House HuntingMature

I liked the warm fuzzy feeling that came over me during the next couple of days.  I looked forward to going to work because I knew that Andy would make the effort to come and visit me on my lunch break and see how I was.  I knew he got teased rotten about it but in some way that made his visits more special.

He talked about his cases with me, genuinely listening to me and valuing my opinion.  I liked it.

He asked me out on another date, this time to the cinema.  It wasn't a particularly good film, another rom-com with some soppy male actor playing the lead role and an impossibly skinny woman as his love-interest.  It ended with a very predictable 'happily ever after', but I didn't care.  I enjoyed being in Andrew's company.

Yet again he behaved like a gentleman, opening the car door for me and closing it once I was sat down and at the end of the night he walked me to my front door and kissed me goodnight.  Admittedly the kiss wasn't exactly reserved, but he didn't ask to come inside like most guys I've known.  He was probably terrified he'd run into one of my parents.

It was partly because of this that I decided to start house hunting.  I'd been living with my parents for far too long, it was time I found a place of my own.

"I need your help with something," I said to Andy one afternoon while we were eating sandwiches in the lobby of the police building.  "You just have to promise me you won't freak out when I ask you."

"Should I be freaking out?"  He asked calmly.

"No.  It's just that my request might seem a little odd.  It's just I need some help from someone who's a bit wiser than me.  I'm looking to find somewhere to live.  Nothing fancy, I don't have a lot of money, just enough to put down a deposit on a flat.  Could you help me find one?"

"Why did you think that would freak me out?"

"I don't know.  I thought you might think I was asking you to move in with me."

"And are you?"

"No," I replied a little too quickly.  "Sorry, I didn't mean to sound quite so decisive.  It's not that the idea of living with you sounds horrid, I just-"

"You don't have to explain yourself to me," Andy chuckled.  "I still feel like I don't know you very well.  Moving in together would be mad!"

"I'm glad you understand," I said, taking a sigh of relief.  "So you'll help me find somewhere to live?"

"Of course.  Have you started looking?"

"I've picked up some leaflets and have been looking in the newspapers but everything is so expensive.  I don't know how I'm going to be able to afford anything with my income."

"Have you got any of it with you?"  Andy asked.

"Yes," I replied, grabbing my back and bringing out the newspapers I'd been carrying around with me and circling the flats I like the look of.  Andy opened the first one up and began studying my choices.

"Maybe you're aiming too high," he suggested.  "I mean do you really need a two bedroom apartment with a balcony in the centre of town?"

"Probably not," I admitted.  "But a girl can dream."

"Well unless you're going to get a flatmate I would suggest you aim for something smaller.  Now let's have a look and see what we've got."

Our lunchtime chats quickly turned into Andy and I scouring the property pages of the newspapers trying to find small, affordable flats.  But all the places I liked were too expensive and the ones that I could afford just weren't right.

"You need to stop being so picky," Andy protested after a week of searching.  "Whatever you choose, it's not going to be perfect but at least it's a start."

"That's easy for you to say," I complained, "you don't have to live there."

"I know and I don't want you to be living in some falling down apartment either.  I just don't want you to be in debt because you're living somewhere with more space than you need.  I'm not saying live in a squat, just one bedroom would probably be sufficient."

I didn't necessarily agree with what Andy kept telling me, but I knew deep down that he was right.  I had a small budget and living in any city wasn't going to be cheap.

"What about this one?"  I said, pointing to a tiny one bedroom flat.

"I think we've found the first property for you to go and have a look at," Andy replied, a smile on his face.

"Will you come with me?"

"Only if you want me to."

"Of course I want you to be there.  I need a second pair of eyes to help me."

"Then I'll clear my calendar."

The End

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