1. One Day (Movie Tie-in Edition) by David Nicholls | Books
  2. One Day by David Nicholls
  3. One Day (Movie Tie-in Edition)
  4. Nicholls David. One Day

David Nicholls ONE DAY. DOWNLOAD FULL PDF EBOOK here { https://tinyurl. com/y8nn3gmc }. .. Imagine one selected day struck out of it and think how different its course wouldhave been. Pause, you who read this. DAVID NICHOLLS. One Day. Retold by F H Cornish. MACMILLAN She was silent for a moment, then 'Then I'll go to France for a few weeks and after that. Nicholls David. One Day. Файл формата pdf; размером 1,64 МБ. Добавлен пользователем sieglinde ; Отредактирован

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One Day Nicholls Pdf - Read Online One Day By David Nicholls, One Day By David Nicholls PDF Free Download. Imagine one selected day struck out of it and think how different its course would have been. Pause, you who read this, and think for a long moment of the long. One Day. View PDF. Winner of the Galaxy Book of the Year book | Fiction | UK → Hodder and Stoughton. US → Vintage. 'I can imagine you at forty,'.

Reading Guide. Look Inside Reading Guide. May 24, Pages download. Jun 15, Pages download. Aug 16, Pages download. Jul 15, Minutes download. May 24, Pages. Jun 15, Pages. Aug 16, Pages. Jul 15, Minutes. But after only one day together, they cannot stop thinking about one another. Over twenty years, snapshots of that relationship are revealed on the same day—July 15th—of each year. Dex and Em face squabbles and fights, hopes and missed opportunities, laughter and tears. And as the true meaning of this one crucial day is revealed, they must come to grips with the nature of love and life itself.

What mischief have you been up to? We waited at the restaurant. College disco. Very What was that like? Was it fun? The heat, and his sandals were chafing. I thought it was beautiful, but Stephen was bored out of his skull. All that mess, columns just left lying around all over the place. I think he thinks they should bulldoze it all, put up a nice conservatory or something.

Alison tutted.

One Day (Movie Tie-in Edition) by David Nicholls | Books

You ruined me. Pass the matches. This is my last one. Spill the beans, all the juicy details. No nice Catholic girl? What about that nice girl who came to stay that time? Got drunk and shouted at your father about the Sandinistas. I liked her. Your father liked her too, even if she did call him a bourgeois fascist. Not like those silly sex-pots we usually find at the breakfast table. Yes Mrs Mayhew, no Mrs Mayhew. I can hear you, you know, tip-toeing to the guest room in the night.

In fact I think she likes you. She smiled at him indulgently, and squeezed his hand as it rested on the table. She nudged his arm. She hung woozily on his arm. How much holiday do you need? It seemed that as he ambled through his late teens his possibilities had slowly begun to narrow.

Certain cool- sounding jobs — heart surgeon, architect — were permanently closed to him now and journalism seemed about to go the same way. Of course what he really wanted was to be a photographer. Journalism would mean grappling with difficult stuff like words and ideas, but he thought he might have the makings of a decent photographer, if only because he felt he had a strong sense of when things looked right.

He decided to try saying it out loud. I apologise. Teaching Beatles songs to moony Nordic girls. Besides it gives me something to fall back on.

They walked a little further before he spoke. It would be good if you were prepared for that. It would do you good to be better equipped. A direction. A purpose. Some drive, some ambition. When I was your age I wanted to change the world.

I wanted to talk to you about something else. Through the smoked plate glass window he could glimpse his father hunched in a lobby armchair, one long thin leg bent up to his knee, sock bunched up in his hand as he scrutinised the sole of his foot. A little bit of Swansea on the Via del Corso.

Charming, just charming. While your father sits in a darkened room and picks his corns. White tablecloths. Somewhere expensive, my treat. You can bring me some of your photographs of interesting pebbles. His mother was smiling but frowning too, squeezing his hand a little too hard, and he felt a sudden pang of anxiety. Tell me now!

Can I have your attention? If you could listen? Thank you. Our soup is that repeat offender, the sweetcorn chowder, and the main course is a very delicious and succulent fish burrito!

