Chapter V

Ok where were we? So Sarah delivered this bombshell about having a significant other. That night I was in a foul mood. How dare she be seeing someone! But I suppose, if I thought she was nice, it wasn’t unreasonable to assume that some other guy would too. She was over 21, she could do as she pleased.
I decided to go on some dates to try and get Sarah out of my head, But just like the Kylie song, I just couldn’t. But it was pointless hanging around waiting for her, She wasn’t hanging around for me, was she?
So I swallowed the last remnants of my pride and went online. Thinking back I think I was just in the middle of a big old sulk. Nevertheless three days later I was sat in a posh wine bar in Liverpool waiting for MozzaGirl556.
MossaGirl556 was forty one, pretty as a picture, and barking mad.
I stood up and looked at her in that – “you are the only other person in the bar looking around gormlessly so you must be my date.” look
“Mozza?
“Yeah! TommyBoy234Go?” (yeah alright, shut up)
“That’s me. Drink?”
And so we sat on stools around a tall table and I ordered two glasses of the house vinegar. Silence. I smirked and raised my eyebrows. She did the same. Someone say something! Eventually, I opened my mouth to speak but before I could utter a syllable, Mozza took a deep breath and was off.
“Well I don’t usually meet men like this, I normally meet them on the street – Ha! Joke there. So are you married ? I’m divorced I don’t want to get married – do you? Lets have a prenup at least! Ha! Joke. Anyway, the last guy I dated, this afternoon, Ha! Joke, he…”
As she droned on, her mouth a red blur of nonsense, I thought of Sarah. What was she doing now? Was she alone with her kids? Was she out with …him? Was she at home, with him? Were they… I really didn’t want to think about it.
My phone buzzed. MozzaGirl’s eyes locked onto my mobile. Then she looked me straight in the eye and said
“Who is that texting you?”
“Er, well I don’t know yet because I haven’t picked up–“
Then she made a grab for the phone. No, she really did. I got to it first but she had hold of my wrist. We began wrestling in silence. Red faced, our breathing became laboured as we fought with my Nokia. People started to look over. Eventually, with all my strength, I snatched my hand free. I gave her a “what are you doing?” face. She laughed and said,
“So, is it a normal text or a flirty text? I like flirty texts, don’t you? Ha! Joke.”
“’I’ll look at my own texts, thank you.” I looked at the message. It was from Sarah :
“Can we talk?x S.”
I stared up at Mozza. She gave me a resigned look, shrugged her shoulders and mumbled, “you don’t have to pretend to go the gents and sneak out, you can leave now, I know it’s over.”
It’s over? What was over? I grabbed my coat and with all the dignity I could muster, sprinted out of the bar. I left Mozza with her wine and her memories of a beautiful friendship.
I was standing in the street, it was pouring down. A giggling couple ran past arm in arm, huddled under his coat. They stopped at the entrance to the wine bar that I had just ran out of, kissed each other then strolled inside. The rain dripped down my badly cut hair and ran down the back of my shirt. I looked at Sarah’s text again. Fighting the urge to dial her number and cry down the phone, I text back – “ok”. No kiss? Tough Guy huh? You got it sister.
She text straight back “great, can we meet at that branch of a generic coffee shop chain in the precinct that is domiciled in the virgin islands to avoid paying it’s fair share of uk tax? x” (Ok, she didn’t say exactly that but I am mindful of our host websites ban on adverts).
I replied “yes. How about six, after work?” (please denote the continued lack of an x)
“Great, see you then x. S”
“Ok. Looking forward to it! XXXXXXX” (the mind is strong, but the flesh is weak).

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