Tag Archives: Michael Dalloway

Not Quite A Dog

By Detective Deirdre Dalloway

What he got was not quite a dog. It was just a sort of dog. The sort-of-dog certainly acted like a dog, alternately running around in circles chasing its own sort-of-tail and wriggling around on its sort-of-back with its sort-of-paws flapping joyfully. But it was a sight that made Michael Dalloway smile and shudder at the same time. Because the dog was composed entirely of bones.

Suddenly aware of his presence, in spite of its lack of nose, eyes and ears, the sort-of-dog bounded up to him and within seconds Michael Dalloway’s fears were gone and he was sharing his trek with a bouncing, bounding companion. Along the top of the cliffs they went, and the dog set quite a pace. It was as though it had a purpose. Yes, it definitely seemed to have a purpose, and before long Michael Dalloway realised that in following the skeleton dog, he was getting further and further from the lighthouse. He was being guided by a dead animal away from the only sign of human life that he could discern.

And yet the dog was clearly not dead, in the conventional understanding of the word. It had no eyes, nose or ears but this did not hamper it. It had no tongue either, but if Michael Dalloway slowed down for a rest from the load he was carrying, it would seem to lick his hand to encourage him onwards. And when he had lightened his load by drinking tea and eating most of the biscuits, the sort-of-dog had sat and begged like any other dog to be fed. That the biscuits fell straight through onto the wet peat did not seem to bother it at all.

Yes, the dog was sort-of-alive, so Michael Dalloway decided to take a chance on it, and sure enough, just as the drenched, rain-blinded and exhausted traveller was wondering about regretting his decision, they cleared a small copse of dead trees and a dimly lit settlement came into view. Both of them now bounded through the spikey gorse towards it, the dog still leading the way through the darkness, now past simple, mainly unlit dwellings, to a rather more welcoming looking inn. Scratchy recorded music was audible through a broken window. The dog threw itself at the door to make its presence known and it was opened from inside by a man in an apron.

“Drury!”, he exclaimed, “There you are! Everyone, look! Drury’s back! We put your favourite tune on, old boy, to encourage you to come in from the rain”. The man stooped to tickle the dog’s skeletal jaw. “And you’ve brought someone with you. Do excuse my manners, Sir. I’m  Rufus Lypiatt, the landlord of the Squid and Teapot, and this is my pub. We welcome all unhappy travellers. I take it that you are one of those? Do come on in. We were just about to play ‘Molly Malone’ on the gramophone again.”

Find out more about Detective Dalloway here – http://detectivedalloway.com/ 

Michael Dalloway – lost in time

By Frampton Jones

Michael Dalloway was always confident that his wife would be along any day now, to collect him. If he told a true tale, and she really was a time traveller, then it may be supposed that his death will be no great barrier to this.

Time is such a troublesome thing that I have no idea why anyone would try to further complicate their relationship with it. Mr Dalloway of course is hardly the first visitor we’ve had for whom the time of departure for the journey that led here is as much a conundrum as the place of it. I can only assume that there is more to time and space than I am able to imagine. This thought does not comfort me.

I find, as I try to write something to mark the passing of Michael Dalloway, that I know far less about him than I do his wife. This is curious, having never met her. Many were the tales he told of her time travelling exploits, her detective work, and a talking dog called Elgie. Was any of it real? We shall never know. I have heard so many fancy and improbable tales from shipwrecked folk that I must either believe that all the world beyond Hopeless is mad, or that shipwrecking here drives people out of their wits. This seems likely, to me.

What we know then, of Michael is that he told a good tale and that perhaps this is more important than whether those tales were objectively true. Perhaps the belief in a time travelling wife who would one day rescue him kept him going in these otherwise bleak circumstances. Perhaps, in our anarchic culture, the idea of solving crime and handing out justice acted as a balm. He certainly kept us entertained, and I think that is how we will remember him.

And not the bit at the end. The messy bit. It is so easy to allow death to define the life before it, especially when writing one of these, but perhaps we should not. Perhaps we should remember the stories, and imagine that she really did come for him in the end, and not dwell too much on the infestation, or what he eventually did with his own entrails.

 

You can find time travelling detective Deirde Dalloway here – http://detectivedalloway.com/