A small, pale pink-eyed man with a degree in Business Management from Loughborough, he had once hoped to be a captain of industry. He had pictured himself playing golf at conference centres or striding up the steps of a private jet, and yet just this morning he had scooped a plug of yellow pork fat the size of a human head from the kitchen drains.

With his bare hands. He could still feel the grease between his fingers. Who knows, they may even get a prawn or two. The new boy. The staff watched him warily, weighing him up as if he were a new arrival on G-wing. Where does Scott find them? Fish burritos! Now, music please! Twelve times a shift, twenty-four shifts a month, for seven months now. Emma looked down at the baseball cap in her hand. The restaurant logo, a cartoon donkey, peered up at her goggle-eyed from beneath his sombrero, drunk it would seem, or insane perhaps.

She settled the cap on her head and slid off the bar stool as if lowering herself into icy water. The new guy was waiting for her, beaming, his fingertips jammed awkwardly into the pockets of his gleaming white jeans, and Emma wondered once again what exactly she was doing with her life. Emma, Emma, Emma.

How are you, Emma? And what are you doing right this second? This letter comes to you from a downtown Bombay hostel with scary mattresses and hot and cold running Australians. My guide book tells me that it has character i. When will you stop trying to educate me, I wonder? Never I hope. It turns out that being banned from Teaching English as a Foreign Language was the best thing that ever happened to me though I still think they overreacted.

Morally Unfit? Tove was twenty-one. After all I pretended to be interested when you banged on about the Poll Tax Riots. Anyway, I showed some of my photos to this TV producer who I met on a train the other day, a woman not what you think, old, mid-thirties and she said I could be a professional.

Are you doing another play? Send her my love. Are you still in that box room? Does the flat still smell of fried onions? Is Tilly Killick still soaking her big grey bras in the washing-up bowl? Which brings me to my reason for writing to you. Are you ready? You might want to sit down. The official tour had brought them to the small, dank staffroom which overlooked the Kentish Town Road, packed already with students and tourists on their way to Camden Market to download large furry top hats and smiley face t-shirts.

Or work here, come to that. Mucho mucho loco. Management flip if you lose your baseball cap. New boy — still squeamish, thought Emma, watching him.

He had a pleasant, large open face beneath the loose straw-coloured curls, smooth ruddy cheeks and a mouth that hung open in repose. Not exactly handsome, but, well — sturdy. For some reason, not entirely kind, it was a face that made her think of tractors.

Suddenly he met her gaze and she blurted out: Got to pay the rent. Everyone who works here has a stroke. Waiter-stroke-artist, waiter-stroke- actor.

Well, we all like to laugh. What, like a stand-up or something? What about you? What else do you do? I love it! Brace yourself. Here goes. And be aware that I have a lowish 2. Here it is. I think you think that the natural way of things is for your life to be grim and grey and dour and to hate your job, hate where you live, not to have success or money or God forbid a boyfriend and a quick discersion here — that whole self-deprecating thing about being unattractive is getting pretty boring I can tell you.

Failure and unhappiness is easier because you can make a joke out of it. Is this annoying you? I bet it is. Well I think you deserve more. You are smart and funny and kind too kind if you ask me and by far the cleverest person I know.

And am drinking more beer here — deep breath you are also a Very Attractive Woman. It would be the gift of Confidence. Either that or a scented candle. In fact our whole generation is like that. This letter builds to a life-changing climax. Somewhere between the staff toilets and the kitchen, Ian Whitehead slipped into his stand-up act. Loud acid house played on the battered radio cassette as a Somalian, an Algerian and a Brazilian prised the lids off white plastic catering tubs.

Next to this was pinned a large document, ragged at the edges, a parchment map of the Texas—Mexico border.

Emma tapped it with her finger. Fajitas come on these red-hot iron platters. She drew attention to the bucket at her feet.

Handy if the heel comes off your shoe, but apart from that. She really ought to go. I like to just go home, comfort- eat, cry. Try not to get it on your skin. It burns. You should be here with me. In India. Follow these simple instructions. Let them find someone else to melt cheese on tortilla chips for 2.

Put a bottle of tequila in your bag and walk out the door. Think what that will feel like, Em. Walk out now. Just do it. The night before get a train to Agra and stay in a cheap motel. Next morning get up early and go to the Taj Mahal. Have a look around and at precisely 12 midday you stand directly under the centre of the dome with a red rose in one hand and a copy of Nicholas Nickleby in the other and I will come and find you, Em.

