Dirty Daddies

Page 41

And then I see how low my cami is now it’s wet through. I see how you can see the scrappy lace of my old bra and the shape of my nipples poking through the fabric.
I think about Jack and Michael seeing me like this.
I think about Jack wanting me and Michael seeing how wrong he was for turning his back on having what could have been his.
I think about them getting hard when they see how much of a woman I really am under my baggy clothes and messy hair.
So I tug my top down just a bit more. Just enough that the camera shows more than it should. And then I smile a dirty smile and take the photo.
By the time I’ve finished up ditching Jack’s tools back where I found them, it’s later than usual. The lights are on in the kitchen when I kick off my muddy boots by the back door, and the kettle is already on. My heart is pumping as Jack steps in from the hallway, and my cheeks burn up as he does a double take at the state of me.
“What the–” he begins, and marches his way over.
“I’ve been out,” I tell him.
“No shit,” he says. He reaches behind me to grab a couple of mugs from the cupboard.
“I fell,” I tell him and he cocks an eyebrow.
“You look like you’ve been mud bathing.”
I fold my arms across my filthy tits. “I’ve been working.”
I nod, already feeling self-conscious about the big reveal I’ve been planning for days.
It feels so much more stupid now it’s nearly here.
I notice Jack’s only pulled out two mugs. “Where’s Michael?”
“Leaving do. Some temp worker from his office. He’ll be over tomorrow.”
My heart drops. “Tomorrow?”
Jack nods. “Will probably be a late one, these crappy socials normally are.”
“Only if you want to stay at them.” I can’t help feeling rejected, even though it’s stupid. I can’t help feeling like he should be as excited to get here as I am excited to see him, even though I hate him now.
“He’ll be over in the morning,” Jack says. “Give the guy a break, will you? He’s been fawning around you all pissing week already.”
He hasn’t been fawning around me at all, just trying to get me some shitty council accommodation, but I don’t say it.
I must look sad because Jack tips his head and sighs. “If you miss him so fucking much, maybe you should stop being such a cow when he’s here.”
“It’s complicated,” I say and he laughs.
“You’re fucking complicated, Carrie.” He stirs my tea, and I love the way he knows just how I like it now. He puts in just the right amount of milk and hands it over. “Where did you go?”
I gesture to my top. “For a browse around the shops, where does it look like I’ve pissing been?”
“Good. I’m glad you got out for some fresh air. Better for you than watching crappy daytime TV all your life. That shit will rot your brain, you know.”
And that’s when I decide to show him. Michael be damned.
I reach inside my pocket and pull out my mobile, and my fingers are shaking as I call up the gallery app. “I don’t watch fucking TV,” I tell him as I select the very first photo I took of my fencing. “I’ve been working.”
I nod and shove the handset at him. “Working, yeah. Sorting your shit fucking fencing out.”
I hold my breath as he flicks through the images, trying to pretend I’m not nervous as he checks it out. But I am nervous. I feel like my whole fucking soul is exposed to him.
If he says it’s shit, I’ll want to cry and I know it. If he says it’s no good, I’ll have to run away and never come back, because I’ll never want to see those fields again, even though I love them.
“You did this?” he asks and his eyes burn right into mine.
I nod. “Yeah.”
“All of it?”
I sigh. “Think I called out a maintenance crew? Yes, Jack, I did all of it.”
He keeps flicking through the images. “This is incredible. You’ve done every bloody paddock.”
I shake my head. “Not every one. There’s some at the top that need fixing up, but I’ll do them. I’ll finish up next week.”
He looks between me and the phone, and he’s impressed. My heart soars as I see it. He’s definitely impressed.
“I don’t know what to say,” he says.
“You could say thanks,” I tell him, and hate the way my tone is so fucking snarky all the time.
“Thank you,” he says and I feel like a bitch. “You’ve done an amazing job. I’m blown away.” He’s still flicking through the images, and I cringe as I register how many I’ve taken. So many fucking pictures of fences and bits of wood and fields from different angles. My memory card is jammed full of them. “I’ll pay you,” he adds. “You’ve more than earned it. This is worth way more than a bit of food and lodging.”