I know, I have taken a lot of time with this instalment. The story is there, but I just haven't had time to post...or something. Anyway, I have put in a picture to cheer you up, completely unconnected to the story, but does anyone care?
'If I can help you, of course,' Tom said, wondering what Amanda had in mind.
'That would be a blast.'
'What club is this?'
'Oh, it's kind of new, you've probably never heard of it. We are only five members, yet. It's called The Society for the Study of Geographical Maps.'
'Kind of,' she said, and smiled in a way that made Tom curious. 'We even have a small place in the Dungeon, and we meet on Tuesdays. Please come on our next meeting.'
The Dungeon was the student's name for the basement. The school had an extensive basement, with cellars for wine and archives, and all sorts of storage. There were also a number of rooms that were used for clubs and societies that had no permanent place to reside.
'If you want me to,' Tom said, feeling quite stupid, a little vexed, believing he had been tricked into something he had no desire to do.
'You won't regret it,' Amanda said with that smile on her face that seemed to suggest that she had something in mind. 'Thank you, thank you, you are such a biscuit.'
'Girl language,' she said and giggled.
She put her arms around him, kissed him on his cheek. Then she stopped, seemed to hesitate, only to plant a kiss on his lips. She withdrew, blushing. When he turned to her, she stood up.
'Thank you, again. See you in Tuesday.'
She dashed off.
The next day was Friday, and as Tom was walking across the quad in the sunshine, just after lunch, Stephanie caught up with him.
'You are free now,' she said. It wasn't a question, it was a statement.
'Yes, until two.'
'Yes. We have a whole hour we can do whatever we want with.'
'Whatever we want?'
'Yes. You are in the Club now, aren't you?'
'Yes,' Tom replied, hesitating.
'It means you have access to the key to the Tower, right?'
'Yes, I suppose.'
'Get it, and meet me outside the door.'
She rushed away.
The Tower was really a tower, and it stood at the corner of the Annexe, the building where the Mushy Peas Club had their rooms. It was locked but with the key you could go there and take someone with you, someone you wanted to spend sometime alone with.
Tom got the key, and found Stephanie at the door. The key was heavy and big and made Tom think of medieval times. The Tower wasn't that old, but built to make you believe it could be from the Middle Ages.
Inside he locked the door behind them and they both climbed the winding stair to the top. They passed some doors leading to chambers on the way, but they headed for the topmost room.
It was circular, and had windows in all directions. The floor was made of grey flagstones, in the same colour as the stone walls. The chamber looked ancient, but was well kept and clean. A dinner table with six high backed wooden chairs stood to the side, and beside one window could be found a sofa, two armchairs, and a low table.