was wondering,” she said, “if you knew anything about – well, this is going to sound weird, but about my grandmother’s death.”
That wasn’t what I had expected. I sat up straighter. The girl continued, “I’m Catherine, and my grandma was killed by walking in front of a bus – she was on the news. Irene Baker.” She saw my look of recognition and nodded. “The thing is, people think she killed herself, but that’s not true. My grandma was happy! She had a great family – not to brag – and lots of friends and….” She broke off, staring at the counter as if embarrassed by her outburst.
“I’m sorry for your loss,” I said, wishing I knew what better to say. But my thoughts were churning: could Catherine know about the Briars and Roses Shawl? “Actually, your grandmother – Irene – was here a couple weeks or so ago. Two weeks ago today, I think.”
“I know,” she said. “We were going through her things, and my mom found a Yarn Emporium receipt. It was the last place she went before she died, and I thought, well, it was a long shot, but – ”
“You thought maybe there would be some clue?” I finished.
“Actually,” I said, “I think I can help you.” An idea was formulating. Catherine needed to figure out what was behind her grandma’s death; I needed to save myself from the same fate. “Let me just close down the shop, and we can head out for some coffee.”
Ten minutes later, Catherine was telling me about the last time she saw her grandmother.
“It was the day before the bus incident,” she said. “I went over to her house, because she’d always offered to teach me crocheting.” I cracked a small smile at this. “I remember it quite clearly, actually. She had this pink shawl draped over her armchair – ”
I produced the Briars and Roses Shawl from my bag and let it flop onto the table. Catherine’s eyes widened. “Where did you get that?”
“Irene brought it in, two weeks ago,” I said, and told her what had happened. She listened, hanging onto my every word. Then I took a chance. “Can I tell you something really weird?”
“Weirder than what’s already happened?” One side of her mouth quirked upward. “Go for it.”
I showed her my bandaged fingers – the blood had stained one of them, which gave a great effect – and she winced. I summarized the shawl situation, and she didn’t laugh.
My phone pinged again, and Catherine followed the sound, looking at my bag. “Do you want to check that?” she asked.
“Yeah, just a sec,” I said, typing in my code. I had a few texts, which were nothing exciting, but there was also a new email with the subject line ‘Rummage Sale Shawl.’ Finally! “Oh, this is good. Do you mind if I read this?”
I quickly scanned the contents. It was from a woman named Rory White, which made me smile. She informed me that she had been given the shawl as a gift – “It’s a long story,” she wrote – and had regifted it to the rummage sale. “If you want to meet me at the rec center, we can have a chat about it, but I don’t know how much help I’ll be.”
I put down the phone and relayed this to Catherine. “Do you want to come with me?” I asked. “It might be helpful.”
“Sure,” she said. “Do you want to see if she’s free tomorrow?”
I quickly fired back a reply, and Catherine and I finished our muffins. She was good company, and I was glad we had met, except for the life-or-death circumstances. I glanced over at her to find her deep in thought, studying the clouds. Probably thinking about her grandmother. Then she looked at me and caught me staring, so I smiled.
“Thanks for the outing,” she said, and smiled back. “I’ve…I think I needed that.”
“Sure,” I said. “I’m glad you came along. And I’m sorry about your grandma.”
“Thanks. Me too.” Catherine sighed. “It’s just so hard to believe. What you told me. What if it was that wrap that killed her? How is that even possible?”
“I don’t know,” I said. “But like I said, that’s what she wrote in her diary, and I’m having the same problem.”
“We’ll figure it out,” she said determinedly. “It’ll be good, you know? Making sure she didn’t die in vain.”
That was an optimistic way of putting it, and I felt hopeful for the first time in days. We sat in silence for a couple more minutes, then I picked up my bag and put the wrap back into it. Catherine and I parted ways.
I’m happy to leave you on less of a cliffhanger this time! As always, I’d love to hear your thoughts. I hope you enjoyed today’s installment. 😉
Hope you’re all having a lovely Saturday!