“I’m pleased to meet you too, Miss Laine. I understand we’re headed to the airport? Your destination must be somewhere warm.”
It only takes me a second to realize I left the house with Tahiti on my mind and didn’t take into account that I would still be in the brisk spring air of New York this morning. I’m wearing a short sundress and espadrille sandals, with just a thin scarf around my shoulders. Oh well. It’s too late to change.
“Yes, I’m headed to Tahiti,” I say with a smile. Cornie nods and bows, holding open the car door for me.
“You’ll have a wonderful trip, Miss,” he says. Then, my luggage is stowed and the car pulls smoothly away from the curb.
I’m a little nervous about the whole thing, and I make small talk with Cornie on the drive to the airport. He doesn’t seem like a stranger because I’ve spoken to him so many times on the phone. We arrive at the drop-off point, and it’s not as crowded as I expect. Cornie grabs a cart and then unloads my bags and stacks my laptop and carry-on neatly on top of my suitcase before strapping them all securely together, like an expert. I admire the neat stack because this is the first time I’m using the luggage that my Aunt Donna bought me as a college graduation present.
“Can I get someone to help you to check in, Miss Laine?”
“No, I got it. Thank you so much Cornie!”
I wave to him as I make my way inside. There are signs for all the major airlines to my right, and I fumble through my travel documents. I’m so flustered that I can’t even remember where I’m supposed to go. Oh god. What was the name of the airline? I swear, I had it in my head not five minutes ago. But then I hear my name being called from across the large terminal.
“Miss Laine,” a gorgeous redhead in a navy suit calls as she walks towards me. “Kelsey Laine?” she asks.
I nod, confused.
“Yes, that’s me.”
“This way, Miss Laine. Mr. Commons is expecting you. I’m so sorry to tell you, but there’s has been a slight delay because of the fog. But I’m sure it’ll clear up in no time!” she chirps. I nod, surprised by this development as the lovely redhead leads me into a private lounge. Immediately, I spot Mr. Commons. He’s sitting at a small table in a sky blue polo shirt with a stripe across the chest that accentuates how broad his shoulders are. His jet black hair is brushed backwards casually, and his jeans drape just-so from those narrow hips. Of course, my throat goes dry immediately. My boss is so gorgeous, and now I’m going to an island paradise with him.
“Hey Kelsey,” he greets. “It’s early, isn’t it? Thanks for coming.”
My knees go weak as I imagine those broad shoulders above me as we lay on a king-size bed. I swallow hard, and manage a weak smile.
“Hi Mr. Commons. Sure, no problem. Happy to be here.”
He smiles again as the redhead speaks once more.
“Miss Laine, can I get you a mimosa or something to eat while you wait to board the plane?” she asks.
“No, I’m okay, thank you. I’ll just take some coffee, if you have it? Light and sweet, please.”
But Keith interrupts.
“She’ll have a mimosa and bring her one of those Greek omelets, with extra feta cheese. Also, some of those fabulous honey drizzled sweet potato fritters. Thank you, Angela.”
The redhead nods courteously.
“Of course, Mr. Commons,” she says before dashing off. Then I turn to my boss.
“Mr. Commons, that isn’t necessary, and I don’t need to drink on the job at eight o’clock in the morning.”
He grins, flashing bright white teeth.
“Don’t worry, sweetheart. You’re not going to get in trouble. But first things first: please call me Keith, and not Mr. Commons. Mr. Commons sounds like an eighty-year old man. Second, I insist on getting you breakfast and I already know you love Mediterranean food. Third, we’re traveling today, and not working, so feel free to relax. Have as many mimosas as you’d like. Honestly, I’m on my second Bloody Mary already,” he says, indicating the glass of dark red liquid before him.
At that moment, Angela returns with the mimosa and breakfast.
“Thank you, Angela. That was really fast,” Keith says.
She nods and smiles.
“Of course, Mr. Commons. I took the liberty of having your chef prepare a few items in anticipation of your arrival. Please enjoy!” she sings before waltzing off.
I stare at the food before looking back up at Keith. It looks delicious, but I have to ask.
“This lounge has its own chef?”
Keith nods and chuckles.
“Yes, but I have my personal chef with me too. This particular area is private, and those of us that use it often sometimes bring along our own support staff. Now enjoy, honey. I like seeing a woman eat.”