He scanned the lobby and saw her immediately standing at the reception desk. He’d intended on sneaking up on her, but the receptionist recognized him and lit up.
“Welcome back Mr. McAllister!”
He saw Connie’s shoulders tense up. He nodded at the receptionist. “Orara, how are you and how is your family?”
She answered well to both and he nodded again saying, “I need to take Miss Johnson away from you for a moment.”
Orara waved her hand and said, “We were just finishing up! Feel free to take her!”
He cupped her elbow. “Can I speak to you for a moment Miss Johnson? In private.” As he turned and led her toward the conference rooms, he leaned down and whispered in her ear. “Nice try Barb. Did you really think you could just slink out of the house and I of all people wouldn’t notice?”
Instead of answering his question, she said, “I’m surprised any of the staff even knows that you’re a McAllister.”
“Of course they know who I am,” he shot back.
He knew she was seething, but that was just fine with him, because he was just as ticked off.
They entered the conference room and she immediately jerked her arm away from him.
“How dare you?” she said through clenched teeth. “You have the nerve to show up here, while I’m working, for what? Why are you here Andrew?”
“I think you know why I’m here Constance.” He crossed his arms. “I never would have figured you to be someone to run scared.”
“I’m not running from anything.”
“You’re running from what happened last night. You wouldn’t even let me apologize.”
“Look, don’t waste your breath on an apology Andrew. It was just a kiss. It happened, it was a mistake. Let’s just forget it.”
Sometimes he wanted to shake the woman. Instead he just said, “Fine, consider it forgotten.”
He turned to leave then looked back at her. “Have you eaten?”
She stood there, looking confused by his seemingly random question.
“What?” she asked.
“You were in such a hurry to get away this morning, I imagine you didn’t have time to eat.”
She shook her head. “Why do you care Andrew?”
“I’d rather not have you passing out while you’re here. Pops would never let me hear the end of it.”
At the mention of his grandfather, he noticed an odd expression flash across her face, then she seemed to relent.
“No, I haven’t eaten yet.”
“I’ll be back around noon to pick you up for lunch.”
“Just like that? You don’t ask? You just come in here barking orders like some Neanderthal.”
He blew out a frustrated breath. “Constance, I’ll be back here around noon. Would you please allow me to pick you up and take you to get some food?”
“Now that wasn’t so hard, was it?”
“Constance?” She was pushing his buttons again.
“Fine. Yes Andrew, I’ll be ready. Don’t worry, you won’t need to club me over the head and drag me off to lunch.”
He shook his head and turned to leave. “See you later.”
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