I had another chat through the hedge with Sherrilyn – more buzz on the return of the teashop! Honestly, I don’t know where that woman gets her scoop from, but it’s usually on the money and I’ve learned not to waste time doubting it. There are some folks whose word you just have to take for truth.
Anyway, Sherrilyn tells me that Miranda and Jennifer have indeed found a new ingredient to base their tea blends around. This is in place of their previous and highly questionable centrepiece of powdered toenails, and I was hoping they’d go for something more wholesome this time. To my dismay, it’s not elderflowers or even pine pollen (which I’m allergic to, but is not inherently disgusting).
I’m not sure I dare put it in writing, as it surely won’t go over well with the townsfolk if word gets out. Suffice it to say that it involves the slow-draining shower stalls at the local gym. I shouldn’t have hoped for anything less from those two, honestly. They clearly have a thing for using the grossest ingredients possible to craft their wares, and are completely incorrigible.
On the upside, this turn of events suggests that the podiatrists local to Cheltenham are finally banding together and refusing to supply Miranda and Jennifer with toenail offcuts. That, I feel, can only be a good thing – more people need to know what they’re up to, but they need to be people who aren’t going to let the cat out of the bag and get all of us wyrd folk ousted. The podiatry clinics won’t say anything, because they won’t want anyone thinking them complicit in the plot.
It may also be a sign that the village is seeing a decrease in toenail conditions. Cheltenham has, in the past, been a hotspot for such problems, which meant the podiatrists had plentiful nail clippings to supply to the sisters. Maybe this is no longer the situation. In any case, I’m sure the clinics had the best of intentions – Miranda and Jennifer are very good at pulling the wool over the eyes of the townsfolk.