could hear the snoring of others as they slept. He disposed of the condom then washed himself in the sink. Thomas Charlton Taylor was no longer a virgin but stood a man.
Tom returned to the dorm and closed the door he got back into bed with Colette and they sat together whispering in the dark until they both drifted off.
It was strange that Tom’s first sexual encounter would be with a foreigner but it was something that he would remember for the rest of his life.’
He left Colette sleeping as he dressed in the room as the dawn was just breaking. Glancing at his watch it was four am and he wrote something on a piece of paper then left it by the bedside table.’
He turned up the lapel on his jacket then made his way to the front door. Muriel wasn’t there so he slipped out and ran home. The smell of paint was still in the air as he turned into his street and opened the door to his house. He put on his work clothes then took his bait bag with something that his mother had made then eased the bicycle outside before pedalling to work.
He felt like he had changed somewhat; he had, he was no longer a boy; his innocence was lost in the throws of passion between a French girl that he hardly knew. He would never see Colette again as she left that day to board the ferry back to France.
She awoke at seven o’clock to find Tom gone then saw the note. In it he wrote “Thank you Colette; I will never forget you or the night that we shared together.’
Norman Archer had been up since three thirty his first batch of bread was already baking and the buns were almost ready to go in as he used an automatic dough cutter that made 60 buns in one go.
Olive Dobbs arrived and threw on her apron ready for the first batch of customers who would come in for bread and buns.
Tom arrived quickly washed his hands put on his whites then set to work making the first batch of pies. The fillings were made all he had t do was grease over a hundred bread tins and pie dishes then fill them. Liz Smith would be in soon and the lids for the pies would be made and egg washed then placed in the oven ready.
There was very little talk going on as everyone knew what was expected of them.
Mr Archer was waiting as Tom made the next batch of dough ready to prove. It was tipped into the stainless steel tray and then emptied onto a flour dusted table to be cut up and then wrapped up and stacked. Then the short crust pastry was made and finally the meringue mix. Then they could take five minutes to drink a cup of tea before getting on with the pasties.
Norman Archer came down each morning and disposed of the dead rats that had eaten the poison mixed with the flour. There still was a problem though with the flour weevils and the cockroaches some of them flew around and Liz was terrified of them.
Tom swatted them and then killed them by drowning them in vinegar. If you squashed them they laid eggs and there would be thousands of the buggers flying around. No good where you had food.
Tom took out a tray of pasties and laid them out to cool he was hungry having not ate breakfast. He dropped two mince pies purposely on the floor and then put them to one side to cool.
“Watch what you are doing Tom shouted Norman.’
“Sorry Mr Archer I burned my arm.
“Get it seen to hurry up.’
Tom took the two pies through to the cupboard where the plasters were kept. He had them down his neck in under a minute then walked back out with a plaster on an imaginary burn.