Continues from here.
After Tom left I couldn’t shake the feeling that Simon was going to turn up at either the front or back door sometime. It was a feeling that continually wandered into my mind every few minutes, especially the times I thought I heard a noise at the back door.
If he was to visit, the front door and straight up to the counter seemed like the most logical choice, not only would such a move see one expecting to get most of the way to the kitchen but at the right time with enough customers present staff members creating a scene would not be a good thing. Alternatively with the back door the guy could mount a surprise attack, so to speak, because he knew it was always unlocked and he could walk in at any time expecting to see me at my usual workstation, the sink. No matter how many times I tried to put my mind at rest those thoughts kept wandering in and hanging around until I gave them attention.
At 5pm, just as Francis was preparing to leave for the day, my mind went into overdrive for a few seconds when I heard the back door open. It was only seconds before Francis was going to be walking out the same door but my mind knew that she was still standing behind me and not close enough to the door to be opening it. I immediately turned expecting to see Simon walking in as if he owned the place, walking in ready for another fight, but thankfully it wasn’t him, it was Tom and Tracey. I honestly do not know what I would have said to Simon had it been him who stepped into the kitchen but I don’t mind telling you I breathed a huge sigh of relief when I realized it wasn’t him.
“Oh hello you two, I was just leaving,” Francis said cheerfully before bidding us all farewell and leaving the building.
Once she was out the door Tom was the first to speak. “Look what I picked up on the way here tonight.” He said pointing towards Tracey then before anyone had a chance to answer he added, “They were selling them three for a dollar down on Cannes St. I told them I was too poor to afford three so they threw me one of the rejects for nothing!”
Had an outsider been standing there looking at Tracey’s face as Tom said that they’d have believed that she was about ready to kill him and would not have thought the two of them could have been friends for years, but alas that is part of their charm.
“The reject was already in the car when I got in!” Tracey bit back.
“Good afternoon Tom.” I said right before I walked up to him and planted a big kiss on his lips.
“Eww, you’re kissing a reject.” Tracey said as we kissed, obviously not willing to let the game drop immediately.
“Shuddup and kiss me like that!” Sonya said. “It’s not often we get to see affection around this place so if she can get some I reckon I’m entitled too.
“Oh yeah you are entitled, that’s for sure.” I said adding my two cents into the conversation.
It really was good that we could still joke around given the bullshit I’d managed to drag us all through during the weeks before but I think that’s the show of a really good relationship, they withstand even the stupidest of shit.
“It’s good to see you, I didn’t expect to see you until dinner time.” I said to Tom.
“I figured I’d come around and offer you a ride home.”
”Thank you, but honestly you didn’t need to, I’d have been happy to walk home.”
“I just thought…you know.” Tom obviously hadn’t thought his part of the conversation through, or he was nervous about what he was trying to say. I guess it could have been a bit of both. “With what happened this morning…I just thought…umm…thought that offering you a ride might be a good idea.”
“It’s not necessary, even if Simon stopped me on the way home I could handle him.” I saw just a hint of doubt in Tom’s eyes but I was fairly sure it wasn’t doubt in what I was saying it was that Simon had become such an unknown lately that taking anything he did for granted might be a mistake. “But I am thankful for having someone so caring come to my rescue.”
Although we were all in the same room Tracey and Sonya respected our conversation and neither tried to interrupt our conversation. It wasn’t until I had finished my little speech and there had been a few seconds of silence that Sonya actually spoke.
“Well that explains him showing up here, what’s your excuse babe?”
“Tom told you, three for a dollar down on Cannes St.” Tracey replied with a smirk.
“Awe don’t sell yourself short babe, I’d pay at least fifty cents for you!”
“Yeah but we’ve already established that you are entitled!” Tom added before Tracey could get another comment in.
“Are we going to stand around here all night throwing insults at each other or are we going to actually clean this place up so we can go home?” Sonya asked.
Sonya wasn’t shitty with way the conversation had turned on her and her voice showed that, she just didn’t have any thing else to add to the conversation so changed it to something that was a little more important.
“Yeah you’ve got a point, this bantering, as lovely as it is, is not getting us any closer to home.” I said in agreement.
“What can I do?” Tom asked.
I never did find out the real reason Tracey turned up that day but like Tom she kicked in and helped finished the clean up of the place and by 6pm the place was in a fit enough state to be left for the night.
“Who wants to go out for dinner?” Tom said as we all stepped outside and I locked the door behind us.
Both Sonya and I commented on the fact that we were not dressed for going out for dinner, not that we were that ratty looking but neither of us really wanted to go out for dinner in our work clothes.
“How about take away?” Tom said as he stepped up to his car.