It only takes about five minutes to reach the restaurant. I park the car and we enter the restaurant. I place my hand on the small of her back, unable to stop myself from staking my claim.
I can already count three different guys that have their eyes on Enna, I’m having none of it. Recognising me immediately, the maître d jumps to attention and practically lunges at us.
“Mr King, your table is ready, if you would like to follow me.”
The flustered maître d’hôtel leads us to the back of the restaurant. The table is more secluded from the others, set further back and separated by huge potted ficuses. It is the usual one I take when I dine here.
I pull out my chair for Enna and take my seat next to her. I get a waft of her perfume and resist groaning. She smells so fucking sweet, like innocence and vanilla.
The maître d hands us each a menu and departs, leaving us alone. I glance over at Enna, to see she is frowning as she skims the wine menu.
“The fish is very good here. So, I think I’ll have white to go with it. What would you like to drink?” I ask her, she looks nervously back at the menu.
“Um, I don’t recognise any of these wines, but I usually drink Sauvignon,” she says hesitantly. “Which one would you recommend?”
I’m surprised for a moment, but then feel pleased that she’s deferring to me. “If you like Sauvignon blanc, then I’ll order you the Chablis, you’ll like it.”
Most of the menu is in French, and I watch her struggle to read through it. I’m ready to help when she suddenly looks up at me. “So, you recommend the fish here?”
I smile and lean towards her. “I’m going to have the salmon, it’s delicious, would you like me to order two?”
She considers it for a moment and then nods. “Okay then.” She puts down her menu. “Yes please.”
The waiter comes over and I order for both of us.
“So, tell me about you, your family,” I say, turning to face her.
I know so little about this woman and I’m already addicted. I want to know everything there is to know about her. We talk animatedly until the food comes, she tells me about her parents and her mad cousins. I tell her about my younger brother and my mother.
She seems to enjoy the Chablis and she compliments me on the recommendation. The salmon arrives and she moans as she tastes the succulent flakes. I want to tell her not to do that. She puts very dirty thoughts in my mind when she moans like that.
“Oh my God, this is incredible,” she gushes and shove another forkful into her mouth.
I love it when women enjoy their food, society always tells them not to. She glances around the sophisticated restaurant, cutlery clinks and mixes with light chatter above the classical music.
“I need to remind myself to eat properly and try not to inhale this delicious food in under three minutes,” she says jokingly, making me chuckle.
I watch her with an amused smile on my lips. “I’m glad you are enjoying it.”
“That salmon was honestly amazing.” She thanks the waiter as they clear away our plates.
“I’ve only heard about this place.” She hesitates a moment and leans towards me. “I’ll be honest, it’s not the sort of place I usually go, I don’t like spending a whole day’s wages on one meal, but I’ll admit that was incredible.”
“It’s one of my favourite restaurants,” I reply, and she looks at me thoughtfully, I’d love to know what she is thinking.
“I’m probably very different from the other girls you date, well, for starters, they’re probably women and not girls, but I bet they eat at fancy places like this, I usually get the 2 courses for £15 at the pizza restaurant,” she jokes nervously.
It only endears her to me more. I’m sick of gold-diggers, I’ve dated my fair share. I consider my answer, knowing I have to tread carefully in case I offend her.
“You are very different to anyone I’ve ever taken on a date before,” I start, and she looks shy. “But in the best way. I love it.”
I sit back in my chair and drink in her beauty.
She grins at me. “I’d rather have a McDonald’s than a Gucci,” she comments, and I smile at her humour.
“That’s...honestly very refreshing.”
We continue chatting, long after we’ve finished our dessert. Words come out of my mouth before I know it and I briefly wonder why I’m so eager for this lovely brunette to know me. The real me.
I drive her home, dropping her off at her flat. She invites me in for a drink and I can’t resist her. I want to spend more time with her. I haven’t had a connection with a woman in so long. I can’t remember the last time I actually dated a woman or went on a date and really enjoyed it.
Everything with her is so easy. We sit and talk on her balcony, enjoying a bottle of wine. It’s nice to have someone to really talk to, I can feel the loneliness lifting. I just need to get this mess with Sadie sorted. If she would just do what she said she would do, I wouldn’t be in such shit.
I want to have a clear slate to move forwards with Enna. I want to be able to give her everything she deserves. I want to talk to Enna about this, tell her what I’m going through, but I’m scared. I’m already punching above my league, here. She’s young, funny, intelligent, and beautiful. She has her own money.
She doesn’t need me for anything. She’s not after my money and she could get looks and humour in a man her own age. I’m terribly conscious that I’m ten years older than her and need to work to keep her. I don’t want her leaving me for someone younger, and I wouldn’t really blame her if she did.
So, no, I won’t tell her about my difficult situation yet. Hopefully, I can get this mess sorted quickly and quietly and we’ll be free to move forwards. I’m going to work hard for this because I have no intention of letting her go.
I wake with a smile on my face on Wednesday morning. Keon and I had a lovely date last night. When he dropped me home, he didn’t stay late because he had to get up even earlier for another meeting. I’m so glad my job doesn’t make me get up at the crack of dawn.
I realise that last night is the first time we’ve spent time together and not had sex. Wednesday is busy and time seems to fly by. I work all morning on my portfolio and spend the afternoon in my father’s garden.
On Thursday morning, I get a wax and a facial, treating myself. I don’t know what Keon has planned for tonight, he says it’s a surprise. I’m never sure if I like surprises or not.
After asking him what would be appropriate, I choose a mid-length dress and some heels. I’m just applying my lipstick when he knocks on my door. Once again, I’m breathless when I greet him. He’s wearing a black suit and he looks completely sinful. His eyes trail up and down my body, making me squirm under his intense gaze.
“You look beautiful, baby,” he compliments me and kisses my cheek.
“So, what’s the surprise?” I ask excitedly when we get into the lift.
“We’re going to the theatre, and then we have reservations at the Platform after.”
“Sounds perfect,” I reply and link my fingers with his.
We have an incredible evening. The theatre is wonderful and the view from the Platform bar is breath-taking. I’ve lived in London my whole life, I’ve seen it so many times from so many angles, but I’m still amazed each time I see it from a new one.
Keon is the perfect gentleman when he drops me home. He doesn’t come in, simply kisses me goodnight on my doorstep. Tomorrow, I get to sleep over at his house.
On Friday, Keon calls me in the morning. Sounding irritated, he explains that a client has requested a late meeting. He sends me the address of his house and asks me to meet him there at six.
I pack my things at my flat and get an Uber over to his place. It’s about half an hour away from my flat, on the other side of the city. I feel nervous when the driver pulls up outside the gates.
I punch in the code that Keon sent, and they slowly swing open. The gravel crunches under my feet as I approach the two storey house. There is no front garden, but the fences hint a large back one.
The gates close automatically, and I put in another code into the lockbox to retrieve his front door key. I unlock it and step inside. It’s strange to be in someone else’s house for the first time, without them there. I take off my shoes and wonder how much exploring I should do. I decide to stick to the first floor.
I leave my bag by the door and walk around each of the rooms. The design is modern and masculine, with dark colours and a ‘bachelor pad’ vibe. It’s tasteful, but I’d want more soft furnishings.
There are a lot of wooden floorboards and futuristic furniture. There’s neon up-lighting and floating sinks in the bathroom. It needs more rugs, cushions, and colour, in my opinion. I pour myself a glass of water and get out my laptop, prepared to keep myself busy until Keon comes home.