Chasing Vivi(7)

By: A.M. Hargrove



“Absolutely not. The entire building is aware of it.”

“That bad, huh?”

“Yeah. Sorry. Honestly, Prescott, if you were the average Joe, no woman would look twice at you.”

No wonder Vivi didn’t want to go out with me. I probably smell like I cohabitate with Jack Daniel’s.

“Message received.”

“I’m worried about you. Do you think …”

“What?”

She crams her hands in her pockets and says, “You know … that you may have a drinking problem.”

My brows leap toward the sky. “No. Honestly, Lynn, I can stop anytime.”

With a determined look, she says, “Prove it. Stop coming to work stinking like bourbon. If you don’t, you’re going to need rehab one day.”

“I know. I promise to lay off. Here’s the thing. I get to thinking about him and before I know it, I’m grabbing a drink.”

“Well, grab something else because he’s not worth your time. If you don’t slow down, Prescott, I might consider resigning.”

“What? You’d quit?”

“Yes, I would. I don’t want to stand by and watch you ruin your life over some worthless piece of shit.”

“So what you’re saying is if I don’t straighten up, you’ll resign.”

“Pretty much. I’ll give you a pass here and there, but I’m tired of telling you to brush your teeth every morning. I’m not your mom and you’re not five. It’s pretty simple. Start behaving and you get to keep me as your admin.”

I stop walking. “Oh, come on, Lynn. You can’t possibly mean that. Where else can you work that would give you the salary, benefits, extra perks, and hours that you have with me? Besides, I spoil the shit out of you.”

“True, but I cover for your drinking way too much lately, and I’m not willing to lie for you anymore.” She grabs my arm and we walk again.

By now, we’re almost at the restaurant and I have to give some thought to this. “Can we finish this inside?”

“Sure.”

We walk through the door and a beautiful sight is moving toward us. It’s Vivi, but she’s with another man. As she closes in on us, the sun streams through the door, glinting off her honeyed hair. It takes all my self-restraint not to grab her, plow my hands into that damn hair of hers, and taste every bit of her plump mouth.

“Prescott,” she calls out to my astonishment and satisfaction. After our earlier meeting, I wasn’t sure she’d acknowledge me at all.

“Vivi, this is a nice surprise.” I’m even more shocked when she grabs and hugs me. The scent of flowers invades my nostrils, and I don’t want to stop inhaling. I return her embrace and am disappointed when it ends. Her reaction to me is a complete one-eighty from this morning, and I can’t help but question it. But I’m not going to say something to screw it up either.

Then she introduces the guy she’s with as her boss—some dude named Joe. He stumbles over himself to shake my hand like I’m some sort of celebrity. He’s a goofy shit with wavy, greased-back hair and way too much cologne.

“Nice to meet you. This is my executive admin, Lynn Cochran. Lynn, this is Vivienne Renard. She and I went to Crestview Academy together. We’re old friends.”

“Ah, it’s so great to meet you. You’ll have to tell me some stories about him in his younger days,” Lynn says.

“Oh, I’m not sure you want to know,” Vivi says, winking.

“Now that’s where you’re wrong. I can imagine how he worked his way around the ladies.”

“Let me say this. He had most of them wrapped around his homework binder, not to mention his letter jacket,” Vivi says.

Interesting comment about the homework binder.

“All right, you two, stop telling stories about me. I’m standing right here.”

They share a laugh and then Vivi says, “Well, we better be going. Back to work, you know. Don’t want my boss to get the wrong impression.” She lets out a squeaky laugh.

“Hey, Vivi, give me a call soon, will you?”

“Sure. Nice meeting you, Lynn.”

But I get the impression she has no intention of ever calling.

Her boss, what’s his name, nearly trips over his feet in his exuberance to say goodbye.

As we’re being seated, Lynn says, “Wow. Were those the kind of girls you went to high school with? She’s gorgeous.”

“Yeah, isn’t she, though?” Vivi is stunning. Why hadn’t I ever noticed that about her back in the day? Her large silvery gray eyes and that luscious mouth of hers should’ve told me something, even back then. I was probably too busy being distracted by other girls eager to get their greedy hands on my dick. Vivi wasn’t one of them. Too bad. We could’ve had some fun.

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