The Arrangement Pt. 01
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Foreword: This story is a bit of slow starter, I like to develop a bit of a plot first, even on a short story. If you want sex from the get go, you’d best move on, otherwise I hope you enjoy my horny ramblings.
Chapter 1 – Decisions
In March 2007 I had a stroke of luck; I won 13.8 million pounds on the National Lottery.
I was already comfortable, a single (divorced) man in the prime of his life (35 at the time), an engineering consultant for an international consultancy, own house, own car and reasonably fit and healthy. I know this sounds a bit like a dating site profile, but that is basically what I had resorted to. I gave up work and went travelling for a year, first class and champagne all the way, but I was looking for something, just not exactly certain what it was.
I am not saying there was any lack of social or love life, far from it, I had no problem in that department. I was reasonably turned out at 5’9 and told I was good looking in a Bruce Willis kind of way and I kept myself in very good shape with an active lifestyle. My problem was that a lot of money seems to make a man attractive to certain kinds of people, especially women of a certain kind, and they were not the kind of women that I was attracted to.
I just did not go to the types of places that I could meet the kind of woman I was attracted to, someone who could hold a conversation that did not repeat the words shopping, fashion, holiday and shopping over and over again. In fact someone who could just hold a conversation would have been refreshing.
The dating site thing was fun at first, I met some great people, many that have become firm friends, but I discovered that the women that I found attractive and stimulating were, understandably I suppose, driven and successful; they were at the top of their game or ran their own business and had no real free time. I am up for a dirty weekend in Paris as much as the next man, but just having rushed weekends a couple of times a month are not for me. I needed something else, less rushed and frenetic.
I weighed up my options and decided I would have to do something that had a purpose, something I could immerse myself in. That way things could just take their natural course, que sera sera and all that. I decided to expand my mind and go back to university and do a degree in a non-engineering discipline. My other loves were history and literature, so I got some prospectuses (prospectii?) and decided to do Medieval History at the University of Reading. It was very easy to get a place, as soon as I mentioned cash up front, that I would have my own accommodation and would not be any kind of strain on the system, entry was a breeze.
House hunting was enjoyable and I almost decided to go into property development but then the recession loomed and I decided that was possibly not the best time. I got somewhere five miles away from the campus and spent the summer refurbishing and modifying it to my satisfaction. It was a large five bedroom place in half an acre or so, so in went the pool, the gym, the hot tub, home cinema, kitchen and en-suite bathrooms, out went the drab decoration and furnishings. I also made the house ultra efficient with new windows, solar heating and ground source heat pumps. I even invested in some new art that had increased in value before it was even on the wall. By the time October arrived I was all set and had read all the books that had been recommended by the History department.
Chapter 2 – University
The first day at university I had some slight misgivings. I did not realise quite how old 37 was until I was standing in a class of 18 and 19 year olds. A couple of them thought I was the tutor. I did not think I had not dressed particularly ‘old’, I was in faded black denim jeans, a trendy faded tee shirt and casual zip top, but I stuck out like an un-ironed shirt at Saville Row tailor’s. For a start my jeans were round my waist, not half way down my backside and I did not have at least one earphone in my ear.
Do not get me wrong, I was far from the oldest person on campus, not even the oldest student, there were plenty of older people around, lecturers, cleaners and maintenance people, adult students, but there were none of them in the Medieval History class.
The lecturer in charge of the pastoral welfare of the class came in and he encouraged everyone to introduce themselves. Everyone was very forthcoming with their aims and ambitions but I was the polar opposite, giving almost no information as to why I had decided to do that particular course or what my final goal was, mainly because there was no final goal. Someone asked if I was going into teaching so I just said ‘I am thinking of something along those lines’ and left it at that.
The course was interesting and stimulating and I threw myself into it. The curriculum was arranged so that there was a minimum amount of work you had to do, but almost no maximum, so I spent a lot of my time doing research, digging into obscure sources Maltepe Escort for information and detail. I found that I had become a bit of a font of all knowledge to many and several of the students were coming to me for advice and to discuss ideas. I got into some deep meaningful discussions with several of the lecturers and by the second term I was even asked to give a couple of lectures myself on subjects that I had researched.
