Cowboy Boots and Combat Boots

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Chapter Eight

“Aren’t we going for breakfast today?” Rowans voice disturbs my slumber on the floor of my hotel room again. I groan into my pillow. “Because I know this place, where the coffee isn’t terrible.” He adds with a wicked playfulness to his voice. My heart starts racing as my head realizes his plan. I jump up from the floor like a rocket and I’m in the shower before he can say anything else.

I can hear him laughing through the bathroom door. I rush out trying to grab up some clothes. I decide on a faded effect light blue jeans and a fitted v-neck white shirt. I put on my cream colored cowboy hat and new boots as well to complete the look. I get the whistle of approval from the male model on the bed. He’s wearing very tight fitting blue jeans and a light brown colored dress shirt. His hair has that just showered look from all of the product in his hair. We leave the room and I’m practically running to the truck in the car park.

Rowan jumps into the truck beside me and he can’t stop laughing at me. I glare at him.

“What?” I demand as we pull out of the hotel car park. He just gives me a sympathetic look.

“You’ve got it so bad.” He says looking down from his exalted position. I crook my eyebrow up at him.

“Oh, and your dressed up because you wanted to look good for your pancakes?” I tease.

We laugh as we finally pull into the diner car park. My heart rate picks up when I see that gorgeous specimen of machinery sitting in a bay across the lot. Her Indian motor cycle is the perfect embodiment of my goddess in machine form. It’s powerful, sexy, and seems to be holding all the secrets to life.

We go into the diner before I drop to my knees and start praising the bike like the goddess it is. Rowan spots Damien as soon as we enter the diner, he pulls me over to the booth that Damien is occupying alone. He raises an eyebrow as he sees our approach then a knowing smile breaks out on to his face.

“Well fancy seeing you two here.” He says sardonically before planting a quick peck on Rowans cheek as he slides into the booth next to him. I sit in the seat opposite them and smile at the comfort between the two of them. Rowan lifts Damien’s coffee cup to his lips and steals the style section of his newspaper. Damien just takes his coffee back and makes eye contact with someone behind me. His smile tells me who it is, and Rowans beaming smile just confirms it.

“Morning boys, coffee?” Her sweet voice asks and I look up to meet her eyes and can’t stop the smile from spreading on my face.

“Yes please beautiful.” Rowan pleads holding out his cup.

I look at her shirt for a moment as she leans to pour my coffee. I laugh a little as I catch her eye.

“You’re not wearing a name badge?” I say accusingly. She smiles wickedly at me then her face become coy as she shrugs.

“I lost it.” She says innocently before walking off. I can hear the snickering coming from behind the newspapers opposite me.

“It’s not funny.” I scold them both.

“Actually it’s hilarious.” Damien confirms with a sardonic smile. Rowan starts laughing again.

“Do you know what her name is?” I shoot him an incredulous look. He nods and keeps laughing at me. “Traitor.” I shoot at him. He and Damien continue their chuckles.

“So what are you ladies up to today?” Damien asks directing his question at Rowan. Rowan shrugs.

“Not much, we’ll be packing up Link’s stuff and moving him into the spare room at my apartment.” He announces pausing to shoot me a try-and-fight-me-on-this look. I exhale in defeat as he continues. “Then I should check in with work and make sure my projects are all on schedule. But other than that, it should be fairly uneventful.” He concludes. Damien doesn’t enquire about Rowans work which makes me think that they’ve already discussed it at some point.

Rowan with all his creativity his the head of design productions for a company that handles most of the record company contracts in this city. He designs everything from album cover art, to band websites. Our parents are less than proud. He also spends time at the local art college as a nude model for the students there. He says it’s his way of giving back to the community. I smile at the memory of him explaining that to me.

“What about your day?” Rowan asks Damien. He looks pained all of a sudden.

“I’m dealing with all my divorce cases today. I like to deal with them all on one day of the week so the pain is less dragged out.” He states. That must be terrible to spend a whole day with people who despise each other.

My goddess returns to the table to take our breakfast order as Damien gets up.

