And we continue our Round Robin Short Story series, "A Delicious Dalliance," with a section from Kimberly Packard.
The smoky, sexy voice caressed Seven’s ear. It was a voice that belonged to a Victoria’s Secret model, one that woke up with the right amount of makeup smudge under her eye. The type of voice that sounded like it’s been smoking since it was a teenager but without the stained teeth to prove it. It was also the voice belonging to the owner’s leggy daughter.
“Uh, hi,” Sev said, trying not to imagine Alex curled up alongside his boss’s daughter. “Does Chef Alex Laurent work at this restaurant?”
A boredom-laced “Oui” blew through the line.
“Great, I’d like to make a reservation for tonight.”
The bombshell paused so long that Sev thought she lost the connection. “I have an opening at eight. But why only one, Chef Laurent’s food is for lovers, do you have one, no?”
Actually, I have two, but that would make for an awkward dinner-time conversation. “Eight is great,” Sev confirmed, ignoring the woman’s suggestion to bring a lover, preferring to meet one there instead. When asked for a name, Saffron came out of her mouth before she could stop herself. She should have given her name as Seven. He would looked at the reservation list and known she was coming. But, she knew why she didn’t. If he knew she was coming, he would have too much time to prepare for the argument she deserved.
Thankfully, Brad was nowhere to be found when she rushed by her apartment after work to prepare for dinner. She showered, shaved and primped in record speed, only slowing down long enough to put serious thought into which little black dress Alex would find most appealing. It was the impulse buy from Paris that won out against the others. The one that she bought in her still post-orgasmic bliss from her night with Alex that even though, at the time, she knew he’d never see her in it, she bought it in hopes that he would. The short dress sashayed mid-thigh and the impossibly tall red heels only accented her tanned, tone calves. Eat your heart out, Chef.
The restaurant was bustling when she arrived. The owner’s daughter barely gave Sev a glance when she checked in and lazily led her to a small, claustrophobic table seated too close to the bathroom. This must be why she got a reservation so easily, no one wanted to sit at the table where the sound of toilets flushing drowned the piped-in Spanish guitar.
Deep breath, Sev. You’re just having a nice dinner by yourself, waiting for the man of your dreams to appear from the kitchen. To ease her nerves, she picked a nice bottle of tempranillo from the menu and let the earthy sweet juice flood her mouth and warm her throat, imagining her whole body relaxing as nectar of the gods radiated from her stomach. With each bite she took that evening, she imagined it to be a nibble on his ear, or a lick on his neck. By the final bite, she wasn’t sure if she was ready to explode from satiation or lust.
“I’d love to meet the chef and compliment him on dinner,” she told her server after he poured her third glass of wine. The young man curtly nodded and disappeared into the kitchen. Sev’s eyes fixated on the swinging wooden door as her hands instantly smoothed her hair and her tongued licked away any traces of his food from her lips.
Just as the door to the kitchen swung open, a torso blocked her view. Her angry eyes flicked up, her drunken lips pursed to tell the stranger to get the hell out of her way when her jaw went slack at the sight of Brad standing before her with a single peony in his hand.