Because of Rob. Chapter 5

Mrs. E. appeared out of the dark to meet us. A strikingly beautiful woman, you could never say she was forty years old (that’s what Mrs. Caroline whispered to me just before the greetings). Guys would call her irresistible. At least it was clear from Ben’s look. I squeezed his sleeve rather rudely and raised my eyebrows, meaning You are my boyfriend or you lose a million.

I didn’t like Mrs. E. Not because she was more beautiful or rich than I was (but we will see what happens when I am forty years old). The problem with her was this: she was using her beauty and position to win over everyone and everything. It was easy for me to feel. I was a girl and I had at least some sense left in me. I clung rather possessively to Ben, sorry for him for  the hundredth time that day and thought: You will lose that deal, bitch. You will.

I could not understand the meaning of Mrs. E.’s look at me. It was probably a look of interest, but a look of a snake was equally possible. I somehow knew a time will come and we will have to fight over something. No, not Ben. I doubt if she saw me as Ben’s girlfriend. I mean, she believed I was Ben’s girlfriend, but it wasn’t what I really meant to her. She was not going to play a game where we had equal chances. There was to be a game where she would be higher by all means, and breaking the rules would be wrong. Even for such an unreasonable girl like Emily J.

I don’t remember how Mrs. Caroline introduced us. I only know that after pronouncing my name Ben kissed my cheek and I didn’t kill him not because we had agreed on it, but just because I hardly noticed it. I was thinking of Mrs. E.’s opinion of me, and what the fight or game between us was just around the corner, and I was feeling it just like an old witch feels with her nostrils.



Image taken from Disney Wiki


Because of Rob. Chapter 4

Shopping. A totally. Hateful. Thing. Especially when your boyfriend (no matter whether a real one or not – you are still supposed to please him) is assuring you that everything looks wonderful on you, while you are determined that whatever you try on makes you uglier with every new glance in the mirror.

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Mrs. Caroline stood out of the way for a while and let the sweethearts work it out by themselves, but when it proved to be the most hopeless business ever, she threw Ben out of the game, having come to the conclusion that our clothes make no difference to guys as long as we are not naked, and dragged me out in the street, saying:

“I know where we are to go.”

I felt immensely relieved to be in the fresh air again, but my breath was soon taken away when Mrs. Caroline revealed that she was pulling me to her neighbor’s boutique.

“Are you serious?”

“Absolutely, my dear. Lucy E. likes nothing more than seeing someone dressed the way she has wanted it.”

Well, this was the place that made me feel like a farmer’s daughter. But I was encouraged by Mrs. Caroline saying:

“Here you can choose whatever you like. Mrs. E. will be pleased with everything.”

There are rare moments in my life when I am practical. Luckily for Mrs Caroline, such a moment had come. I decided to choose the second cheapest dress seen around. Just not to rob Mrs. Caroline and to deceive Mrs. E., only a harmless bit. Choosing the cheapest dress would have made it obvious I was drawn by financial reasons. I wanted to pay her a compliment for her design, not for setting higher or lower prices. I was delighted to discover that my taste was unanimous with economy. The evening dress both chosen by me and approved by Mrs. Caroline was of dark-purple color, long, straight and simple, with a silver belt on my waist.

When my hair was done, make-up put on and heavy silver earrings completed the image, I appeared before Ben, and he shrugged:

“You look good like you did in every dress I had seen on you.”

Was it a compliment, or did it really look the same to him? Still being in my practical mood, I believed in the latter.


Image taken from

Scolding Emma

Untrustworthy silence, fear in every move
You’re looking for balance, for some hopes to prove.
But every street lantern glares like a threat
You would be so happy if you could forget
The purpose, the reason, the only thing why
You were so brave to tell them good-bye
And go into the darkness -no matter where.
Your absence will leave your parents too scared
To read the small note you have left behind,
Thinking that it’s so worthy to find.
Shall they imagine there is any Rob
So crucial you were not able to stop?

(See Because of Rob. Chapter 1)



Image taken from

Because of Rob. Chapter 3

We didn’t talk on our way to his house, both a bit shocked by the situation. To me it seemed unbearably funny, I couldn’t form a word without improper laughter. He was probably making up the clearest possible explanation to his mother as his face looked stupefied and thoughtful at the same time.