I will be carrying a white rose and my copy of Howards End and when I see you I will throw it at your head. We can live for months, Em, me and you, heading down to Kerala or across to Thailand.

Remember when we stayed up all night after graduation, Em? Moving on. By the way, my mother has a theory about you and me, and if you meet me at the Taj Mahal I will tell you all about it, but only if you meet me.

Sorry if this has annoyed you. Dex and Em, Em and Dex. Taj Mahal, 1st August, 12 noon. I will find you! Love D. He shook the cramp from his hand; eleven pages written at great speed, the most he had written since his finals.

Stretching his arms above his head in satisfaction he thought: He slid his feet back into his sandals, stood a little unsteadily and steeled himself for the communal showers. He was deeply tanned now, his great project of the last two years, the colour penetrating deep into his skin like a creosoted fence. With his head shaved very close to the skull by a street barber, he had also lost some weight but secretly liked the new look: To complete the image he had acquired a cautious tattoo on his ankle, a non-committal yin-and-yang that he would probably regret back in London.

But that was fine.

In London he would wear socks. Sobered by the cold shower, he returned to the tiny room and dug deep in his rucksack to find something to wear for the Dutch medical students, smelling each item of clothing until they lay in a damp, ripe pile on the worn raffia rug. He settled on the least offensive item, a vintage American short-sleeved shirt, and pulled on some jeans, cut off at the calves and worn with no underwear, so that he felt bold and daredevil.

An adventurer, a pioneer. And then he saw the letter. Six blue sheets densely written on both sides. He stared at it as if an intruder had left it behind, and with his new sobriety came the first twinge of doubt. Picking it up gingerly, he glanced at a page at random and immediately looked away, his mouth puckered tight. All those capitals and exclamation marks and awful jokes.

He sounded like some poetry-reading sixth-former, not a pioneer, an adventurer with a shaved head and a tattoo and no underpants beneath his jeans. Did he really want Emma with him in India, laughing at his tattoo, making smart remarks?

Would he have to kiss her at the airport? Would they have to share a bed? Did he really want to see her that much? Yes, he decided, he did.

Because for all its obvious idiocy, there was a sincere affection, more than affection, in what he had written and he would definitely post it that night. If she over-reacted, he could always say he was drunk. That much at least was true.

Then he headed off to the bar to meet his new Dutch friends. Shortly after nine that night, Dexter left the bar with Renee van Houten, a trainee pharmacist from Rotterdam with fading henna on her hands, a jar of temazepam in her pocket and a poorly executed tattoo of Woody Woodpecker at the base of her spine.

He could see the bird leering at him lewdly as he stumbled through the door. In their eagerness to leave, Dexter and his new friend accidentally jostled Heidi Schindler, twenty-three years old, a chemical engineering student from Cologne. Heidi swore at Dexter, but in German, and quietly enough for them not to hear. Bad-tempered, bloated on Diocalm, angry with the friends who kept running off without her, she collapsed backwards on a decrepit rattan sofa and absorbed the full scale of her misery.

She removed her steamy spectacles, wiped them on the corner of her t-shirt, settled on the sofa and felt something hard jab into her hip. Quietly, she swore again. Tucked between the ragged foam cushions was a copy of Howards End, a letter tucked into the opening pages. Even though it was intended for someone else, she felt an automatic thrill of anticipation at the red and white trim of the air-mail envelope. She tugged the letter out, read it to the end, then read it again.

Not quite a love-letter, but near enough. Heidi imagined Emma Morley, who looked not unlike herself, waiting at the Taj Mahal as a handsome blond man approached. She imagined a kiss and Heidi began to feel a little happier. She decided that, whatever happened, Emma Morley must receive this letter. She scanned the pages for clues, the name of the restaurant where Emma worked perhaps, but there was nothing of use.

She resolved to ask at the reception of the hostel over the road. This was, after all, the best that she could do. Heidi Schindler is Heidi Klauss now. Forty-one years old, she lives in a suburb of Frankfurt with a husband and four children, and is reasonably happy, certainly happier than she expected to be at twenty-three. The paperback copy of Howards End is still on the shelf in the spare bedroom, forgotten and unread, with the letter tucked neatly just inside the cover, next to an inscription in small, careful handwriting that reads: To dear Dexter.

