Elfie in drag

I heard a story awhile ago from one of my grandparents' neighbors, when I was taking pictures of my grandparents' house on a visit to the neighborhood... This was one of those "they'd die if they knew" things where it's been so long that everyone – my grandparents and the woman who told me the story, possibly Elfie too – have passed on so it can now be told.
 
Elfie was in town once in the mid-1960's and spent a few nights staying with my grandparents, and as the usual arrangement was he slept in the downstairs bedroom and got home late from wherever he was (if he was in a show he had a valid excuse, and he would be out on the town being social if he wasn't in a show; my grandparents didn't have a problem with the former reason but just accepted without complaining to him about the latter, though they did complain when he wasn't around...). They didn't give him any house rules to follow, but they did expect him not to bring anyone home at night. And as far as they knew (or ever talked about, or wanted to know about) he respected that rule out of courtesy since he was a guest, but there was this one time... One morning my grandfather woke up in the early morning – being a cattle rancher, his day started around 5:30 a.m. – to find Elfie and this young man sitting at the kitchen counter having coffee. Elfie did his best to tell a plausible story about how his friend Timothy from the play cast had come by the house only about ten minutes ago and knocked at the basement window, and so Elfie invited him in and started the coffee brewing, then offered my grandfather a cup along with an apology if they happened to have woken him up or having company at this hour was too early. My grandfather said everything was okay, he'd gotten up and dressed for work so it was fine by him if there was a guest, but in an hour or two when my grandmother woke up (and wandered out of the bedroom in her nightgown) it'd be a good idea if they were not sitting at the kitchen counter (which faced her bedroom) at the time. Elfie agreed that this wouldn't be good, and he could tell the message was not intended to be "you two should go downstairs." So while my grandfather was making breakfast for himself, Timothy said the standard set of goodbyes – "thanks for the coffee, nice to meet you Mr. Barnfield, I'll see you at the stage this evening Elfie" – with as innocent a face as he could manage then excused himself, and Elfie yawned and stretched and again said "I hope having him in for a few minutes wasn't an imposition" (to which my grandfather again said, "oh, no bother, and it's a good thing he left before Marge got up") then casually but quickly said he needed another few hours of sleep since he'd gotten home at 1 a.m., and he went back downstairs trying to look innocent. End of story.
 
This is where the neighbor said that while she was not sure if my grandmother ever knew about this visit, or whether my grandfather knew what really happened, but SHE knew the truth – Timothy had parked his car around the corner, so it was in view of her house. They arrived at the house around 2 a.m., and the car didn't move until Timothy got back to it around 5:45 a.m. Timothy was walking away in his broad coat looking calm until he got out of sight of the kitchen window, then he threw back the front of his coat and started moving quickly for the car as he attempted to get his pants back on – the coat hid the fact that they were open, held up by one suspender, and everything was untucked and hanging out. What had really happened was that they had heard my grandfather get up and Elfie was trying to get Timothy dressed and out of the house before my grandfather found out there was someone downstairs with him or noticed the car when he was leaving for work.


 
yes, another from Hunters Antiques, at yet another time. Special thanks to
Gabriella for encouraging me to ask the neighbor what people had whispered.

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