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 The Galway Girl - A Valentines Day Fic

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PostSubject: The Galway Girl - A Valentines Day Fic   Thu Feb 21, 2008 2:45 pm

TITLE: The Galway Girl - A Valentines Fic (Rated 13).
AUTHOR: Kumiko
DISCLAIMER: The characters mentioned in this story own themselves and have something to do with Polydor (its all in the red tape). This is based on a real life person.
SETTING: 1997 New York
AUTHOR’S NOTES: This story was a challenge fic, submitted to TTTV for Valentines Day.

This story is fiction only. Any event, location that may fit their real locations or connection between the characters and the fictional characters is purely coincidental.
Thanks for reading.

The Galway Girl

St. Valentines Day was just another excuse for Hallmark to rob some poor sap who felt the need to declare their love to someone whom, on any normal day, wouldn’t have the courage to even say ‘hi’ to. It was a gigantic swindle and had been going on for centuries, well, at least for as long as Hallmark and such companies have been scribing ridiculous limericks inside of cards. You probably think I’m bitter and that I’m only saying all this because I’ve never received a Valentines card. Well, that’s where you’re wrong. I’d received plenty cards at school, and bought a few for some kid who didn’t give me the time of day. I really wasted a few quid on him, not that I realised it then. I was – what you might call – infatuated, and for two hundred dollars an hour a shrink would most likely tell me it was the root cause of all my failed relationships since. Okay, I am bitter – so shoot me. However, don’t start thinking I am the type of person who locks myself away in my room until it’s all over. Stuffing chocolates into my mouth while watching romantic movies starring Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan, waiting for them to meet and kiss for the first time, because deep down inside I’m wishing that such things were real. Wishing that if it could happen to them it could happen to anyone, including me. That’s not me – anymore.

14th February 1997

“Elvie, will you get down here, we’re already twenty minutes late…” Ciara yelled upstairs and plonked down on the bottom step, desperately bored. I could hear her sighing from my room. Urgently I hurried, fighting to change from my work clothes into something half-decent. I stabbed my earlobe with an earring, and hissed blinking back the tears. I should’ve been watching what I was doing, but fearing Ciara was about to storm upstairs and drag me back down, fully clothed or not. I hurried as fast as I could, multitasking, attempting to slip on my flat shoes, put on my earrings and do my hair all at the same time.

Ciara and I have been friends since school. We’ve been together through almost everything and as opposed to me; she was still searching for her special Valentine. She had a very specific idea about what kind of man she wants. “A guy who would move the hair away from her eyes, then kiss her. A guy who’d hold her hand in line at the mall and make all the other girls jealous. Someone who would think she was beautiful even if she was in her ‘comfy’ clothes; someone who’d sing to her at random moments, no matter how bad his voice was…” etcetera, etcetera. No amount of persuasion is going to convince her that men like that just didn’t exist anymore.
I shouted back down at her, “I’m coming, gawd…” as I ran downstairs, grabbing my jacket and answering Ciara’s twenty questions as to why it is I didn’t get out of work earlier because I knew we were going out tonight. This was our night – yada, yada, yada…

I followed Ciara out through the front door, locking it behind me, then apologised profusely to the cab driver for keeping him waiting. What a great start to the evening it was.

We did this every year. Having vowed to each other if neither of us were married or hadn’t yet sold our souls to the devil and succumbed to gratuitous runes of St. Valentine, we would spend the evening together and get absolutely obliterated.

I was actually dreading the day Ciara found her perfect man; I’d already thrown out my copy of Sleepless in Seattle.