A great novel for your great journey. Travel well and return safely with no tattoos. Be good, or as good as you are able. Attention everyone? Stop talking, stop talking, stop talking. In July? Take a seat. Scott kicked his feet up onto the desk. Someone I can rely onto stick around here for a couple of years and really devote themselves to. Emma, are you. So embarrassing.

One Day by David Nicholls

She grabbed a third piece of kitchen paper and wadded it against her mouth. Scott waited until her shoulders had stopped heaving. Bit blue. I see. About being manager? Tell you tomorrow? She took one, lit it, then lifted her spectacles and inspected her eyes in the cracked mirror, licking her finger to remove the tell-tale smears.

She pulled a strand from the scrunchie that held it in place and ran finger and thumb along its length, knowing that when she washed it she would turn the shampoo grey. City hair. She was pale from too many late shifts, and plump too; for some months now she had been putting skirts on over her head.

She blamed all those refried beans; fried then fried again. Once, she had thought she could conquer London. She had imagined a whirl of literary salons, political engagement, larky parties, bittersweet romances conducted on Thames embankments. The city had defeated her, just like they said it would.

Like some overcrowded party, no- one had noticed her arrival, and no-one would notice if she left. The idea of a career in publishing had floated itself.

Her friend Stephanie Shaw had got a job on graduation, and it had transformed her. No more pints of lager and black for Stephanie Shaw. These days she drank white wine, wore neat little suits from Jigsaw and handed out Kettle Chips at dinner parties. There was a recession on and people were clinging to their jobs with grim determination. She thought about taking refuge in education, but the government had ended student grants, and there was no way she could afford the fees. There was voluntary work, for Amnesty International perhaps, but rent and travel ate up all her money, Loco Caliente ate up all her time and energy.

When she had the energy, she would find out. For now she would sit at the table and glare at her lunch. The industrial cheese had set solid like plastic, and in sudden disgust Emma pushed it away and reached into her bag, pulling out an expensive new black leather notebook with a stubby fountain pen clipped to the cover. Turning to a fresh new page of creamy white paper, she quickly began to write.

Nachos It was the nachos that did it. The steaming variegated mess like the mess of her life Summing up all that was wrong With Her Life. Emma stopped writing, then looked away and stared at the ceiling, as if giving someone a chance to hide.

One Day (Movie Tie-in Edition)

She looked back at the page in the hope of being surprised by the brilliance of what was there. She shuddered and gave a long groan, then laughed, shaking her head as she methodically scratched out each line, crosshatching on top of this until each word was obliterated.

Soon there was so much ink that it had soaked through the paper. She turned back a page to where the blots had seeped through and glanced at what was written there.

Edinburgh morning, 4 a. The elusive thing? Once more she shuddered, as if peeking beneath a bandage, and snapped the notebook shut. She had reached a turning point. She no longer believed that a situation could be made better by writing a poem about it. Ian was in the doorway.

She watched them from the kitchen, nose pressed against the greasy glass of the circular window as they slumped insolently in a central booth, sipping gaudy drinks and laughing at the menu. The girl was long and slim with pale skin, black eye make-up and black, black hair, cut short and expensively asymmetrical, her long legs in sheer black leggings and high- ankled boots.

Two big hands draped on her shoulders. Like a baby. Or a monkey. You need to dangle something shiny in front of him. About girls liking bastards. What was it, she wondered, this need to brandish his shiny new metropolitan life at her?

Too much had happened to him, too little had happened to her. Even so this would be the third girlfriend, lover, whatever, that she had met in the last nine months, Dexter presenting them up to her like a dog with a fat pigeon in his mouth. Was it some kind of sick revenge for something? Because she got a better degree than him? Big hug! The company of TV presenters had rubbed off on him, and he spoke to her now less like an old friend, more like our next very special guest.

Naomi smiled back, the drinking straw nipped tight between white teeth. I want to download you a drunk. A drink! I mean a drink. The girl wrinkled her nose. Two or three? Em, are you joining us? Just the bill, please, um. Tip you. The parched yellow grass of the hill was crowded with young professional people, many straight from their offices, talking and laughing as three different stereos competed with each other, and Dexter lay in the centre of it all and dreamt about television.

