TG Universes & Series:
“Come again?” Jules exclaimed, “So you passed up going to the Schloss because you want to do your washing?”
“And I’m not going out with him,” I asserted.
“Believe that if you like, Gaby Bond, I can find a hundred people that know otherwise,” Goth Gurl crowed.
“So when do I meet Mr Wonderful?” Mand enquired.
“You don’t!” I snapped.
“No need to be like that,” the Dark One retorted.
“Sorry, Mand, I’m not seeing him but I suppose you might meet sometime.”
“Someone doth protest too much.”
Keen to change the subject I turned the questioning around, “So how did school go?”
Mand went into a diatribe that I half listened to as I worked through Herr Ansbacher’s homework, we’re doing Charlemagne and the Mittelalter this term, talk about politics and intrigue. Of course my excuse about washing was hogwash, Mum had spent the morning doing five loads of washing, I got home to find a pile of clean stuff waiting for me on my bottom step.
“I said, what do you normally do for entertainment,” Mand apparently repeated, I was a bit engrossed in a sort of family tree that showed how interwoven the big Houses of Europe are.
“You know, the thing you do after school and before bed, fills your spare time?”
“Erm,” I had to think for a moment to recall what I’ve got organised. “Well Mondays I coach the cheerleaders and Fridays it’s Garde,” I offered.
“You don’t do anything else?”
“Well sometimes we hang out at Pia’s or go down to Remagen for pizza.”
“There no disco’s or anything?”
“I think there’s a youth club down near the Pinger’s but I’ve never been.”
“What about the weekends?”
“Depends, might go shopping or just hang out. It depends who’s about. So what did you do in Croydon or wherever it is?”
“Up the club on Mondays, Double Six on Thursdays, a few of us go into town on Saturdays.”
“I think we’re going to Pia’s tomorrow if you want to come.”
“They’re your friends.”
“So? You’ve got an open invite and you get to practice your German,” I told her.
“Sprecken ze doitch.”
I snorted, “That is so bad!”
“Some of us aren’t good at languages.”
“Soz, I was probably just as bad at first,” I admitted.
“So what has you so engrossed, can’t believe you like doing homework.”
“Oh it’s just this family tree thing, Sophie’s family were like really powerful back in the day.”
“Sophia? Who’s she?”
“I’m sure I told you about Sophia, she’s like Max’s second cousin or something, I roomed with her when I went to the wedding. Hang on, I’ve got some pictures somewhere.”
“You mentioned something about a wedding,” she supplied as I searched a pile of stuff.
“Oh, didn’t realise I had this,” I allowed pulling a copy of Stern from the pile.
“Didn’t take you for being into weddings and stuff.”
“I’m not but like it was a royal wedding, Princess Marguerite Frederick Saxe Coburg and Crown Prince Wilhelm Habsburg and yours truly was there,” I passed her the magazine, “there’s some pictures near the middle I think.”
I continued looking for the pictures Max’s mum gave me, copies of the session in the Englisher Gärten.
“Geez, Gab, there’s some right toffs here, hang on, that’s Prince William and Kate.”
“Gaby Bond you know it is!”
“Alright so Prince William was there so what?”
“So what she asks, anyhow where’s this Sophia?”
“In the blue near the bride.”
“She’s quite pretty, so who’s the short arse next to her?”
Oh bugger, I forgot I was in that picture, “I, erm.”
“Oh my god, it’s you isn’t it? Yeah, I recognise your smile, Gaby Bond you sly cow!”
“What have you got there?”
“Er wedding photos.”
“Let’s take a squint then.”
The pictures were mostly from the gardens but there were a few less formal shots from the evening too.
“Ooo nice frock, Gab, who’re you dancing with?”
“Um Prince William,” I squeaked.
“Prince William,” I admitted turning a brighter shade of puce.
“What for? You girl, score more Brownie points than anyone I’ve ever met!”
“Look you can’t tell anyone about this.”
“No seriously Mand, Stern even offered money to find out who I was.”
“Really, they had me on the cover and everything.” I admitted.
She shook her head, “Gab, you are the limit!”
