“Your mommy just doesn’t know how good she has it.”
Brad slid little Connor into his highchair as the tot happily gnawed on a teething ring and gurgled in agreement. His hands now free, Brad turned to open the kitchen cabinet. “Now let’s see what we have for munchies.” He pulled out some assorted boxes. “Yes sir. It’s just us guys for the day. Cheerios?”
He placed the bright yellow box on the high chair tray and poured himself a cup of coffee from the pot he’d made that morning. He sat down and looked at the list Kyra had made for him. It didn’t look like much. Why did she have to make everything sound so tough? This week was going to be like a vacation.
He grabbed a pen. “Let’s see, buddy. What projects should we do today after we finish Mommy’s list?”
Connor responded with a happy cheer as he banged the open cereal box against his tray. Tiny oat rings went flying like confetti on New Year’s Eve.
“Whoa…easy big fella.” Using the side of his foot, Brad scooted the cereal under the highchair. “If you wanted something else, all you had to do was ask for it.”
* * *
“Now you’re asking for it.”
Kyra shirked back, letting out a yelp as a man popped his head over the top of the cubicle. Her heart jumped at the sight of his scruffy goatee, and the greenish tattoo that crept across his shaved head and down the side of his neck like moss. He held up a large rubber band, stretching it back with the other hand slingshot-style.
Oh my gosh. She lifted her hands in defense. I’m working next to Travis Barker.
“Hey.” His Rambo-like posture eased. “Where’s Syd?”
Feeling only slightly less imperiled, she lowered her hands. “I…uh…don’t know. I’m just a temp.”
He nodded sagely. “Right. You’re probably sworn to secrecy.” Much to her alarm, he lowered an arm in her direction. “I’m Kruger.”
Her stomach knotting, she scooted her chair forward and lifted out of it just enough to shake his hand. She marveled at the finely inked dragon that wound its way up his bicep and into the arm hole of his grungy tank, while trying to ignore the dime-size cork that plugged a hole in his earlobe.
“Hello…Kruger.” She stumbled over the word, not knowing if she should put a ‘Mr.’ in front of it. “I’m Kyra.”
“Nice to meet you, Kyra the temp.” His easy manner seemed out of sync with the rest of his appearance. “Hope Syd’s ok. Hey, they didn’t arrest her, did they?”
“What?” She jolted. “No. I mean, I wouldn’t know.”
A smirk played across his lips. “Oh, right.” He twisted a hand over his mouth, key-style. “I guess I shouldn’t be surprised she didn’t make it in today, after all that.”
She nodded, going along with his apparent belief that she was in on the regular girl’s personal business. She fingered the top paper on the stack in front of her, pretending she knew what to do with it.
“I guess you better get to work.” Kruger pointed a sharp-looking finger down at her desk. Syd was way behind.”
She managed a wan smile. Great. Suddenly, wiping up Kool-Aid off her kitchen floor held a remarkable appeal.
To Be Continued
Friday, June 15, 2012
Photo Credit: FreeDigitalPhotos.net