The mist hung over the fields, obscuring the rising sun which vainly tried to burn the haze away. As the orb rose in the sky, the darkness crept back, revealing the white frosted land.
Johnny walked along the slick pavement, the overnight ice frozen to the surface making it treacherous underfoot. The annual work Christmas party had been deemed a success. He had been among the last to leave the club and ended up getting the early morning train back home.
He felt the taste of her lips still lingering on his. The smell of her perfume drifted up from his clothes. It had been a mistake. At least they had the holidays before they had to face each other in the office again. She was in a relationship, he knew that but he couldn’t resist. When she had arrived at the restaurant in the leather pencil skirt and sparkling top, he knew he was in trouble.
They had always got on so well – joking, flirting, at complete ease in each others company. They had become firm friends. Every time there were drinks after work they ended up together, chatting and laughing. When they ended up in clubs they danced the night away together – never in each others arms, but always in perfect synchronicity. Others joked that they were like a couple already.
Too much alcohol. Such a cliche but true. The fumble in the corridor was the culmination of their two year friendship. He knew if she had asked he would have gone further, a hotel room or back at his house. Instead she demurred. She had to be fair to Richard. She had to think about what she wanted.
He reached his front door and his frozen hands fumbled getting the key into the lock. Just as he closed the door behind him, his mobile phone beeped. He took it from his pocket: ‘Text Message: Jennifer.’ He took a deep breath and opened the message.
As he read what she had sent the mist cleared over the fields.