Last night Liam met up with Amy again after, oh a number of months. The last time he had asked her over, it had been to a meal at his flat which ended not with dessert but some role playing adult fun. This time they met at a restaurant on the edge of Bloomsbury which was heaving with late night shoppers. Later they went on to a pub which was far too noisy for quiet conversation and finished off in an Italian cafe for a cup of hot chocolate and a proper tête-à-tête that didn’t involve yelling into each other’s ears.
So they gave each other the lowdown on their summers – hers of travelling and work, candidly including descriptions of some of her dating adventures, his on the tentative side as he lamented the lack of flirtation in his life since he was busy heading several groups and managing research into the manipulation of subatomic structures. He seemed keen to hear why she had decided to stop online dating and was drawn to her tales of unrequited love.
The idea that he might lend a counselling ear appealed to him and he admitted as much. At the same time as admiring the confidence and optimism she exuded, he detected a vulnerability in her makeup from her narrative. He made light of the fact that he might be useful to her as he enjoyed the role of saviour if nothing else. She was quite sympathetic to this as she recognised too that the attraction Goran held for her was his fragile marriage – and her belief that she played a part in shoring up his courage.
At the cafe he received a call from his sister postponing their Saturday Christmas shopping date and when he hung up was able to confirm their film date which had been loosely hinted at earlier in the evening. As they got on the tube northwards he kissed her lightly on the lips goodbye when they eventually went their separate ways.