Richard’s stomach was alive with a thousand tiny dancing monkeys, his skin was performing the fastest Mexican wave along his bones and he was trying to control his breathing by the time the miniature barista lady had toddled up to the counter.
‘Yes, love?’ She asked him curtly.
‘Two still waters, please,’ he replied, very aware that his mouth was drying up. He turned his head quickly to check that Misha was still sitting at his table. He was practically giddy to see that she was.
‘Do you want them to run deep?’ The barista, who was wearing a slightly askew tag with the name “Clara” typed across it, asked with a ridiculous grin on her face.
‘Sorry?’ Richard asked with a frown, turning back.
‘You know from that song about still waters running deep an’ that.’
‘Oh, right!’ He replied. ‘I think it was actually not a song but a proverb. Very good though.’
‘Well, when you have to explain it,’ Clara muttered and turned to open the fridge containing the bottles of water and juices. ‘D’you want ice and lemon?’ She asked.
‘Erm, no thanks. Just glasses, please.’
Clara practically dropped the plastic bottles she had fished out of the refrigerator on to the counter before turning to snatch at two glasses.
‘That’ll be £3.50, please.’
‘Wow,’ Richard began with a ridiculous smile of his own, as he fished into his jeans for change. ‘These still waters run deeply into my pockets.’
‘Whatever,’ Clara growled and grabbed for the proffered cash with a dull ‘Thanks.’