Key of Light (Key 1) - Page 68

“Good point.”

“You were involved with Jordan Hawke?” Zoe wanted to know. “Romantically?”

“It was years ago, when I was still young and stupid.” Dana unwrapped the bar, took a big bite. “Bad breakup, he took off. End of story. Bastard, creep, asshole.” She took another bite. “Okay, I’m done.”

“I’m sorry, Dana. If I’d known . . . Well, I don’t know what I’d have done. I need to see the painting.”

“Doesn’t matter. I’m over him. I’m so over him.” But she picked up the chocolate bar again, had another bite.

“I have to say something, and you might want the second emergency bar after I do. I can’t buy coincidence on this. I can’t rationalize it all. The three of us—and Flynn, your brother. Now Flynn’s two best friends. And one of those friends is a former lover of yours. That makes a very tight circle.”

Dana stared at her. “Just let me go on record as saying I really hate that part. Do you have another bottle of this wine?”

“I do. Rack above the fridge.”

“I’ll either walk home or call Flynn to pick me up. But I’m planning on being toasted by the time I leave.”

“I’ll drive you home,” Zoe offered. “Go ahead and get toasted—as long as you’re ready to leave by ten.”

“YOUR hair looks fabulous.” Swaying a little from trying to keep Dana company with wine consumption, Malory waved her fingers at Dana’s new hair.

The subtle blond highlights accented Dana’s dusky skin tone and dark eyes. And as a result of whatever els

e Zoe’s magic fingers had done, the long, straight sweep looked sleeker, glossier.

“I’ll have to take your word. I’m pretty blind.”

“Mine looks fabulous too. Zoe, you’re a genius.”

“Yes, I am.” Flushed with success, Zoe nodded at both of them. “Use that night cream sample I gave you for the next couple of days,” she told Malory. “Let me know what you think. Come on, Dana, let’s see if I can pour you into the car.”

“ ’kay. I really like you guys.” With a drunk and sentimental smile, Dana threw her arms around each of them. “I can’t think of anybody I’d rather be in the big mess with. And when it’s over, we should have hair and drinking nights once a month. Like a book club.”

“Good idea. ’Night, Mal.”

“You want some help with her?”

“Nope.” Zoe wrapped a supporting arm around Dana’s waist. “I’ve got her. I’m stronger than I look. I’ll call you tomorrow.”

“Me too! Did I tell you Jordan Hawke is a jerk?”

“Only about five hundred times.” Zoe guided Dana toward the car. “You can tell me again on the drive home.”

Malory closed the door, carefully locked it, then wove her way to the bedroom. Unable to resist, she stood in front of the mirror and experimented with the new cut, tossing her hair, tilting her head at different angles.

She couldn’t tell, not exactly, what Zoe had done, but whatever it was, it was right. Could be, she mused, it paid to keep her mouth shut for a change instead of directing the hairdresser’s every snip.

Maybe she should feel guilty and drink wine every time she visited the salon.

She could try the combination in other areas of her life. The dentist, ordering in restaurants, men. No, no, not men. She scowled at herself in the mirror. If you didn’t direct men, they directed you.

Besides, she wasn’t going to think about men. She didn’t need men. She didn’t even like men at the moment.

In the morning, she would spend an hour working on the puzzle of the key. Then she would dress, very carefully, very professionally. A suit, she decided. The dove gray with the white shell. No, no, the red. Yes, the red suit. Powerful and professional.

She raced to the closet, scanned her wardrobe, which was arranged precisely according to function and color. With the red suit in hand, she danced back to the mirror, held it in front of her.

“James,” she began, trying out a sympathetic yet aloof expression, “I’m so sorry to hear that The Gallery is going to hell in a handbasket without me. Come back? Well, I don’t know if that’s possible. I have several other offers. Oh, please, please, don’t grovel. It’s embarrassing.”

Tags: Nora Roberts Key Fantasy
Source: Copyright 2016 - 2024