The idea of being a professional photographer had been abandoned without much of a fight. Television, on the other hand, television wanted him right now. Growing up there had always been a television in the home, but there was something a little unwholesome about watching the thing. Now, in the last nine months it had suddenly come to dominate his life.

He was a convert, and with the passion of the new recruit he found himself getting quite emotional about the medium, as if he had finally found a spiritual home. Emma could say what she liked about the Tories Dexter was no fan either, though more for reasons of style than principle but they had certainly shaken up the media. Until recently, broadcasting had seemed stuffy, worthy and dull; heavily unionised, grey and bureaucratic, full of bearded lifers and do-gooders and old dears pushing tea-trolleys; a sort of showbiz branch of the Civil Service.

Redlight Productions, on the other hand, was part of the boom of new, youthful, privately owned independent companies wresting the means of production away from those fusty old Reithian dinosaurs. There was money in the media; the fact sang out from the primary-coloured open-plan offices with their state-of-the-art computer systems and generous communal fridges. His rise through this world had been meteoric. STDs, drugs, dance music, drugs, police brutality, drugs. Dexter produced hyperactive little films of grim housing estates shot from crazy angles through fish- eye lenses, the clouds speeded up to a soundtrack of acid house.

There was even talk of putting him in front of the cameras in the next series.

He was excelling, he was flying and there seemed to be every possibility that he might make his parents proud. He liked striding down Berwick Street to an edit-suite with a jiffy bag of videotapes, nodding at people just like him. Secretly, he liked the fact that it was one of the better-looking industries, and one that valued youth. No chance, in this brave new world of TV, of walking into a conference room to find a group of sixty-two-year- olds brainstorming.

What happened to TV people when they reached a certain age? Where did they go? Never mind, it suited him, as did the preponderance of young women like Naomi: In rare moments of self-doubt, Dexter had once worried that a lack of intellect might hold him back in life, but here was a job where confidence, energy, perhaps even a certain arrogance were what mattered, all qualities that lay within his grasp.

Yes, you had to be smart, but not Emma-smart. Just politic, shrewd, ambitious. Who knows, perhaps Naomi and Emma might even become friends. Soothed by these thoughts, and on the verge of sleep, he was woken by a shadow across his face. He opened one eye, squinting up. You do! These days she barely even flinched. Tell me all about it. He has become someone who goes to wrap parties.

For your bad breath? Emma stretched and concentrated on the sky. And dangerous.

It was a nice mouth as she remembered, and if she were fearless, bold and asymmetrical like this Naomi girl she would lean over now and kiss him, and it occurred to her that she had never kissed anyone, that is never initiated the kiss.

She had been kissed of course, suddenly and far too hard by drunken boys at parties, kisses that came swinging out of nowhere like punches. Ian had tried three weeks ago while she was mopping out the meat locker, looming in so violently that she had thought he was going to head-butt her. Even Dexter had kissed her once, many, many years ago. Would it really be so strange to kiss him back? What might happen if she were to do it now? She let her head loll to the other side to watch the others on the hill.

The evening light was starting to fade now, and two hundred prosperous, attractive young people were throwing frisbees, lighting disposable barbecues, making plans for the evening.

Yet she felt as far removed from these people, with their interesting careers and CD players and mountain bikes, as if it had been a TV commercial, for vodka perhaps or small sporty cars.

I look like the President of the Ramblers Association. Hairy Mary. Over this distance, I can hear the suction. Like someone unblocking a sink. Or desperate. Dexter nudged her with his elbow. Me and you? I left the lid off the Tipp-Ex once and I thought my shoes were trying to eat me. You have no idea how much fun. Any action? I have no emotions.

Or a nun. A robot nun. Hourly he was rendered idiotic by billboards, magazine covers, an inch of crimson bra-strap on a passing stranger, and it was even worse in summer. Someone he cared for dearly was engaged in some kind of nervous collapse, and he should concentrate on that, rather than the three girls behind her who had just started a water-fight. He steered his thoughts away from the subject of sex, his brain as nimble as an aircraft carrier. Looks like captain of the computer club.

