Here’s another installment from my 2006 NaNoWriMo project.
I have comments turned off, not because I don’t want your feedback, but because I can’t afford to think about revising at this point – I hope you understand. 🙂
Please remember, this is straight from my rough draft – I’ve done virtually no editing. 🙂
Thanks for reading and KEEP WRITING!
She slammed out of the car, entered the shop and stalked to the smiling, waiting girl behind the counter.
“I’d like a six-inch turkey and swiss on whole wheat bread please. A small amount of mayo, honey mustard, cucumbers, tomato and lettuce.”
The girl’s smile dropped at her clipped tone of voice “Of course.” She took out the bread, slapped on some turkey and swiss cheese and slid the sandwich down to the boy next to her.
Dalton walked up to the girl and smiled, silently apologizing to her for Brenna’s bad manners. The girl visibly relaxed and returned his smile.
Brenna rolled her eyes and watched the boy put the condiments on her sandwich. She wasn’t sure why she was so annoyed with Dalton. He was only doing his job. And she wasn’t sure why she felt reluctant to talk about Marcus. All she knew was that she wasn’t quite ready to do so.
She had reached the cashier and waited.
“Would you like chips and a drink?” another pimply-faced boy asked her.
“Uh … okay, that’ll be $3.69 then.”
“He’s paying.” She nodded her head toward Dalton.
Dalton walked up to them. “What’s the holdup?”
“I’m waiting for you to pay.”
“I’m …?” Dalton scowled and pulled out his wallet. “Fine, whatever.”
Brenna snatched up her sandwich, snagged a cup for her water and walked to a corner booth. She slid in as Dalton approached. She held out her cup.
“Water please, lots of ice.”
“What am I, your servant?” he snapped.
“You are if you want your questions answered,” she shot back calmly.
“You don’t have a choice, Ms. Foster,” his eyes began to darken with irritation.
She continued to hold out her cup. He continued to stare at her.
Seconds ticked by as they continued to look at one another.
He snorted in disgust. “Fine.” He snatched the cup from her fingers and headed to the soda fountain.
She smiled and unwrapped her sandwich. She was beginning to like him.
Dalton returned and dropped her cup of water in front of her. “Did anyone ever tell you you’re irritating?”
“Did anyone ever tell you you’re nosy?”
“That’s my job, missy.”
“Why are you so interested in my boyfriend? What has he got to do with anything at all? And don’t call me missy.” She sunk her teeth into her sandwich.
Dalton sighed and sat back in the booth. He crossed his arms and studied her before saying, “You really have no idea, do you.”
“Wha arliugliut,” she paused to chew before continuing, “what are you talking about?” She nabbed a napkin and dabbed the corners of her mouth.
“Marcus Waters is …” he paused. He really didn’t want to hurt this woman but he had to know if her relationship with Marcus was really over, for Jackie’s sake.
“Yeah? Marcus Waters is … an outlaw? A criminal? A crooked lawyer? A Republican? A law-abiding citizen? Is a …”
“Your … what?” A lump of turkey lodged in her throat. She began coughing.
“My brother-in-law.” He arched a brow as her coughing continued. “Take a drink of water.”
She began flapping her hands in front of her face.
“What, are you choking or something?” He scoffed.
Brenna wrapped her hands around her throat and her face began turning various shades of purple.
“Oh God, you ARE choking.” He scrambled out of his seat, grabbed a handful of her sweater and pulled her toward him. The heel of her boot caught on the back of the seat as she was exiting the booth and she fell into Dalton. He caught her and spun her around. Balling a hand into a fist, he placed it just under her diaphragm. Using the palm of his other hand, he wrapped it over his fist.
“Okay Brenna, let’s do this.” He jerked back against her abdomen in quick, staccato movements.
Brenna jumped like a rag doll against him with each thrust.
Finally, the bit of meat flew from her mouth and landed on their table.
She gasped for air. She turned around and hugged him to her. She couldn’t speak, so she squeezed her thanks instead.
He resisted the urge to hug her back. He could get used to this sort of gratitude. He released a nervous chuckle, both at his thoughts and at her public display, “My pleasure, little lady.” He helped her back into her seat. “Here, drink some water.”
She took a few small sips before resting her forehead in the palm of her hand. The other patrons in the shop began to settle back down once they realized the excitement was over.
“Geez, could I BE any more stupid?” Her chin was resting on her chest, her voice came out muffled and husky.
“Are you okay?”
“Yeah,” she paused to take in long, deep breaths. “I am now. You don’t truly appreciate the simple act of breathing until you can’t anymore.”
“I can imagine.”
“Sorry about that.”
He crossed his arms and grinned at her. “You’ll do anything to get out of being questioned, won’t you.”
“Oh, hardy-har-har,” she grumbled. “Eat your sandwich, it’s getting cold.”
He chuckled and picked up his roast beef. “Seriously, are you okay?”
“I’m good for another day at least.” She picked up her sandwich and eyed it doubtfully. “So, back to Marcus … he can’t be your brother-in-law; he’s not married.”