“My mother dothen’t want peath with Mith Milton,” said Violet Elizabeth. “Thee thayth thee’th a nathty dithagreeable old woman.”
“Well, she won’t feel like that when Miss Milton’s rescued you from a train.”
“But I don’t want to be rethcued from a train,” persisted Violet Elizabeth, bringing the conversation round to its starting point.
- Number: 24.7
- Published: 1942 (1941 in magazine form)
- Book: William Carries On
- Synopsis: William seeks to reconcile to feuding villagers.
William has something of a religious awakening after hearing a passionate wartime speech from an unnamed houseguest: “He said we’d gotter prepare for the peace bymakin’ up our own quarrels. He said it would bring peace nearer.”
So he sets out to reconcile Miss Milton and Mrs Bott, who have been refusing to speak to each other for several months (for unspecified reasons probably linked to the fact that they’re both insufferable).
“I’d gone to all that trouble to make ’em friends to get the war over an’ they went on at me as if I was ale Hitler himself,” said William. “I couldn’t help ole Violet Elizabeth gettin’ stuck in that loft, but everythin’s gotter be my fault.”
He fails, but not before creating a whirlwind of chaos that draws in multiple branches of the Milton family, the Vicar’s wife and a lawsuit for kidnapping…