They’re getting closer to the end of the line. Sitting in Pomeroy’s searching the press release for hidden meaning and the whereabouts of Mark Liston. A cellphone rings – who would choose those opening notes from Beethoven’s Fifth…..
And even worse it was Janine. She had an artist friend involved in the Christchurch rebuild. She wanted them all to meet so he could show them some recent work. She thought Ian would enjoy it. “Yeah, right” he thought though he had to admit to himself that sometimes Janine was right. He asked Ian if they should go.
Maybe it was the glass of wine he had just finished or maybe he wanted to annoy Joe, but Ian’s answer to the suggestion was very positive. “But if he’s boring or starts to waste our time, I’ll hurt him. “Oh, of course you should” Joe added half seriously. That was more like the typical Ian Temple response.
They met Janine outside the museum. She was wearing her usual jeans and pale t-shirt. Her friend was dressed like a colour blind clown. She introduced them to Lucas Madox a local artist and contributor to the Christchurch rebuild.
One of the first things that Joe said, quietly was “What a stupid name.” Janine obviously heard him and replied, also in a quiet voice “I know, but don’t tell him, he thinks it’s fantastic.”
Lucas led them down towards the Avon River and showed them the Wall of Remembrance. Some of the flowers beside the names on the wall definitely needed attention.
The area around the Avon River was going to be paved and the whole place made for pedestrians. Joe couldn’t help but feel excited about what he could see and what he was told was going to be done. Some text in Te Reo Maori was being carved into concrete laid on the opposite side of the river. Eels had also been released into this section of the river and would be enjoyed, Joe thought, especially by children. It was their city too.
Time again to track down Mark Liston so back to Pomeroy’s and another “Old Dark Ale”. Almost completely black with an obvious hops flavour. “Best beer in the world” he thought. Temple would be here soon, ordering a wine (as he always did) sharing all its qualities with him – Temple was an intellectual and a snob. Probably came from when he was employed as a University lecturer.
Temple came into the bar and, as Joe predicted, he ordered a nice looking red wine. As Temple sat down next to him he looked with disdain at Joe’s beer. “I know you’re going to tell me so I may as well ask now. What’s that wine you’re drinking?” said Joe. “I’m glad you asked, this is a really nice Hawkes Bay Syrah”. “Let me guess” said Joe with a touch of sarcasm “It comes from your friend’s vineyard?” Ian Temple snapped back “I don’t have friends.”
Joe found a table for the two of them. He sat down and again spread the press release out in front of him. There was definitely more meaning than what was written. After his previous talk with Ian some part of this double-meaning had been revealed. The only thing he was stuck on was, why leave a clue that only his old lecturer would be able to pick up?
It appeared to Joe the clues were a way of calling out to Ian Temple. This puzzled him, as Mark Liston did not realise that Ian Temple was trying to find him to punish him for his deeds. Of course, Mark wasn’t aware of Ian’s work in helping Joe with the murder case, so he wanted him but not to prove his innocence. So there must be a different reason.
“What are you thinking about” asked Ian, “I want to bring this guy in, he’s responsible for so many crimes, by Alvin Taylor and myself. He used to hang out at Scorpio Books, his favourite bookshop, a lot when he was a student, It would be a good place to ask about him”.
Before the earthquake Scorpio Books was located near Cathedral Square . After the building was damaged it was eventually moved into the Restart Mall. It was the best second hand book store in Christchurch and in Ian’s opinion, one of the best in the country. It also reminded him of how things used to be before the quakes. It was a short walk to the Restart Mall, and the bookshop was easy to find.
Ian walked up to the counter and began speaking to the owner of the shop. He asked about Mark Liston and “Yes, he had been in recently. He was after something that we don’t stock” said the owner. “What was that?” asked Joe. “A map of inland Canterbury. I referred him to a local map shop.” “Did he say why he needed the map?” inquired Ian. “He said he wanted to explore the Lake District” the owner replied.
“Of course!” said Ian remembering his days as an English Lecturer. “He was very keen on the Lake poets.”.
A clue? Where will the Lake poets take them…..Chapter Eleven will tell you – the first Saturday of April you’ll find the next Episode of Nick Scott’s novel on ARTbop WORDS….
Nick Scott Nick Scott has a B.A from The University of Waikato where he studied film under Sam Edwards. Nick has retained a keen interest in cinema. He studied Te Reo Maori at Te Wananga O Aotearoa part-time for 3 years and then from 2014 to 2016 Nick collaborated in writing “The Traveller’s guide to Maori Place Names”. Nick is a regular Film Reviewer on ARTbop. Check out his film reviews on ARTbop. 2021 and Nick has several new projects on the go…….
Pomeroy’s is a Christchurch institution still trading despite everything that has occurred – this vlog was created “before Covid” Check out their website for current trading details and menu.
This is so cool – and yes a Chamber Orchestra is just what it says – it’s a group of musicians that would fit into a chamber (think palace) …..it’s not “the big orchestra”
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