This is a tale that should begin – once upon a time.  For this is a tale of mystery, magic and the unknown.

It was the bewitching hour.  Not quite day.  Not quite night.   Walking our country road I caught a glimpse of something lying on the verge.  A worn, sad looking bicycle.  Cast aside to rust away into the past.  I picked it up and carried it home


Painted white and graced with a chic seat cover I imagined myself sailing down the road on the way to a great adventure.  But no matter how I tried I could not get the wheels to move or the brakes to unlock.

 Late that night when the moon was a silver thought high in the sky I heard the sound of bicycle wheels moving swiftly down the driveway and disappearing into the dark.  Morning came and the wayward bicycle was back outside my window.


In the basket I found a neatly folded Paris newspaper.  The date October 31, 1939.   That night I again heard the whisper of wheels fading into the night. In the morning my mysterious bicycle was again outside the window.


There was a rose in the basket.  It’s petals still fragrant and fresh with dew.  Beside the rose a ticket to the Louvre.  Two people had met.   Admiring the same painting.  Then lingering long –  reluctant to part.  He had given her a rose.


And so it went.  Night after night there would be a whisper of wheels and each morning the bicycle would return and I would find  something from the past in my basket.


A wine stained menu.  Hands reaching across the table.  Fingers touching.  Heads close together sharing whispered  thoughts and future secrets.


She read to him from small, leather bound books found in old bookstores .  He loved the sound of her voice.    She would read until the darkness closed the words and disappeared into the night.


Around her slender neck he fastened the velvet ribbon with a tiny cameo. A remembrance of a rainy day spent exploring the flea markets.


 They listened to the medieval tale of tragic love as the music of Tristen and Isolde filled the Palis Garnier.    They lived in the moment.  They did not talk about the future.  They did not talk about the war.


The morning I found the glasses and the empty wine bottle there was an air of finality about the contents of the basket.


The next day a faded blue silk rose was fastened to the bicycle.  I knew the story was ending.


There was a scrap of paper in the bottom of the basket. I read the words.

Au revoir mon ami.

Au revoir mon ami.


Writers note:  Dear friends, There is a back story to this blog. The lovers really existed.  I was fortunate to have met them and asked that vital question “what did you do during the war?”.  You’ll find bits of their story in the comment section.

30 thoughts on “THE BICYCLE GHOSTS

    • And now my day is complete dear Tinny. You are the other part of me. If one doesn’t believe in magic .. then how can it be in this big wide enormous world you and I became the closest and dearest of friends. I’ve taken small literary license in writing what is a true love story from World War Two. A love story with a happy ending. XXOO L & V

    • The lovers in this story really did exist. I met them years ago when they retired to Vancouver Island. They worked as spies with the French underground during World War Two. Their stories of survival were amazing. XXOO V.

    • The lovers existed. They were b0th British but had been educated in France. During world war two they were parachuted into France and joined the French Resistance. They were trained as spies. After the war they lived in Bermuda and eventually retired to a small town just outside Victoria B.C. XXOO V.

    • This really is a true story. To meet and talk to these two very small, quiet and unassuming people you would never in a million years think they had done such dangerous work. I asked them if they had to kill to survive. They just smiled then give the slightest nod. They never spoke but for a brief moment I caught a flash of steel as they looked at each other.

    • Their story has been in my head for years. And I have told only a fraction of it. The very fact they were both on the small side, rather plain nondescript looking – hid the fact they were actually dangerous spies who ended up retiring to a life of growing roses on Vancouver Island.

  1. What a creative way to write their story!! Well done! So much is left to our imagination. The comments filled in the true story. I am so glad that there was a happy ending! Lovely photos told the story too.

  2. Thank you so much for letting us know the story was real and to read the comments. I thought this was just another product of your wonderful romantic imagination–to hear that it’s true makes it even more beautiful!

    • Ahhh my darling Gayle. There in is the secret of what I write. Everything is based on real life experience. My venerable years have allowed me to live many lives. My blog allows me to write about them. XX Virginia

    • Those involved in this tale have gone to “Kitty Heaven”, Miss T. It is why I felt I could retell the story with more detail. This would be a major endeavor. Hmmmmm XX OO V.

      • Well, keep us in the loop! I think you should do this. (I’ve been reading about the spunky redheaded spy from Baltimore, Virginia Hall. I’d love to visit the Spy Museum in Washington D.C. I think it opened in 2012?) Enjoy the day! ~T.

      • There is nothing like being nudged by a dear friend to start something new. I have ordered several books on the French resistance for research purposes. It will be a worthwhile project through the long rainy winter months. XXX V.

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