By Paul Jamison

Chapter 24

Chris’s viewpoint continued…

As soon as I’d got in our kitchen I saw Will and Liam making toast with Craig.

“Where’s mine?” we both asked as Jamie’d followed me in guessing that Craig’d be there with Liam.

“Do your own,” Craig smirked at Jamie.

 Mrs Sutherland had followed behind us and said

“Craig, Jamie, home by five, please. You’ve plenty of things to do. This is a schoolday, not the weekend.”

“Okay, Mum,” Craig replied, while Jamie just made a face.

I giggled and waited while Will made me a brew of tea and did me a couple of slices of toast when he asked

“So, all okay?”

“Yeah, thanks. There were an awful lot of people there from Mum’s work though. I didn’t know half of them,” I replied.

“You managed all right with the verse though?” Will asked.

“Yes, but only just and it’s a good thing I actually learned it, so I didn’t need the card as I could hardly see it by the last bit… you know, with my eyes watering so badly,” I replied.

Will looked concerned as he buttered some toast and asked

“Damson, raspberry or strawberry jam?”

“Err… damson, please. Thanks… you know, for everything, especially last night as well,” I said quietly.

Will passed me the plate of buttered toast and jam and simply grinned, but said nothing with the others all around. I took the plate and my mug of tea and went and sat in the window seat to eat and drink while looking out of the drive and down the road at nothing in particular. I was completely drained and felt rather numb inside.

It was well after six thirty and we’d all started our homework before I heard Granddad, Commander Barnes and Rick arrive back home from the reception. A few moments afterwards Adrian, my mum’s old boss, arrived too. They all came into the kitchen where I was doing my homework.

“Chris, well done, that was very well read today,” Rick said.

Granddad nodded his agreement too, then said

“We all need to talk and sort out a few things. Can you leave your homework for a few minutes?”

“Yes, sure, Granddad,” I replied and a decidedly nervous feeling came all over me and I realised that this was it.

“Let’s all sit around the table,” Adrian said, getting some folders out of his briefcase. They all pulled out chairs and sat down around the table with Adrian and Granddad facing towards me. Then Granddad started to speak.

“Chris, I was very pleased today with how you handled everything and also I’ve considerably revised my original attitude to this whole matter. I was, quite frankly, very angry by the upset that your mother’s sudden and very sad death through no fault of her own has caused me. I’d retired and settled into my own ways and they didn’t include being responsible for you in any way. I think I need to explain how all this came about.” Grandfather paused for a moment, took a deep breath and continued.

“When your mother told your grandma that she’d become pregnant with you, your grandma informed me and to say the least we were both angry that such a thing could happen in the way it did. It went against our beliefs of sex outside of a proper marriage. Your biological father was long gone and never heard of again and unless there’s something in your mother’s papers, we don’t know who he was, as he’s not named on your birth certificate.”

Grandad paused for a moment and continued.

“However, once you were born and as I was still at sea, your grandma helped your mum set up home and stayed there during your early years until you started school. When your mum asked us to be named as guardians in the event of anything happening to her your grandma accepted as a matter of course with neither of us imagining that it would actually happen and of course in most cases it never does. But it has and when I got that phone call from Adrian here I was frankly very put out. I didn’t want to get involved, but as I was from then on your legal guardian I had to. Arrangements needed to be made. Fortunately, you’ve friends here who more than ‘looked out for you’ and your immediate needs were sorted out so quickly that I thought I could have little to do with it all. I’m not really up with all the modern ways of doing things. I haven’t got into computers, emails or mobile phones or anything like that. Life is very staid and quiet up in Luss and I was rather scared of the implications of what I was being told, that I’d have be involved in taking on a boy of your age. To put it plainly, it frightened me.”

I looked across at Granddad, not at all sure where he was heading with all of this, but I must have looked extremely anxious because he then continued with

“It was a matter of some relief when I was told that you were being looked after by the family of a school friend. It was even more so when I was told that it was the son of an officer whom I’d known for some time years ago. I felt that I’d be able to seek some advice on what to do. I’ve been told you’ve been asked by just about everyone around this table except me what you wanted or needed to happen from all this mess. There were two main possibilities or perhaps three, but the last I discounted entirely. First, I could come down and dispose of the assets, take you up to Scotland, buy a slightly larger house and you’d see your schooling out up there. That had many drawbacks from your point of view. The time delay in getting all that arranged being one of the main factors against that, there were others. For instance the different school curriculums, the distance you’d have to travel every day to school through all sorts of weather. Yes, we can get more than a bit snowed in up there sometimes. I could’ve called in social services and left it to them. I quickly discounted that. You had family living. So it was my responsibility to organise it, not some faceless institution’s job to see you through. I was dreading coming down as I had no clear plan of action at all. That was until I received some further possibilities, none of which I’d dreamt of as existing. It seemed a possible solution, but also an impossible one too. Let me explain.”

