It had appeared that the goings on in Venice, had been forgotten for the time being at least. Mitch kept his distance, he was busy with Cassy’s career and Wendy Bligh. Cassandra was overly nice and attentive toward Jimmy. Jimmy did ask Boris to have a look for the mystery woman. Boris was all too pleased to help Jimmy. He knew fine well that it was Jeanette. So he kept Jimmy off the scent which wasn’t too difficult. It did however tug at his heart strings. Knowing that Jimmy had true happiness just a hands width away. His survival depended on Jimmy and Cassandra. He wasn’t ready to be retired as it were. Boris hoped that in time the pair would fall for each other properly. After all generations of couples lived this way. Every day before heading off into the city, Cassy packed Jimmy a lunch box. He hated cheese and tomato sandwiches, but didn’t have the heart to tell her. She kissed him at the door and rung him at work to say she loved him. That was about as far as the wifey things went. The closer the birth, Cassy was more clingy and cuddly with Jimmy. Almost to the point she was smothering him. Mitch had kept his distance, as he was involved with Wendy Bligh. Much to Jeanette’s annoyance this was not part of the plan.
It was January and the unexpected volume of snows, had brought the country to a standstill. Hyde park was empty save hardcore joggers. Running off the Christmas indulgences. Gangs of children in pitched snowball battles. The cold drove them off after a short while. Even the Household Cavalry had given their mounts time off, in their heated stables. The sky was heavy with the threat of yet more snow. A lone figure bent down to light the candle that was set on a wooden platform. The candle was surrounded by a paper box. It was heavily decorated in golds, blues, greens and mystical figures. He had found it in the Chinese gallery on the Seven Sisters road. Jimmy pushed the platform onto the Serpentine and stood watching it float away. The candle danced and lit the surrounding box. In the dull light it sparkled. Jimmy heaved a deep sigh, the pain he still felt was there it still hurt him. He allowed a tear to fall and wiped it away with a gloved hand. He thought about Jeanette, sadness regret and then an anger. Then his thoughts wandered to Venice, there was something so familiar about that woman. If he didn’t know better he was sure it was her. It left him a little confused in the feelings department.
“What’s he doing mummy?” Jordan pointed to Jimmy and the floating box.”Is he doing what we are?” Jeanette smiled at her son and stooped down to adjust his scarf. She found herself doing what her mother and countless of others did. When they found a dirty face. Dabbed a tissue with her spit and cleaned the mark. The response was exactly like millions of others. Jordan shrugged her hand away making faces at her. “Clever lad. Yes son he is remembering someone too.” Jordan stared at Jimmy for a while. He was getting cold and couldn’t wait to see Lemmy and Yuri. They had a surprise for him as he had missed them over the Christmas period. He and Jeanette had spent the time in Anglesey with her family. She had hired a large farmhouse, filled it full of food presents and family. She needed the time to think things through. Venice had left its mark on her and it was a little more than a happy memory. She knew that Jordan would question the life out of her. She hoped that it was a false alarm. She decided to visit the doctor after the seasonal break.
“Why didn’t he use petals like we do and sprinkle them on the water mum?” Jeanette shrugged.
“Some people light candles, everyone is different Jordan... but that was nice wasn’t it... I prefer our way... your father would have loved it” Jordan nodded. Jeanette was beside herself it just popped out. She hadn’t meant to keep the lie going. She thought that she was protecting Jordan. “Do you think Dad knows we are here?....Mum what was he like?” The little boy’s cheeks were glowing red with the cold. Jeanette knew he would keep asking, until she had satisfied his curiosity. He must have that from Jimmy’s side.
Jordan despite being small was a real nosey parker. “A little like him Jord, but not as thin and more handsome.” She was pleased and a little taken aback, that Jimmy was remembering their loss. “Should we go and say hello....mum do you think he needs a cuddle?” Jeanette was lost in her thoughts. Here he was the man married to one of the most desirable women on the planet. Rich beyond his wildest dreams, although he didn’t know it. Remembering their loss, maybe here was hope after all. She had felt it in Venice she was sure. Subconsciously she rubbed her stomach. It was the second of January. Jeanette wiped away a tear as she watched Jimmy walk away. So near yet so far away.
Jimmy trudged off in the opposite direction. To the car that was waiting for him. He had a new driver Alan, Lord Rhys-Penfound had recommended him. Jimmy found him a little gruff but very efficient. He and Lemmy were always late due to their dawdlings. However Alan was very precise, Jimmy was always on time when he drove and chaperoned him.“Everythang alreet sar?” Jimmy hated the Glaswegian accent. It reminded him of too much heartache. It reminded him of his loss and Jeanette. He smiled at the chauffeur who was immaculately dressed in a pinstripe suit complete with cap. How the heck had he come to this he mused. “Yes Alan thanks erm.”
“Dry ran af the horsespital sar, ready fer the event.” Jimmy smiled nervously. He knew that Cassy would be having kittens. She had baby brain along with the paranoid emotions too. She was almost due and the size of a house. It had taken a huge amount of effort for him to put her off coming with him today.
Her parting words were “See even you my husband who is supposed to love me in sickness and health hates me, look I’m so fat.” Alan’s word snapped him back to reality. “Don’t forget we have to pick up a Chinese too.” Cassy had amazing cravings throughout the pregnancy. Most were fairly bizarre all were expensive. Lately she craved Chinese takeaway. She never ate it all just wanted to smell it and taste it. Duck, noodles, egg foo yung and a rice dish. It was a good job Alan liked the food and had a good appetite.