DISCLAIMER: Not mine. I promise I'm only borrowing them and will return them to their rightful owners whenever they ask for them back. My imagination took a flight of fancy.....my bank account stayed empty. (Not mine, no profit, just some day-dreaming I wrote down - everything belongs to the BBC and/or Sally Wainwright unless it's a Blackadder reference in which case, it's Ben Elton and Richard Curtis).
AUTHOR'S NOTE: If you wish to read it as part of the Some Dances series in chronological order, it should be read after Part 2 of 'My Funny Valentine' and before 'Marking Time'. This is gentle fluff - it has neither angst nor high drama but gently potters along and is almost certainly a little bit sugary and 'neat', but that's what this pairing triggers for me and I make no apology, only this comes with added mirth and smut (only a little). You might also need to know that 6.30pm on weekdays sees BBC1 showing a regional news programme that, depending on the region, sometimes has some very weird stories. For Harrogate, the programme is called 'Look North'.
ARCHIVING: Only with the permission of the author.
FEEDBACK: To ncruuk[at]gmail.com
Some Dances in Harrogate
"Hello?" called out Caroline, kicking off her black stilettos as she hung up her camel coat and, running her fingers through her hair to dislodge the snow that had settled, moved further into the house, only to stop at the sitting room door.
"Hi." It was a testament to the changes in modern viewing habits that she was surprised to see the television screen actually showing television at ten to seven on a Friday evening. Whilst it wasn't unusual for the set to be on and Lawrence to be in front of it, she was more used to having to glance up to check the suitability of the video game or DVD certainly not Look North!
"Kate's upstairs " volunteered Lawrence, habit forcing his gaze back to the screen that appeared to be showing pictures of a bus stuck under a railway bridge, information that caused Caroline to smile, " but Gran wants to talk to you, asked you to pop by as she won't come out now it's dark and snowing," he added, missing that same smile be wiped from her face.
"She say why?" Heading back out into the snow appealed even less to Caroline than it evidently did to Celia hadn't her mother heard of the telephone?
"Would you have listened if she'd said anything?" Lawrence had a habit of assuming someone else was listening on his behalf whenever his grandmother stopped by which, if Caroline was honest, had been true before William went off to university even when engrossed in a book, he seemed to absorb the conversations happening around him, letting his little brother off the hook on more than one occasion.
"Is that a sheep herding geese?" Caroline was distracted by the unusual sight on the television.
"Looks like wonder if Raff's ever tried training one."
"Gillian doesn't have any geese why are you watching Look North?"
"Am not, not really " Lawrence paused to drink some of his Coke, " waiting for Comic Relief to start."
"Ah you're watching it then?" asked Caroline carefully, not wanting to accidentally trigger a row, something that was all too easily done if she asked three consecutive questions about Lawrence's television preferences and viewing habits.
"Probably that guy from the Olympics is on, the one with the piano?"
"Rowan Atkinson," supplied Caroline, knowing better than to audibly bemoan her son's ignorance of Blackadder.
"Right, him anyway, thought I'd watch it."
"Okay then " Suddenly, Caroline was awkwardly stuck as the baser part of her brain realised her son was preoccupied with television, her mother was not going to randomly appear demanding an audience in person and her girlfriend was 'upstairs' so either in her bedroom or maybe the bath
"You could try ringing Gran," suggested Lawrence helpfully, looking at the snow falling in the garden.
"I'll call her from upstairs, whilst I'm changing," hedged Caroline, " you fine having late supper?"
"Okay then," and, refusing to become depressed by the weather forecaster enthusiastically gesticulating his way through a five day sub-zero forecast (it was mid-March for God's sake), she left her son and set off upstairs.
"Hi." Smiling, having heard Caroline's quiet tread on the stairs, Kate looked up from the papers she was reading whilst lying stretched out on her girlfriend's bed.
"Hello." Despite her confusion at seeing Kate reading paperwork of some kind, Caroline shut her bedroom door and leant against it, thoroughly enjoying the unexpected sight of her girlfriend stretched out on her bed, long legs casually crossed at the ankle.
"See something you like" teased Kate, conscious of Caroline's increasingly heated scrutiny.
