New Tangled Tango #72


As it became time for Steve to return home, Cathy drew him close and begged him to take care. She had arranged to take the afternoon off so that he could see her and wave to her as Marjorie carried out her attempted ‘Judas’ kiss.

She asked him to be satisfied with a genuine one with her. He gladly obliged.


Thursday 19th May  Day 3 of the Primary School visits.

Marjorie was on top form today. She had brought photographs of times they had shared. She had asked him did he ever think back to those days and regret the way things had turned out.

Having discussed all types of possibilities with Cathy, he was forewarned that she might be trying to record these moments on her ‘phone. His replies always remained reassuring yet anodyne. He wanted her to feel that she may need to try harder.

Over lunch, she had managed to secure a chair next to him. As they discussed the day’s progress as a school visit, she had still managed to bring her shoulder and upper arm in contact with his as she made a point.

A similar attempt at intimacy had been to talk to someone from her school, further down, on the other side of Steve. At such moments she always managed to lean against him somehow.

As the final afternoon assembly ended, she asked him to walk with her to the school gate in order to talk to him about how things were between her and Julian. They were not going particularly well, she’d said, and she’d value his advice.

As they walked, she’d keep stopping to turn to him and to speak angrily about Julian being worse than he’d ever been.

Just as they were reaching the gate, she attempted to spring her trap, but he’d already spotted Cathy’s anxious face amongst those of waiting parents. He managed, as Marjorie reached for his hand, to turn to wave to Cathy and to call her name. He moved away from Marjorie, apologising for having to rush, and telling her, as he left, that Cathy was waiting for him, but how pleasant it had been to catch up on old times – and to thank her for her company.

As he passed through the gate to her he noticed a man with a mobile phone raised as if to take a photograph.

“Too late, Pal,” he thought, but then realised that Julian would probably have been as relieved as he was to have avoided the completion of Marjorie’s scheme.

Cathy threw her arms around him and entreated him to come home to her house as soon as he could manage.

He turned and saw that Marjorie was still standing there, open-mouthed, unbelieving the cruelty of fate.

Thursday 19th May  At Cathy’s house that evening

Cathy had ordered a home delivery form the local Chinese eatery. Relief was written all over her face. She had clung onto him with all her strength as she opened the door to him, before taking his arm to lead him into her Living Room to express her happiness that it was all over.

“Did you see her face?” she asked as they sat, “When you damn near ran away from her to come to me, she was apoplectic with fury. When, shortly afterwards, you passed her, going back in to get your car, she strode over to Julian, snapping at him as though it was all his fault – which it was in a way – but it hadn’t been him who was in the wrong. Her nasty plan deserved to fail. I wonder if their relationship will survive that – his seeing her vindictiveness and his lack of trust in her motives.”

“But all the waiting in the world to find out what someone is like before taking the plunge doesn’t necessarily prepare you for the reality,” he said, “Julian’s now found out in spades. That’s just one side of the equation though. You can wait an eternity, and in the process miss out on years of a wonderful partnership, only realising too late – I wish we’d got together sooner. At our age we sometimes need to take a risk.”

“I only wish that we’d found out about our true natures earlier,” she said, “I know now that I’ve probably lost out on a lot of happiness.”

“Well, now we can heave a sigh of relief,” he said, “I can’t see her trying again now. I just hope that she’s learned a lesson.”

“Can we? She said, “Heave a sigh of relief? Because if so, let’s get on the ‘phone to our kids.”

“There’s just one matter that I don’t think that we should mention,” Steve said, reaching across to take her hand.

Cathy looked at him, wondering what was concerning him.

“i don’t think that we should mention Marjorie’s role in bringing forward our decision,” he explained, “She’s still Peter’s Mum. He might want to disagree with our intention of her motives. I don’t think that she will want to raise the matter with him. If we tell him about how we played along he may conclude that we were in the wrong. If we tell him about Julian warning you, that could cause trouble between them and we could be blamed for that too.”

She smiled, “I can live with that. Let’s stick with the good news about us, unless she raises it in some form or another. I agree with you, though. It wouldn’t put her in a good light with Peter.”

“I still have one question,” he said, “This Blackpool trip with the Dance set is almost on us. It’s just a Saturday day-trip, but what do you say to us booking a hotel and making a weekend of it? Our personal celebration. We can make our way back on Sunday afternoon by train.”

“Good idea!” she said, ” Can I leave that with you to arrange, but, for now let’s contact our youngsters and let them know about – us and organise a new family celebration.”

Well, we started today’s episode with drama at the the school gates – and bring our story to its close with a sigh of relief planning a weekend of love in Blackpool along with family celebrations. I think that the role of the photos is self-evident for once, so I’ll just supply the usual details.

EXIF data – for the Blackpool photo were: My Pentax K3ii 24 MP cropped-sensor dslr camera with a Pentax 16-85 mm f/3.5-5.6 lens: 1/125 secs @ f/8 and 16 mm. ISO was 100.


Author: writingandphotography0531

I am a retired local government officer. At that time, I was an IT manager and had associated responsibilities for training. I have previously been involved, in various organisations, with aspects of industrial training and management development. My hobby is photography and, until recently, hillwalking in Snowdonia. I have just written my first novel, Persephone and the Photographer, published as a Kindle eBook.

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