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Chapter One and Two of LOVE GAMES here

Love Games
Mark Cunliffe

Chapters Three

Hopemouth, 1974 All About Wendy

Whilst Guy Block was despairing of the human condition, well, mainly his own, in the bathroom, Wendy Lampkin was out in the local village pub The Lamb and Flag with her new friend, Martin Jessup. She was rather pleased with herself to be making new friends and giving a good impression in these early stages of University life.

Already she had met Rain and Martin and of course Dr Block. Martin seemed nice, very friendly, but a trifle stiff and slightly dull. They had started the night quite well, he was pointing out the local characters in the bar, like Prof West of Sociology who Martin claimed many on campus thought to be a Russian Mole.
"No really?" asked Wendy incredulously
"Well he’s very left wing, a true Marxist, but unless the landlord here is his contact then I think it unlikely, he never goes anywhere else" Martin joked.
But as the night moved on, it, like the now drunken Prof West started to droop and grow heavy. Martin had clearly run out of things to say and he didn’t seem particularly comfortable around women. As Wendy sat twiddling her hair and catching sneaky glances at the ornate clock on the wall behind the bar, Martin was blowing into his bottle and attempting to find it all rather amusing…again.

Please, Please, Please say something to me Martin, let’s make a move or something, I’m dying of boredom here. Hang on…he’s about to say something…

Martin slowly and firmly put his bottle down and adjusted his spectacles. "So…" he began, before checking his watch, patting down the left hand side of his hair and clearing his throat. "So" he repeated, Wendy now in agony waiting to see what nugget of information, what gesture he was about to offer, "You’re from Wigan you say?"

Humph! Brilliant. The art of conversation is alive and well. Oh no, is he, he is, is he looking at me like the others do? Oh good grief they can’t all want me!

Wendy swallowed deeply and replied, "That’s right" with an attempt at a polite smile
"That must be fascinating" Martin said
"Must it?" Wendy asked. "Why?"
"Well I mean to say, aah, isn’t it?"
"Um no not really. Martin, do you even know where Wigan is?"
"I um, well, no I can’t say I do. I was brought up in Bristol and have only left it once and that was to study here"

Finally last orders were called and Wendy could make her escape. Martin escorted her out into the pub car park for his motor just as Prof West fell off his barstool.

Wendy was just clicking her seatbelt into place when Martin, climbing into the drivers seat suggested a drive up to the river.
"It’s so nice up there this time of night" he said
Wendy was hardly enamoured by the idea, but agreed, as she didn’t want to hurt his feelings. After all he had been kind enough to take her out for the night and hadn’t let her pay for a thing, it would be remiss of her to turn him down flat now she thought.

The car pulled in by the front of the river. In the distance you could hear some ducks quack as they waddled off for the night. A full moon was shining down on them and the city lights dipped on and off over the hills beyond.
"Ooh you were right, it is lovely here isn’t it?" Wendy said.
Martin cleared his throat once more, Wendy was beginning to worry if the boy was in need of a packet of Tunes he had coughed so much that evening.
"Wendy um, I must ask you about this afternoon?" he managed to say.
"What about it?" Wendy asked uncertain.
"You were out with Dr Block in that cafeteria"
"That’s right, we’d been to see Women In Love at the pictures, have you seen it Martin? It’s good you know, a bit odd I thought but…"
"Oh my, you were at the cinema with him? Wendy the man is an animal, surely you know this?" Martin stammered, his face growing red and his breath was steaming up the windows rather rapidly.
"Martin what? Are you ok luv?" Wendy asked a little panicked
"It’s you who should be asked if you are ok, Wendy, a delicate little flower such as yourself should not be mixing and cavorting with the likes of Guy Block!"
"What? Hang on a minute sunshine..."
"Honestly Wendy the man is sex mad, sex mad! He’s like some hippy Leslie Phillips! He’ll try and have his wicked way with you Wendy you mark my words, don’t you see Wendy he’s evil, sleazy and you, you’re too good for him. Oh Wendy!"

