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Can I Claim For My Heart

January 07, 2018 01:34PM


The restaurant was only about 10 minutes away from home so they arrived quickly. Liz parked in the driveway and Will pulled up outside the house. David quickly unbuckled his seatbelt and was struggling to open the door, so Will hurried out of the driver’s side and went to help him out. Once free, the boy ran up to Liz’s car and, before she had even had a chance to alight he was bouncing up and down and yelling “Mum, mum. You should have seen inside the car, it was like an airplane. It was great and the car can go so fast!”

Will came alongside then and opened the door for Liz. He looked a bit embarrassed at David’s adulation and hurriedly tried to assure her that he did not speed. Of course, as she had been checking on him through the rear view mirror she already knew this. Liz put her hand on her son’s shoulder to calm him down, and then thanked Will for allowing him to ride in the car and for bringing him home safely.

“Oh”, said Will, “We had a nice little chat”

Liz went cold – what had they chatted about? What had Will asked him about? David was a blabbermouth at times. However, she merely said that she hoped that David did not chatter on too much.

“On the contrary”, replied Will. “I learnt a lot”.

A lot about what? Oh no, did David discuss his father with Will? Her mind was racing at 100 miles an hour - really, it was none of his business and he had no right to pry and extract information from a child who did not know what he was saying.

During this speculation Liz had been walking up the stairs to the front door, where the children were already waiting to be let inside. She turned the key and moved back as they raced in ahead of her – she went to step inside and saw that Will was right behind her. Liz had been too busy with her thoughts and had forgotten to wish him good night and thank him for coming to dinner – she turned to do so now and realised that he was expecting to be invited in!

Just then David appeared at the door and grabbed Will by the hand and half dragged him inside. “Come on”, he said, “It’s in my room.” Will turned at looked at Liz, his mouth with an embarrassed sort of half grin.

“David, let go of Mr Darcy this instance!” Liz admonished her son. “What are you doing?”.

“He said that he wanted to see my Microton book”, replied David, “I was telling him about it”.

“Mr Darcy is just leaving”, Liz replied, but her words fell on deaf ears as David was already running down the hall to his bedroom to retrieve the book.

“I’m sorry Will”, Liz apologised, “he is not normally quite so boisterous. Must be hyped up because of the gift that you gave him. David”, she called, “Mr Darcy is just leaving so don’t worry about the book”.

It was too late – the boy had already returned with it in his hands. Great, Liz thought, he can’t find his socks when I ask him to and yet can lay his hands on the book straight away. David sat down on the lounge and motioned for Will to join him; Will, not knowing what to do, meekly followed and sat down and started leafing through the proffered book. Liz felt really helpless – here she was trying to get this man out of her house, her private sanctuary, and now he was sitting there like King Muck entertaining her son!

Liz watched for a while as David prattled on, telling Will in great detail all about the Microtons. Will bore it patiently, however he occasionally looked at Liz and gave her a weak sort of smile. Serve him right really, she thought; attempting to weasel his way into her house. She then noticed that David was starting to yawn and took some pity on Will.

“David, honey”, she said, “I think that it is time for you to go to bed”. When he started to protest that he was not tired she countered, “I can see you trying not to yawn. Besides which, Mr Darcy has to leave. Off you go – start to get yourself ready and I will be in in a minute”.

This should be have been Will’s cue to leave, however he did not attempt to get up from the lounge. “I just have to sort David out”, Liz attempted, but Will just nodded ok and continued sitting. She rushed through David’s bedtime routine, advising him that he had already had his bedtime story discussing the book with Will, and left him in his room despite his protests that he would not be able to sleep.

Will was still sitting on the lounge, and he was now leafing through some magazines that had been on the coffee table. Liz swore under her breath as she re-entered the room and saw what that he appeared to be settled for a while. She did not want to be rude, but other than being blunt she could see no option.

“Thanks for coming to dinner Will, and for David’s gift – as you can see, it really hit the nail on the head. And the trip in your car made it even more special for him”. She moved towards the front door and, feigning a yawn, commented that she was tired and had a busy weekend coming up.

“Oh, ok”, Will appeared to have taken the hint and had stood up, “would I be able to have a glass of water before I leave?”

Immediately overcome with guilt at not having offered her guest a drink, Liz replied that of course he could, but would he like a cup of tea instead? She hoped that Will would decline, however he said that would be lovely, and sat down again. Liz went into the kitchen to prepare the brew, and saw that Sherie was standing in there, staring daggers at Will. Liz was surprised to see her there, having assumed that the girl had gone straight to her room when they had arrived home. Her look was one of disgust – Liz tried to ignore this as she breezily said, loudly enough for Will to hear, that he would be staying for a cup of tea, and then he would be leaving.

Sherie, making no attempt to be subtle, asked why. Liz noticed that Will had turned his head slightly, the way that people do when they are listening but trying to appear nonchalant. Liz grabbed her daughter and put her arms around her, hoping that it looked like she was giving the girl a motherly hug, and whispered in her ear, “if you can’t be nice then please go into your room”. Sherie started to protest, but Liz just held her tighter and again addressed her. “I know that you are not happy about this, and I am not either. But I won’t have rudeness. Go into your room and I will come and talk to you as soon as Mr Darcy has left”. She then kissed her daughter on the forehead and hustled her down the hall to her bedroom. She heard the sound of the bedroom door slamming. Liz then returned to the kitchen, finished making the tea, and then proceeded to give a cup to Will.

Liz sat down opposite Will and gave him a weak smile. “Kids!!” she exhaled. Will actually looked a bit embarrassed and he was not sure how to respond. They sat in silence drinking their tea, the atmosphere so thick that you could cut it with a knife – Will realizing that maybe he had made a mistake by practically inviting himself in, and Liz wishing desperately that he would leave so that she could talk to her daughter. Finally the tea was finished and Will stood up – not knowing what to say, he remarked that the house seemed nice. Liz laughed at this and said that he had only seen one room, but she too stood up, hurried to the front door and flung it open with a cheery “Good night Will. Thanks again for coming to dinner, and for David’s present and for taking him for a ride in your car. Drive safely now”.

Will was taken aback by this haste, but he took the hint and his leave. However, just as he stepped out onto the porch (and Liz was about the close the door in his face) he stopped, turned to her, and said that he had a nice night and she had great kids. Before she could react, Will then quickly and softly kissed her on the lips before hurrying down the steps, getting into his car, and driving away. Liz closed the door slowly, her face felt like it was bright red. What had gone on then? What was he playing at.

Her heart was beating so fast, thudding into her ears. Liz breathed deeply in and out to calm herself down and then, when she felt in control again, walked down the hallway to her daughter’s room.

Can I Claim For My Heart

AnneAJanuary 07, 2018 01:34PM

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