Charles sighed theatrically. “Tiffany, you’re driving me to distraction. Way beyond the edge of reason.”
Tiffany chuckled. “You really are an ass. And such a melodramatic fool.”
“I know. But you do love it.” He curled his arm round her waist and pulled her closer, laying a soft kiss on her cheek. “Like I love you.”
Tiffany flushed, still finding a thrill in it whenever he said those three words. She leaned back from him, finding pleasure in looking at him. Knowing he was committed to her when he could so easily have been with anyone else she knew. Heady stuff.
“You’re such a sap. And I love you too.”
The two of them sat side-by-side on the bench, jammed together like an incestuous pair of Siamese twins, entertaining the park’s ducks for a while longer while engaging in the usual cupping and fumbling common to a suburban Sunday afternoon until, hearing the tones of the church clock, Tiffany apologised and wriggled free.
“You know how much it hurts me,” she said, looking at him soft-eyed, running her fingers through his locs. “But..”
“I know.” Charles sighed again, tempering his mood. “Your folks.”
Tiffany stood, re-buttoning and smoothing her dress as she became ‘proper’ again. Readying herself for the walk home. “I’ll speak to them again, I promise. They’re coming round to the thought of you. Little by little.”
Charles rose beside her, his smile lacking his earlier exuberance. “Trust you to have the only old-fashioned white parents in Birmingham. But I can wait. You’re worth it.”