...Not bothering with breakfast, Darcy showered and sorted out her most presentable clothes. She hadn’t much to choose from. Her homeless days had meant that her belongings were kept sparse ...and there was nothing she could do about her shoes. They would just have to do, with a bit of a clean.
At ten o’clock on the dot, Darcy was sitting on the side-door step. She’d opted for a short soft skirt over knitted tights, as her boots had proved to be the most presentable under a rough polish. This was topped with a denim jacket and a long floral scarf flung around her slim shoulders, which she hoped gave the outfit an artistic flair.
A big part of her was eager to see who would appear, but a smaller part didn’t want to know who the mystery person was in case it spoiled things. Her life was moving in the right direction at last. She didn’t want to tarnish what she had achieved so far.
Take a breath to calm the mind
Determined not to misconstrue
Fingers pluck at tattered fringe
As tapping toe beats soft tattoo
While personal mystery appealed
Now keen to see whose face revealed
At that moment, the lumbering form of Hugh appeared round the corner with a big sheepish grin on his face. He looked immensely pleased with himself. Patting her clumsily on the shoulder, he beckoned her to follow him as he set off back the way he had come. Darcy’s heart beat fast, as much from struggling to keep up with Hugh’s giant strides as from pleasure at the thought of this giant of a man being her secret bearer of gifts.
They finally stopped outside an antique shop and Hugh produced a key and unlocked the door. Leading the way through to the back of the shop, Hugh pulled out a beautifully carved chair and motioned her to sit. Darcy sat and ran her fingers over the birds and flowers in the rich upholstery, gazing in awe at all the wonderful furniture around her.
Imagine all the sumptuous homes
That held such glorious things displayed
Finest honed and polished wood
All elegance, with gold brocade
On fabrics, silks and tapestries
Portraying past life histories
Darcy’s mind was suddenly transported back to the home of Mrs Judd and the two little dogs, Fortnum and Mason. That all seemed like a lifetime ago now.