by S C Richmond
Carl hurried towards her and swept her into his arms.
“You look lovely, so beautiful, that dress, is it one of George’s grandsons designs?”
She wriggled free, blushing “Yes” she stammered. She was about to tell Carl about her wonderful discovery but something stopped her. Something wasn’t right… Carl sounded strange, something was up. He always seemed to appear, no matter where she was, she was beginning to feel as if he was watching and waiting for her. It was beginning to make her feel uneasy.
“What time shall I pick you up tonight Cinders? He laughed at his own joke. The girl was no longer excited about going but knew she had to make the effort.
‘Is seven ok?”
Carl nodded and smiled “seven it is.”
The girl wandered home her thoughts all in a whirl… who was he? She also decided that she would visit the shop in the morning to collet her clothes and see if she could persuade George to tell her more,,, What was he afraid of?
The night passed in a whirl. Carl was very thoughtful and attentive, she had so many thoughts going round and around in her head that she really didn’t notice. Maybe she would find her parents. At last she felt there was some hope. Something she hadn’t felt before.
Carl had noticed a change in her, she was preoccupied and no longer hanging on to his every word. He also noticed the admiring glances she was getting from other men and he didn’t like it one bit.
Home at last she kicked of her shoes and slipped out of her dress. She hung it on a hook on the outside of the wardrobe door. She fell asleep dreaming about her dress and the young man who made it and also about what an adventure she had today and tomorrow she may find out a bit more about her mother. For the first time in a long time she slept like a baby, a small smile playing on her lips she dreamed about what she may find out and tonight those nightmares didn’t appear.
Day dawned and she was up and dressed in no time at all. She left the flat and almost skipped to the shop she was so happy. Rounding the corner she noticed that all the shutters were still down. As she drew closer she could see a bag propped against the door. It was her clothes. There was also a note from George telling her how beautiful she had looked in the dress and how like her mother she was but also mentioning that due to a family crisis the shop would be closed for a while. It was almost as if he was saying goodbye to her. She stood and burst into tears.
Out of sight across the road, stood Carl… watching.