“Hello ladies, so good of you to join me, I know you have been looking forward to this for some time, well perhaps it would be more accurate if I was to say that one of you has been looking forward to this meeting and the other has been somewhat apprehensive about doing so. Anyway, let me effect the introductions. Miss Victoria Tim please meet Miss Prudence Spect. Miss Spect this is Miss Tim. I of course need no introduction. Excellent, well now we are all acquainted why don’t we sit down. Are you all right Miss Tim, you seemed to wince when you sat down?”
“There was something sharp on this wooden bench,” Miss Tim explains, ” It is a tack,” she holds up the offending item.
“Oh dear, who could have left that there?”
“You most likely, it is just the type of thing you would do to try and unsettle me, you nasty bastard.”
“Now, now Miss Tim, please, there need not be any need for such language, let us be civil, after all I have always been civil with you have I not?” I declare pleasantly.
“My backside you have been civil you piece of poison. You are the nastiest piece of work I have ever had the misfortune to meet, I hate you.”
“Please Miss Tim, there is no need and I can see you are unnerving Miss Spect here.”
“How come she gets the large comfortable seat and I am perched on this wooden bench thing which is too low down, I am having to crane my neck to speak to you both.”
“Oh I don’t know, I would offer you my seat but it is bolted to the floor as is Miss Spect’s.”
“Well you and I can swap seats then?” Miss Tim suggests to me.
“I cannot do that, I must sit in the middle here and ensure that the conversation is kept civil and polite, I cannot be seen to sit closer to one party than the other.”
“Ever the considerate one aren’t you?” sneers Miss Tim sarcastically.
“But of course dearest Vicky, the voice of reason as you well know.”
Miss Tim screws her face up at my comment and then turns to look across the table at Miss Spect who has sat saying nothing, her face showing a degree of concern at the hostility exhibited by Miss Tim towards me.
“You’ve not said much?” remarks Miss Tim.
“Well no, I haven’t been able to have I. Look Saul I don’t think there is any point in this continuing, you warned me about what she would be like and she has behaved just as you described. Now wonder you left her.”
“It is unfortunate, I thought after all the good times we had together we could at least move on, but it seems that the vitriol she subjected me to when things turned sour, I still do not understand why they did, continues to flow.” I comment.
“Ha, have you heard yourself? My vitriol? My vitriol? You were the one who abused me and called me names, you locked me out of the house and used to take my car keys from me so I could not go anywhere and that is just the tip of the iceberg.”
I shake my head and make tutting noises.
“But Saul just mentioned you had good times together, I know we do, we have wonderful time when we get together, he is so attentive and loving. So generous too, do you like my bracelet?” asks Miss Spect as she thrusts her wrist forward showing off a delicate Tiffany bracelet.
“I had one just like it my dear, he is not one for originality,” mutters Miss Tim.
“Where is it then?” I ask.
Miss Tim hesitates.
“I sold it.”
“Oh how convenient,” I mock giving her a knowing look.
“I did, I did not want any reminder of your hand about me any longer.”
“If he did give you such a bracelet surely you would have kept it, it is so pretty,” smiles Miss Spect presently.
“Not a chance. All the things he gave me I either burned or sold, even though it pains me to admit it that I got rid of some good stuff.”
“It is true dear Pru that I did buy her some gifts, of course nothing as expensive or beautiful as I bought you, a few trinkets and such like but it shows the measure of her nastiness that she would hawk around and destroy my gifts, I know you would never do anything like that would you?”
“Oh goodness no, why would I ever want to get rid of all the wonderful things you have bought for me, you are so kind and thoughtful,” trills Miss Spect.
“Enjoy it while it lasts my dear, it won’t. You know, he had me thinking the same way as the one before me, made her out to be some kind of lunatic alcoholic but I doubt she is, not when I realised how many lies this one tells,” she remarks jabbing a finger towards me.
“Take no notice Pru, Stephanie, my girlfriend before Vicky here was a lovely lady. Unfortunately she had to move away owing to work commitments. I was a little down afterwards but then Vicky arrived very quickly. I was not looking of course, I still had Stephanie very much in my thoughts.”
“Utter nonsense, you came after me. He flattered and chased and promised me all sorts, they do that you see, his kind. He told me Stephanie used to attack him and cut up all his clothes.”
“More lies, when will you ever stop? Spoken to Stephanie have we?” I ask knowing that Miss Tim cannot do so.
“Well no, but the way you went on about here she sounded like she should have been locked up.”
“I never said anything of the sort. You want to think ill of her in order to stop me thinking about her because you wanted me. I fell for you, I will admit that, sorry Pru, but the point of us meeting is to be honest. You asked about Vicky and I know she was very keen to meet you after I sent her some pictures of you and I together. I had to you see. After the awful way I was treated by her, I wanted her to see that she had not destroyed me and that I had found someone who understood me and cared for me, someone who got me, a soulmate if you will.”
“Of course Saul, I understand. I know from what you have told me that you were hurt and vulnerable after what happened. I can see you told me the truth as, well I am sorry to be blunt Miss Tim, but you clearly have issues. I am with Saul now and you may not like that but that is the way it is. You cannot expect to have him back after what you did to him. It was not right to treat someone that way.”
“I don’t know what treacle he has poured in your ears, well actually I do Prudence dear because he did exactly the same to me. Made Stephanie sound a right harpy and then drew me in. Everything was sweetness and light but you will see, it will all turn to shit, he will manipulate you and have you swearing black was white. He is a clever sod I will give him that,” spits Miss Tim.
“I see nothing of what you describe save a kind and loving man who has been badly hurt and I intend to keep him. He loves me and I love him and it is a perfect love, isn’t that the case Saul?”
“Of course my darling Vic, I mean Pru, we have a perfect love and it shall remain ever so.”
“Mark my words missy, he will lift you up so high you cannot see the ground and then he will smash you into the ground and smear you with dirt, he will break you, wound you and strip everything away from you before throwing you to one side,” hisses Miss Tim her eyes blazing with fury.
“Can we go Saul, I have had enough, I said I would meet her and I have and I don’t like her. You don’t need to be around someone so….so toxic.” Miss Spect rises from her seat.
“Ladies please, can we not keep matters calm and have a mature discussion? I have tried to broker a sensible discussion between you both,” I protest raising my hands.
“No I want to go Saul, I don’t like her,” declares Miss Spect.
“That’s right you run away dear and put your head in the sand,” adds Miss Tim. Miss Spect makes for the door.
“I will wait outside Saul, are you coming?”
“Well if you feel this meeting is of no longer any use then of course, feel free to leave, I shall be with you shortly,” I smile pleasantly.
“Go on, run away, you will be sat here in a year’s time Prudence, oh yes you will. You are meeting yourself here you know, meeting yourself,” cries Miss Tim. Miss Spect leaves the room and closes the door.
“Got her brainwashed as well haven’t you, you evil creature,” sneers Miss Tim.
“I have no idea what you are talking about,” I continue to smile as I lean in close. The smile never leaves my face as I speak slowly into Miss Tim’s ear.
“I have you in my eye you crone and if you ever contact her again I will crush you little lady. I know where you have moved to. That red front door has just been painted hasn’t it?”
I step back and look into Miss Tim’s eyes. The flames have been extinguished and that familiar look of fear has returned, the one I know so well. I walk around the table and leave Miss Tim sat completely still, her eyes staring ahead as I know every memory of her torment is now playing through her mind.
“Such a pleasure to see you again, I am sure it won’t be too long before it happens again,” I cry cheerfully and then exit through the door.
Another successful meeting.