She picks meat that is all in little bits.

StoryKettle » BETTY » leotard

Copyright © 2015, Michael M Wayman

Everything is grey, it is dark, he is unhappy. It is cold, the days are short, it is Monday, nothing good on TV, it is damp, it would probably rain soon, he is unhappy.

The day had been bad so far, repairing a badly installed boiler in a cold and damp and dark cellar. Not that he had done any repairing, his job was to hold things and make the tea, he was a trainee plumber – on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays, on Thursdays and Fridays he went to college.

The other guys made fun of him, especially because he lived with his “little sister”, was he doing terrible things to her? They were plain nasty to him. But time to go home.

And home is a very small apartment and there is she. She is the best thing in his life, but would she be there when he got back?

No, she isn't. He is upset, had she left him? He switches on the TV, nothing good on.

“And now we bring you a very interesting story. This video was taken by a security camera outside the First People's Bank in Thisstown an hour ago. Keep your eyes on the bottom of the picture. A little girl appears walking on crutches, she has a leg in plaster. A man runs out of the bank with a very full bag.”

“She quickly shoves one of her crutches in front of his legs. The bank robber goes flying and lands on the ground. His bag flies into the air, opens and fills the air with paper money.”

“He tries to stand, but she thumps him stupid. She calmly leaves him on the ground, everybody else is collecting the money. She has disappeared.”

He does not have time to think, somebody is kissing the back of his neck, somebody is massaging his back, he feels happier.

She does not know why he is often unhappy, but she does know that the refrigerator is nearly empty.

He stands up and stares at her, he wants to grab her and hug her, but...

She laughs, she shows him her left leg, she has been to the hospital to remove her plaster cast. The leg is white and thin and kissed all over by him.

He notices that she is still wearing her anorak and holding a shopping bag, he grabs his coat and they walk to the supermarket round the corner.

She picks meat that is all in little bits. He picks a bottle of cheap red wine. But what is that? A special offer. A leotard girl's size. What colour? She holds up three. He chooses a white one.

Back home she prepares a lasagne and pops it into the oven. She slips into the leotard and does a slow dance in front of him. He opens the wine and they drink out of one glass. He is happier, she is happy, almost always.

Paul decides to call her Clementine.