Tales of food, sex and friendship

Season 4: Episode 4

September 27, 2011


Willow stood in the centre of her room looking around at the piles of clothes strewn around her. Absolutely nothing was working. Everything she owned was too dressy, too casual, too slutty, too vintage or too conservative.

She glanced at the bedside clock. Shit. It was already seven. She was supposed to meet Robert Fortescue in less than an hour.

At least my underwear is OK, she thought, annoyed now that she hadn’t got anything new to actually go over the top of it. Still, she probably wouldn’t have been able to afford it: Willow had spent a whole week’s pay on a new lingerie set. She turned this way and that, looking at her curves nestled firmly in the delicate lace packaging, pleased with what she saw. Elegant and refined, with the slightest hint of burlesque, the cream and black set looked incredible – like it had been expertly crafted just with her in mind.

Exactly why she bought it she still didn’t know. The jury was still out on Robert Fortescue.

She had eventually called him back last week and agreed to go on a date with him – a proper date, not just dinner at his house. He’d pushed for a meal, but Willow had erred on the side of caution. She’d suggested a drink. If all went well, they could take it from there.


Willow sat on a leather sofa at the back of the vast bar, a half finished dirty martini in one hand, drumming her fingers absently on the furniture. Being a Sunday night, the place was relatively quiet with only a handful of glamorous types adorning the luxurious surroundings. Equally well-known for its exceptional cocktails and constant stream of Melbourne personalities, the newly opened bar was not exactly the type of place Willow frequented. But Robert had insisted and here she was.

Willow tugged at her top. She had decided on a beautiful black silk singlet and heavy, woolen wide leg trousers. She thought the outfit looked understated and stylish, but the Amazonian female behind the bar – cheekbones that could cut glass – kept looking at her as though she had got lost in the back alleys of Melbourne and ended up at the wrong place.

Willow pulled out her phone to check the time, again. She had been a fashionable ten minutes late, but Robert was really pushing the trend. In no way was it OK to keep a girl waiting for forty minutes without so much as a message.

Especially in a place like this.

Just as she drained the final drop from her drink – which, she had to admit, was one of the best martinis she’d ever had – the door to the bar swung open and Robert burst in. He waved at Willow apologetically, but instead of coming straight over and begging forgiveness for being inexcusably late, he walked up to the Amazonian goddess, leant over the bar and kissed her tenderly on both cheeks. They chatted for a few minutes, the jungle woman tossing her hair (or rather, throwing her head around in a hair-tossing manner. Her short, asymmetrical haircut made the actual tossing of hair impossible).

“I’m so sorry,” he said, when he finally walked over. “I was caught up with meetings…”

“…And you couldn’t get to a phone,” finished Willow sharply. The martini had hit her empty stomach and made her feisty.

He grinned ruefully.

“I really couldn’t get to a phone,” he said, running a hand through his thick, chestnut hair. Willow could just see the start of some grey peeking through at the temples. He looked distinguished.

Willow caught herself staring and remembered she was annoyed. She was not going to be treated like she was a secondary character in a weekly blog, no matter how good-looking he was.

“So how do you know her?” Willow asked nodding towards the woman behind the bar.

“Misty? I’ve known her forever,” he said casually.

Probably been fucking her for years, thought Willow, channeling her inner petulant teenager.

The glamazon herself broke the tense silence by delivering more drinks to the table; another martini for Willow and a scotch for Robert.

“This is my friend Willow,” said Robert, doing the introductions. “And this is Misty, who makes the meanest cocktail in the world.”

“You should have told me you were waiting for Robert,” she accused Willow.

“Um, right,” said Willow. “Of course I should.” Instead, she was thinking, errrr….as if!

Robert handed over his black Amex, but Misty waved it away, as if the titanium card were repulsive.

“Don’t be silly,” she said, stalking away again.

They both watched her go.

“Isn’t she great?” said Robert.

Willow took a large slug of her martini and rolled her eyes. Men.


The night did actually manage to get better.

For a while.

They chatted for hours about anything and everything, until at 1am Misty had to come over and, apologetically, tell them she was closing up. She hadn’t let them pay for a drink all night.

“Isn’t that such a great bar,” he said enthusiastically as they walked outside into the chilly night air. “Misty has really done an amazing job.”

“It’s a bit pretentious” Willow said. She’d meant it to be a light hearted comment – an indication that she didn’t want to go to places like that all the time – but Robert seemed to take it to heart.

“You didn’t seem to have a problem throwing back the martinis,” he countered, crossly. “They obviously weren’t too pretentious for you.”

“At least I wasn’t flirting with the bar staff all night,” retorted Willow.

“Who, Misty?” Robert threw back his head and laughed.

“What?” said Willow, sulkily.

“You were jealous of Misty?”

“No,” Willow mumbled, her face turning red.

Robert grabbed her arm and spun her around so she was facing him. He cupped her face in his hands and pushed his lips firmly onto hers. She tried to push him away, but resistance was futile so Willow closed her eyes and melted into his body, wrapping her arms around his torso. Fireworks were exploding in her head and her entire body felt as though it were alive for the very first time.

They kissed for what felt like forever, but no time at all. When he finally pulled away she felt her body yearning for more. Having all of him was going to be the only cure.

“Do you…do you want to come back to my house?” she said. She had spent a fortune on lace underwear, after all.

He kissed her again lightly on the forehead. “Go home Willow,” he said softly, still holding her face in her hands. “You’re drunk.”

He flagged a cab – of course one stopped immediately – and bundled her in.

“Oh and Willow,” he said, leaning in, a smile playing at the corners of his eyes. “Misty is my cousin.”

He slammed the door and tapped the top of the cab before it spun off into the night.