Romy laughed, taking a step back from their enthusiasm. They hammered him with questions for a couple minutes, which he laughingly answered for them.
“Really, I do need to go. My partner’s waiting downstairs to take me to the airport. Sorry, love. I hate to go.” He gave her another kiss, much less platonic than the last one. “God, it’s going to suck being gone.”
“Be careful,” she cautioned in a whisper. “Keep your head down and don’t do anything stupid.”
“I promise,” he countered, playing his hand over his heart. Giving her one last kiss, he left, whistling happily. He waved from the elevator as it closed.
“Oh, my God, he’s so adorable!” Joni hopped up and down as Tracy squealed.
“Does he have a brother?” Dido wanted to know.
“Two, Chas and Dexter. Yes, they are both just as cute. Now, back to work, girls!” She clapped her hands like an elementary school teacher.
The other girls cleared out, but Bonnie hung around. “He said partner, what is he? A cop or something?”
“Yeah,” Saige replied but didn’t clarify.
She couldn’t tell Bonnie she didn’t really know what Romy did and what she did know could get them all killed.
“He works undercover. It’s all very mysterious.”
“Adds to his allure, huh?”
“I guess. He doesn’t need any help with that,” she grinned. “He’s over six feet of allure. I didn’t think it was possible to be so happy, Bon.”
“So, brothers, huh?”
“Chas is two years older, Dexter’s a year or so younger. Cute guys, very sweet.”
“Introduce me sometime, huh?”
“Love to. Now I really do have to get back to work or Brodie’s going to fuss at me.”
“He won’t fuss. He’s occupied.”
Brodie was on the phone, talking earnestly to someone. The call must have come in while she was on break. He looked annoyed so she stuck her head in his office.
“Where have you been?” He mouthed angrily.
She mimed drinking something. He nodded, not quite furious and not directed at her. He made yapping motions with his hand. Whoever it was wouldn’t stop talking long enough for him to say much. The conversation consisted of a lot of words being cut off and non-committal grunts.
“Right. Mr. Stevens—” He sighed with his hand over the phone. “Call me,” he whispered. “Now, call me now!”
She dialed her cell phone and let it ring through to his desk on another line.
“I’ve got another call coming in. I’m sorry, I have to take this. Right. Goodbye.” He hung up, slamming the phone down. “God, I hate that man! If he calls again today, I’m not available. In fact, if he calls again this week, I’m out of town.”
“Why do you keep working with him if he’s such a dick?”
“His health clubs bring in good money. But Ches is about ready to cut him loose. No other firm in town will work with him. He’s impossible. I’m a patient man, but he’s pushing it.”
“Face it, Brodie, you need to get laid.”
“Yeah, no shit? I had my hopes shattered recently.” He grinned, motioning her in. “So, who’s the better kisser?”
Saige wrinkled her nose, pursed her lips and pretended to think about her reply. Brodie waited patiently, putting his feet up on his desk.
“Which answer gets me lunch on the boss?”
He chuckled, waving her out. “I’ll buy lunch if you go pick it up. So, who?”
“You want the truth or a beautifully phrased deception?”
“Wasn’t me, huh?” He looked slightly crestfallen.
“You’re an amazing kisser, Brodie. Romy had an unfair advantage. His kisses led to an avalanche of devastating multiple orgasms.”
Brodie burst out laughing, tossing a piece of balled up paper at her. “Get out and go back to work!” He chuckled, shaking his head.
At lunchtime, she stopped by to see Mrs. Cross for a few minutes. Julia was fine and had just finished cooking a brisket. Despite her offers to lunch, Saige declined because she had to get back to work. Brodie ordered Chinese and she stopped to pick it up on her way back to the office.
Stan joined them for their meal. It was the first time Saige had seen him that day. He smiled when he saw her, then stopped in his tracks, eyes flickering suspiciously at Brodie.
“What’s going on here? Didn’t we discuss this?”
Saige shut the door, shoving Stan in a chair before he got too upset.
Brodie held his hands up like Stan had a gun on him. “Wasn’t me, I swear. I’d love to be responsible. Believe me,” he added quietly.
“So, anyone I know?”
“British fellow named Romy Cross. Do you know him?”
“Yeah! He’s that lunatic rugby player. His team damn near killed us. He has these two insane brothers. They all three work the field like refrigerators on crack.”
“You guys play rugby?”
“Not that often anymore,” Stan replied, rubbing his left shoulder. “It’s brutal. Brodie played for quite awhile. They begged him to stop.”
Stan pointed at Brodie with his chopsticks. “Imagine that coming at you top speed across the field. Then imagine that hits you right here,” he pointed at Saige’s hips. “And knocks you seventeen feet in the air before you land on your head. It’s like getting hit by a Hummer.”
“Hmm, I imagine that would hurt some.”
“Yeah, some. Course he’d never do that to you. You’re a little bitty girl. There’s only one reason he’d tackle you.”
“And it would be much gentler,” Brodie interrupted before Stan’s penchant for saying the wrong thing got them in trouble.
© 2012 Dellani Oakes