Margaret Cullingford - Author of Twins of a Gazelle - email

Twins of a Gazelle

Calista Blake suspects her husband of little more than a year subscribes to the notion "marry your mistress and you create a vacancy". Disillusioned, disenchanted, she hopes their holiday on the magical island of Ithaca may banish her anxieties. Instead she becomes spellbound by P.J. Wood.


‘Calista Blake, what’s to become of you?’ P.J. shook his head. ‘I’ve been in far more dangerous places than sailing the Ionian Sea.  You spend too much time on your own.’
‘Being alone never used to bother me.’ She told him how, before she married, she chose to live on her own, never finding it a drag.
‘There’s being sufficient unto one’s self, and there’s being lonely, not that I’ve ever really felt that till . . .’ a disturbing intimation of longing clouded his face before he gave one of his smiles. ‘Anyway, right now Ma needs me to be there for her, which reminds me . . .’ He glanced at his watch before putting on his Ray-Bans, then stood in one smooth movement. ‘She’ll be expecting me.’
She too got to her feet, wanted to say please stay just a little longer. Next year was so far away.
‘Before I go.’ He fumbled under the flap of a pocket in his shorts producing a card. ‘My Vathy address, my London address, my E-mail address, my mobile number. Send me a postcard, or a message from time to time, just to say you’re okay. Promise?’
‘I promise.’ She clasped the card, her most valued possession and placed it in the zipped compartment of her beach bag.
‘And, Cal . . . remember this. If you’re ever in trouble, if for some reason, any reason you need me, I promise I’ll come running. Okay?’
She nodded. She was choked.
‘Good girl.’
They made their way slowly toward the inflatable dinghy.
‘Next year I’ll teach you to sail,’ P.J. said as she helped him float the tender off the beach. She wanted to say, take me with you, let me meet your mother. Next year may be too late. She couldn’t say any such thing for fear of upsetting him. She couldn’t tell P.J. how content, how secure she felt, at the same time all of a tingle when she was with him.
‘Eh, that melancholy face again. Like that night we met.’ He kissed her cheek. She longed for him to kiss her lips. She understood why he didn’t.
Near to tears, she managed to smile. ‘How I hate Good-byes.’
He climbed in the inflatable and set up the oars.
‘Not Good-bye, Cal, Au revoir. And don’t forget, once in a while let your inner rebel escape.’
He began to pull away. She took more steps till she was up to her knees in seawater.
‘P.J. are you an archaeologist?’
‘God no.’ He rested his oars. ‘That was my father.’ He began rowing again.
She waded in deeper. ‘What do you do?’
‘I take photographs. Tell stories with them. True ones.’ He was pulling farther and farther away.
‘Where do you take them?’ She was waist-deep. Her pareo, unfurling, floated round her.
‘Wherever there’s trouble.’  He rested once more on his oars. ‘Twins of a gazelle, Cal,’ he called, smiling, before carrying on.
Twins of a gazelle?  What was he talking about? He had gone too far to ask.


Twins of a Gazelle

Twins of a Gazelle

Fifteen months married to Adam Burgess, Calista Blake realizes she may have chosen the wrong man. While on holiday on Ithaca, Calista has her error of judgement confirmed when she hears what Adam has to say about his relationship with his first wife. Her disillusionment total, on Ithaca she encounters photo-journalist P.J. Wood, her previous angst mild compared with the cauldron of trouble she falls into as a consequence of meeting him.


Twin of a Gazelle is to be published as a paperback and an eBook in early February 2015.

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