Tales from the Finchbottom Vale – (17) Copper Beech Farm (Part 04)
Good to her word Charlotte opened the door and stepped onto the mat half an hour later.
“Take your boots off and get in there” he said and marched her into the utility “no more work today”
“But what about Dyno-Rod?”
“I’ll deal with them” he said “take your coat off and put it on the drainer”
While she obliged he opened the tumble dryer and took out the dry towels and a bathrobe that where in side which had already been washed and dried then he handed Charlotte the clean robe and said
“Take off everything you have on that’s wet, pants as well if necessary, and put them in the tumble dryer then put on the robe and come into the kitchen, ok?”
Charlotte nodded and he went out and shut the door behind him and by the time she emerged from the utility he had made a bowl of soup for her and coffee for them both.
“Thank you that was lovely” she said after she’d finished eating and then she shivered
“No problem” he said and picked up her bowl
“I’m still worried about that drain” Charlotte said and shivered again
“Forget about the damn drain, go and have a shower and get warmed up, you must be chilled to the bone”
“Anthony?” she began
“Would you mind very much if…?”
“If what?” he asked
“If I had a bath instead, I only have a shower and I never get the chance to have a bath”
“Of course you can” he said and smiled and then took her upstairs and showed her to the en suite bathroom in his bedroom,
The main bathroom in the farmhouse had a good sized tub and would easily accommodate her long gangly legs.
He gave her the fresh towels from the tumble dryer and told her where the bubble bath and lotions and potions were.
“Enjoy” he said, “Soak for as long as you like”
“Thanks Anthony” she said “for everything”
“What do you mean?” he asked
“Giving me the job, hot soup and a hot bath, and for caring” she replied
“My Dad believed in you and I could see why, that was all” he said, “You did the rest, as for caring, that I can take no credit for, it was the way I was brought up”
She smiled and he closed the door,
What she didn’t realise was that his actions in helping her weren’t wholly driven by philanthropy he did actually care about her however at that time even he didn’t know quite how much.
He sat in the kitchen drinking coffee and staring out through the rain streaked window and after about half an hour he went into the utility room and checked the contents of the tumble drier.
He had no idea what was in there as Charlotte had already loaded it and then he merely switched it on.
So firstly he took everything out, socks (still a bit damp) dungarees (still wet) t-shirt (dry) pants, (dry) and a white bra also dry.
He put the dungarees and socks back in the dryer and closed the door to finish them off and then he took the t-shirt, pants and bra into the lounge.
As is was a cold damp day he had already lit the fire and put her wet boots and jacket in front of it and they were steaming happily.
Just as he returned to the kitchen he heard the sound of a vehicle in the yard so he slipped on his coat and wellies and went out to speak to the man from Dyno-Rod.