-Chapter One-

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 It was the coldest day of the year so far and the streets lay bare and empty, people too cold to leave their houses or hurrying from one shop to another to get out of the freezing breeze that whipped at peoples skin.

The silence seemed to press in on the shops in the small town of Saffron Walden, just north of London. Cars were lined up on the streets, people too afraid to brave the icy roads, that were now covered in a layer of snow and the path, once a concrete sturdy surface was now covered in sludgy ice that was almost too slippery to walk on.

The usual inhabitants of the quaint little town had all seemed to filter into coffee shops, restaurants and cosy shops that’s heaters were blearing out causing electrical bills to rocket.

This of course meant it was a roaring trade for the restaurants and coffee shops that were offering beverages that would warm a customer up in no time.

So although the weather outside was quite miserable and to go out was a death wish, the owners of the bakery on the corner of the high street thought this was the best day of the year. Hot drinks and hot pastries were selling like nobody’s business and all in all it was turning into a good day for the pair that owned it.

The two owners were an odd pair, not your usual bakery owners if you were to think of one. No, these two were young, fresh out of school and quite naive to the world and it’s workings. The boy who worked the cash register was loud and obnoxious at first glance, his Irish accent filling the room as he greeted the customers. Blond hair styled in a quiff and trusting blue eyes that had customers trusting their young cashier and a booming laugh that was quite a homely feeling to those who visited often. This boys name was Niall.

Out back however hidden away with the oven and ingredients was another boy, taller and quiet but with a certain cheekiness that made the customers love him when he came out with the freshly made cakes and breads. Brown curls always tucked into a hat and wide careful green eyes with intent for perfection in all he created. This boys name was Harry.

In general, Harry felt his creations were quite something and with the regulars they received the customers seemed to think so too.

He was doubtful on many occasions and got Niall to test out his samples with not so much as a protest on the other boys side, because whatever Harry made was never terrible. On the other hand, Harry was never truly happy with his work until he’d had at least one compliment from a customer, when Niall came through the back with compliments to the chef, well, it’d make Harry’s day brighter and make him feel he’d accomplished something.

With the snow falling in torrents outside and people streaming into the bakery wrapped up in scarfs, hats and gloves. When lunchtime arrived with a fresh blizzard of snow, Harry showed his face from the back room to be greeted with a room full of cold looking builders and two boy gathering their attention.

Harry walked over to Niall who was stood leaning over the counter watching the scene before him with curious wide eyes.

“I think it’s a business meeting” He whispered as Harry put down a tray of freshly baked bread down on the counter. Copying Nialls stance he too placed his elbows on the counter and leant closer to the throng of builders.

“Why are they having a business meeting here, wouldn’t it be easier to have it wherever they’re building?” Harry asked picking up a piece of bread and tearing it in half handing the slightly bigger half to Niall who took it without looking. They both tore some off and ate it, chewing slowly as they watched the crowd in front of them, who’d yet to actually buy anything.

It wasn’t unusual for the coffee shop to attract people on business meetings because it was a calm and homely location in the centre of the town, it’s décor was welcoming in it’s Tudor styled house with beams, Harry had loved the old look of the building so when renovating had tried to keep as much character as he could, including the original bread oven built into the chimney breast. He liked that the most.

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