After lunch, Emma went back to her room for a rest. She didn't think she would be able to sleep after the pre-lunch excitement and the worry she felt but she could, at least lie down for a bit. Her room always soothed her. Although it wasn't very big, it held the things she most valued. A photo of her late husband was on the dresser where she could see it when she woke up and from every point in the room. It had been taken when he was accepted into the police force and the sparkle of his eyes showed his pride and pleasure. Although passing years changed the trim figure and the colour of his hair, the sparkle didn't change especially when he was with his beloved wife. There wasn't a day that Emma didn't miss him and his steady calm.
The quilt that covered her bed was one she had made and the multi coloured Lemoyne stars brightened the room. The pale cream background was the same colour as the walls. The room had a window that faced onto the center court where residents could walk or sit at one of the many benches. Emma had asked that sheer curtains covered the window to restrict people from looking in but still allow the sunshine. At night, she lowered the mini blind to further increase her privacy.
She had recently started working on another quilt and a block with a few neatly attached leaves lay on one of the two comfortable chairs that were on either side of the window.
Emma decided that rather than lie down, she would do a bit more applique. Working on the tiny stitches would relax her. As she was sitting down, she became aware of voices coming from the room next door. Her suspicion that whatever had caused Ethel James previous commotion wouldn't be resolved quickly appeared to be correct.
"It's been stolen I tell you. You never believe me. If you don't call the police, I am going to phone my nephew and tell him how I am being treated. He never wanted me to move to this place. 'Come and stay with me, auntie' he begged. But I didn't listen. I didn't want to be a burden. Now I wonder if he hadn't heard something about this place and was worried about me."
"Now Mrs. James, I am listening to you. I have listened every time you lost something. I am only saying that we should do a bit of looking before we call the police. I don't want you to be embarrassed if they come and then find your ring had fallen behind the dresser."
Emma didn't want to listen to the conversation but both women were talking loudly and the walls weren't sound proof. She could hear the frustration in the director's voice and felt sorry for her. It couldn't be easy trying to please so many people as well as running the manor.
"I'm going to get one of the staff to come and help me search and.." Stephanie's voice rose to cover the other woman's objections. "And", she continued, "if we don't find anything, I will call the police. In the meantime, you have missed lunch so I will have someone bring you some food."
Emma heard a door close and there was no more noise. She lay down on the bed and pulled a light cover over her legs. She was feeling tired after all.
"What are you doing here? Get out of my room!" Emma sat up so suddenly that, for a moment, the room seemed to tilt. For a moment, she thought she was dreaming but the sound of breaking dishes chased away the cobwebs.
"You stupid girl! Now look what you've done. You've ruined the carpet and my favourite slippers."
"I'm sorry, Mrs. James, but I lost my balance when you pushed me. I 'll get it cleaned up and bring you some more food. Emma could hear the agitation in Jenny's voice and, just as she was wondering what to do, the director's exclamation announced her return. "My goodness, Jenny, what happened her?"
"It wasn't my fault. I was bringing Mrs. James something to eat like you asked and she pushed me. I lost my balance and everything fell. I was just going to clean it up"
"I didn't push her. I was just trying to get her out of my room. It was her that stole my ring."