Oh bloody hell

Martin lunged at Wendy, with his mouth open wide in what she presumed and feared was to be an attempt at a kiss, but if there were any medical people passing, they would assume it was the correct lip formation for mouth to mouth. Luckily Wendy had had to fend of people back home before now and brought her bag up to clout Martin on the side of the head. He quickly recoiled back, hitting the driver’s side window with a thud.
"Martin what are you doing?!" she demanded
"Oh that’s it is it?" he said rubbing the side of his head as his eyes bulged out at her. No more was he looking at her like the other boy’s did. Wendy was unfamiliar with this look and she hoped it wasn’t one she would see often.
"I see what it is" he spat, "You want to be his plaything don’t you. Ach women you’re all the same, always falling for the wrong man, you seem to want to be mistreated, want to be hurt, well good luck to you Miss Lampkin, good luck if you can’t see a good man standing, well sitting, in front of you!" He fumed.
"What are you on about?" was all Wendy could manage in reply.
"Every girl I meet, they’re all like you, they don’t want to know me, they look at me as if I’m subhuman. Ok so I might not have Guy Block’s intellect, his charm, his fancy clothes or even his bloody beard! It’s not my fault I’m almost twenty and still only shave once a week! But I tell you what I do have, a good heart and a love for women! But do you…you…tarts… yes tarts! Do you want it? No!"
"Martin calm down!" Wendy shouted forcibly causing Martin to shrink into silence and his seat. He sat there catching his breath;

Wendy waited a few seconds before continuing. "Right, better? Good. First of all, I am not interested in you right? Not that way, you’re right, but when I saw you this afternoon I thought what a sweet and kind gesture it was for you to make inviting me out tonight, I thought I’d made a friend…"
"And you had made a-" Martin began but was cut down with a swift "Aah!" from Wendy to silence him as if he were naughty schoolboy.
"And tonight was nice, ok? It wasn’t exactly a swinging party now was it, but it was nice to think I’d made a friend. Now though, now you go off ranting and raving, its clear that you don’t even like me! And you think that me and Dr Block, my tutor are having some kind of…." She shuddered, Wendy could hardly believe someone would think that of her, "Well, let me tell you, yes, Dr Block is very nice, yes he is charming, attractive and clever, really clever, but you know why he probably has success with women and you don’t? Because it looks to me like Guy actually likes women, wants to be with them and is keen to hear what they have to say. You, you just seem to hate them because they don’t love you, have you ever thought why they don’t love you? It’s not because you can’t grow a daft beard! It’s because you simply can’t be a good man with all that bile and hatred inside of you! And finally how dare you call me a tart! I’m a virgin just like you!" She sucked in a deep breath before asking in a relatively calm tone "Now could you please take me home?"
Martin silently and meekly obeyed.

The following morning Guy Block strode through the highly polished and clinical smelling corridors of Hopemouth in a large collared striped shirt, which reached out to his narrow shoulders that were adorned in a greeny blue velvet jacket. A large silk scarf hung loosely down to his cowboy belted waist, tied with a flourish at his open neck. He cut a vibrant figure amongst the usual tweedy pot bellied comb overed fellow lecturers and made many a head turn, he was used to this, as being the youngest staff member he was generally considered to be rather groovy. However what made many heads turn that day was the now clean-shaven chin he sported. He smiled and nodded and winked his way through colleagues and young students, occasionally running a hand through his straggly hair for effect and tossing it back with a jerk of his head and a sniff of his nose. Occasionally he found himself saying "Oh the beard? Just fancied a change and got rid" if he said it often enough he hoped he would believe it himself rather than admit that one new girl made him reconsider his facial fluff.

He strode hurriedly into the lecture room with a brisk "Good morning" to the assembled students, so hurriedly in fact that he stubbed his toes on the lectern. Placing his canvas holdall on the floor and behind the lectern, he used that moment to let out a deep breath and a hushed ‘ouch’ before bobbing his head back up and taking in the group proper for the first time. He could see an open mouthed Wendy four rows up and stroked his fresh chin absently. "Right let’s begin shall we?" he commenced.

He’s shaved his beard off…was that because of me? Oh dear. Mind you he does look better for it.

"'Randy Cock Block’s’ took the crappy Noel Edmonds beard off!" said a man behind Wendy.
"Yeah, he must be trying to impress someone," sniggered another, causing Wendy’s face to redden, but secretly a little smile played across her lips as she opened her exercise book and began to doodle flowers and hearts.

