Nikki Harrington

Tommy thinks about his past and his present.
An established relationship story.
Written: August 2008. Word count: 500.


He remembers her always being there for him after Helen had been killed. Willing to listen to him talk about Helen; willing to just sit and talk about nothing in particular.


He remembers the first evening he'd turned up at her flat, how flustered she'd been. How she'd invited him in, fed him beans on toast, and listened as he talked about the baby Helen had lost; how that was when things first started to go wrong.


He remembers the first time he'd asked her out for dinner, saying it'd been a long, tiring day and neither of them should have to cook. She'd hesitated at first, but then she'd smiled and accepted.


He remembers the first gift she bought him (well the second if you counted the dreadful mugs she'd brought Helen and he as a house-warming present) a garish tie. So bright he almost needed sunglasses to look at it. But he'd thanked her and had worn it, and if anyone looked twice, he made sure they didn't look a third time.


He remembers the second gift she bought him: another tie. This one wasn't so garish or bright; far more 'him'. As he'd opened the parcel and saw it, he'd nearly protested, telling her she had to remain 'her' not change, because it was her he'd fallen in love with. But he didn't, because he saw her face, saw how uncertain she was. So instead he kissed her lightly and thanked her.


He remembers telling her about the car accident that had made his closest friend a cripple. He remembers telling her he still hadn't forgiven himself. He remembers her reaction. An hour later she was still explaining how as Simon had long forgiven him, not that he'd ever blamed him in the first place, he should 'get over it'.


He remembers the time she talked to him about her parents and dead brother, telling him that for years she'd both loved and hated the boy. How she'd felt her parents would rather she had died. He remembers holding her as she cried over her confession. He remembers that was the first time they slept together; not made love, simply slept together.


He remembers the day he proposed to her. How at first she'd refused, pointing out that it was okay for an Earl to slum it with a girl-friend, but not to marry her. He remembers that was the only time he'd ever, in their personal relationship, lost his temper with her. He remembers her face as she listened to his out-pouring, before she finally just smiled and said 'yes'.


He remembers how much his knuckles had hurt after he'd made it crystal clear no one derided his fiancée; the woman he loved. He remembers how angry she'd been with him, but he also remembers how secretly touched she'd been.


As, with Simon at his side, he turns to watch her walk down the aisle towards him, he knows together they will build ever-lasting happy memories.




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