And another update whooo! Thank you again for all my terrific reviews i love you all :)
The next day saw the family limousine appearing in a side street and a sister screaming and kicking at the prospect of leaving the factory and returning home. Veruca put up such an endless performance hoping if she poured Hot Chocolate over the precious white sofa (giving me a heart attack) and continuously trying to break into different rooms, (all of which had been vaulted shut after the assault on the Fizzylifting Drinks Room) that Willy and I would cave in and allow her to stay. On the contrary I believe these actions had Willy almost kicking her out of the door. I was to remain behind until we had worked out a solution for my lack of vocals and watched from the open window of my own Living Room as Willy personally escorted her to the car. We had made up the excuse that I was staying to help Willy with one of his inventions involving music as I was an accomplished violinist.
It was unusually quiet in the factory without the presence of my sister, the oompa loompas had removed the tiny candy cotton wool buds from their ears and Willy appeared much more relaxed but still a little depressed. On my second day; my first filled with an endless round of sweets all designed to get my voice back and lounging on the sofas with Hot Chocolate and desperately wanting a television or something to entertain myself with till I was given permission at once to go to the Television Room; I was finally allowed to accompany Willy to the Inventing Room once again where I sat beside him as he sketches, wrote formulas, put various ingredients into the high-tech machines, including what I thought was a shoe and thousands of questions for me. Willy was much quieter than usual and his sudden change of behaviour had started to really worry me. He assured me that it was not because of me, the other children or even Veruca! Though he was still as secretive as ever, making me all the more determined to wheedle it out of him.
I was lying on my large queen size bed flicking through Willy's copy of James and the Giant Peach I had stolen from his bedroom when the door opened and the chocolatier stopped in the doorway looking dazed and confused.
"Sorry, I thought this was my room." He said with a hint of embarrassment, he turned to exit when I quickly climbed off the bed to take his arm. Fortunately Willy no longer froze at my touch as I passed him a piece of paper.
"What is wrong Willy, you are acting really strange lately."
"I didn't know I was normal before." He replied with a little of that old light gleaming at the mischievous comment. "Oh and I have another sweet for you." Willy handed me toffee flavoured bon bon which I sucked on, again I was thankful the sweets all tasted delicious. Willy waited and when I did not open my mouth Willy opened his own and I realised that having not spoken for the past couple of days I had forgotten to try.
"Well alright you weren't, but you are certainly not yourself lately." We both froze and suddenly my arms were around Willy Wonka's neck, as I planted a gentle kiss on his cheek in sheer happiness at having my voice back again. Willy went scarlet but laughed it off.
"I knew I'd get it right in the end." He winked and I began to lead him towards the bed and he made a little noise of surprise when I sat him next to me. Once we were settled I began my interrogation. "Now what is eating you Willy."
"Well, besides not being able to stop the oompa loompas turning into blueberries from the gum I guess it's Charlie's decision."
I frowned a little till I remembered that Charlie had won Willy's Golden Ticket competition. "Of course he won."
There was a pause where Willy stared at my hand that was still on his arm, yet I felt emboldened and kept it there. "So…" I began.
"So I wanted to give that little boy my entire factory." Smiled Willy sadly and I blinked not sure if I had heard him right.
"Are you serious?" I asked and Willy laughed a little.
"Yeah dead serious."
I flung my arms around him in excitement for Charlie and his family who had just won the jackpot. A little twinge of jealously ran through me at the thought of him living with Willy Wonka at the factory, but no one deserved it more than him. Willy patted me on the back and relaxed into my solid hug and I could have sworn he was beaming.
"You see one day I was having my semi-annual hair cut and I had the strangest revelation." Started Willy and I smiled at the precision to which he lived his life. "I noticed one single grey hair on my shoulder and in that one strand of hair I saw my life's work. My factory, my beloved oompa loompas, who would look after them when I was gone?" He finished sadly and I resisted the urge to shout that I would gladly take care of the huge factory and him.
"Is this why you sent out the tickets?" I asked and Willy nodded with a small smile.
"Your quick. Yeah I decided to invite five children to my factory and the one that was the least rotten would be the winner."
"Did you tell Charlie all this? Obviously he was the child you chose."
"Of course I told him, he was the best outta the bunch." Answered Willy and I squeezed his arm.
"Well I suppose you would never choose Veruca." I sighed wistfully at the thought.
"No i'm afraid she was simply too bad a nut." Said Willy apologetically, "If only you were one of the children."
"I would have still made you give it Charlie." I replied quickly and Willy stared at me.
"You would?" He sounded incredibly surprised.
"Yes I would. Willy, he and his family so desperately needed something like you offered him. I already have a sweet life, I would not have felt right taking it away from him." I was being one hundred percent truthful, despite my obvious affection for Mr Wonka; Charlie with his scruffy, mis-matched jumper and his eyes shining as that melted chocolate from the river had made him positively glow would make a far better chocolatier than I ever would.
"Huh, it's too bad he turned it down then." Muttered Willy.
"What?" My eyes widened incredulously, "What on earth would have him refuse such a fantastic opportunity."
