"Can't be any more awful than that bozo you married," Grandma said. "Only one way to go after that fiasco."
She was right. My short lived marriage had been a fiasco.
There was a knock on the door, and we swiveled our heads to look down the hall. "Eddie Kuntz!" I gasped.
"Yep," Grandma said. "That's his name. He called up here looking for you, and so I invited him to dinner."
"Hey," Eddie said through the screen.
He was wearing a gray short-sleeved shirt open half-way down his chest, pleated slacks and Gucci loafers, no socks. He had a bottle of red wine in his hand. "Hello," we said in unison.
"Can I come in?"
"Sure you can come in," Grandma said. "I guess we don't leave handsome men standing at the door."
He handed the wine to Grandma and winked. "Here you go, cutie." Grandma giggled. "Aren't you the one."
"I almost never shoot people," I said. "Almost never."
"Me too," he said. "I hate unnecessary violence."
I took a step backward. "Excuse me I need to help in the kitchen."
My mother hurried after me. "Don't even think about it!"
"You know what. You were going to sneak out the back door."
"He's not my type."
My mother started filling serving dishes with food from the stove. Mashed potatoes, green beans, red cabbage. "What's wrong with him?"
"He's got too many buttons open on his shirt."
"He could turn out to be a nice person," my mother said.
"You should give him a chance. What would it take? And what about supper? I have this nice chicken that will go to waste. What will you eat for supper if you don't eat here?"
"He called grandma cutie!"
My mother had been slicing up the chicken. She took a drumstick and dropped it on the floor. She kicked it around a little, picked it up and put it on the edge of the plate.
"There," she said, "we'll give him this drumstick."
"And I have banana cream pie for desert," she added to seal the bargain. "So you want to make sure you stay to the end."
Be still my heart.
Copyright © 1998 by Evanovich, Inc. Reprinted with the permission of St. Martin's Press, Inc.
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No Man's Land
by Simon Tolkien
Inspired by the experiences of his grandfather, J. R. R. Tolkien, during World War I.
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