Accidents Will Happen
The message had been short and light on information, Drew had done no more than grab his, well Gabs, coat and dived out of Thesing's. The trusty Schauff was a bugger to get moving, he cursed as his foot slipped off the pedal - which of course whacked him in the shin. It wasn't far round to Schloss Bond; he was running up the kitchen steps less than five minutes after getting the call.
"Where? Who?" he wheezed.
"Flippin' eck Gabs, how'd you get here that quick?" Bern asked before replying, "It's your dad."
Bern led the way to the hallway where they found Dave Bond, surrounded by an assortment of ladies underpinnings, sprawled on his back and moaning dramatically at Mrs Rose's ministrations.
"Er hi Drew, ow!"
"Well your dad was taking my bags upstairs, next thing we knew there was a loud crash and we found him here." Mrs R advised.
"Should we call an ambulance?"
"Already done." Bern put in, "somehow you beat them."
As if on cue the two tone siren of the paramedics rent the air to be replaced moments later by the strobing blue lights reaching the interior of Bond Acres.
"So?" Drew enquired a couple of hours later.
"Nothing broken, just a lot of bruises but they want to keep me in overnight.
"Phew! So what happened exactly?"
"Well I was nearly at the top landing and I tripped on something, next thing I know Bernie and her mum are yelling their heads off and I couldn't move."
"Wonder what you tripped on?"
"Yeah me too.”
Bern leant in to her friend's ear, "it was a pair of your tights."
Drew's face dropped.
Dave not having heard Bernie was still oblivious to the cause of his fall.
"What's up kiddo?"
"A um er nothing."
"So why the guilty look?"
"I um just remembered that I left Con in the lurch, I um should ring her."
"Go on then."
"I'll go with." Bern offered.
"How'd you know they were mine?" Drew hissed at his friend once they were off the ward.
"Who else wears pink Fair Isle pattern?"
"But I put them in the wash - oh shit I must have dropped them."
"Um, does he know?"
"No and mum won't say."
"Now are you ringing Con or what?"
It wasn't exactly the way things had been planned but Mrs R took it in her stride and it meant moving the schedule round a bit but by the time the Rose's and Drew returned to Dernau everything was re-organised.
"Do you want me to come with you?" Bern asked her mother.
"Can you speak English love; I never was very good at languages."
"Oops sorry Mum," Bern blushed, the German whilst not perfect seemed natural, she'd been surrounded by it for several months after all, "do you want me to come with you to collect Uncle Dave?"
"No thanks Bernie, I think I can manage, its only driving on the other side, the Bonds car is English after all."
'Well Swedish' Bern thought to herself, 'but I know what she means.'
"I shouldn't be long. Where's Drew?"
"Madam is putting her face on for work."
"She I mean he works on Sundays?"
"Only when there's no racing."
"So what do you do?"
"Meet the girls, go shopping, you know the kinda thing?" she carefully avoided mentioning Martin.
"That too, if there is any."
Rather than delay further Cheryl gave her daughter a peck on the cheek and departed for the hospital.
"Four o'clock." Drew repeated, "Yes at my place...well tidy at least.... I know...okay, see you later, tschuss."
He closed his phone and crossed out the last name on his list.
'I hope Dad remembers or it's really gonna cock things up.' the sound of the Saab starting up brought his attention back to the present, 'best get a move on myself'.
"There you are, Mums gone to fetch your dad."
"Any idea where your Dad's taking us?"
"Not sure, he was mumbling something about lunch in Boppard, shouldn't you be getting ready?"
"I am." Bern shot back.
"I hadn't realised pyjamas were in or I woulda kept mine on."
"Pyjamas?" Bern, not being able to easily see past her growing bump felt at her legs and finding the flannel material screeched back, "Why didn't you say?"
"I just did."
"Well I need to get off or I'll be late for work, see you later."
"Um okay," Bern absently replied before starting a conversation with herself, 'what if Marty had seen me?'
Drew grabbed his keys and shaking his head went to find his steed.
"So, is it all set Gabs?" Connie enquired before he'd even got his coat off.
"I hope so, Dad's taking them down the Rhein somewhere for lunch, they should be back about five."
"So we have an hour to get everything sorted?"
"I spoke to everyone this morning; they're all bringing stuff about four so we should have plenty of time."
"You girls working today or just gossiping?" Frau Thesing called up to us.
"Coming!" we both chorused which set us off on a bout of giggles.
Of course the perverse law of expectancy meant that the day dragged like a dredger, slowly with a fair amount of shittiness. Missing orders, a broken Gaggia and a run in his tights did little to keep Drew calm. When his phone chirped from his apron pocket he nearly dropped the tray of crockery he was carrying.
"Hi kiddo, what time do you want us?"
"You asking or telling?"
"Telling I guess."
"Okay, we'll pickup Roni from Remagen station on the way in then."
"So where are you?"
"Koblenz, Bern is showing Cheryl the Deutches Eck."
"I can see them heading back, speak to you later."
He cut the connection and re-stowed his handy.
"Herr Bond?" Con enquired.
"Oh right, er yeah - just confirming arrival times."
Whilst he'd helped out with various social gatherings - and of course he was a regular attendee too, this was the first time he'd actually organised the full thing himself and it hadn't been any easier as it was supposed to be a surprise. Even as he headed home he was fretting about the arrangements although deep down he knew everything was covered and no one would let him down.
Although he'd told everyone to get to the house about four, martin, Max and Anna were already there wrestling with a banner.
"So how's this s'posed to work Mart?" Max was asking as Drew rolled to a halt.
"Heya Gabs." Anna chirped.
"That the banner?" well duh!
"Yeah we thought we'd get a head start with it." Martin grinned.
"Come on Gabs, leave them to it, we've got enough to do." Anna pointed out.
"Er yeah." he agreed.
It sort of felt wrong not to be involved with the banner but as Dad had told him when they were discussing it, being in charge is as much about delegation as actual doing - you can't do everything yourself.
"So what first?" Anna enquired once they were inside.
"Pia and Nena are bringing the drinks, I left Connie to do the warm snacks and Steffi will bring the cake." he ticked each item off on his fingers, "so that leaves moving furniture and putting up decorations, we can do the rest once the others get here."
"I'll start on the furniture while you get the decorations then." Anna suggested.
"That should be Dad." Drew stated as his phone jiggled across the worktop.
"Well get it then." Steff suggested.
"Oh hi Roni, what's up?"
"Nothing, we'll be about ten minutes, get the kettle on."
"Eh? Oh right, tschuss."
He broke the connection, "Showtime everyone!"
Everyone headed for their assigned hidey holes leaving just Drew watching the road from the kitchen window. Fr Dürst's car was parked in their neighbours drive and he didn't think Bern or Dad would recognize the silver Polo. The minutes seemed to drag on forever but then he spotted the Saab's lights heading up the street.
He waited until Dad pulled the car onto the drive before heading down to meet them.
"I need a wee!" Roni hissed rushing towards the house.
"Lovely thanks." Cheryl advised grabbing her bag from the back seat.
"Kettles on," Drew told them, "you coming Bern?"
"Coming." she grumped.
to be continued....
Maddy Bell 23.03.11 © 2011