Amanda's Wedding

Amanda's Wedding by Jenny Colgan

Book: Amanda's Wedding by Jenny Colgan Read Free Book Online
Authors: Jenny Colgan
thought, sod it, and – having (correctly) ascertained that there was no possibility of further Ralph Fiennes butt shots – lost interest in direct proportion, made myself some tea and had an early night for once. Well, it had been a big day.

    The following morning I awoke with the realization that: (1) for once, I didn’t have a hangover, which felt weird, and (2) bugger it, today I had to go to work in marketing. And (3) Fran was pissed off with me, and (4) I would have to pretend to Alex that everything was FINE, and I’d never pressure him again, and (5) Alex wasn’t lying there beside me, begging me not to get up, holding me to him, smelling good. Where the hell was he?
    Was it raining? Oh, good.
    I trudged into the office, almost but not quite late, in an insolent fashion. There were already strange men around my desk fiddling with my dead pot plant. Barney, wisely, was nowhere to be seen.
    â€˜So I’m moving already, am I?’ I remarked to the builders (wryly, I thought).
    â€˜Don’t worry, love.’ The bigger of the two chaps looked at me with pity, as if they cleared out people’s desks every day, which they probably did. God, they must be human misery experts. I thought he was about to say, ‘Worse things happen at sea,’ but he didn’t.
    â€˜We’ll have you out of here in no time.’
    If only. Suddenly I realized that his mate with the funny ears and what looked like Copydex stuck to his chin was reaching towards my emergency didn’t-get-home-but-had-to-go-to-work-drawer, the contents of which included knickers, tampons and the numbers of several reputable clinics.
    â€˜Errm, I’ll get that,’ I screeched, in what was patently not a casually helpful tone of voice.
    The first guy gave the ear guy a ‘seen it all before’ look.
    â€˜Actually, love, we don’t need to open the drawers to move the cabinet.’
    â€˜Right, OK, right.’ Bugger it. I looked around for something else I could pretend to be helping with, but decided to settle for the ‘I’ve just remembered something incredibly important’ look and dashed off.
    On the way downstairs to the marketing department, I paused to say goodbye to all my friends in the publishing unit, then I remembered I didn’t have any.
    â€˜Off so soon?’ I heard from Shirley.
    â€˜I thought she was part-time anyway,’ said someone else and I made a face at her (to myself, obviously; I had no intention of getting my eyes clawed out with long fake fingernails with jewellery inthem), and disappeared down to the bowels of the building.
    The marketing department had been painted again – mmm, lime green and turquoise, how wacky. Somebody here wanted you to think of your job as fun – or else. Already I was scared.
    â€˜Hi there – you must be Melanie!’ gushed someone who sounded so pleased to see me I assumed she must be a long-lost relative who thought I was rich. ‘I’m Flavi!’
    This was Flavi, prize bitch, with whom I’d been having a voice mail argument for nearly a year? Well, there you go. She looked like an over-made-up perfume counter assistant.
    â€˜Brilliant to see you! Are Tony and Elvis bringing your things?’
    How does she know their names? I wondered nastily.
    â€˜Yes, I think so. I saw them upstairs …’
    â€˜Great, great, we have a space for you over here.’
    Stop being so nice to me! What was this, first day at Malory Towers?
    I moved to the space and looked at it, not quite sure what to do. The bloke to my right in the cheap suit and chains gave me a cheery Cockney nod. I recognized his face from various indistinct but possibly naughty photographs that got pinned up on the noticeboard after the annual Christmas party. No doubt I would recognize other parts of him as well.He was about twenty-one, skinny as a whippet, with plastered forward hair, shiny and heavy with gel.
    On the

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