Summer 2010: John is 30 and Rachel is 29.  Last update: Summer 2010

Ignore

Rachel is adept at ignoring certain things, it is skill her mother insisted she perfect and cultivate in an effort to make her adult life easier to bear. In between croissants and afternoon tea Rachel had been taught that the first thing a society woman learns to do is ignore certain unpleasantries, especially in regard to her husband – so she does.

She ignores the nights he comes home in the early morning smelling of cigars and pungent perfume. She ignores knowing looks mixed with envious ones when she goes shopping or to get her hair done. She ignores many things not because her mother told her to but because she remembers why she got married and it wasn’t for love. Rachel doesn’t need someone to tell her to ignore the love that grows within their seven year marriage, she already does.

A call breaks her away from her thoughts and the long abandoned book, drawing her eyes toward the window where John stands smiling. He waves at her, beckoning her to come join him outside.

Suggestion

“How does lunch downtown sound, darling? Arthur is keeping the boys for most of the day so let’s go on a little date.” He grabs her hand, gently moving Rachel into his personal space. “What do you say?”

She stares into his hazel eyes for a moment reading the sincerity in them before drifting over to his golden blond hair. Its neatly combed back, its luminosity maintained with regular visits to the hair salon and automatically her hand drifts to her own dark locks pinned up high and messy. She suddenly feels unpresentable.

Rachel starts to pull away from John. “I need to get dressed first. I don’t-”

He stops her, tipping her chin so that he can see her eyes. “No, today is our leisure day. We’re not going to care about what they think or expect from us. Let’s just have fun.”

BadIdea

It isn’t until they’re already at the restaurant and see people who know them that the anxiety starts to build for Rachel. She can’t fathom why she let John talk her into leaving the house such a mess while he looks impeccable. Turning before they get a chance to be seated, Rachel starts to suggest they return home but John cuts her off.

“We’re staying.” John narrows his eyes,noting the anxiety anxiety in her blue eyes and the tension in her shoulders. Annoyance makes his tone harsh “You never let them get to you so why is today different?”

Rachel doesn’t bother answering him.

Know

“Corinne Peabody is here.”

“I don’t care and neither should you. We’re above the Peabodys.” There’s a sneer on John’s face and she would laugh if she isn’t acutely aware of her messy hair and almost nonexistent make-up.

“Her father won the Heredon Cove Award of Exellence, I believe.” Rachel can tell she’s aggravating him. It’s in the way he holds his menu and she waits patiently for his response, ignoring the minute spark of pleasure she gets out of annoying him.

John waves away the waiter, not even bothering to turn and acknowledge him. “So did my father and so will I. It’s the reason we got married, isn’t it? I get the chance to change my wild boy, partying image not only for my father but the society that judges us and you get to relieve all that rampant lust through the propriety of marriage.

Marriage

She can’t hide her shock and she quickly cuts him off before he can continue. “Can we not talk about the reason we got married here John, we’re at lunch and most of these people know us. I can’t believe you would even bring that up.”

ATouch

They’re both silent for a few tense moments before he reaches out to her, his hand dancing over hers. “Sometimes I wonder what it would have been like if we were in love, if we’d be different people. Would you smile more? Would we be more at ease? Would I stay home more? I just wonder.”

Her heart feels heavy, burdened with the weight of her undeclared feelings and his revealed speculations. Would life be different if she knows he loves her? Would the quiet fade away replaced by their laughter and ease in each others presence? They’ve been married for seven years and she’s loved him for six, would it be so hard to believe that he feels the same way?

“Don’t you wonder Rachel?”

Catching a knowing smirk from a blonde across the dining area, Rachel answers decisively before eating one of her prawns. “No I don’t.”

*******************

A.N: So how do you tell two people who are in love with each other that its ok that they’re in love with each other because I don’t think these two get it. I hope that gave a better glimpse into the weird dynamic that’s in this family and maybe the reason for it.

I’m sorry for those who miss the kids but once I got started with this thread in their story I didn’t want to let it go and possibly lose the intensity of it. They actually did a few other things. Rachel took the kids to the park and they had a family barbecue with John’s brother Arthur and his family. So I guess that’s a question for my fellow writers: How do you decided on what goes in each update and what has to get left out? Do you try to fit everything or are there big things left on the cutting room floor? Do you follow a theme throughout or just go with the flow?

I might do the family barbecue as a mini update in August or September, mostly because it has some relevant points in it. Oh and there was a smirking blonde. I just didn’t like certain aspects of the picture so it stays out of the actual update.

Smirk

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