The alarm went off at 7.30am Friday morning. Samantha went down to make herself a cup of tea and popped her head into the front room. James was fast asleep on the settee with the television still on. The word “BLUE” was bouncing across the screen.
Samantha made herself a drink, got two biscuits from the cupboard and crept back up the stairs to bed. She put the television on to watch the news in her bedroom and dozed off again.
Samantha woke in a panic and got dressed quickly. As she walked to the bathroom, she noticed James on his computer in the office. It was in the small bedroom in the front of their house.
While James was looking through the photos he had recently taken of a wedding; the alarm went off on his mobile phone and he knew it was 10 am, and he had to go to work.
James switched the computer off and pulled the door shut to his office. Then he went downstairs.
“WHAT TIME WILL YOU BE HOME TONIGHT?” Samantha shouted from the landing.
“Why, are you checking up on me again?” James replied.
“NO! I just wondered what time to get your dinner ready you miserable bastard!”
“I don’t know! I will let you know later!”
“Are you working?”
James looked up the stairs. “What the fuck do you think I’m doing?”
He heard a faint mumble and then it went quiet for a few seconds.
“Have you paid the Mortgage yet, because they were on the phone again yesterday?”
“I’ll sort it later!” James replied as he turned to go.
“You do know it’s due again!” Samantha said aloud.
James took a deep breath. “YES, I KNOW ITS DUE. HOW THE FUCK CAN ANYONE FORGET A £950 MONTHLY PAYMENT?” James yelled back.
“Oh, and leave me some money on the side, I have to go shopping again!”
“How much?” James said looking up the stairs again.
“Leave me £100. I am sick to death of shopping with a bleeding calculator!”
“Yes, I’m not standing in a queue at the check out again worrying!"
"Worrying about what?"
"If I will have to put stuff back on the shelf because I haven’t got enough money to pay for it again!”
James threw £100 on the stairs begrudgingly.
“Oh, and by the way, are we having a drink tonight to celebrate?”
“It’s 12 months today when we had the gas and electric cut off!
“Oh no, not that one again!? James mumbled as he frowned holding his head.
“I still can’t believe you let them break into our house with a locksmith while we were at work and fit two payment meters!”
“I AM GOING!” James shouted.
“And another thing before you head off to where ever it is you go! When are you going to do some work around this house it’s becoming a shit hole? It’s no good losing interest just because you don’t know if the bailiffs will remove the furniture and the mortgage company will repossess it!”
James grabbed his keys off the hook as the house phone rang.
I WILL GET THAT!” Sam screamed and ran down the stairs.
“Hello…!” “I’m Samantha Sullivan, I’m not married…!” “Who is this…?” “Yes, that right...!” “Oh, ye… who is our mutual friend…?” Samantha thought for a while. “I’m Sorry I don’t know anyone called Elizabeth Scott…!” “No, she must be one of my customer’s friends...!” “When’s your big day…?” “Ok, no problem, and you say you want James to do the photos…?” “How do you want your hair done...?” Samantha had a feeling this call wasn’t real and started to get fractious.
Samantha turned and glared at James. She was not happy! She realised something was wrong.
“Hold on, James is here; you can talk to him about your photos!”
Samantha threw the phone at James. “She wants some pictures done, she has heard about your long zoom apparently!” she said sarcastically.
James picked the phone up off the floor. “Hello…!”
“Yes… Yes… where…?” he asked.
Samantha walked into the kitchen and listened at the door.
“I told you not to call me here!” James whispered.
Samantha’s eyes filled with tears as she grabbed her coat from the cupboard. Then she walked passed him in the hall and out the house slamming the front door.
James put the phone down quickly, opened the front door and called out “Samantha… Sam… Sam come back we need to talk!” But she kept walking with her head down.
James closed the door and walked back into the hall and sat on the bottom step with his hands over his face. With a long sigh, he thought about things and how bad they were. Money was tight. James owed a considerable amount to different people and companies.
He looked up at a picture on the wall of them both when they were in love some years back. It was a picture of them side by side in high school.
They had been together for years, but things were not going well at all between them.
He went back upstairs to his office again and sat at his desk with his hands on his head. He looked at a pile of opened bills to his left and some unopened ones on his right.
James clicked on the computer. He looked at his bank account with £139 credit and looked back at the bills as his phone beeped.
