International Writers Magazine - Our Tenth Year: Dating Log 09
to know if you fancied going for a coffee and then maybe have sex
after. As she pressed the delete button Susan sighed. The
dating agency was not living up to its promise of finding classy
people for classy players.
So far she had
had a most unnerving lunch with a man whose squint was so pronounced
that the people sat at the next table in the cramped café kept
answering his questions and an interminable dinner with a Star
Trek fan who offered to get her a Lieutenant Ahura costume in
time for the next convention in Bradford.
It had perhaps been a mistake to put looks not important, enthusiasm
for life is, on her application form. But shed meant it.
At the time. It was just turning out that other peoples life enthusiasms
were not her own.
Colin was in agony.
Real alpha plus agony. He had been rehearsing the nonchalant non-committal
line all morning. Wanted to know if you fancied going for a coffee
and then maybe having a walk along the river afterwards? Hed
hoped for sex of course, he always hoped for sex afterwards but it was
probably bad form to mention that in a first phone call. Hed liked
the sound of her too. Looks not important, enthusiasm for life
is. He had planned to be soo enthusiastic about everything they
would see on the walk from the ducks to the dog turds. Well possibly
not the dog turds. And now hed blown it. Big time. He knew he
should probably ring again very quickly and say
say what? I
was only joking about the sex bit, or I meant walk, not
sex. But he couldnt bring himself to do it. Besides now
he was obliged to mention sex in the message he dreaded to think what
might actually come out of his mouth when faced with the started
so you must finish horror of the answer machine. Or the real person.
Dear God what if she answered in person? Much as he would have wished
it otherwise he knew it was beyond his capabilities to resolve the situation.
Regretfully she would have to be filed in his ever growing ones
that got away file.
Susan began to
realise that if she were ever to get any kind of return on the obscenely
high investment she had placed in Classy Players she would
have to be more pro-active. The thought filled her with horror. She
had an absolute dread of answer-machines and had been content so far
to allow the men to make the running. But the ones she had earmarked
as possible hadnt phoned and the ones that really belonged in
her only if Im really desperate file had. She looked
again at the sheaf of handpicked classy suitors the agency
had given her. Film director Craig looked gorgeous. Rugged, rich and
ravishing he was as much out of her reach as the vast mountains he purported
to climb in his spare time. Then there was stockbroker Andy who promised
the lady of his dreams a get away from it all romance on
his own private yacht, deals permitting. Or there was Colin. He had
hovered over her only if Im really desperate pile
but something about his crooked and, it had to be said, rather manic
smile had stayed her hand. Plus he was a teacher. She understood about
teachers. She understood only too well about teachers and had vowed
not to go hunting in her own backyard. But. It meant they had something
in common. It meant when the conversation dried up, which it inevitably
would, she could always ask his opinion on the latest government initiative
for keystage three pupils. Or she could just say yes to the Star Trek
convention and face the final frontier. Grimly she reached for the phone.
Colin pressed play
again. And again. It still sounded just as odd. Bradford would
be wonderful and the Lieutenant Ahura costume sounds great, thank you.
Just hope Ive got the legs for it. Ha ha. I understand that resistance
is futile so perhaps you could give me a call on 0*** 231468.
Live long and prosper. Over and out. He speculated as
to the kind of woman that would have left such a message. Weird, most
certainly but probably with an Amazonian body that looked really hot
in uniform. Particularly that kind of uniform. Resistance is futile
He began to wonder if he had been wasting his time on coffee and walks
with enthusiastic teachers. Perhaps it was time for him to boldly go
where he had never been before.
How could she have
been so stupid? It had taken every last scrap of courage for her to
leave that ridiculous Star Trek message and now it transpired that she
had dialled the wrong number. Worse still it had put her in contact
with an even bigger Trekite or whatever they were called. In what must
have qualified as one of the weirdest phone calls she had ever had she
found herself agreeing to meet Captain Kirk the Second for
coffee in Starbucks (well it had to be really didnt it?) to discuss
their mutual obsession with all things connected with the Captains
log. This really was the final frontier. The only good thing about it
was that it didnt involve a trip to Bradford. Nor the need to
dress up in Ahura gear although the Captain had seemed a little disappointed
when she said she would save that for a later date.
It had been a mistake to get there fifteen minutes early. Colin was
beginning to detect a definite froideur between himself and the longer-legged
female customers. His opening gambit of Lieutenant Ahura, I presume,
had not gone down too well with some and his fallback introduction of
Hi, Im Captain Kirk, had not fared much better with
He ordered himself another double espresso ignoring the smug baristas
offer to beam it up for him and slumped down into the comparative anonymity
of the battered leather armchair opposite the entrance. She was now
fifteen minutes late. A total wait of thirty minutes that had just added
thirty years to his life.
She had seen him come in of course. Something about his slightly maniacal
grin had seemed vaguely familiar. She had arrived half an hour early
in order to read as much as she could of her newly acquired Star
Trek Bumper Compendium before he arrived. He had approached most
of the women in the café but had not come near her. She knew
she should not have sat herself on one of those ridiculously high stools.
Measuring in at only a little over five feet she had almost needed crampons
to get up there. Shed thought, however, that once up there he
would be unable to tell quite how short she was and that was no bad
thing. Except now that it was pretty obvious that he was uninterested
in her it was going to be hard to slip away without drawing attention
to herself. Gingerly she began her descent.
Deep in his moribundity it took Colin a few moments to realise that
the clattering sound was the result of the petite woman in the corner
falling off her stool. Glad of the distraction he went to help her.
Her possessions had spilled out all over the floor. Star Trek
Bumper Compendium stood out as a rather surprising item for a
woman to have in her handbag. He reached his hand out to her. Youre
Lieutenant Ahura? he said incredulously. The barista cheered.
Yep. Its life Jim, but not as we know it.It
had taken most of that long walk along the river to see the funny side
of it all. But he had been so enthusiastic about
from the ducks to the dog turds so when he suggested coffee and maybe
sex the following week she found herself agreeing that on the whole
resistance would be futile.
© Mary Colvin
mary at colvinfamily.co.uk
Mary is studying
for her MA in Creative Writing at the University of Portsmouth
Fiction in Dreamscapes
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