As he lies in bed Saturday morning, Will Marshall reflects on the previous night's trick that he'd picked up at the club. Will never bothers to learn the names of his tricks since he shows them the door as soon as they're done. Oddly, though, he can't remember seeing Wotshisname out. As this realization hits, he hears a crash somewhere in his flat. Turns out Wotshisname -- Jamie -- made Will breakfast ... and leaves his number behind when he does finally go.
Days pass, but try as hard as he might, Will can't get Jamie out of his mind. Every trick is compared to Jamie and is found wanting. Even his cat seems to be missing Jamie. And the fact Jamie is a teacher, something that was revealed during the unexpected breakfast, endears him to Will's mother, who despairs of her son ever settling down.
Somewhere in his messy flat is the scrap of paper with Jamie's number. It wouldn't hurt to find it and put it in his phone, just in case. It's not like he'd actually call the man or anything. After all, he never does the same trick twice, right?
“Well,” I said once we’d finished the toast. I was starting to get uncomfortable at Jamie’s continued presence. This was why I never let tricks stay the night as the goodbyes were really awkward.
“You sure I can’t clean up? It won’t take me long.”
“No, it’s okay. I’ll do it later.”
Jamie looked at me ... really looked at me and I fidgeted under his intense gaze.
Breaking eye contact, I looked up at the wall clock and got to my feet. Thinking quickly, I said, “God, is that the time. I promised I’d go see my mum this morning.”
“Oh, yes, of course.” Jamie put his coffee mug on top of his plate, pushed his chair back, and got to his feet.
Unable to stop myself, I added, “Since Dad left, Mum needs me to do little jobs around the house for her and ...” I gestured vaguely. If anything, Mum was more practical with fixing things than I was.
Jamie smiled. “So chivalrous. Just like your twelfth century namesake.”
“Well, I don’t know about that.” I blushed and looked away. I’d laid it on too thick and was beginning to wish I hadn’t.
Jamie touched my cheek. “You’re a good man, William Marshall.”
I swallowed. I was far from being a good man, but I couldn’t burst his bubble now.
Jamie pulled what looked like a receipt out of his pocket. Taking a pencil out of the jam jar of oddments on the table, he began to write. I closed my eyes, having a pretty good idea what he was doing. Why was he making this harder? Couldn’t he just leave with a “thanks for the fuck?”
“If you ever want to do this again, then ...” He replaced the pencil in the jar. “Well, you have my number.”
Did he know I wouldn’t call him? That made me feel even worse. Damn him! “Well, we’ll see.”
Jamie bent to say goodbye to Damien, who rubbed himself against Jamie’s ankles. When Jamie straightened and stepped away, Damien followed, weaving himself around Jamie’s legs, causing Jamie to stumble. “Hey, you’ll have me over.” Jamie picked Damien up, rubbed a spot under his chin, then handed the cat to me. “Bye then.”
And with that, Jamie left. The door had barely closed before Damien transformed from affectionate pet into his usual persona of demon-possessed feline. I managed to put him down before his claws or teeth drew blood. Once on the floor, he ran into the hallway, no doubt to follow Jamie. At the front door, Damien turned around and gave me a disgusted look.
“Oh, shut up.”