Continues from here.
I really only had one close friend, the kind of close that I shared personal things with and I hadn’t seen her since before I met Jack. We’d shared a few text messages and I had told her I had been seeing someone but that was it so when I got a message from Katie asking how I was during my lunch break I decided I’d give her a call and see what she was up to.
“What’s going on?” Katie asked from the other end of the phone. “It’s been ages since we caught up.”
“You’re right, guess you’ve been too busy for anything other than text messages.” I replied deliberately avoiding my love life.
“You know it girl! Danny’s been pulling out all stops lately. But let’s not beat around the bush, you’ve been busy too. How’s the new man? Any dirt?”
I gave Katie a brief run down of Jack and how good he was but because we were both on our lunch break I knew there was not time to give the full story so I decided to invite her for a drink at Murphy’s Irish bar after work. She accepted. Before getting stuck back into work I rang Jack and told him we were going to have to go two nights without seeing each other. I didn’t word it quite that way and make us sound like love sick puppies but I could tell Jack was disappointed he wouldn’t see me, as was I.
“Where are you drinking? Perhaps I could come by after you’ve had a chat. I’d really like to meet your friends.” Jack said.
Jack really was sweet, a guy who wanted to meet his girl friend’s friends, they don’t come along often. A mutual friend of Katie’s and mine is the sort of girl who loves to show off her male friends but hates for her friends to get to know them, makes it harder for her to whinge about them if her friends know the guy too well. I wasn’t one of those, I wanted Katie and Jack to meet and get along with each other and I’m sure they would, but just like meeting my parents I hadn’t brought it up because I didn’t want to put too much pressure on Jack. Jack obviously wasn’t feeling any pressure.
“We’ll be at Murphy’s from about 5:30,” I replied.
“Maybe I could drop by after work, say around 6?”
He really was keen to meet Katie but I was also keen to catch up with her. “I haven’t caught up with her for a few weeks, would 6:30 be too late? Or perhaps I could call you?”
Jack agreed to letting me call him, he even suggested he could buy all three of us dinner when he got there. I told him there was no need but he insisted. I wondered if it was his way of ensuring an invite, but it didn’t worry me, I was more than happy for the way the evening was panning out and I’m sure Katie would be happy too.
When I turned up at Murphy’s I reminded myself that I didn’t need to be drinking too much, not only was I driving but after the previous night with Cindy I really didn’t need to be drinking too much. I spotted Katie looking as stunning as ever in her bright red dress and high heels, her office attire was a bit different to mine, sitting in a booth on the left hand side of the bar room. I walked over to her and at the same time the waitress approached the booth, I have no idea if she knew I was headed there or she just had good timing but when I sat down she was already taking Katie’s order. After taking my order the waitress disappeared and we got down to girl talk.
Katie started and told me how her husband had been working so much for the past few months that their personal life had really suffered but she wasn’t talking with regret or sad tones so I figured that the story would get better as it went on, I was right. When she finally pointed out to Danny how much their lives were getting effected by his work he stepped back and started to take notice.
“It hasn’t been easy, I can tell you that, but honestly Danny’s been a star with it all. At first I was pissed off that he was being so nice. I thought he was just doing it because I told him how vacant he’d been. I actually thought he was doing it because he felt guilty. Then my Mom gave me a slap in the face,” she wasn’t talking about a physical slap, “and told me to stop being so “FUCKING self obsessed”, her words not mine.”
I laughed at the comment, I knew Katie’s Mom very well, Katie and I had been friends for twenty years, and I’d barely heard the woman swear once in that time. “You’re kidding, she didn’t say that!” I replied.
“She did. I was shocked too, I guess it was that shock that made me really reassess how I was treating Danny. Honestly things aren’t perfect and they may not be for a while but when I stopped treating him like a problem and started treating him like a person things really did start improving.”
“You’re Mom might just be your savior,” I said as I finished my first drink.
“So tell me about this new man of yours.” she asked.
Having thought about how I’d explain Jack to her a few times during the afternoon I eventually decided I’d just start with the easiest part and go from there.
“His name is Jack Richards.”
“The guy that owns that motorbike place?”
“Yeah him. How do you know him?”
“I don’t know him, but I do know of him. Danny’s done some work for them.” she replied.
Danny worked for one of the largest electrical contractors in the area and part of his extra hours and efforts, the same ones that were effecting their home life, was because he wanted to branch out and start working for himself. It was hardly surprising that Jack and him had crossed paths.
After our second drink arrived I went on to tell Katie more about Jack, she listened intently and commented where appropriate. I didn’t embellish anything, I didn’t over sell Jack I simply told it like it was.
“When am I going to get to meet this Mr Wonderful?” Katie asked when I finished tell her my story.
“Well he kind of invited himself tonight, said he’d be waiting for my call and he’d come down here and by us both dinner. I told him you wouldn’t be interested!”
“You what?” Katie exclaimed. “You didn’t? What the hell did you do that for?”
“I knew you’d want to go home to Danny!” I said with a smile. It was at that point she realized I was joking.
“Dammit girl, you got me didn’t you?”
I smiled and nodded my head, “He’s waiting for my call. We can just do drinks if you need to get home to Danny though? Honestly Jack will just be happy to meet you.”
“Ring him, Danny’s working late. AGAIN. I’m free for a few hours yet.”
I pulled my cell phone out of the hand bag and dialed Jack’s number.