One afternoon in the second term, after lectures had finished, I had stayed behind to discuss something with the lecturer and left about fifteen minutes later than everyone else. As I walked my bike round to the front of the building I heard a girl’s shouts coming from around the corner ahead of me. I rounded the corner and one of the girls from my class, Mel, was shouting into her mobile ‘Well fuck you, I wouldn’t share a house with you if YOU paid ME you BASTARD!’
She reached her arm back to throw her mobile across the road and I said ‘You don’t really want to do that do you?’
She stopped mid swing and turned and glared at me. She recognised me and replied ‘I am just so angry! Argghhh!’ Then she just deflated and her face crumpled, all her anger burned away.
She turned away from me, starting to sob. ‘I’m sorry’, she said in a choked voice.
‘Sorry for what? You haven’t done anything to me.’ I replied, trying to keep my tone light.
‘I don’t know. My life is just shit and getting worse…’
I said ‘Woah Mel! It can’t be that bad can it? I never see you without a smile or a laugh, and you are doing okay with the course aren’t you?’
‘Yeah, that’s all that is going okay though. I haven’t got a job, my boyfriend just dumped me, that was him on the phone, and he has just ripped me off for two hundred quid.’ She said with an air of finality.
‘That is not a good situation to be in, why can’t you get it back off him?’ I said with concern in my voice.
‘because…oh it’s too long a story’ she sighed.
I saw how depressed she was, I had never seen her like that. I asked her if she wanted to talk about it.
‘Not really…maybe…I don’t know. What good will talking about it do?’ She asked, looking at me with her sad red lined eyes.
‘Sometimes it just helps…’ I replied. I could see she was considering the idea ‘Come on, let me put my bike back on the rack, there is a decent coffee shop on the parade.’
I locked up my bike and as we walked over to the cafe, she started telling me her predicament.
‘My now ex-boyfriend runs a music and DVD shop in town, he is cashing in on the students, they buy DVDs, CDs, computer games, books and then when they get bored with them they sell them on. Well he is like a middle man, he buys them for a fixed price and then sells them from his shop. He used to run a market stall, but now he has taken one of the vacant shops in the Broad Street Centre. I was working for him on his stall, not great money but it helped spread my loan. I leant him the money from my loan to help get into the shop , he was going to pay me back over the next couple of months and I’d work more regularly in his shop for more money. And I was going to move in with him…’ She started crying again.
We got to the coffee shop and she ran her fingers under her eyes and lifted her head as I opened the door for her. We sat at a table and the waitress came over for our order. I ordered a flat white coffee and she ordered a small skinny latte.
When the waitress left I asked Mel if she wanted anything to eat.
She replied ‘I can’t afford to eat out for the next few months…if ever.’
I smiled and said ‘I’ll stand you a bit of tea, I really don’t want it being paid back. I’m just righting the balance, something good for something bad.’
She smiled sadly and said ‘Thanks, I am very hungry, I’ve had two cigarettes since I had a slice of toast this morning.’
When the waitress brought our coffees we ordered jacket potatoes, hers with coleslaw and cheese, and mine with Tuna.
I asked ‘So what went wrong with the plan?’
‘He has decided to move the other girl that works for him in with him. She works during the day, she has got a kiddy and she works when the kiddy’s at school, I take over in the evenings. I thought there was something going on, he has been making sure she and I didn’t meet for the last couple of months. You know, taking her wages round to her on Friday instead of her picking them up after school, that sort of thing.’ She said with a rueful smile.
I said the guy was an idiot and that she was better off without him. It sounded lame and she gave me a smile that I am sure she would have given her dad if he had given her the “plenty more fish in the sea” chat. At least she smiled, better than 10 minutes earlier.
We started chatting about more general things and the food arrived. She attacked hers with enthusiasm and I guessed she probably did not eat particularly well, working in the evenings and spending time with her market stall İstanbul Escort boyfriend. I took a closer look at her as she ate, she was very slim, even skinny, you could clearly see the bones in the back of her hands. She was about 5′ 5″, shoulder length auburn hair, thick and falling in soft curls that framed her pretty features. Her eyes were very dark, almost black, something I noticed when I first saw her, it made her look like her pupils were dilated. She was very pretty, she just needed more flesh on her and she would be beautiful, just a little young for me, she must have only been 18, 19 at most.
