Arrangements

Published June 3, 2011 by Christa Maurice

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Want to start at the beginning?

 

 

The next morning, Colleen puttered around cleaning the kitchen in her bathrobe waiting for the phone to ring. When it did, she stared at it for a minute before picking it up. It was either going to be Mike or Dan, she just wasn’t sure which one she wanted more. She looked through the kitchen door at the flowers on the table.

Hello?”

Hello, can I speak to Colleen?”

This is Colleen.”

Hi, it’s Dan. Scott Jackson’s partner.”

I guessed that. You don’t sound anything like my mom.” Colleen bit her tongue. He probably wouldn’t like sarcasm this early in the morning.

He chuckled. The sound was knee melting. “I hope not. Listen, I was wondering if you were free tonight.”

Tonight?” she repeated.

If you’re busy we can arrange for another day.”

As a matter of fact, my schedule is wide open.” Colleen surprised herself. She sounded so calm and normal. She didn’t feel either.

Lucky for me then. I better catch you while you’re free.”

You think my schedule will fill up quickly?”

Sure. Pretty girl like you. This time next week you might have to pencil me in for a cup of coffee in the middle of the afternoon because that’s the only slot you have left for a month.”

Colleen laughed. Apparently he was up to sarcasm first thing in the morning. “Well, maybe I should pencil you in now and save us both time later.”

If you like.” He allowed a moment’s silence. “Is it alright if I come over about five thirty to pick you up?”

That will be fine. Is it a dressy affair or will any old thing do?”

I’m sure that what ever you choose with be perfect.”

Colleen bit her lip. Anything from that voice sounded like honey and the fact that he was being complimentary made her want to sag against the counter. He couldn’t possibly be that interested. A good looking cop who, from all accounts, was hotly pursued by most of the women in the city. Not that it mattered, Mike brought flowers. “Oh flattery. I can feel my head swelling.”

I only speak the truth. Where am I coming to pick you up?”

Oh yeah. The address.” She told him. “Do you need directions?”

No, I’m pretty familiar with the area.”

Good, ‘cause I can’t give you any. I know how to get to work and Laura’s house and that’s about it.”

Well, maybe I should take you on a driving tour so you can familiarize yourself.”

If you can find me a library and a grocery store I’ll be set for a while.”

I’ll work on that for tonight. See you at five thirty, Colleen.”

Bye Dan.” Colleen hung up the phone and left her hand on it. Dan bantered better than Mike. Of course after last night’s date she had been leaning in Mike’s favor. Now she was swinging toward Dan’s. How long could this go on?

The phone rang under her hand and she picked it up before she realized what she’d done. “Hello?”

Colleen? It’s Mike Luis. You answered quick.”

I’m psychic. I knew the phone was going to ring so I stood right next to it.”

I see.” He paused for a minute. “I had a really good time last night.”

So did I. We would have surprised Sonya in her bathrobe. Next time I’ll warn her ahead of time so you can come inside.”

It’s no problem. It was pretty late. I was wondering, are you off the same days every week?”

Yeah.”

Are you busy next Thursday?”

Not yet.” Dan hadn’t mentioned next Thursday, but he had foreseen her schedule filling up.

Well, if you’d like I could take you out to the desert. I know a pretty nice cluster of rock formations we could climb.”

I’ve never been rock climbing before.”

I’ll teach you. I already have all the equipment we’ll need. I’ll call you on Tuesday to set up the specifics. We’ll be gone all day, back after dark depending on when we start, but there’s a pretty nice diner halfway home were we can pick up some dinner and I’ll pack lunch.”

You could have breakfast here. Before we head out.” Colleen cringed, realizing what it sounded like. “I mean, after you come over. When you pick me up.” She stopped herself before she made it worse.

Alright,” he said hesitantly. “I’ll talk to you Tuesday then. Is it okay if I stop at the store?”

Sure, I should be off at three. I’ll hear from you one way or the other Tuesday then.”

Good deal. Bye Colleen.”

Bye Mike.”

At this rate she was going to need a secretary just to keep track of her personal life.

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