When he looked at his messages, it was a new loan company offering him another loan. But he knew he couldn’t get one from anywhere.
He had been down the route of internet loans and scams on the computer several times before.
While he sat there in deep thought, James heard the front door open and slammed shut. He quickly ran down the stairs. Samantha stood at the front door still crying with a hanky to her nose.
“You told me it was all over!” she said pointing at the phone. Then she walked into the front room and sat on the sofa.
“What you on about?” James said as he followed.
“I heard you when I was in the kitchen.”
James looked away.
“Why does everything have to come down to me having an affair?”
“DERR! It’s not like you haven’t been found shagging other women in the past.
“It is all over! I have told her not to call me anymore. I’ve changed my phone number three times. That’s why she called here. No one will talk to her at work, and if her number comes up on my work phone, I don’t answer it. You said we could forget all that and move on!” James shouted.
“But we’re not moving on, are we? We have no money. They are about to have the house away from underneath us. Bills are coming in faster than ever. We have no life, no friends. You have more Bailiff friends than normal friends. We haven’t been on holiday for years together. You sleep on the sofa all the time looking at naked women on the television. You say you’re always at work, and to be honest I don’t see a lot of money coming in!” Sam yelled back at him.
James glanced at her as he walked around the room. “Oh, so it’s my fault! You piss about doing a couple of cuts a week and think that’s enough. I can’t keep bringing in the money we need; you will have to do a few more haircuts!”
“I wondered when it would be my fault. You had a great business until you slept with that fucking tramp. Her dad gave you so much work!”
“I wondered when it would get back to her!”
“The car will be repossessed as well soon; I bet you haven’t been paying for that either!”
James shook his head as it dropped.
“You have… haven’t you? You have been paying for your black BMW cabriolet dick extension yeah. I bet you have paid for your car and Fuck the mortgage!”
“The car is a business expense!” James explained.
“Well get rid of it. The business isn’t earning enough now you have shagged your best customer’s daughter.”
James didn’t stop to argue he grabbed his keys again and stormed out the house.
Samantha sat there sobbing into her hanky again. She cried for ages thinking about the good times they’d had together, but if she was honest with herself, she knew their school romance was rapidly coming to an end.
After a while, Sam pulled herself together, finished getting herself ready and walked to the shops.
She bought a few necessities and looked through the window of a dress shop, but she knew she couldn’t have anything new.
When she was walking back, her phone rang. She put the shopping bags on the floor by her side and searched her pockets. “Hello…?” “Hi, Jean Philippe…!” “No…!” “I can’t I’ve told you …!” Samantha looked around giving the proposal some consideration. “Fuck it.” She said under her breath. “Yes…” “Yes, I can come for a drink…!” “Pick me up from the train station…!” “The one where we first meet…!” “Say one hour…!” “See you then!”
With a slight smile on her face and a twinkle in her eye, she put her phone back in her pocket and glanced at her watch. She picked up the shopping and hurried home.
After she put all the shopping away, she got changed into something sexy. She soaked herself in the last bit of channel number 5 she had, walked back up to the shops and ordered a taxi.
As Samantha stood waiting she thought about James.
It wasn’t long before the taxi pulled up.
“To the train station please!” she shouted to the driver as she climbed into the back.
Eventually, the taxi arrived at the destination and pulled over. Samantha paid the driver and looked around the car-park. She moved over and stood by the entrance to the station. A black Range Rover pulled into the car-park and sat waiting. Then the lights flashed, and Samantha walked over and got in. “Where would you like to go Sammy?” Jean Philippe said with his French accent.
“Anywhere, just hurry up and drive!” Samantha shouted.
The Range Rover pulled away swiftly.
“What made you have a change of mind so suddenly when you were on the phone, Sammy?”
“Things change, don’t they?”
“C’est tellement vrai, Sammy,” he said with a smile.
Samantha looked at him inquisitively as they drove out into the country.
They laughed and chatted about this and that. Something Samantha hadn’t done for a long time. They found a little pub by a canal. Jean got some drinks, and they sat in the gardens with the sun shining on them, while they chatted some more and sipped their wine.
Samantha sat opposite Jean playing with her glass on the table at first. Then she started wrapping her hair around her index finger and pulling it over the side of her face while she talked incessantly about nothing. Samantha was nervous and uneasy with the situation. She kept looking around in case she recognised anyone. Her body language was scared and not at all relaxed. She kept moving, crossing her legs then uncrossing them. Samantha glanced around again expecting to see someone she knew. She was very uncomfortable. She jumped when a small cat walked by her feet under the table. Samantha pulled her hair over get face again as a barge went past slowly. She was quite happy to sit with her elbows on the table and her hands on the side of her face.
