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At Tanya’s house, where she lived with her parents, she and Chris were enjoying their date. Tanya had made a lamb tagine with rice and they were sat down in front of the TV with a bottle of rioja sat on a table in front of them. This proved how much more they were relaxed with each other; because Tanya wasn’t even put out when she had accidently spilt a drop of wine on the floor when she poured the last glass from the bottle. She just calmly wiped it up with a tissue. The idea for a night in with a film and a meal came about after Chris had gone running with her in Wollaton Park.
They had not seen Jared and Stephanie, but Jared had seen them and watched them from afar. The camouflage of Jared pushing the pushchair whilst walking with Stephanie had enabled him to blend into the background and so Tanya was unaware of his presence.
Tanya smiled as she thought back to how unfit Chris was, she had had to slow right down to enable him to keep up with her. This made it obvious that he was only doing it just so he could get close to her. He’d been eyeing her up since Jen’s birthday three months before and ever since the double date at The Slug and Lettuce they had been constantly texting each other; sometimes until after midnight. She thought it was a good job that she wasn’t on a pay as you go contract. When she thought back to Jared’s approach to her in John Lewis, thinking what her life would have been like if she had taken him up on his offer, considering the two incidents where she had subsequently met him, she was now really pleased that she was with somebody as sweet as Chris instead.
It was brave of her to decide to cook for him, though, because normally she had not got a clue, but her parents had had the tagine in the kitchen for months. This was another gadget that nobody ever used, just like the bread maker on the side. Her mum had always been the good cook in the family and that’s where she had learnt her skill in achieving good flavour. However, being back at home after Uni, she had slowly lost the knack, as her mum had resumed the role of cook once again. Given the fact that Tanya only worked as a makeup counter girl, she couldn’t afford to run her own home and so she was happy to live there whilst she saved and continue going to auditions, with the hope of landing a life changing role on tv.
Chris looked over at Tanya and said, ‘This is lovely you know, I would never have been able to do this myself.’
Tanya replied, ‘you can’t be as bad as my Dad, he’s crap, he can’t even make toast.’
As Tanya said this she looked over at Chris wondering if he had noticed how much effort she had made. It had taken over two hours to get ready. She thought she hadn’t looked this good since she was at uni, where Zara had taught her how to look better on a night out. Chris thought to himself that if it wasn’t for his sister’s birthday he never would have met Tanya. He had always been close to his sister since they were children and this had continued despite that fact that he hardly saw her due to being busy with the building. He was lucky in that, he could turn his hand to anything and was making a good living and had made many friends on sites. He spent all of his day hearing them wolf whistling at anything in a skirt and he was glad that he was with Tanya, as he hoped he would never have to resort to that. As he looked down at her he could see that she had made an effort and he found this very promising as it meant that she was interested in him and may lead further. He had no idea that Tanya had only been with three men before and was just as nervous as him although he should have guessed at how uptight she was as she had just spilt some wine.
As they sat down watching Sandra Bullock in The Proposal, he realised just how much he was a secret closet romantic and liked having Tanya snuggled into the side of him. As they cuddled up on the sofa, they had no idea that Jared lurked just feet away outside the living room window.