Part 4 Clarity of Purpose
Max was on the floor early the next morning and caught one of the traders he’d heard the day before, “Did you say Amis yesterday?”
“Oh yeah,” he chuckled, “ran into him last night at the pub, he wanted to know who was leading the floor over here now, I said wouldn’t you like to know, ha ha.”
“I’m sure he would, let’s don’t tell him.” Max smiled.
“Do you know him?”
“I went to school with the bastard.”
“Ah, ha, ha, ha,” the man moved on down to this station.
Max was on top of his game, now that he knew what particular species of shark he was dealing with he enjoyed himself. He was also making a bundle of money for John, and despite the pull and the rush he got from what he was doing that was the sole purpose of his being on the floor and he didn’t forget it. When the trading day was over he left the building quickly.
He drove out to Battersea to pick up Connie, who had spent the day shopping with Toni. He was let in by the nanny, Toni and Connie were downstairs in the kitchen.
Connie was explaining to Toni how they were invisioning their new kitchen, “Well you know that warren of rooms, we’re going to take two of them and the existing kitchen, it should end up about the size of yours, I want it to be a gathering place, like this.”
“We don’t gather down here all the time, but I know what you mean.”
Connie spotted him coming down the steps,”Max!”
“Hello, ladies and I use that term loosely, “ He kissed them both.
“Are you inferring that we’re loose women?” Toni asked.
“Gosh I hope not. Did you tell her?” he asked Connie.
“Yes, I did, and she wants to know where and when and can she do something.”
“I am so happy about this, Max,” Toni beamed.
Max cocked a brow at her, “I wonder why?”
Toni winked at him and went over to the wine cooler, “I think this calls for a toast, Max will you do the honors?” she handed him the bottle and a corkscrew.
“I suppose we’ll need to go to the registrars office together.” He looked up at Connie while corkscrewing.
“I suppose we will, I’d like Toni and Terry to be our witnesses, so we’ll have to wait until Terry gets back.”
“He’ll be back Sunday night.” Toni said setting the wine goblets out. “A civil ceremony then?”
“As long as it’s legal,” Max poured out the wine.
“I can’t wait to tell him, he’s supposed to call me tonight, he will be so pleased.”
“I’m sure he will,” Max chuckled.
“Let me say this as a toast to you, here’s to happines and love, it’s what we all strive for, what we need and what I hope for the two of you.”
“Thank you, Toni,” Connie sipped her wine.
“You’ve taught me well, Toni, I think I know what is necessary for a good life, you gave me the blueprint now it’s up to me to make it happen.”
“Max is going deep,” Toni met his eyes and smiled.
“He’s adorable isn’t he?” Connie said smiling at Max.
“Yes, he is. Well, what shall we do tonight, surely something special? I’ve got Anna to look after Jacky.”
“You know what I would like to do, and I know this is crazy, but I’d like to ride on the London Eye.” Connie raised her brows looking from one to the other.
“Love it,” Toni said and laughed.
“Of all the places we could go and things we could do…” Max was out-voted.
They were near the top in the gondola when Toni got her phone call.
“Terry darling, I have the best news.”
“Where are you, the reception is terrible?”
“I’m on the London Eye almost to the top, guess what? Max and Connie are getting married.”
“What are you doing on the Eye, bloody hell, Toni.”
“I’m with Max and Connie, did you hear me?”
“Max and Connie are with you?”
“Yes, they’re getting married!” Everybody in the gondola turned and laughed, Toni thought louder made it clearer.
“Max is getting married? Well that’s great, Toni.”
“I’ll tell you all about it when you get home, oh and Jacky took a step all by himself, you just need to get home love, there’s too much happening.”
“Sunday, honey I’ll see you on Sunday, I love you.”
“I love you too.” The Eye reached the top and stopped a moment Toni was wishing Terry was with her to see this. She felt Max’s arm slide around her and pull her over with him and Connie. “It’s beautiful, Max, all lit up like this.”
Max looked down on the city and realized he did love it, maybe not the way he felt about La Siroque, but London was in his blood, the hustle and bustle of the city fueled him so that he could coast when he went home to the chateau. He had three more days to work and then he was done for awhile. Awhile? He smiled to himself, once in awhile just to keep his hand in, keep Amis on his toes, to keep from getting rusty himself.
It occurred to him it was near the Christmas holidays, he wondered if Connie might spend Christmas in London, they hadn’t a kitchen and there were his nephews and niece to buy gifts for. He thought he’d ask her after they were married. Married, he could hardly believe it. He looked town at the top of Toni’s head and knew she’d somehow engineered this, but he was okay with that, she knew what he needed and so did he. He gave Connie a squeeze and placed a kiss on the top of her head.
“If we ever touch solid ground again you two owe me a drink.”
“You’ve got two coming,” Toni answered. “Terry couldn’t believe where I was.”
“I don’t believe where you are.”
“Um hm?” Max leaned down to Toni.
“You’re about the best brother in law a girl could ever hope for.”
“We’re thinking like that are we?”
“I think so, we have to don’t we?”
“Um,” he ran his hand up her back, “don’t be so sure of that.”
“Yes, darling,” he bent down to Connie.
“I was thinking since the chateau is torn apart…”
“Well you know, there will be workmen in and out, we hope, anyway I thought if it was okay with you we might stay until after the holidays?” she looked up at him.
Max smiled, “If you’d like to, darling, I think we can do that.”
Life was good.
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