May 18th

Seeing as I haven’t written in a few years this may be a good place to start, given the unsettling message I received on my voicemail when I returned to the valley, and the chance encounter on the wharf. It drew me back to an old time with old acquaintances I thought might be out of my life forever. More on that later.

My time in the South had been taxing on my health and the cool New England air – how I have missed the weather! – has invigorated me in a way I had forgotten. I feel like an adolescent again. I have taken up residence on College St. at my family’s estate and spent last few days walking through town to reacquaint myself. My, how little has changed over the last few years.

This morning I sidled to the wharf and walked along the creaking boards bereft of any seaworthy boats – again, how little has changed! – and came upon a boy fishing. It was clearly during the school day, so I chided him, but he said his parents don’t ‘pay no mind’ if he brings home fish for dinner. He said his name was Jonathan as he reached his hand into his tacklebox and pulled out a black fish – at least I think it was a fish – that wriggled in his hands alarmingly. I had nothing to put it in and so declined, but he offered it the more earnestly, telling me he could catch as many as he wanted, so it made no difference to him. And then the fish made a cry, which I know is impossible. Fish have no organs of sound. I turned and hastily left the wharf.

When I reached my family estate I was out of breath, to say the least. And it was then that I found the voicemail light blinking. What I heard made me realize that thought my parents may be gone, I may well be expected to step into their shoes faster than expected. Hopefully tomorrow I can write out something that can shed light on it all.

-H. Walters