Runaway Mother chapter 17
‘What time is he picking you up?’ Zach asks watching my excitement build with every minute.
‘Six!’ I say and look at my watch, I get butterflies knowing that in approximately three minutes time I will be in a car, alone, with my dream guy!
‘You look stunning, doesn’t she Ethan?’
‘Like a princess!’ the little voice says making my heart flutter.
I go down to his level and give him a big hug. ‘Thank you buddy!’ I smile at him and gently brush the back of my hand against his cheek.
Ethan wraps his arms around me and whispers, ‘when will you be home?’
‘I’ll be home for breakfast!’ I whisper back. I can see Zach smile out of the corner of my eye.
‘I hear a car!’ Zach says and opens the front door. ‘It’s him,’ he announces. ‘I can see the appeal!’ When Zach smiles and see’s that Ethan won’t let go, he says, ‘why don’t you go upstairs and see what ducky left on your bed!’ Ethan looks up at him and smiles. We rub noses and he runs upstairs. ‘I had a feeling this might happen, so I went into the charity shop today and got him a few cars that were going for a quarter each!’
‘Thank you,’ I say and make a fast exit.
I see Chad standing there, holding the car door open for me. I walk up to him and he says ‘man do you look beautiful!’ I blush and notice how handsome he looks in a dinner jacket. He closes the door once I’m seated, and runs around the front of the car and gets in himself. ‘You really do look stunning Mary!’ he says again.
‘You don’t half look bad yourself!’ I answer and gently takes my hand in his and kisses it.
My whole body begins to tingle and electricity radiates through my blood at the feel of his touch. This is the closest I’ve ever been to a guy before. When you are trying to keep up with being a straight A student, you miss a lot of opportunities to be around boys. I can honestly say that this is my first date! I’m not ashamed or embarrassed, I knew it would come someday, but now that it’s here, I’m nervous!
‘Are you ready to try my signature dish?’ Chad smiles at me, a glint in his eye, washing the nerves away.
‘I can’t wait!’ I respond.
When we pull into the driveway of the red brick semi detached house, I’m pleasantly surprised that my assumption Chad comes from money is squashed. He insists on helping me out of the car and its Chads mother who opens the door to greet us.
‘Why hello there,’ she says, ‘you must be Mary!’ she shakes my hand and invites me into her beautiful home. ‘Chad can’t stop talking about you!’ she says.
I laugh as Chad says ‘Mom!’ through gritted teeth with eyes as wide as saucers.
She rolls her eyes smiling, ‘I’m Charlotte sweetie,’ she introduces herself. ‘And of course you know Bob!’ I nod, ‘he’s working tonight which means more of Chads delicious stroganoff for us!’
‘Oh calm yourself child, my favourite soap has a feature length ending of a magnificent storyline that starts at seven, so I’ll be out of your hair all night!’ she smiles and looks me up and down…’I can see why he’s mad about you!’ she says and brushes the back of her hand against Chads cheek.
I almost let slip that I do the same to Ethan, but something holds me back.
‘There’s wine there,’ she looks in my direction. ‘I know your only eighteen but…’
‘…I’m sixteen!’ I correct her politely.
‘Well then erase what I just said and enjoy some beautiful flavoured water or a soft drink or something!’ She looks at Chad with a smile. ‘Well,’ she brushes something off the shoulder of his dinner jacket, ‘would you mind just letting me know when to come out for the culinary delights?’
‘Of course mom!’ Chad rolls his eyes.
‘Otherwise, pretend I’m not here!’ she nods and smiles, ‘oh and if you hear me shouting its at the tv! The episode is supposed to be explosive!’ she rubs her hands together.
‘Thanks mom!’ Chad says and apologises for the inconvenience.
‘You should meet my mother…’ I stop myself before saying anything further. I was about to tell him that she ran away to be with an ex-convict in New Mexico and now we can’t find her!
Chad is such a gentleman. When we walk into the kitchen there was a table for two set up with some roses in a vase and another packaged up for me. I can’t help but put my hand to my chest! He has a two-litre bottle of Fanta in a wine cooling jug and pushes my chair in as I sit at the beautifully set table.
‘I just have to make the rice!’ he says and turns his attention to the cooker as I drink in the room. The vast kitchen is obviously an extension that was added to the house recently. The large white floor tiles have a magnificent quartz like design to them. The island which is in the middle of the kitchen area has four bar stools standing at it and the cupboards are a beautiful white with no handles in sight. I watch as Chad takes out a fork and notice that the drawer has a soft closing mechanism to it. The dining room table is about the only thing in the area that looks out of place. It’s a big wooden table with eight exquisitely refurbished chairs. It must be a family heir loom.
‘Almost ready!’ Chad shouts over.
‘Your kitchen is amazing!’ I tell him.
‘We only got it redone about six months ago!’ he says while spooning the rice into a dish. ‘You wouldn’t have wanted to have seen the state of the other one!’ he places the rice in front of me and then runs back to the stove for the main event, and then back again for the garlic bread. ‘A good stroganoff always has to have garlic bread!’ he offers and sits opposite me. ‘Excuse me for one second!’ he puts up his index finger and shouts, ‘MOM! IT’S READY!’ cupping his hands around his mouth.
I let out a giggle. ‘We do the exact same in our house!’ I tell him and begin to blush.
‘Did I hear myself being summoned to the kitchen?’ Charlotte asks as she enters looking as though she’s ready for bed.
‘Mom!’ Chad says looking embarrassed. ‘Did you really just put on your pyjamas at 6:45 in the evening?’