We finished eating and I asked if she wanted anything else.
‘Are you still treating me?’ she asked with a twinkle in her eye.
I smiled and said ‘Yes I am.’
‘In that case I would love one of the apple slices they do here please.’
I called the waitress over and ordered desert for Mel and more coffees for both of us.
Mel asked ‘So what’s your story, why are you here? You must be a teacher.’
I smiled and said ‘I’m just interested in history.’
She gave a look of suspicion and said ‘You can’t be doing this just for fun. Especially the way you are doing it, some of the class would rather go to you than the lecturer, you explain things better. You are so a teacher, the way you gave those lectures.’
‘Really I’m not, I’m just into history. I was an engineering consultant in another life, so I’m used to holding meetings and giving CPD lectures and that sort of thing.’
‘Continuous professional development. I used to lecture on sustainability and safety and design of high voltage electrical installations. Probably all a bit boring for you.’ I smiled.
‘A consultant? You must be rich then, consultants make loads of money. You must have lots if you can afford to take time off to do this just ‘coz you are interested.’
I smiled again and said ‘I’ve done okay.’
‘Where do you live?’ She asked ‘You’re not from around here and you don’t live in halls like the rest of us newbies.’
‘I used to live in Kent, but now I’ve got a place about five miles away.’ I replied, wondering where this was going.
‘Rented? I really want to get out of halls. I couldn’t wait to move in with Mark.’
‘I didn’t think you could move out in the first year.’ I said
‘You aren’t supposed to and you have to carry on paying for accommodation, but loads of people move out early to make sure they get somewhere. I won’t get out this year now, and I don’t know how I’m going to be able to live now that I am £200 pounds short.’
Her eyes began to fill with tears again.
I didn’t want her to start crying again so I asked ‘Do you want me to go with you to see this Mark? Ask for your money back…’
‘He hasn’t got it, and I believe him, he paid rent on the new shop and bought racks and a till and stuff.’ She sat looking into her empty coffee cup and I watched her thinking about her future.
Finally she said ‘I don’t want to go back onto campus yet. I might go into town and walk a bit. Do you want to come?’
I considered her offer and said ‘I was only going to spend time in the gym, what the hell, let’s go for a walk and a drink.’
I dropped some notes on the table to cover the food and drink and a tip and we stood to leave.
We walked toward town and had a drink in every pub and bar on the way, by the time nine pm came and went we were both giggling at everything and hanging on to one another as we staggered to the next bar.
She stumbled and hung onto my arm tighter to stop herself from falling. She giggled ‘I’m very drunk, I hope you aren’t going to try to take ashvantage of a poor drunk girl.’ And she laughed like that was the most hilarious thing she’d heard.
‘Course I wouldn’t, why would I do that?’ I said as I hoisted her up again.
‘You are very sweet.’ She said ‘you bought me dinner and drinks even though I haven’t got any money to pay you back.’
She tried to kiss me on the cheek and nearly stumbled again, which started her laughing again.
We had another drink each in the next pub, we’d had enough beer and by now she was on Jack Daniels and Coke, I was on Glenfiddich with ice and water.
She finished her drink and said ‘I need the loo’ and stood up and nearly fell into my lap, banging into the table spilling several drinks in the process. There were several students at the table and one of them said ‘get your fucking girlfriend under control Granddad.’
Mel laughed and said ‘yeah Granddad get your fucking girlfriend under control’ and tottered off to the toilet.
I got my wallet out and gave the guy with the mouth £20 to replace the spilt drinks and went to make sure Mel did not cause any more chaos on the way to or from the toilet.
She came out with an inane grin and said ‘get me another drink Alex, honey.’
I looked at her twisted jeans and the smeared lipstick she had obviously tried to apply and said I would get her back Anadolu Yakası Escort to the campus.
She pulled a face but didn’t argue and she grabbed my arm as I guided her to the exit and the nearest taxi rank.
We got outside and the fresh air hit me like a sledge hammer. I had done some serious drinking over the last couple of years, but not much in the past six months and I had lost count of the whiskeys that I had drunk that night. I staggered and managed to keep myself upright by sheer force of will.
