Pittown: Firsts and Seconds

Chapter 7: Edgars Lake

Edgar was not only named after the famous clairvoyant, Edgar Cayce, but he was also named after his great grandfather, Edgar I, who lived in Pittown all his life. Those days, Pittown was an agricultural area. Later, it became a residential and industrial area. Edgar I built a concrete weir and dammed the creek running through his property creating a lake for wildlife. He bequeathed that part of his property to the people of Pittown. It was aptly named Edgars Lake. It was the lake at the bottom of Merlyn’s street. Pittown became more populated. The industries were unrestrained by anti-pollution laws, the lake became contaminated, the fish died, and the birdlife went elsewhere. Eventually, Edgar I’s granddaughter, Enid, formed a committee to clean up the lake. They lobbied the government for funds to continue their work. The lake was drained, the weir was repaired which improved the water flow, a low-flow bypass wetlands area was created to assist with silt build-up, litter traps were installed, and the wildlife returned. Although nowadays, the lake still had some rubbish in it, it was a far cry from the dead state it was before Enid’s work.

Merlyn had taken to making Edgar II’s dinner along with Enid’s and leaving it in the fridge for him. Edgar wasn’t much of a cook. He normally ordered Uber Eats once he arrived home from work. Merlyn told him that it was no trouble. She realised how tiring it would be to work all day and then be tied to his mother’s house as soon as he came home. It wasn’t maintainable, but Edgar said he would do it for now. He appreciated Merlyn’s kindness.

One evening, seeing how tired Edgar was on returning to his mother’s house, Merlyn said, “Why don’t you go for a walk down to your great grandfather’s lake?”

“I can’t hold you up any longer,” said Edgar who was already late home from work.

Merlyn saw the foggy look in Edgar’s eyes and said, “Please, I’m fine. I have no one at home. The fresh air will blow away the cobwebs.”

Feeling too tired to object, Edgar set off for a walk and returned a new man. From that day, Merlyn and Edgar became firm friends. Regardless of their different positions in life, they were the same in friendship. Both intelligent, in different ways, they enjoyed talking to one another. The area of intelligence that they had in common was their ability to read people. They were equally insightful, astute, and telepathic. Edgar began running business ideas past Merlyn. He didn’t ask her about the technicalities of the financial world of which she knew nothing. He asked her questions about the way she thought ordinary people would react to things he wanted to do in his business. Edgar was very conscious of providing an excellent service to the average, financially-illiterate person. He asked Merlyn things like: What do you think people think this word means? What do you think of this idea? He showed her videos of CEOs of companies he was considering investing in and asked her opinion of the person: Do you think he’s smart? Do you think she’s ethical? Do you think he’s passionate about the business? Do you think he’s mentally stable? He not only asked Merlyn for her opinion but he listened carefully to her response.

Edgar wasn’t possessive of those in his life and he asked Merlyn about her relationships and friendships quite openly. Generally, people ask such questions with the aim of assessing whether someone is a threat or not. Something about Edgar made Merlyn think of all the good and funny things that Ben did and so that is what she spoke about. She didn’t tell him about her recent miscarriage.

Merlyn and Edgar’s relationship was exceptionally harmonious. Both were naturally geared towards peaceful relationships and neither gave the other any reason to cause an argument. Further, neither found the other draining in the slightest. They enjoyed each other’s company without feeling that the other had taken something from them. It was probably the easiest, most harmonious relationship they would both experience in their lives. One would assume that they would, at least, consider a couple relationship as they were single and a similar age. Neither did. As intuitive as they were about other people, they were likewise about themselves. Perhaps, it was that they were too similar. Perhaps, they didn’t need each other. Perhaps, there were other people for them. Whatever the reason, it never once crossed their minds to be more than friends and thus their friendship retained its purity of intention unhampered by the complex motives of couple relationships.

Read/listen to more of Pittown

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