Never a Perfect Moment

Never a Perfect Moment by Cathy Cole

Book: Never a Perfect Moment by Cathy Cole Read Free Book Online
Authors: Cathy Cole
me,” said Ollie, looking around.
    Polly was determined not to give up. “He’s a landscape artist, but not in the traditional sense,” she said. “He takes a view and breaks it down into its component parts. Lines and colours.”
    â€œOK,” said Ollie. He had his concentrating face on.
    â€œThis one, for example,” Polly said, pointing at a picture that resembled a pile of brightly coloured matchsticks that had spilled haphazardly across a white floor. “Blue for the sea. Red for the roofs. Yellow for the sand. White for the cliffs. Landscapes are basically lines and colours, Ollie. Kazuhiro Mori takes that literally.”
    She hadn’t done a very good job at explaining the painting’s appeal, she realized. It was hard to explain why she loved Kazuhiro Mori’s paintings of Heartside Bay so much. It was because he saw through everything. To the heart of everything. To what was real.
    â€œOK, so I’d maybe have that one on a duvet cover,” Ollie said, staring at the painting. “I think I can see the sea, maybe. Yeah, and the roofs too!”
    Polly felt encouraged. “Exactly! It’s really simple, but wonderful.”
    Ollie sat down on the padded leather bench in the middle of the gallery. “I still don’t totally get it,” he admitted. “But I think I understand why you like it. You like to get to the bottom of things.”
    â€œI suppose I do,” Polly said, feeling a little surprised at Ollie’s flash of insight.
    Ollie waved at the pictures. “How do you think this guy would paint a football match?”
    It was an interesting question. Polly sat down next to him and thought hard about her answer.
    â€œCircles,” she said at last. “The ball and some of the markings on the pitch are circular, right?”
    â€œHave you ever tried kicking a square ball?” Ollie enquired, grinning.
    â€œThere’d be squares too, and angles,” said Polly, warming to the theme. “The goal posts, the other markings.”
    â€œLots of green?” Ollie said. “For the pitch?”
    â€œMaybe, but… ” Polly shook her head. “Green breaks down to the component parts of blue and yellow. He’d do it that way, I think.”
    She realized that Ollie was looking intently at her.
    â€œWhat?” she said, blushing.
    â€œYou find beauty and significance in everything, don’t you?” he said.
    His eyes flicked to her mouth. Polly’s throat went dry. Was he going to kiss her now?
    â€œAren’t you cold in that?” he said, pointing at her skirt.
    Polly flushed bright red. “No,” she lied. She tugged at the hem.
    â€œIt’s not what you usually wear.”
    â€œDo you like it?” she asked, with a smile.
    Ollie made a face. “Not much.”
    Polly felt like he’d slapped her. “W … what?” she managed. “You think it doesn’t look good on me?”
    â€œThat’s not what I meant,” Ollie said. “It’s just … not really you. Is it?”
    Polly felt utterly humiliated. She obviously looked like a prize idiot.
    â€œAnything else wrong with me?” she demanded angrily.
    Ollie fiddled with his earlobe. “Now you come to mention it, what’s with the big black eyes?”
    Polly felt like bursting into tears on the spot.
    â€œI think I’m going to go home,” she said abruptly, and quickly turned out of the gallery. Why was everything she did so wrong? Why did it come so easily to everyone else and she couldn’t even put on eyeliner without it looking stupid?
    Ollie followed. “Polly, I didn’t mean to upset you. I just … you asked me and I gave you an honest answer. Honesty’s good, isn’t it? I thought … I thought that’s what you wanted. Being more honest, not joking all the time… ” He trailed off.
    â€œIt’s fine, OK?” Polly said,

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