Granddad took a pause and then continued.

“I was told that you could live with the friends that were looking after William, Frank’s son, and just carry on at school as before. I read all the details of this on the train on the way down and I just could not conceive of allowing complete strangers to be responsible for what I’d agreed to take on years ago. It was my job, not theirs, to do this. Also the fact that you’d be living with a ‘gay couple’ gave me cause for concern also. I  knew of your own situation as your mum did tell me not long before your birthday and I was, quite frankly, upset by what I heard and, well, the church I attend has somewhat divided opinions on the matter. From reluctant acceptance to downright opposition best describes their attitudes. My own feelings I pretty much kept to myself, having seen a bit more of the world than some of those folks up there have, believe me. I’ve long thought that being ‘gay’, as you call it now, is a naturally occurring, condition, much like being red haired or left handed and there’s bugger all you can do about it…  Oh, sorry, perhaps rather inappropriate way of putting that, but I’m still a Navy man and that’s the way it is below decks.”

I grinned sheepishly at Granddad’s forthright way of putting things and said

“That’s all right, Mum always said you spoke as you saw it,” and giggled.

Granddad smiled back, the first real one I’d seen since I set eyes on him the evening before, and carried on.

“Yes, I do, and sometimes it doesn’t go down too well, especially with your Grandma, who couldn’t abide ‘Navy talk’. So, back to the matter of you. I was very concerned, until I’d met everyone here and had two very long talks with Frank about your living with other gay people. I thought the unimaginable would be going on.  I’ve seen very clearly that there’s nothing of the sort happening here. This house is all very shipshape and you get down to your schoolwork and chores and there’s well… um… nothing inappropriate going on,” Granddad hurried on to say. “So, the upshot is, that it’s up to you. You can come and live with me out in the wilds, so to speak, or you can stay here to finish your schooling, go on to college, or whatever’s appropriate for a career when decisions of that sort need to be taken. You’ll always be welcome in my home and so will any partner that you honestly take up with… but not perhaps by some of the church members up there. That’ll be their problem, not yours. That’s how it is with them. They’ll take their prejudices to their graves, I think. There’s no changing those that’ve closed their minds.”

“Unfortunately, I think you’re right there. We’ve living proof of that with Liam’s situation and there’s no sign it’ll ever change to be honest,” Rick said.

Everyone’s eyes turned towards me, obviously hoping I’d have something to say at once.

“Um… what exactly does that mean?” I asked.

“You mean the legal mechanics of it all or something else?” Adrian asked me.

“I think the legal stuff. I do want to understand what’s been decided, please,” I replied.

“Nothing’s actually been decided or signed. We’re really waiting for your input, but…” and Adrian looked to either side at Granddad and the others, and when they all nodded, he turned back and went on “There were basically the three options. One rejected by your grandfather and the other two for you to express a preference for or against. In simple words, to move in here with Paul and Rick as your responsible adults, as it’s called in law, with your grandfather remaining your guardian. All the everyday decisions will be taken by Rick or Paul. In the event of your grandfather passing on before you reach eighteen, then Paul and Rick will continue until you are eighteen and then you fully inherit your mother’s estate. Until then, we’ll rent out the house to provide funds for your schooling and board and lodging here. Or second choice… you can up sticks and go and live in Luss, or wherever’s decided by the two of you. That’s basically your choices. Previously, when we’ve all asked you, you’ve very much said you wish to stay here with your friends, and especially stay at the Royal Grammar. Have you changed your mind on that?” Adrian asked.

“No, at least… no I haven’t. I just wanted to know all the stuff and how it’d be arranged, that’s all,” I replied, then added “I do want to stay here.”

Everyone smiled and I thought it was more out of relief than anything. It was for me. I felt so happy that I could stay and I wasn’t sure why I’d asked those questions anyway now. I’d actually said what I’d wanted ever since the day after the accident. Granddad had explained so much that I realised he had not actually known what to do for the best, that’d caused him not to say very much to me before.

