The Castaways 4 (Pages 123-289)


Everybody in this novel keeps secrets.

I think one of the central plot points is what happened between Greg and April Peck. April was his student, a member of the choir he lead. April is beautiful, has a lovely voice, and is is the kind of girl who everybody notices. At that time Greg was not happy in her marriage and felt neglected in favour of the twins. That night Greg and Tess were supposed to go to the Drakes’ as they regularly did, but Chloe was running a temperature, so Tess didn’t want to go out. Greg couldn’t stay in the house and told her he was going to the school to play as he didn’t want to disturb the children. So it is then that the two versions of Greg and April differ. According to Greg, the girl turned up at the school, a strange fact as it was a Sunday at 9. Apparently, April had seen the light in the music room, and knowing Greg was there, she had decided to say hi. April was drenched as it was raining. So she took off her denim jacket, and Greg could see she was wearing no bra under her wet, white shirt. Then April burst out crying, saying that her boyfriend had dumped her. She threw to his arms, and after he comforted her for a bit, he told her to go home. April refused, and Greg insisted, saying he was going to call her mother, but the phone number in his directory was that of her grandparents, so he took her mobile from the pocket of his denim jacket so that he could find her mother’s number. April tried to grab the phone, and as they fought for it, April scratch his face, drawing blood. In the end he persuaded her to call her mother, and then they left.

April’s version was different. The following day she put a formal complaint against Greg for improper treatment. The young woman said she was in the school to pick up a book and went to say hi to her teacher. Then he patted the piano bench suggestively, and then played and sang ‘Tiny Dancer’ in a way that showed he was seducing her. He tried to grope her, and she fled from the school in tears.

Greg’s friends were torn, but they thought they needed to support him. Tess left the house for a week, and only returned when Andrea told him that she needed to give him the benefit of the doubt for the children’s sake. The only one who didn’t believe him was Delilah. She knew he was lying, but April was lying too, so nobody knew what the truth was. In the end the Chief mediated, and after catching April in a lie and her promiscuous reputation, the principal decided that April’s complaint couldn’t be accepted, and Greg got his job back.

Now let’s return to the lies and secrets all these characters have.

Let’s start with Andrea. After Tess’s death she can’t cope, and even though she refuses to take the twins to Dalilah, she hardly looks after them. It is her teenage children who see to the children. She keeps having outbursts. Examples of this is when she threw to the parterre the grilled steaks she had paid seventy dollars for, or when she threw her mobile phone into the sea, or when she smashed Greg’s guitar in front of the twins. At least, she tells her husband she needs help. The secret she keeps is her visits to Jeffrey when the two reminisce everything about Tess and her life. This is what she needs, to talk to someone who can remember all these moments, and Jeffrey is the person who best knows her after Ed. This is something that Jeffrey also hides from Delilah. They both think there is an element of intimacy and furtive about their meetings. I know that Jeffrey feels strongly for her, but I don’t know about Andrea. Will these visit lead to someone else?

The Chief, Ed, is also hiding things. He hasn’t told Andrea about the toxicology test, the opiate found in Tess’s blood, the calls from Addison on Tess’s phone, and the missing phone. He finally talks to Addison and Jeffrey. He asks Addison about the calls, but Addison brushes him off, and when he asks him if he took the phone, Addison denies it, and the Chief knows he is lying. When he tells Addison and Jeffrey about the test results, Addison’s reaction is to say that Greg killed her while Jeffrey thinks they need to sweep things under the carpet for the children’s sake. The chief also hides something more, about Greg and April Peck. There are two incidents that linked Greg to April Peck, which kept under wraps. One was when two of his officers were called to mediate in a fight between a mother and a daughter. The daughter was April, and the mother was trying to prevent her from leaving, and she kept saying that she was going to see him, the teacher. The other incident involved one of the same officers, and he reported to the Chief that he had seen two lonely cars parked on the beach. When he went to see what they were doing, one of the cars sped away, and its licence plate number showed that it was Gregs. And out of the other car came out April, claiming that she was just gazing at the stars. So this means that something was going on between April and Greg for a while. So why did the teenager report Greg, and then they kept seeing each other? Very strange. The chief never told anyone about these two incidents because he knew that it would only cause heartbreak.

Addison is lying from the beginning to all his friends. He was having an affair with Tess and wanted to leave Phoebe and elope with Tess. He is depressed and shattered, and seems unable to snap out of his grief even though Phoebe seems to be much better. Another one of his secrets is that he stole Tess’s phone, and he has information about that night.

Phoebe also keeps secret. She knew about Addison and Tess, and the night before Tess and Greg died, she went to visit Tess. Addison finds the text on Tess’s phone, and when Addison asks her, she reluctantly says that she simply dropped by to give her an anniversary present. That is as far as she goes and refuses to tell him what the present was. What is Phoebe is hiding? What happened that night? Did the two women have a row over Addison? Phoebe also hides the fact that she is weaning off the drugs. It is obvious she feels better than ever, and she now wants her life back. She tries to start relations with her husband, but Addison is not there, so she plans something else. What will that be?

Delilah also hides some secrets. First, she was in love with Greg, and that was the reason why she decided to take the job in the restaurant. Just because Greg played there several nights. Greg flirted with her shamelessly, and they spent many nights parked on the beach, but she never let him kiss her. She was afraid that if she let things escalate, that will destroy their friendship and their lives. So they simply flirted. The secret about the night before Greg’s death once again involved April Peck. The girl appeared at the restaurant, and Delilah tried to prevent her from entering as it was the time when the underage were not allowed in. However, Greg came between them and steamrolled Delilah, twisting her arm to allow April in the restaurant. Then to Delilah’s chagrin, they see them talk and laugh together. Then when the night is over and the restaurant closes, Delilah follows Greg’s car, and to her shock she sees that he parks next to April’s car, which is waiting at the beach. So this is proof that there was something going on between him and the girl. Delilah hasn’t said a thing about what she saw either.

So everybody has secret. The only one who is the most open and honest is Jeffrey, and even he has his secret: the visits from Andrea.

Not much has been done about the investigation, and I wonder if we’ll get to find out what happened that night on the boat and how Tess and Greg end up drowned. I am curious if someone drugged Tess and why. There is no reason to think Tess would use heroin, so how come traces of opiates were found in her blood. So intriguing.


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