Guess Who I Pulled Last Night(7)

By: Nikki Ashton

“Charlie,” she asked, stroking her granddaughter’s lank, greasy hair, “what has that man left you with? Please tell me.”

“Memories Gran, we did have some good times.” Charlotte sniffed loudly.

“Memories won’t keep you warm at night. You should be out there, putting yourself about a bit. When Grandpa died I didn’t hang about, a woman has her needs, even at 72. I was never away from the bingo, that bingo caller couldn’t get enough of me, even with all that cellophane on my legs and bottom; and he was younger than me!”

“He was still a pensioner Gran, and anyway it’s cellulite not cellophane.”

Choosing to ignore Charlotte’s lack of enthusiasm, Joan pulled the duvet away from her granddaughter’s sofa bound body.

“Come on, get yourself up and dressed; you’re coming to the bingo with me. There’s a new caller starting tonight, he might be a decent bit of trouser.”

Charlotte didn’t go to the bingo, but it did make her realise that a night out with Kerry and Bets was a much better option.

All that was three years ago, and she was now okay. She’d had some love action, but nothing serious; in fact sex twice, in three years, was not a good ratio. Her main priority had been her job, working tirelessly to help Paul to build up the business, which they had been very successful at. Paul’s father was to retire permanently the following year, and both he and his business partner, Gerald Blunderstone, wanted Paul to take over the reins. This obviously meant that Paul couldn’t be at Palmer Insurance every day, so because of her hard work and commitment over the years, Paul had offered Charlotte a promotion; he wanted her to take over the helm, which she gladly accepted.

Her salary was generous enough for her to have saved a sizeable amount of money, to have been able to buy a lovely semi-detached house, furnished with all the best furniture, and to wear all the best clothes. Life was great, or so she kept telling herself, but something was missing. She wanted to be able to cuddle up in front of the fire with someone, other than her beloved cat Petula. She wanted to be able to talk about her day, and even though she was an independent woman, she wanted to be cherished and to be in a happy, committed, trusting relationship.

Chapter 2

The wind and rain were fighting with each other outside Bets’ window as she buried her head further under the duvet. She was bored, as usual for a Sunday, spending her time thinking about inconsequential nonsense such as why you don’t get white dog poo anymore, why are Wagon Wheels now so small, and do men who wear toupees really think that their hair looks real? As well as being bored her head hurt, as usual, after a “quiet night in” with the girls. She glanced at her watch it was 2 p.m., which meant that Charlotte would be here soon looking a lot worse than Bets herself looked - Charlotte was not a good “morning after the night before” person. That would relieve the boredom for a short while, but Charlotte wouldn’t stay long because of Bets’ terrier Alfred who would be jumping up and trying to get her to play – when she was hung over Charlotte had very little tolerance for Alfred.

Bets was the party animal of the three friends, and the one who tended to attract the most attention from the opposite sex. She was tall and toned with long, dark, naturally curly hair, and after losing both her parents by the time she was eighteen, she was also very strong and ballsy. Bets was so hardly ever without some poor sap sending her flowers, declaring undying love or generally stalking her. Bets was the one who relied on her two best friends the most. She could look after herself no problem at all, but Charlotte and Kerry were the only family she had and she didn’t know what she would do without them.

Disturbing Bets from feeling sorry for herself, the doorbell rang and Bets hauled herself off the sofa to answer it. As she opened the door she laughed, but not too loudly because of her head; Charlotte stood on the doorstep looking like a rag doll that had been dropped in a puddle. Rain was dripping from every protrusion, and by the way she waddled into Bets’ apartment it had obviously also reached her knickers. Charlotte glanced at Bets and groaned; despite her de rigueur Sunday outfit of fleecy pyjamas, blue socks, sloppy old cardigan and scraped back hair, Bets still looked totally stunning. Charlotte sighed at the unfairness of it.