‘Well I have to be comfortable,’ she responds, ‘they did say it was going to be two hours of revelations!’
‘Ok mom, why don’t you take a plate and go in and watch your soap!’
‘Thank you son,’ she says licking her lips. ‘This looks and smells amazing! I’m going to pile my plate high so that I don’t need to disturb you again!’
‘Please do!’ Chad says with his tongue in his cheek. ‘Ok mom, leave some for us as well!’ he says and gets up to physically turn her away from the food and towards the living room.
He looks back at me and I’m laughing silently. He rolls his eyes and says, ‘mothers hey, who’d have em?’
I bite my tongue and instead of saying that all I want is to find mine, Chad takes my plate and puts rice on first followed by stroganoff.
‘It smells amazing!’ I say, ‘your mom isn’t wrong!’
‘I have to apologise to you about her it’s just…’
‘…she’s just being your mom!’ I tell him and he beams at me as he places a dish he had put his heart and soul into all day, trying to make it perfect, in front of me. I think he succeeded! I take one bite and I’m in heaven.
‘I’m just going to put the left overs in the oven so they won’t get cold! If you’re anything like me you’ll want more. He says as he returns to the table.
‘This is beautiful! Compliments to the chef!’
‘Oh,’ he makes a wrist movement, as if swatting away a fly, trying to convey the meal to be nothing.
‘I’m sorry,’ Chad says with a furrowed brow, ‘I don’t believe I offered you a beverage!’
I smile at him. ‘I noticed there was Fanta in a wine cooler alright!’
‘Did you now?’ Chad pours some into a wine goblet and we cheers to a wonderful night!
As it turns out, Chad and me have a lot in common! We both work and go to school. I found out that he is in the other high school across town!
‘So,’ he says picking up a piece of garlic bread. ‘What would you be doing if you weren’t here?’
‘My friend, anna, is throwing another one of her signature parties…so I guess I’d be there.’
‘I’d never had put you down as a party goer!’
‘I’m not to be honest.’ I take a deep breath ‘I got blotto on vodka once! I saved up for weeks to get a wino to buy it for me, but I just couldn’t get over throwing money at a drink that you’re going to vomit back up a few hours later!’
Chad looks at me and smiles. ‘I was actually invited to that same party!’ he says adding ‘I don’t drink either!’
‘Yup!’ he nods, ‘between school and work, I’m pretty busy! At least that’s what I tell my friends!’
I look at him confused.
‘I told you the truth because someday, hopefully not too far away, you might like to be more than friends?’
I nod my head and smile! ‘Let’s cheers to being more than friends!’
‘Really?’ he asks with a glint in his eye.
‘Yea,’ I smile, ‘I’ve been wanting to be, ‘more than friends’ since the day I met you!’ I use air quotes so he knows I’m serious.
‘So let me get this straight!’ he sits up and takes a sup of Fanta. ‘Both of us wanted more than a friendship from the moment we met?’
‘I can’t speak for you, but hell yea from me!’
He smiles, ‘um since we’re officially ‘more than just friends’ I was wondering, only if you’re interested, if you might like to join me tomorrow? I’m going to the aquarium!’ He looks at me as I smile liking where he’s going with this, ‘they have an exhibition on at the minute all about the orca whales!’
I nod my head emphatically and he beams back at me.
‘That’s how a Saturday should be spent!’ I offer, ‘with a person you have an overwhelming crush on, in a place other than a party!’
‘Oh shit, sorry, did you have plans?’
‘I do now!’ I giggle.
‘Would you like more stroganoff?’ he asks.
‘I will if you will!’ I answer, hearing his mom gasp loudly in the other room.
‘Some revelation must have been uncovered!’ he smiles.
We sit there and talk for hours, the conversation never lacking.
As he insists on holding the car door open for me, I get in and watch as he runs around the front of the car again.
‘Can I ask you something?’ he says kissing my hand like he did when he picked me up.
‘Sure!’ I shrug my shoulders with nothing to lose.
‘Can I kiss you?’
I smile back and nod. ‘Wow,’ I think to myself, ‘my first kiss!’ I just pray I do it right.
He leans towards me and I meet him half way. As he gently places his mouth on mine and I can feel his tongue gently touch my lips, teasing me. I feel fireworks and eventually he pulls away. I keep my eyes closed to savour the moment for a few seconds afterwards.
‘That was perfection!’ I say out loud, not meaning to say anything!
‘Perfection indeed!’ he winks at me and after he backs out of the driveway and puts the car in gear, he takes my hand in his and holds it the whole way home.
I turn the key in the front door gently, thinking Zach would be in bed. To my surprise he’s in the sitting room watching basketball.
‘Well?’ he asks expectantly as I lean against the door frame, ‘how did it go?’
I walk into the room and flop onto the couch, a smile on my face from ear to ear!
‘I’m delighted for you Mare!’ he says.
‘Would you be ok with Ethan if I go out with Chad to the aquarium tomorrow afternoon?’
Zach sits up, the cogs in his mind turning. ‘Well, I’ve promised the guys I’d go out with them!’ he says and looks at me. ‘But those are plans that can easily be changed!’ he adds.
I appreciate Zach’s compassion and understanding.
‘Did you kiss him?’ he asks grinning like a Cheshire cat.
With that, I make my way up to bed. I check in on Ethan on the way, and touch my lips with my fingers smiling. I close the door gently and get into my pyjamas.
I want to bottle the night into a small vial so that I can replay it over in my mind, but as I’m not in Hogwarts, I decide to recount it in my diary instead.
I can’t stop smiling, and record every little detail down to the smell of his cologne onto the page. For once, something is going right!