Text in Blue is in German
The last few weeks had certainly thrown up some new experiences for Drew but deep down he was pining for Warsop and everyone there. He'd spent the last hour as near as damn it just staring out at the vineyards behind the house and getting a bit morose to boot.
Downstairs he could hear Goth girl arguing with Dad over nothing important as usual. The Ahrtal Express tooted from somewhere up the valley and the gentle put-put of a tractor out on the road added to the feeling of alien-ness he was feeling.
'Hmm, I really ought to email the gang' he mused, 'Ally did mail me last week after all, I guess I've been a bit distracted.'
There was no excuse for the tardiness, Dad had finally agreed to them getting an ADSL line so line time wasn't an issue. No it was as much that Drew didn't know what to write. He booted his PC up and opened his Yahoo mailbox.
'Hi everyone, remember me?
Sorry I didn't write before but life's been a bit hectic what with moving and school and stuff. Hope you are all well, my hay fever has calmed down a bit.
The new house is really cool; I've got a room in the attic that even has its own shower! I'll have to take you some pictures. Mum says that we could maybe arrange a visit in the summer hols, what do you guys reckon?
I've started school and it's not as bad as I thought it would be. I can sort of understand most stuff and Connie helps out when it all goes double Dutch. I've started going to school with a bunch of kids from around our village; we meet at the bakery and ride the couple of miles to the school.
Everyone seems pretty nice and they asked me to go to Bonn on Saturday but I've got a race on Sunday at a place called Kassel, we're driving up on Saturday as its too far to do Sunday morning.
Oh yeah, nearly forgot, I did my first race last week and guess what? I won! I ride in a different category over here, which means we can race on the road properly sometimes - much better than those boring circuits and airfields at home.
Jules is still mostly skiving, as she isn't starting school till September. She is helping at my school as a teaching assistant for English - can you imagine Goth girl as a teacher?
Anyway that's about all the news for now - let me know about the summer hols.
He hit the 'send' key and sat back. He really was missing the gang even if things had gotten a bit strained sometimes since America - especially with Mad. Of course Rhod or rather Em was at his Dad's place in Wales now so there were really only the girls left in Warsop.
"Are you going to mope up there all evening Drew?" Dad's voice enquired from below.
"Well go and find something to do, its too nice to sit indoors."
The tone of his voice brooked no argument.
I slipped my Air Rifts on, found my shades and wallet and headed out avoiding the still heated discussion between Dad and Jules - I'm sure I'll find out later what its all about. What to do? I know, I'll go see if Connie is doing anything.
Its not a long walk to the bakery so I was there in ten minutes, Fr. Thesing was behind the counter serving but Connie wasn't in sight.
"Güten tag Drew, you after Connie?"
"If she's around."
"She's upstairs, go on up." She motioned to the door at the side that I knew led to the family apartment above - not that I'd been up myself.
"Er thanks Fr. Thesing."
I cautiously made my way up to the flat.
"Hello? Connie? Anyone there?"
The stairs opened into a neat hallway, I could hear a telly playing MTv - that seemed like the place to head for.
"Connie?" I poked my head in the door.
"Um?" she was indeed there laid on the floor reading a magazine while drivel TV played in the corner. "Oh hi Drew."
"Your mum said to come up."
"So what's happening?"
"Well nothing really, Dad has kicked me out while so he can shout at Jules in peace. I wondered whether you fancied a walk or something - if you're not doing anything."
"Only catching up on the celebs." She twitched the magazine cover to reveal it was Stern she was reading. "Tell you what, we could go over to Anna's, I have some stuff for her so we could kill two birds."
"Up in Esch?" 'That's a fair walk.' I mused.
"Sure, we can ride, it won't take long."
"I've not brought my bike."
"You can take Mama's, come on." She beamed.
"Okay" I shrugged, after all it's not like I'm a bike snob is it?
Five minutes later I found myself struggling to balance Fr. Thesing's weighty Schauff along Backstrasse. The riding position was all wrong which was the problem and it's almost impossible to stand on the pedals for more than a couple of metres. Connie was struggling not to laugh at my efforts but I finally managed to tame the beast and the pair of us started the climb up to Esch.
"So you are liking it here?"
"It's a lot different to England - and I miss my mates,"
"You have new friends now,” she mentioned.
"I'm getting used to it, things are a bit more relaxed and yep, you guys have made me really welcome."
A few clouds passed overhead as we started the climb proper but I pretty much ignored them, in fact they were welcome relief from the suns heat. Maybe I should've paid more attention. About three quarters of the way up it got pretty steep and I was all too grateful when Connie dismounted and started pushing, her mum's bike weighs a ton!
"Not like your Rennrad eh?"
"No" I puffed back, my calves already complaining.
"It levels out shortly."
The breeze seemed to get stronger and colder as we remounted a couple of minutes later, that usually means rain is coming on behind - hopefully we'll be at Anna's before then though.
Then in a sudden flurry the wet hit. You could still see blue sky around us but the rain really hammered down and very quickly we were drenched to the skin. With the rain still falling the nearest shelter was Anna's house and we made a frenetic effort to get there.
"Schitzer, you guys are nearly drowned!" Anna helpfully pointed out.
"A bit damp." I allowed from beneath my ratty hair.
"Come, I will find you some dry stuff, Connie you know where the bathroom is ja?"
"Sure, come on Drew, let's get this wet stuff off." Connie agreed.
