“We have a million things,” I tell him, getting myself together, trying to push from my mind thoughts about a man who probably never thinks about me. My stomach does a little dip at that.

“I also have some things I need to get together as well.”

“I made a folder on your computer about the best baby products,” I tell him, anticipating what he was going to say.

“Am I that bad?” he asks as I follow him into his office. He is that bad, but it’s sweet and endearing. It’s making me wish for things I’d never thought of before. Not even in the silly little books I write when I can find the time.

“Yes, you’re that bad. But I think all soon-to-be fathers are.”

Chapter Three


I turn to one of my monitors, and like every day, the first thing I do is pull up the calendar. When I see the change, my day improves. Jay is free for lunch now.

Some people might think I’m a little obsessed, and maybe I am, but having this much computer knowledge can’t just go to waste. I know everything there is to know when it comes to hacking, and they’ve made it even easier here at Osbourne Corp. They’ve given me the keys to the castle, so of course I’m going to take a look around. Even more so when it comes to my obsession. I can’t stop myself from checking in on her.

One of the first things I did when I met Jay was to go in and see what she was up to. Getting her calendar was the easiest way to do that. If anything, she’s thorough, and her entire day is planned out to the minute on her work calendar. I know when I can bump into her. Make sure we’re always running into one another. I could watch her on the cameras, but seeing her in person is so different. To be near her. To smell her and sneak small touches. It’s all I have, but I soak up all I can get.

It’s a little more difficult to predict her evenings as she doesn’t list her social life on her work schedule, but after a few lunches together, I realized that she doesn’t seem to have one. That news shouldn’t have made me as excited as it did, but I can’t say I’m sorry about it.

I send her a quick email now that I know she’s free to see if she wants to meet for lunch.

From: JChen@OsbourneCorp.net

Subject: Lunch

You free today? I think they’re serving potato soup.


I called down this morning first thing to see what they were having. The potato soup is her favorite, so this should do the trick.

From: JRose@OsbourneCorp.net

Subject: RE: Lunch

Perfect! I’m starving. Hope I can make it until noon.

Hungry like the wolf


My insides warm as I reply to her.

From: JChen@OsbourneCorp.net

Subject: RE: Lunch

Bottom left drawer. Thought you might have skipped this morning.

I wait half a second before my email pings.

From: JRose@OsbourneCorp.net

Subject: RE: Lunch


Okay you’ve officially made my day and it’s only 9 a.m. You get the biggest gold star out of everyone on my list. Pineapple muffin? It’s like you’re psychic.

Soups are on me at noon. Be there or be square.

I reply back with a gif of Yoda giving her a thumbs-up, then immediately regret it. I put my face in my hands and rub my eyes, wondering why I’m an idiot. No wonder she doesn’t see me as anything more than a friend. I should have sent something cool and called her “babe” or “sweetheart.” Something. Anything. But instead I sent an old man from Star Wars as a token of my love. This is why I’ll remain single forever. Not that I want to be with just anyone. It’s her that I want and I keep seeming to slide myself into the friend zone.

I groan, and I feel a paper clip hit the top of my head. I look up and see Paige shoot me the bird before she goes back to her computer screen.

She might know something is going on between Jay and me. She likes to know what everyone is up to, and she’s spotted us in the cafeteria a time or two. Little does she know I’m solidly in the friend zone and keep reaffirming that with every email.

I was hoping today I could do something more suave. We had lunch Monday and Tuesday but I still couldn’t bring myself to make a move. I know she loves the bakery down in Tribeca, so I took two subways to get her the pineapple muffin she’s always talking about. It’s her favorite, and she never takes the time to eat breakfast.

My plan for romancing her this morning didn’t go so well, so maybe I can try again at lunch. I decide to work as much as I can before then to distract myself from the epic swing-and-a-miss.

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