We’ve had plenty of Com, here’s a bit of Rom:
He never told her where they were going and she didn’t ask. She just sat back in the sumptuous leather seat and enjoyed the ride. He drove them quickly out of town, out into the open countryside then into a small market town. He pulled up outside an attractive pub with a conservatory restaurant.
‘I thought we’d eat in the restaurant rather than the bar. That okay?’ He jumped out of the car and quickly went round to Ella’s door, though she was already getting out by the time he got there. Still, it did show his manners.
The restaurant was obviously popular, it was full.
‘Oh, we should have booked,’ Ella said, hoping it didn’t sound like a rebuke.
‘Don’t worry.’ Hal touched Ella’s arm for reassurance – it made her tingle – then smiled over at the waitress who rushed to him.
They were escorted over to a nice little table for two in a secluded corner which Ella hadn’t noticed was vacant.
‘You did book,’ Ella laughed.
Hal raised his eyebrows then handed Ella the wine menu. She gave it a cursory glance then handed it back saying that she really wasn’t too keen to drink today. Hal nodded; he probably had a bigger hangover than Ella, anyway he was driving.
Ella looked through the menu, it all sounded delicious, but the truth was she wasn’t hungry. She glanced round at her fellow diners, noticing how large the portions were. Maybe she should have said no to lunch.
‘Have you chosen?’ Hal said, putting his menu down.
‘To be honest I’m not really that hungry. I had a late breakfast. Four slices of meese toast. But it does all look delicious.’
Hal screwed up his face. ‘Meese toast?’
‘Oh, sorry. Layer of Marmite followed by layer of cheese then grilled, though I haven’t got a grill so I have to toast the bread in the toaster then microwave it to melt the cheese. Not as good as the real thing, but …’ Ella stopped talking, realising that she was babbling.
Hal was smiling broadly at her. Smiling. Not laughing. ‘Marmite.’ He made a yuk face. ‘I’m starving, so I hope you don’t mind if I tuck in.’
‘No, absolutely not.’
‘Maybe you could have a starter as a main. Keep me company.’
‘Yes. Why not.’ Ella felt sure she could force something light down.
Hal ordered a jug of water and Ella had a lime and soda as they waited for their meal to arrive.
‘So,’ Hal said, leaning towards Ella, ‘do you eat this meese toast in that fetching frog outfit?’ His voice was low and husky. He gave her a secret little smile. He smelt so good. Oh my God, was he flirting?
Ella felt flustered. He was so hunky and good looking, so tall and well dressed, how could he possibley be interested in her. Anyway, what about leggy blonde? Ella gave him a little smile back, one which she hoped showed she was flattered – if he was flirting – but not interested in being some sort of backup bit on the side.
Their food arrived and just as the waitress put the plates down on the table Ella said, ‘Does your girlfriend mind you taking me to lunch?’ She felt the waitress’s eyes move from Ella to Hal and back again; she hovered just a little too long before Ella looked up and smiled at her.
‘What girlfriend?’ Hal said, without missing a beat.
‘Your girlfriend with the long legs.’
‘Oh you mean Phoebe. She’s not my girlfriend she’s my sister.’ He laughed and cut into his steak entrecote. Ella had chosen mushrooms in garlic butter, now she wondered if that had been wise choice.
This is a first draft, so is subject to change and please excuse any errors.
Missed excerpts from chapters 1-5? Check them out under recent posts on the right>>
I’ll be publishing an excerpt from chapter seven next week – follow my blog so you don’t miss it.
And, if you haven’t already tried them, check out my free short stories. (Completely different to this, and my two books). And if you like a little paranormal/mystery/romance and general British weirdness, try The Finder and The Illusionist.