The next two days are the worst days in your life. Alright, that’s an exaggeration but you’ve never puked that much in your life for sure. Apparently, Thea dragged your breathless body to bed and the only sign of life from you was – again according to Thea – sensual murmuring ‘Oh, Dr. Thorington, please take me right here on this lab table.’ You sincerely doubt her truthfulness.
When you can open your mouth without vomiting, you tell her about the auction and the kneeing episode. She approves and dreamily speculates on how and where John “endonoscopied the blonde wanker.” Her knowledge of medical sciences is clearly mediocre.
You never discuss the Irishman she apparently was going to shag at least twice. She doesn’t seem inclined, and what kind of friend would you be to pressure her? When, or if she wants to talk, she knows you are always here to listen.
The next week and a half go smoothly, everything seems to be back to normal. Not too many rumours seem to spread through uni. Someone mentions that there was a hitch at the charity party, but altogether no one bothers. You don’t hear anything about broken noses or bruised knuckles and assume everything ended peacefully. You breathe out and go on with your work.
For a few days after the party you do not see Dr. Claufield. Then she shows up with her usual laptop and folders and behaves like nothing happened. Alrighty, two can play this game.
Another week later she glides into the lab. You’re working on your laptop, swaying your ponytail to Lady Gaga in your earphones. You swear, it’s Thea’s iPod. Dr. Claufield places a cup of your usual coffee – and the right amount of sugar and cream packets – on the table in front of you. Creepy…
You pull the earphones out and fix your glasses.
“Wren, dearest…” Her voice’s all honey and purr. Bitch.
“Dr. Claufield, good morning.”
“Please, dear, I asked you hundreds of times, call me Maya.” That has never happened.
“Good morning, Maya.” Your lips are smiling but you hope she sees in your eyes the mental image you have in your head. It involves stuffing her perfectly coiffed blonde head in a loo. Pimping you at that party and using you for her petty vengeance for some beef with John – not cool. If she wants to arse him up, she should do it without involving you in it. Surely, she can mess up something in his vibrant, eventful, and endlessly rewarding life. Key his car, bitch, but leave me out of it!
“Wren, you were invited to the Rivendell Institute for a guest lecture. They wanted a presentation on our research, and I suggested you. I think you will win the audience right away, with you charming personality and profound knowledge of the subject.” Alright, where is the hidden poop in this offer? “It is an all-paid-for, three day weekend, a room in the Sheraton hotel, border, spa. You can even bring a plus one, the room is either King bed or two Queens. They sent the proposal, so just look through it.”
She’s smiling very pleasantly. And you think that you are a very, very poor judge of character. How did you even doubt John’s evaluation of her character? You really should learn to listen. You are just so angry at him all the time, so your logic goes down the chute. Clearly, he was right, and Dr. C here is a first class viper.
You return her smile.
“Thank you, Maya, that would be a privilege.” She pats your shoulder and leaves. You close your laptop with a clap. This is way too good to be good news. A weekend in a luxurious hotel, a chance to meet Dr. Elwig – big fan by the way -representing your lab, potentially turning it into a publication. If you didn’t know you would assume she liked you. Which, you know for sure, is not true.
You pick up your phone and leave Thea a message. After all, whatever this is all about, you two can really use a weekend in a five start hotel and resort.
You hang up, and just as you are about to bite into your granola bar, someone plucks it from your hands. You turn around and see John.
“Miss Leary, we need to talk.” He drops the bar back into your Tardis lunchbox with a slight disgust on his face. “Common, I’m taking you out for lunch.”
“What?” A thought runs through your brain matter that staring with your mouth agape is very unattractive, Wren. He picks you up under your elbow and makes you get up.
“Common.” He’s literally dragging you to the exit, and you only manage to grab your handbag from the chair.
You leave through the back staircase, and he’s opening the door to his Jag in front of you. Your stubbornness flares up. Is he embarrassed to be seen with you? Is that what the hasty sneaking away all about? You freeze in front of the car.
“Get in, Wren.” His tone is irritated.
“No…” You’re pouting. Why does he always manage to bring up an unreasonable, petulant child in you? “Not until you explain what’s going on.”
“I need to talk to you, and I don’t want to do it here.”
“What about what I want?” Oh, that sounded so childish. Pull yourself together, Wren. Being hasty and bad-tempered with him never brought good results before. You’ll make all the wrong assumptions, and then you’ll be sorry for it later! As always.
He gives you a long pointed look. It’s like he’s looking at a puppy that is considering peeing on a carpet. Like ‘I love you but I will smack your backside if you don’t start behaving.’ And then you realize what you just thought, and violent blush spreads over your cheeks. No, get your mind out of the gutter. No imagining him smacking your bum. Shite. Alright, libido, I have an impressive vibrator, and I’m not afraid to use it. So shut it and wait till the evening.
“Sorry, but I just don’t understand…” You’re still holding your positions. He’s not dragging you with him like a bag of potatoes!
“Wren, please, get in the bloody car.” By now you know that if he’s swearing you really managed to piss him off.
You sigh and climb inside. He smacks the door way too forcefully and gets on the driver’s seat.
“Lunch, Wren. What do you want for lunch?” He sounds peevish and really exasperated with the silly old you. You’re really tempted to say ‘tacos’ and see him squirm, but you restrain yourself. Yes, it would be a chav choice, and he’d hate it, but on the other hand, seeing him bite into a crunchy shell with his even white teeth might be the end of you. Juice will trickle down his hand, he will lick it, suck on his skin… Evening, libido, wait till the evening. We will unpack Thea’s gift, and you can imagine his lips on anything you want. Shite!
“Doesn’t matter.” Your voice is so obviously chocked, that he gives you a confused sideways glance. He starts the car, and you just hope it’s not sushi. All innuendos aside, you hate raw fish.