“Are you OK Sammy?” Jean asked as he placed his wine glass down carefully.
“No, not really!” She replied.
“Would you like to walk with me for a while?”
Samantha finished her drink quickly and stood up. Jean held out his hand, and Samantha grabbed it. They strolled along the towpath. Jean picked a red rose from a garden and gave it to Samantha. She held it to her nose smiling as they walked to a lock just passed a small bridge. They kissed passionately leaning against the wall, and Jean held her tight in his arms.
They kissed more and more until he lifted her dress and felt the top of her leg.
Samantha wasn’t pleased, and she pulled back. “No Jean-Philippe, it’s too soon!” she said pushing him away.
“I must apologise!” He said. “I have waited so long for this moment. I have loved you for a very long time, as you know?”
Samantha frowned at him and walked away.
He grabbed her arm. “What is it, Sammy? Talk with me!”
She stopped and turned. “I’m sorry but things aren’t good at home at the moment, and I don’t want to make them worse!”
“OK, I’m sorry if I was misreading the signs. You are a married woman, this I know! You ask me to pick you up at a secret location. You get dressed in a lovely dress for me. You let me take you out for a drink in the middle of nowhere, and we walk hand in hand for a while. You even let me kiss you passionately. Then you say no to a… how do you English say? A little hanky-panky!”
“I’m sorry!” Samantha said. “Another time maybe!”
They slowly walked back to the car saying nothing.
They drove back, and Jean dropped Samantha off close to her home. He said he would call again as she got out the car with tears rolling down her cheeks.
Samantha walked home clutching the rose that he’d given her.
Her world was upside down and she didn’t know which way to turn.
Samantha sat in the kitchen for a while in a daze staring at the rose. Then she decided to send Jean-Philippe a text;
“I’m sorry it’s not a good time at the moment. Another time when things are better!” XX
She added two big kisses at the end and sent it.
She placed her phone on the side and half-heartedly tried to cook a dinner, but she knew James wouldn’t be home on time and would probably be drunk and it would end up in the bin as usual.
While she was standing by the sink peeling potatoes in a trance her phone beeped. She read the message from Jean-Philippe;
“It’s OK Sammy, I will wait for you! I adore you as you know. If I can help with anything, all you have to do is ask. JP XX”
Just as she started to delete the message with a tear in her eye, there was a loud knock on the front door.
Samantha put the phone on the side again and opened the door. Two men stood in front of her. They held their ID up “Hello, I’m DCI Clews, and this is P.C Ashton. We are looking for Mr Becket?”
“Nothing we just need to talk to him! Is he in?”
“No he’s at work, can I help?”
“No Mrs Becket…!” they said looking at her.
“Sorry, I’m Samantha Sullivan were not married!”
Samantha was in a daydream worrying about her life that was falling apart. She wasn’t listening to them talking until they held a card up and said: “We will call back tomorrow?”
PC Ashton looked at her “Are you, OK Miss?”
Samantha nodded, closed the door and went back into the kitchen and sat down again. After a while, she realised moping wasn’t going to help. Samantha picked herself up, had a shower to wash off her perfume and got the dinner ready. She laid the table and waited.
Samantha picked at her dinner, and James finally came home just after 7. He was extremely quiet and seemed to be lost in thought with a mobile phone in his hand that Sam didn’t recognise.
“The police have been here looking for today.” She said scraping the food off her plate into the bin as he sat at the table pushing the rose to one side.
There was no reply.
“Did you hear me?”
“Yes I heard you, some kids tried to break into the shop again!”
“Are you OK?” she asked.
There was no answer
“What’s that?” she asked as she placed his dinner on the table in front of him and picked up the rose.
“This? Oh, it's nothing.”
“Where did you get it?” Sam asked trying to make conversation.
“It was on the floor, by my car!”
James played with his dinner still in a trance.
Samantha gave up trying to talk to him and went to bed to watch the Television. She left him with a bottle of vodka and a small glass on the table.
Did you enjoy my ongoing story so far? Please let me know what you think by leaving a review! Thanks, Vaughan WilliamsWrite a Review