Spring, Week 2, Year 4
Nick had a lot to think about. His crush on Claudia Worthington was fairly manageable at the moment, as long as he didn’t see her too often. He had other goals in mind, things he wanted to accomplish. It was vital he wasn’t distracted by those thoughts.
After a morning workout, he decided it was time to focus on something a little more cultural and instead of thinking about Claudia, Nick travelled over to Perringbury to visit the Infinity Hall. The paintings were stunning and true masterpieces, even to Nick’s untrained eye.
“Marvellous, aren’t they?” A voice boomed from behind him. Turning around, Nick saw the Duke of Beckwell striding towards him. “My wife’s a very talented artist.”
“Of course. I forgot she was your wife.” Nick gestured to the paintings. “They’re lovely.”
“Yes, she is a most talented artist. She painted all the portraits in the Founders Exhibition, don’t you know. She’s going to be mentoring painters here soon.” George nodded at Nick. “Will you be participating?”
“Oh, I don’t think so.” Nick shook his head. “I’m something of a nobody when it comes to art. I just love looking at the paintings.”
“Well, the classes will be held here. She’ll be starting them soon. The details will be available at reception, if you change your mind.” Tipping his hat, George went on his way, leaving Nick to mull over the idea.
James invited Nick over after Nick had finished a few odd jobs and, unable to think of a valid excuse, he reluctantly agreed. He somehow ended up in James and Claudia’s bedroom, talking to Claudia. Which then led to laying on the grass, gazing at the cloud formations.
“Claudia, this is a bit awkward,” Nick began. They’d moved to the picnic table out the back of their houses and Nick decided it was time to find out where things stood. “We’ve been talking for ages and you call round quite often. What exactly are we doing here?”
“What do you mean?” Claudia asked, baffled.
“I mean, we talk all the time. Every time I try not to see you, you or your husband suddenly appear. I mean, you and James aren’t happy, are you?”
“Well, not really. I don’t know, it’s complicated.” Claudia sighed.
“Look, I’m going to be honest here,” Nick said, leaning forward. “I’m attracted to you. But I need to know what we’re doing. Where we’re going.”
“Oh. I see. Erm, look, can I think it over?” Claudia widened her eyes in surprise.
Nick sighed. “Sure. But I don’t want to hang around for ever. I’ve got a life too, you know.” He stood up. “See you.”
As Nick walked home, he sighed. That meeting hadn’t gone quite according to plan and it was a little depressing.
Nick spent the next few days avoiding the Worthingtons as much as possible. Instead, he focused on his fitness and as an added bonus, roller skating. He was getting good enough to show off with backflips.
The weekend was drawing near. It was Easter and there was still no word from Claudia. Nick sipped his coffee and contemplated where to go from here. He took the silence as being a ‘not interested’ response, so it was high time he focused on something, and preferably someone, else.
He’d been giving George’s suggestions a lot of thought and he’d decided to go ahead and start painting. He wasn’t going to join Alexandra’s group but instead, he’d go over to the Infinity Hall and paint by himself.
If only Claudia’s portrait wasn’t so inspiring…
Nick achieved level 7 Fitness but didn’t unlock anything this week.
Up next: Stella Humphreys!