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You Are Cordially Invited – the Aftermath

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Emily Bennett
Hey everyone, I just thought I'd take the moment to thank everyone for coming on Saturday. I thought it all went rather well. Thanks to Mike and Helen for the second bbq. Definitely came in handy! Also, if you brought food, can you check you've taken home all your dishes. I appear to have a few here that aren't mine.

Claire Gooding
So what did everyone think about our new neighbours?"

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: Did anyone else find them to be completely what you were expecting but at the same time definitely not what you were expecting?

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: And does anyone have any idea how sunglasses dude even walks like that?

Hayley Albright
Claire Gooding: I thought they were quite lovely.

Anna Maddocks
Hayley Albright: I thought they were definitely quite something.

Anna Maddocks
Anna Maddocks: Especially that walk. ;)

Amanda Hargreaves
Anna Maddocks: Joshua was certainly rather taken with them. Especially Mr. Fell.

Hayley Albright
Amanda Hargreaves: Yes, I saw them talking a couple of times. I thought Joshua didn't like strangers.

Amanda Hargreaves
Hayley Albright: He doesn't usually.

Claire Gooding
Did anyone else hear that Crowley used to be a nanny?

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: What? Really?

Claire Gooding:
Anna Maddocks: Yup. A live-in nanny as well. Big house. Rich. Lots of staff.

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: A nanny?

Claire Gooding:
Anna Maddocks: For someone important from what it sounded like. A politician or ambassador or something.

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: Him though? A nanny?

Claire Gooding
Anna Maddocks: Careful. That sounds a little, you know, phobic?

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: Oh no! Nononoonononoonono. Nothing like that. It's just he didn't exactly strike me as the sort of person you would leave a kid with.

Claire Gooding
Anna Maddocks: ?????

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: God no! Nothing like that!

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: And not the gay thing either!

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: It’s just, when you talk to him, he's got the most delightfully wicked sense of humour. I actually overheard him telling some of the older kids that he had a hand in inventing Instagram, Candy Crush and the selfie stick.

Hayley Albright
Anna Maddocks: Do we know for certain that he didn't?

Anna Maddocks
Hayley Albright: I thought he was hilarious, but he struck me as a bit of a trickster type.

Anna Maddocks
Hayley Albright: Leave my two with him and I’d expect to come back to flour across the floor, or glitter everywhere, or paint across the walls.

Anna Maddocks:
Hayley Albright: Are we sure the nanny thing wasn’t some sort of a joke?

Hayley Albright:
Anna Maddocks: I suppose he might have been joking. Did he mention anything to anyone else about what he does?

Pete Kowalski
Hayley Albright: I got the impression he was in finance or something. Michael Porter what did he tell you?

Michael Porter
Pete Kowalski: Stocks and stuff he told me.

Rebecca Oliver
Michael Porter: He told Roger he made his money in imports and exports.

Sandra Day
Rebecca Oliver: He told me he did ‘oh just this and that’. I got the impression there was a certain amount of old family money there though.

Claire Gooding
Sandra Day: Speaking of family, did anyone else get the idea they were uncomfortable talking about their past and families?

Hayley Albright
Claire Gooding: I certainly got the impression they were estranged from their families.

Anna Maddocks
Hayley Albright: Not happy about some of their “lifestyle choices” is what I gathered.

Sandra Day
Anna Maddocks: Could be the whole "relationship" thing. I got the sense their families might be particularly religious. Especially Mr. Fell’s.

Hayley Albright
Sandra Day: I was certainly getting a bit of a Romeo and Juliet vibe going on.

Claire Gooding
Hayley Albright: Two households, both alike in dignity, on the streets of London were we lay out scene.... And all that.

Sandra Day
Claire Gooding: Perhaps not that far. :)

J.P. Wright
I for one thought they were straight up smashing chaps. Cannot say I approve of sunglasses and what passes for modern fashion these days, but as young men go they seemed to know their stuff, and if their families have turned them out for being homosexual, then shame on them.

Hayley Albright
J.P. Wright: I don't think Mr Crowley is as young as you might think he is.

