iam smiled; he’d already seen this coming. “You will get help for your gambling addiction. It will be written into your contract that if you are caught gambling while on these premises you will be evicted. You will get yourself back on your feet and get your life back on track.”
“And?” he asked. Cass shook her head; that was it. “What’s in this for you?”
“I’m repaying a debt” she said. Liam knew what she meant; how she and his father had met. Liam nodded and thanked her. It was probably the first real honestly heartfelt kind words he’d ever said to her.
It was Friday; Cass went into the office, Liam went to return the car and make a start on sorting his finances out. He also booked an appointment with a doctor to see if there was any practical help he could get with his gambling addiction; he knew this could be his last chance; if he screwed this up there was only one other way out. If he were honest with himself he never would have seen Cass as being his saviour and if the roles had been reversed he certainly wouldn’t have been hers.
He literally only had the clothes he stood up in; so on Saturday Cass took him to a department store where she held an account and had him kitted out with a few decent outfits. Then on to a barbers to have his dishevelled unkempt appearance dealt with before he put an appearance in at the company as a manager on Monday morning. Manager of what, as yet she wasn’t sure as she had no idea of his skill set.
On Saturday evening they went for a meal at La Dolce Vita and Cass reflected the young man now sat opposite her was vastly different to the young man who had staggered across her hall on Thursday evening.
Cass wanted to know how much he’d got sorted on Friday. Liam handed her a list. He needed to open a new bank account as his previous one had been frozen, so she told him to get his passport and driver’s licence address changed to Satama which was the name of the house. She presented him with his tenancy agreement; he read it carefully signed both copies and gave her one back.
During the course of the meal he asked her why she hadn’t remarried or wasn’t dating? He paid her a sort of backhanded compliment by saying that for an old woman she didn’t look ‘that’ bad that she’d scare ‘all’ men away. Her answer nearly floored him. “Because I’ll never meet another man like your father.” It was a simple honest appraisal and made Liam realise she had actually loved his father very much.
When they arrived back at the house Liam took off to his room. While they were in the house they really didn’t need to have much to do with each other. It was large enough that they could comfortably not see each other for days on end. They both had their own en-suite shower rooms and the one main bathroom was rarely used, only by herself on a Saturday night as had always been her ritual. Soak in a deep bubble bath; earphones in, eye mask on.
After about twenty minutes of them getting in he heard her singing at the top of her lungs and totally out of tune. He smiled as he realised that some things didn’t change and this had infuriated him about her when he was a kid.
After about twenty minutes she went silent. After a further twenty minutes he actually started to worry she had drowned in the bath. Eventually this dire thought got the better of him and he went to check on her.
He found her fast asleep. She had a neck pillow on suckers keeping her head out of the water; she was perfectly safe. He recalled another time she had been sleeping in the bath when he had been about sixteen and he had turned the shower on full belt on cold. It had been the first time he had heard her swear, "You fucking little shit!" she had screamed at him. He laughed to himself at the memory. He had always been playing pranks on her as a kid.
He decided this was just too good an opportunity to miss and crept over to the side of the bath. Nothing as drastic as the cold water stunt but he’d simply give her a bubble beard and post the very unflattering pic of her on her social media.
As he reached down to gather the bubbles however she moved and instead he cupped her breast. She screamed; dragging the mask off her face absolutely horrified. “Killing me will not in any way shape or form improve your situation!” she screamed.