CopyCat Cafe: Tom Cooks Dinner

Continues from here.

As you can probably guess I accepted Tom’s dinner invite. Seriously I wasn’t brave enough to say no because I had to work in the confines of a kitchen with Sonya every day! No that’s not entirely right, I’m sure Sonya would have had plenty to say if I knocked back the date, even with a good excuse, but she doesn’t run my love life as much as she thinks she does. Besides I really did like Tom.

The annoying thing about dating Tom was the voice of my dear departed mother in my head telling me that I was only dating Tom to get back at Simon. My mother was the sort of person who always looked for the negative side of things first and despite her being gone for more than 15 years I could still hear her voice jumping to that conclusion. I guess the most annoying part of hearing the voice was that it was partly true.

Tom started out as a mutual game, even when Sonya and Tracey started using the word ‘date’ I was refusing to mention the word. Then we slept together and even my mind started changing the terms it was using and how it was seeing Tom. Then there was Simon’s poorly thought out responses to what he thought the situation was and dammit my mother’s voice was closer to the truth than I wanted to admit.

Of course that was only the voice in my head, my true feelings were somewhat different. Tom might have started out that way but he was also good looking, fun to be with, he had baggage but he didn’t drag it around for all to see and the sex was wonderful.

Before leaving work Sonya had made her usual comments about me and Tom, comments about how much of a lovely couple we made and how she thought it was great we were dating, then of course her reminder to give her all the juicy gossip the following morning. It’s luck she’s so harmless and good hearted because otherwise I might have been annoyed by her intrusion. When we parted company on our walk home, she did offer more than once for me to take an early mark but I refused, her final loud words to me were.

“Ring me if you get lucky I want all the gossip!”

I didn’t give her the satisfaction of a reply, I just hoped no one I knew was in ear shot.

At home after work I had a quick shower and dressed myself up in something a bit more stylish than my work attire. I’m not the kind of girl that has a little black dress, I’ve spent so many years dressing for work and dressing for comfort my closet isn’t like a lot of other women. It wasn’t something I was stressing over, Tom obviously liked me and he’d only seen me really dressed up once, but that still didn’t mean I was going to turn up in my Sunday track pants and “I’m with stupid” T-shirt.

I ended up wearing a purple skirt, yes a bit bold for someone like me I know, and white blouse and was more than happy with the way I looked. Because I had already decided I would walk to Tom’s house, given that I could do the entire walk before night fell, I chose a pair of flat shoes that I could walk in without getting sore feet.

Allowing myself plenty of time, and not worried too much about turning up early given how prompt Tom always was, I left home allowing myself forty minutes to make the twenty five minute journey. The evening was a balmy sixty nine degrees, according to the news on the TV as I got dressed, there was barely a breath of wind and the sinking sun would be behind me the entire way. It was a wonderful evening to be out for a stroll, that was until I got to the end of my driveway and Simon drove past, then stopped.

Even if his driving past was a coincidence I was annoyed, yet again he was interfering with my life. Had he kept driving perhaps I wouldn’t have felt so annoyed but the fact that he stopped and was getting out of the car really did irk me.

“Hey can I offer you a ride somewhere?” he said walking around the back of the car towards me.

“No thanks Simon, I’m going in that direction.” I said pointing in the opposite which would mean walking into the setting sun but also gave me an excuse not to accept his ride.

“That’s ok I don’t mind. Where are you headed?”

“I’m just headed out for dinner.” I replied deliberately not giving full information but refusing to lie to protect him.

I was really getting sick of the way he kept turning up when I didn’t want him to and I was probably within my rights to tell him nothing but it just wasn’t my way. I also didn’t have proof that his arrival wasn’t purely coincidence and therefore didn’t want to completely fly off the handle at him only to find I was wrong.

“You look good dressed up. Who are you going to dinner with? Can’t be Sonya if you’re walking in that direction.”

My first thought was ‘are you serious?’ then my second thought was ‘screw you, if you really want to know I’ll tell you,’ and I did.

“I’m going to Tom’s house for dinner.”

As bitchy as it sounds I nearly added that I’d be happy to accept a lift and make him drive me to Tom’s house, but the dejected look on his face was enough for me to realize that I didn’t need to make things worse.

“Oh so it’s serious is it?” He asked. When I didn’t answer he continued with an apology. “I’m sorry Kat, I obviously didn’t mean it to come out that way. I was just a bit shocked, I mean going to his place, that’s a serious move, what if the guy is some sort of weirdo?”

I can understand Simon was upset and shocked and what he was saying might not have been exactly what he wanted to come out but that didn’t mean I excused him for it.

“Go home Simon, just get back in your car and go home, please.” I said with a sad tone to my voice.

“I’m just trying to look out for you Kat.”

His truth was fairly elastic but mine wasn’t. “No, Simon, you are interfering with my life all because you are slowly making yourself less and less a part of it thanks to your inability to think about me rather than your ex-wife.”

I honestly didn’t want to drag the conversation that low but I guess I was a little more annoyed than I thought, and it wasn’t like he didn’t deserve it. I think even Simon worked out he’d pushed me too far because he immediately said goodbye and got back in his car.

Since Simon was driving away I stood and watched him until he was out of sight then started walking in the direction I had planned to go in the first place. As soon as I took off I reminded myself that I had twenty five minutes to calm down, cool off and stop thinking about Simon. When I got to Tom’s house twenty seven minutes later I think I had managed it.

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