Claire Gooding
Hayley Albright: Not as much of the toy boy as we might have thought.

Sandra Day
Claire Gooding: My Gemma referred to him as being a bit of a grown up "twink", whatever that is.

Hayley Albright
Sandra Day: Should I even ask?

Claire Gooding
Hayley Albright: Probably best not.

Sandra Day
Claire Gooding: My Gemma also found him hilarious. In a good way. She said if he wasn't so obviously taken she would have tried setting him up with a couple of her uni mates.

Anna Maddocks
Sandra Day: They seem quite the odd couple though, right?

Anna Maddocks
Sandra Day: I mean, they're obviously crazy about each other, I mean, really, really crazy, but they're like polar opposites. One is all politeness and sweet smiles, the other sharp and obviously a bit of a rebel.

Emily Bennett
Anna Maddocks: Opposites do attract.

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: Ah, welcome back!

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: :) :) :)

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: We were just summing up what we found out about our new neighbours.

Hayley Albright
Claire Gooding: Gossiping. We were gossiping.

Claire Gooding
Hayley Albright: Yeah, that too.

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: Currently we’re trying to figure out what a certain sunglasses wearing, Bentley driving, not-quite-a-toy-boy does for a living.

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: Dave thought it might be something to do with computers. Or business management.

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: Computers. Business. Finance. Stocks. Imports/exports. This and that. Inventing stuff like selfie sticks. And being a nanny.

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: Anyone getting the impression he was messing with us?

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: Now you mention it.

Claire Gooding
Anna Maddocks: Well at least his partner was considerably straighter on the subject.

Claire Gooding
Anna Maddocks: Pun totally intended, btw!

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: (disapproving face)

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: And this is me groaning!

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: Use to own a bookshop.

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: At least, that’s what he told me.

Hayley Albright
Emily Bennett: And me.

Sandra Day
Hayley Albright: And me.

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: Well that’s pretty conclusive.

Sandra Day
Claire Gooding: My Gemma’s asking if any of us have actually googled his bookshop.

Hayley Albright
Sandra Day: Is that something we should have done?

Anna Maddocks
Sandra Day: Do we know what it was called?

Sandra Day
Anna Maddocks: My Gemma said she googled him and found the shop.

Claire Gooding
Sandra Day: Did Gemma say what the shop was called?

Sandra Day
Claire Gooding: Wait, I’ll ask her.

Sandra Day
Claire Gooding: A Z Fell and Co apparently.

Anna Maddocks
Sandra Day: Well that certainly sounds like the right place.

Hayley Albright
Sandra Day: Anything interesting?

Sandra Day
Hayley Albright: Gemma seemed to think so. Something about Yelp reviews.

Sandra Day
Hayley Albright: I’ll ask again.

Claire Gooding
Sandra Day: Hold on, I’m googling it.

Claire Gooding
Sandra Day: OMG!

Hayley Albright
Claire Gooding: What?

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: Have you found something?

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: OMG!!!????!?!?!?!?

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: ???????

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: OMG! These are HILARIOUS!

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: Google it!

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: Google it now!

Michael Porter
Claire Gooding: Helen wants to know what exactly we’re supposed to be googling.

Claire Gooding
Michael Porter: Tell Helen to google “A Z Fell and Co Yelp Reviews”

Amanda Hargreaves
Claire Gooding: Should we really be prying like this?

J.P. Wright
Amanda Hargreaves: I quite agree! This is very poor form. These are our new neighbours and we should not be searching for them on the interwebs.

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: OMG! I’ve found it.

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: OMG, this is just so brilliant.

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: “Five stars for the books. One star if you actually want to buy any of them! Watch out for the snake.”

Anna Maddocks
Anna Maddocks: “Fell knows everything about every book; just don’t ask to buy any of his. Swear I’ve never been ushered out of a shop as quickly as when I asked about the price of one of the first editions Wildes.”

