Fiction by HS Quarmby
I was new to Paris and in love with it, but like many French lovers, it was testing my infatuation. I was dead broke. The little money I was earning though baby sitting and odd jobs was just stretching to cover the rent, food being an extra luxury. So, when one afternoon a confident stranger in the park asked me out for a drink, the first thing I thought was, free alcohol!
The stranger, who was now on a first name basis, was generic looking, lacking distinguishing features, but the accent got me and so did the few years seniority.
We sat in the red and black bar making small talk, nothing thrilling, but as I drank more of the wine, he definitely became more interesting. I didn’t resist after a while, when he leaned in for the kiss.
Back to his place. The sex was mediocre. But I was drunk so moaned too loud and fell off the bed.
His blaring alarm woke me the next morning. I was cross at myself for not waking earlier to sneak out. I hate morning conversation, especially morning after the night before, awkward breakfast conversation, so I pulled on my clothes and politely declined anything cooked to eat.
As I was chugging the orange juice forced upon me, I spied half a packet of Princes chocolate biscuits sitting on the side board. Biscuits for breakfast were still an alien concept for me but suddenly all I could think of was the hard crunch of the top and bottom meeting in the soft middle of creamy, sweet chocolate.
I politely asked if I could grab a few for my journey home, and I was handed the whole packet. I fled, holding my prize, proud of myself.
I received a text a couple of days later inviting me round again. I was ironing shirts, not my own, and I felt a stab of excitement. But it was not the sex or the guy or the conversation that sprang into my mind, it was the chocolate biscuits, the food I could not afford, a packet the same price as a week’s worth of rice, the staple of my diet at that time.
I accepted the invitation. Without the lubricant of alcohol, the sex was boring and impersonal. As I lay on my back, I fantasised about my Prince.
Chomping my treats the next morning, the thought struck me that I was sleeping with a guy just to get his biscuits.
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Young and innocent I left my small home town in England to go travelling and I don't think I have stopped yet. Currently in France, I write about my travels, experiences and the fictional stories inspired by them. You can read a full selection of these on hsquarmby.wordpress.com.