"Not really "
"Pardon?" Of everything Caroline could have said, Kate hadn't expected it to be that, and no, she hadn't missed any sarcasm.
"It's Friday night."
"Yes, it is." Clearly, whatever was not to Caroline's liking wasn't so significant it was going to prevent the blonde from staying.
"Lawrence is watching Comic Relief " As she began to explain, Caroline 'unbuttoned' her cuffs, taking care to clip the silk knot links she'd used to fasten her cuffs together so she'd still have a pair when she eventually got around to putting her work clothes away tomorrow.
"Really? Thought he'd be too cool for that," observed Kate, swallowing thickly when she realised her normally obsessively neat girlfriend had just dropped her cufflinks on the bedroom floor.
"It seems Comic Relief and Children in Need are not the same thing," explained Caroline, never taking her eyes from Kate's as she steadily untucked her shirt, "plus the Olympics seems to have made him a Rowan Atkinson fan."
"Ah " Seeing Caroline's hands move to her shirt buttons, Kate gathered up her papers and tossed them on the floor, " what didn't you like?" she asked, suddenly realising Caroline's behaviour and her 'not really' comment were a bit inconsistent.
"You working, up here " Usually, Kate used the dining table or Caroline's study to work, " on a Friday night."
"Reviewing Jake's test for Year 9 French next week," explained Kate, rapidly losing interest as she began to get a sneak preview of Caroline's bra.
"You don't teach Year 9 French," pointed out Caroline reasonably, otherwise Kate couldn't have attended Lawrence's parent's evening with Lawrence.
"Which was why Jake asked me to review it, since I don't teach a class."
"Should I be worried you're reading tests in bed?" Shirt unbuttoned, Caroline removed her belt, leaving the shirt hanging open.
"Lawrence has to take the test so it was your bed or my flat "
"Ah." Belt discarded, Caroline reached behind her to unfasten her black skirt, "glad you came over." Was that a candidate for understatement of the year?
"How was the Heads meeting?" asked Kate in an attempt to keep the conversation going through Caroline's unexpected strip tease, referring to the Head of Department meeting that had delayed Caroline's start to the weekend.
"The usual they managed to get me to call you a cunning linguist," said Caroline casually as she dropped her skirt to the floor.
"What?" Startled, Kate failed to notice Caroline wasn't wearing her tights anymore, "how?" she corrected when she realised Caroline had not said exactly what Kate had thought she had said and, judging by her girlfriend's relaxed expression, she hadn't been offended either.
"It's my contribution to the school fundraising for Comic Relief, Beverley organises it," explained Caroline, content for the moment to just admire her lover who, for some reason, seemed even sexier lying on the bed fully dressed than undressed, only to realise that Kate's frustrated sigh meant that she had no idea what Caroline was talking about. "When there's Comic Relief or Children in Need the Department Heads submit words or phrases to Beverley which they challenge me to include, in some sort of context, as I chair the meeting, along with a donation bid that they will pay if I manage it. Usually they're just strange words for example Jennifer Aspinall usually asks for weird fruit or spices. Double-entendre is also common usually from the boys."
"What was Jennifer's word this time?" asked Kate, watching as Caroline sauntered across to the bed.
"Kumquat," declared Caroline, enunciating far more clearly than she had done in the meeting before resting one knee on the bed by Kate's hip.
"Kumquat the Cunning Linguist " mused Kate, running her hand up Caroline's thigh, making Caroline chuckle, " what happened to your tights?"
"Ladder had to take them off earlier this afternoon, and bloody freezing it's been too," said Caroline as she straddled Kate's lap, emphasising her point by tucking her freezing toes under Kate's thighs before remarking far too innocently, " and I think I'd prefer Kate the Cunning Linguist if we're talking dodgy film titles " causing Kate's jaw to drop in surprise.
"What?" Caroline was far too good at doing an innocent impression.
"Je ne peux pas croire que vous avez dit que " muttered Kate, running her hands up Caroline's back before she preceded to take Caroline's mind off her cold toes as cunning plans went, it wasn't perhaps as cunning as a fox who's just been appointed Professor of Cunning at Oxford University but it wasn't bad, even if Caroline did think so herself for that brief moment before she wasn't thinking at all, becoming distracted by her very talented and multi-lingual lover
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