Anna Maddocks
Anna Maddocks: “What the hell are the opening hours? ‘I open the shop on most weekdays about 9:30 AM. Perhaps 10AM. While occasionally I open the shop as early as 8, I have been known not to open until 1. Expect on Tuesday, I tend to close about 3:30 PM, or earlier if something needs tending to…’ This is insane! How the hell does Fell expect to actually sell anything if no one knows if he’s even open or not? The only reason I care is because I hear he’s got a limited edition I’ve been after for a while now, but every time I go he’s closed or closing. Closing at 11:15 in the morning? What the hell? I barely even had the chance to ask about the book before I was being shoved out the door.”

Hayley Albright
Anna Maddocks: Are we sure this is the right place?

Hayley Albright
Hayley Albright: Our Mr Fell didn’t strike me as rude.

Sandra Day
Hayley Albright: I thought him rather a dear.

Anna Maddocks
Hayley Albright: Oh this is definitely them. Listen to this:

Anna Maddocks
Anna Maddocks: “Anyone know if the old Bentley parked out front is for sale?”

Anna Maddocks
Anna Maddocks: “Update: It’s really, really, really not!”

Anna Maddocks
Anna Maddocks: Also:

Anna Maddocks
Anna Maddocks: “Caught the owner snogging some hot twink behind the cookbooks. Well done, my dude.”

Anna Maddocks
Anna Maddocks: Oh yes, this is definitely them!

Hayley Albright
Anna Maddocks: Goodness!

Claire Gooding
Anna Maddocks: You get to the one about “Fell’s sunglasses wearing boyfriend” throwing out the “Grumpy Dude” who referred to Fell as a fairy?

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: “None of us have wings. Out!”

Anna Maddocks
Anna Maddocks: Oh god, these are absolutely brilliant!

Claire Gooding
Anna Maddocks: Doesn’t sound like he was selling many books though.

Hayley Albright
Anna Maddocks: What sort of a bookshop owner doesn’t sell books?

Sandra Day
Anna Maddocks: And he comes across as such a lovely man.

Claire Gooding
Sandra Day: Absolutely wonderful… until you try to buy one of his books! :)

Sandra Day
Claire Gooding: And he was so complimentary about my apple tart too!

Claire Gooding
Sandra Day: Not as complimentary as he was about Hayley Albright’s cheesecake though. ;)

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: Oh man did he like your cheesecake Hayley.

Claire Gooding
Anna Maddocks: I thought he was going to melt there and then.

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: As good as or even better than anything he’s had at the Ritz or the Savoy, he said.

Sandra Day
Anna Maddocks: High praise indeed, and most deservedly so.

Claire Gooding
Hayley Albright: Have you recovered yet, Hayley?

Hayley Albright
Claire Gooding: Getting there.

Hayley Albright
Hayley Albright: To be honest, I wasn’t too sure what to think.

Michael Porter
Hayley Albright: Helen says it’s most deserved and he’s clearly a man used to fine dining, so take it as a compliment.

Michael Porter
Michael Porter: Also Helen says she googled the bottle of wine he brought and you do not want to know how much it cost.

Claire Gooding
Michael Porter: What? Really?

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: You can’t just say such a thing and then stop there. We need more!

Michael Porter
Claire Gooding: Ok, ok, let me just check with Helen.

Anna Maddocks
Michael Porter: It was really nice wine. Was thinking of seeing if I could get a bottle, for Christmas or something.

Michael Porter
Anna Maddocks: You might want to start saving now then.

Michael Porter
Michael Porter: Apparently it’s a limited edition and bottles now go for up to six hundred pounds.

Claire Gooding
Michael Porter: ?!?!?!?

Anna Maddocks
Michael Porter: And that’s now right off my Christmas list again.

Claire Gooding
Michael Porter: SIX HUNDRED POUNDS?!?!?!?!?!!!///

Anna Maddocks
Michael Porter: It was a lovely glass.

Michael Porter
Anna Maddocks: I wouldn’t know. I stuck to the rum the Crowley chap brought.

Anna Maddocks
Michael Porter: Now we know why they got specially fitted wine racks.

Anna Maddocks
Michael Porter: Do you think they might have any other bottles just, you know, knocking around?

Anna Maddocks
Michael Porter: We could try and barter for one in exchange for another of Hayley Albright’s cheesecakes.

