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First date Fail Part 3 Fiction
A couple of weeks had passed since Helen's dramatic first date fail. It had literally been the fishing trip from hell that ended with her prospective boyfriend being decapitated by a crocodile.
The crocodile had been hunted down and shot dead and what was left of Ryan's (Helen's prospective boyfriend's) body had been found wedged under a partly submerged fallen tree.
Helen had been utterly exhausted by the initial goings on after the croc attack with countless interviews from everyone ranging from the police, local news, anyone who knew or thought they knew her and even a women's magazine. Now that the story had wound down, her brain wouldn't switch off and she was having nightmares.
She sat in the lunchroom of the haberdashery where she worked and leaned back into the rocker recliner chair indulging in her sixth cup of coffee for the day. Sleep had evaded her the past few nights and the caffeine fix only temporarily cleared the fog in her head. Forgetting that the recliner chair was broken she leaned back too far and tipped the chair completely onto its back launching her coffee into the air and spectacularly splattering the lunch room.
Rita the larger than life owner operator came hurtling in to see what the commotion was, ready to wrestle some uninvited reporter to the ground and then toss him out. She was a tall, slightly, overweight woman, resplendent in chunky costume jewellery and up-styled red hair. Upon seeing the dishevelled Helen and coffee covered surroundings she stifled a giggle and then burst into laughter, despite Helen's predicament she began laughing at herself until tears rolled down her face.
"Well", said Rita, smoothing down her blouse and patting her hair. "For God's sake girlie take a week or two off and get your head together, we can manage without you".
Business had been booming lately since Helen's face had been constantly 'in the news' . People were dropping in for a look and a chat. Quite frankly Rita thought it would be easier if Helen took a weeks break, that way she could talk freely about Helen to her loyal clientele without worrying about Helen over hearing.
"But you can clean this mess up first before you take off", Rita said with a wink and a nod before heading back into the shop.
Helen had moved back in with her parents at her mother's repeated request and was very grateful for it. No bills to pay and she didn't have to worry about waking up her flatmates with her night terrors.
She found herself thinking about Angelo occasionally but hadn't seen him since they were both questioned by the police. She had felt a sense of guilt for having dragged him into the tragedy and thought that she should seek him out and apologise.
Angelo's initial misgivings about Helen had been replaced by curiosity. Her image on TV and the newspaper had been inescapable for at least a week and he was surprised to see how attractive she really was...without the muddy clothes and vomiting. He himself had successfully avoided the media and slipped under the local gossip radar, but he found himself craving information about the mysterious girl that briefly stumbled into his life.
Quite by accident Angelo bumped into Helen's father Ron, at the local Rural shop that sold everything from fencing posts to work wear. Ron was pleased to see Angelo as he knew who he was but never had a chance to have a chat with him and thank him for 'rescuing his daughter'.
Ron persuaded Angelo to come home for a drink and Angelo saw it as an opportunity to find out more about Helen.
There Angelo met Helen's mum Vera and the three got deep into conversation about the on goings of the past weeks, it turned out that the x-prospective boyfriend 'Ryan' had been harassing his ex-girlfriend Tilly up until the night before the ill fated fishing trip. Tilly tracked Helen down after seeing her on the news and let Helen know exactly what sort of a person 'Ryan' was. Apparently he'd gotten drunk one night and had punched Tilly in the face. She'd kicked him of the house they were sharing but he wouldn't give up on her, continuously harassing her with phone calls and turning up outside her work. So she had been relieved to see him dead and didn't want Helen to feel any guilt towards his death.
Helen blundered into the kitchen and was momentarily gobsmacked to see her mum and dad sitting at the table talking to Angelo.
"Oh my God....Hi, how are you?" Helen said, smiling like an idiot.
Angelo stood up from his chair and took her hand in both of his, squeezed it and said, "Good and good to see you".
"What's going on?" Helen asked her father.
"I saw him at Smithy's Rural and brought him home for a chat", Ron said simply.
Helen told them about Rita giving her the rest of the week off and they sat around and discussed Helen's lack of sleep and nightmares (much to her embarrassment). Somewhere in the conversation a suggestion was made that Angelo could take Helen horse riding on his farm, Angelo said, 'tomorrow would be fine'.
First Date Fail 1
- First Date Fail, part 1 short story
A short story about a failed romance, set in coastal, Queensland... Australia.
First Date Fail 2
- First Date Fail Part 2
Set in the 80's in a quiet coastal town in Queensland Helen continues her disastrous social exploits.