Agatha Humphreys made her way backstage. No one knows how she did it. Perhaps it was the fog hiding her from inquiring eyes. Suddenly she was upon Edward, who she addressed as Sir Crimwell. Edward stood there waiting for the ax to fall. He was suspicious of her from the start. And well he should.
Agatha Humphreys traced the Crimwell line. Since no other Crimwell lived, she handed Edward an envelope. He was reluctant to open it lest it said he was a deceiver, an impersonator–usurper of a noble name and was to be imprisoned in the Tower. Instead, it was concerning tax owed from the year 1509 in the reign of King Henry VIII.
As the only Crimwell he owed tax on the Castle at Crimwell in Darcy. Tax for five centuries? He nearly fainted. Agatha told him the Sovereign was holding the deed until the taxes owed during the reign of Henry VIII were paid. It took the Royal Accountant some time to calculate the Royal interest for 500 years. The Royal coffers were low and they were trying to squeeze every noble tax offender going back to the beginning of time itself. Edward owned a castle–a castle of his own, and without having slayed any dragons, or jousted any knights or fought in any wars. It was well worth the 7,259 pounds sterling and vomiting on stage….
Agatha Humphreys took her leave, and while walking to her automobile, began removing items from her person. The woman known as Agatha Humphreys shook out her long, wavy, flaxen hair, pulled the prostheses from her face and neck–wiping the stage makeup from her face and stepping out of the frumpy garb. Except for a trail of her cast-off disguise, the dull Miss Agatha Humphreys was nowhere to be found. In her stead was a deliciously leggy, blonde in a crimson Porsche, and in a fog…simply disappeared.
“This is it? This is my castle? I thought it would be bigger–grander somehow. It looks like a medieval church. Looks in decent condition, though. Sonya–sure it is not a church?”
“Yes, I am sure, Edward. There is more of it. We just cannot see it from this angle. Now, Edward, you do realize that the reason it is in good condition is due to it being on the castle registry. It is a historic building and as such was renovated and kept up over the years. It is on the lists of castle tours.”
“What? Tourists come and go in my castle? How would I live here with strangers coming and going? Tell me, how that would work, Sonya?”
“I did not realize that you planned to live here, Edward. I thought you knew. The Royal Tax Registry should have told you when you paid the taxes, as well they should have told you that you have a tenant living here. So you see, it’s impossible for you to live here….”
“Hold on, Sonya. I own this castle. The tenant can just move on…..”
Sonya Parker-Davies wished to run away from this…actor. Well, if wishes were horses…only as Estate Agent she had a job to do and a duty to Kathryn–not just tenant but dearest friend. Sonya enlightened Edward thus: Kathryn lived at the castle since she was a child. After the parents were killed in an unfortunate auto crash, Kathryn stayed on as tenant. She has overseen renovations and enthusiastically chips in with maintaining castle and grounds–having designed and planted the East and South flower gardens, and kitchen garden as well.
Edward was not so impressed. “Is there no grounds keeper, Sonya? Someone who does repairs?” Edward felt as though he was bleeding all over the freshly cut grass.
“Yes he lives in the village but Kathryn is the Estate Manager and does an excellent job of it.”
“Who is this tenant, Sonya, that you should take her side so passionately?” Edward began to question the truth of the sainted Kathryn.
Sonya had an intense desire to throw herself into the bed of hyacinths and crawl as an infantryman to the nearest foxhole. “Let us go inside–she is waiting, probably with a lovely tea. Kathryn is a wonderful baker. She makes such exquisite petite fours. You will like her, I am sure. Come….”
“Sonya, tea and cakes will not sway me. I am no fool because I am an actor. Both of you ladies plan to squeeze me until I yell “give” and agree to this Kathryn’s tenancy. I will meet with her but I will not be cajoled into supporting the self-serving interest of the woman, who is obviously your friend. I do not mean to be harsh and I apologize if I sound as such, but I cannot imagine what would persuade me otherwise.”
Oh, the naiveté of man when woman is involved! Sonya simply smiled….