The lecture over, the many students started packing and putting their coats on and heading for the door. Guy was filling his holdall back up and with a nod of the head upwards said; "Wendy, could you stay behind please" Wendy’s heart skipped and she was pleased that he had asked to see her, the same students who sniggered before were heard saying, "That’s the reason then" as they shuffled out from the row of seats and off into the leaving throng.

Wendy made her way over to the podium. "I like the new look" she said as she drew level with Block.
"Hmm? Oh sans beard? Yes well I thought time ripe for a change and well, you said it didn’t do much for me"
"Oh please I’d hate to think you took it off just on my say so"
"No think nothing of it, it was the right thing to do" Guy soothed, arms up, "Anyway um, the thing is I was kinda wondering if you would…"

Go on… ask me out…please

"…Like to come for a spin into town, see the art gallery?" Guy finished
"Yes, yes I would" Wendy said happily
"You’re not planning to go anywhere with Martin Jessup?" Guy tested the water
"Um no, I don’t think so, last night didn’t go very well I’m afraid" she said looking to the floor.

Yes! Get in, 1 nil to Block! Back to the nursery with you Jessup!

"Good, I mean God, I mean oh dear, I’m sorry" Guy stammered.
"That’s ok" Wendy replied looking at Guy full on, he was lovely. "Shall we go then?"
"Indeed" said Guy and as Wendy turned to the door he mouthed a quick ‘thank you’ to the ceiling for God above.

The afternoon at the art gallery was very nice. Guy had deliberately taken her to an exhibition of erotic art, paintings and statues celebrating sex and the male and female form in the hope to get the juices flowing. Wendy walked through each exhibit amazed and full of questions that Guy was only too happy to answer. As the afternoon wore on, Wendy stood in the spacious white rooms looking at ever increasing eye- catching paintings. As she looked at one in particular, the sun chose that moment to shine hazily through the slatted windows casting a marvellous light across her beautiful frame. Guy was besotted and did not want to waste this brief wondrous visage that palled all the art works around him; he slowly strode towards her taking in the image and savouring it to his memory banks whilst quoting what immediately came into his head;
"She was a phantom of delight
When first she gleamed upon my sight,
A lovely apparition, sent
To be a moment’s ornament."
Wendy had immediately lost interest in the painting she was expecting as she heard Guy approach with those words. As he concluded the passage he was by her side, as she stood impressed and open mouthed, "That’s you" he announced softly.
"Why thank you Dr Block, Guy, that was lovely" she said genuinely flattered.
"Wordsworth" he explained, "Seeing you here with this…beautiful… light trickling in, it just sprung into the forefront of my mind" he said waving his arm as if to explain and almost knocking a sculpture off its stand in the process.

An hour later they were sat in a local pub, Guy had nipped over to the jukebox and put on The Rolling Stones’ Ruby Tuesday before returning from the bar to their table with a pint for him and a double vodka and orange for Wendy, though she had in fact only asked for a single.
"I like this song" said Wendy swaying her head in time to the rhythm.
"Yes me too, I think Jagger is a wonderful performer, very sexual, very clever too, he’s a hero of mine" Guy replied inching colder to her. "You know, this song could be about you"
Wendy chuckled "Give over"
"No, no it’s true, no one could ever hang a name on you, or a preconception, you are truly, truly something special"

Oh my God I’m going bright red, I must look like a beetroot and he’s sat so close to me, I feel really funny

Wendy started to say something but was immediately stopped by Guy "Look Wendy, I’m going to be very honest and very open and adult here, because I respect you as a person who has a huge intellect and as a modern girl ok?"
Wendy gulped but nodded her head to say yes all the same
"I don’t want you to speak just now, because when you do I see your lips moving and all I want to do is caress them with my own, I want to kiss you Wendy, I want to kiss you now"
Wendy put down her glass and turned to face Guy. She was about to be very brave.
"Go on then"
And that was it their first kiss and the music, the table, the drinks, the other customers, the entire pub faded out.

