This is the start of something I wrote on Valentine’s Day. Then I started my course and haven’t really written anything since. But I’m feeling writey again and I wanted to share this bit with you. A teaser of sorts.
Sienna checked the time again, for the tenth time in about as many minutes – not that it would make Tim appear any faster– and sighed.
Her brother was always late, even on Valentine’s Day, and at the age of twenty-eight, it was very unlikely to change.
It had become their tradition that, if they were both single on Valentine’s Day or their birthdays, they would go out for dinner at Mr Wong’s Chinese Palace.
Tim wasn’t actually single but his lovely girlfriend Sasha was in Thailand on a work assignment for a travel magazine so he’d decided, with Sasha’s blessing, to take Sienna out for dinner.
Sienna had broken up with her boyfriend of 6 months a couple of months previously, after finding him with someone else. The fact that it’d been another man he’d been making out with on the bed had made it slightly less of a cliché.
Her heart hadn’t exactly been broken, the relationship was still new and she was always very careful to keep her feelings on lockdown, had been since…
No, no thinking about that tonight. Nope. No moping allowed.
She’d have a nice dinner with her brother, then they’d go back to her house to watch Anchorman 1 and 2 like they did every year, after which he’d head home and she’d crash into bed, satisfied the highly commercialised “holiday” was over.
One day she’d find someone who wasn’t her brother to watch Anchorman with on Valentine’s Day, she was vaguely confident of that, but in the meantime Tim would have to do.
If he ever showed up.
Her phone rang and she knew it would be Tim before she even looked at the caller ID.
“Yo!” her brother’s voice rang in her ears as she picked up the call.
“Where are you?”
“Sorry sis, something came up. I’m on my way, I swear!”
“Uh huh, heard that one before!”
“Ok so I just got home and I need to change before we head out but—”
Sienna rolled her eyes. On his way. Ha! If he’d just got home from work, he’d need a shower to wash off all the dust from the construction site and Tim didn’t know the meaning of ‘quick shower’.
“So not really on your way then.” Sienna said, unable to keep the derision out of her tone.
“Shut up. Like I said, something came up. Anyway, do you still want me to pick you up or do you want to meet at Mr Wong’s?”
“How about I come over to your house and we go from there?”
“Um… yeah… ok… I guess that could work. See you soon.”
Sienna could tell something was up from the way he’d hesitated when she’d offered to come to his house. The jerk better not be playing around behind Sasha’s back! Sienna liked Sasha, they’d become close friends over the past three years as she’d done wonders calming down Sienna’s crazy brother. Her job as a free-lance photographer took her away sometimes for weeks at a time but they worked around that.
She got off the couch and turned off the TV before putting her phone in her handbag. She turned the lights off in the kitchen and lounge, leaving only the soft glow of the lamp in the corner of the foyer. She dug her keys out of her handbag, locking the door behind her and got into her car. Tim lived about 15 mins away, he should be nearly done with his “quick” shower by the time she got there. She was about to back out of her driveway when her phone rang again.
“Hey, you.” Sienna smiled when she heard the voice of her best friend and colleague, Ashley.
“Hi you. What’s up? Aren’t you having dinner with Corey tonight?”
“I am, but then I thought about you, all alone tonight of all nights and thought I’d ring to see if you wanted to join us.”
“Seriously? It’s Valentine’s Day, I’m not intruding on your date with your man! Besides, me and Tim are doing Mr Wong’s tonight.”
“No Sasha?” Ashley asked, well aware of the long-standing tradition between the brother and sister.
“She’s in Thailand for work, she emailed me saying she was jealous I’d get to have Mrs Wong’s famous pork dumplings tonight and demanded I eat her share as well as mine.”
“Mrs Wong does make the best dumplings. Ok then, I’ll let you go and go back to my sexy man. He’s cooking me Pad Thai.”
“Oooh! Are you going to reward him in that special way like you did that time?” Sienna said with a chuckle.
“Shut up. I don’t know what you mean. I’m going now. Don’t get too drunk watching Ron Burgundy later!” Ashley said before they rang off.
Sienna was still smiling as she drove to her brother’s house, making a mental note to take a screencap of Paul Rudd to send to Ashley later. That girl looooooved Paul Rudd.
She parked outside Tim’s house and didn’t bother knocking on the front door before walking in. She had a key, but when Tim knew she was coming he left the door unlocked.
She could hear the shower going but there was music coming from the lounge so she headed that way, hoping Tim really was in the shower, not just trying to turn his bathroom into a steam room.
She stopped in her tracks when she reached the lounge. There was someone in the room, but it wasn’t Tim. The tall man with the short brown hair and deliciously wide shoulders currently looking through her brother’s DVD collection was not someone she’d thought she’d be seeing again, moreover he was someone she definitely was not prepared to see. Not tonight.
Not ever, really… Not after the last time. She kept her eyes on him – he hadn’t noticed her coming in yet – and took a step backwards, then another, getting ready to turn around and run all the way to the door, her car, home.
Come on, feet, move. Brain, stop staring at the pretty pretty man, need to go now before
She didn’t hear the footsteps until it was too late and Tim put his arm around her shoulders with aloud ‘There you are!’ that made Mike turn around. Their eyes met and she saw the moment he recognised her. Her cheeks were burning and she wished the floor would open and swallow her.
(click here for part 2)