She rang in—to the newly fixed and well-behaved computer—and billed for two upcoming weddings and a retirement party for one of the teachers at the high school. She smiled despite Wendy’s attitude. She might actually make a living at this someday.
“You owe that man an apology.” Wendy had come up to stand beside her, hand on hip, tapping one foot impatiently.
“For what?” Tara knew why she thought she should apologize to Morgan, but she was curious why Wendy thought so.
“For insulting him.” There was that. “And for not being willing to listen.”
“Listen to what?”
Wendy threw her hands up in dramatic defeat. “You are so disconnected sometimes. Don’t you realize he might need someone to talk to, someone to confide in? He’s out on the road all alone.”
Tara stared at her waitress and friend. “Confide in me? About what? How many men do you actually know?”
“Several.” Wendy looked insulted. “I don’t know. He just looks so sad sometimes.”
“Look, I know you mean well. But I’ve got three older brothers and confiding secrets is not something they do.”
She pictured Morgan, first as she’d last seen him, fuming and walking away. Then, that image morphed into the laughing, good-looking guy who was normally in here. Lastly, she saw him as he’d told her—what little he’d told her—about Sylvie.
None of those images was of a man wanting to spill his guts to her. If anything, he’d put considerable effort into covering the pain she saw flash in his eyes.
“Okay, I’ll admit I insulted him, but the last thing Morgan wants is to tell me all about his life’s secrets. And it’s not really something I want to know about.”
“You’re hopeless.” Wendy backed off finally as customers came through the door. A young couple with a toddler. Wendy grimaced at the little boy. High-chair duty meant floor mopping at some point in her near future. They all knew it.
With a sigh, Wendy seated them and even gave the boy’s chubby little cheeks a soft pinch.
Tara laughed as Wendy walked past her toward the kitchen. “See what falling in love gets you?” she whispered just to irritate Wendy. “Floor duty.”
Wendy stuck her tongue out at Tara just before she slipped through the swinging doors. Tara laughed. She enjoyed the friendly banter with all her employees, but more so with Wendy. It reminded Tara of growing up with her sisters.
For the next hour, they hustled to wait on several groups of customers.
Finally, the rush ended and they could take a break. Tara made herself and Wendy mocha lattes with the fancy espresso machine. They’d earned the treat.
She handed Wendy her cup. “Okay, I’ll admit, I was a bit bitchy to Morgan last night.” Had it really been just last night? Seemed like ages ago.
“Yes, a bit.” She slid onto one of the counter stools. The one on the end, where she could see the entire place, either straight on or reflected in the chrome decor in front of her. No wonder Morgan sat here.
She’d have to figure out a way to talk with him and hopefully not end up in another argument. His truck was still parked out back, but she’d seen him leave earlier—clad in sweats and a tank top. She hadn’t seen him come back.
How far did he run to keep himself in such amazing shape? Shape she definitely appreciated. She couldn’t help looking out the window to see if maybe he was out there.
The rain had quit for now, and the sun was trying to break through the thick cloud cover. The ground was wet, with puddles scattered over the parking lot and street. He’d be wet whether it rained any more or not.
Tara tapped her fingers on the counter. Wendy was right. She owed him an apology. But how would she start? What should she say? “I’m sorry I snapped at you” lost a bit of appeal when she followed it with the statement about how he started it.
She wasn’t saying anything until she figured out what to say. Sitting here solved nothing. She headed back into the kitchen. Nervous energy made her pace.
“Just in time.” Katie, her new pastry chef, put her hands on her ample hips. “I got bread dough that could use some kneading.”