“My shift at the coffee shop is almost over. I have to punch out.”
She starts laughing as she continues walking. “That’s a good one.”
She hits play on her podcast and the man continues talking about inspired asparagus. Again, whatever that means.
“Wait!” I call after her.
She gives me a fierce look as she whips her head around. “Are you interrupting me again when I’m getting my asparagus on?”
“I get a phone call!”
I think. At least according to Hollywood movies, I do.
She rolls her eyes.
“I’d like to call a lawyer.”
“Do you have a lawyer?”
“Fine,” she says with a sigh. “You can call your imaginary lawyer. Hopefully, he knows where your imaginary drug dealer is.”
“Real drug dealer,” I correct.
She frowns as she opens my cell and brings me to a phone.
“Ten minutes,” she says. “And don’t interrupt me again. My asparagi look like shit this season and I’m not in the mood.”
She slips her headphones on as I grab the phone book.
There’s only about ten percent of it left, but lucky for me, it’s the part with the lawyers. The pages are circled and all marked up with pencils. Too expensive is written over Barkley and Associates. A big X is marked over Brown, Wiley, & Norris.
I scan the page, looking for a lawyer in Cherry Falls. Yes!
Garret and Black Law Firm.
It’s just after six o’clock now, but hopefully, someone is still there.
I dial the number. My heart stops as it rings and rings and rings…
“Have a good night, Nathalie,” I call out as I grab the door handle. It’s just after six o’clock and I’m out of here. Nathalie is my cousin and the receptionist who stays until nine, answering the phones.
“Good night, Liam,” she answers just as the phone rings.
I pause with my hand on the handle, listening.
It’s after six. I should leave. But I don’t.
There’s not much waiting for me at home anyway. A frozen pizza. A lonely house. Crap on television that I never end up getting into.
I’ve always been heavily involved in work. That’s how I spend my time. Some people call me a workaholic, but that’s just a word lazy people like to call go-getters. They don’t know what it takes to run a successful firm and they couldn’t hack it for a day if they tried.
“I understand that, miss,” I hear Nathalie say into the phone. “But all of our lawyers have left for the night. I can direct one to you first thing in the morning… Ten AM… Miss, that is pretty common. Not many lawyers worth their salt work the night shift.”
With a sigh, I release the handle and pop my head back in.
“Who is it?” I mouth to her.
“Hold on, miss.” She hits the mute button and looks up at me. “Some local girl. Got arrested.”
“I don’t know. She’s a bit of a mess.”
I hold out my hand. “Let me talk to her.”
She holds the phone back, shaking her head at me. “You’re done for the day.”
“I’m in the office.”
“With your coat on.”
I sigh. “Will you give me the phone?”
“Will you go find a girlfriend instead of working all hours of the night?”
We stare each other down.
“I don’t want a girlfriend. I want to talk on that phone.”
She holds it back even more. “You’re thirty-four. It’s time to settle down.”
“And you’re my employee. It’s time to give me the freaking phone. Cousin or not, Nathalie, I’m still the boss in this office.”
She rolls her eyes and then hands it to me. “Don’t come crying to me when you’re an old bachelor who realized he wasted his entire life working.”
“Yeah, don’t worry, I won’t.”
I grab the phone and hit the mute button.
“Is this a lawyer?”
The sweet voice on the other line sends shivers racing through me.
I clear my throat, trying to focus. “Yes. This is Liam Garret.”
“Oh, Mr. Garret, I need your help.”
My heart pounds. My hand is clenched around the phone as I try to breathe. Blood rushes to my cock.
Her voice… It’s such a soft sweet sound. It’s candy for my ears. It’s nourishment for my soul.
I want to crawl through the phone line and emerge beside her. I want to wrap my arms around her in protection. I want to save her. I want to own her.
“I’ve been arrested,” she says. “But I didn’t do it.”
That’s what they all say, but with her, I believe it. No one can sound that pure and innocent and be guilty.
I need to have this girl. The urges pumping through me are unfamiliar and unexpected. They feel primal and barbaric like talking to this girl has awakened a deep dark part of me. A part of me that wants to possess this girl in every way.
“Are you okay?” Nathalie asks, looking at me funny. “You’re sweating.”
I loosen my collar as I will my voice to surface. It’s caught somewhere in my chest.