Sunday, 21 October 2012

FICTION : Camomile Crescent - Danielle & Marc

For the previous instalment of 'Danielle and Marc' click here

Danielle strummed her perfect French manicured nails rhythmically on the arm of the sofa.  Her mobile phone sat poised next to her.  She stared into dark depths of the original Victorian fireplace glancing, occasionally, at the screen of her phone.  She knew she wouldn't miss the call, the ringer was set to the loudest it could be, but she couldn't help checking just in case.

She had been sat in the same place for about an hour, dressed immaculately, and ready to go.  She had been unable to sleep.  Marc was due home from his latest business trip to the States and she had never been so anxious to get the call to say she should leave to collect him from the airport.

She had discovered she was pregnant two days earlier.  She had been called for a routine Cervical Screening.  Due to her busy schedule it had been sometime since she had actually booked the appointment and she remembered they would ask her when her last period had been.  She was shocked to see it was about three months previously.  This did not alarm her at first, she had carried her contraceptive pill over a couple of times, due to travelling and busy events for work.  Even so, she did realise that she had taken the break this time, so she should have technically had, or be having her period. 

Again this had not phased her, she conceded that since she had messed with her body clock, quite considerably, it might just be confused and decided to continue with her next packet of contraception, normally, for a couple of months to allow her body to adjust.  The snooty nurse had frowned at her when she explained what had happened.  She had felt herself redden as she was made to feel like a chastised school girl.  The nurse finished her lecture about misuse of the contraceptive pill with words that felt like bullets.

"We had better do a pregnancy test."

"What?  Why?"  Danielle had snapped.

"Just to be sure." the nurse replied wheeling her chair across the floor to a large unit of trays.  Rummaging around in one she produced a wrapped test and small instruction leaflet.

"I'm not pregnant - surely I will be super protected because I haven't had a break."  Danielle tried to quip.

"Better to be safe than sorry.  I am not happy to carry out a screening until you have taken the test or had your next period."  This nurse was no nonsense, Danielle could tell.  She sighed, it had taken multiple changes of bookings to get this appointment fitted in, she couldn't face trying to juggle another one.  She took the test, rolling her eyes. 

"Fine, where do I need to go."  she asked curtly, making a show of straightening her expensive charcoal pencil skirt with her free hand.

"Along the corridor, on the left." the nurse replied not looking up from the forms she was completing.  "I'll leave it up to you if you want to find out the results in private or if you want to come back here and wait." she stated, glancing up as Danielle reached the door.

Danielle smiled tightly "Thanks." she said closing the door "I know what the result will be though." she muttered to herself as she hurried along the dimly lit corridor.  She found the toilet cubicle vacant and locked the door behind her.  She read the instructions, balanced them on the small sink and unwrapped the pregnancy test.  As she sat down to urinate on the tester she decided she actually felt quite affronted by the nurse and the dressing down she had given her.  Next time she would go private she thought, Marc was always saying she was crazy using the NHS when she had private health care at her fingertips. 

Standing up she cursed as she noticed she had wet her own hand as well as the testing stick.  She looked around for somewhere to put it down but found a lack of ledges "Well I am not holding it between my teeth." she griped and it took her several attempts to get it to balance on the sink.  As she flushed, she turned to use the wash basin and knocked it on the floor.  She tutted and soaped her hands.  At least there was a mirror she thought studying her skin and eyebrows.  She felt tired and it was showing.  She was going to start using a night-cream she decided.  Her eyes caught sight of her nails as she moved them over her cheeks.  She would ring her beauty therapist and ask for an early morning appointment for before she started work.  She would book in for a full body massage at the weekend as well, maybe Marc would even want one with her she considered.  Yes, a complete relaxation weekend for just the two of them was in order.

The thought of Marc made her smile.  He had been away for several weeks but he would be home in a few days.  She had suggested the idea of a holiday to him and he had said they could discuss it when he returned.  She was hoping that they might be able to take a longer break than normal and perhaps try one of the Caribbean islands.  Really splash out.  She could not wait to sink her bare feet into some hot, white sand rather than uncomfortable designer shoes.  As she was daydreaming, she realised that the few minutes needed for the test develop must have passed.  She bent down and picked the test up off of the floor.

Flicking her hair back she turned the test over.  Two lines clearly stared back at her.  She felt panic rising.  "OK" she mumbled "Is two lines positive or negative?" she thought she knew but she had to be wrong, she had only read the instructions briefly she reassured herself.  Grabbing them up out of the wet sink she scanned the small black print:

The tester will show one blue line as a test line.  This indicates that the tester is working.  If you see a second blue line, this indicates a positive result.  If only the test line is visable, the test is negative.

Danielle suddenly felt hot and sat heavily on the lid of the toilet.  Two lines was a positive result?  She looked again at the tester.  Well, it was certainly showing two.  There was no mistaking that.  She looked away quickly, like if she couldn't see it, then it wouldn't be true.  She sat trying to think of any possible way she could have fallen pregnant.  Marc had hardly been here for the last six months so it was damn well against the odds of happening she thought bitterly. 