The cab pulled up outside the pub and I scrambled out of the backseat while stuffing some dollar bills through the divide and slammed the door behind me. I stood next to Ciara looking up at the sign neon sign flashing ‘Morgan’s’ while I flattening my skirt, running my hands over my behind in order to iron out the creases and braced myself for the night ahead, then asked Ciara, “Are we ready?”
She nodded. “How do I look?” She asked and turned to face me, striking a pose, as if she was modelling for some beauty competition.
“Desperate?” I replied.
“Some best friend you turned out to be.”
“Oh Ci, you know I didn’t mean that…” I rolled my eyes and hurried after her as she strode into the bar. The door opened and I immediately felt the vibrations from the Irish folk music, which reverberated around the pub and poured out of every vent onto the street.
Was I getting old, or was the music loud?
I shouted over the din, but when it appeared obvious Ciara couldn’t understand a word, I began signalling for her to find a table while went and bought the first round of drinks.
I approached the bar, trying to squeeze my way in through the crowds that surrounded it, not all of them wanting a drink. It was ridiculous, I thought as I fought my way past a tall bald-headed man who looked like he was going to explode at any moment. Maybe he’d already had too much to drink.
“Sorry,” I apologised quickly when he fixed me with his dark fiery eyes and I almost wished I’d waited until he moved away before I attempted to push past him. Suddenly I felt an arm around my shoulder, it pulled me closer to the bar and I turned quickly, eyeballing the person whose arm it was.
“You’re okay; he thinks you’re with me…” he said.
He leaned closer, shouting into my ear above the music, but I heard him fine the first time.
“I said….”
“I heard you… what do you mean – ‘with you’?”
“Well I don’t think he was too chuffed that you were trying to jump the queue…” The man nodded towards ‘baldy’ who still appeared to be firing daggers from his eyes at us. I try to smile and then turned my head back towards Mr. Helpful.
“Ooops… maybe I should buy him a drink too…”
“Nah, he looks like he’s had enough,” he replied and I had to agree with him.
“Let me buy you a drink…”
“Oh no that’s alright; I’m with a friend….”
“Oh… sorry…”
I’d seen that look before, he thought I meant a guy-friend and I shook my head, “No girlfriend…” I corrected him.
“Oh?” His eyebrows rose curiously.
Oh god, it couldn’t get much worse I thought, but instead shrugged my shoulders. It was too much bother trying to set him straight. What did it matter anyway? It wasn’t as if I was there to pull a man. I’d promised Ciara a night out with no men invited.
”Thanks anyway,” I smiled and proceeded to order two glasses of wine.
When the drinks came, I said goodbye to the friendly man and managed find my table with hardly a drop spilled, which was quite lucky considering the amount of people around.
“What kept you?” Ciara yelled. Why she had to sit near the speakers, I didn’t know and pointed towards the bar attempting to explain how long it took to get served, only when I glanced over to where I was pointing, the guy was looking at us, smiling and waving.
“Cute…” Ciara smiled and waved back at him.
“What…. No, he just…Don’t wave!” I panicked and endeavoured to slap her hand down to stop her.
“What? He’s cute…” She winked at me. “I wonder if he’s married or gay.”
“I didn’t see a wedding ring…” I replied and gasped, realising that I’d bothered to take in that small detail, why would I?
“Must be gay then, they always are…” She said taking a sip of wine nonchalantly.
“Can’t say I know…” I sighed. I couldn’t even remember the last time I’d gotten excited about anything that didn’t include batteries.
“Then it’s about time you did….” Ciara said and put down her glass. “Just ask him, he doesn’t look like he’s gonna bite,” she giggled. “Although I wouldn’t complain if he did…”
“Nooo…” I insisted, stubbornly, “Anyway, I can pursue guys at any time, but this is Valentines Day, our sabbatical day.” I said as if she’d forgotten. I knew she was only trying to help, but I wished she wouldn’t. I’d passed my sell by date anyway. Guys like him usually chased after younger girls and I was going to be 30… soon.
Yeah, in three years…
I pushed the thought to the back of my mind and changed the subject, which suddenly became a lot easier as the band decided to take a reprieve.
By the time the band returned to the small stage, Ciara and I were swaying merrily, huddled together, giggling as we sized up each customer that entered the bar,
“That’s not his wife…” Ciara said.
“I bet he’s a vicar and she’s a tart…or vice versa...” I snickered.
“Unless he’s her husband’s brother…” Ciara added.
“Ooooh… wait till her man finds out, there’s going to be soooo much trouble,” I slurred and lifted the glass up to my mouth to take another sip only to find it empty. “You’re turn…”
“No it’s not; I got the last round in…” Ciara argued. I turned to stare at her incredulously, frowning, attempting to remember whose turn it was. The familiar warmth washed over me and I shook my head trying to clear it, and felt the liquid and probably lots of other rubbish swimming about inside. God I was so drunk.
I glanced across the room and spotted my friend who was still hanging around, propped up against the bar, watching the stage as the band prepared to start up again. Briefly, Ciara’s words came back to me – ‘he’s either married or gay’.
We’d already established he wasn’t married. Perhaps he had a girlfriend back home, or maybe he was like me, sworn off men – or in his case women – and no longer believed in Valentines Day.
I decided it was my turn after all, got up, and wobbled towards the bar.
“Say hi to your cute friend for me,” Ciara called after me and I stuck my hand behind my back extending a middle finger at her. I heard her cackle as I reached the bar. I decided she was even more wasted than I was and ordered two cokes when the barman finally served me.

