Throughout the next several weeks, Evan went about his routine of going to work and hitting the gym daily. Though he saw Matt Jacobsen at the gym frequently, he never saw Joe Russo again.
One thing Evan hadn’t done was access the website dontaskdonttell.com. His last two intended one-night stands had left a bad taste in his mouth, and he was afraid of being deceived again so soon.
Natasha had presented her first meal prep course to his company and returned that day for a second meal prep course. Evan had noticed a few of the males in the office took her course seriously and had even lost a few pounds. He wasn’t sure if they were serious about eating healthy or serious about trying to get into Natasha’s pants the next time they saw her. From the sounds of it, though, Natasha had a boyfriend, whom she brought up once while they were talking. She hadn’t mentioned her friend again that she wanted to set him up with, but he was hoping she’d bring her up. He could use a real date. He hadn’t been on one since seeing Amanda.
“The conference room is ready for you.”
Natasha looked up to see Evan and Nick standing in front of her in the office building’s lobby. “Great!” she exclaimed and stood. Two large boxes of what appeared to be ingredients lay at her feet. She bent down to pick one up.
“Can Nick and I help you carry this stuff?”
“Yes, thank you.” She handed the box to Nick, who took it with pride.
Evan bent down and grabbed the other box. “Right this way.”
Together they walked to the building’s small auditorium, where Natasha presented her second meal prep course to a roomful of fifty people from Evan’s office.
Once the presentation was over, Nick and Evan helped Natasha pack up her belongings. Evan dismissed Nick and walked Natasha out to her car, hoping she would again bring up the blind date.
“So,” Natasha began, as Evan put the last box in the back seat of her car, “are you single?”
Evan set the box on the leather interior and grinned as they locked eyes. “I am.”
“Great!” Natasha clapped her hands together with a flirtatious smirk. “Any chance you’re free tomorrow night?”
For a second, Evan wondered if she was asking him out for herself.
“Just so we’re clear,” she continued with a smile, “I thought my boyfriend and I could double date with you and my friend, Emma. She’s adorable.”
“Sounds good. Where do you have in mind?”
“Let’s meet at The Coastal View. Does 6 PM work for you?”
“I’ll make it work.”
Natasha confidently strutted from the back passenger door to the driver’s side door and opened it, flashing Evan a playful smile. “I’ll see you tomorrow, then.” She moved her sunglasses from atop her head over her eyes and got into her car, shutting the door behind her.
As Natasha drove away, Evan couldn’t help but think that she was flirting with him and wondered what exactly she had up her sleeve.
The next evening, Evan skipped the gym and headed straight home after work to get ready for his blind date. He slipped on a crisp green-collared shirt tucked into dark denim jeans that hung flawlessly off his chiseled hips, so Amanda would have told him. He missed the way she made him feel, continually stroking his ego. He wanted to feel that secure, again.
Evan took a seat at his computer desk and typed dontaskdonttell.com in the browser. His last login was weeks ago. He only had a few minutes before he needed to leave and head to the restaurant, but he wanted to see if the woman with the butterfly tattoo had written him back. He clicked on the envelope icon to see all of his messages. She had not responded.
Feeling defeated, he logged off the website, headed out the door, and began his twenty-minute drive to The Coastal View Restaurant, eager to meet Emma Lawson.