Bayou Baby (Butterfly Bayou 2) - Page 7

His aunt had mentioned she was going to a funeral.

The door opened and a familiar face walked through. His cousin Calvin strode his way, adjusting his tie. “Hey, Harry, the funeral’s over and the drinking can start . . . I mean eating. Cajuns know how to throw a reception. There’s gumbo. If there’s one thing Guidrys do right, it’s gumbo. Mom left, but I get to stay and represent the family, if you know what I mean.”

“Don’t you dare spike the punch, Calvin Beaumont.” Helena pointed a finger his cousin’s way.

Calvin shrugged. “I don’t have to. Zep brought it. It’s probably eighty percent hooch. Don’t worry. Lisa made sure he didn’t get close to the lemonade. Besides, Harry can give me a ride home, so I don’t have to bum one off someone here. Naturally my mother took the Benz.”

“You behave,” Helena said with a wave of her hand. “Don’t listen to your cousin, Harry. He’s a rascal of the highest order. Now you let me know when you want to go out with . . . when Debra can show you around.”

“He will,” Cal said with a smirk. “I’ll make sure of it.” He put a hand on Harry’s arm to lead him toward the reception hall. “This is going to be fun. They’ll stop bugging me about getting married and start in on the new guy. Ever since Angie got engaged, my mother has been asking me when I’m going to settle down and give her grandkids. Every momma in town with a single daughter parades her past me like I’m some kind of prize to catch. Now that part is true. I’m very much marriage material. The trouble is I don’t want to get married. I want to have some fun. I would watch out for Debbie. Her grandma thinks she’s an angel, but she’s got about forty hands after a couple of drinks. And the woman talks. A lot. If you don’t want to have every second of your performance harshly graded, you’ll stay away from that one.”

He wasn’t sure he wanted to go to a funeral reception. He was in jeans and a T-shirt. He still had his beat-up old toolbox in his hand. “I didn’t know the deceased. Maybe I should go back to the house.”

Shep would be waiting on him. Shep was a big German shepherd he’d brought home with him from Afghanistan after they’d both been discharged from duty. The dog had sat near his truck and looked at him with sad eyes when he realized he was being left behind. Shep wasn’t used to being left behind. He was pretty much used to spending every minute of the day with Harry.

“Come on.” Cal put a hand on his shoulder. “You’ve got to meet the fine folks of this town at some point. And no one’s real upset about Irene Guidry. That was the single craziest old lady I ever met, and I’ve met most of Momma’s Rotary Club, so that’s saying something.”

He found himself standing in the doorway of the church reception hall. There were a bunch of people milling about, most with red cups in their hands. “For a crazy old lady, she drew quite a crowd.”

“Oh, everyone comes out for funerals in these parts,” Cal admitted as he made his way to the big crystal punch bowl and got himself a cup. “There’s not a lot else to do so weddings and funerals are big social events.” He took a long drink. “And damn, but Zep’s got a heavy hand with the rum. There’s way more rum than punch. The Guidrys might be trash, but trash around here usually knows how to party.”

He wasn’t sure he liked his cousin referring to anyone as trash, but he didn’t know the family well. He did know he’d heard the name Guidry from his aunt’s mouth and it was obvious she didn’t think much of them. “I think I’ll try the lemonade.”

“Suit yourself.” Cal refilled and looked around the crowd. “I’m going to see what Josette has going on. Now, there’s a woman I could spend some time with. Some fun time.”

His cousin winked and walked off toward a slender blonde.

He was rapidly discovering his cousin was a bit of a douchebag.

“You’re the new guy.”

He turned to find his own pretty blonde staring up at him. She was petite, barely coming up to his shoulders, and he would bet half her weight was in that hair. It flowed past her shoulders almost to her waist, and there was so much of it. Thick, honey-colored silk. Sky blue eyes found his own and held him there. Her arms were crossed over her chest, and he noted that she was drinking the lemonade.

“How do you know that? Maybe I’ve been here all along and no one’s noticed me.”

Tags: Lexi Blake Butterfly Bayou Romance
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