Lies, Lies and more lies in this twisted tale of dating deception.
I didn’t see it coming. For some dumb reason I was optimistic. So it’s strange that when she waddled into the bar I knew immediately that she was my blind date. Maybe it was the embarrassed look on her face but more likely it was a sudden realisation that my luck would never change. Who’d have guessed that a girl who flirted online so vivaciously would look like an elephant seal in a wig? There was no way out. My orange shirt betrayed my identity as the guy she’d arranged to meet and she headed toward me like a bowling ball aimed at a ninepin.
“Liam?” she said holding out her chubby hand.
I looked surprised. “Er… No. My name’s Robert.” I lied.
She looked surprised then, momentarily, hurt. “Oh I’m so sorry!” she said. “I’m supposed to meet someone here. I’ve never met him but he’s supposed to be wearing an orange shirt. I thought you were him. I’m sorry.”
Before she turned away her eyes narrowed with suspicion.
“A blind date?” I asked, trying to make myself believable as an innocent third party.
She turned back and laughed, and I have to say it was a great laugh, really open and friendly. ”No!” she said “just conveying a message for a friend” She gave me that look again. “Listen do you mind if I sit here while I wait for this other guy with an orange shirt?”
“Not at all,” I said. She sat next to me at the bar. I could feel her giving me the look. My confidence was crumbling. The silence was painful.
“So you’re doing someone a favour?” I asked.
“Oh, it’s my friend Sarah. She met this guy online and like, she arranged to meet him here but…she couldn’t make it… so she asked me to come apologise for her.”
“Why couldn’t she make it?” I asked, rather too quickly.
“Oh, she got called to a shoot.”
“Sure. You know a photographic shoot? She’s modelling for this underwear catalogue. Apparently the photographer is some hotshot arty guy who treats his models like dirt. Calls them in to work whenever he feels like it but she says the money’s too good to say no.”
“Would you like a drink?” I asked.
She looked at the door, then at her watch. “Well I wasn’t going to but… well, sure, why not? Thanks. I’ll have a Vodka and Coke.
I got us a drink each and we sat in silence clutching our glasses.
“What did you say your name was?” She asked.
“Robin, Robin Smith”
“Are you sure you didn’t say Robert?” Her tone was cold and hostile. She stood up angrily. “You are Liam aren’t you?”
The game was up. Attack was the best form of defence. I shrugged. “Maybe,” I said. “But don’t think I’ve been swallowing this crap about your model friend. I know you’re really Sarah. I admit to lying but you are out of my league when it comes to bull.”
Her eyes widened with indignation, her mouth puckered tight as a mouse’s ass and suddenly my face was wet and cold. The ice hit me right in the eye. She stood quivering with rage holding the empty glass as if she wanted to smash it into my face but a phone beeped from her pocket so instead she pulled out the phone
“Hi Sarah, how’s it going?
You’re finished already?
No, I’m fine honestly!
Yes I’m in the bar…
No don’t come, there’s no one called Liam with an orange shirt.
No, meet me at mine I’ve got something to tell you.”
She was good, but I know the difference between a ring tone and a text alert.
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