Gideon to Julie!

Back at the Merry Morgawr this afternoon for Julie’s meeting with Gideon, from the Tyack & Frayne series. Here’s what Julie said in answer to my competition question…

I would definitely want to meet Gideon. He is one of my favorites of all time, but I have no idea what I would ask him. I would probably just want to stand him a pint and chat! Though I would probably get tongue tied, freak out and ask him the time and run off.

Straight over to Gideon, then!

Hello, Julie, and welcome to the Merry Morgawr. I’m pleased we bumped into one another here. Please don’t run off! I am a very unreconstructed male and would prefer to stand you the pint, but other than that I am not at all scary. Except to villains, lairy Tory bankers and, occasionally, members of the Prowse family, although Darren seems to need the imprint of my boot on his backside far less often these days. He got that apprenticeship, will you believe. Doing well, and so far hasn’t nicked anything bigger than paperclips.

As far as the time’s concerned, you can always ask me that. I am a policeman, after all. I’m also good at giving directions, chasing burglars (with a bit more circumspection than in my hot-headed sergeant’s days in Bodmin), and pretending to take little kids seriously when they ask me the time for a dare, like they don’t already know it from their iPods, iPads, Androids and satellite-uplinked wristwatches.

You don’t need worry about getting tongue-tied, either. I know it’s not always easy to talk to strangers (and, as a copper, I have to advise against it), but I get lots of practice in making conversation with suspects. It helps keep them calm after I’ve arrested them, but hopefully we won’t have to go that far.

Lee is fine, thank you. He’s embracing the work-from-home-Dad lifestyle, which makes it much easier for both of us to balance finances with spending as much time with Tamsyn as we can. She’ll be in nursery in a couple of years’ time, and it all goes so quickly after that, you know? He’s really mastering the art of using a laptop keyboard whilst jouncing a wiggly infant to sleep, and at weekends and on my off-shifts I take over, or we pack baby, dog and picnic into the car and head off into the wilds of the moor, or all the way out west to Drift to see Jago. My ma’s had a new lease of life after her fall last December when she gave us such a scare, and she usually comes with us on the Drift days, with Zeke and Elowen too more often than not, so poor Jago probably feels like he’s snowed under with Frayne in-laws, but he doesn’t seem to mind.

So Tamsyn has no shortage of fans and baby-sitters, and soon – well, we do have one piece of family news we haven’t shared yet – she’ll have a new brother or sister. Elowen’s pregnant again, and now she’s past her first trimester, she says it’s okay to tell people. She and Michel are solid and happy together, and this time it’s the right time, so we’re pleased for her. And a tiny bit relieved, I admit. All that mess over Tamsie’s adoption tore everyone to bits, and I sometimes let myself forget that in some ways, it was hardest of all on Elowen. Lee and I hope that having another kid now will mean she can look back on her decision more peacefully, and I’d be lying if I didn’t say we hope it means she never thinks of Tamsyn as “hers” again. We need to get over that, and one day we will, but for now we’re a right pair of scalded cats.

We’re not sure how Tamsyn’s relationship to the new arrival will turn out. At the moment, all we can think to do is treat the baby as a cousin, like Zeke and Eleanor’s kid will be. We’re not about to hide anything from Tamsie, though – I have a feeling it’s going to be very difficult to do that – so we’ll have to let time and circumstances take their course. It won’t be easy, but nothing worthwhile ever is.

For now we’re just grateful that our girl’s surrounded by devoted family. Zeke’s become her staunchest defender, as I should’ve known he would: if the kid forgets herself and starts to levitate things in Tesco’s, you wouldn’t believe the look he can turn on anyone caught staring. Like – “Is it my niece’s problem that you’re having hallucinations?” And, you know, all the backup means that, from time to time, I can grab my gorgeous husband by the hand and wander off with him along the sunny clifftops.

Which still attracts some odd looks, too. Cornwall isn’t paradise, although it’s damn close, and there’s a lot of people here who mix up ideas of national identity and pride with UKIP rhetoric and fear of anything they perceive as different. In part, that’s what happens when you exploit a beautiful land for its tourist potential, create a huge poverty gap and forget the people who live here all year round, not just for a few pretty surfing weeks in summer… but it still stinks, and Lee and I try to fix a little bit of it every day – the resultant crime, the misconceptions about anyone who falls outside the gender/orientation binaries. As far as our hand-in-hand walks are concerned, I can do as good a “what are you looking at?” glare as my brother can, and we seldom have any real trouble.

It’s not easy. But, as I said before, nothing worthwhile really is…

Harper here, creeping in to tap Gid on the shoulder and remind him that Julie probably needs not to sit in the pub and listen to him all day… He says he’s sorry that the conversation got so deep so fast, but we both hope you enjoyed his answer to the questions you didn’t ask! 😀

Next week we’ll be moving away from Tyack & Frayne and over to Laurie from the Midwinter Prince books, to answer this question from Jan…

I’d like to ask Laurie if he could ever be persuaded back to Hollywood? Maybe now he’s older and more aware of how bad it can be he could be better prepared?

That’s an interesting one! Laurie will be here next Sunday to answer.


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