He had been single for five years now.
He had found it hard going on his own. He had raised his children, but they had grown up and got on with their lives. Sure he still saw them, but that didn’t fill the void. He yearned for female company but he was afraid of the whole dating game. He’d been out of it for nearly twenty years, hadn’t he. He was too old, wasn’t he?
He had accepted a promotion and transfer to a new town, in an attempt to escape the ghosts and pain of his past. A fresh start. A new manager must make the right impression, and get the job done. He threw himself into his work, gaining the respect of peers and subordinates alike.
But he was still alone. Nothing had changed, had it?
He became aware that he was attracted to Rachel in the company’s pay office. She was 15 years younger than he and single. Rachel was a petite blonde, about five-two, with a captivating smile and shy personality. He had needed to go to the pay office from time to time, to authorise payments and allowances for his staff. He would stop and talk to Rachel, he found her bright and friendly, but he was always careful not to be too forward when talking to her, or talk to her for too long. But he found himself going to the pay office more frequently, but nobody would notice, after all he was the manager.
When her 30th birthday came along, he had taken the time to make her a birthday card. What would she think? How would she take it? He had become so concerned on how the card would be received, he couldn’t send it.
He had told her about his doubt about a month or so later. She laughed and had said that it was a lovely thought; and that she would have loved to receive his card.
He had continued to work hard to meet the targets set by his MD, but he found that thoughts of Rachel were never far from his mind. No; I’m too old for her, she’s not interested in me, he told himself.
Nicole the office accountant was to be transferred to head office. The office staff had arranged a farewell for her at the local hotel bistro. He had been invited to attend. He was reluctant to go, but realised he had to. He would have to say a few words on Nicole’s behalf. She was a good accountant and had deserved the promotion.
He arrived a little late at the party. He found that he was seated next to Rachel. They talked; they talked a lot; they found they had much in common, similar likes and dislikes, music, food. He loved her smile and the twinkle in her eye. He told her so. She smiled again coyly. The night ended all too quickly, and he found himself walking her to her car in hotel car park.
He faced her, holding both her hands, looking down into her eyes and about to wish her goodnight. She said ”I’m not ready to go home, let’s go for coffee, as I’d like to be alone with you”. And without waiting for an answer, she reached up and kissed him.
“Everything will be alright”, she said.