Willy flushed bright red and I narrowed my gaze. "Willy what did you do?" I sounded like I was scolding Veruca.
"Well I kinda told him if he were to come and live with me, then he would have to leave his parent's behind." Ventured Willy before yelping as I hit him over the head with the book, knocking his top hat off.
"Willy" How could you ever ask that of him?" I challenged in shock over the cold-hearted ultimatum.
"But a chocolatier has to run free and solo. He has to follow his dreams." Willy tried to reason clutching onto my hand but I pulled away.
"I do not care Willy Wonka. Charlie's family is all he had before you came along and the idea that he would abandon them for anything is simply ludicrous." There was that hint of finality in my voice but Willy kept on going.
"Diana please, just look at me. I had no family and I am a giant success."
That stopped me in mid rant; "No family?" I repeated and Willy shook his head. "Willy…"
"Its okay, my dad never wanted me to be a chocolatier. He didn't even let me eat chocolate."
And the pieces all began to fit; Willy's almost obsessive love of chocolate and all things sweet, his quirky personality and current dejectedness. "I am sorry." I told him gently and he nodded trying to smile it off.
"Like I said it's okay." Though Willy swallowed and loosened the 'W' round his neck, he had not bothered to put his top hat back on.
"Why was he so against you eating chocolate?" I asked tentatively in case the subject was still sore to talk about.
"Well, he's a dentist." Admitted Willy. There was silence before I could not hold on any longer and burst out laughing at the pure irony. Willy looked hurt before he too cracked a beaming smile and joined in laughing, it seemed he had needed this laugh for a very long time.
"The great Willy Wonka's father is a dentist." I gasped between giggles and Willy nodded now finding it as hilarious as me.
"Yeah and he's really good at his job. He wanted me to have the most perfect teeth so he fixed this ugly head brace on me that made a lot of the other children laugh at me."
I frowned wondering if Willy Wonka was notoriously bullied for his head brace but decided to hold that question for another time. "Well I can honestly say you have the most perfect teeth I have ever seen in my whole life." Willy giggled and I pressed on, "Honestly you make me feel jealous when I see them." And Willy unconsciously ran his tongue over his teeth, I beamed at the healthy glow that illuminated those violet eyes again. I thought hit me.
"Does this explain the flashbacks you have whenever anyone mentions your childhood?"
Willy looked at me in surprise and I knew I had hit the nail on the head. "Yeah, it does." I smiled and gave him a wink of my own.
"You always looked so sad after those flashbacks." I decided to be honest again and Willy refused to meet my eyes.
"Yeah, it ended badly with him." I took his purple gloved hand and ran my fingers soothingly against his. He looked perplexed at the gesture and I knew the subject was closed; I had the sudden urge to feel his skin against my own.
"Can I take your glove off?" I asked shyly, letting a blush creep onto my cheeks. Willy stared at me before slowly nodding. I removed it to see alabaster skin, calloused at the fingertips. "Why do you always wear them? I have never seen them off of you."
"Working with chocolate and sugar can be messy." Willy's hand twitched under my touch as I stroked down his index finger. "And painful."
"So; getting back to the original subject, I assume Charlie refused the position."
"Yeah he did."
"And what are you going to do now?" I looked down as Willy closed his hand on mine.
"I dunno. I have no heir and my candy sales are worse than ever."
"They are not selling?" I could not understand why anyone would not want a Wonka bar.
"The old ones are, but all my news ones are going terribly and I'm second guessing myself which is nuts." Willy unbuttoned his purple tailcoat revealing a patterned waistcoat underneath a pinstripe shirt. "I've always made whatever candy I felt like and…"
Willy froze as if struck by something, he glanced up at me. I did not have the slightest idea what was processing through that brilliant mind of his.
"That's just it isn't it Diana. I've always made the kinda candy I've felt like but now because I feel terrible the candy's terrible." Willy had an awestruck expression on his face as he turned to me. "You're very good." He whispered to me mind-blown by his revelation; I shrugged not bothering to argue that I had not done a single thing.
"Well now that I have helped you reach that brilliant observation, we need to make you feel good again." I suggested and Willy grinned shrugging his tailcoat off onto my bed.
"I guess what would make me happy is having Charlie as my heir."
I stood and took both of his hands in my own, Willy too stood. "Well then we will have to go and convince him."
Charlie certainly was stubborn when it came to even speaking to his idol again. I think Willy's offer had completely changed the child's view on his chocolate hero, and it was only when Willy mentioned his father again did Charlie volunteer to come with us in an attempt to help Willy reconcile with his father. Willy, after walking into the elevator again flew us to the last location his father's house had dwelled in, only to reveal a snowy tundra with one townhouse right in front of us. Charlie and I exchanged looks as we followed Willy who had grabbed my hand for support and was slowly cutting off the circulation there. As we approached Charlie happily told me about his father's new promotion in the toothpaste factory and the whole turkey his family had eaten last night. He certainly looked healthier now and he was all smiles again.