What about him? Now pass the bottle, will you? While not sentimental, there were times when Dexter could sit quietly and watch Emma Morley laughing or telling a story and feel absolutely sure that she was the finest person he knew. Sometimes he almost wanted to say this out loud, interrupt her and just tell her.

But this was not one of those times and instead he thought how tired she looked, sad and pale, and when she looked at the floor her chin had started to pouch. What she really needed, he thought, ablaze with compassion, was someone to take her in hand and unlock her potential.

He imagined a sort of montage, looking on patrician and kindly as Emma tried on a series of incredible new outfits. He had an idea, and reached for her hand before announcing solemnly: My friend Ian said exactly the same thing to me while we were disinfecting the meat fridge. Except he only gave me until I was thirty-five.

Big white dress, bridesmaids, little page boys, blue garter. His mind snagged on the word like a fish on a hook. Nothing wrong with restaurant work. But you hate that job, you hate every single moment. Most people hate their jobs. Worse still, she could feel hot, irrational tears starting to form in the back of her eyes.

Why was she being like this? He was only trying to help. In what way did he benefit from this friendship? They turned to look at each other at the same time.

God, I swear, I bore myself. Just shut up and take it. He lay down once more, and after a moment she followed and jumped a little when she found out that he had slid his arm beneath her shoulders. There was a self-conscious moment of mutual discomfort before she turned onto her side and curled towards him.

Tightening his arm around her, he spoke into the top of her head. Why do you think people say that stuff, Em? But I should go. Her little mouth crammed full of drugs like a little druggy hamster. They stayed there for a while, then walked down to the off-licence and back up the hill to see the sun set over the city, drinking wine and eating nothing but a large bag of expensive crisps.

Strange animal cries could be heard from Regents Park Zoo, and finally they were the last people on the hill. When she finally got home the central heating would probably be on and Tilly Killick would be there with her dressing-gown hanging open, clinging to the radiators like a gecko and eating pesto out of the jar. She made a firm resolution, one of the resolutions she was making almost daily these days.

No more sleepovers, no more writing poetry, no more wasting time. Time to tidy up your life. Time to start again. Day two of a ten-day island-hopping holiday, and The Rules of Engagement were still holding firm. Emma was single again; a brief, undistinguished relationship with Spike, a bicycle repairman whose fingers smelt perpetually of WD40, had ended with barely a shrug on either side, but had at least served to give her confidence a boost.

And her bicycle had never been in better shape. Ingrid was the kind of sexually confident girl who wore her bra on top of her shirt, and although she was by no means threatened by Emma or indeed by anyone on this earth, it had been decided by all parties that it might be better to get a few things straight before the swimwear was unveiled, the cocktails were drunk.

Not that anything was likely to happen; that brief window had closed some years ago and they were immune to each other now, secure in the confines of firm friendship. Number One: Whatever happened, there were to be no shared beds, neither double nor single, no drunken cuddles or hugs; they were not students anymore. Rule Two. No funny business. No skinny-dipping: She did not want to see Dexter in his underpants or in the shower or, God forbid, going to the toilet.

In retaliation, Dexter proposed Rule Number Five. No Scrabble. More and more of his friends were playing it now, in a knowing ironic way, triple-word-score-craving freaks, but it seemed to him like a game designed expressly to make him feel stupid and bored. Now on Day Two, with The Rules still in place, they lay on the deck of the ancient rust- spotted ferry as it chugged slowly from Rhodes towards the smaller Dodecanese islands.

Their first night had been spent in the Old Town, drinking sugary cocktails from hollowed- out pineapples, unable to stop grinning at each other with the novelty of it all.

The ferry had left Rhodes while it was still dark and now at nine a. Dexter cracked first, sighing and placing his book on his chest: A moment passed. He sighed again, for effect. The girl was pretty and nervous, the boy large and pale, almost magnesium white in the morning sun. Dexter shielded his eyes and smiled broadly up at them. Emma quietly groaned. Dexter held his hand up.

Dexter became aware of the chug of the engines and Lolita lying open on his chest. He slipped it quietly into his bag. More dead air. God, no. Mainly I work in a restaurant. Dexter decided to round up the interview. Maybe get a beer or summink? Dexter had never consciously set out to be famous, though he had always wanted to be successful, and what was the point of being successful in private? People should know.