“Thanks, Chris, that’s it. You can leave it to us to make it all legal and next weekend there’ll be a big clearout of your old home and it’ll be got ready for renting. You’re home is here now until you’re eighteen at the very least,” Adrian explained as he started getting papers out that were obviously to be signed to make it all legal.

“I should just add that I’ve had Adrian make a new will for me from today. As you’d expect I’d previously left everything to your mother, but as that’s no longer possible, I’ve had it redone with you as the beneficiary,” Grandfather explained.

I must’ve gawped, but managed to nod and then escape from the room for a bit, head whirling, as I couldn’t quite take in all that’d happened that day.

* * *

Rick’s viewpoint…

Once Chris had left the room Adrian busied himself with copies of legal guardianship agreements and a new will for Rory Griffin.  I called Frank next door and Vanessa and asked them to come in as signature witnesses. A few minutes later they both arrived and we all signed all the papers in the marked places and had them duly witnessed. That all done Vanessa excused herself to rush back to attend to their family meal and I turned to everyone and said

“Let’s call Mario’s and eat out…” I suggested. “It’s just been a hell of a day,”

“Very good idea. Count me out though,” Adrian replied and added “I’ve job applicants to interview tomorrow and hope to have a new PA appointed before Christmas, if all goes to plan.”

“Oh, that should make your life a little easier,” I replied.

“I’m certainly hoping so. We all need to get back to a normal routine now,” he replied, as he gathered his papers together, giving those of us who needed them the relevant copies. A few moments later he was out of the door and on his way. As the door closed behind him I turned to Frank and said

“Frank, you’ll come of course?”

“Certainly. I enjoyed eating there back in the summer, if it’s the same place.”

“Yes, it’s not changed at all,” I replied.

“Right, in that case, call them and book. Give my name. I’ll be paying tonight,” he said firmly.

“Oh, okay, if you’re sure,” I replied.

“Very definitely so. You’ve done more than enough these last few days for everyone. Italian food okay with you, Rory?” he asked.

“Definitely, yes. We’ve not got one of those anywhere near us,” Rory replied and added “That’ll be quite a treat, thank you.”

I called the restaurant and spoke to Mario. He took our booking with delight as it’d been a month or so since we’d had time to go there and enjoy a meal.

“All sorted for eight o’clock. That should give the boys enough time for essential homework,” I said, after replacing the receiver.

Just then Will appeared in the kitchen doorway.

“Yes, young man?” Frank asked.

“Um… I was just wondering when supper’d be, Dad,” he replied.

“Oh, you were, were you?” Frank replied, smiling at the rest of us and then, warming to the questions, asked “And have you finished all your homework?”

“Um… well… no, not quite. I’ve still some to do,” Will admitted uncomfortably.

“You’d better get a move on then as we’re all going out to eat at seven forty-five, well, those of us who’ve done all that needs to be done anyway. I hope that’ll include you, but if the work’s not done…” Frank tailed off.

“Dad! Where’re we going?” Will asked, with an extremely exasperated look on his face.

We’re going to Mario’s. You might remember eating there a couple of times in the summer. We all hope you’ll be joining us… but if the work’s not finished… Rick, have you any leftovers in the fridge in case we have to leave him behind to finish his homework?”

“Yes, I’m sure we can find a bit of cheese for cheese on toast or something,” I replied, trying ever so hard to keep a straight face while doing so.

“Oh, good. So no danger that he’ll starve then?” Frank grinned.

Will went very red in the face and scuttled out of the room and back towards his own as fast as his legs would carry him and we all just laughed.

“Tea, everyone, or something stronger?” I asked.

“Tea’s fine,” Frank said. “I’ll have something stronger with the food later. Who’ll drive?”

“We’ll get that minibus taxi and then we don’t have to worry. It’s getting close to Christmas now and there are too many idiots out there to risk anything,” Rick said and went to the phone to book the minibus.

“Good thought,” Frank observed and added “All things considered, that is.”

We all nodded in sombre agreement seeing as we’d just attended a funeral caused by a road accident… the full circumstances of which were still being investigated by the police.

* * *

Will’s viewpoint…

I rapidly climbed the stairs intending to go to my room and finish some homework I’d been hoping to leave till another day, when it occurred to me that Chris had had a talk with his granddad and everyone, and so probably had been told what was to happen. To be honest, I was totally curious to know what had been decided also. So I knocked on his door in the hope of finding out more.

“Come in,” Chris called in a deep sonorous voice.

I giggled and opened his door and went in. He was lying on his bed and sat up as I entered.

“What’s with the deep voice?” I asked.

