Nancy glanced across the staff room at the young woman laughing with a group of others. She looked so young, what was she-22? Too young Nancy chided herself, far too young. She sighed and went back to her newspaper.
Peggy had seen where Nancy’s gaze had been, had seen the slight slump of the shoulders, heard the sigh and raised her eyebrows thoughtfully. Nancy looked dejected, unlike her usual cheerful self.
Kathie, the subject of Nancy’s look, came across and sat next to Peggy with a sigh of relief. “It’s good to sit down. “she laughed “I’m exhausted.”
“Your first term is like that, “Peggy agreed “but it does get better, honestly.”
“I’ll believe you. Kathie chuckled.
Peggy had seen Nancy watching Kathie over the top of the newspaper. “Can I get you a coffee? “she asked Kathie.
“I’m the staff baby, am I not supposed to get you one? “Kathie grinned.
“Certainly not. “Peggy rose “Nancy, coffee?”
Nancy looked blankly at her then startled “Sorry, miles away, what?”
“Would you like a coffee?”
“Err, yes, yes thank you.”
“Let me help. “Kathie jumped up.
“Sit “Peggy laughed, “I know from experience you need to grab all the rest you can.”
Kathie subsided back into her chair” Nancy, thank you for helping me earlier, I was very confused about that lesson plan. “with a smile.
“No problem, as your Head of Department that’s what I’m here for. “Nancy managed a smile.
“Yes, but it was on your break so I did appreciate it. Bless you Peggy. “as she was handed a cup.
“Thanks .“Nancy accepted hers.
“So how’s it going Kathie?” Peggy asked sitting down.
“Ok I hope, Nancy has been a great help.”
“I’m sure she has. “Peggy smiled “Our Nancy is a nice lady.”
“And my head of dept” laughed Kathie “so I’d better agree.”
“Is that all she sees me as? “Nancy though with a slight stab of pain although she managed a smile.
Peggy noticed” We’ve all been there Kathie, don’t be afraid to ask for help.”
“I agree, I know I did. “Nancy said.
“Thank you both. Kathie gave a happy smile and Nancy’s heart turned over.
“She’s too young “she thought fiercely “and probably isn’t like you anyway.” Shortly she excused herself and went to her room. She was surprised when someone knocked and she found Peggy standing there.
“Can I come in?” Nancy opened the door for her. “Are you alright?”
“Yes, why shouldn’t I be? “Nancy asked guardedly.
“Kathie.” Peggy said simply. “Am I right?”
Nancy went pale and sat on her bed “How, how did you know?”
“I know you Nancy “Peggy sat beside her “you’ve let things slip, don’t worry, I do understand.”
Nancy stared at the floor.” thanks “she whispered.
“Am I right?”
“She’s a pretty girl.”
“She is just a girl, I’m over 10 years older, and there’s nothing to say she’s like me anyway. “Nancy burst out.
“But she might be “Peggy said gently. “Nancy, be patient, she’s only been here three weeks, wait and see, be her friend.”
“I want to be her friend. “Nancy admitted “but…..”
“You want a little more “Peggy hugged her friend.
“Yes “whispered Nancy.
The trips for half term were announced and Nancy found she was with Peggy and Kathie. “As it’s Kathie’s first time “Hilda had said “I thought I would put her with two old hands.”
“You are very welcome Kathie.” Peggy smiled, Nancy murmured her agreement.
Kathie looked delighted, she liked Peggy and wanted to get to know Nancy better, she seemed a little shy.
Peggy looked sympathetically at Nancy later “You going to be ok?”
“I’ll have to be, I can hardly go to Hilda and say ‘I can’t go, I’ve fallen in love with Kathie’."
“Yes, yes I think I have. “muttered Nancy “What do I do. This is the first time in years that I have felt like this, that I’ve allowed myself to feel like this.”
“Was there someone before?” gently.
“Yes, she, she died. “Peggy gently hugged her friend “And I’ve never allowed myself to feel-until now.”
“And now you are head over heels.”
“Yes”softly”yes I am.”