Claire Gooding
Anna Maddocks: He really did like your cheesecake, Hayley Albright.

Pete Kowalski
Did we ever figure out what the Crowley chap does?

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: No, we sort of gave up on that.

Anna Maddocks
Pete Kowalski: He told everyone different things.

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: His partner used to run a bookshop though.

Anna Maddocks
Claire Gooding: Yeah, but one that didn’t sell any books though.

Pete Kowalski
Claire Gooding: Ok.

Pete Kowalski
Ok. Can I just point something out here then?

Claire Gooding:
Pete Kowalski: Sure Pete.

Pete Kowalski
Actually, let me do a summary first.

Pete Kowalski
So what we know is that the Fell chap used to run a bookshop in central London where it appears that he never sold any books.

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: Yup.

Pete Kowalski
Pete Kowalski: He and his Bentley driving, sunglasses wearing partner knew each other for years but kept quiet about it because their "families" wouldn't approve.

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: Yup.

Pete Kowalski
Pete Kowalski: These are the same families they are now "estranged" from.

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: Yup.

Pete Kowalski
Pete Kowalski: We have no idea what his partner used to do because he told us lots of different things, but we know they have money and probably connections. The Ritz. The Savoy. £600 for a limited bottle of wine, for instance.

Pete Kowalski
Oh and by the way, that Bentley, it’s an original, not a reproduction.

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: What? Really?

Pete Kowalski
Claire Gooding: Yes, I checked. After the Crowley chap claimed it was, I text my mate Steve about it. He’s a car buff. And he’s come back confirming it. Original and everything!

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: Golly!

Pete Kowalski
So anyway, they obviously have money. And taste. And a past they're not really talking about.

Pete Kowalski
Just to throw it out here, and it might be completely wild, but-

Pete Kowalski
Is it possible… they were in the mafia?

Anna Maddocks
Pete Kowalski: WHAT???!?!?!?!?!?!?!?

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: OMG!

Hayley Albright
Pete Kowalski: ????????

J.P. Wright
Pete Kowalski: Really! Peter!

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: OmG oMG OMG!!!!!!

Amanda Hargreaves
Pete Kowalski: Oh no!

Sandra Day
Pete Kowalski: My Gemma says you might be right.

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: OMG YOU MIGHT BE RIGHT??!?!?!?!/1

Anna Maddocks
Pete Kowalski: ?!?!?!??!?!?!?!?!?!?

Pete Kowalski
Pete Kowalski: I’m just throwing it out there.

Pete Kowalski
Pete Kowalski: I’m not saying I’m right.

Claire Gooding
Pete Kowalski: It does make a scary amount of sense though!

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: Claire! Don’t be ridiculous.

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: What? But it does!

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: A bookshop that doesn’t sell books would be the perfect front.

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: A guy with a dodgy working history!

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: A classic car!

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: Families they are estranged from!

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: Families!!!

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: Mafia families!

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: Neither of them are in the mafia!

Amanda Hargreaves
Emily Bennett: And Joshua was so taken with them.

Sandra Day
Emily Bennett: Such lovely people.

Pete Kowalski
Emily Bennett: Like I said, just throwing it out there.

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: OMG! They were on rival sides!

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: That’s why their families disapproved of their relationship.

Emily Bennett
For god’s sake people! They were not in the mafia!

Hayley Albright
Emily Bennett: They might have been though.

Michael Porter
Emily Bennett: Pete might have a point.

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: Imaging what they might have been running out of the bookshop.

Pete Kowalski
Emily Bennett: It was just a thought.

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: Drugs.

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: Guns.

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: Enough!

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: Drugs and guns!

Hayley Albright
Emily Bennett: Counterfeit goods?

Emily Bennett
Claire Gooding: This is not helping!

Claire Gooding
Emily Bennett: It might have been one of their bases of operations!

Claire Gooding
Claire Gooding: What if they find out that we know!!!!!!!

Sandra Day
Pete Kowalski: What would Mrs Hazleton say?

Emily Bennett has turned off comments for this post.