While waiting for the drinks, I turned toward the nice guy who was still facing the stage unaware of my presence. His heel was tapping against the stool leg in time with the beat of the drums.
“So which is it?” I asked.
He turned his head, frowning, it seemed he hadn’t heard or understood me.
“I was just wondering, which category you fall into you… since you’re not married,” I indicated toward his finger showing no wedding band, or any sign that he’d worn one since there was no tan line either. “Usually it’s gay or married and I can see that you’re neither of those so either you, A. Have a girlfriend back home in England or B. You’re boycotting Valentine’s Day this year….”

An Artistic Journey
“You are the music while the music lasts.” - T S Eliot.

Last edited by kumiko on Fri Mar 07, 2008 11:40 pm; edited 1 time in total
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PostSubject: Re: The Galway Girl - A Valentines Day Fic   Thu Feb 21, 2008 2:46 pm

“How do you know I’m not gay?” He laughed.
“Well considering the way you saved me from Lex Luther earlier on…” I smirked. I noticed a faint shade of pink as it flushed his cheeks and realised he was blushing.
“Sorry about that…” he apologised.
“No… don’t be… I appreciated it.” I smiled comfortingly, “So… there must be a lucky lady… why isn’t she here tonight?”
“No I’m afraid I’m not that lucky.” He confirmed and glanced away, his attention fell again to the band and I felt stupidly awkward.
“I’m sorry…” I said. He turned his head back towards me, and shrugged. I then continued, “If it’s any consolation all women are B-I-T-C-H-E-S.” I winked and smiled.
He frowned, obviously playing along and squeezed his eyes closed pretending to work out the spelling. A few moments later his eyelids flick open and a grin spread across his face.
“So what about you?” He asked.
“What about me?” I replied, perplexed, forgetting for a moment about the categories I used to strike up conversation with him. I was already wondering what crazy woman dumped him.
“Gay or married?” he smirked.
I wrinkled my nose and shook my head. “Neither, unfortunately,” I smiled and then shrugged indifferently, “I just had an epiphany once that all men are D-O-G-S…”
“You know you can say the word… it would save me trying to work out what you’re trying to say…”
I laughed and blushed, “Sorry…”
The barman cleared his throat as he stood waiting for his money, “Oh… thanks,” I suddenly said realising he was there. He didn’t reply and just took his money then moved to serve another customer. “How rude,” I muttered. I picked up the glasses of coke and glanced over at my table where Ciara appeared to have passed out. Her cheek lay flush with the surface of the table and I rolled my eyes. She was a goner.
I cleared my throat and stood hovering next to the nice guy, wondering whether it was a bad idea to invite him to join us.
“You alright with those drinks?” He turned noticing I was still there.
“I was actually wondering if you wanted to come and sit with us…”
“Isn’t that against your policy?” He inquired arching his brow at me.
“Well since you’re here for the same reason I think we can adjust the rules slightly to fit…” I smiled and tilted my head to the side, indicating for him to follow. He got up and picked up his glass.

As we arrived, I placed the coke down in front of Ciara and tapped her shoulder. She jumped up; she looked disorientated and searched around frantically as if she was looking for where the fire was.
“Calm down Ciara…” I tapped her face, bringing her around.
“Is she okay?” the guy asked, concernedly.

