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.oh, wait a sec, it has to be Damien Delaney.”“Got it in one.I think he really likes you, Amelia.He says he is going to call you this week to arrange the tea date so you can meet his mum.Do not roll your eyes up to heaven,”she goes on, suddenly switching to her Cross Mummy voice, the way only parents can.“I thought we agreed you were going to give this guy a whirl.A proper whirl.”“I know.I will.I promise.”“That’s the girl.Oh, and I have more news.In fact, this should have been the first item of news.In fact, I’m starting to feel like the latest edition of something, which is a new experience for me.Normally I’m so dependent on you guys to keep me in the know.”“Oh, I love news.Especially if it’s about other people.”“Two words for you.Mr.Intense.”“What!!”“I know exactly what he’s been doing all these years.Even better, I think I know how you can contact him!”“How did you.? What do you.? But I thought—”186Claudia CarrollJust then, we hear Joshua bawling from the playroom downstairs, followed by Emma screaming at Ulrika, “I never even touched him, hardly at all.That’s tomato sauce, not blood, on his face.”In a trice, Caroline’s up and gone off to troubleshoot.“Do not move from that armchair.I’ll be right back, and I’ll fi ll you in.Don’t suppose you’d care to adopt one of my children, by any chance? I’ll pay you cash.”Oh, dear.I really am going to have to go on rhinoceros tranquilizers or some other max-strength medication to stop all these flashbacks.The Time: December 1988.The Place: Dramsoc, the UCD drama society’s rehearsal space.The Occasion: The annual college fashion show, which we’re all out in force for, because this year, Caroline is modeling in it, along with my boyfriend, whom I call Simon, but who everyone else calls Mr.Intense.Jamie and I get there early, which turns out to be not such a good idea, as we end up sitting beside Mrs.Egan, Caroline’s mother.Did I tell you about Mrs.Egan? She’s like a cross between Margaret Thatcher and Lady Bracknell, with shades of the Wicked Witch of the West thrown in for good measure.Scary, scary lady, ferociously proud of her beautiful daughter and basically of the opinion that no man is good enough for her.Not even the lovely Mike, who’s sitting farther down the row from us.“Another few minutes, and you’d have been late,” she sniffs as we take our seats beside her.Remind Me Again Why I Need a Man�187“Sorry, Mrs.Egan,” we both mumble, instantly regressing back to a pair of ten-year-olds.I don’t know what it is; she just has that effect on people.Jamie says that I should console myself, smug in the knowledge that I once peed into the water feature in her immaculate garden when I was seven.“Oh, there’s Mike.” I nudge Jamie, waving down to him.“Hi! Isn’t this just so exciting?”Mike nods and smiles back at us, but looks a bit put off by Mrs.Egan’s frostiness too, and in fairness, you couldn’t really blame him.“A dentistry student,” she mutters sotto voce, but clearly intended for Mike to overhear.“If I’ve told Caroline once, I’ve her a thousand times.A dentist will always be one down from a doctor.”We’re all far too scared of her to answer back, but the sting is fully felt, especially by poor Mike, who visibly red-dens, but stays furiously focused on the catwalk ahead.“Bon soir, mes amis,” says Rachel, breezing in and looking breathtakingly amazing in a fanny-pelmet leather mini and an oversize black leather jacket, a black beret, fi shnet tights, and stilettos.“Everyone, this is Chris tian, Chris tian, this is everyone,”she says carelessly, introducing us to the guy she has in tow.He is utterly gorgeous, handsome in a Mediterranean way, with black eyes, olive skin, and a Kevin Costner haircut.Very, very sexy.We all shake hands, unable to take our eyes off him, particularly Jamie.“Where are you from?” Mrs.Egan asked him imperiously, with this killer glance she has that can kill at ten paces.“He’s Parisian, but you’re wasting your time talking to him,” Rachel answers on his behalf [ Pobierz całość w formacie PDF ]