KEEP ON LOVING

Can you really love someone forever?

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5. THE OTHER SIDE OF THE WORLD

 

‘On the other side of the world.’

(EVERYTHING ABOUT YOU)

 

 

ONE DIRECTION

 

The next Friday night in the Safeway car park Haydn made the most of what had happened. He was quite an actor when he wanted to be. He had them in stitches.

 

‘Lucy was terrified. So was I, I suppose, but nothing like her. Not so Love? So, his dad says we should be ashamed of ourselves. What on earth do we think we were doing? In his house? In his son’s room? What would happen if he told our parents? Can’t understand why he made all the fuss. We were only doing what everyone else is doing. Even Gopal will be at it one day.’ He laughed, looking at Gopal who was enjoying the story he’d been involved in. So Gopal laughed too.

 

Kevin phoned him later and asked what it was like.

 

‘Great,’ he said, ‘Like it always is.’

 

***

 

 

A few days later Kevin phoned again.

 

‘How’d you change Lucy’s mind? About going into the army, I mean? Because you could wind up on the other side of the world. To her, I mean.’

 

‘Easier than getting her pants of the first time,’ he said, and then regretted it as soon as he’d said the sentence. He felt disloyal. But the boys talk had just slipped out. He tried to cover up. ‘Well, actually we decided it would be good for both of us. We need to be apart for a while, anyway. So we agreed. So it was mutual. And we’ll both be able to save some money. Which will stand us in good stead. So, that’s it. And I’m off to basic tomorrow. And I’ll soon be on the other side of the world.’

 

 

***

 

Something was happening. He knew his excuses were rather lame.

 

But, although he was not seeing her during the week as often as he had before, he always saw her in the car park with the others at the end of the week. It had become a ritual.

 

‘Sorry darlin, not sure I can make that, but I’ll see you at Safeway on Friday. That’s for sure.’

 

‘Please tell me,’ she said on the phone. ‘Are you getting tired of me? We don’t seem to see each other that much any more. Have you found someone else?’

 

‘Now don’t be silly, Lucy. But we must talk about a few things.’

 

So they did.

 

‘Look, let’s try to see a few years ahead. You’re sure to go to university, but I’m not sure that’s the life for me. And, even if it was, it’s not likely that we’d get in at the same place anyway.’

 

Lucy’s face was white. She didn’t look convinced. He put his arm around her.

 

‘Don’t worry darlin. I’m not saying it’s over. Not at all. It’s just that… well, perhaps we need a break. A short one, I mean. And if I go into the army, I’ll get some skills that I’ll be able use for life. You know, leadership and all that stuff. And while I’m away I’ll be able to save. Almost everything I get. Bonuses and all. You know, for being overseas. And so will you. Be able to save, I mean. Then I’ll leave as soon as we’ve got enough for a deposit. You know, a small house. Or a flat, perhaps. So I’ll be out at about the same time as you finish at uni.’

 

Even while he was saying it, he wasn’t sure he meant it. Was he bored? Had they been together too long? Why was he feeling so restless? Was he making this up? Was it true? Or just pack of lies because he was tired of Lucy?

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