A few weeks later and pretty much the same pattern occurred each day after a lecture. Guy would drive Wendy off somewhere they would discuss literature; art; film; music etc and then they would kiss as passionately as that first time. However, much to Guy’s chagrin, this was as far as he would get. Wendy was still desperately clinging on to her virginity. It had to be the longest courtship and most fruitless Guy had ever undertaken. In short, he was not used to this. Yes he wanted her but he wanted her right now

The thing with women right, is they only want one thing, just like we do, the trouble is we tell em what the one thing we want is, they’ll never tell us what the one thing they want is!

I do like him, but I dunno, I feel so guilty, he’s meant to be my teacher, I’m his student, but well we can’t hide our feelings. He wants the sex, I know he does, but I can’t, not yet. I have to feel sure, certain.

One morning Guy didn’t turn up to lecture, handing the reins to the older Prof Rickman, a thirty five year old serious looking man, with a helmet of brown wavy long hair with a severe parting, he was a big thing in academe, having written various books on several authors. He was a highly prominent figure in the English faculty, bigger and certainly more established than Guy and was talked of as being the most important person in Hopemouth, with a lot of hangers on following his every step. His parties were said to be legendary too. Concerned for Guy, Wendy waited until all the students had left to ask Prof Rickman if he was ok
The Prof looked down at Wendy, "Dr Block is indisposed, I think he’s a little unwell. I’m not altogether sure. I say, will you be attending my party on Friday? I’d love you to come, we need as many pretty little things as we can get" he asked in a way that made Wendy feel a little uncertain. There was something of ‘the look’ about him, but Wendy was beginning to fear paranoia on that score.
"I’m not sure, I might" she answered before hurrying off out into the grounds. She had decided to go to Guy’s digs and see if he was ok.
It was not a good decision.
She knocked on the door only to find the door being opened by a near naked girl of about her own age.
"I-I" was all she could manage to say
Guy appeared behind the girl wrapped in a towel, his face fell.
"Bollocks" he succinctly put it.
Wendy ran and ran and never turned back to Guy’s cries of her name.

Chapter Four
Hopemouth, 1974

Friday night came and Wendy and Rain were getting ready for the party at Prof Rickman’s. Wendy had evaded Guy Block all week and really did not want to know what he was doing, if he was going to the party, if he wanted to see her, if he was with that floozy.
She doesn’t care.
She’s almost certain she doesn’t care.
She thinks.
She stepped over to the full-length mirror in Rain’s flat and looked at herself. She was wearing a wonderful salmon coloured dress and she should be feeling divine, but she didn’t, she felt uncertain. Rain came up to her and squeezed her shoulder "Hey cheer up, you look really pretty"
"Really?" Wendy asked
"Really kid" Rain replied, who seemed to believe in dressing down for parties, wearing as she was denim dungarees and a black roll neck with badges of T-Rex, Led Zeppelin and Elton John adorning the straps that hung precariously to her ample frame.

There was a knock at the door. Rain went to answer it; it was Martin, who was to be their lift to Prof Rickman’s house for the night. Martin and Wendy had patched it up a little after their disastrous night out. She had decided to give him the benefit of the doubt as being a little out of his depth and inexperienced when it comes to girls and he in turn had shown surprising care and attention to her recent heartbreak over Guy and had seemed to take the harsh but honest words she said to him that night on board.

As the trio went across the grounds to Martin’s car, Wendy pulled up a little to thank Martin for the lift.
"Oh that’s ok, anything for the ladies. Are you ok now, with Dr Block I mean?" he enquired.
"Haven’t spoken to him, haven’t seen him. I’m sorry Martin, you tried to warn me and I just went off like a rocket"
"Not at all, we none of us can help who we fall for"
"That’s very profound that is" said Wendy looking at him in a new light
"If you sit on the touchlines for long enough, you tend to know more about the players and the game than if you’d actually play" said Martin
Wendy stepped back a little and said, "Well Martin, I may have misjudged you, I’m sorry"
"No you didn’t I was being an idiot. I just saw a pretty girl and thought, this time she has to like me as much as I like her. But I have changed, I took a few tips off you and I’m very grateful"
And with that he took up his pace a little to reach the car and open the doors.
"Lets Pa-r-t-y!" yelled Rain as she leapt in the front seat lighting a cigarette at the same time, with a "Yee ha!" as an added bonus to her original cry once seated, just in case anyone forgot she was from the United States.