“Oh, I’m just practising a possible voice for the school play. It’s got to sound… um… well sort of old and pompous,” he explained.

“They want an older boy for that surely?” I suggested.

“They may well do, but they’ve very few of those interested… apart from Craig and two others,” he replied and added “So we’re making do with whoever’s available.”

“Yeah, always the way, seems sixth formers don’t like performing much,” I said, then asked “So, anything been decided yet?”

“Oh, yes. I’m staying here. It’s definite and we need to clear out my old house this weekend so they can rent it out to pay for me and that sort of stuff.”

“Oh, right, what? Just like that?”

“Yeah, odd that. I was really expecting a big ding dong of an argument, but he’s just gone along with what everyone wanted… well, deffo what I wanted to happen, anyway,” Chris explained.

“Don’t see you complaining though,” I said.

“No, no way. I’m really pleased and very relieved as well. I mean I totally worked my bollocks off to get a full scholarship to the Royal Grammar, you know, and I like it there. I like the friends I’ve made and I’d’ve hated a tiny village in Scotland. I just know I would. So it’s going to be okay, I think.”

“Oh, we’re all going out to eat tonight. We’re leaving here at seven forty-five, okay?”

“Really? On a school night?” Chris asked.

“Really, really, my Dad’s arranged it and I’ve gotta get some more reading done before we go or he says I’ll be staying behind with mouldy cheese. Don’t think he really meant that, but I’d better make an effort. He can be a bit firm about school stuff,” I explained.

“My mum was like that too. No TV till homework’s done,” Chris smiled and lapsed into silent thought for a moment before saying “I really do miss her, you know. I feel pretty bad at night still.”

“It’ll get better, I’m sure. It did for me, but it did take a while before I felt okay, and not lonely inside anymore.”

Chris nodded and we both stayed silent for a few moments until I said

“Right. I’d best get that English reading done. We’re going to Paul and Rick’s fave Italian restaurant, Mario’s, tonight. I’ve been before, two or three times, I think. It’s really good. You’ll like it,” I explained.

Chris’s face lit up. “I know it.  Mum’s talked about it and told me it was really very good.”

I nodded and turned to go.

“Right then, be downstairs by a quarter to eight. See ya,” I said, as I left his room and headed upstairs to my own.

As soon as I’d got to the next landing I gave Liam’s door a knock and the moment he called out I went in. Liam was sitting at his computer and turned around to face me.

“Chris’s is staying with us. His granddad’s just decided,” I said.

“Oh, I bet he’s relieved. Wonder what persuaded his granddad,” Liam replied.

“That’s easy. I bet it was my dad. Once he’s decided something’s a good idea he just talks people round. I reckon that’s what it was anyway,” I said and added “Oh, we’re all going out to Mario’s, the Italian place tonight too. Be ready downstairs by seven forty-five, okay.”

“Oh, right. On a school night?”

“Seems that it’s special, as Chris is staying and it was the funeral today and nothing’s sorted out for tonight and his granddad’s going back to Scotland tomorrow afternoon,” I explained.

“I like going there. The food’s really good. I’d better get this work finished then. Thanks, Will,” Liam said, as he turned back to his computer and I left his room and went to my own.

Once back in my room I immediately started on the reading I had to do for the next day.

* * *

Paul’s viewpoint…

I’d just returned from work at around seven thirty and found Rick, Frank and Rory all sat around our kitchen table chatting.

“Hi everyone,” I said as I closed the door on the frosty night outside. “So, how did everything go today?” I asked.

“Very well, I thought,” Rory Griffin said and added “Chris said his piece well, but was quite upset by the last few lines. He carried on though. He’s got some guts, you know, to do that.”

We all nodded in agreement and then I asked Rory

“Have you made a decision regarding Chris yet?”

“Yes, we have. He’s staying here with you two and continuing at the Grammar school. It’s decidedly the best option and it’s what Chris wants,” he replied.

“What made you decide to leave Chris down here to continue at the Grammar School?”

“It wasn’t actually just one particular thing, but there were several factors. Um… not least of which is I’ve only a one bedroom cottage, and not a very large one at that. The upheaval to both of us on top of what he’s already gone through wouldn’t have been sensible. Had there been no alternatives, then it might have been different. Also, I’m not at all sure he’d’ve fitted in, in a Scottish village. There’d have been some, especially at my church, who wouldn’t have welcomed him at all. We’ll leave that there as you already know what I mean through young Liam’s problems.”

“Yes, we certainly do. There’ve been some problems, believe me, over that aspect of his leaving home. His mother was not happy, not at all happy,” I said.

