Something really bad happened - and I'm not talking about the collapse of faith in our British parliamentary system.
After Holly and Daisy disappeared, I did that thing that mothers do and attempted to buy my way out of hysteria. We got new guinea pigs. They weren't pretty balls of fur like Holly and Daisy. In fact, truth to tell, Fernando and Jake were ugly. They were the only guinea pigs left in the garden centre - for a reason. One was grey and white and one was tan and white. One had really red eyes and one had quite red eyes. The words "scraggy rat" jumped to mind when you saw them, but hey, they were guinea pigs and hey, my three-year-old daughter wasn't crying any more. We bought them on Tuesday and put them in Holly and Daisy's hutch. We started to love them. "Looks aren't everything," I told the children. Yesterday morning, I dropped the kids at school and when I got home went out to feed them. At first I thought they were asleep, lying on their sides. With their little red eyes open. No such luck.
This is the thing that Liz Hurley failed to mention in her recent steamy ravings about life in the country - it can be bloody. A weasel killed the new guinea pigs. Which can only mean that a weasel killed Holly and Daisy, somehow managing to drag their little bodies through the bars of the hutch. Fernando and Jake were bigger so their neck-nipped bodies were left, a testament to nature. I'm saying weasel - conceivably it could have been a stoat but we saw it a few minutes later as it tried to come back to get the bodies again - a streak of brownish fur with a long tail. I'd have shot it if I'd had a gun. We're like that in the country.