Now that fame had happened to him it did make a certain sense, as if fame were a natural extension of being popular at school. Appearing on camera had been like sitting at a piano for the first time and discovering he was a virtuoso. But public recognition remained a new experience. Emma watched this performance, amused; the straining for nonchalance, the slight flare of the nostrils, the smile that flickered at the corners of his mouth.

She pushed her sunglasses up onto her forehead. Dexter shrugged. After a while Dexter spoke again. As a presenter? It was, well — untouchable. Emma glanced over to check that he was smiling, and smiled too.

Mid-morning approached and while Dexter slept, Emma caught her first sight of their destination: She had always assumed that water like this was a lie told by brochures, a trick with lenses and filters, but there it was, sparkling and emerald green.

At first glance the island seemed unpopulated except for the huddle of houses spreading up from the harbour, buildings the colour of coconut ice. She found herself laughing quietly at the sight of it. Each year until she was sixteen, it had been two weeks fighting with her sister in a caravan in Filey while her parents drank steadily and looked out at the rain, a sort of harsh experiment in the limits of human proximity.

It was as if the air was somehow different here; not just how it tasted and smelt, but the element itself. In London the air was something you peered through, like a neglected fish tank. Here everything was bright and sharp, clean and clear.

She heard the snap of a camera shutter and turned in time to see Dexter take her photo again. He joined her, his arms holding the rail on either side of her waist. They disembarked — the first time she felt that she had ever disembarked — and immediately found a flurry of activity on the quayside as the casual travellers and backpackers began the scramble for the best accommodation. And a desk.

She shouted after him: She no longer wore spectacles, and there was a scattering of freckles across her chest that he had never seen before, the bare skin turning from pink to brown as it disappeared below the neckline.

Nicholls David. One Day

Two rooms. There she reached into her bag and pulled out a pen and notebook, an expensive, cloth-bound affair, her journal for the trip. She opened it on the first blank page and tried to think of something she could write, some insight or observation other than that everything was fine. Everything was fine, and she had the rare, new sensation of being exactly where she wanted to be. Dexter and the landlady stood in the middle of the bare room: He walked through louvred double-doors onto a large balcony painted to match the colour of the sky, overlooking the bay below.

It was like walking out onto some fantastic stage. We need two rooms? I have second room. Maybe play the guilt card instead. She put her hand on his forearm. He sat again. A big double. To conform to The Rules. She stood on the balcony and listened to the cicadas, a noise that she had only heard in films before and had half suspected to be an exotic fiction. She was delighted, too, to see lemons growing in the garden; actual lemons, in trees; they seemed glued on. At University Emma had held firm private convictions about the vanity of contact lenses, nurturing as they did conventional notions of idealised feminine beauty.

The lenses had a tendency to make her prone to random and alarming facial spasms, ratty blinks. After a rigorous bout of facial contortion and what felt like surgery, she managed to retrieve the shard, stepping out of the bathroom, red-eyed and blinking tearfully. Dexter was sitting on the bed, his shirt unbuttoned. Are you crying? Emma had put a lot of thought, perhaps too much, into her swimsuit, settling finally for a plain black all-in-one from John Lewis that might have been branded The Edwardian.

As she pulled her dress over her head, she wondered if Dexter thought she was in some way chickening-out by not wearing a bikini, as if a one-piece swimming costume belonged with spectacles, desert boots and bike helmets as somehow prudish, cautious, not quite feminine. Not that she cared, though she did wonder, as her dress passed over her head, if she had caught his eyes flickering in her direction.

Either way, she was pleased to note that he had gone for the baggy shorts look. A week of lying next to Dexter in Speedos would be more uncomfortable than she could bear. Not like you, you globetrotter.

You want some? There was something about the gesture too, the tilt of the head and the pulling back of her hair as she applied the lotion to her neck, and he felt the pleasant nausea that accompanied desire. Oh God, he thought, eight more days of this. Her swimming costume was scooped low at the back and she could do no more than dab ineffectually at the lowest point. Offering to apply sun cream was a corny old routine, beneath him really, and he thought it best to pass it off as medical concern.

