Is Vic There?

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic


When Paul's mobile phone plays up he ends up dialling Katie instead of his friend. Who knows where this could lead?


After a bad day at work Paul Humphreys needed a drink. His head hurt with the stress that the day at the office had put him through. What he really needed now was a pint with a friend. They could set the world to rights and down a few pints in the pub. One of his oldest friends would be up for it. Keith Vickers, known as Vic to his friends, was renowned for being up for a beer even at short notice. He tapped at the screen on his new mobile phone. He tried to reach Vic on his landline at his flat across Salford.

‘Hello?’ came the female voice down the phone.

‘Hiya, love. Is Vic there?’

‘Who?’

‘Vic? Keith Vickers. Is he in?’

‘I think you’ve got the wrong number.’

‘It’s this new mobile phone. Sorry, love.’

Paul managed to get hold of Vic on his mobile phone. Thirty minutes later they were clinking glasses and leaning on the bar of the Nag’s Head. That first swig of beer really hit the spot. Paul sighed. He felt better already.

‘So,’ said Vic. ‘what’s up then?’

Paul explained about the issues at work while Vic listened and made sarcastic comments.

 

Early the following week Paul was feeling better about things. He called Vic on his landline.

‘Hi, is Vic there?’

‘Are you after Keith Vickers?’ the woman asked.

‘Yeah, is he there? Tell him it’s Paul.’

‘Hello, Paul.’ she said.

‘Hello yourself. Who’s this?’

‘This is Katie. And you’ve got the wrong number again.’

Paul swore.

‘This bloody phone.’ He said. ‘My mates keep saying I should go back to my old one.’

‘Maybe you should. Bye Paul.’

 

A few days later Paul was out with friends. What had started out as a couple of drinks after work had quickly escalated into a mammoth night out. Several pints later Paul decided to see if Vic fancied joining them. He found a quiet corner of the pub, pulled out his mobile phone and hit ‘call now’.

‘Hello you.’ she said.

‘Katie?’

‘Yep.’ She laughed.

‘I was after Vic.’

‘Yeah, I gathered that.’

‘How’s things with you anyway?’

‘I’m fine, thanks. What are you upto?’

‘I’m in town with a few of the lads. We were thinking of going for summat to eat.’

‘And you wondered if Vic fancied it?’

‘Aye, that’s it.’

‘If I see him I’ll ask him.’

‘You’re funny, you are.’

‘Bye love. Talk soon.’

Katie hung up.

The next evening as he flaked out in front of the television Paul’s mind went back to the wrong number he’d been dialling. He decided he had nothing to lose. He flicked and swiped on his mobile phone. He hit the ‘call now’ icon.

‘Hello?’

‘Hiya Katie. It’s Paul.’

‘Don’t tell me, you want your mate Vic to go for a curry?’

‘No, I just wanted a natter actually.’

‘With Vic?’

‘Erm, no, I just thought I’d give you a ring.’

‘Well, I am honoured.’

She chuckled down the phone.

Twenty minutes later, having chatted about everything from reality television and chart music, to the best biscuits to dunk and the weekend weather, Paul said he’d let her get on. There was something about the way that she told him to ‘Take Care’ that moved him. He was still grinning to himself the next morning as he dressed for work. He had to be a bit careful now though, he decided. He didn’t want to freak her out by calling all the time. If he played this just right who knows where this could lead. He would give it a couple of days and then give her a quick call.

The next evening as he was watching a Champions League game on television his mobile phone rang. ‘Vic Home’ flashed on the small screen.

‘Hey up, mate. How’s it going?’ asked Paul.

‘Hello, you.’ said Katie.

‘Hiya, love. You okay?’

‘I’m good, thanks. You?’

‘Yeah, sound, cheers.’

‘Just thought I’d give you a ring for a chinwag.’ she said.

‘Nice one.’

Paul tried to keep his voice as calm as he could as he punched the air with his free hand.

They chatted for thirty minutes about random topics, always making each other laugh.

 

Paul felt like he did the night United won the treble back in 1999. There was something special, magical about to happen, he just knew it. All he had to do now was call Katie and, without making it sound like a big deal at all, suggest meeting up for a coffee. He would play it so cool. He would ask like he’s asking his father if he wanted a brew, no biggie, wondered if you fancied, blah blah. Yeah, that would be fine.

That evening he perched on the edge of his sofa and stared at his mobile phone in his hand. His fingers trembled. Come on, he said aloud. No dramas, you’re just asking someone to meet for a coffee. A voice in his head reminded himself that he’d only phoned Katie by accident and that she would probably be scared off and weirded out by his suggestion. But, what if, he argued to himself, what if there was something there? What if she would be interested? All a bit weird though, the voice replied. I’ll do it later, he said aloud. He placed his mobile phone on the fireplace.

Every time he picked his mobile phone up to dial something stopped him. He would blow it, wouldn’t he? Asking someone he hardly knows out for a coffee? That’s stalker stuff, isn’t it? Eventually he decided to do it the following evening. He needed to think things through for twenty four hours. Then he’d be ready. Then he would do it. Having gone over it and got things straight in his head he would do it. He would be cool and chilled and be all ‘Hey Katie, I was just wondering’. That would work. That was the plan. Take the time to get his head round it then when he had it all planned he would make the call. He could even write down what he was going to say and read it like a speech. Tomorrow night. That’s when he’d do it.

And so, just after seven o’clock the next evening he clicked ‘call now’ on ‘Vic Home’.

‘Hello?’ asked a male voice.

‘Hi,’ said Paul. ‘Is Katie there?’

‘I’ve just moved into the flat today. The woman who was renting it moved out yesterday.’

 


Submitted: January 05, 2018

© Copyright 2021 CTPlatt. All rights reserved.

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hullabaloo22

Paul and Katie and what might have been! An excellent story, CT!

Sat, January 6th, 2018 8:25pm

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