She wasn't sure how long she had been sitting on the toilet, but she suddenly realised she needed to return to the nurses room.  She stood and glanced in the mirror.  She couldn't remove the pale, ashen look she now sported.  Taking a deep breath she unlocked the door and found her nurse waiting patiently outside.  Seeing her, she burst into tears.  The nurse put her arm around her and guided her back to the privacy of the medical room.

Together they had tried to guess how far along she was.  Danielle had recalled the week when she had severe food poisoning and how sick she had been.  Despite this Marc had been going away on business and had made quite a show when she had said she wasn't sure she felt up to their usual goodbye sex session.  As he had stomped about upstairs she had felt guilty and given in, after all she would regret it in a few days when she was feeling better she was sure.

The nurse had suggested that this was mostly likely when it happened.  She informed Danielle that vomiting could reduce the effectiveness of the contraceptive pill.  She had noted that the instructions, available in every packet, clearly stated that in the case of illness other forms of contraception should be used.  At seeing Danielles face crumple again she said it was surprising at how many women was not aware of this.  The nurse had given Danielle some literature about all the options available. 

"I know what I need to do."  Danielle started.  The nurse put up her hand.

"Danielle, you need to go home and think about things.  Talk to your partner.  Really give the situation some thought."  Danielle nodded but knew there would be no discussion needed on the matter.  Marc would pay for her to go private so she could get things sorted quickly she presumed.

After thanking the nurse, she left the surgery and been surprised to find it was dark outside.  She had not realised how long she had been in the surgery.  She drove her bright red sporty two-seater home without her mind on the road.  When she pulled up outside 19 Camomile Crescent she couldn't remember the journey.  She decided the sooner this was sorted the better. 

The next day she had gone for her early nail appointment and been so busy at work she didn't have time to think about it all.  At least now she knew what was making her feel under par and she wouldn't be feeling like it for much longer.  She would be back on top form at work and maybe have the energy to stamp on a few of those back stabbing colleagues who were not on her side when she needed them lately. 

On the other hand the thought of having to go into medical institution made her feel extra sick.  As it was now.  Sat at home waiting for Marc to call.  She wasn't looking forward to telling him she had messed up with the contraception.  He would be tired and ratty from his long day, followed by the flight.  She hoped everything had gone smoothly, otherwise she might not even be able to talk to him about it until tomorrow.

At that moment her mobile belted out its all too familiar ring tone.  Marc.  She picked it up and took a deep breath "Hi!" she answered enthusiastically "Great!  OK, can't wait to see you!  Love you! Be there soon!"  She ended the call and realised she was shaking.  Had she been too perky?  Had she covered the news of 'I am pregnant with your child.' sufficiently? 

She shook her head, he would have been too preoccupied with getting off of the flight to have noticed anything, they only spoke for a matter of seconds.  If she wasn't driving she would have made herself a drink to calm her down a bit.  Even though it was only 7am.  It wasn't all bad nerves she decided, there was the excited anticipation of seeing the man she loved after weeks apart mixed in. 

She slipped her black patent four inch heels back on, wincing slightly.  She grabbed her car key from the 'key bowl' in the hallway.  Then she remembered herself and swapped it for Marc's.  He had a new swanky four door Saloon.  As she never knew if he was bringing anything back from his apartment in New York she thought it was for the best.  He was so annoyed with her last time as they had to try and cram everything in the tiny space her car afforded.

She hoped he was in a better mood than on that occasion.

It didn't take her long to reach the airport and as it was still early she navigated her way to the pick up area quickly.  She got out of the car, her stomach more swirling than ever, and took a deep breath of fresh air to try and help with the nausea.  She soon saw the familiar shape of Marc making his way to the automatic doors and she scurried over to greet him.  He was still wearing his suit and shirt from his day at the New York office and she thought he looked tired, but swarve.  If they had decided to have children she would have hoped they would have his height and jet black hair - not that it was ever going to happen.  They had made that decision early on in the relationship. 

Danielle threw her arms around his waist and sunk her head into his chest, taking in the familiar aftershave.  She had missed him.  He held her tight and kissed the top of her head as she clung on tight.  She looked up to him.

"I am so glad you are home."

"Me too."  He replied "I need a decent cup of tea."  Danielle laughed.  She was sure when he got to the States he said the same about coffee.  They made there way to the car.  "I'll drive if you want." he said as he watched Danielle open the boot and struggle to put his luggage in.  She stuttered, worried that if she was a passenger the car would make her even more sick.  She needed something to keep her mind focused.

"No, no." she interjected "You've had a long day."  He shrugged yawning and opened the passenger door.

"Whatever you want sweetheart."  Danielle decided to tell him as soon as they set off, she wanted to get it over with and then when they got home he could cuddle her in bed and tell her it was all going to be OK.  She didn't mind if they spent the whole of Saturday having a duvet day.