The car scrunched to a halt on the gravel drive of the grounds of Prof Rickman’s impressive house. Already there were several cars lined up and a few guests were stepping up into the house of mingling on the driveway. Wendy exited the car slack jawed with wonder. "Wow this is his house?" she asked
"Oh yes" Martin replied, "He’s one of the finest young academics in the country, this was probably paid for by his writing, he’s published with Prentiss Hammond, big money"
"Just think, Guy could have one of these in a few years" said Wendy eyes intent on the four-floor mansion house.
Rain and Martin looked on at her, but this was lost on the overawed Wendy.
"Don’t forget Marty that Prof Rickman’s family have money, chances are this is how he gets to live in such a palace. And honey, can you really see old ‘Stumbling Block’ in one of these? Sure as hell I can’t" Rain said despondently and walked on ahead to go inside.

In the house was an even more remarkable site. The rooms were filled with people, lecturers, students, artists and the like. Wendy thought she saw Germaine Greer a couple of times, and went to tell Rain who had been raving on about her and her book ‘The Female something’, Wendy could never remember or understand the title, but Rain seemed preoccupied eating a selection of little brown cakes laid out on a table by the high window.
Not put out, Wendy continued her exploration of the house. As the sounds of assorted records from Jefferson Airplane, Joni Mitchell and even Free at one point, blared out she spied lecturers leaning on doorjambs discussing Harold Wilson and Edward Heath, whilst students sat on the floor arguing about Vietnam and Nixon. She was about to turn back and look for Martin when Prof Rickman appeared in front of her.
"Ah so you did come? Excellent, so glad you could make it" he said
"Oh yes its very nice, thank you" said Wendy, impressed that a man like Prof Rickman seemed genuinely pleased that a first year student had agreed to come along to his gathering.
"Word of warning though, your Dr Block is around" he said leaning in, his hot breath at her ear and his brandy glassed hand reaching out to hold her shoulder.
"My…my Dr Block?"

God how does he know?

"I’m sorry my dear, but word travels pretty fast at Hopemouth." He answered as if reading her mind. "Guy’s all right really, just has difficulty keeping it in his chaps that all. Still, if you want him steered clear?" he asked.
"That’s quite all right, excuse me" said Wendy and she hurried off down the hallway feeling confused and bothered as small warm wet tears brimmed at her eyes.

Damn, Damn, Damn! The whole University, the entire University knows! What will people think of me? I’m a good girl, we didn’t even, we didn’t even…but they won’t believe that, all sorts of tales will be spreading. What will Mum and Dad think?

She heard the crunch of gravel on her feet and realised she had made it outside. She looked down for confirmation and when she looked back up again, she saw him.
Guy Block.

Oh great. There he is, with that stupid little boyish smile and his long hair and…what does he want?

"Um hi" Guy said
"Hallo" Wendy said, scrunching her eyes because of the late evening sun and not, most definitely not, because she had been a little tearful. She shifted about and scratched the back of her right leg with her left foot.
"I didn’t think-"
"-I’d be here? Place like this too good for me?" Wendy snapped
"Jesus, not that, not that old card" Guy sighed hands on hip
"Where is she?" Wendy asked defiantly
"Who? Oh um her, um I don’t…know" Guy drawled.
"Oh lost her already?" Wendy laughed
"Wendy, Wendy Wend darling, it wasn’t like that, look um, lets sit down yah?"
He took her elbow and made to move to the steps up to the house, but Wendy swiftly pulled away and made her on way to the steps, before turning full on to face him, pouting she lifted up her dress and slumped down onto the steps, chin in hand.
Guy slowly walked over and sat next to her
"Thing is, thing is Wend, I like you. There said it. But I like sex too, and well, it wasn’t in the offing really now was it? Not at that time, so I-I looked elsewhere. I am sorry darling, really I am"
"Sorry you slept with her?"
"No! Sorry I got caught!" said Guy, probably unwisely. "Look, here’s the thing, I needed sex, that’s all, like a man may need a cigarette or something you know? So I went and got it. But I want you. I mean that Wendy, I want you. So much"
Wendy sat and pondered this for a while. "And what if I don’t want you not now? What If you’ve blown your chance?"
Guy blew out his lips and scratched the back of his head, before looking up into the horizon, as Wendy was doing, to answer; "Well, if I have, then I have. I guess. But I’ll be incredibly, incredibly… depressed … and … upset"
Wendy picked up a stone and threw it. She turned to Guy; "I’m a virgin Guy. You need to respect that. I can’t just give that up to anyone, it’s important to me"
"I know ah I know, of course but in this day and age Wendy…"
"I’m not going on the pill. That’s for Rain and Germaine whatever her name is in there! And you? Would you, well would you have …worn…anything?" Wendy was finding this tough; she could feel her cheeks burning as the words limped out from her mouth.
Guy snorted a laugh "Oh Wendy, the days when the sheath are fashionable are now long gone…we’re living in the nineteen seventies!"
"Well, maybe the days when you are fashionable are long gone too" said Wendy and with a nod of her head she got up and went back to the party, leaving Guy alone, feeling oddly crestfallen. Oddly for it was the first time ever he felt this way about a girl and more specifically the fact he appeared to have lost her. He was so bereft and uncertain he couldn’t even manage to form the customary word that is ‘bollocks’.