He stopped at one of the sidewalk houses, very clean and cosy, large enough for not too large a family. He opened the door and let me go first. So it happened that I ran into his mother before she even noticed him. We both started. She looked at me with an astonishment, but her look was not in any way unkind or angry, so I felt courageous to speak first:

“Good afternoon, madam!”

“Good afternoon!” she answered slowly, her eyes still wide, but they returned to their normal shape as soon as she saw her son behind me.

“Ben?” it was her request to clarify the situation at last.

“Mum, she kindly agreed to help us with Mrs. E.”

“Oh,” she cried in delight, “you agreed to take part in our silly deal! What a sweet girl! Ben, and it seems you have been foolish enough not to ask even her name up to this very moment! You will never find a real girlfriend with your great communication skills!” she reproached him bitterly.


“It’s my fault, madam,” I  exclaimed, for I pitied Ben and felt a sudden attachment to his kind mother, “I should have asked myself, whose girlfriend, even if a fake one, I am to be for tonight and how Ben (I pronounced his name with a stress to show I had instantly learnt it) should call me. But I would feel much freer to speak if I knew how I should call you,” I concluded, looking at Ben’s mother.

To my great pleasure, she seemed to like my speech very much.

“You should probably call me Mrs. W., but I don’t like feeling old, so you may call me Caroline.”

“After breaking into your house I think it would be very rude of me. How about Mrs. Caroline?”

“It goes very well,” she laughed, obviously pleased, “so, what’s your name, dear?”

“Emily E., but you (I turned to Ben) will call me Emma.”

“How old are you, Emily?”

“Sixteen, Mrs. Caroline.”

“Ben is eighteen. Well. Where and when did you guys meet?”

“About an hour ago in the park,” I explained.

Mrs. Caroline looked at my backpack.

“ I arrived this morning and was desperate to find a place where to stay. I accepted your son’s offer hoping that you would be so kind and tell me where I could find a cheap room or apartment to rent. That’s the share I want,” I turned to Ben again.

“If something, you can live with us for a while.”

“You are my good fairy, Mrs. Caroline! I don’t know how I will ever repay you!”

“You will do it tonight,” Mrs. Caroline winked, “we should only get you prepared for the occasion,” she added, critically observing my outfit I felt so ashamed of now.


Image taken from

Because of Rob. Chapter 2

I stepped out on the platform to be completely dazzled by city lights and city noises. I hadn’t realised by then what the word city really meant. It was speed in its purest expression. The speed of those lights blinding me. The speed of the crowd wave carrying me. I felt somewhat clumsy and stupid for the first time in my life, and you know what – feeling stupid turned out to be completely insufferable, much worse than being called a Crowned Bookworm. Now it seemed kind of a praise. The praise I had run away from. That’s what I did now. I ran again. Only directly. Physically. Until I pressed my back against the cool wall, thinking – everyone is looking at me, everyone sees how bewildered I am, everyone is laughing at me.

But then I realised that they hadn’t even noticed me. They didn’t know I had arrived. They had the crowd, not me. Not my story. I didn’t exist there.


Emma, you have come here to face this life, not to run away from it. You have made the first great step. An absurd, but right one, so do not let yourself regret it and hide here trembling. Go further – I was saying to myself. Nobody can ever make us move but ourselves, because we listen to nobody else. Especially at sixteen.

So – what would my next great step be?


Despite the fact that it was a hot summer day and the warmed-up park lanes and banks could be very tempting to sleep on at night, I was not this romantic to do so. But I also had no idea of where I could find a home. Newspaper advertisements were excluded – I was too an impatient sort of girl to go through them. Knocking randomly at people’s doors was a direct way to spending the night Scotland Yard and then being sent back to my parents. Impossible. I decided just to walk around a bit until some genius thought might occur to me. I was well aware it wouldn’t. But I didn’t have any other option.

After about two hours of wandering I was becoming hysterical. I was ready to kill myself for climbing out of the window at damn romantic summer midnight, having materialistic ambitions of personal growth. I thought of my parents who definitely assumed their daughter had gone crazy. Clinically crazy. They were certainly cursing me and cursing themselves. And the policemen, troubled by my parents, were also cursing me. And I was cursing me. I felt so damn cursed.