"So, we need to talk about," she paused, toying with how to word it "some things."

"Yeah," Marc replied settling his seat back and closing his eyes "I've got a mad schedule coming up that I need to go through with you.  I don't think I will be able to fit a holiday in at the moment."  Danielle deflated, she had hoped he might be around for a couple of weeks, she was going to need him.  And a holiday.  "I've got to go off to Ireland for a couple of days tomorrow." He continued "Then I will be back for a day, maybe two, then back to the States for a couple of weeks."

"Again!"  Danielle startled.  She hadn't meant for her reaction to slip out, but he was in the UK less and less.  Marc opened his eyes and looked at her.

"Sorry Danielle, you know how it is.  The US Client needs me in person and things are really picking up out there."  She sighed. 

"I know.  I would just like you here a bit more."  He moved his hand across to her leg and rubbed it gently "Just be grateful for what we do have.  Remember we are doing all of this work now for a better life in the future.  When we are in our forties life will be one long holiday."  She was getting a little sick of hearing the same statement but turned and forced a smile.

"So," she began again "We need to talk about something."  Marc had laid back again.

"Hmmmm" he replied.

"I, er, I.  I found something out while you were away."

"Hmmmm" he responded again

"I'm pregnant." she kept her focus on the road and could feel Marc had frozen.  He sat up, pulling the chair back into a sitting position.

"What the..." he began. 

"I know."  Danielle cut in "I was stunned too.  I went for my cervical screening, the nurse insisted I do a test and Bam, it came up positive!" she was talking too fast, she knew.

"I've barely been here Danielle." She didn't like his tone so explained about the contraceptive loophole after stomach sickness. 

"Have you booked in to deal with it?" he asked her in a tone usually directed at his Personal Assistant. 

"Not yet, I wanted to tell you first." Danielle started but was cut off.

"Well, you better do it first thing in the morning.  Go private, they'll be able to do it straight away.  Pay whatever you need."  Although she knew that would be their decision she was taken aback by his frank attitude.  She opened her mouth but nothing came out.  "Hopefully it'll be done by the time I get back from Ireland eh."  He leaned the chair back again, crossing his arms over his chest and closing his eyes. 

Danielle continued to look ahead feeling irked that he hadn't even asked how she was feeling.  Especially when he knew she had such a fear of anything medically related.  She wanted him to be there to support her.  She wouldn't be able to go on her own and she really did not want to have to tell her Mother.  She would have to call Emily, one of her oldest friends and see if she could stand in.  On the other hand, Danielle mused, he had actually taken the news better than she had anticipated and hadn't gone on a rant which finalised with laying the blame at her door.

As they pulled up outside of their house, Danielle realised how tired she felt and was looking forward to falling into bed.  They paused at the door to unlock it.  As they fiddled with the keys a disturbance along the road caught their eye.  One of their neighbours, Danielle believed the females name was Sarah, was shouting at a young women who was walking rapidly away from her.  A large man came out of the house and ushered her back in.

"A domestic argument - on Cam Crescent?"  Marc said sarcastically "I didn't think that sort of behaviour was allowed."  He sniggered at his own joke as Danielle finally got all the locks open.  As they entered their immaculate Victorian home, Marc did what he always did "Make us a decent cuppa darling will you?"  Danielle kicked her heels off.  Nothing changes, she thought.  Although that wasn't a bad thing, she didn't want it to.

"Course, I'll bring it up."  She watched him disappear up the stairs.  She entered the kitchen flipping the kettle switch.  That was the first time she started to feel a small amount of cramping in her lower abdomen.  It wasn't unbearable but it wasn't comfortable.  She had been in desperate need of the toilet since she had arrived at the airport so went to the bathroom hoping it would relieve it.  As she heard the kettle whistle, she stood and thought she noticed a little pink discolouring.  Her heart started to beat a little quicker.

"Are you getting the tea from China?" she heard Marc call.  She used another piece of tissue but found nothing.  She frowned.  "Danielle?" she heard him call. 

"Coming!" she replied.  She had to get that appointment booked in, she needed her life to go back to normal.

All previous instalments of Camomile Crescent can be found on my Fiction Page.



  1. So now we are back to Danielle and Marc. I had a feeling she might be pregnant - and as for Marc, I am not liking him very much at the moment - lack of empathy and emotion - can't help thinking he's got others on the side too. I hope Danielle takes the time required over her decision! X.

  2. I had my suspicions about Marc right from the start! Hmmm. My theory is he's got a double life/ another woman/ kids on the other side of the Atlantic. He's no good. I'm sure of it. x

  3. Although the next instalment is focussing on one of the other families, after the next few 'groundwork' parts the stories should all start to be able to weave together and it will be less 'disjointed' (I hope!). Glad I seem to be getting across the characters how I want them.x


I would love for you to quack your thoughts along with me and will always try and quack right back.