Rory continued. “Then there was the school itself, and the fact that Christopher’d earned his place there from hard work. Now, that I can appreciate. When the Headmaster explained that his fees were all covered right through to his A levels, then I really would’ve had to think very hard about changing any of that. As for leaving Chris here for the next four years, I didn’t have to think too long about that at all. It was simply if it was good enough for Frank’s lad William, then it was definitely good enough for my Chris. So that’s how it happened,” Rory finished.

“Thank you for that. It means a lot to us when someone trusts us with young lads like the ones we have here. We’ve taken it very seriously indeed. I know that we always show, or seem to show, a friendly exterior, but they’ve all toed the line… so far anyway. We’ve had a few sulks, but to be honest nothing at all that could be considered to be a serious tantrum or anything at all like that. Perhaps we’ve just been exceedingly lucky or they were good lads in the first place and so had and understood standards. I don’t really know,” I replied.

“Well, they’ve all been at the Grammar school and standards are high there. The rules and insistence on proper uniform wouldn’t suit everyone. So to some extent you’ve been sheltered from the worst sort of teen, I suppose,” Frank suggested.

“There’s some truth in that, of course,” I replied, then added “But it’s not just the school. They’re actually just decent lads, who just happen to be gay, but that’s only a part of their make up. I think any lad could or would benefit from a plain, straightforward upbringing, regardless of whether he happened to be gay as well. That’s really all a youngster wants. The very last thing they need is to be set upon with religion in the way Liam was. All that did was drive him away,” I offered by way of explanation.

“We can go on about that all night. So let’s stop, and leave it there for now,” Frank suggested.

We all nodded in agreement and continued chatting until the boys started to drift down to the kitchen just before seven forty-five, obviously keen to go and eat by then.

At just after seven forty-five the minibus taxi arrived and we all made our way out to the road and got in. Ten minutes later we were pulling into the car park for Mario’s Ristorante. We got out and as Rick paid the driver he reminded him of the arrangement for him to come back for us at ten pm.  

* * *

Chris’s viewpoint…

I was pretty excited about going out for a meal as it’d not been that happy a day. I’d never been to a funeral before and it was all so final when those curtains closed around my mum’s coffin and we were led out to thank those who had attended.

The really good thing was that later Granddad agreed to let me stay with Paul and Rick, and that I’d carry on at school just as before. That was the only good thing to come out of it all that I could see just then. So, we all went into the restaurant and we were obviously expected as a large round table had been set aside for the seven of us.

We were shown to our seats by Mario and I sat next to my granddad on one side and Liam on the other. Paul sat next to Granddad on the other side, then Commander Barnes, Will and finally Rick next to Liam. Mario gave us all large menus to look at and also brought a wine list that Commander Barnes took.

“Would you like some wine or not, Liam, seeing it’s a school night?” Commander Barnes asked him.

“Just one glass with the main course, please, Commander,” Liam replied.

“Okay,” Commander Barnes replied, and studied the list.

I was looking at the menu when Paul suddenly asked

“When do you lot break up for Christmas holidays?”

“Friday,” Liam replied and continued “We’ve got the school play tomorrow and Thursday. It starts at seven thirty and we should be home by eleven, those of us in it, and that’s only Craig and Chris from our lot, and then we break up mid afternoon on Friday and go back on January 5th,” he replied.

“Tonight’s the last night for homework, but we’ll have some holiday work to do though,” Will added.

“Have we bought tickets?” Rick asked.

“Yes, we’ve two, but I think we need more now. I’d forgotten all about that with everything that’s been going on these last two weeks,” Paul said.

“Are there any more tickets to be had?” Rick asked.

“Yes,” I replied. “The auditorium holds three hundred and they’ve sold out for the first night, but had about seventy left for the second according to Mr Stonebridge this morning.”

“I’ve got my own ticket for the second night. I wanted to see Craig, you see,” Liam explained.

“You might’ve mentioned it, Liam,” Paul protested.

“I did. I said at breakfast a week ago I was getting tickets. Rick asked me to get two for you and I did, and one for me. Will wasn’t bothered,” Liam replied.

“Would you get one each for me and William, please, Liam? I take it you’re in it, Chris?” Commander Barnes asked me.

Liam and I answered yes together.

“Good, that’s sorted. Why don’t we have these holiday dates in writing?” Commander Barnes asked in general.

