Do you remember that summer, baby? Summer 2011? The summer we fell in love.
I was 18, you were 24.
I was working as a tequila girl, and P was working for you at that time.
You came in after work one day, and I was sitting with Daddy in our usual corner.
You: Who is that?
P: That’s C’s daughter.
You: Wow. I’m definitely gonna shag her.
P: No chance mate, she’s got a boyfriend and she’s not like that.
You: I’m gonna make her mine. Just watch me.
P: £20 says you haven’t got a hope in hell.
Two weeks later.
You: Mate, you owe me £20.
You plied me and my friends with drinks and shots.
You would send food over to my table.
You sent your 4 year old nephew over to me.
Little P: Helenaaaaaa?
Me: Yes bubs?
Little P: My uncle R says can you write your phone number down on this tissue
Me: Tell your uncle R that Helena says no!
Little P: HAHAHAHA okay *runs off*
I broke up with D, citing artistic differences.
I went to Corfu.
I shagged a guy with the same name as you.
I went to Cornwall.
We spoke all week.
“You will be so safe with me angel, you wouldn’t believe.”
I returned the day of the Tottenham riots.
We didn’t meet in the pub.
We met outside the supermarket, round the corner.
I jumped on you and you gave me the biggest cuddle.
We sat on a bench and I told you all about Cornwall.
Then we saw the guy who tried to rape me.
“Do you want me to kill him?”
Upon my return, you were determined.
Everyone saw it happen, in front of their very eyes.
Big mistake, Helena, you’re making a massive mistake.
He’s trouble, that one. Stay away from him.
He’s just going to use you.
He’s only after one thing. Keep your legs shut, whatever you do.
You’re just gonna be another notch on his bedpost, girl.
Everyone warned me off you. Especially Daddy. He was furious to say the least.
You: *puts beer in front of Daddy* *sits at other end of table*
Daddy: Oh, cheers R. Thanks mate.
You: No problem.
Over the space of half an hour, R slowly shifted himself along the table so that he was getting closer and closer to Daddy, who was trying to read his book in the sunshine, in peace and quiet.
Daddy: Can I help you R? Is there something you want?
You: Yes sir. Erm. Do you have any objection to me taking your daughter out for dinner?
Daddy: *sigh* I have no objection but I have a problem. The problem is that you remind me of myself when I was 24. I know what men are like because I am one of them. And that’s worrying, because you’re a man and she’s my baby. But she’s 18, she can make her own decisions and her own mistakes. If she wants to go out with you, then that’s fine by me. But you lay a finger on her and I will fucking kill you. Is that clear?
You: Crystal. Thanks sir. Have a nice day sir. *runs away*
We went to the Green Dragon.
I didn’t eat because I was embarrassed to eat in front of you.
We had two pints of Peroni and watched the riots on the news.
You had chicken caeser salad.
You had apple crumble and custard.
You kissed me in the car park.
I stayed at yours for the first time, one evening, a few days later.
Daddy: What did you do last night?
Me: Oh just stayed at T’s house..
Daddy: Don’t lie to me, I saw you get in R’s van and drive off into the sunset.
Me: I’m sorry Daddy.
Daddy: Just…. be fucking careful, please princess.
Me: I will, I promise.
A-Level results day came.
I got to the pub at 11am.
At around 4pm, a bottle of champagne was sent over to me.
“Who is this from?”
It was from you and P.
“I could get used to this,” I thought to myself.
We spent the rest of the summer in that very same pub garden.
But because Daddy knew, and gave his blessing (sort of) we were allowed to be together in public.
Everyone frowned upon it.
But we were happy.
We were so happy.
Everything was perfect.
We went to Southend-On-Sea.
We went to the park.
We went for walks.
We went for dinners.
We went for drinks.
We stayed in bed for 3 days straight, watching Prison Break.
I met your family.
You met my family.
We were so happy.
But then I had to move to university.
I expected everything to fall apart.
“It was only summer love.”
But I was wrong.
I’d been at university for 2 days when you showed up at my door.
“I have to drive down, I missed you too much.”
“Are you happy to do this for the next 3 years?” I joked, nervously.
Two weeks into university, you flew to New York, to watch D’s big fight in Atlantic City.
“Just in case my plane crashes, I want to tell you that I love you.”
What? He loves me?
I replied, “I love you too.”
And there’s no stopping us right now
I feel so close to you right now
And so, as our tans faded, our love grew.
The leaves turned brown as you planned to propose to me.
The sky turned darker, earlier, and we held each other through bitter winter nights.
As the nights drew in, the wedding plans got more serious.
We celebrated your 25th, your 26th, your 27th.
We spoke a lot about baby plans. All you wanted from me was a child. I told you to hang on, just wait until after I’ve finished university. If everything had gone according to plan, we would begin trying for a baby next month, just as I turn 21.
But things fell apart.
And you broke my heart.
Just like they all said you would.
One thing from that summer will always stick with me.
You knew everyone was badmouthing you and warning me off you.
You said, “Helena, please don’t listen to them, I’m not like that I promise.”
I believed you. I didn’t listen to them. I followed my heart. My heart is You.
But, P said to me, “Listen, you know I love you to bits, and I’ll do anything for you, but R is like a brother to me. If you break his heart, I will make your life a living hell, and you will wish that you never met me.”
I was terrified, naturally, because I had a bit of a reputation as a heartbreaker, especially since breaking up with D.
And as much as I love P, I am shitscared of him.
I think I laughed it off, and said something like “Of course not babe!”
But it is You who has broken My heart.
And Daddy hasn’t killed You yet.