The Bench | By: ken makepeace | | Category: Short Story - Love Bookmark and Share

The Bench

Ruby made her way down the drive after finishing her shift at the care home. Once at the bottom of the drive she saw a lad sitting on the bench. As she passed him, he smiled. She gave a nervous smile back.
   The next evening she wondered if he'd be there again. She wasn't disappointed.
   'You all right?' he asked as she walked passed the bench.
   'I'm fine,' she replied.
   They chatted for ages. Then as she was about to go and catch her bus he asked her out. She said yes. She couldn't stop smiling making her way.
   Next day, while working, she felt so happy. Even an elderly resident noticed.
   'You're in a good mood, dear,' she said to her.
   'I've got a date tonight,' Ruby replied.
   'Where's he taking you, then?'
   'I don't know yet.'
   'I hope it's somewhere nice?'
   'So do I,' Ruby answered with a smile.
   As soon as her shift was over, Ruby left to make her way home. She didn't even bother waiting for the bus.
   Once home, she rushed up the stairs and into her room. She searched through her wardrobe for something suitable to wear, then got changed before heading for the bus.
   'Sorry I'm a little late,' she said to him after they'd met up at the bus station in town.
   'Oh, it's OK. I've only just got here myself,' he answered. 'Hey, you look nice,'
   'Thank you,' she replied. 'So, where are we going then?'
   'You know that new restaurant that's just opened?'
   'Yeah,' said Ruby with delight.
   'Well, I thought we'd try the cafe a few doors down from it.'
   Ruby pulled a face, knowing how bad the cafe was. But fortunately he was joking. He'd actually booked a table at the restaurant. How could he afford the prices in a place like that, she thought. She just hoped he was able to pay the bill and that they wouldn't end up having to wash the dishes.
   After leaving the restaurant, they went for a stroll in the park. It was such a glorious night.
   Later, he walked her home. Once at her house he leaned forward to     kiss her, but then he changed his mind when he saw one of the curtains move in the front window.
   After saying goodnight Ruby made her way inside.
   'Have a nice evening, did you?' her mum asked.
   'Yeah, Wonderful.'
   'Taking you out again, is he?'
   'On Saturday night, hopefully.'
   When the Saturday came Ruby was working. As soon as her shift ended she got changed before leaving to meet him by the bench.
   But nearing the end of the drive, she saw that a car had crashed into the bench. Pieces of the it lay scattered around. The driver of the car was being tended to by a paramedic. Then she saw two ambulances; one of them was turning around to head in the direction of the main road.
   'What's happened?' she asked a man standing nearby.
   'A boy was hit by that car,' he said, pointing to the other side of the drive. 'It was going far too fast.'
   Ruby panicked as she wondered what to do next. Then she heard:
'You all right, Ruby?'
   She turned and saw a woman who worked at the care home. After explaining what had happened, she offered Ruby a lift to the hospital
   Ruby waited a long time before being allowed to go in see him.
   She visited him as often as she could. But on one visit she saw a nurse at his bedside. They looked a bit too friendly for Ruby's liking. As soon as Ruby approached, the nurse walked away with a guilty look on her face.
   'What's going on between you two?' she asked him.'
   'Nothing's going on.'
   Somehow Ruby didn't believe him. Then on her next visit she found that his bed was empty. After enquiring to where he was she was told to try the day room. When she got there she saw him with the nurse, from her previous visit; they were holding hands. Tears filled Ruby's eyes as she dashed off down the corridor and towards the exit.
   She only saw him once after that; he was with a few of his friends; they were making their way down the road as she was travelling into work on the bus. Staring at him through the window of the bus, she couldn't help but wonder, if it wasn't for that accident, would they still be going out together? 


Click Here for more stories by ken makepeace