“She’s fine, just a little too much to drink,” I chuckled and shoved the coke into her hand, forcing her to take a few sips, knowing it was what needed.
“Mmmmm…” she smiled. Then for the first time, she appeared to notice we had company. “Oooh, Elvie, it’s…”
“I know I invited him to join us…”
“Ooooh… did you?”
“Yes... neither…”
The man was frowning, attempting to follow the conversation back and forth but wasn’t making any sense of it.
“Damn,” Ciara murmured, “I was so sure he was…” I slapped my hand over her mouth and gave her a warning glare, then dropped my hand away and smiled trying to appear normal as I glanced at him. “….married.” she finished.
I breathed a sigh of relief that she didn’t say it.
“No… I’m not… nor am I gay…” he chuckled.
Ciara and I both looked at each other and then at him and I felt my face flush beet red. I felt like such an idiot. He probably thought we’d been talking about him all this time trying to squeeze him into our little categories like Bridget Jones.
“So… what’s your name?” Ciara asked, obviously not feeling half as stupid as I did.
“Gary, it’s Gary…” he said.
“Well Gary, I’m Ciara and this is my friend Elvie.” She introduced us. I just sat there and smiled at him suddenly feeling very shy.
“L-V?” he asked, “Is this another spelling test?”
It was Ciara’s turn to look confused now and I smiled.
“No… its spelt E-L-V-I-E…”
“Oh…. Not L-V as in little voice then…”
“Well that would be a bit ironic wouldn’t it?” I chuckled.
“I’d say,” he agreed.
Soon we we’re lost in conversation, sometimes having to raise our voices above the music but still managed to understand each other. He had a great sense of humour and Ciara and I often found our selves laughing at his jokes.
Ciara was right about one thing; he was cute and had a beautiful smile, which reached his eyes.

During the next break, he began to tell us about how he came to be here in New York. How he’d been in a band, which recently split up and his manager thinking that he could make it in America had sent him over to promote his music. However, he was getting very tired and wanted to get back home to his family.
I sympathised with him, knowing partly how he felt. It had been a long time since I’d been home. After leaving college, Ciara and I decided we needed to travel and came straight to America. We both managed to secure good jobs working for the same PR Company. I loved living here, but I did miss home. I missed my mum’s cooking.
Home for us was England, but I was actually born in a small Irish town, Galway.
Suddenly Ciara jumped up when the band began to play a favourite song. Gary and I sat watching, laughing as she danced about in front of the table, shouting out the lyrics, “How does it feel…how does it feel…to be without a home… like a rolling stone!”
Apparently, Ciara wasn’t the only one who loved this song, as many others began to join in with her and suddenly it became a party. People who’d spent most of the evening huddled together around tables with their friends were now dancing with strangers, glasses chinking together as the band covered one classic after another. I remained in my seat for as long as possible, but was soon forced out of it, as was Gary when my favourite song began to play.
“Well, I took a stroll on the old long walk.
Of a day -I-ay-I-ay
I met a little girl and we stopped to talk
Of a fine soft day -I-ay-I-ay
And I ask you, friend, what's a fella to do
'Cause her hair was black and her eyes were blue
And I knew right then I'd be takin' a whirl
'Round the Salthill Prom with a Galway girl…”

Ciara threw her arm around me and I put my arm around her waist as we danced together singing at the top of our voices. It appeared then that Gary was trying to sit down unnoticed and Ciara grabbed his arm and pulled back, wrapping her arm around his neck, forcing him to comply. I couldn’t help but giggle, and gave him a comforting wink. When the song finished, the music began to die down again for a moment. Still giddy and giggly from the excitement, I managed to find my seat and Gary squeezed in next to me, also chuckling.
“Sorry about that….” I apologised to him.
“It’s alright,” he grinned. “I actually enjoyed it… long time since I’ve done something like that…”
“I take it country’s not your thing…” I chuckled.
He shook his head slowly, “How could you tell?”
“Oh… it’s not hard…” I laughed and so did he.
Ciara apparently had started something. I spotted her across the other side of the pub, where she’d drifted off and was stirring up another party, trying to get everyone to dance when the music began again. I had to hand it to her; she could get people enjoying themselves at the drop of a hat, no matter where she went.
“She’s quite a lively one in’t she…” Gary observed as he watched her dancing with some random guy.
“She’s a good'un,” I smiled, nodding in agreement.

