"I... really like you." He didn't quite meet her eyes. "And I'd love to see you again...you know...outside of work."
"Well, there's work. Like I said before, the whole inter office relationship thing. I've already been cautioned about it once and..."
Was he going to say he didn't want to see her again, now that he'd slept with her? She chided herself for thinking that the night before had been anything more than a one night stand. How could she have been so stupid?
She looked at her plate to hide the tears that threatened. "I understand that. I don't want to get you into trouble. So, if you don't want to meet like this again..."
"No, no," he said, eyes wide. "That's not what I meant. I meant... can we keep things discreet at work? You know, pretend nothing's going on?"
"Of course, I can do that." She knew her relief showed in her voice. "For a moment there, I thought... Never mind."
Marsh reached across and took her hand. "I really, really like you." He looked into her eyes. "I have from the moment I ran into you in the street. And each time I get to know a bit more about you, I like you more. I wasn't going to suggest we treat last night as a one-off." His dimple appeared. "I don't think I could bear that."
"That's good. I kind of enjoyed myself last night too." She felt another blush creep up her cheeks.
Marsh brought her hand up and placed a gentle kiss on her palm.
Later, as Marsh packed up his bag, he said, "Jane, what happened to that paper you found last night? Is it still on my desk?"
Jane thought back to the highly charged moments of the night before. "I think Keith has it." In her haste, she hadn't even thought to ask for it back.
"It's no big deal. I can always print another copy."
"It's not that. It's Keith. I bet he takes the credit for it."
Jane gaped. She knew he and Keith didn't get on particularly well, but she didn't think either of them would lower himself to such a level. "He wouldn't do that, would he? It's not exactly professional."
Marsh gave her an unreadable look. "I wouldn't be so sure."
"I'm sure it'll be okay."
Marsh said nothing and went back to cramming papers into his bag.
The walk to the train station was very different from the one the night before. They walked briskly, but without urgency. It was still quite early, but the sky was turning soft pastel pink and birds were singing. Jane felt as if she was walking on air.
As they neared the station Marsh said, "Perhaps it would be better if we catch different trains. You catch the first one that comes. I'll catch the one after that. That way we'll arrive a few minutes apart."
"It wouldn't do to turn up together." She started to smile, but then remembered she was still wearing yesterday's clothes. Her smile faded.
"I'm just wondering if it's obvious that I'm wearing the same clothes as yesterday."
"I hadn't thought of that." He touched her hand. "Don't worry. I doubt anyone will notice."
From: Sally Thomas [SThomas@ramsdeanandtooze.com]
To: Valerie Fenwick [Vfenwick@ramsdeanandtooze.com]
Did you see what Jane had on this morning? Was that the same top she was wearing yesterday?