A real woman? With breasts and everything?




If no one took risks, Michelangelo would’ve painted the Sistine floor

Neil Simon


I don’t make friends very easily.

I am generally not too tolerant of the human race, nor they of me.

Adam aside, I know lots of people, but not well and that’s how I like it.

Now, I was single and some months had gone by, I needed to make more of an effort before I became so introverted I turned into one of those serial killers you see on ‘Luther’, who randomly goes out killing people and ticking them off a checklist.

And Summer allowed me to make a start.

She worked in a different office to me, but we got chatting over curled up sandwiches at our monthly meetings.

We swapped emails and then text messages.

But I knew very little about her personal life.

She was four years younger than me. Her boyfriend was 20 years older than her. The attraction appeared to not be the size of his stomach, rather the size of his bank balance.

And she looked nothing like Victoria.

So over a stale ‘meat’ (not sure what animal) finger roll and slightly soggy crisps, she suggested we should go and do something.

“Like what?”

“I don’t know. Go up to London? See a show. Get you out?”

I must’ve had that unsure look, but she carried on about it, until I agreed.

So we arranged it for a couple of months time.

Gave me ample opportunity to find an excuse to cancel, but the funny thing was, I didn’t.

I couldn’t think of a reason not to go.

She never sent me texts in the evening. At times it felt like we were having an affair, but with none of the good bits.

I could feel myself getting uptight as the weekend got closer.

Summer was complaining about being tired from working such long hours.

I think I was the only one who ever told her to slow down.

The night before we’d arranged to go, I sat there, feeling restless. The TV was lame and I couldn’t settle. There were a million things going on in my head. So I made my excuses, went upstairs and closed the door of my bedroom. I spread out the photos of Victoria and I, all over the floor, looking at them. Smurf came over and sat next to me. I fussed him and he laid down and leaned into me.

I had these waves of panic come over me when I allowed myself to think about her not being here. I was sure I should’ve done more. But in my defence, I didn’t see it coming.

She had been so happy just the week before.

The rabbit had gone to sleep, so I kissed the top of his head and spent some time putting together a CD for Summer.

Full of laid-back songs, not ballads, nothing romantic, but something that might help her relax in the evening.

Better than medication or alcohol.

Actually, thinking about it, I should’ve recorded me talking.

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