I found myself lost in conversation once again. Answering his questions and asking a few of my own, the hardest one being – why I’d sworn off guys.
“Well….” I started. “He was a big country and western fan; I found I couldn’t compete with that…” I said seriously.
His eyes began to search my face as he tried to decide whether I was joking around or not. I didn’t last long until I started smiling and gave the game away.
“Oh thank god,” Gary laughed.
“Sorry… bad joke…”
“Very bad…” he agreed.
“No the real reason… was because I stupidly fell for a guy who after proposing to me, left out a small, but important detail…”
“Oh God… he was married already…” Gary finished and turned to towards me.
I remained seated facing forward and nodded my head while staring down at my hands in my lap.
The music from the stage seemed to change to blend with my mood. I felt tears well up and continue to spill down my cheeks. Embarrassed I quickly got up and ran outside to try to and get a hold of myself. I wasn’t sure what I was most upset about. Crying because the memory of what I had once and lost or because I’d humiliated myself in front of a total stranger.
I heard the music grow louder for a moment as the bar door opened then swung closed and then a pair of strong arms wrapped themselves around me. I cried as though months of built-up anguish came tumbling out at once. He didn’t say anything, but instead stroked his hand over my hair and rocked softly from side to side in time with the ballad which drifted out onto the street.
When it felt as though all of the tears had dried up, I used my sleeves to wipe my cheeks and turned around to face him, though I daren’t look in his eyes yet. “Sorry…”
“There’s no need to be sorry…” he replied quietly, his thumb brushed over my face wiping away the remnants of tears. “I’m just glad I got to be the one to hold you while you cried.”
I lifted my head up to stare at him and frowned. “You don’t have to keep being nice to me…”
“Oh, I beg to differ… don’t you know it’s written down in a book somewhere… the trouble is most men have forgotten about it and that’s why they act like such… D-O-G-S…” he smiled softly.
I felt myself smiling back and as I became lost, staring in his eyes, his lips covered mine in a warm tender kiss that seemed to last forever.
The sound of someone clearing their throat, broke us apart and I looked up to see a man hovering around us looking awkward. “Are you the owner of a red-haired party girl?”
I looked at Gary, burst out laughing, and nodded. “Ciara… what’s she done now?”
“I think she’s had too much to drink…”
“Ooops…” both Gary and I said in unison. We followed the man back inside the bar to find Ciara lying across the foot of the stage, and took her home.

14th February 1998.

There was a knock at the door and I tried to ignore it, glancing at the clock, which read 8 AM. It was far too early to get up. I didn’t have to be in work until ten-thirty. That gave me a whole extra hour to sleep. The doorbell started ringing and someone was shouting and no matter how hard I pressed the pillow over my head, the sound wasn’t going away.
I dragged myself out of bed and slipped into my nightgown as I made my way through the apartment to answer the door. “Persistent little bugger aren’t y…” I suddenly gasped as I came face to face with the largest bouquet of roses I’d seen in my life. Then out from behind, peered a familiar face and I screamed, clapping my hands like an excited child. Forgetting about the flowers as they lowered and sat on the floor, I jumped into his arms and wrapped my legs tightly around his waist and my arms around his neck, covering his face with kisses. I’d missed him so much.
The summer of ’97, Gary had returned to England to do some writing and promotional work around Europe and I wasn’t expecting him back until the middle of March. Yet here he was carrying me inside, kicking the front door closed, continuing through the apartment. He put me on the sofa and collapsed down next to me, pulling me into his arms.
“Happy Valentine’s Day, babe…” He grinned.
“Happy Valentine’s Day, Gary…”
"Are you going to bend those rules for me again this year?"

An Artistic Journey
“You are the music while the music lasts.” - T S Eliot.
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PostSubject: Re: The Galway Girl - A Valentines Day Fic   Thu Feb 21, 2008 3:08 pm

That was incredible Clap no wonder you were one of the winners of that challenge, you wrote it so well could picture every scene.


Thanks Lauren takethat for the avi and sig
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PostSubject: Re: The Galway Girl - A Valentines Day Fic   Thu Feb 21, 2008 3:10 pm

Hyper I LOVE IT!!!! Clap

you know I do hun. That was absolutely brilliant!!!

You SOOO deserved to win that challenge Grin Clap


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PostSubject: Re: The Galway Girl - A Valentines Day Fic   Thu Feb 21, 2008 4:16 pm

That was absolutely amazing! Clap
I'm glad you won that challenge. You deserved it! Kiss
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PostSubject: Re: The Galway Girl - A Valentines Day Fic   Fri Feb 22, 2008 1:04 pm

Brilliant Clap Clap Clap Well done Grin
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PostSubject: Re: The Galway Girl - A Valentines Day Fic   Fri Feb 22, 2008 10:57 pm

Clap Clap

Brilliant Kumiko. Well done for winning!

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PostSubject: Re: The Galway Girl - A Valentines Day Fic   Sat Feb 23, 2008 3:57 pm

Brilliant hun, pure brilliance!!! Well done for winning the challenge, you definately deserved it!


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