Everything & More Sample Sunday
Unedited and Subject to change. No release date scheduled yet. Enjoy!
“Are you at the airport?”
I just barely resisted the urge to roll my eyes at my baby sister, Noelle. She was the original reason for me taking two weeks off from Harmony Medical.
My baby sister was getting married.
It really came as no surprise since she and her fiancé, Kalvin, had been together since high school. They were truly made for each other.
We hadn’t had a great example of love growing up. Our parents had divorced when we were teens but the years they’d spent together had been awful. My dad was an arrogant, overbearing, mentally-abusive asshole while my mom had been a soft-spoken, weak-willed pushover.
They’d been a match made in hell.
“Are you listening to me?”
“Not at all,” I replied honestly, thanking the lady at the counter of the coffee shop when she handed me my iced coffee.
“I’m getting married this weekend. You’re not allowed to tune me out or ignore me.”
That was the Noelle I knew and loved.
Demanding as hell and spoiled rotten.
I had nobody to blame but myself.
Her and my brother, Chauncey, had both been oops babies, born less than a year apart when I was nine years old. Because of the turmoil of our parents' marriage, I practically raised both of them. Even though they were now adults and in their early twenties, I saw them both as my babies and I probably always would.
“I’m sorry, Queen Bee. What did you say?”
“I said, Kalvin just told me that you and West were on the same flight.”
I stopped in the middle of the walkway, ignoring the side eyes and nasty looks being thrown my way. “Excuse me? Who is on my flight?” Clearly I’d heard her wrong.
Her sigh was heavy and I could picture her perfect face contorting as she rolled her eyes, forever annoyed with me. “Oh, don’t start, Ru. It’s like three hundred people on the damn flight. The likelihood of y’all sitting together is low. ” I parted my lips to refute her statement before shutting up when her voice rose in pitch. “But if he is, you will be nice to him, Rumor Finley because he is the best man in my wedding and my fiancé's best friend. Whatever y’all have going on… please squash it for the week. Please.”
I rolled my eyes, not liking being told what to do. Especially if it concerned him. “There’s nothing going on, Noe. I’m always nice. It’s him. I never start it.”
“You sound five,” was her dry response, not believing a word I’d said.
“You sound like you’re about to get hung up on.”
Her voice became muffled and I started to ask her to repeat before hushing when I realized she was talking to someone in the background. I waited for a few seconds while she spoke to what sounded like her fiancé before telling me. “I have to go. Something’s going on with the caterer. See you later, sis. Love you.”
“Love you too.”
After hanging up, I arrived at the terminal nearly an hour before the flight was due to leave. There weren’t many seats left so I scanned the open space, searching for one that wasn’t next to someone who looked like they’d annoy me for the next hour.
My eyes moved over the middle seats before screeching to a halt when I met the glare of a familiar, scowling man.
Those damn bushy brows that I always wanted to smooth out met in the middle of his forehead, transforming his entire handsome, honey complexioned face into one of disdain. I’d lied when I told Noelle that West always starts with me because I made a beeline for him, smiling brightly because I knew it would only further annoy him.
We’d been around each other often and always, always rubbed one another the wrong way.
When I made it to him, I lowered my tote bag to the floor before swinging my wide hips past his face and sitting in the tiny seat right next to him. His fist flexed and his jaw clenched before he used one of his long legs to slide my bag in the tiny space separating our feet.
West was a tall man, even seated. But standing at six feet myself, I met his annoyed gaze head on and sipped from the straw in my caramel iced latte.
The staring contest went on and neither of us broke.
Finally, after flaring his nostrils, he turned to glare at the windows since it hadn't worked on me. “You gotta sit right here?” When I merely shrugged, his annoyance seemed to deepen. “All these fuckin’ empty seats.”
I grinned again at the mumble and he sighed, looking down at the phone in his hand.
Oh, this would be fun.
Getting a rise out of the stern-faced, stoic man had quickly become a favorite pastime of mine since his cousin and my sister started dating. He’d been away while they’d started dating in high school because of his military career. But after getting out a few years back, we were around one another more often and realized we mixed like oil and water.
He attempted to keep his distance while I purposely sought him out, eager to coax out any type of emotion from him. Even if it was negative and directed towards me.
Both of our heads jerked up to see a beautiful, petite woman of an indistinguishable race standing in front of us. I frowned, wondering if he knew her.
“Are you two like... together?”
When he only frowned and looked at her without saying a word, I sucked my teeth. At least his rudeness wasn’t exclusive to me. Everyone bore the brunt of West’s frigid coldness.
“Hell no.” I supplied, now eager to see how this would play out.
The woman ignored the negative vibes he radiated and sat in the empty seat on his other side. I bit back a giggle but he noticed, sending another glare at me as if I’d invited little miss oblivious to sit next to him.
It was entertaining watching her attempt to thaw the six foot something ice cube sitting next to me. His expression remained aloof as she flirted and tried to make small talk but he gave her absolutely nothing.
Not even a twitch of his unruly eyebrows.
It took several minutes but she seemed to get the hint. Her eyes shot to me and I shrugged, conveying that I didn’t understand him either.
She huffed and stood, moving back to her seat after sending one last annoyed glare in his direction.
“You could’ve said something to her, even if you weren’t interested.”
I thought he’d ignore me like he’d done to her but the time he took to roll his gaze to meet mine was painstakingly slow.
“I really wish you’d stop talking to me.”
I didn’t point out that he could ignore me like he’d done to her. Instead, I laughed and shook my head. “I wonder what she would’ve done if I’d told her we were together.”
If possible, his gaze turned even more frigid before roaming slowly over me from my head down to my toes. “As if I’d ever.”
I sucked my teeth at the blatant lie. “You already did once. Remember?”