He began to apply the lotion, his face so close that she could feel his breath on her neck, while he could feel the heat reflecting off her skin, both of them working hard on the impression that this was everyday behaviour and in no way a clear contravention of Rules Two and Four, those prohibiting Flirtation and Physical Modesty.

As a distraction she placed her hand on his ankle and yanked it towards her. From India. It means put some socks on. They swam and slept and read, and as the fiercest heat faded and the beach become more populated a problem became apparent. Dexter noticed it first. Over there. Having a barbecue. Dexter waved back cheerily: No thanks.

And what about Rule Four? We can bend it. She lay her back down once again. You could be a model. Now can we change the subject? He nudged her with his elbow. Nudity- wise. After the graduation party? Our one night of love? Besides, as I recall nothing happened. You should be on television. He had in fact retained a vivid mental picture of Emma from that night, lying on the single bed, naked except for the skirt around her waist, her arms thrown up above her head as they kissed.

He thought about this, and eventually fell asleep. In the late afternoon they returned to the room, tired and sticky and tingling from the sun, and there it was again: They stepped around it and walked out onto the balcony that overlooked the sea, hazy now as the sky shaded from blue into the pink of the evening. Who wants first shower? There was no shower curtain, and she could see Dexter standing side on beneath the cold water, eyes closed against the spray, head back, arms raised.

She noticed his shoulder blades, the long brown back, the two hollows at the base of his spine above the small white bottom. But oh God, he was turning now, and the can of beer slipped through her hand and exploded, fizzing and foaming, propelling itself noisily around the floor.

She threw a towel over it as if capturing some wild rodent, then looked up to see Dexter, her platonic friend, naked except for his clothes held loosely in front of him. Then it was her turn to shower.

She closed the door, washed the beer from her hands then contorted herself as she struggled to undress in the tiny, humid bathroom that still smelt of his aftershave. Rule Four required that Dexter go and stand on the balcony while she dried herself and got dressed but after some experimentation he found that if he kept his sunglasses on and turned his head just so, he could see her reflection in the glass door as she struggled to rub lotion onto the low parabola of her newly tanned back.

He watched the wriggle of her hips as she pulled on her underwear, the concave curve of her back and arch of shoulder blades as she fastened her bra, the raised arms and the blue summer dress coming down like a curtain. She joined him on the balcony. It was Emma, but all new. She glowed, and he thought of the words sun-kissed, then thought kiss her, take hold of her face and kiss her. She opened her eyes suddenly.


Apparently they have this thing called Greek Salad. The air hung smoky with burning lamb, and they sat in a quiet place at the end of the harbour where the crescent of the beach began and drank wine that tasted of pine. Dexter, meanwhile, develops a drinking and drug problem, and watches his career collapse. Emma and Dexter's friendship grows increasingly difficult after Emma is constantly hurt by Dexter, who attempts to hide his feelings for her from both her and himself.

Finally, after being treated rudely by Dexter at a restaurant, Emma breaks up the friendship. At the wedding of Emma's former roommate, Emma and Dexter meet again.

Emma admits that she wants Dexter back. At this juncture, she has just ended an affair with the headmaster of the school she teaches in, and Dexter has fallen in love with another woman, Sylvie, who is pregnant.

At this reunion, Dexter invites Emma, who is disappointed by the situation, to his wedding.

Emma tries to overcome her problems and begins to write, while Dexter is unemployed and overwhelmed by his role as a father after his divorce from Sylvie, who was having an affair. Emma leaves to go to Paris in the hope of writing a sequel to her first successful children's novel. When Dexter visits her in Paris, he learns that she has met someone and likes him, and for the first time admits his feelings to her.

After talking about their relationship, Emma chooses Dexter. Emma and Dexter form a relationship, are happy together, and get married, but Emma wants a child.

The couple finds themselves frustrated by their failing attempts to have a child. On the anniversary of the day they met after graduation and the day they got together, Emma and Dexter have an appointment to see a house.

While travelling there, Emma has a bike accident and dies. After her death, Dexter finds himself in despair. He starts to drink again and provokes people in bars to get beaten. He is comforted by his ex-wife Sylvie, his father, and his daughter. Three years after Emma's death Dexter travels with his daughter to Edinburgh, where he and Emma met, and they climb the same hill together that he and Emma climbed 19 years ago.

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