Angelic Paranoia

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[Sarah Jane Adventures] A Lovely Bloom
Wednesday 1st January 2014

Rating: PG
Beta: hhertzof
Summary: Gita might have just what Sarah is looking for.
Notes: For dbskyler.

When she heard the door open, Gita looked up from the arrangement of roses she was working on and grinned broadly. "Sarah! It's so lovely to see you." She put the flowers down carefully, not wanting to damage them in her excitement, but it was so unusual to see Sarah in her shop that she rushed out from behind the counter to greet her neighbour. "What can I do for you?"

Sarah smiled, but leaned away from Gita a little. "I'm looking for a flower."

"Well, you've come to the right place." Gita laughed. "I've got all sorts of flowers here, all of them guaranteed to bring colour and a beautiful scent to whatever home it's going to." She was curious as to just who Sarah wanted flowers for and hoped Sarah might give her a clue.

Sarah's smile turned a little strained. "I think it ended up in your shop by mistake."

Gita sighed. "People do sometimes accidentally leave the odd thing. And occasionally I have delivery men who've got confused. Once they even tried to give me a box of lingerie, can you imagine?" She elbowed Sarah in the ribs and laughed.

"It belonged to a friend of mine." Sarah took a step back, not joining in with Gita's laughter. "He's lost it and it's very precious to him."

Gita's eyes lit up. "A rare breed perhaps." Sarah might not let her keep it, whatever it was, but even just to say she'd had it in her shop would enough.

"Perhaps." Sarah shrugged. "I'm not really sure. I don't know much about flowers."

That admission stopped Gita from relating the story she'd heard from a friend of a friend who photographed a Kadupal Flower on holiday in Sri Lanka. Sarah wouldn't appreciate just how amazing that was, so she stuck to business. "If you tell me what it looks like, I'll tell you if I've seen it."

Sarah looked sheepish. "I'm not really sure." She looked around the shop, at the yellow, red and pink roses along one one, and the carnations and chrysanthemums creating colour by the counter. Gita followed her gaze. It would be hard to find one that stood out among that lot, when they didn't know what they were looking for.

"Why don't you ring and ask him?" Gita suggested brightly. "Meanwhile, I'll put the kettle on and we can have a cup of tea."

Sarah hesitated for a moment before she smiled and said, "Tea sounds lovely. And I'll give him a call now." She pulled her phone out.

Gita busied herself making tea and using up the last of the milk - she must remember to pop down the road and pick some up otherwise she'd have customers here for a while she couldn't offer tea to and what a disaster that would be! They might even go and find another florist. She didn't mean to overhear, but she thought she heard Sarah calling her friend on the phone 'Mr Smith'. She shrugged. Maybe he was very old fashioned. Rani might know - she'd ask her this evening.

When she brought out two cups of tea she thought she heard a whirring sound, which stopped just as she stepped through the door. Perhaps it had come from next door - sometimes she wasn't sure what went on in that shop.

Sarah was peering at some of the lilies along one wall and didn't seem to have heard Gita enter, so she said, "Here we are, two teas."

Sarah turned and smiled, taking one of the mugs from Gita. "Thank you. He described something that looked like a lily, but not quite the same as the other lilies."

"That's a bit vague." Gita sipped at her tea before coming out around the counter to stand beside Sarah and gaze at the lilies herself. "Couldn't he describe it any better than that?"

Sarah shook her head, looking apologetic. "He was in a rush."

It took more than that to get Gita down. "Oh, well, we'll look through the lilies and see if we can find it." She started at the front of the display and had just thought she saw something that didn't look right when the door opened.

The man who entered was dressed from head to toe in leather, including his knee high boots, and was still wearing his motorcycle helmet. It was tinted too, so she couldn't see what he looked like under it.

Gita left Sarah to continue the search on her own while she greeted her new customer. "Good afternoon." She smiled, even though she couldn't see his expression. "What can I do for you?"

"I want a flower." The voice was low and there was a hint of an accent Gita couldn't place.

"You're in luck, you've come to a flower shop." She laughed, but it faded out as the customer stayed standing stock still. She coughed. "Any flower in particular?"

His answer sounded like a garbled selection of consonants and Gita was about to ask him to repeat it when Sarah gasped from somewhere behind her. If this was the name of the flower she could see why Sarah couldn't remember the name. Gita looked round and gave her a reassuring smile. She wasn't about to let this customer get hold of someone else's flower. "I'm terribly sorry, I sold the last one this morning. Have you tried the florist just by the entrance to the shopping centre?"

"No. I know it is here." The man stepped forward and loomed over her. He must be nearly seven feet tall!

She refused to be intimidated in her own shop though and she continued to smile. "If that's the only flower you want then I'm afraid you'll just have to look elsewhere." Gita took a firm grip of the man's arm and shepherded him to the door. She thought she saw a hint of green in the gap between his jacket and his glove as she released his arm, but it must have been a sleeve that looked a lot like green skin. Probably some new fashion. "Thank you for visiting Bloomin' Lovely."

She shut on the door on him and locked it, just in case.

When she turned her back on him she saw that Sarah looked scared. "Don't you worry." She went over to her and patted her on the shoulder. "I deal with unhappy customers from time to time. They just have to learn that the customer isn't always right." She went back to her tea as the customer slammed on the door with his fist. Gita made a shooing motion with one hand and he gave up and stormed off.

"I'd give him a few minutes to get well away before you leave," Gita suggested. "Now, let's find this flower."

Sarah shook her head. "You know, I think it might be safest here for a while." She pulled a lily from behind her back and passed it to Gita.

Gita smiled. She was impressed Sarah had been able to spot it, especially with her lack of knowledge of flowers. "I'll guard it with my life," she promised.

After Sarah left, she could have sworn she heard more of those whirring noises, but when she looked out there was nothing there. She shook her head, telling herself she was imagining things and went to check on the lily, which was blooming lovely in the back office.




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