Someone he knew?” “Yeah. Could be strategy. Maybe he fancies you.” “Fancies me? But he’s old.” “Only old enough to be your father.” I grabbed my tray and left the table. I didn’t do much work that afternoon. I kept wishing Mark hadn’t said what he had said. Old enough to be your father. The following week I took along a book to read during lunchtime. When I got into the lift on my floor, he was already inside. He greeted me so I had to reply but I didn’t smile. We were alone and that worried me. I wondered whether I should get out at the next floor and walk up the stairs to the canteen. Don’t panic, I thought. Just because he’s stared at you for ages doesn’t mean he’s going to do anything. ” Well, I suppose one of us should press the button or we’ll be here all day, won’t we?” I’d been so busy wondering what he was going to do and expecting him to do something, that I’d completely forgotten to do anything myself. I felt like an idiot and this made me smile and I hadn’t wanted to. He smiled back, his blue eyes crinkling right up to the grey hair at his ears and making him look … nice. Then there was a slap. My book hit the floor. I bent down and so did he, and we bashed heads. At that moment, the lift shuddered to a stop and the doors seemed to fling themselves wide open. I was so embarrassed, I marched out of the lift, straight towards the queue at the counter. I ordered without looking at the menu and took my tray to a table where there was only one empty seat. I breathed a sigh of relief and began to eat. But the salad stuck in my throat when I noticed that everyone else at the table had already finished lunch and they were getting up to go. I glanced over at the counter. He was paying and in a second, his eyes would scan the room to find me. I ducked my head. Waited. Any minute now he’d sit down with his tray. Short Stories from Australasia. My book appeared in front of my eyes. His fingers were the longest I’d seen and his nails were manicured. I hadn’t thought he’d bother.