Lucy shot her friend a withering look, and was pleased that Becky at least had the good grace to look ashamed. This of course confirmed to Lucy that she had heard the comment she thought she had…Becky had just announced to everybody that Lucy still had a plastic, waterproof sheet on her bed!
Now Lucy had a vague idea of how poor Daniel must have felt a few moment earlier when his embarrassing little problem had been the centre of attention, and she tried to splutter out an explanation, but tripped over her words and just ended up all of a fluster.
“I..But…It’s not…oh, Becks, why?!”
Looking crestfallen, Becky lowered her head. “I’m sorry Luce, I didn’t mean to embarrass you, I was only trying to help Dan feel better – I thought, well no, I didn’t think did I. I’m sorry.”
Lucy steeled herself, looking again at Daniel who smiled at her, offering all the encouragement she needed. “Ok, Dan here has been big enough to ‘come clean’, so I guess I can do the same. Yes, Becky’s right, I do have a plastic sheet on my bed. It’s actually my brothers, but he doesn’t need it anymore. And I’ve never been a bedwetter so I’ve never had one before, but…I can’t believe I’m actually saying this out loud…I had a one off, freak accident after a nightmare and Mum insisted on moving the protector to my bed ‘just in case’.”
“Well done Lucy.” Dan was the one squeezing her hand this time.
Noticing an awkward atmosphere beginning to descend, Em decided it was time to move the conversation on. “Ok, I think that’s enough embarrassing talk for now, unless you want to admit to secretly wearing nappies or something Becks? Hahahaha.”
It worked, the frostiness was broken again, and all 4 were soon laughing and chatting about other things. It wasn’t long before they were interrupted again, but this time it was by a call from downstairs.
“Kids, come out and join us, lunch is nearly ready.”
—— Back at home, Jack was counting down the minutes until his friend arrived, disappointed that Lucy was already off having fun whilst he was stuck at home, bored. His Mum had told him that she was planning on taking them somewhere for the afternoon, but wouldn’t tell him where, just saying it was a ‘surprise’.
The clock ticked agonisingly slowly, and Jack couldn’t settle to anything. He tried reading a book, but couldn’t concentrate. Then he flicked on the TV, but it was all boring. And even his games console didn’t hold it’s usual appeal, and after a few minutes he set it aside in frustration.
Then he heard it. A rat-a-tat-tat on the front door. Not the doorbell he’d been expected, but nevertheless in signalled the arrival of guests, and, he hoped, the end of his boredom!
Mum wouldn’t let him answer the door on his own, which was probably fair enough given he was only 7, but it didn’t stop him from springing the length of the landing, zooming down the stairs, and, after tripping over his own shoes which had been discarded at the bottom in the hallway, landing in a spectacular knot of bent body parts right beside the door, just as Lesley was opening it and welcoming Tom and his Mum in.
“Oh my dear, are you ok?” Tom’s Mum Debbie looked concerned, and bent down to help Jack untangle himself.
Tom couldn’t do anything for laughing, the sight of his friend stayed across the floor had really tickled him. And even Lesley had to stifle a giggle, pointing out just how many times she’d told him not to run down the stairs.
Satisfied that nothing was badly damaged, other than a bruised ego, Jack and Tom quickly disappeared upstairs, not wanting to get caught up in a boring ‘mum’ conversation, whilst Lesley invited Debbie through to the kitchen for a cuppa whilst they exchanged details, in case of emergency.
“Thanks so much for offering to take Tom overnight, Lesley, I really do appreciate it. This weekend would have been an absolute nightmare otherwise, having to travel across the country at such short notice. Honestly, I love my job but it can be a real pain sometimes!”
“Oh don’t be silly Debbie, it’s no problem at all. My Lucy is away at a friends sleepover anyway, so it’s only me and Jack here, and he’d be bored stupid on his own. For all him and Lucy wind each other up, they’re great company for each other…but I think she’d have drawn the line at taking him long to a girlie sleepover, haha.”
“Oh I’m sure! And if Jack’s anything like Tom, he’d have had a fit at the mere suggestion anyway.”
Both ladies chuckled and nodded in agreement.
“So, Debbie, tell me what I need to know. Any dietary requirements or medical conditions I need to be aware of?”
“Nope, well, other than being a bit of a fussy bugger when it comes to vegetables that is. He eats most things, in fact he eats me out of house and home, haha. And fortunately he’s in good health, touch wood, so no worries there either.”
Lesley smiled on hearing all of this, it certainly made her weekend easier if she wasn’t worrying about medication or anything like that. “Perfect! I was thinking of taking the boys out for the afternoon, perhaps to the theme park a couple of towns over, is that ok with you? I figured that if I wear them out I may have a chance of getting a couple of hours sleep tonight.”
“Ooh, good thinking! I remember the last time Tom had a friend stay over, they were still clamouring about at gone 3am, wish I’d thought of tiring them out. Yes of course that’s fine with me, here let me give you some money towards the cost.”
“No, put your purse away Debbie. This is my treat for the kids. I’m sure they’ll have an absolute ball.”2
Audio Version of Chapter