16. Back on the Road

16. Back on the Road

A Chapter by Peter Rogerson



Jennifer and Darren watched the elderly Albert Durrell as he slowly ambled off, pausing every so often to make quite sure of his place on the soil under his feet. He certainly looked his age and they both felt their hearts warming to him.

I feel for him,” murmured Darren.

How?” asked Jennifer.

I’ll show you,” replied Darren, and he took Jennifer by one hand and turned her gently until she was facing him and then planted a big kiss firmly on her gorgeous mouth.

That,” he said when he had kissed her for quite long enough, “think of forgetting a moment like that, and all the moments like that we’ve had while we’ve been friends. And all the other things we do, secret, private things that really ought to stay in our memories for ever, yet if we’re going to grow up to be anything like old Albert we’ll probably forget far too quickly that most of them ever happened.”

What you’re trying to say is we should make them so unforgettable that they’re stuck in our minds until Kingdom come,” smiled Jennifer, “and if that’s what you mean, I’m all for it. And not just kisses… like when we cuddle in private. And touch each other. I really like being touched by you. Everywhere. My hair, my everything…”

The same to me,” groaned Darren, aware that his shorts were reacting to his thoughts. “But won’t these things stay with us because they’re already too powerful to forget?”

Jennifer frowned. “Albert had a Jennifer. He said so. He said a lot about how he felt when they were together, and then the years raced past. She was with another bloke, and it was that he remembered. Then he found out that she was no more, and it hurt him to tell us that he never even said goodbye to her. But not just to her. To the memories he may have had, some faded, some almost blank, but memories none-the-less.”

And then he’ll be gone. He’s quite old and crotchety already, and it’ll be as if none of the heart-racing sexy things the two of them did together never happened,” whispered Darren, “and there’s another thing. He said he owned this farm and no it’s run by his grandson. But not his Jennifer’s grandson. She didn’t become his wife, though he remembers her. Come on, let’s not get morbid, we’re going to the seaside!”

Together in a tent, just the two of us,” sighed Jennifer. “Tell me, Darren, what are your jim-jams like?”

My pyjamas? Now the truth about them would be telling…”

You have brought some, I hope.”

Of course I have!” he responded indignantly, “but at home, in my room and on my own, I hardly ever wear pyjamas.

That’s rude!”

What? On my own? How can that be anything, especially not rude? But it is comfortable.

Because I’m the same,” she whispered, “though to please mum I have brought an old nightie with me which she made me swear I’d wear at night.”

And I’ve brought some pyjamas that I’ve grown out of,” grinned Darren, “It looks to me that nights with just the two of us might get quite interesting…”

I’ve got to remember Patsy Pantsdown,” Jennifer told him, “she said to me that the hardest thing to say to a boy you like is No. Because you don’t really want to say no at all…”

Mum gave me some rubbers…” he ventured. “Just in case, she said.”

Just in case of what?”

She didn’t say, but she was married to my dad and probably knows what us men are like when the blood’s surging and we’re in love.”

Are you in love, Darren?”

He avoided the question by changing the subject. “We’d best set off or we’ll never get there! Look. Albert’s already out of sight and you can hardly call him a racer!” He climbed onto his bike with a grimace. “Come on!” he added, with assumed cheerfulness.

You don’t really want to go further today when we could stay on this lovely grassy field, put the tent up, and … stay the night?” she suggested.

He looked appalled. “It’s not even lunch time yet!” he protested, “I know we haven’t exactly come far yet, but we must push on a bit further or, if we stay here in the tent, anything might happen…”

Yes?” she asked.

Well, Patsy Pantsdown might find herself with a companion in the maternity hospital,” he joked.

Never! But is that the sort of thing you want to do with me, Darren? Make me pregnant and have to live with me for ever, until we die of wrinkly old age?”

Not exactly … but I do like the bit about living with you for ever…”

You never answered my other question, Darren.”

Which one?”

About being in love. Are you in love, Darren, and if you are, who’s the lucky girl?”

You know both the answers, Jennifer.”

To be loved, and then, in two or four or ten years be in the arms of another, like Albert’s Jennifer?”


But the way Albert, with the huge privilege of a huge number of years, put it…?

I’m not him, I’m me, and you’re a different Jennifer in a different age. Come on! I can pedal this old wreck for a few miles more! I want to see the sea. I want to run on the sand and feel it between my toes!”

If that’s what you want… turning an afternoon of unforgettable romance down because you’ve got a sand fetish!”

There’ll be plenty of time when we get there. And you asked me about love. Yes, Jennifer, I know that I love you with all my sloppy heart. So come on to the seaside, the sand and the waves and let’s have some fun!”

Making love behind a sand dune?” she suggested.

She smiled at him, kissed him so briefly he hardly noticed it, and the two of them set off, she in front and he, struggling very soon, behind her.

© Peter Rogerson 13.05.21


© 2021 Peter Rogerson

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Added on May 13, 2021
Last Updated on May 13, 2021
Tags: teenage, love, memories, hopes


Peter Rogerson
Peter Rogerson

Forest Town, Nottinghamshire, United Kingdom

I am 77 years old, but as a single dad with four children that I had sole responsibility for I found myself driving insanity away by writing. At first it was short stories (all lost now, unfortunately.. more..