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"I've got you a present," he shouted. "It's in my coat pocket"

"Thank you, Hamish." Priscilla went to his coat, which was hanging behind the back door, and felt in the pockets and then pulled out a small square box. As she did so, a crumpled piece of paper fell out and dropped to the floor. She picked it up and automatically smoothed it out. It was Harriet's letter to Hamish. She shouldn't have read it, but she did.

So, thought Priscilla, reading between the lines, Hamish made a pass, and a heavy one, too.

"Like it?" called Hamish.

"What?" Priscilla feverishly tore off the wrapping paper from the present. "Yes. Lovely. My favorite French perfume." She carefully put the crumpled letter back in his pocket. Towser was eating with relish, his tail still wagging, delighted to be home.

With nervous efficient movements, Priscilla grilled a steak, fried potatoes, mushrooms and tomatoes, put the lot on a tray and carried it through.

"I'm being fair spoiled," said Hamish with a grin. Then he said, "Where's yours?"

"I'm not really hungry," said Priscilla, "and I've just remembered I have a lot to do. I'd better go."

"Oh, can't you stay for a bit? I thought Johnson was handling everything."

"No, no. Must run. 'Bye, Hamish." And she fairly ran from the room and the next minute he heard the kitchen door slam.

He felt very fiat. He had not even opened his presents.