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Chapter 9

A year having passed since the loss of their baby, and life for Barbara and JM had returned to a similarity that existed before the unfortunate experience.

With Katherine’s infatuation with the violin, the music from the classical masters would reverberate from wall to wall, room to room.

Sophia regarded her extended family’s well-being more important than her own, she reverted to putting faith or trust in few people.

Aleksander would be angry with me. He was always chastising me for not being more trusting. He was always more popular with our customers. They loved him. “Are you listening, Aleksander? These people are my new life, especially Katherine. She’s the same as JM, when he was a child. You’d love her.” She was looking to the kitchen ceiling as she spoke. She was expecting him to reply.

Both Barbara and Lucy had manageable clienteles, but, not put too much pressure on either family, Barbara would only allow a maximum clientele number. From her perspective, family life came first.

Lucy’s family consisted of her husband, Eugene, a US naval officer stationed at Dorchester MA, and two young children, Oscar, eight, and six-year-old Harriette. She had established her own clientele, but with her appointment register with vacancies, she was able to accept new clients at short notice. While she considered some as being worthy of longer care, others were only in need of someone to give vent to.

As a condition of his sentencing, Bruno Novak was court-ordered to undergo a psychological assessment. With Barbara’s practice registered with the court, Lucy accepted his case pro bono.

His self-harming was a concern for all involved, and deemed that of a sixteen-year-old, not a twenty-three-year old, was his mental maturity. Although, belying this notion was his physique. From working on oilrigs from an early age, his tallish body had developed wide shoulders and strong upper arms. Instilled in him by his father, was the suspicion of others. Working with the oil gladiators also had similar teachings. Mistrust of strangers. He knew it was wise not to ask questions of another’s past. Living with Jack had taught him to consume alcohol rarely, and by treating his co-workers with the respect, disputes were almost non-existent. However, being the son of Jack meant other riggers had to tread warily.

As Bruno grew into a strong young man he came to fear no-one, including Jack. He rarely spoke. Questions rarely received a reply. Only Roy Sanders had the ability to extract answers. The realisation that his turbulent upbringing could one-day flow from the trailer to the rig caused most to be wary of the quiet young man.

For reasons unknown, he liked Roy, and he enjoyed working for him.

Roy treated everyone equally, including the young Bruno. He tolerated Jack. Even when drunk, Jack was capable of outworking most riggers. Fearful of Jack he wasn’t. He tolerated him.

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