Mary shuffled over to the side table and picked up the phone.
‘Hello? May I help you?’ she spoke clearly; she hated when people didn’t enunciate properly.
There was a clicking sound then a female voice with an American accent set off on her prepared script.
‘Good morning, ma’am, please may I speak to Mr Frank Brown? I’m calling with very good news for Mr Brown.’
‘I’m sorry. Frank Brown is not here. I’m Mrs Brown, you can talk to me.’
‘No, ma’am, I need to speak to Mr Brown. I have some good news to give him, and I have to speak to him personally.’
‘I’m sorry, that won’t be possible. You’ll have to speak to me if there’s anything to do with him.’ ‘Ma’am, Mr Brown will really want to speak to me. I know he will. I have great news to tell him.’ Mary sighed. She hated these calls. She hated what she had to say.
‘You’re too late, he died last year.’
The line clicked dead and the good news lady hung up without further conversation.