On entering the house, Wendy found Rain, slumped by the table of cakes and proceeded to eat a couple herself.
"Hey girl?" said Rain a little startled by her sudden appearance.
" I need a chocolate boost. I need cheering up" Wendy said determined through mouthfuls. "Hmm who makes these?" even when the worse comes to the worse, a woman is still capable of focusing in on the trivial.
" ‘Anarchic Anna’ over there" Rain replied, pointing out a willowy beautiful figure holding court over six or seven people, "She’s a legend on campus, so clever, so posh, illegitimate kid of some kinda Earl or something, she came here with the first intake in the late 60s, then turned on tuned in dropped out and hangs round here ever since"

For a moment, across the room, Wendy and Anna’s eyes met and evaluated each other instantly like a pair of super computers, billion dollar brains. They both were blonde, slim and classically beautiful and clearly both could have people enthralled. But Wendy sensed a difference; weariness belittled Anna’s eyes, as if she was at the point of no return, like she had enjoyed the enthralling once, unlike her, but now grew tired keeping up appearances. For Anna, she saw in Wendy a youthful vibrancy and spirit and hoped it would remain pure.
"Oh well…as long as she’s happy" Wendy said, her mouth dropping lower and lower down as she realised she wasn’t at all happy.
"What gives?" asked Rain standing up
"Guy" Wendy said and hated herself for feeling the tears flood her eyes again.
"Come on lady" said Rain and taking her hand they made their way to an empty room full of guests coats.
"He’s here?" asked Rain once inside the dark little room.
"Mmm yeah" Wendy said sobbingly
"Well I hope you told him where to go. Wendy dear he ain’t worth Jack and he’s a crap lay too"
Wendy froze to the spot and looked blinkingly at Rain. "You? You haven’t?"
"I wish I hadn’t. It was last term. I was drunk, a little high, here have another cake"
Wendy took another cake and started to munch "I don’t believe it" she managed to say
"Shush, it’s ok, you’re better off without him honey honest" Rain said soothingly, a hand on her arm, before she moved in for a cuddle. "Its ok" she repeated.
Wendy felt warm and safe in her arms "Ooh thank you Rain, you’re a good friend"
"S’ok" said Rain softly, as one of her arms left the embrace and made its way across Wendy’s back, to her front and onto her chest "I could be more"


Wendy pulled back as if she’d received an electric shock
"Oh bloody hell not you an’ all!" Wendy gasped despairingly.
"Honey it’s ok, I swing both ways" Rain explained
"Well I bloody well don’t!" Wendy screamed "Ooh" she sighed "What is it with this place everyone’s sex mad?"
Rain looked puzzled "It’s a University" she said by way of explanation.
"Well tell em to find some other pin up, cos It’s not me! I came here to learn!" and with that Wendy dashed out of the room and back out into the hall, leaving Rain alone.
Suddenly she felt very woozy and unsure; she reached an arm out to the wall, but could not get a purchase and felt herself slide back to the wall opposite. It was a weird feeling and one she had only ever experienced with drink. But she’d only had a couple of small vodka and oranges all night, she couldn’t have been drunk.
She needed to get home. She began to walk down the hallway as it melted and wish- washed its way ahead of her.

