“So, you’re not mad I stuck you with paperwork?”
“Baby, the only other thing I’d have been doing is sneaking up to see you. Your loss.” She teased and I gave her a nudge.
“You’d be too busy anyway.”
“True.” She kissed my forehead. “Thank you. For this. It’s a great way to spend my last night here for a while.”
“Mmmhmm… don’t think this is all you’re doing.”
“Not more surprises?” She asked, pretending to be harassed.
“Not unless you call sex a surprise.”
“Pretty sure that’s illegal.”
“Pretty sure you’re sick.”
“Pretty sure you still love me anyway.”
“Don’t be so sure.” I winked, patting her bum and walking over to the drink table.
“Hi.” I turned and found Kate smiling at me.
“Hey Kate, how are you?”
“Good thanks. You?”
“Great. You enjoying the party?”
“Mm, last time I was at one as good as this it was… yours.”
“Yeah that was a good night. Want a drink?”
“Sure thanks.” She took the drink I offered her and then we both turned to lean on the table. “So have you met Sam’s best mate yet?”
“Mm, no, actually I haven’t really met any of her friends. I asked her to hold off after the ambush with her mum and then we just never really got round to it. You know, exams, fallouts… too many things in the way.”
“So today is the big friends ambush?”
“Pretty much.” I grinned nervously.
“Well I might be able to give you a hand. Her best friend is Gray Martinez, he and his wife are over there.” She pointed at a tall mixed race man wearing a dark shirt, jacket and jeans, and the woman next to him who was wearing a pink summer dress. “They’re super rich, he’s a laugh but the wife is a little… uptight. Rich family upbringing, that sort of person. They have a kid who I do believe is the one playing with Anna’s hair…” She chuckled as we watched a cute five year old pretending Anna’s hair was a wig, only a few steps from his parents. Anna’s face was a picture, a mixture of ‘oh how adorable is he?’ and ‘ow! Little bugger!’ I giggled and continued to listen to Kate. “Then there’s her other friends from University, Myra and Lexi, who are both incredibly clever by the way, so go armed with a dictionary. Lexi is funny, Sam calls her and Gray ‘the terrible two’ when they get together, and Myra is very direct, arty… ethereal about everything. But she’s alright, once you get to know her. They’re there look, next to Sam. Lexi’s the hot one.” I peered over and saw Lexi, gorgeous with dark eyes and dark hair and wearing jeans and a waistcoat with, by the looks of it, nothing underneath it. She carried it off though, especially next to Myra, who wore leggings and a lengthy t-shirt and had her red hair pulled up in a crazy bun. She looked artistic, and I noticed she had chopsticks shoved in the bun she styled. She was cute, but nothing compared to Lexi. Sam was chatting happily to them, but she glanced over and saw me watching and gestured that I should go and join them.
“I’m being summoned. Wish me luck.” I smiled at Kate who grinned and told me I’d be fine. I went over and Sam wrapped her arm around my shoulders.
“Lexi, Myra, I want you to meet Cara, the tease that’s responsible for this afternoon’s festivities.”
“Nice to meet you Cara. It’s nice to know Sam’s got someone who’s keeping her on her toes.” Lexi grinned, sticking her hand out for me to shake.
“Thanks, I like to keep her occupied. Stops her from getting in to trouble.”
“Myra. Good to meet you. You have beautiful eyes.”
“Um, thank Myra, you two.”
“You’ll have to forgive her sweetheart.” Lexi said, putting her arm around Myra. “She’s always looking out for her next muse.” She gave Myra a kiss on the cheek and looked at her fondly before looking back at me. “So Sam tells me you sing, dance and you’re at uni doing English?”
“Yeah, that’s me.”
“And you’re in a band? That’s cool, I always wanted to be in a band.”
“Why didn’t you?” I asked.
“She couldn’t sing for shit.” Sam chuckled and earned herself a mock punch to the shoulder.
