Martha found loneliness the hardest to bear – it caused the days to become endless, filled with mundane tasks, waiting for Thomas to come home. On numerous occasions, she had come close to answering Laura’s repeated texts and calls but changed her mind at the last minute.
A dinner party gave Martha something else to think about.
My manager is coming round tomorrow, and it’s important we both make a good impression.’
‘Is this about your promotion?’ Martha said, her grin spread just beneath her eyes.
‘I’m nearly there Martha, but I’m only on the shortlist. I can’t afford for things to go wrong.’
‘I’ll go shopping tomorrow, is there anything special you want me to buy.’
‘Some good quality wine, I’ll give you some extra money, but I don’t want you spending it on rubbish.’
‘Only the best, I promise.’
When Tabitha spotted her in the supermarket, while shopping for the ingredients, Martha had no choice but to go over.
‘Nanny!’ Tabitha’s excited screams filled the whole store.
Martha looked around nervously; she couldn’t ignore Laura, that wouldn’t be fair. Making sure there were no familiar faces she crept cautiously towards them.
‘Nanny,’ Tabitha sounded deadly serious, ‘Mummy won’t let me buy sweets.’
Tabitha always made her smile. For some strange reason, it didn’t matter they were in a public place anymore. She slipped easily into the role of doting grandmother.
‘Excuse me.’ A tall, well-dressed woman moved past them to get a bottle of red wine from the top shelf and gave them a warm smile in thanks.
‘How are you?’ Laura asked quietly.
‘Not bad love, just getting a few things in for a business meal for your dad.’ She tried to keep her voice steady. ‘He may get a promotion.’
The pupils in Laura’s eyes thinned until nothing but the white could be seen. ‘A lot of work for you I dare say.’