Monthly Archives: January 2016

Connection (epilogue)

Kate propped herself up one elbow and watched Jack slowly ease the bathroom door shut behind himself. “It’s alright, I’m awake.” Even through the half light of the early dawn she could see him smile. “You weren’t planning on making a quiet exit on me were you ?”

“God, no” replied Jack. “For a start I can’t remember where I left my trousers…”

“I think we were over there when…” Kate stopped and gestured vaguely at the hotel room door. She caught his gaze and then looked away, grinning shyly at the memory. He came back and lay down on top of the bed next to her, matching her head-on-elbow pose.

“Course I wasn’t planning on making a quiet exit.” He leaned in and kissed her lightly, lips brushing hers. As he was about to move away she whispered “good” and kissed him back, more forcefully, before playfully catching his bottom lip between her teeth. She stopped as she tasted the cool mint of fresh toothpaste on his breath, suddenly regretting last night’s coffee. The one they’d had afterwards as they’d joked about neither of them smoking. Stale coffee against that clean tang. She tasted bitter and that wasn’t how she wanted him to think of her; she’d surprised herself in the last few weeks that it wasn’t how she felt.

“You alright ?” asked Jack.

“Yeah, I’m fine” she said, running a finger across his chest. “Just thinking.”

“Always thinking. Thought I’d cured you of that ?”

“Oh, believe me I dissolve to a head spinning mess every time you walk into the room” sighed Kate batting her eyelids in exaggeration.

“Come on, not even a little weak at the knees ?”

“Maybe a slight tremble” acknowledged Kate with a smile. “That first time we kissed, maybe then. You remember that ?”

“A taxi rank in Huntingdon in the rain. Who’d forget that ? You took that cab from me as well…”

“Such a gentleman. Yeah, that kiss. I don’t know Jack, I don’t normally jump off trains with strange men….

“Less of the strange…”

“…with strange men and end up talking into the night before kissing them goodbye long after the last train home’s left.”

Jack leant forwards and pulled at a loose strand of her hair, easing it back behind her ear. “It was quite an unusual day, I’ll give you that. An unusual and wonderful day.”

“Thank you” she mouthed.

“So you had a slight tremble ?”

Kate groaned. “Stop fishing Jack. It was a nice kiss.” She caught the look of mock sadness on his face. “A fantastic kiss. In the Renaissance I’m sure they would have captured it in perpetuity in some grand sculpture or delicate painting.”

“Psyche revived by Cupid’s kiss” said Jack. Kate sat up in bed, laughing.

“How do you know that ?”

“I’ve been secretly researching stuff – art – to try and impress you.”

“I am impressed. I love that piece. I used to allow extra time for it on all of my tours even though most of the visitors were just shuffling their feet wanting to see the Mona Lisa or Venus De Milo”

“The one without the arms ?”

“Goodness you really have been researching.”

“I kinda knew that one anyway” said Jack sheepishly.

“I kinda hoped that you would” said Kate. “But Psyche and Cupid. I’m…” she paused. “I’m touched Jack, really, that you’d find out about that stuff.”

“Seemed important to you…”

Kate looked at him intently. “You know that story, right ? Cupid waking Psyche from her eternal sleep after she’s been tortured by Worry and Sadness and forced to endure a series of terrible trials.”

“Well that train was delayed for a long time…”

Kate rolled her eyes. “So you’ve cast yourself as Cupid – the god of desire ?”

“Seemed a decent likeness,” smirked Jack.

“I think Canova might have needed a little more stone dear,” said Kate reaching over and patting his stomach gently. “If I’d known you were going to be this cocky once we slept together I’d have kept you waiting a bit longer.”

“How long do you think it might be until next time ?”

“I don’t know,” said Kate arching an eyebrow. “Kiss me again and let’s see.”

 

……
This is the twenty first (half way !) story in my series of 42 shorts that I’m writing to raise money and awareness for Mind, the mental health charity. My fundraising page is here and all donations, however small, are appreciated: https://www.justgiving.com/42shorts/
This, as its title suggests, is a brief epilogue to a story I had published as part of an anthology of short stories called Delayed Reaction. The anthology combines stories from a group of talented writers whom I’m privileged to call friends. It’s available here: http://www.delayedreaction.org.uk – or contact me direct if you’d like to read more.
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