‘That’s it’, uttered Algy Carterhouse, ‘that’s it.’ His heart was thumping wildly. He felt sick. He clutched the phone in desperation. He could not look his wife’s drawn face in the eyes.
‘Minerva’, he cried, ‘I promise you we’ll sort this out.’
The pair of them sat frozen on the bed.
‘The moneys going to go just like that, it’s intolerable…’
Alginald Carterhouse climbed into the 4×4, and as he did so a wave of hatred passed through her being. She despised his blue shirt. She recalled him wearing his rugby shirt, with the collars up, the previous weekend, and how tedious she thought him, how she wondered at his lack of imagination; how he could be ‘fooled by his own propaganda’ as the saying went. A feeling of insufferable abject gloom went over her as she entered the kitchen.
‘Well I mean… we’ve been in worse scrapes before,’ Minerva inwardly reflected that she despised him anyway
Alginald, in his turn, as he trundled along over the innocent heads of fauna and fauna in his 6×6, reflected, a feeling of insufferable anxiety in his chest: ‘How could he ever have loved her?’ She had only ever wanted him for his money. What a waste, so many years wasted. Now he was fattened like any of those poor Geese gone into making his four gras. He felt like plunging himself into the filthy Thames, felt an urge to drive his 4×4 madly through the fields. He balked, he wanted to vomit uproariously. The scene around him became a blur as he hammered on at increasing speed, the poor fauna hurtling over the windscreen, now like blobs of brown, or detritus. The whole scene ahead was rattling, everything in the car shaking: it was as his own life a crash course for a gratification consigned to the past.
And at that time the telephone had rung, with that frightful idiot-cubed, Gibbons, and stammeringly, he had announced the results of the deal, she had known exactly what this meant.
She dashed the omelette on the floor, the Laura Ashley plate shattering absolutely – and spreading to the four corners. She wished to rend her hair from her scalp.
But additional woes were to be visited upon them this nasty and reprehensible evening.
And that very evening, in an access of hot and cold sticky sweats, Alginald Carterhouse burst through the door of his detached house in wwwwwwcccccc000000. Here he found Minerva, his childhood love, in the throes of passion with a gentleman of low social station, you could say, ‘socially challenged‘.
‘What the blue rinsed hell??’ His wife was on all fours with a lithe gentleman in a checkered shirt having his way with her.
‘Why’, he exclaimed, ‘I’ve given you so much’. I released you from the Mire of a middle class family restricted to W5, I take you to soirees at the Athenaeum, and now this is the gratitude I have? He brought out his laced handkerchief to dab his dew-bedecked brow.
She remembered how his mummy had once bought him a motor-bike, and how she had loved him for his designer stubble – but no, it was clear to her now, it wasn’t masculine at all, he was just a perfumed fop. Her innards turned uncomfortably as she clutched the dresser. What had she been thinking of? How had she been fooled? This was not a man. This was a personage of privilege, who for some reason of astounding stupidity had assigned to himself personal qualities which had nothing to do with personal merit. Vomit descended in multitudinous multitudes.
But her youth was gone, and she’d allowed this pot-bellied, rosy-cheeked, imbecile to slobber all over her, all these years. This was it.
And he in his turn reflected:
‘My accursed lot,’ he wailed, and floating before him came all those passed up opportunities.
‘I tell you’ he uttered, ‘all we do is go to our Tantrica workshop, to reassess our relationship.’
She advanced towards him with her nails drawn: ‘no you fucking idiot, we don’t have the money, don’t you see?’ she left eight lurid streaks on his luckless cheeks, extending in lines from the top of his forhead to the bottom of his jaw.’ It costs money, those workshops, that’s it, we can’t go, fucking idiot…’
He would have to join a dating website.
Each independently began to look through catalogues of modest accommodation in Dagenham.