Chapter One – First Impressions

She’d spotted him before in the bedraggled procession of humanity that wound its way through the bank’s doorway and out onto Otley Road.

It was obvious he was one of the junior cricketers from the nearby stadium. They all shared the same thousand-yard stare, subtle aroma of Nando’s peri-peri sauce and tell-tale trouser bulge caused by the handfuls of mayonnaise sachets they purloined from the club’s canteen.

But Martin was different. He had the unruly mop of blonde hair of a Viking warrior and the demeanor of a schoolboy in desperate need of an afternoon power nap. In truth he looked like a cross between Boris Johnson and a yawning Labrador; two images no woman could resist.

As he approached her counter, dog-eared savings book in hand, she detected a slight squint appear across his face. An expression that reminded her of Clint Eastwood, one she interpreted as hinting at an inner vulnerability masked behind the raw masculinity of a professional sportsman, but which was, in fact, caused by intense concentration as he tried to work out if the bullet-proof glass between them was having a magnifying effect on her cleavage.

Little did she realise that Martin’s latest attempt to charm a bank teller into crediting his account with the motley assortment of supermarket savings coupons he’d ripped out of his parent’s newspaper was to come with an invitation for a night out on the town.

Her head was a whirl! Yet she readily agreed. To the night out, I mean – as someone being fast-tracked into the bank’s trainee management scheme she was well aware a coupon for twenty pence off own brand digestive biscuits wasn’t legal tender.

As he made his way out of the door again, she gazed after him, wondering what impression she must have made for the handsome young swing bowler to have plucked up the courage to ask her out.

The answer of course, lay in the slightly convex design of the Pilkington safety glass placed in front of her bosom.


Extract reproduced by kind permission of Ms Davina Masterson.