Art Trip

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Romance  |  No Houses

Chapter 14 (v.1) - Chapter 14

Submitted: January 28, 2018

Reads: 229

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Submitted: January 28, 2018

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With a week to go before their flight, Richard and Maggie took the day off, being this was their last Saturday before Florence. Richard had asked artists Robyn and Amber to look after the shop in exchange for space in the gallery for their forthcoming exhibition.

Maggie was being taken up West by Janet for a ‘shop to drop’ day, while Richard was collecting some euro’s and taking the opportunity to go and choose a ring. When Maggie told him on her return from lunch, that she and Janet were going out on Saturday, he ditched the idea of Aunt Rose’s ring in favour of buying Maggie her own.

Richard was washing their breakfast dishes my hand, when Maggie’s phone rang. It was Janet, “Your carriage awaits.”

Maggie called out to Richard, “Janet’s here I’m going now!”
He came out of the kitchen, arms opened covered in soap suds wanting to give her a hug. Maggie pulled back, “Keep away I don’t want to be all soapy!” So, instead Richard settled with giving her a kiss on the forehead. “You have a lovely time.”
Maggie returned the sentiment with a kiss on his cheek. “Don’t wait up!” she jokingly said then she was gone.

The black cab was waiting outside the flat for her, Janet leaned over and opened the door. With Maggie inside, the cab pulled away. “Where to first ladies” said the cabby.
“Liberty and Co., Regent Street, full-steam ahead.” said Janet, as she appointed the role of ships master.
“Aye, aye Captain,” said the cabby playing along with the nautical theme.

Maggie looked at the cabby in the rear-view mirror, “I know you don’t I”
He then looked to see who she was, “That’s right Miss, I pick Mr Maple up on Wednesday’s to take him to the auction. Maggie, isn’t it?”
“That’s right, and your name…”
“George, Miss. George Butler at your service.” George was a typical EastEnder, full of charm, character and told it like it is.
“He’s got a thing about you, that Mr Maple.”
Maggie felt her cheeks flush and said nothing.
“He’s alright though, good bloke for a toff. Tips well.”
“Richards no toff,” said Maggie.
“Speaks a bit plummy though, doesn’t here.”
“Here’s well spoken if that’s what you mean.”

The conversation dried for a few seconds before George asked, “What’s this about you late for work cos, you shit the bed?”
Maggie rolled her eyes, looked briefly towards Janet, who was laughing, then back over the seat at George. “How many more people as he told that story too?” George gave a proper hearty laugh. So, Maggie had to spend the next ten minutes explaining about the chocolate buttons.

After telling her story, she rested back in the seat. George sensing the two women wanted to talk in private, he left them in peace.

The cab drove pass Maggie’s flat and she could see there was a builder’s lorry outside. She wondered how Richard’s solicitor, Nick Skerrett was getting on with the landlord. She had to admit she received no more emails or phone calls. Then the cab turned left on to Fulham High Road and Maggie couldn’t help but look at No.32.

Janet saw Maggie look backwards towards the house as the cab drove pass, was she looking for his car she thought. “He’s not there anymore.” said Janet.
Maggie turned to face her, surprised by that news.
“He’s been gone just over a year now.”
“Where did they go too? Maggie asked
“They?” replied Janet
“Yes, Martin and Debbie”
“Oh, no she left him just before he moved away.”
Maggie waved her phone in front of her friend’s face, “Why didn’t you tell me. These work you know.”
“Why are you still concerned about Martin after all these years? You’ve got Richard now a man that loves you very much. Don’t let Martin poison those tender shoots that are growing between you two.”
“Oh Richard knows who Martin was, he found some of his stuff at my flat.” Maggie reassured Janet.
“Yes was, past tense and that is where Martin stays in the past.”

Janet was wondering if Maggie had truly moved on from her painful break-up. “You’ve got to deal with this Mags before Richard catches you one day looking over your shoulder. He’ll get suspicious and think you don’t love him like you loved Martin. It will drive him away from you and deeper once more into his shell. He’ll never trust another woman and you’ll end up broken and living in regret for the rest of your life. If that happens then men like Martin have won, because they are still in control of you.”

Maggie sat and listen, knowing Janet was making prefect sense. “Your right, Martin is dead in my life. Why should I care what he is up too? He never really cared about me and he proberly never really cared about the other women he’s hurt. He’s a parasite taking what he can and then throwing away the empty shell when he’s finished.”

Janet, smiled and patted Maggie’s hand. “Focus all your emotion on Richard, like he is now focusing on you. Go to Florence, share the experience. Build up memories, eat great food, get drunk and fool around. Then you’re come back a stronger couple ready to kick the Martin’s of this world up the arse!”


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