“Erin!” I jumped about two feet off the ground. Turning around, I saw Grant and his latest girlfriend Bethany, a professional artist’s model, standing inside the apartment doorway looking at me like I was crazy.
“What? Why are you yelling at me?”
“We said hello, and we didn’t sneak in, you know how noisy the lock on this door can be. What the heck were you thinking about?” Grant loosened his tie and pulled off his sport coat.
“I was just wondering how I did in the interview today,” I told him.
“Oh, ruminating over things,” he said with a grin. “I should have done this… or said that…”
I sat down in the chair while he and Bethany took the couch. Bethany was beautiful, there was no doubt, but I found her somewhat lacking in the brains department. I found that to be blaringly obvious now as she looked at Grant and said, “You should have done what, sweetie?”
“Oh no,” Grant said. “I was talking to Erin.”
“Well, excuse me,” she said. “If you’d like me to leave while you tell her what you should have done or said…” I could tell that Grant was amused. The really amusing thing was that in about a week he would no longer be amused, but instead he would be annoyed. The shelf life on the long flouncy hair and the plastic boobs was about that long as far as he was concerned. He was a player, but I guess a single, gorgeous man in Manhattan at the age of twenty-five is supposed to be. It took my mind back to Seth. I wondered if he was a player.
Grant rolled his eyes at her and turned his attention back to me. “I’m sure you aced it,” he said. “You are by far one of the smartest people I know.” Bethany looked wounded and Grant just gave her a look that said, “Really?”
I had to stifle a smile as I said, “Thank you, Grant. It wasn’t terrible… I don’t know… I walked out of there thinking that I’d done a fantastic job. I just have the tendency to second guess myself in situations like this.”
“Yes, you do,” he said with a smile. “Historically, if you’ll remember, it has been with no reason. You always excel. So, Bethany and I are going to grab some lunch. I don’t have to be back to work until two. Come with us.”
“I don’t think so…”
“Why? Because you have so many more picture frames to adjust on the walls this afternoon?”
I laughed, he was right. I didn’t have a single other thing to do today except for obsessing and that was going to help no one. “Okay. Let me change. I’ll be right out.”
As I was headed into the bedroom to change I heard Bethany say, “She would be a really pretty girl if she’d lose the glasses and the bun.”
“With or without them,” Grant said. “She’s amazing.”
The lunch with Grant and his girlfriend was nice. Bethany was not the brightest bulb on the tree, but she was sweet and funny… even when she wasn’t aware that she was making a joke. Grant and I were cut from the same kind of cloth. We were both driven to succeed and we often forgot to be anything but serious. Bethany was fun and silly and she seemed to have the ability to make light of just about any situation. I’m sure that beyond her obvious, “assets” that was what attracted Grant to her. It was a nice afternoon, but it was only one. Grant was busy the rest of the week and everyone else I knew worked hard Monday through Friday so the rest of the week was excruciating.
By Friday night I had every closet, cupboard and drawer in the house neatly organized and without so much as a speck of dust in the corner. The laundry was done pretty much as soon as it got dirty. I watched more television than I had in an entire year and I was contemplating calling off my next week of vacation if I didn’t hear back about the job soon. As I sat there watching Dateline and wondering why people get married if they’re just going to have to worry about killing their spouse and covering it up, Grant burst through the front door.
“I need a drink.”
I turned to look at him. He had on a black shirt that was unbuttoned slightly at the top and a pair of light wash jeans. His hair was as messy as ever and he had a sexy five o’clock shadow thing going on. I hadn’t seen him when he got home from work; I’d gone to the grocery store for the third time that week. That was the other thing about being home all day, I was eating way too much. Since it was Friday night, I had just assumed he and Bethany were out.
“Bad date?” I asked as he rushed by on his way to the kitchen. I could hear him opening and closing cabinets.