I wrote a few more little episodes in the fictional tale that came from Kim’s prompt. These are previous posts in Annabelle’s story:
The front door swung open and then rapid footsteps made their way across the hallway followed by Pearl’s voice announcing they were home. Chris rose to his feet and greeted Pearl as she entered the sunroom. “Hello Christopher. How nice to see you here. How was your camping trip? Is everything alright? You look tired. Where’s Annie?”
The expression on Chris’ face made it very clear that he was anxious. “Has something happened Christopher?”
“I think I upset Annie.”
“There’s only one thing that upsets Annie – oh dear, you don’t talk about Robin did you? Oh dear oh dear, where is she?” Pearl scuttled back out into the hallway and called up the stairs, “Annie, Annie are you in your room?”
Just as Pearl was about to mount the stairs, Annie appeared from the kitchen. “Hello Pearl” I was just putting the kettle on,” Annie said quietly, “shall I make a pot of tea?”
Pearl couldn’t help but notice Annabelle’s tear-stained face, and without realizing that Chris had also stepped out into the hallway just behind her, she asked, “is everything ok sweetie?”
Before Pearl had even finished her question, the front door opened again and Burt stood in the hallway with some shopping bags that he had brought in from the car. “There was a letter for you in the mailbox Annie,” said Burt examining the stamp and the postmark, “It looks as if it is from Switzerland.”
Burt strolled over to Annabelle, without realizing there was an unsettled atmosphere in the hallway and passed the letter over to her. Annie gasped, “It’s Robin’s handwriting.”
“Oh that’s good news. Well don’t keep us in suspense, go on and open it?” cajoled Burt.
“What’s he doing in Switzerland?” murmured Annabelle.
“Is he on holiday there?” suggested Burt.
“He went to school in Switzerland.”
“I thought you said he was English?” asked Chris.
“He is. But he was schooled in Switzerland – his family are kind of well-to-do and sent the children off to school abroad.” explained Annabelle, staring at the envelope the whole time she was talking and avoiding eye-contact with anyone else.
“So does he have friends there he might be visiting dear?” asked Pearl.
“Yes,” sighed Annie, “and his ex-wife is there too.”
“Oh,” cried Pearl, “but Annie, you mustn’t jump to any conclusions.”
“I think I need to be alone for a while. Please excuse me, but I really want to read his letter on my own.”
“Of course dear” Pearl stepped forward and hugged Annie tightly. “Of course you want to be alone. We have had a busy day so we are just going to rest up and won’t be long to bed. We will have a chat tomorrow.”
Annie ran up the stairs, narrowly missing Jeeves, Pearl’s beloved cat, and leaving Burt, Pearl and Chris standing near the foot of the stairwell. They all looked at each other with pensive expressions. “She’ll be fine!” declared Burt.
Moments later, Annie ran back down the stairs with her walking boots in her hand. “I am going for a walk”, she announced. She knelt down in the hallway to put on her boots and lace them and then she hurried out of the house.
“What happened Christopher?” probed Pearl with an inquisitive look.
“Nothing really, I think she misunderstood me. I was just asking how often she spoke to Robin and I then I asked whether they were still in love.”
“Uh oh!” stated Burt before he blew a long whistle, “you wanted to cause a storm did you?”
“Should I go after her?” pleaded Chris.
“I think she wants to be alone” said Pearl.
“You might make it even worse son!” said Burt.
Chris thanked the Jennings but said he ought to go. Out on the road, he looked up and down the street to see which direction Annie was headed, Pearl called out, “she will be headed for Blackwood Hill Chris.” Chris shouted his thanks to Pearl and then started to run up the road towards the main road of the town centre. Just after the first row of shops, there was a very narrow lane, at the end of which was the public footpath, which he knew led out to the open fields on the way up to Blackwood Hill. As he arrived he caught up with Annie when she was still in the bustling main road.
“Annie!” Annabelle kept on walking without any indication she had heard Chris, “Annabelle! Annabelle!”
Without slowing down or turning her head to look at him, Annabelle asked Chris what he wanted.
“I want to talk to you. Will you just slow down for a moment.”
Annabelle did stop walking and with annoyance in her tone said, “We have been talking all weekend Chris. And now, I want to be alone to read Robin’s letter. It’s private. I don’t want to be rude to you, but now is not the time. I’ll catch up with you later.”
“I’m sorry Annie, but I don’t want to just catch up with you later. I don’t want to just hang out with you. I want more. I want you. I’m making a fool of myself running after you because I don’t think that Robin is good for you. I don’t understand why he has this hold on you. Why you don’t seem to want to give me a chance.”
“You don’t understand. You don’t know me. You don’t know Robin. I love Robin. And Chris, it’s none of your business.”
Chris cried out with frustration, “Yes it is. I care about you. Hell! I’m crazy about you. I don’t want you reading that letter and forgetting I exist.”
“Please stop it. Don’t yell Chris, people are staring.”
“I don’t give a damn what anyone else thinks Annie.”
“Well you should!”
Chris felt an explosion of frustration welling up inside. He had no words to reply to Annie. He couldn’t justify intruding when she wanted to be alone. He knew he had no right to interfere with her reading the letter she was clutching. He felt an urge to grab the letter. But instead he found himself putting his hands round Annie’s neck and lurching forward suddenly he pressed his lips against hers and somehow hoped she would understand how he felt.
Annabelle recoiled from Chris and with fury in her voice she said quietly, “You really are crazy. Leave me alone. I thought I could trust you.” and with that she turned and carried on walking along the row of shops. Chris stood there glued to the spot, fighting the urge to pursue her. He watched her turn down the lane and once she was out of sight, it began to dawn on him that he had been presumptuous. Chris noticed a few people staring at him after he had made a spectacle of himself with Annie. He could turn into one of the bar’s and drink away his embarrassment and disappointment, but he decided that now was the time to head for home.
Why had he lost his patience and let frustration get the better of him? It was Robin’s letter. All this time, Robin had seemed unreal. He had been able to spend so much time with Annabelle. He loved her company, he was steadily growing more and more confident that there would come a moment when things would happen between them. But seeing the way Annabelle looked when she saw Robin’s letter, he had realized that she still had no interest in anything developing with himself. Chris felt like an idiot. Annie was unlikely to want to spend any time with him after what he had done.
He heard his mobile phone sound the tone that he had received a text message. In the hopes it might be from Annabelle he rushed to grab his phone. It was from Jenna. Her date had cancelled and she wondered if he was free. He deleted the message instantly.
Claudia kissed Robin tenderly on the cheek and thanked him for lunch. “Darling, let me know when you have told Annabelle.”
“I wrote to her last week Claudy.” replied Robin, “she has probably had the letter by now. I have been worried sick about it all week.”
“Worrying is not good for your health Robin. You have come so far. Just trust that she will be happy that you are in a better place now. If she really cares, she will want what is best for you.”
You can read the next part of Annabelle’s story here:
Kim, the creator of Writer Side of Life has given us some great writing prompts. Several of them appealed to me, but I have only chosen one to work on for now, because I am still playing catch up with blogging, after my trip to Australia:
I chose a prompt under the ROMANCE section: 3. Who is she waiting for?