Mel on the other hand was not so fortunate, her hand slipped from my arm and she collapsed in a heap on the floor. I bent to pick her up and nearly joined her. I managed to stand her up. We headed for the taxi with Mel doing a good impression of a piece of string.
We got to the taxi rank and headed for the first cab in the queue. The driver was leaning against the cab door as we approached with me almost carrying the limp form of Mel, her head against my shoulder and her mop of hair over her face.
The cab driver took one look at us and said ‘You or her throw up in my cab and it is £100 to have it cleaned mate.’
I nodded and struggled getting Mel onto the back seat, the driver watched me struggle and did not help at all. I got in the other side and he asked ‘Where to mate?’
‘The University’ I slurred.
He looked at me waiting. I looked back at him wondering why he was not going anywhere. Finally he said ‘Campus? Gate? A halls of residence?’
I looked at the supine form of Mel on the seat next to me and said ‘Mel, what halls are you in? Mel, Mel.’
There was no response apart from a loud snorting snore.
I tried to get my head to work. Get to the Whiteknights gate and hope someone recognised her? There were 14,000 students on campus, unlikely. Put her in a hotel room? She would wake up on her own in a strange room, not good. Back to mine it was then. I gave the driver my address and he set off shaking his head.
I got Mel out of the cab and held her against my hip as I paid the cab driver with a healthy tip for his troubles. I manhandled her almost unconscious form into the house, up the two flights of stairs in the stairwell and into one of the guest bedrooms. I managed to pull the covers back then laid her gently in the bed, turned her into the recovery position so she wouldn’t choke if she vomited, pulled off her shoes, a pair off canvas pumps that had seen better days, considered getting her skirt and top off and decided against it, and then covered her with the quilt.
I headed for the kitchen and a glass of fruit juice and a slice of toast then I had a shower and crawled into my own bed. It was only 10:30 pm. I remembered that the first and only lecture tomorrow was not until two and set the alarm for 08:30 before turning over and falling into a very deep sleep.
Chapter 3 – Hangover Cures
The alarm woke me to a splitting headache and way too much light coming in through the curtains I had forgotten to close the night before. I crawled out of bed into the shower then still wet I went down to the pool via the guest room, where I checked Mel was okay and still asleep, and the fridge for a carton of fresh orange juice.
I took several mouthfuls of cold, sweet orange juice and dived into the pool and did thirty hard lengths, all the while telling myself what an idiot I had been. I got out of the pool, dried myself and put on my robe and went to make coffee and make some eggs on toast.
I was half way through my second cup of coffee when Mel appeared in a guest robe rubbing her hair with a towel. She had obviously found the en-suite bathroom okay. She had wondered from the dining room rather than the hall so that meant she had wondered through the ground floor to get to the kitchen. She was looking around at everything before she saw me and gave me a big smile.
‘Nice place!’ she remarked.
‘Uh huh, want coffee? Toast? Eggs?’ I asked.
‘Mmm, that would be great.’ She said, still wondering round the kitchen looking at everything. ‘Who else lives here?’
‘Just me.’ I said.
She looked at me with wide eyes. ‘How much does this cost to rent a month?’
‘Not rented…its mine.’
‘No way!’ she exclaimed.
I shrugged ‘Way.’
I handed her a coffee and put bread in the toaster. I put a couple of eggs into poach in boiling water.
Mel slipped onto a stool at the breakfast bar and looked at me with big eyes over the top of her cup. ‘Nice coffee’ she said.
‘Thanks, I have it blended for me. You can have the mix if you want.’
‘I’d rather just come here and drink yours.’ She replied with a little smile on her face.
I didn’t reply as I buttered her toast and placed the eggs on top.
I handed her the plate and cutlery and she asked ‘Don’t suppose you have tomato ketchup do you?’
I smiled and said ‘Sorry. I can do you tomatoes if you want.’
I passed her two plum tomatoes from the crisper in the fridge. ‘They’re already washed, I wash them before I put them in the fridge.’
She smiled and shook her head. She ate in silence for a few minutes then she said ‘Don’t suppose you need a cleaner do you? I’d offer to be cook and cleaner but you’d be dead in a week. I bet you cook really well anyway.’
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