Marian Wood: Evie and the ‘Violin folk’

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Evie and the ‘Violin folk’

By Marian Wood 

Violin music

The haunting music played as I sat huddled up in a corner of my bedroom. The sad mourning sound of Evie and her violin. Once part of a popular folk band, she no longer left her house. The sound was beautiful, yet sad.

Two months ago, a gig had ended in tragedy. As her partner George finished singing, his body appeared to convulse as he fell into the audience. The crowd had caught him before realising that he was unconscious. Later a forensics report on his bottle of water showed that he had been drugged. An overdose of Tylenol had ended in liver failure and his death.

The police had not found his killer. The band hadn’t played together since, and Evie now played the same tune over and over. For her that violin was cathartic, but for me its sound just went through my head. I couldn’t ask her to stop because it was her only therapy.


Hearing a bang on the door, I stirred. I didn’t want to move but I needed to know who it was. Pushing myself up I heard another knock, louder this time.

Answering the door, there was a tall stranger, my heart jumped, what now?

“Hello, Jane Mills?”

“Yes, that’s me.”

“I’m Detective Inspector Moss and this is PC Ward.”

I looked at the woman, trying to place whether this visit was good or bad.

“Okay, err, come in.”

Showing them to my lounge I wasn’t sure whether to offer them drinks or just sit down. Feeling awkward, I gestured towards the settee as I sank into my armchair.

“Are we okay to call you Jane?” asked the woman.

“Yes, what’s this about?” I could still hear Evie sadly playing.

“We have had reports of a group of lads watching these houses. We are wondering if you have noticed them.” I thought for a moment.

“To be honest, I haven’t thought about it. I try and go out when I can. Evie won’t stop playing the violin, over and over.”

“She does sound very sad.” I nodded at PC Ward.

“Are these men connected to George’s death?”

“We suspect they could be. If you see anything, please phone the station.”

Getting up DI Moss passed me his business card.

“I will phone if I see anything. Is Evie in danger?”

“We don’t know, but she’s not answering her door.”

I nodded thinking how occupied she was with the violin. Too sad for visitors.

A day later

Sitting drinking my morning coffee, I was watching the scene out of my window. I now saw a group of men sitting on the wall across the road like the three wise monkeys. If the police hadn’t brought them to my attention then I wouldn’t have thought about it. I thought of Evie. I could still hear her screeching violin.

Watching them jeering, I picked up the phone. Dialling the number on yesterday’s business card, I wondered how soon someone might come. I then had the urge to try and talk to Evie again. What was the story? And why had George been killed?

Ten minutes later I heard two cars outside. The men started to run with the police chasing after them. Through all the excitement, the violin music continued.

A little later I watched the men bundled into the cars and I took the opportunity to check on Evie. Shutting the door behind me, I felt pain in my stomach, what was I going to say to her? Ringing her bell there was no answer, maybe she couldn’t hear me.

Deciding to check around the back I walked through her tall metal black gate. The first thing I noticed was the line of pots with just brown dead stems. I then realised for the last two weeks I have heard the violin constantly. She had spent so long mourning she had neglected her garden completely. Evie loved her garden, so though she was hurting, letting her plants die didn’t make sense.

Around the back

Feeling sick now, I reached her back door. Finding it locked I had a bad feeling, something was wrong. I regretted not checking on her sooner. Would I be in trouble if I threw a brick through the window? Pulling my phone out, I once more dialled the police. The operator advised they would be with me shortly.

Looking through her windows, I spotted her violin sitting alone on the settee. The sad music was still playing. It made sense now to have been playing on repeat. I couldn’t see any signs of Evie, but her dark blue coat was lying over the armchair. The weather was overcast and dull, there’s no way she would have gone out without it.

Hearing the police arrive I felt relief. Walking around the front I watched them force open the front door. As they ran in an officer held me back and I could hear the music clearer. It wasn’t long till a policewoman came out announcing they had found a young woman’s body.

I felt like I had been punched. Why had I not gone around the back sooner? Why had I assumed the music was Evie? She played the violin beautifully and I knew she was mourning George. It looked like whoever killed George had now killed Evie.

“Oh my God, err officer, err are all those in the band at risk here? Is someone out to kill them all?”

A memory struck me, a headline a week ago of a local car accident. I hadn’t read the article but had recognised the face of Mark Dunn. Another violinist of the violin folk. Why were they being killed one by one?

A few weeks later

I sat again drinking my coffee and reading the ‘Highton Gazette’. Turning the page Evie’s smiling face jumped out at me. George, Mark and the only surviving band member, Wilma, stood next to her. I could feel the pain in my chest as the story opened up in front of me.

The gang had been involved in a murder which George had witnessed. George had then threatened one of the gang members after a conflict in the pub. This had then led to them killing the band. Wilma was lucky that they were caught before they had come for her.

I will never listen to violin music in the same way. The violin folk had been a highly respected band until meeting the gang of thugs, leading to their final demise. A sad ending for such talented musicians.

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