Chapter 17 Behind You!

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The Man with No Name seemed happy to see Libby again.

“Libby! Hi! You sneaked off quite early. Fun night, huh?”

Libby cringed. He wasn’t shy, she’d give him that, and try as hard as she might she still couldn’t remember his name.

“Um….hi yourself….umm.” Suddenly she had a brainwave. “Do you know Meegs?”

He reached out and shook Meeg’s hand. “Howareya, Meegs. Doing all right?”

Damn, he didn’t say his name. Kids today. No manners!

He brandished the bouquet. “ I’ve had to carry these all the way down from Fernhill. I left me car in town last night and had to walk in to pick it up. I must look like a right tool. They’re an apology present for a friend. She’s been away on holiday and I was looking after her cat. The stupid thing’s run away and I figure if I give her a bunch of flowers before I give her the news, she won’t have any hands free to smack me round the head with. Anyway, I was walking past, saw you sitting here and just thought I’d say hi.”

“Cool, “ said Libby with more enthusiasm than she felt.

“Good night last night, wasn’t it!” he continued, then looked at his watch.” Shit, I’d better run or I won’t get to the airport on time. I’ve got your number, Libby. I’ll give you a call. Nice to meet you, Meegs.

He left a very unamused Libby behind him.

“Oh God, I must have given him my number. What was I thinking! “

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Returning home after brunch, Libby tried to paint but once again couldn’t concentrate. Her thoughts kept returning to the events of the night before…the bits she could remember of it anyway. Given that the bits she could remember were so excruciatingly embarrassing, she was grateful for the memory wipe provided courtesy of the alcohol.

After a couple of hours of uninspired dabbing at the canvas, she gave up and decided to go to the supermarket. Unlike most people, she found the weekly grocery shop a soothing experience. A bit of mindless ambling around the aisles of New World was exactly what she needed.

An hour later, her trolley nearly full and her sense of wellbeing nearly restored, she was standing in front of the loo roll display when her happy time was rudely interrupted.

“We meet again. This is starting to feel like fate.”

Libby’s stomach lurched a little. There was no mistaking that Irish accent. It was the Man with No Name again. What were the odds!

“Are you stalking me or something?” Libby said, turning to face him. His dark, curly hair was tousled and his eyes were twinkling.

” Damn, he’s cute,” she thought, then scolded herself for noticing.

“Could you blame me if I was?” he said. “It’s not often I meet a pole-dancing painter. It’s a very attractive mix…”

Oh God, was he flirting with her? Suddenly she was very aware that she hadn’t brushed her hair and the shirt she was wearing could do with a wash. She hated herself for caring and silently repeated Meeg’s mantra about not getting involved.

“Look, I really must be going,” she said crisply. “Got to finish the shopping…” She turned her trolley round and headed off.

“Nice seeing you again, Libby,” she heard him say. “I definitely will be calling you!”

Libby grimaced. That was one call she’d be letting go straight to Call Minder.

***********************************

True to her word, when her phone did go off later that night, she let it ring.

“Sod’s law,” she thought. “The ones you want to ring never do while the ones you’re desperate to avoid won’t leave you alone!”

A few minutes later her phone beeped a second time. He’d left a message.

She did her best to ignore it for the next hour but eventually her curiosity got the better of her. She picked up the phone and dialled 707.

“You have one new message,” Call Minder reeled through all the options. Then suddenly, there he was.

Hi Libby, it’s your stalker here. Hope you’re good and the pole-dancing injuries aren’t giving you too much trouble. Was wondering if you’d like to meet for a drink on Wednesday night? I’m moving into a new flat this week so I’m a bit busy up until then. It’s a really cool place in Remarkables Lane, really great views, good people, I’m stoked. Much better than the dive I’ve been living in. Anyway I’m rambling now, give me a call back. See ya.”

She listened to the message again. There it was as clear as a bell. Remarkables Lane. REMARKABLES LANE!
How the hell was she going to be able to avoid him if he was moving in across the bloody road!

And she still didn’t know his name…

All characters in Remarkables Lane are fictitious and any resemblance to any person alive or dead is purely coincidental…. No seriously, you’re really not that interesting