by Sandra Crook
him chopping the top off his boiled egg, and
spooning the contents out onto his freshly
told him soldiers were for dipping, and not to be
used as undercarriage for the egg, but for the
umpteenth time hed responded that he liked
his eggs firm, like his women.
you crack me up, she thought grimly,
steeling herself against the slow creep of
boredom and exasperation that threatened to
engulf her these days.
He shook out
been reading this? he asked, eyeing the
less than pristine crease down the centrefold.
it was the dog. She was confident he would
not be paying attention.
should be re-folded properly.
tell him, she said, but you know what
be a bit late tonight. Sales meeting. What are we
having for dinner? he said, shrugging
himself into his jacket.
with toadstools, and stewed dandelion leaves with
custard for dessert.
He kissed her cheek absently. Go easy on
the garlic will you, dear?
gone, she finished clearing the table, and took
another cup of coffee out into the garden where
she lit a forbidden cigarette.
wondered, did he ever get so boring?
to the guy she married fifteen years ago, the one
who kept her in stitches with his jokes, the man
who could startle her with his perceptive
observations about life in general?
Where was the
spontaneous lover, the quicksilver intellect that
had kept her on her toes?
pulling out the ironing board and spent the next
hour or so ironing his regulation white shirts,
pressing his supposedly perma-creased slacks,
pairing his uniform grey socks, and folding his
Where were the
denim jeans, the flip-flops, and the washed-out
tee shirts these days, she wondered.
She took the
ironed clothes upstairs and, searching for more
hangers, she rummaged at the back of his wardrobe.
There was an unfamiliar suit carrier hanging from
the rail, and beneath it a small vanity case,
unlike anything she had ever owned.
them, she investigated further, her jaw dropping
It was almost
eight when he let himself into the house. There
was no sign of dinner being underway. He frowned.
He entered the
dimly lit sitting room and jumped nervously when
he saw her sitting in the corner, glass of wine
in hand and a half smoked cigarette dangling from
He sniffed and
I dont like
she hissed. Come here.
uneasily in the doorway.
to kiss you, she said urgently.
He ran a
finger round the inside his collar.
dearest, for the first time in years, you
actually interest me.
He blinked at
talk in riddles. Wheres my dinner?
of time for dinner later, dearest. Right now
Ive got something else in mind. See how
Ive dolled myself up for you?
The dress did
look familiar to George.
got plans for us this evening, she
continued. So I thought Id wear your
dont understand, he muttered, though
he was beginning to think he did.
favourite dress, she drawled. You naughty