Last week I posted Chapter 1 of a book I’ve been writing titled ‘Kitchen Worktops, Coffee Shops, Relationship Breakups‘. If you’ve not read it then I’d love for you to put your feet up for five minutes and hopefully enjoy what has become a little bit of a writing obsession for me in the last three months.
I got some lovely comments on Twitter, some self published authors have emailed me encouraging me to continue, to even look at self publishing myself. Who knows, right now I undecided. For now here’s the next chapter of the book.
Kettle on and enjoy….
Laura became aware of the fact that she was surrounded by several empty cups of coffee and glanced at her watch.
It was 7:30pm! Mortified as she’d left Nathaniel with her friend for an ‘emergency hour’ and now three hours later had still not attempted to pick him up she made a dash for the door.
Hurrying to her car, she called Monica and breathlessly apologised down the phone. Her friend as always picked up that something was wrong and kept asking if everything was ok. Laura did her usually fabulous job of deflecting and said she’d be there in thirty minutes.
Dashing through the tiny roads around Notting Hill past the park where her and David had spent many Saturdays trying to get Nathaniel to ride his bike she could swear she could hear nagging voices in her head going ‘remember all those late nights he spent working, all those weekends with the boys, the secret phone calls in the garden.’
Surely, surely it hadn’t been going on that long, it couldn’t have. They’d had Nathaniel five years ago and Lucas had seemed so happy when she gave birth to a boy. He’d jumped around the delivery room “A boy, a boy, finally someone to take down the Hammers on a Saturday.” Things had been good, or so she thought. Admittedly she’d done much of the parenting single handedly and her friends, particularly Monica, had joked she might as well be a single parent the amount of support Lucas bought to their relationship.
Laura though never pushed things, and just considered that David was too tired after a long day at work and continued to manage the house and a new born demanding baby on her own. Then when David came home from work one day with a key, blindfolded Laura and walked her down to ‘Poco Vista’ was like a dream come true.
She kept telling herself that men of David’s position get tired, stressed and it’s understandable that things change and affection comes in lots of different forms…it doesn’t always have to be about sex.
David had known how much Laura wanted a coffee shop, particularly this one with it’s beautiful bay windows and quirky layout it was perfect for all the beautiful people to come and drink skinny lattes, smoothies and juices and with the kitchen on the back allowed Laura to finally realise her dream of making fresh, organic meals for busy parents just like her.
What she didn’t realise was that the coffee shop was a disguise. A well veiled attempt by David to distract her from his ever increasing late nights and working away from the office. A brilliant charade so that his affair could begin and blossom under her nose without her suspecting a single thing. Until that is it blew up in her face a few hours earlier.
Pulling up at Monica’s she realised, yet again that her face resembled a mascara mud bath. Thankfully like every mother on the planet there was a packet of emergency baby wipes in the glove box and she was able to make her face look less ‘ashen and dishevelled’, or at least enough she hoped to fool Monica.
Opening the door to be greeted by her friend of 8 years meant that her attempt at foolery lasted all of 30 seconds.
“Where’s the boys?” Laura mumbled as yet again she felt hot tears prick the sides of her eyes. Monica looked at her and in one motion swept her inside to the front room, her oasis of calm as she runs her own yoga studio from home, ran back out the door to yell “Leo take the boys to the park now and then stop at Pinocchio’s for pizza on the way back, don’t hurry in the slightest.”
Yells of delight, shouts of “where’s the football Nathaniel?” and then the front door slamming and peace meant that it was just the two of them.
Monica looked at Laura. She said nothing. She didn’t need to. Best friends have that amazing bond of just knowing when their friend is in pain and hurting. They sat in silence, Monica just holding Laura and letting her cry.
Huge racking sobs that filled her entire body. She’d not cried this much in years. The last time she cried like this was when Monica told her that she’d got cancer and both of them wept like children for the fear that they might lose each other and their friendship which was a bond so strong no one could break.
Finally, she paused for breath, that and the fact that her nose was streaming and she was aware that Monica’s shirt was taking the brunt of her tears.
“I’m sorry. I didn’t mean to do that. That wasn’t my intention at all.” Laura sat back on her heels, slightly lightheaded she felt woozy and overcome.
Monica looked at her “Ok lady spill the beans. What’s happened and what’s he done now?”
Monica’s distaste of Lucas was legendary. The two of them had a humongous row about three years ago when Nathaniel turned two because David had managed to forget his own son’s birthday (yes really he is that much of a prat he managed to do this) and had eventually waltzed into the party drunk and dishevelled blaming his friends for an evening of stag night pranks and debauchery.
Laura knew there was absolutely no point in bullshitting her friend. Monica would get to the truth one way or the other and it was best just to let it all out.
“I found him screwing Hayley on the kitchen work surface today at 11:24am after karate with Nathaniel. There he was Monica, in our kitchen, on the countertop going at it like there was no tomorrow and she was the only woman he’d ever wanted.”
Monica sat quietly, open mouthed, her face turning a darker shade of puce by the second.
“That son of a…..” she mumbled under her breath, “Did Nathaniel see anything?” I shook my head, thankful that I’d at least managed to continue the better parent and shield him from this fall out.
“Good” replied Monica, “Now sit there whilst I get us both a drink, we need to talk.”
Laura, breathed deeply. For the first time since she awoke that morning it was the first time she’d begun to feel a little calmer. Monica was a rock, her best friend, someone who could fix and make sense of anything.
If anyone could help her through this it would be Monica.