“I’m taking you for a cup of tea and we’re going right now, no buts,” I take Amy’s hand before she made my excuses.
We started walking when Amy spoke next. Her voice was timed, “I’m sorry for not calling you.”
Amy’s hair covered her face and it danced within the wind so I couldn't see her expression. How caring I thought, to apologize for not calling when her aunt passed away, the heartache that Amy was going through and still wanting to make amends for something so trivial.
“No apology needed.” I moved my thumb over her knuckles noting the coolness of her skin, “it’s not far, just around this block.”
Sunny day’s tea room, was a novelty place to find in the states and prided themselves on be authentic, having a range of english teas and homemade cakes that would normally be served with afternoon tea.
We were the first customers of the morning, greeted warmly as we sat at the window table and made our order to the cheerful over fifty year old woman.
“I’ve never been here before,” Amy admitted, her eyes taking in everything.
“Please tell me you’ve had english tea before and not that rubbish ‘iced tea’ from Starbucks?”
Amy looked down playing with her hair, “erm…once or twice maybe. I think I liked it”
I laughed surprising myself, “then why did you suggest tea the other day?”
“I picked up the hint of british accent in your voice.” Amy looked straight into my midnight eyes as she told me this.
I sat back in my chair, “observative of you to pay attention, some of my staff think I'm Austrian and they worked with me for a few years.”
“Force of habit I guess, I'm a teacher after all and have to pay attention.”
Our tea arrived then set out nearly in the tray, I opened the tea pot making sure the teabag was brewing nicely, “would you take sugar?”
“I think one will be enough thank you.” It was nice to see a smile on Amy’s face as she watched me with the tea pot making the tea for us.
“Don't drink just yet or else you will burn your tongue,” I advise setting the cup and saucer down.
The woman brought us our toast and jam, Amy picked the toast first layering it with jam. I admired how Amy didn't care about eating in front of a man, like so many women of today and not that she was stick thin or large she was well balanced of curves and healthy.
I took a slice of toast and a small bit of jam taking a bite, enjoying the sweet tang of the strawberry jam before I swallowed. Amy picked up her cup of tea, lightly blowing the cup before she took it to her lips and I watched the tea go down her throat.
“This is really nice, thank you,” Amy took another sip of tea and I went back to my toast distracting myself.
After we finished our toast, Amy dug around in her bag and pulled out her phone. I poured us another cup of tea when I saw the tears form within her eyes.
“Amy love, what's happened?”
“Oh it's,” Amy gasped trying to wipe her eyes forgetting that I was sat here. “My aunt’s nurse has made arrangements, the care unit are coming to collect my aunts equipment and the nurse has cleaned and left the house. Wishing me well and… That I can still see her if everything becomes too much.”
I stood, going to Amy, couching by her side and took her hands. “Your aunt would only want you to cry happy tears. Hey less of this, I want to see that smile from 15 minutes ago and yeah I can see a glimmer of it now.” I slowly ran my finger by her lips, feeling her intake of breath and locked my eyes with hers.
The high pitch voice floated down the street warning me of what was to come. Then she came inside, rabbiting away on her phone and headed straight to the till ordering flavoured take away tea. A mixture of emotions played across Amy's face and I noted her heart speed up.
“Amy! How wonderful to see you again.”
“Show time,” I said under my breath and smiled grasping Amy’s phone fast.
Whiles I was was still on the floor I quickly put my number in Amy's and reading hers in return.
“Tea for one is it?” From the snide comment from Cassie I made my grand appearance.
“Here's your phone love,” I stood from the floor, placing her phone on the table and turned facing Cassie. “Good morning.”
“My phone?” Amy’s puzzled voice brought my full attention back to her.
“Pink is not my colour, sweetheart.”
“Amy,” Cassie's voice cooed as if she was speaking to a child. “Is this the famous, hotel owner, Alex?”
“Singing my praises again love?” I asked full of charm and raised my eyebrow at Amy.
Amy shook off her shock and took my lead. “Cassie, meet my husband Alex.”
Cassie came forward, wanting a closer look no doubt. “Well this is a surprise.” Isn't it just. “You’re even more dashing than what Amy said.”
“Darling, time is creeping on and you said your manager needed to meet with you this morning.” Amy said glancing at her watch before looking at me with pleading eyes.
“Oh yes I remember now, I'd be lost without you,” I said to Amy taking her left hand kissing. Amy blushed and kept hold of her left hand as I turned to Cassie. “We must be going, till next time, Cassie.”
“Yes, I hope to see you again, Alex and Amy.”
We made a quick exist then and both gave a sigh of relief.
I was busy texting on my phone as she was building up the courage to explain herself to me. I had other ideas. A taxi was coming down the street, I flagged it down and opened the door for Amy.
“Cassie is staring,” I said as Amy got inside first and I followed until I saw that Cassie was out of view. “Take this beautiful lady anywhere she needs to go.” I told the taxi driver and handed him some money.
“Alex, I didn't mean for this to happen.”
I took hold of Amy’s worried face. “Everything happens for a reason.” I got out of the taxi and walked away sending the text message as her taxi drove off.
Beauty in red Amy, join me tomorrow night at my hotel and let me know of your address I will be sending a car to come and collect you. 7:00pm.
Do not stress, worry, fret, and most importantly let me down tomorrow night.