“You look amazing,” he said.
“You don’t look so bad yourself.”
“Ready to go then?”
“How do you like French food? I thought we might go to Le Sheron down by the waterfront if that’s okay with you.”
Travis helped her into the truck and did his best not to be too distracted by the bare leg extending from beneath her dress as she sat next to him. He really needed to get a grip on his hormones. They were in overdrive tonight, and he didn’t want to come off like some sort of dirty old man with only one thing on his mind.
“So, what have you been up to since you regained consciousness?” he teased.
“Very funny. I’m so embarrassed about that.”
“Don’t be. Stuff happens to us all. You said the doctor got you sorted out, though, right?”
“Yes. I’ll be fine from now on. What about you? You said you started a new job.”
“Ah, avoiding my question and asking your own. Okay. Yeah. It’s temporary, but it pays well. I took a leave from the bar for the next six months and will hopefully have enough to start up my own little business when I’m done.”
“Well, the woman I’m working for is a bit of a handful. If I can manage to keep my mouth shut or not walk out for that long, I’ll be golden.”
“She’s that bad? Did she make you help her pick out lingerie?” she asked.
“Lingerie? What? No. Why would I do that?” he asked, genuinely puzzled.
“That’s what she was saying when I saw you in town. Something about having to get to a lingerie fitting.”
“Oh. Yeah. No. She’s an actress. She had to get to her fitting with the wardrobe people.”
“An actress? Here?”
“Yeah. It’s a bit hush-hush, I think, though I’ve seen some reports that have leaked about it.”
“Oh!” she squealed. “That slasher film they are filming down in the south woods!”
“Wait. You aren’t working for Vivianne Demonte, are you?”
“The one and only,” he groaned.
“Not really. She’s not exactly a pleasant person.”
“Not really rude—just demanding and a bit fake.”
“I’m surprised. She always seems like such a sweet person in interviews and stuff. I guess she’s a good actress.”
Travis scoffed but didn’t elaborate.
“Anyway, enough about her. You didn’t tell me what you’ve been up to since I saw you last.”
“Not much. Working and trying to find my brother.”
“Find your brother? The one I met at your parents?”
“Big Mike? Right. I forgot he said he talked to you.”
“Yeah. He’s been gone for several days. He has some ... problems. I guess the police don’t really care and my parents are mad at him, so I’ve been trying to find him on my own. I’m done now, though. Nowhere else I can look for him, not alone.”
“What do you mean?”
“Mike runs with a pretty shady crowd. It’s just not safe for me to go nosing around in their business. Ya know?”
“Yeah. I know. What’s he into?”
“Yeah. Folks that run with shady people are always into something that will end badly.”
“Right. He drinks and I’m pretty sure he’s using again.”
“Drugs? What kind?”
“I don’t know. I saw him slipping something in his mouth the other night before he left my house, so maybe just pills or maybe harder stuff. I have no idea. He zonked out on something and crashed into the corner of our parents’ house. I had to take him to the doctor.”
“Yeah. Anyway, enough about Mike. I’ve done all I can do to find him. He’ll turn up when he decides to face my father’s wrath.”
“I hope so,” Travis told her, wishing there was something more he could say or do to help, but knowing that guys like Mike did whatever they wanted and left nothing but misery in their wake.CHAPTER FOURTEENKat
Kat couldn’t believe she’d told Travis so much about everything. He was just too easy to talk to about things. He didn’t seem judgmental at all and at least gave the impression that he was empathetic. They dropped the topic of Mike and instead began talking about their own futures.
“So, this money you’re saving up to do your own thing. What is it that you want to do?”
“Why would I laugh?”
“It’s just not what you hear from a typical Alpha.”
“I have a feeling you are anything but a typical Alpha. It might be what I like about you most.”
He glanced sideways at her for a moment and smiled before turning back to the road in front of them.
“I want to sculpt, so I’d like to use the money to get me started and then try to sell some of my stuff. You know, give it a few months, and then if I see it’s going nowhere, maybe just go back to the bar or something else.”
“Sculpt? Like Greek statues and such?”
“Oh, no. Not like that at all. I am a pretty good welder, and I love how some of the found object sculptures look. You know, like Penny Hardy’s stuff.”