The Diamonds

I first saw it around my aunt’s neck on 12th April, 1986. Even at six years old, I wanted it. Glittery, with an air of the mysterious east about it, the necklace was a wedding present from her husband Jamil, whom she referred to as a native of the Indian sub-continent. It consisted of seven ravishingly fabulous blue diamonds. The necklace was priceless, and so it was insured for an undisclosed sum and most of the time, it resided at the bank, which seemed to me to be an awful waste.

No one knew exactly how Uncle Jam had made his money, and I grew up believing him to be a thief. I imagined him tugging the necklace from the neck of an Indian princess after strangling her. The gold strands upon which the diamonds hung were of a reddish hue, as if tinged with her blood.

When I was nineteen and going off to college, I decided to ask my aunt if I could have it.

‘I don’t mean now,’ I said. ‘After you’re dead. Will you leave it to me in your will?’

‘Vanessa,’ my mother squealed. ‘You can’t ask things like that. It’s rude.’

‘I don’t see why. She’ll want someone to inherit it, someone who really wants it. Anyway, Aunt Sarah doesn’t have any children. Who else is she going to leave it to?’

I was not prepared for the bombshell. Nearly forty-six and Aunt Sarah was pregnant. The baby was a girl. Jamilla, after her father. Pretty in an Indian princess kind of way. I hated her. Not only was she beautiful, she was going to inherit my diamonds. I couldn’t bear it. I was going to have to steal it the necklace, as Uncle Jam must have done, with or without the strangling.

It took me four years of scheming, until their twenty-fifth wedding anniversary proved to be the ideal opportunity. The party was on the Saturday and the necklace was going to be out of the bank for a whole week-end.

Aunt Sarah wore it all day. I spent a great deal of time making sure that Jamilla had lots of jewellery to play with, all rubbish of course, but sufficiently shiny to intrigue a small girl. I also showed her how to hide pieces in different places, where the jewellery fairy couldn’t find them and whisk them away.

The rest was easy.

When everyone had gone to bed, I crept into my aunt and uncle’s bedroom, and took the necklace from the dressing table where it lay in a maroon silk-covered box. I put the box in Jamilla’s bedroom and the necklace around my neck. It felt warm, as if it had come home.

Of course, there was much hunting and many tears from Jamilla who insisted she had not taken the necklace. The police were called in. They searched the house and the garden and all the cars, but no one thought to search me. If they had, they would have found it nestling beneath my jumper.

Naturally, I can’t show it to anyone at all, but I don’t care. I don’t keep it in a bank vault. I wear it next to my skin and I love it. I simply couldn’t live without it.

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30 responses to “The Diamonds

    • Really? Surely not. Just the tingly thought of all those diamonds slipping around your neck…
      By the way, did you ever check out Lipstick and Lies?

      • The goosebumps were for: the very realness of “evil”…that spark of jealousy/greed…so…so…real. Well done!
        Lipstick/Lies: yes…I did and have checked out. Began reading/finished ONE and started on TWO. Life interrupted. Will have to go back to GO…not collect anything but a SEND ME TO MY ROOM card and reread all from start to finish. Question: have you received (thus far) any reviews/critiques? Do you continue to work on more chapters? Just curious…because I do see you haven’t added FOUR since my last visit….not a criticism…an observation. Honestly…I’m not a writer which means I don’t know the process authors grin and bear as they birth a book.

        • This is a book which is completely written and which has been out several times to agents. I have sent the first three chapters and it’s been refused. So I put it on here for a few people to take a look, see if it hooks them, see if they want more, see what the reaction is and what I need to change. At the moment, you are the first person to go on there and take a look. So any comments you care to make would be much appreciated.
          And I promise no cards, yellow red or send me to my room will be issued! If you hate it and can’t be bothered, just tell me. 🙂

          • No worries. I’ll take notes and feed them back to you.
            Will look at this “review” as my job for today. Afterwards…we’ll share drinks and sweets….I made fresh pear, dried fig and apricot galettes last night. It’s the whipped heavy cream that make the calories worth every bite!!!

          • Ooh no cream, please no cream. Don’t eat dairy. Although – the migraine might be worth every delicious bite! On second thought, sounds wonderful!!!

          • Ooops….forgot about the cream!!! Will not bring…no migraine is worth eating something you can’t or are not supposed to. You can have wine with your galette…which I can’t have….wine. We are now even…..

          • Like being even…. envy the cream, but you are right. Wine for me then. And the galette sounds scrumptious…

  1. Every little girls wish. A diamond necklace to wear always. Thanks Pat and I am now off to look at Lipstick and Lies – but how do I find it?

  2. Brilliant! I want Lipstick and Lies as well…

  3. I think I’ll keep Vanessa’s sticky fingers away from my home. Then again, none of my jewelry is of value, so I suppose she’s welcome to it… 😉

    • Vanessa has only room for one piece of jewellery under that jumper, so you’re safe. Mine you, she might develop a bit of a thing for ear studs – she could hide those under her long hair, so beware… 🙂 Thanks for reading Carrie.

  4. Thanks Pat – the email invitation worked and now this afternoon when visiting my grandsons, I shall have something new to read while they do whatever teenage boys do before dinner, 🙂

    • Great – glad it worked. Weird to think of you talking about this afternoon and I’ve just cooked the dinner! Don’t forget to tell me what you think – need an honest opinion here. Even if you think it’s terrible.

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