It's been a busy few weeks and it's already December. I'm still writing my new short story 'An Ordinary Witch' and hoping that is going to be a series. Well that's the idea. I've also been writing some flash fiction, which is currently being rejected by all of the women's magazines in the country. So instead of wasting them, I'll put them on here for your enjoyment.
In other news, I'll be snowboarding in Italy over new year, so I'll write a New Year's blog early this year as I'll be partying with a bar full of Italian snowboarders come 31st December. Next week I'll be giving away Ashwood House and then I'll be hitting the laptop in earnest to bring you some more stories a la L K Jay. So here's a story called 'D is for Doctor.' Hope you enjoy it.
The bell rang and the speed-dating host shouted, ‘Next!’
This was Nicola’s cue to move seats. She picked up her glass of Pinot and sat down in front of the next man, the fifth that evening. This one wasn't bad, he had a chiselled jaw and a full head of dark hair with a little sprinkle of grey. Fifth one’s a charm, thought Nicola. At least he looks like he has his own teeth.
Nicola flicked her hair behind her shoulder and put on her best smile, fiddling with her earring in an attempt to look flirtatious.
‘Hi, my name’s Nicola and I’m a secretary. I like old films and cooking, how about you?’
‘Daniel, I’m a consultant paediatrician. I like skiing and novels by Dickens.’
‘I love children!’ said Nicola, ‘and I like reading too, especially romance novels like Danielle Steel.’
Nicola could feel herself flushing; it was hard to avoid gushing in front of this man. He was the one, he had to be, her fortune-teller had said so.
Nicola giggled with her best friend Jose as the palm reader inspected her right hand.
‘Hmm, I feel that you will soon experience a new romance and he will be involved in medicine.’
‘It’s about time girl,’ said Jose.
‘Don’t I know it,’ said Nicola.
‘His name will begin with the letter D,’ said the palmist, ‘but I feel that you might experience a painful beginning.’
‘Will he be tall, dark and handsome?’ said Nicola, with a wry smile.
‘With any luck,’ said the palm reader. ‘Fifteen pounds please.’
Nicola handed over the money and the two best friends continued walking down the pier, enjoying the sun and the rest of their holiday.
‘Really?’ said Daniel. He didn't look very impressed with Nicola’s choice of author.
‘I remember reading A Christmas Carol at school,’ said Nicola. She was sure she had just saved the moment. She only had another minute to impress this man until the bell would go again and she’d lose him to another speed date.
Daniel looked at his watch and around the room, his eyes falling on the athletic blond woman sitting at the next table.
Try harder, thought Nicola, or you’ll lose him.
‘What’s your favourite food?’ she asked. ‘I’m a good cook; I bet I can cook your favourite meal.’
The way to win a man is through his stomach, thought Nicola. Not that her excellent roast lamb had stopped her ex-husband from leaving but that didn't matter now, because Daniel was a doctor and he was going to be her new man.
‘Sushi,’ said Daniel.
‘I love Chinese food!’ said Nicola.
‘It’s Japanese and I doubt even you could manage to prepare raw fish,’ said Daniel.
Ouch, thought Nicola. Daniel didn’t appear to be very pleasant.
The bell sounded again and without another word, Daniel moved onto the next table and beamed at the blond woman sitting in front of him.
Nicola took out her speed-dating card and put a big tick next to Daniel’s name. He had to be the one because he fit all the criteria and their beginning had certainly been painful.
Nicola rushed through the rest of the speed dates and by the end of the evening, she was eager to meet Daniel again, sure that he had put a big tick next to her name as well. She had even managed to send a text to Jose, telling her about Daniel. She had sent one back saying, ‘That’s brilliant sweetie, go for it!’
Nicola threw her speed-dating card in the bin as she left. It had all been a waste of time and that fifteen pounds to the palm reader had been a complete waste of money. Daniel hadn't chosen to see her again, instead he’d gone straight for the blond woman and she’d left them flirting with each other at the bar.
She pulled her scarf around her; it was going to be a frosty night. Nicola didn't see the patch of ice as her heel skidded on the pavement, but she felt the pain shoot up her leg as her ankle broke. Fortunately, it only took a few minutes for help to arrive. Nicola felt mortified as they lifted her into the back of the ambulance; it had been a truly terrible evening.
The dark-haired man’s eyes twinkled as he smiled at Nicola. ‘Looks like you need cheering up love. My name’s Dave and I’ll be your paramedic for the evening.’