I sat on the bank and stared before me. I had been sitting so for a while until I realised someone else was staring at me during the last few seconds. I turned my head very rapidly, meaning what the hell do you want from me? But I didn’t say it aloud, for it was changed at once by a girly-curious wow, who are you?, as handsome guys always bring up such an interest. And it was a handsome guy. Dark eyes, brown hair, clean look, tall and sportive body. I raised my eyebrows, thinking – not bad. And it got even better, when he almost ran to me and asked anxiously:

“Will you be my girlfriend?” and rubbed his forehead in an obvious confusion.

I left my eyes wide open, took a deep breath and pressed out the only word I had in mind:


My ability to speak brought him into higher spirits:

“No, I mean… will you be so kind as to act as my girlfriend only for tonight?”

“A rather perverse offer, you know!”

I was talking freely. I saw that, despite his film star appearance and such a brutal pick-up line he was kind of afraid of me.

“Oh no, you’ve misunderstood me again! I’m only asking you to come to a party organized by my mother’s friends and be presented to the guests as my girlfriend. You see, my mother has made a deal with the hosts that I will finally bring a girlfriend with me. All you will have to do is to dance with me a bit and not to kill me if I kiss your cheek considering it part of the game. I just want to please my mum.”

He said the last phrase with such a genuine childish expression (although he looked a couple of years older than me), that I couldn’t help exclaiming:

“How sweet!”

“So you agree?”

What other choice did I have? At least I would meet some people who could probably help me, although I didn’t believe much in the huge quantity of compassionate souls.

“Will your mother be aware it’s only a trick?”

“Sure. I am not good at lying to her. Her friends are millionaires, you know, so we’d better win,” he winked.

“Okay. But I will also want my share,” I winked back and laughed at his being confused again.


Image taken from Daily Mail

Because of Rob. Chapter 1

Emily J. has never been a reasonable girl. You see, I adore self-criticism. But what else can be said, if at the age of sixteen I climbed out of my bedroom’s window right at midnight (for I wanted everything to look as romantic as possible) and caught the first train that arrived at the deserted station at 4 a.m. and took me to London. A little comment on this – my parents didn’t have the slightest notion of my most spontaneous change of place. I had left them a note on the windowsill:

Had a quarrel with Rob. Set off in search for a better boyfriend. Love, Emma.

Note: Yes, my given name is Emily. But it has always sounded too soft and lady-like for the currently rebellious me. Therefore – Emma. Deal with it.

It is quite obvious that Rob was an imaginary alien, that I had never had a boyfriend, and, as a result, no guy could be brought to responsibility for quarreling with me. Neither did I have any intention to find one to quarrel with.


I was just fed up with everyone and everything, especially my schoolmates who kept on calling me a Crowned Bookworm.

It is strongly believed that love for books equals arrogance. At least here. I couldn’t go on like this. But I left for London not to throw out all my brain and prove I am one of those common glamorous blondes guys usually fall for. To start with, despite having long fair hair, luckily, they are darker. As to my eyes, my friend Eliza, one of the few adequate people of my acquaintance (gosh, I really DO sound arrogant, I’ve caught their virus!), used to say: “Emma, no matter what a nice singing voice you might have, blue-eyed soul is forbidden to you from the start.” True. They happened to be brown.

I was aware I was pretty enough for London (arrogant again, no?), but what really bothered me was – how the hell was I going to dress up all that sufficient beauty? You see, my style could be defined as dark-blue jeans and a loose shirt. Usually checked. If I want to look like a stylish bitch – tied up with a belt. That’s what I really loved. It gave me the feeling of a childish country freedom.

But, becoming a sixteen-year-old with a bitter sense of humour and somewhat poisonous manner of leading dialogues, you suddenly begin to understand that one freedom can be greater than another. An illogical thought, but very true. You throw yourself into this controversial discovery just to prove that you CAN. What exactly – it’s very unclear, especially to you. But it’s too late to pull back – one leg is already hanging from a windowsill, your backpack falls onto the wet grass, you are balancing yourself with a great difficulty to leave a genius note for your parents (leaving a note of any kind in such a moment is a sign of great affection, believe me), then you jump down next to your backpack, make sure the belt you have tied up your shirt with is in the right place… and you are already having a nap in the train which is taking you to places you have seen only on the map or in the movies. It’s a great step. And great steps are usually absurd. At least for me.


P.S. All persons and events portrayed in the story are fictitious. The only real name here is London.

Image taken from She Scribes