Too Tasty

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Be My Pretend Boyfriend

Finally, it was time to close the diner. I was exhausted from having to clean up an extra mess, cook, bake, and be a waitress all at once. It’s a lot of work and requires ample amounts of patience.

I should text Knox to let him know I’m heading out and call Mario to tell him about Max’s “pranks.”

I wandered back into the kitchen and typed in Knox’s number to text him. I also needed to grab my ruined clothes, a couple treats, and my purse.

Me: Hey Knox, just letting you know that I’m locking up the bakery in a few minutes to head home.

His response was almost immediate.

Knox: Okay, get home safely.

Me: Sir, yes sir.

Knox: ; )

I really want to ask Knox if he knows anyone named Tyler but maybe that’s too straightforward. Ughhhh, I’m going to have to finesse this in order to get answers from either Knox or Tyler. I’m so curious!

I grabbed my purse that was on the same shelf as that infamous bag of flour when I noticed the there was a note with some money next to it.

You had a bad day. I probably made it worse by filming your reaction to Max. I couldn’t help myself though. It’s going to be a hilarious video to watch in a couple of months. I’ll even email you a copy of it if you want.

But I hope that you know that you’re beautiful no matter what that nasty woman said about you. (Yes, I heard her muttering crap about you when I passed her down the street.)

By the way, you don’t need to pay me to buy you a new dress or shampoo. Don’t bother trying to pay me back. I was going to get you a new outfit regardless of whether you asked or not. So suck it up buttercup and rock that beautiful yellow dress.

See you on March 29th at the Anniversary Gala,

Tyler

I smiled at his kind words and tucked his letter into my purse along with the cash.

Knox and Tyler aren’t so bad after all.

Tyler may have been a bit intrusive but I guess he cared about me for some unknown reason.

And Knox, he was such an amazing guy. He didn’t even question me when I had a panic attack.

I felt butterflies in my stomach when I thought about seeing Knox and Tyler again. Not from nervousness but from excitement because I actually had two new friends.

I walked towards the front door of the diner to lock up. I shut the lights and made sure the security system was all set before leaving to walk home.

The sun had already set so now all that was left was a cloudy evening and a chill that had me shivering.

My apartment really wasn’t that far from here. It was only a 15-minute walk. I hadn’t bought a car yet because I lived so close to town that there was no need. Plus, I was trying to save my money to buy a house for my sisters and I, not waste it on car payments as an unnecessary expense.

I want to make sure that I’ll have a place to live when it’s time to retire, even though I’m still in my twenties. Maven and Teela will need somewhere to stay---unless they want to settle in CT. Speaking of my sisters, I should give them a call when I get home to check in on them.

As I walked down the sidewalk, I dialed Mario’s number and waited for him to pick up.

Mario: Ciao bella, come stai?

I could literally hear classical Italian music playing in the background and a bunch of other people chattering. He must be at a family get together or a party. Typical Mario.

Me: I’m fine. What were you thinking when you hired Max? Do you know what he did today?!

Mario: Ah, benissimo! Max is such a wonderful young man. I’m sure he was helpful.

Me: I don’t think so. He doesn’t know how to cook or clean and he made a huge mess with Windex. I HAD TO WASH MY HAIR OUTSIDE OF THE DINER with a stranger because I had chunks of dough in it.

Mario: *chuckles* Give him a chance Karina. He’s not a bad kid, he just lacks parental support.

So do I but even I turned out to have some common sense. Max seemed to have zero brain cells. Or perhaps he chose not to use his brain at all. Selective thinking maybe? I don’t even know if that’s real.

Me: Mhm, totally Mario. But don’t you think that you should’ve hired someone more---?

“He hung up on me. Unbelievable,” I muttered to myself as I picked up the pace.

I wanted some dinner and my precious beauty sleep but I was still 10 minutes away from my apartment.

Today, I would've really loved a ride home but I can't afford to waste money on an Uber. I really ought to save so that I can eventually afford a car and a house in the future even though it'll be---.

“Well, well, well. Look who we have here,” Seth sneered, eying my outfit up and down. Even his entourage of bad men looked at me like I was a snack they wanted to devour which made me feel disgusted and uncomfortable. I swallowed a gag and walked faster to escape his leering eyes. I scanned the area to look for people that I could ask for help but I couldn't find anyone nearby.

"Leave me alone, fucktard," I sneered back as I tried to speed walk away. I didn't want to try to dial 911 and then accidentally trip like people do in movies so I moved as fast as I could without running.

“Get her boys,” Seth ordered and I started sprinting away from my apartment. I didn't want them to know where I lived. Otherwise, they'd devise other methods to harass me!

Thank God I decided to stay in shape after high school track.

I didn’t look back. I just kept running until I found myself in front of a large house with a muscular, broad-shouldered man playing basketball with a young girl.

“Can you please pretend to be my boyfriend?” I asked, panting as I ran up his driveway. I was out of options and if this man said no, I was royally fucked.

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