I awake to gaze up and see my Peter, my baby and he's distant. He was so quiet as the train left Manchester Victoria. He's gazing out of the window of the train and I can see the tearstains on his cheeks. I squirm beside him and he suddenly snaps from his daydream. He musters up the best smile he can manage; I smile back, my poor baby. Peter wraps his arm round me and I feel so safe, I think back the last time I felt this safe in a mans arms were Liam's. Liam. God that was so long ago now and I miss him so much, even though I love peter, and I really do with all my heart, Liam will always be 'the one'. My eyes close as I think back on my hectic life, its been such a drama since I moved to Weatherfield only six years ago!
"Carla" I hear Peter's voice and he shakes me gently.
I gaze up once more and see his dark eyes shining into mine, He's still upset the whole Simon/Leanne/Nick happy family thing is destroying him.
"We here?" I ask him gently, he nods and I gaze out the train window as the train rolls into the station to a gentle stop. I wobble as I stand from my seat and Peter grabs my arm to help steady me. He grabs the bags before I have chance and gestures for me to get off. I walk ahead of him turning and giving him a reassuring smile before I get off and step onto the platform. He doesn't even smile back. I find my self cursing Leanne silently for turning up and ruining the whole plan but in all honestly it was a very stupid idea.
We walk beside each other in silence as we head down the platform towards our next train, Southampton headed and it's late, very late and I'm shattered its been the longest day. Peter eventually offers out his spare hand as we wait on platform 4 at Kings Cross. Its so busy late at night and I just want to sleep. It's as though he can sense my anxiety he squeezes my hand. "I Love you Carla" he says, but he doesn't look at me. Tears well in my eyes, his words are empty.
The train screeches into the platform pulling up right beside us. Peter lets go of my hand and places it on my back gesturing for me to step aboard. I take my seat, this time by the window; Peter stores our bags and slides beside me. I smile at him again, again no smile I pout and face out the window. I can just imagine the street now, Leanne home gloating how Simon chose her and bleating on about how glad she is Peter and I have finally left. She's probably hoping we won't ever return.
I turn and Peter is staring at me, still blank. "Peter, baby, what's up? You've been so distant" I ask, my voice a little choked. "Yes Carla, I'm fine, I just want to get to Southampton and get on that boat" he replies.
"ok, baby" I reply trying not to cry. I hope he isn't going to be like this for long, this is where it all started going wrong before. I gaze as the blackness descends as we quicken the pace and the odd light flashes passed the train window. Peter is blissfully asleep but I just can't. I'm wondering if I made a mistake and I think back to how I was with the people who care about me, Rob, Michelle and now I've left them to take care of my responsibilities. A smile creeps across my face as I think about the worst that could happen with Rob acting like he owns the place, but Michelle is there and she will keep him in check. I giggle loudly at the thought of her scolding him, it disturbs Peter and he snorts as wakes up and I smile at him a full on Cheshire grin developing.
"What?" he grumbles looking at me all puzzled. I haven't gigled like this since I was young, in fact probably since before I met Pauly Walnut. I grasp my hand with my mouth to stop the giggling starting again.
"Nothing Baby" I eventually reply as the grin leaves my face but the smile can't help but remain. Peter grins excitedly at me.
"What are we going to do now? Big adventure an' all" I ask him teasingly.
"We're getting that boat, if we don't I'll go back and you said going back wouldn't help" he blurts out suddenly.
I smile at him, its all I can do, I know I'm right, if we go back Leanne and Peter will just fight further over poor Simon.
Morning has come and the train pulls in at Southampton station. It must be early morning just after dawn the sky looks beautiful and the sun blinds me. So this is what is happening, this is really going to happen, Peter and I are just going to get on this boat and all will be fine. Peter is once again ready, bags in hand and I think he is really going to enjoy his time away from Weatherfield despite Simon's absence but am I?.
Peter pulls out his phone and I watch him from the queue at the deli where I am queuing as I am in desperate need of my morning coffee. My phone suddenly rings making me jump. I fumble in my handbag and pull out the handset. Glaring down at the screen Michelle's name flashes in time with the rings. Bit early but I answer it after a moment's hesitation. "hi" I answer knowing I'm in big trouble, I can just sense it. I turn and see Peter staring at his feet beginning to pace and his finger in his other ear so he can hear his call. Michelle has begun wittering on in my ear but I've not heard a word. "Carla!" she suddenly screams and I snap back to my own call.
"Ma'am" the attendant calls me and I realise I'm at the front of the queue; I shake my head and move to one side. "Carla!" Michelle shrieks once more and I can feel her scowling down the phone. I gulp "what?" I ask innocently.
"Carla, have you even listen to a word I've said? Where the hell are you and Peter?"
I gulp again; she's going to kill me. "Southampton" I answer, the words escaping my mouth at super speed.
"Southamp….. Carla! I told you what a stupid idea, Leanne is so going to be after you two" she now sounds a little more concerned. She's not heard, or better still not seen.
"We don't have Simon" I blurt out further. Looking round I can no longer see Peter, great just what I need. Michelle has gone silent in my ear. I can feel my breathing become more intense and laced with panic. Peter, where has he gone? I quickly pace forward forgetting I still have Michelle on the line.
She begins mumbling away in my hear and she sounds confused but I don't have time for this right now. Before I can stop myself I call out "Peter!" several bystanders stop and stare it me like I'm crazy. I want to tell them I'm not but it would make me seem crazy. I hear a beep at my ear and my phone dies, great.
So now I, me the headstrong Mrs Connor is alone in Southampton, my gorgeous Peter Barlow missing. God he was only on the phone where the hell did he go. The station has suddenly got busy, I'm dehydrated and I feel fuzzy. Oh god Peter why have you done this to me! I had my business back up and running and my life sort of back on track minus all the 'Barlow family drama' and you decide to run away. I'm overwhelmed. The room begins to spin and it's all so Hollywood.