"I think we've got the wrong house." Started Willy but upon seeing the gold nameplate reading,
DR WONKA DENTAL SURGERY
I knew we were in the right place. Charlie went ahead and knocked on the door and no sooner had he finished then it opened revealing an aging man dressed all in white with a dentist's apron with tight, white hair. He took us all in, Charlie grinning widely, Willy in his fly-like glasses I first met him in and me trying to look like the sane one here.
"Do you have an appointment?" Willy's father directed the question to me and I shook my head.
"No, but he's overdue." Charlie replied smartly inclining his head towards Willy and I smirked at the words. Dr Wonka did not question us but simply gestured for Willy to take a seat in the dentist's chair. I had always hated dentists, I often had to have a little work done due to too many Wonka Bar, same for Veruca. Willy was certainly apprehensive about sitting in the chair and looked positively petrified when the chair swung back and his father began to poke the metal instruments around his unknown son's perfect teeth. If Dr Wonka found something wrong no one would be more surprised than me.
Charlie nudged me and led me over to a wall full of newspaper clippings, we peered at them as Willy clenched the arms of the chair clearly unnerved. I wanted to go and hold his hand again. Upon peering at the clippings we saw all the headlines had something to do with Willy Wonka. Charlie began flicking through a scrapbook with even more articles in it, starting with Wonka's Chocolate Shop on Cherry Street where I had worked and ending with the launch of Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory. I stopped to look to Willy and then his father, the man never stopped loving his child. I now believed that Dr Wonka only wanted the best for his son, I felt a huge weight of empathy for both of them hit my shoulders.
"I haven't seen bicuspids like these in…" Dr Wonka slowly lowered the tiny mirror instrument away from Willy's mouth as the realisation of just who was sitting in his chair washed over his. Father and son looked deep into each other's eyes and it was then I noticed they had the same colour. "Willy?" Asked the older man in a stunned whisper.
"Hi dad." Was Willy's response, there was a tentative awkwardness to them both as they stared at each other.
"All these years; and you haven't flossed." Joked Willy's father and I smirked at the humour, Charlie and I knowing the damage had been healed.
"Not once." Came the witty reply and his father smiled a little before gently leaning towards his son who came to rest his head against his father's chest. It was a tender moment for the Wonkas and I turned Charlie away to pretend we were preoccupied with the newspapers. It was only when I felt a hand on my shoulder did I turn to see Willy's kind face looking right back at me.
"How about a cup of tea?" Asked Willy's father and we all agreed though Willy asked for a Hot Chocolate instead and his father complied with the exact amount of marshmallows and whipped cream. I soon learned that Dr Wonka's name was in fact Michael and he took the rare time with his son to congratulate him on the huge success that he was. Willy was as socially awkward as always but soon settled into explaining his method for the Strawberry Flavoured Chocolate Coated Fudge, one of his father's favourite confectionaries. It was an hour later when we finally began to make a move when I was called back by Michael who smiled warmly at me.
"I am glad to see my son so happy. He deserves someone as kind as you."
I went crimson at the blessing I felt I did not deserve, "Thank you Michael. He has been incredibly hospital towards me."
"And why not?" Smiled Dr Wonka, "Just keep him happy will you?"
I began to realise just what he was implying and I began to stutter consciously aware of Willy and smart little Charlie waiting for me just in the hallway. "Oh…I, I mean I am not…"
"You do not need to be modest around me, I have seen the attention he pays you and the way you return it." He gave me a wink that was characteristically Wonka that it surprised me into silence.
the way I return it?
I did not get another opportunity to justify myself as I was steered out of the door and Willy latched onto my hand again. Once we were in the great glass elevator again I was still mulling over my last conversation but tuned back into reality to see Willy and Charlie watching me expectantly.
"What was that sorry?"
Willy giggled, "I just repeated my offer to Charlie, this time his family can come along too."
I grinned at little Charlie who was looking as if Christmas had come early, which I suppose it had to him.
"And I also said that my invitation for you to come a visit us whenever you want still stands." Finished Willy and I smiled gently immediately accepting. We dropped Charlie off at his home and spent an hour getting acquainted with the Buckets, Grandpa Joe nearly hit the ceiling when he heard the exquisite news and Grandma Josephine beckoned Willy over for a hug which he timidly accepted. I found I like Charlie's mother and father, they were humble and grateful for every small thing in their life. Mrs Bucket dropped the knife mid-slice of cabbage when she heard the news.
Winding down back at the factory resulted mostly in preparing to take my leave tomorrow morning, a fact Willy seemed particularly down about even though I promised to visit in the next two weeks. Knowing I could visit whenever I wanted was a sweet treat beyond any chocolate Willy had ever made and I took a generous selection of my favourite Wonka confections to take home with me. The limousine honked for me and after giving Willy the longest hug he had had in years which he generously accepted and squeezed me back tightly and two kisses on his cheeks, the ride home was incredibly disheartening for me though James tried to cheer me up. Yet the only thing running through my mind was Willy Wonka and my expected visit in two weeks time, now I only had to explain to Veruca why she was never allowed to come with me.
Yes i know this is a rather short Chapter but i promise, this is not the end of Willy and Diana! ;)
There is plenty more to come all in due time. xx