Old men are almost as bad as the ladies. But these widowers are old softies to the core, and they all want grandkids. Some of them have their own, but apparently a lot is never enough.

When they break out the cards, I call it a night and head back into the city. I’ve got a place on the Upper East Side that I got for a deal when I was twenty-five. I’ve fixed it up, and though it’s simple, it’s palatial by New York standards, and it’s all mine.

I take the subway back home and think about Jay the entire ride back. I always think about her this time of night. I wonder what she’s doing, who she’s with, and if she’s thinking of me.

It’s the worst part of the weekend, being away from her. And the reason why I love Mondays so much. Another chance to see her, another chance to be near her. It’s the day I look forward to the most.

Chapter Two


I stare at my emails, willing Mr. Stein to respond. It’s been two days and I haven’t heard a peep from him on the Lannister reports he was supposed to turn in Monday. I’m starting to wonder what’s really going on. This shouldn’t be taking this long. I know my boss, Miles Osbourne, will ask me about the project soon, and not having a response isn’t an option. This was supposed to be cleared up before he even left on his honeymoon. I hate not knowing an answer when asked a question. Picking up the phone, I call Mr. Stein’s number for the third time this morning. This time it goes straight to voice mail, and I know he turned his phone off. I grit my teeth, placing the phone back down.

Normally I would go down to Mr. Stein’s office and stand outside his door until I got what I needed. But he’s been working from home for the last two weeks. It never fails that when I need something, there’s no one to be found, but when people want Mr. Osbourne’s attention, they’re banging down the door. I wonder if there’s a way to get his home address, but I change my mind thinking I can’t just show up at his house. Can I? That might be a little too pushy, even for me.

Leaning back in my chair, I look at the clock and know my boss will be in any moment. I pull up his schedule and look at the seemingly endless list of things that need to be done. Mr. Osbourne has been out of the office for weeks on his honeymoon. I scan his agenda and debate what to go over with him first. I have a feeling it’s going to be hard to get through the list. He didn’t respond to any of my emails while he was gone. I wanted to keep him up to date on things, but I guess he took his honeymoon seriously.

I pull out my notebook and open it to where I’d left off. I want to enjoy the last few free moments I’ll likely have today. I like coming in early and writing at my desk while it’s quiet. It beats sitting at home in my tiny apartment, where my only window faces a brick wall.

My phone dings, and I see a text from Jim, one of the security guards who monitors the front entrance to the building.

Jim: Incoming.

Hopping up from my chair, I make my way to the break room on our floor and hit the start button on the coffee machine in case Mr. or Mrs. Osbourne would like something to drink. I’m guessing Mallory may not, since she’s pregnant. Mr. Osborne hasn’t come out and told me she’s expecting, but with some of the purchases I’ve been making for him, she has to be.

The office has been different now that he’s married. He’s slowed down a lot. Things are shifting to a snail’s pace, and I’m not sure how I really feel about that. Too much free time is starting to make me think about how pathetic my social life is. Or maybe it’s watching my boss fall madly in love that’s doing that to me. I thought men only fell head over heels like that in books.

Something is missing in my life, and I don’t mean the Stein report. Stomping my foot, I head back to my desk just as Miles and Mallory exit the elevator.

“Sir,” I say in greeting. “Coffee?” I ask. Mr. Osbourne reluctantly pulls his eyes away from his wife. Both of whom look like they spent most of their honeymoon in the sun. Their skin is sun-kissed, and they look pleasantly relaxed. He smiles at me, something he’s been doing more and more since Mallory came around. Smiles had always been a rare thing on his face before her.

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