The Disappearance of Lady Frances Carfax

“Wow, you’re beautiful,” the random chap says as we walk down the street. He beckons to his friend. “Look at her: she’s so beautiful.”
Smiling at them with the expression of someone-who-doesn’t-speak-English, I keep walking to the bus stop. Am pleased though: have made an effort and my Look has come together: the leopard-print dress that I wore with Arjen and CatBoy, nude fishnet tights and cream boots. Even managed to put some make-up on before leaving the house.

Arriving at the pub, I find a seat outside and wait for Mr Half-French-Sports-Enthusiast. After a few minutes I see him. He comes over to my table.
“What would you like to drink?” He says. His teeth are indeed very white but he is shorter and less substantial than I was expecting.
“Gin and slimline tonic please,” I say, and he scurries off to the bar.
Haven’t been here since my meeting with GiraffeBoy in early summer. It’s still warm and busy outside: groups of people lounging on the cushions. This pub will be a good meeting place in the winter: it’s just by the bus stop.
“Here you go,” Sports Enthusiast says on his return, handing me my drink.
“So, what are these fun things that you love?” I say.
“Badminton: I play a lot of that. And football, but I got injured,” he says. “Do you play any sport?”
“I go to the gym, and cycle and swim,” I say.
“And reading,” he says.
“What do you like to read?” I ask him.
“Crime fiction.”
“Have you read the new Rebus book? I’m reading it now,” I say.
“Oh, I read one Rebus book years ago but I didn’t like it,” he says.
“Really? I think they’re excellent,” I say, surprised that anyone wouldn’t want to devour all the Rebus books. “So, who do you live with?”
“My four year old daughter,” he says.
“Ah. You didn’t mention her,” I say.
“Well I wouldn’t, would I?” He says.

It’s downhill from here really. We just don’t click I suppose and the conversation is strained. Excusing myself to go to the loo, I’m so tired. I could be at home watching Murder in Mind I think.
Returning to the table, he’s vanished. Taking a quick walk around the pub, I realise that he’s vanished.
“Have you gone?” I text him.
No reply.
At least I’m not going to have a late night, I think as I sit on the bus home. How rude though! He could at least have said that he wanted to leave.

Walking home from the bus stop, a random chap approaches me.
“I just want to tell you how beautiful you are, lady,” he says.
So at least my outfit is a success, I think as I smile at him and make my way home…

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