Tom O' Row
"Andrea, what's wrong?"
"I had a visit yesterday..."
"A visit from Tom O' Row."
"Do you not know about the legend of Tom O' Row?"
"No, I don't think so."
"Seriously Mike! It's a story that has been shared across generations and although I know the story well, I never once believed it."
"Maybe I have heard of it. What is it?"
"Tom O' Row is an ugly looking little goblin man, thing, that is said to visit you and whatever he says will come true the very next day. Why are you laughing?"
"Sorry but an ugly little goblin. Isn't that lacking a touch of creativity?"
"I'm going to ignore that."
"Does he wear a little green suit as well?"
"Are you going to take me seriously or what?"
"Okay sorry, I'll try."
"Tom O' Row visits you and.."
"Hang on, hang on. Tom O' Row as in tom-orrow. This is hilarious."
"Oh yeah ha ha ha, It's fucking funny isn't it Michael. Keep laughing and see how you feel once you're dead!"
"I was told that today you would die."
"Who said this to you? Was it an online prank like that MoMo thing a few years back."
"No. I told you already. It was Tom O' Row. He was stood in the doorway to my bathroom as I got out of the shower and just said "Tomorrow your oldest friend will die. After that the door slammed shut and once I composed myself, he was gone. I called downstairs and there was no one else in the house. I checked all the doors and windows and they were locked. I tried calling you but you were away so now is the first time I've been able to speak to you."
"So let me get this straight. You were home alone when this little goblin guy called Tom watched you having a shower then when you spotted him he made up some crap about killing me and then ran off. You then, decided to tell me the day after which I guess is technically the day I die. What the fuck."
"I know it sounds weird but as I said, this legend is something I've heard to be true and now it is here. He came to me Michael. I'm scared."
"I'm not. Look if I died on the way home then I'd be dead. You'd be freaking out because you believed you could have prevented it but I wouldn't know because I'm dead."
"Michael I'm sorry. Please don't be mad at me. I got scared but I'm here now and you're safe. Please let me stay with you until midnight so I know you'll be ok."
"You know that can't happen. I have work later and Jill will not want you hanging around for the next load of hours."
"Because of what happened?"
"Because of what happened."
"But that was years ago. You're my oldest friend and yes something happened but that's behind us. Anyway, you and her weren't even an item back then."
"Do you think that matters?"
"I don't know what you see in her."
"And there we have it. This is why she doesn't like you."
"At least keep in touch with me for the rest of the day."
"What do you mean?"
"When I text you just text me back straight away. Even if it's just a thumbs up, just so I know you're ok."
"I told you I'm at work."
"Tell them you need to keep your phone on you as you have a family emergency or something you need to deal with."
"Yes, look. Make up something for tonight. I can't handle this. I'm freaking out."
"Ok I promise to reply to you when you text. Just don't make it every few minutes."
"Up until midnight?"
"Yeah, up until midnight. Now, can you let go of my arm as I need to get home."
"Sorry. Take care Michael."
"I'll be fine Andrea. Speak to you later."
Andrea please can you give it a rest for a n hour or so. You are texting me way too often & my boss is going to give me shit about this if it carries on.
I need to know ur ok xx
I am fine. I'm having to take another bathroom break just so I can reply back to you.
soz M xx
I'm going now as I need to get back to work.
k. Txt me when u finish ur shift xx
take care M xx
M u finished? xx
R u there?? xx
M plz answer ur phone
Andrea I'm fine. Got a beating after my shift for being on my phone.
Thank god ur ok. I was so worried. Can I call u? xx
No. Jill is driving me home. I'll text you after midnight. Can you please give me some space after that.
Course. Spk soon xx
It's 12.10am & I'm home. Drinking a cold beer & chilling.
I'm so relieved. U sure ur ok? xx
Yeah I'm fine. Turning my phone off now if that's ok? Take care Andrea x
"Morning darling, you ok?"
"Morning Mam, had a bit of a rough night but otherwise I'm good. What's for breakfast?"
"Andrea, can I talk to you first."
"Please sit down."
"Mum you're scaring me now. What's wrong? Have you been crying?"
"It's Gail. She was killed yesterday in a car accident. I'm so sorry."
"Gail? No, how?"
"There was an accident when a HGV of some kind collided with her car. I don't know the details."
"I... I don't know..."
"Come here darling. This is a terrible shock for us all. I know she was quite a few years older than you but you did seem to be good friends."
"Yeah she used to let me use her fake ID all the time."
"Come and give me a hug."I need it and I'm sure you do too."
"Whoa, what... oldest friend? She was my oldest friend?"
"You ok Andrea? Would you like me to get you some water?"
"She was my oldest friend. FUCK!"
"Andrea what's wrong?"
"Tom told me. He fucking told me. I could have prevented this."
"Andrea honey, you're scaring me. Please sit down."
"Michael. It's all his fucking fault. Why didn't I see this coming?"
"What has Michael got to do with this?"
"I thought he was going to die yesterday so I focused everything on him and now Gail is dead."
"This has been a terrible shock Andrea. Please sit down and let me make you a nice strong cuppa."
"Andrea wait, where are you going love?"
END OF PART ONE