Grampa Phillip was her mother’s father and after the funeral he stuck around for a bit. Natalie didn’t mind. She’d liked Grampa Phillip and it was nice to have him poking fun of Dad’s useless attempt at putting up shelves in the study, even if everyone else seemed set against acknowledging he hadn’t gone yet.
He received visitors now and then. Only one really, and he didn’t seem to like the gentleman much. Natalie giggled when the skinny man turned up and Grampa Phillip swore and kicked him out the house.
“I’ll be there when I dam well chose to be! Can’t you see I have a granddaughter to spoil first!”
When he did leave, they all went with him. The whole family, aunts, uncles, cousins; everyone. Natalie watched them all pour through the doors of Grampa Phillip’s house and set about business.
“Needed a good clean for a bit.” he grumbled, waving at the pile of newspapers from 1943. “Never seemed the time to get around it all though; so what would have been the point of startin’ it just to leave it again?”
Natalie shrugged and went to help Uncle Jim before Aunt Pam got hit in the face with a brass coat rack.
Half-way through they found the coat. Grampa Phillip’s favourite tweed jacket that he wore to every family gathering, no matter the weather. If summer made an effort then he would concede to draping it over one shoulder, but that was as close as he came to parting ways the old thing.
“She’s a faithful girl.” he said, brushing a piece of lint from the sleeve.
Natalie’s mother was the one who peeled the coat from it’s peg and placed it on the dinning room table. The rest of the family seemed to forget what they were doing and all merged in, crowding around to stare at the material.
“Well…” said Natalie’s father. “I suppose someone should have it.”
Natalie’s mother shook her head. “It’s too heavy! Who on earth would want to have that hanging off their shoulders?”
Natalie’s hand twitched but she kept it firmly by her side. Behind her, Grampa Philip leaned against the china cupboard and scowled.
“Parasites.” he muttered. “You know exactly who that belongs to!”
Natalie’s mother picked at the sleeve, frowning as the material dropped back to the wooden table-top with a thunk.
“What the-” she stopped and picked up the sleeve again, peering at the material carefully and running her thumbs in circles over the fabric.
“There is something in here!” she said. “Something sewn into the cuff.”
There was a scrambling for scissors as the rest of the family hunted for something to cut the jacket open with. Natalie watched Grampa Phillip swallow slowly, his eyes sad as one of his sons passed her mother a pair of tailor sheers and she cut into the sleeve of his favourite jacket.
“Remember what I told you.” he said quietly as the room filled with the ring of coins pouring onto a hard surface. Natalie’s mother reached forward to snatch up her prize, gaping silently as the tiny metal disks glinted in the light.
“Is that?” Natalie’s father asked.
“It is.” her mother replied. “These must be worth… I mean just the age alone… This is just-”
“Mum!” Natalie’s mother ignored her. “Mum!”
The second time her mother looked up, blinking as she did so.
“Nat- I- yes? What is it?”
“Can I have the jacket?” Natalie asked.
Her mother glanced down at the tweed coat.
“Here.” Uncle Jim said, quickly checking the rest of the material for abnormalities before throwing it towards his niece. “Call it your inheritance.”
Natalie caught the jacket and pulled it close.
“Thanks.” she said.
Grampa Phillips moved forward and put his hands on her shoulders.
“If I could, I would disown that little prat of a son.” he grumbled.
Natalie stayed quiet.
“Come on.” said Grampa Phillip. “I’ll show you your inheritance! I’ll teach you! What they have is useless, a quick buck! You Nat! You get the moulds!”
For the Scriptic.org prompt exchange this week, Grace O’Malley at http://www.librivore.com gave me this prompt: An Imperial crest.
I gave RevengeRach at http://penrevenge.wordpress.comthis prompt: "Well, I never," she said. "I wouldn’t have thought…"
I’m not really sure what I think about this piece so feedback would really be appreciated.