Chapter 14 - Bagels & Bear Claws
“What are you doing here Brandon?“Kate stared at him passively, then eyed the two brown bags in his hands.
Brandon’s lips curved into half a smile as he looked at back at her feeling hopeful.
“I brought bagels,” He announced, dangling the one of the bags announced her, “and just to be safe,” he lifted the other one, “Bear claws as well.”
Kate raised an unconvincing brow at him.
He pressed on with a smile. “I didn’t know if you were savoury or sweet kind of girl.”
“You came all the way here just to bring me breakfast?” She furrowed, “wait, how do you know where I live?”
“It took some serious detective work on my behalf.” He replied, “Can I come in?”
She hesitated for a while. With Ben sitting in her living was already hard enough to explain to her nana. How was she going to now explain Brandon being here? This was all too much. She hadn’t even began to digest Ben’s presence and possibly Taylor’s but now him.
“I don’t think that’s such a good idea. My nana...”
“Kate, please.” He plead, not allowing her to finish, “It will only take a minute. I promise.”
She bit down on her lower lip and forced a smile and a passing neighbor, Mrs. Jones.
Great. This was all great.
The was no doubt in Kate’s mind that if she was definitely going to tell her grandmother about this. Judging by the number of times that Mrs.Jones and her grandmother had teased her about finding herself a boyfriend, there was simply now way that she wouldn’t be telling her grandmother about having seen her with a man outside her door.
Kate turned her attention back to Brandon and released a short breath, defeated.
It was hard saying no to Brandon, not with the puppy-eyed face that he was giving her.
She sighed out loud, “Fine. One minute and then you leave. I already have one unwelcome visitor inside and I don’t want my grandmother grilling me with questions later on.”
A smile of victory waved over Brandon’s face as she moved away from the door, allowing him entry. He moved past her and placed the bags on the dining table then stopped once his eyes met Ben’s.
“Ben.” Brandon nodded his head in acknowledgment towards him.
“Mr. Powells.” Ben returned getting to his feet.
Kate stared and the two men then frowned.
“Another story for another time.” She heard Brandon as to say if he had read her mind.
He then addressed Ben, “Can you give us a minute?”
Ben nodded his head then started for the door,Kate moved aside as he brushed past her.
Was that all it took to get rid of him, she wondered.
“Wow, he’s pretty well trained, isn’t he?” She said sarcastically, as she moved to take a previous seat at the dining table.
“Ben’s a troop. I think he’s the only one who can really stand working with Taylor. Been with him for six year now.”
“Huh,” she scoffed,” and loyal too, apparently.”
She grabbed one of the brown bags from the tablen and removed a bear claw, earning a smile from Brandon.
“I should have guessed that you were more of a bear claw kind of girl.”
She didn’t know whether she should be offended. Her eyes narrowed in on him, standing there in the middle of her doorway.
“I have a feeling that you know a whole lot more about me than you let on.” Her tone fell flat as she took a bite at the sweet pastry.
“Now,” she began after swallowing the mouthful of bear claw, “how about you explain why I’m suddenly being graced with your presence?” She asked, staring up at him suspiciously.
“Well,” he began, with his hands firmly tucked in his pockets,“Can I at least have a seat?” He gestured to the vacant chair facing hers.
Kate shrugged. “Might as well. It makes swallowing breakfast a whole lot easier” She countered.
Brandon pulled out the vacant chair that Ben had just been seated on.
“I had a nice little chat with Taylor after you left.” He announced, placing his palms flat on the wooden surface.
Kate stopped chewing and gazed at him.
“Oh?” Was all she said, wondering why he thought she’d want to know this.
She dropped the sweet raised pastry of the table and took her now empty cup of coffee.
“I explained what happened Kate. I took all the blame because if I hadn’t given you the all clear to go in there, then..,well, you wouldn’t be in this mess.”
“You think!” She retorted, getting up and crossed to kitchen.
Brandon got up and followed suit, stopping at the counter that separated them.
“I’m sorry. I really didn’t expect that to happen. ”
Steam evaporated into thin air as she started to fill her cup once more.
“Alright.” She said deciding to humour him. “So you came to apologised. That’s great and all but why do I get the feeling that I’m somehow still not off the hook?”
She tilted her head waiting for him to confirm it.
Brandon sighed, dragging his two hands through his hair.
“Becausesweet Kate.” He paused, face pained as he looked at her. “I lied.”
Kate’s jaws clenched as she scowled down at the coffee pot in her hand. That was not what she had expected him to say.
“About what exactly?” Her eyes held his, shoulders tense and breathing uneven, afraid to hear what he had to say.
“About Taylor and reporters.” He answered lowering his gaze from her cold daggered ones.