“Hey hey hey, what’s all this? Why is this lunatic meeting Sam’s girl before me?” Gray appeared, throwing his arms around Sam and Lexi’s shoulders and giving them quick pecks on the cheek. “What’s up sweetness? I’m Gray, the better looking best friend.” He stuck out his hand and I shook it, grinning.
“Cara.” I introduced myself while Lexi elbowed him in the ribs.
“Boy if you think you’ve got better looks than me-“
“-Hell I know I’m better looking than you girl.”
“Don’t you girl me!” Lexi replied and leapt on him. They proceeded to have a pretend ninja fight complete with sound effects next to us.
“Sorry.” Sam muttered.
“They’re brilliant.” I chuckled, watching Gray take a fake hit to the chest and go down swinging. I saw his wife watching disapprovingly, her son now trapped, I mean held, safely in her arms.
“They’ve been like that since the moment I introduced them.”
“Really? The very moment?”
“Pretty much. Lexi introduced herself with ‘hey, lexi, the best friend. If you even think about checking out my ass I’ll take you down.’”
“How did that go down?”
“Well he gave me a look like ‘is she for real?’ and I explained that she’s… well… Lexi, so he just bounced back with ‘and if I see you checking out any of my women I’ll ninja slap you to next century, girl or no girl.’ Went down pretty well actually. The alcohol may have helped.”
“That sounds so good!” I laughed. “I can’t believe I asked you to hold off introducing me.”
“Why would you do that?” Myra asked and I jumped, having forgotten she was there.
“Her mum ambushed me; I got a bit nervous about meeting anyone else. Then things just got busy. But I’m glad I’ve met you now.”
“Me too. Have you ever considered being a model?”
“I don’t think I’m tall, pretty or skinny enough.”
“I mean an art model. I’ve love to paint you. Sketch you. I’m in town for the week, maybe I could take a day or two of your time? It pays.”
“Um, yeah, sure. Woah, thanks.”
“You know for a fact I’m going to buy them don’t you Myra?”
“Sure Sam, I’m banking on it.” She grinned happily, then went to save her girlfriend from Gray.
“Not all of them surely?” I asked once we were alone.
“Just the ones I like. We can add them to that album you still haven’t got around to making.” She winked.
“Ah shoot. I’d forgotten. Well, something for your housewife to do while you’re away on business honey.” I winked.
“Just as long as I come back to a cooked meal and a clean house.” She teased me back.
“Oh baby, if you come back to anything less I’ll expect your boss to spank me properly.” I whispered, winking and walking away before she could splutter out a response. Her cheeks were red but her eyes sparkled with a challenge.
“What’s going on here?” I sprang on Anna and Megan who were making out.
“Fuck Cara.” Anna muttered, holding her hand over her chest.
“You bit my lip!” Megan grumbled, checking her lip for blood.
“Sorry hon.” Anna muttered, kissing her again.
“Get a room.” I teased.
“Like you can talk.” Liam chuckled, flopping down on a chair, beer in hand.
“Well, who could resist?” I grinned, glancing over at Sam who was now wrestling Gray over a beer.
“Me, not my type.”
“Oh yeah, forgot lesbian wasn’t your type. Strange that isn’t?” I joked, grabbing a beer from the pack they’d coveted and breaking it open on the side of the chair.
“Funny, lesbian seems to be Jak’s type.” Liam replied, shoving Jak who’d just come up for air mid snog session with Ali.
“Shut up man!” He grinned while Ali laughed.
“So what are you going to do without Sam for two weeks Cara? I mean, I’m sure Ann Summer’s will profit, but…” Callum said, ducking as I threw a cushion at him, indignant.
“I’m going to be a model for Sam’s artist friend, get a job and spend loads of time with you lot.”
“Oh god no, quick, stop Sam leaving now! Offer her anything!” Liam yelled, and I leapt on him. I got him in a headlock, but he broke through before I could do anything else and sandwiched my arms to my side. “Someone tickle her.”
“Nooooo!” I yelled as they set upon me.