Gaby Book 12+1 Chapter *38* Eloise Couture

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 get the complete book here! {Or here (US) -Erin}
*Chapter 38*

Eloise Couture

“You two okay?” Mum enquired.

“Just telling Mand how much the new eleven speed kit costs.”

“Don’t be afraid to speak up if the pace is too high, Amanda.”

“Er sure um, Jenny.”

Mum picked up the pace a little once we cleared the lights in Remagen and we made good time up through Oberwinter and on towards Bonn. We picked up a bit more traffic now but we soon lost most of it by taking the river road. Once or twice Mand lost her wheel but we were still all together when we reached the Rheinbrücke, our crossing point to Königswinter.

We made short work of the one-way system and were rolling down to Bad Honnef when Anja signaled a flat. It’s not a race and Mike is on his own so it’s not exactly race service so we all pulled up to wait for her.

“How we doing?” Mum asked Mand.

“Okay so far.”

“We’ll roll down to Linz then turn it up down to the ferry.”


“Well the next bridge adds another thirty k.” Mum advised.

Anja rolled up to us and we were on our way once again.

“What did she mean by turn it up?”

“You know, pop the speed up a bit?”


“Don’t worry,” I offered.

“Don’t worry she says, I’m riding with two World Champions, who aren’t even going full out and I’m on the edge already without them ‘turning things up’.”

“We’ll be steady for a while yet, it’ll only get quick for about five k,” I advised.

She was getting herself into a bit of a panic.

“It’s all right for you, you know you can keep up.”

I’ve no idea what was going through her mind, being abandoned, missing the ferry, getting lost – none of that was gonna happen.

“Calm down, you’ve done this in Switzerland and survived and anyway Mum said I have to look after you.”

“Now I need a babysitter!”

There’s no winning this one. Rather than waste breath arguing I left it at that.

One thing about riding along the river, this one at least, is the lack of climbing, even going up stream so we made good time through Unkel and were soon tracking the river opposite Remagen. Despite her doubts, Manda was still doing her turn without issue but of course we aren’t at Linz yet. A certain amount of pre effort preparation started taking place, a bite of energy bar by Tina, a slug from a bidon by Anja – yup they’d be going full throttle.

After the ferry traffic lights Mum started ramping the speed, no longer were we rotating, this is full on race effort. Mand doggedly hung on out of Linz but would blow anytime; I sat up and let the others get on with it, taking Mand off with me.

“What’s up?” Mand puffed.

“Just fancy taking it easy.”

She gave me a look but said nothing as we returned to a comfortable twenty-five k pace. When we reached the Bad Hönningen ferry not so many minutes later the others were still puffing from their efforts and the ferry was on its way back to our bank of the river. Mum winked at me as we joined them on the slipway.

“Who got it?”

Mum pointed over to Erica.

“First time since May,” the victor noted.

Which started a round of lively banter.

“What they saying?” Amanda queried as the ferry landed below us.

“Just ragging Erica over her poor form this summer, she won the sprint.”

“I really do need to learn some German.”

“I’m sure you’ll pick it up.”

“Come on kids, the fahre won’t wait you know!” Tina advised.

The rest of the ride was more sedate back up through Singen then up the lane to Neunahr and Apollinaris, the light fading rapidly as we covered the last few kilometres. The others headed for the showers but as Mum had the car, the Mercedes that is, we loaded our bikes including the Schauff before heading home still in our kit. One advantage of having several showers in the house is no one has to wait to use one.

“So our ride is picking us up about six thirty just make sure you’re ready.” I instructed Manda between mouthfuls of Wednesday’s lunch.

“What time are you back here?”

“Dunno, depends on Gerta, half four maybe.”

“That’s cutting things fine.”

“Gaby Bond, living on the edge!”

“Get over yourself! I’ll see you later.”

“Yeah, laters.”

I closed my handy and returned to eating.

“That the mystery English?” Steff queried.

“She’s not a mystery and yes that was her.”

“So we meet her tonight, eh?”

“Yeth,” I agreed around a mouthful of mozzarella and tomato.

It was quarter to three when I arrived at Eloise Couture – a bit early but time is of the essence!

The bell over the door announced my arrival.


“It’s er Gaby, the blue dress?”

“The von Strechau gel, you have your shoes?” Gerta queried coming through into the shop.

“Er yes,” I agreed holding them up for inspection.

“Well stop shilly shallying, go try it on.”

I assumed that meant the dress was in the changing room, “Er yes, ma’am.”

The dress didn’t look any different, it didn’t look like €189 either but I’m committed now, it’s this or raid Goth Gurl’s wardrobe. I quickly stripped down to my undies; I did at least wear tan hose so I can wear my stilts. The dress was certainly snugger in the boob area; I slipped on the shoes and checked my reflection.

“You coming out of there?” Gerta barked.

“Um, coming.”

I tottered into the shop where Dotty and Gerta were waiting.

“Ah, perfect!”

“She does look nice,” Dotty agreed.

“The shoes are a reasonable match, darker would’ve been better,” Gerta, ever the perfectionist, observed. “Well what do you think, gel?”

What could I say? It’s been altered to fit me, my alternative options are almost nil and okay, I like it, there I’ve said it.

“I’ll take it!”

“Well we knew that, how does it fit?” Gerta huffed.

“A lot better than yesterday, I don’t feel like I’m falling out of it quite so much.”

“Good, you’ll need different hose of course.”

“Whatever you suggest,” I agreed. This is gonna max out my spending account, I’ll have to transfer some from my savings for Japan.

“Well get changed then, you haven’t got all day!”

Put like that I had to agree, I have about two hours.

“I’ve put suitable hose in the bag along with your shoes,” Gerta advised indicating the large Eloise Couture carrier holding the dress.

“How much do I owe?”

“It’s on your account, I just need you to initial this for me.”

I took the receipt book and scanned the neat writing;

Eloise Couture

Zum: von Strechau, Gaby

Biba Kleid mod. Lisa, blau 189 –
Wolford Strumpf, Schwarz glanz 39,50

z. Rechnung tax Inc. 228,50

Yowch! Well she won’t take my money so what choice do I have? I initialed it at the bottom and returned it to Gerta.

“I hope you have a good time tonight,” she offered with a smile, slipping a copy of the receipt into the bag.

“I’m sure I will, I’d best shake a leg.”

“Take care,” she offered handing me the bag.

“Thanks, tschuss!”


Of course the bag was too big to fit in my basket, bum, how do I get everything home? Hmm, half three, if I go to the city stop I can get the Express up to Dernau. I made it with seconds to spare, my dress dangling from the bars not making things easy.

“You get it?” Mand enquired as I slipped past her door.

“Yeah,” I sighed.

“You need a hand with anything?”

“Any good with putting hair up?”

“Am I? gis a shout when you’re ready.”

“Gaby? That you?” Dad’s voice reached us from below.

“Yes, Dad,” I agreed.

“Gloria rang, she’ll be a few minutes earlier so make sure you’re ready, let Amanda know.”

“Yes, Dad,” I confirmed.

“Best get a move on, girl!” Mand prompted.

“Wow!” Manda exclaimed when I reached the hallway.

“Looking one hot chica, yourself,” she did, it might not be a €200 dress she was wearing but she’ll be turning a few heads tonight.

Dad’s dismembered voice rang out, “Call when you want picking up, don’t make it too late please, I have to go to Dortmund in the morning.”

“Yes, Dad.”

A restrained toot of a horn announced our ride.

“See you later!”

“Take care.”


Maddy Bell © 27.12.2014

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