“You do,” Will replied. “They come in a printed sheet with end of year reports. They cover the whole school year from September to July. It’s also on the school’s website… under… um… holidays,” Will added, grinning widely.

“Okay, clever clogs! Print a couple off when you get home tonight, please, Will. We need one on the fridge door so we know what’s happening,” Paul asked.

“Okay,” he replied, still grinning and obviously pleased that he’d caught the adults totally unprepared for the end of term, now just three days away.

“If I’d’ve realised that you were involved I would have tried to arrange to stay a day longer,” Granddad said to me.

“It’s okay. I honestly wasn’t much in the mood for it all until now,” I said and continued “I’ve been rehearsing all term and so I know it all and we did the dress rehearsal on Monday. I wasn’t sure how I’d feel after today. But I wish I’d known before that I could stay,” I explained.

“I know. I realise I’ve had you all in the air over my indecision,” Granddad replied and added “But to be honest I’d not made any decisions until this morning, you see.”

“I know that now,” I replied smiling.

Mario came back to take our orders and we chose what we wanted. I had a large pizza with ham, mushrooms, cheese and tomato toppings. The others ordered what they wanted. Liam had a glass of wine, but the rest of us had Cokes.

It wasn’t long before our meals arrived and as usual us lads got stuck in while the adults took longer and chatted a lot more. Then, after the main course had been cleared and the sweets menu was brought to us, Will went positively crazy over the tiramisu which he said was so, so good. I ordered one of those as well.

Will was right. It was seriously scrummy and I felt so full after a huge pizza, two Cokes and then a large sweet. We were all done and Commander Barnes paid the bill. It was almost ten so we put our coats back on and waited just inside the restaurant until our minibus taxi arrived. Then, as quickly as we could over the icy ground, we left the restaurant and got into the taxi for the journey home.

Once back home Commander Barnes and Granddad headed next door, but Granddad turned to me and said

“Come and say goodbye just before you go to school. I have to catch the 11.50 train and won’t have another chance.”

“Okay, I’ll come over just after eight, all right?” I said. I was about to turn away and go inside when he suddenly pulled me into a hug and said

“You’re all I’ve got left now. Do well, be yourself, lad. That’s all I ask, okay?”

“Yes, Granddad,” I managed to say before tearing up, and as soon as he let go, I rushed inside to the kitchen where the others were making coffee and then after taking off my outside coat hurried away to my room. I sat down on my bed, not noticing my English textbook until my bum landed sharply on it. I gave a loud “ouch” and as suddenly got up and moved it. I still hadn’t got a proper desk in my room. Just then a knock on the door followed by an anxious

“Chris, are you all right?” and Will came quickly into my room.

I turned and replied “Yeah, sorry, just sat down on this English book, that’s all, and it sorta hurt,” I explained grinning.

Will laughed and sat down. “I wondered if you were, you know, okay. I mean you rushed upstairs and looked a bit red eyed after saying goodnight to your granddad. I just wondered if anything was wrong,” he said with a concerned look.

“No, nothing’s wrong. I actually think that things will turn out all right in the end. I’ve got along okay with Granddad… he’s on my side, that’s for sure.”

“Yeah, I think he’s okay. Dad does too. I can tell. Seems he takes his time to think out stuff…”

“Yeah, looks like it, doesn’t it? He said tonight he’d not even made up his mind till this afternoon about what was to be done. So it was hardly surprising he said nothing till then, I suppose. It was all going round in his head… just like it all was in mine actually.”

“Yeah, I bet. You were a bit out of it last night, you know.”

“I know, and thank you for being there. I’ll never forget that,” I quietly replied.

“Yeah, that’s exactly what friends are for. Do you reckon you’ll be okay now?”

“Oh, deffo.  I think I’ll be just fine now,” I replied.

Will smiled and got up and as he was opening the door turned and said

“All you need now is for us to get you a boyfriend,” and with that he closed the door behind him and I could hear him giggling away to himself as he went upstairs to his own room.

‘If only,’ I thought as I sat back on my bed with my back to the headboard, hands clasped around my knees. ‘Wouldn’t that be great? Chance’d be a fine thing,’ I reasoned in my head as I tried to come back down to earth and get ready for bed. ‘Chance’d be a fine thing!’


End of Chapter 24


 Many thanks again for the emails. Don't forget for news of latest posting join my Yahoo Group. You will get an email and link to latest chapter as it happens.

This story draws to a close soon.... But i am preparing a new on that should begin to appear sometime into the Newy Year. Until then best wishes to all my readers.

Paul Jamison December 2010.

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