Talk about embarrassing! Connie was only wearing a skirt and spaghetti top so she was very quickly dressed in a bath towel.
"Come on Drew, you'll catch your death." Connie cajoled.
"Bring your wet stuff down for the drier." Anna added from the foot of the stairs.
Well he could hardly claim to be fine, his clothes were thoroughly soaked after all, best to just go along - he'd be wrapped in a towel anyhow. He quickly lost his wet outer clothing - there is just no way that he was going to remove his undies! He'd never really mastered the whole towel wrap thing but there was salvation in the form of a bathrobe with 'Anna' embroidered on the breast hanging on the door, she wouldn't mind would she?
"There you are Drew, you found my robe, that's cool. Give me your wet stuff and we'll get it in the drier."
"Er thanks Anna. Um sorry about this." Drew apologised.
"Neh, neh. No problem." she switched the drier on and we adjourned to the lounge. "You guys want a drink?"
"Well I'm wet enough." Connie laughed.
"What would you like, there's milk or I think we have cola."
"Ja of course, you sure Connie?"
"Oh go on then, lite."
It wasn't a usual situation, sitting in someone's kitchen semi naked on your first ever visit and Drew was a little thrown by it. Connie and Anna were chatting away, Drew was doing his best to follow things but he was catching only odd words. There was something about a kid called Jurgen, which was presumably funny as they both started giggling.
"You okay Drew?" Anna enquired.
"Er yeah, just day dreaming."
At that moment there was a bang - not explosion bang, more BANG!
"What the heck was that?" Connie exclaimed.
"The drier's stopped." Drew noted.
"Oh bum, it must be the fuse again, it did it last week, and we couldn't even get the clothes out until Stefan fixed it." Anna told them.
"Well at least it's dry outside." Connie mentioned.
"Sorry guys, I'll ring Stefan."
Anna disappeared but returned in fairly short order.
"It will be the morning before he can fix it guys, you'd best borrow some clothes to go home - you'll get arrested like that!"
"Thanks" Connie mentioned.
'Hope she has some shorts or something.'
"Come on up then." Anna instructed.
With some reluctance Drew followed the others up to Anna's bedroom with a sense of foreboding. You could tell it was a girl's room even if the décor was a little unusual. Certainly it was a generally pink free zone, owing more to the Adam's Family than Barbie. That didn't mean it was devoid of dolls and stuff but Drew recognised the Goth leanings.
There was a squeal of brakes outside, bike brakes, not a sound you hear very often around Bond acres with Dad as a mechanic. Interest piqued, Jules went over to her window and was greeted by "flippin' skirt!" and some giggling. Down on the drive were two girls, currently the smaller one, a girl in a red fitted blouse, black and red patterned skirt and black tights was fiddling with something on her big German roadster. The other one looked like Drew's mate, Connie. So who is the, never!
"Gaby?" she called down.
The small blondes head jerked up. Yep that's Drew all right.
"Jules!" Drew complained turning to look for the source of the voice.
"Up here Gab's"
"Drew, why is she calling you Gaby?" Connie enquired.
"It's a um family nickname from like ages ago. Park your bike and come and meet the family."
Drew led the way into the house, compared to Connie's home the Bond's lived in a mansion!
"That you Drew?" Dad's voice enquired from the lounge.
Before he could answer Jules' voice chipped in.
"Gab's brought a friend Dad."
Dad stuck his head into the kitchen to find one bemused teenage girl and his son, er daughter - well Drew stood there in a skirt looking daggers at his sister who preceded him into the kitchen by a short head.
"Drew?" he enquired.
"Oh sorry, Connie meet my Dad and you know my sister."
"Ah the famous Connie, nice to finally meet you." Dad beamed.
"Its not always like this." Dad mentioned.
"Sometimes its worse." the black haired one finished.
"So um Drew, haven't seen you in a skirt for a while." Dad was fishing for an explanation.
"Anyone want a drink? Connie?" Jules enquired.
"Mash some tea Jules." Dad instructed, "Come on you two lets go through to the lounge."
Drew's heart sank. Just when he thought Gaby was a thing of the past this had to go and happen.
"Drew tells me your family are bakers."
"Um yes, the bakery in the town."
"Not causing you trouble, this one?"
"Not at all Herr Bond, she's one of the gang already."
"So how did you get Drew into a skirt today?"
Drew tried to hide in the sofa, now Dad was interrogating Connie.
"Well we were headed up to Anna's on the bikes..."
Drew could only sit mutely as his friend related the tale.
"...It was all that fit - Anna is quite tall." Connie finished.
‘And I'm not!' Drew fumed to himself.
They drank their tea after which Jules insisted that Connie have a tour of the house.
"...And up here's my room." Drew mentioned leading the way to his eerie.
"You are so lucky Drew, this house is so big."
"Its not much different to our old house really."
"Are all houses in England so big?"
"Nah, Rhod lives over his mums shop in a terrace, that's really tiny."
"Ooh you have your own shower!"
"Well it gets a bit crowded in the mornings."
Connie was a bit confused, downstairs her friend answered to Gaby, she was wearing a nice outfit of Anna's but there were not any nice things in her room, if anything it was a bit boyish.
"Bother! Is that the time? Momma will go spare."
Drew checked his alarm clock - it was just turned nine, where did the time go?
Maddy Bell 05.06.07 © 2007
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