I tossed the old newspaper onto the coffee table and tried to keep my eyes off her bedroom door, but I couldn’t help staring. Seven-thirty.
Any minute now.
The morning sun shot through the pine trees in our front yard, making jagged needle-like shadows on the wall behind me. That was where I should concentrate. Might be a good photo there somewhere.
But no, the bedroom door had my full attention.
I rubbed my hand over my still unshaven face and waited. With a quiet twist, the doorknob turned. I jumped from the couch and stepped to the bar in the kitchen, feigning interest in my soggy cereal. The door opened and he came out, his gelled hair sticking out in unruly spikes. He was tucking his sports shirt into his jeans.
“Oh, Andrew. Hey, man,” he said to me, grinning.
My stomach turned to steel, and I bit back the smart-mouth retort that fired to my lips.
He looked out the window, and his smile stretched even wider. “Nice day, huh? Well, I’d best be off.”
He moved across the room in three long strides and left the house. My gaze shifted back to the bedroom door. Mom emerged, wiggling her hips to straighten her short skirt.
“Andy, honey, would you make me a bit of decaf?”
“You’re going to be late.”
“I know, but Boss-Man won’t care now, will he?” She patted her poofed-up hair and gave a throaty giggle.
I grabbed a clean mug, filled it with water, and stuck it in the microwave.
“You going in to work today?” she asked, settling on a bar stool.
“Yeah, at nine.”
She reached over to pat my cheek. “Don’t forget it’s summer. I want you to do some major goofing-off.”
Whose mother says that? None that I knew. “I know, Mom. I will.”
I had my reasons for loving work. Especially now. Granted, it was running a cash register at Sue’s Seaport Shoppe, but there were perks.
“They ever hire a new salesgirl?”
I nodded, and quickly looked away. All I needed was Mom to figure out why I suddenly loved my job.
“Tourists are crawling around everywhere this week,” she continued. She ran her hands down each of her shoulders and hugged herself. “Hmm, maybe I should do some crawling around, too. You know, troll the male tourists.”
The microwave dinged, and I took out the hot water. “Gross. Stop talking like that. Gives people the wrong idea.”
Actually, it would give people the right idea, but I didn’t say so.
I grabbed the decaf off the shelf and spooned some granules into her cup. After a swift stir, I handed it to her.
She pursed her lips and blew into the mug. “Pity is, you remind me of your dad. When are you going to start living a little?”
As soon as Daniela Rosen says yes.
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