“You two want cocoa?” Mum called up the stairs.
“Downstairs in five then.”
“So like Max, he’s some kind of lord or something?”
“His dad’s the Baron, he’ll be Baron after him.”
“So you’ll be a baroness!” she enthused.
“I am not interested in him!”
“Let’s get that chocolate,” I suggested.
“So what have you two been up to?” Dad enquired when we arrived in the lounge.
“Gab was showing me wedding photos.”
Dad raised an eyebrow.
“Munich,” I filled.
“Oh right, that reminds me, Wilhelm has invited us up at the weekend, some sort of family shindig.”
“Max never said anything,” oops!
“Well don’t plan anything Saturday afternoon, you too, Amanda.”
“You’re invited too.”
“But I don’t know anyone.”
“You will!” I gloated.
“Your dad told you about Saturday?” Mum asked arriving with the tray of hot chocolate.
“Ask Max whether it’s formal or not when you see him.”
Why does everyone think I spend time with him, even Mum’s trying to get us together.
“You could ask Gloria,” I suggested.
I got a look by way of reply.
“Everyone coming tonight?” Pia asked while we supped our coffee a la Thesing next morning.
“Dad’s dropping me off,” Brid offered.
“You bringing your house guest, Gabs?” Steff asked.
“I think so, you want a lift up, Con?”
“Lunch, girls!” Frau Thesing called from the counter.
“Is Anna coming?” I asked as we collected our used crockery up.
“I left her a message last night, not heard anything back,” Pia told us.
“It’s not been the same since she started college,” Nena mentioned.
“Less manic,” Steff supplied.
“Definitely that,” Con agreed, “Frikadel with salad?”
“Mine thanks,” I supplied, hey I am allowed you know.
Once lunched up we headed for the bikes and another day at Silverberg Gymnasium, I’ll have to start wrapping up a bit more, its starting to get a bit cooler these days.
“Oh hi, Claudia.”
“The Boss wants to see you.”
“Frau Boxberg? Now?”
“See you later.”
Wonder what the Head wants? I don’t think I’ve done anything.
“Where’ve you been? One minute you were there the next you’d disappeared,” Con complained when I caught up to her.
“Claudia wanted me for something.”
“What’ve you been up to now?”
“Nothing as far as I know, Boxxie has summoned me at break.”
“Yeah, tell me about it.”
We went into our homeroom and took our usual seats.
The dolt was engrossed in some banal chat with Ralf.
“Oh hi, Gab.”
“Yeah whatever, this do on Saturday, how formal is it?”
“Gran’s Birthday? I’ve had to get my jacket cleaned, why?”
“Your dad’s invited us,” I sighed.
“Fraulein Bond, Herr Strechau, when you’ve finished arranging your social calendar,” Fr Dürst intoned.
The colour started to rise even as my classmates giggled and chuckled.
“So then, Bond?”
Sugar, the Baroness’s Birthday, Max is wearing a jacket that means a halfway decent frock, great.
I knocked on the door to the Head’s study.
“Er you wanted to see me, Miss.”
“Ah, Fraulein Bond, please sit,” she instructed, “You enjoyed Japan?”
I took the seat opposite her, “Er yeah, quite good.”
I’m sure this isn’t really a social thing; I wish she’d cut to the chase.
“You had a win?”
“Um yeah, I got a podium too.”
“Your mother said.”
This’ll be trouble.
“So next week is it,” she stated.
“Getting your plumbing sorted.”
Ah, that it.
“Um yeah, Saturday.”
“How do you feel about it, I know you’ve been sort of sat across the fence for a while.”
“Yeah,” I agreed. That’s one way of putting it.
“I’d still rather be Drew,” I told her, “but it’s not like my body is giving me much of a choice is it?”
“I suppose not, you don’t have to like it, on the other hand you have it easier than people who want to change how they are erm, perceived. Gaby, I know you’ve had issues with self image, you know I’m available to talk if you need to.”
“If you can arrange your social diary outside of the classroom in future?”
Bum, how did she find out?
“Yes miss, sorry miss.”
Maddy Bell 20.11.15
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