The penultimate post

Sorry, had to run again. Blogging while traveling makes it difficult to be consistent with the timing of my posts.

So, going backwards.

I guess it’s time to fill you in on HarryPotter.

God this hurts to write about, but I shouldn’t put it off any longer. I’m not writing this to work through things, or to use my posts as pseudo-therapy. I’m writing it because I feel obligated to fill everyone in on what’s happened. This will be one of my last posts ever, and I can’t end it without an explanation.

That day I was offered the option of running the new agency, I left with one plan in mind. Tell HP the good news, us rejoice, and he moves out of the box room. HP didn’t make it home that Friday night and said he’d be back on the Saturday.

By afternoon on Saturday, he had texted that he wouldn’t be home until early evening. So, I popped onto the bus and headed into the office. It was a Saturday, but I was so excited about taking on this new role I wanted to go through some manuscripts I had sitting on my desk. I went into RobotPA’s office cupboard to get some paper for the printer and the door swung shut. Suddenly I could hear a radio that had been left on on Patch’s desk. It was so low, I didn’t hear it when I first walked into the office. It was coming through the vent, and i could hear what was going on in the office better with the door shut than with it open. This explains why RobotPA set up shop in there and never came out. This was how she spied on us…in part. I’m still convinced she was looking at our emails and such.

Anyway, I also found a print out of a report, which must have slid off RobotPA’s desk, because I found it down the side of a shelf. It was RobotPA’s report about the suggested change in management structure, and she suggested that my salary should be increased (keeping it in line with that of a Director for most arts start-ups) but no commission, OR make me a proper partner. There was an email from Dickie attached which said that it was ridiculous to pay me more, as he was not prepared to pay ‘some girl’ that sort of salary. He then stated that he was willing to give me a try because RobotPA suggested it, but he was not willing to support me. He then added, ‘That’s her father’s job.’

I came crashing down. I thought this job was my answer. My way to stay in Dundee and get things moving with HP. But, I couldn’t stay working here. Nothing was going to change. Maybe, I could convince Betsy or London/Paris to hire me but let me work remotely. Or maybe I could just put up with Dickie for a while.

I went home prepared for a talk with HP.

HP was there waiting for me. We sat down on the sofa, I took a deep breath and opened my mouth to say, ‘Let’s get this sorted. Move back into the bedroom. I’m not going anywhere.’

But he spoke first.

‘I think I’m falling in love with someone else.’

The world froze. Everything stopped. Light. Sound. Time. My own breathing. What was happening?

‘You’ve never met her,’ he continued. ‘I know her through a friend from work. We’re not seeing each other or anything. Nothing’s happened. I just don’t think it’s a good idea for you and I to continue, even like this. Not if I have feelings for someone else.’

Oh my god. My world was crashing.

‘But we’ve been hanging out. We’ve been getting along. Things have been getting back to the way they were before.’ I was so confused.

He looked bewildered. ‘I didn’t realise you thought that…I’ve been trying to find a time and a way to tell you over the last couple of weeks. I guess that’s why I’ve been hanging out with you more. But, you know me. I don’t like talking about this sort of stuff…I just didn’t know how to say it. I didn’t realise you thought…’

‘St Andrews Day? That was such a good day? Like it used to be.’

‘I don’t know,’ he said. ‘I wanted to hang out…like friends. I thought if we were mates again, then when I told you, it would be easy.’ He paused, ‘I guess I was wrong.’

I wanted to scream and trash the place, but I was frozen and I couldn’t move.

After a bit of silence, I asked, ‘So all that stuff you said about not liking me because I am negative. What was that? Just a way to take the blame off yourself?’

‘No. That’s all true. I genuinely can’t manage your drama. It was okay when we first met, it was exciting. But now I feel like I’m always on edge because I’m worried you’re going to get worked up over something. Maybe that’s why I’m so attracted to Renee…’

Fucking hell. He said her name. Renee.

‘She…she’s a nurse. She knows how to handle a situation without drama.’

What the fuck was he saying? He was leaving me because I wasn’t boring enough? Because I can’t bandage a head wound with quiet grace?

‘How long have you two been seeing one another?’ I asked.

‘That’s the thing. We’re not seeing each other. I’m not even sure she knows how I feel. I don’t know. We spend a lot of time together. I’m not sure where she and I are at. But, I can’t continue to be with you if I feel this way about someone else. Even if she doesn’t feel that way about me.’

I got up at that statement and walked out of the flat without saying a word more. I couldn’t be in the room with him. I had been utterly betrayed. You don’t fall in love with someone else. You just don’t. It’s wrong. You man up and work on your relationship. You don’t fall in love with a nurse because she’s practical.

In the rain and cold and dark, I stood on the pavement not knowing where I was going. I turned around and looked back up at my window. I couldn’t see HP, but I could see the warm glow of the lamp in the lounge. The flat looked odd. Strange. Like a place I’d never been.

I walked down to Lorainne’s house and she was home. She took me in. Made me a cup of tea, and the first thing she asked after I told her what happened, was ‘What’s your plan?’

I was confused. How could I have a plan? Everyone else was in control. HP controlled my love life. Dickie controlled my work life. How could I plan anything?

Phillip was sitting in the corner quietly drinking a glass of wine and filling in some sort of form. He looked up and said, ‘If that’s what you think then you may as well give up and join a convent. You do have free will you know.’ And he went back to his paperwork.

That night at Lorainne’s was restless. I knew what my plan needed to be, but it didn’t feel right. And what if it wasn’t right? I wanted to be in bed with HP, cuddled up, in my job, working with the authors I love, living in Dundee. Or so I thought.

The next morning I went back to the flat. At the very least I had to make plans for getting to Donna’s wedding, and I needed my diary which was left at the flat.

The flat was empty when I got in but HP had left a letter on the lounge coffee table.

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