She really needed to get home.

I had no recollection of getting home or into bed even, but later after some sleep, in the middle of the night, I sensed he was there.
He began to kiss me, my chest and my neck, my chin, my lips and even my teeth. I began to wriggle sleepily underneath as I felt him lower himself on top of me.

"Guy" Wendy sighed drowsily
"Mmmm Guy" she said licking at her lips, as she woke from slumber, eyes still half closed. "That’s nice" she said
She sighed on and on
"Ooh!" she wailed, "It hurts"
And she did, her sighs taking over, she felt him and felt pleasure.
The following day came a knock at the door, Wendy, confused and dazed from the night stumbled up to answer it, a duvet wrapped around her body.
She pulled open the door to reveal Guy.

Guy did a double take at the half dressed vision before him. Quickly getting his bearings he began to babble, "Look, ah Wendy I am so… so sorry, about everything. I want to make it up to you. I want you to know that life without someone as wonderful, as divine as you, well it isn’t worth living. I had a long hard think last night and decided that I would rather have one woman, rather than lots in one life. And we’ll work at your pace you know, I can respect you and your body, I mean its quite a body you know, you do have a nice bum, exquisite" he was trying to break the ice and he snorted before biting the bullet with, "but that isn’t all I love about you Wendy, I love your mind, your personality, I have done since that afternoon in the café at the cinema and your tale about the fairground. You are so different Wendy, so unique and I want to be part of that, what I’m trying to say is I want to be with-"

Guy stopped, his mouth opened slowly as he saw a figure walk behind Wendy’s back and to the door. He was fully dressed and clearly about to leave.
It was Prof Rickman.
He patted Wendy’s bare shoulder and smirked at Guy, "Dr Block, see you at the faculty" before breezing past him.
"Guy…" Wendy began, but Guy left before she could speak to him.

Before I could ask for help.

I found out later from Rain that ‘Anarchic Anna’s’ little party piece were cannabis filled cakes with a few other unsavoury additions also thrown in to the mix. LSD was mentioned in hushed terms, but I’d rather not think about it. She’d done it for years. The weariness I sensed, that was the years of hard drugs. ‘Little girl lost’ was her other nickname. I would not become that. Rain presumed, seeing me eat them that I was a little more freewheeling than she first thought, hence her trying it on with me. She was so sorry.
Prof Rickman…what a charmer.
I suppose the phrase then was ‘taken advantage of’ There’s a different one now, just one word.
But that did not happen to me, I’m no victim.
Funny how words and phrases change yet the love games remain the same.
Rickman moved to Birmingham rather swiftly the next term and died in a car crash.
I’m not sorry.
And Guy? I never did have what you’d call a relationship with Guy, but we did make love later, just the once, it was a new year and when we came it was like a beautiful sigh, a release of all that time, all that experience.
He was my proper first.
As it was meant to be.
In my final year I met a friend of Martin Jessup’s from the pub darts team, a local primary school teacher called Mike Wallace and I fell in love. I graduated and we married and have been ever since. Martin was best man. Guy was at the wedding too, briefly, and alone, surprisingly.
Mike and I had two kids, a boy and a girl, both lovely, and I went on to become a teacher too, something Dad was proud of, something worthwhile he called it.
Guy became a professor and he did write his book, a racy best seller called ‘Love Games’ I am in it, or at least a version of me, I didn’t mind. It made me laugh and think back fondly of those days, days of my youth and innocence.
No one took them from me.
I relinquished them.
The girl from Wigan had to grow up sometime, and she grew up very happily.

And as for the eponymous Guy Block…

Well you know my story, bummed around, stumbled at every turn, lothario lecturer and all that. But that’s just the half of it really.
I guess…
I mean I suppose…people tell you that for someone like me, saying ‘I love you’ is the hardest thing in the world, but they don’t know the half of it. It really isn’t you know, it’s not having the one to say it to that’s truly hard…and well…
Well, I think I have tried to find that sweet, beautiful, innocent young girl in one form or another ever since really.
Oh Wendy…Wendy
Never have found her.

© Mark Cunliffe April 2007

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