Annie is concerned.
Forty minutes later there was a call from Annie. It was obvious that Peter had told her enough to cause her to be concerned, but Annie was trying not to sound anxious for her.
She asked Sheila a lot of personal questions about what had happened to her. Peter had told her too much, or she had pumped him, as she could be counted on to do.
Sheila had protested, of course, that she was alright, and that it was just a little sprain and she’d be back to normal in a couple of days.
Annie had not left it there, but had wanted to know how it had happened, and how had she met Peter? She was constantly digging for answers, but in a gentle way. She needed to know the details without entirely aggravating her young friend with her motherly cautions.
Sheila told her as little as she could get away with. How Peter had carried her down to the road on his back, leaving her by the river bank, going to their home to get her bike, and getting her back home.
She left out all of the difficult personal stuff that no one else should hear... about the state of her clothing... or him having seen to her in her bath... or that they were in love.
Annie was obviously worried for her, warning her in an indirect way, wondering about her ability to deal with an intent young man, and her all alone and vulnerable.
She'd actually seen what an 'intent' young man, was attentive too, and intent upon... her body... her unclothed body... and it bothered her a little, but not as much as it should, from what Annie was suggesting without actually putting it into words.
“What has that got to do with anything, Annie? I can’t do the calves or the hens, hobbling around the way I am; not for a day or two anyway.”
She had not want to understood what Annie was talking about. She was speaking as though Peter was likely to turn into a frog or a vampire during the night, or something much worse. She was prepared to take that risk.
“Your mother would have nightmares if she heard about this.”
Sheila knew that, which was why her mother wouldn’t hear about this from her, and her mother would have no reason to call Annie.
Annie had been on the phone for ten minutes, asking questions.
Annie could read between the lines. Peter had been nicely railroaded, given no choice but to offer his help to a damsel in distress, was the way Annie had heard it. This wasn’t the Sheila that Annie knew, but it was the Peter she'd come to know.
“I’ll come and check on you tonight if you like…?”
And have her see how lightly dressed she was, how helpless; and guess at what Peter had needed to do for her already? Not only that, but what he might try to do with such temptation thrown in his face with them alone together, and her ready to do the dance of the two, not the seven veils for him once her robe and panties were gone, and then suffer at his hands in a more personal jig after that.
She responded quickly before Annie talked herself into coming over.
“There’s no need, Annie. Tomorrow morning will be okay.”
“If you are sure?” Sheila was sure.
“I’ll pick up the eggs in the morning anyway, so I’ll see you then. Remember what I told you. You don’t know him that well.”
Sheila did not argue. What did she need to know other than that he loved her and she loved him?
“I put up a dinner for you both, with more for him, even though he’s already had dinner here. By the time he gets back to you he’ll have worked up another appetite and be ready for more. He has the appetite of youth.”
Unfortunately, and in too many awkward directions where a young, and attractive, and helpless woman, was concerned.
She hoped that was not a prophetic utterance. Annie should have dissuaded him and sent someone else over to help with the calves and hens, but neither of them wanted to be stopped, and that first rush of young love was rarely slow or gentle, but was a raging furnace of uncontrolled and uncontrollable raw emotions.
Sheila saw Peter coming back on that bike. He had a basket over the handlebars.
“I’ve got to go, Annie. Peter’s coming back.”
Already? He must have set a blistering pace. He'd be the same in everything he did, and even with Sheila if she gave him even an inch of encouragement to bring other of his sobering inches into play within her little grotto. He'd been getting aroused just telling Annie about it all, anticipating getting back to Sheila. She could read his mind.
Sheila sounded unusually pleased to see him. Trouble!
They both hung up; both, left with their thoughts about what had been said and not said, to mull over.
Annie stood there not sure what to think after hanging up the phone.
From what Annie had heard enough times from Sheila’s tearful and despairing mother, Sheila had been too deep into her studies at university and was not taking the time or the opportunity to socialise, as all young folk needed to do. Maybe this bolt-out-of-the-blue was where her life began to change for the better, or for much worse; especially for worse, if she came out of her shell too fast, or he tried to get into it.
If Sheila didn’t meet her future husband at university, she might put it off, and keep putting it off until it was too late, becoming one of these uptight professional women letting life pass them by.
It sounded as though that problem was now on its way to being solved. It was already happening, and Annie was damned if she would step in between them to interfere if it was not needed, even if Sheila got well and truly fucked. She was old enough to know what she wanted. But she had to know that Sheila was okay. And Peter too. The first few days were the most uncertain.
The next few days would give them chance to learn more about each other, but not too much, too quickly, as Sheila was prepared to do, from what Annie could hear in the studied calmness in her voice. Sheila had been striving too hard not to sound excited, but Peter had been the same way, hiding too much, bottling up his excitement and impatience to get back to her, sitting there eating, and with a hard-on under the table in his excitement.
Annie would see enough when she went over in the morning to pick up the eggs, and she would not leave until she knew more, and was sure that nothing had gone wrong. Or, at least had not gone too wrong, if there was such a possibility at her age.
They would either be deeper in love by then and banging each other, or….
She preferred not to think of that. Sheila had suffered enough disappointment already in her life with tragic loss of her father as well as grandparents, and all in the same year.
As soon as Sheila hung up from that conversation with Annie, her mother called; earlier than usual.
There was no point in telling her mother anything about what had happened to her. She would only worry and break short her conference; somewhere in the Middle-East, and race back home to rescue her daughter who didn't want to be rescued. It was eleven or twelve at night where her mother was.
Sheila would say nothing about Peter or what had happened to her today.
She hoped Peter didn’t make a lot of noise when he came back into the house, but her mother was not on the phone long; just long enough to listen to Sheila’s voice and to know that she was okay, before she apologized and hung up.
“Yes, Mom, nice to hear from you too.” But her mother had already gone.
There was no need to tell Peter anything about that call from Annie, or about the one from her mother. She would call Annie later anyway, before either of them retired, to stop her worrying.
She still had to think about and understand what Annie had been trying to tell her about Peter and men in general, but she didn’t want to be bothered by that. It would only get in the way of what had to happen before her mother got back. She'd seen it in Peter's eyes and felt it in her own responses to him. Felt it in his responses to her too. Had physically felt it.
But what could she have said to Annie? What did she know about men, or even about Peter, when it boiled down to it? She couldn’t be sure of anything for herself., but she knew she was in love, and that he was in love with her, and that they would soon make love. Nothing else mattered. Except that, in itself was also frightening to consider.
They would have five days and nights alone together to find out about each other, but she could not be sure how that would go, having no experience to lean back upon.
It had already been a disturbing first meeting in so many ways, and an even more disturbing follow-on from that, when he had lifted her out of the bath and learned so much about her body and her problem. But she had learned more about him too.