“I need to be heading off. Before I go, where’s your shadow?” He asks my goddess. She indicates her head over her shoulder and he turns around and smiles an evil smile.

“Hey Evan, come over here for a second.” He calls out. I see the busboy from the other day start walking towards the table.

“What are you doing?” She scolds Damien. He smiles wickedly at her.

“Evan, have you met baby doll’s boyfriend?” Damien asks Evan as he gestures to me. “He’s a soldier.” He adds with a laugh. My goddess flushes with embarrassment.

“Hi.” Evan says shyly before scurrying away without making eye contact with anyone.

I look back at my goddess and realize that her red cheeks aren’t from embarrassment, but anger. The scowl she has fixed on Damien right now is something I never want directed at me. Damien is just laughing like a school yard bully watching Evans retreat.

Thwack! My goddess slaps is arm hard. “Why did you do that?” She demands harshly.

“Oh come on, it was funny. At least now he might stop following you home.” He justifies his actions. I suddenly become enraged at Evan’s intrusion into my goddesses life.

“You know how impressionable he is.” She seethes protectively. “He’s probably going to do something stupid like go and enlist to get my attention.”

“I doubt it.” Damien confirms picking up his brief case from next to Rowan. “Even the army has an IQ requirement.” He says reassuringly. Her anger hasn’t dissipated as he leans in and peck her on the cheek to say goodbye. He turns to leave.

“Have a good day ladies.” He calls back at all of us. I look up at my goddess trying to give her a reassuring smile. I’m not sure what all that was about but for some strange reason I find myself leaning towards Damien’s side in it all. She exhales in frustration after he leaves then she looks at me and returns my smile.

“I’ll be back in just a minute, I just want to go and check on him.” She says sadly looking over to the corner of the diner where Evan is bussing a table. I look at Rowan confused who shrugs in response looking just as confused. We both watch the interaction as she says something to Evan and he nods at her seeming to understand her words. Then she smiles at him and he turns away blushing. She gently pats his shoulder. Then turns away to walk back towards us.

I watch with eagle eyes as Evan’s gaze follows after her like a starving lion would track a wounded animal. Something about his gaze sends off warning alarms inside my brain.

“Sorry about that.” She says coming back to us. “He’s a bit socially awkward sometimes, but that was no reason for Damien to be such a dick.” She says with the anger dripping off her tongue about Damien’s actions. But after watching the way Evan just looked at her I am now one hundred percent in agreement with Damien. Despite that it will upset my goddess I will back him up on future deterrents towards that busboy.

“I’m thinking I’ll have the special today.” Rowan announces thoughtfully and she smiles at him. Then looks towards me.

“And yourself?” She enquires with a playful gleam in her eyes.

“Surprise me.” I challenge her. She laughs taking our menus accepting the challenge like a champ. I have no doubt that she’ll rise to the occasion, all she does is continue to surprise me. I look over at Rowan who is just shaking his head in disappointment.

“When exactly did you lose all game? Or did you never have any to start with?” He teases and I reach out across the table to swipe him but he ducks. We both notice Evan walk past our booth carrying a tub of dirty dishes.

“Burr,” Rowan says as he passes us. “Something about that guy gives me the heebie jeebies” He whispers urgently to me and I nod.

“You picked up on that too?” I query and he nods. “I wonder why she doesn’t see it?” He shrugs at me then I remember something. “Hey, tell me her name.” I demand softly and he breaks out into laughter and shakes his head.

“No way, this is priceless entertainment watching you squirm brother.” He says with a smile.

“You traitor, you tell me everything else. You can’t keep a secret to save your life.” I accuse him.

“I can when it’s this much fun.” He shoots back. “Like when I knew that Julie Pearson was desperate for you to ask her to prom and you ended up asking her way less attractive sister instead.” He chuckles.

“You’re an asshole.” I say remembering that poor decision. My parents were even less thrilled by my choice than Julie was. My Mama was sure I was going to marry my senior prom date and settle down nearby and go to work with my father. My parents were choosing dates for me like horse trainers choose breeding partners to sire fouls.

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