[The premise of this little scribble was that we were given the first line (actually from a story in Lord Halifax’s Ghost Book) and wrote a follow on from there]
After dinner, our host, who was then renting the place, told us that the house was said to be…
…scheduled for demolition the very next day. Unfortunately for the assembled party this has been a leap year and meine host, never the most worldly of men, had got his dates confused. So it came to pass that as I raised my after dinner coffee to my lips a chunk of plaster made a most unwelcome entry into the proceedings. The walls shook like an undercooked creme-brulee and the ceiling showered us in dust. As a man we stampeded for the door. However this was at almost the same time that the door, not to mention the surrounding wall, stampeded towards us with a deafening crash and a flash of JCB yellow. The retreat that followed would have astounded even the French army with both its panache and fervour. Surrounded by a cacophony of falling masonry, rumbling diesel engines and the occasional scream we headed smartly for the rear door; reaching freedom and salvation followed by a plume of dust and buoyed along by a chaser of adrenaline. We stood huddled together in the garden watching the remains of the house tumble to the ground ravaged by the bulldozers.
If there is one thing I can say about my host – he sure knows how to throw a party