“Fine, we can look at other places if you want.” She gives in, but I can tell she’s disappointed.

“I still need to see about breaking my lease. I’m hoping I can get out of it with everything that happened, but who knows if I’ll get that lucky.”

“Have Devin call for you. He’s a lawyer.” Do all things lead back to Devin? According to Grams, yes.

“I don’t know him. I can’t ask for favors. He’s already letting me stay at his place.” I push the pie away from me because if I eat another bite I might explode.

“I’ll talk to him.”

“Grams,” I groan.

“What? I’m on the board in the building. I talk to him about everyone that moves in.” I know there is no stopping her at this point now that she’s already back on me moving in there.

“I’m going to look around and check some places out.”

“Fine, but try and be close. I know you hate to drive.” That’s really a fear I should try and get over.

“How was everything?” Johnny sets some to-go boxes down on the table for us.

“Wonderful, thank you so much.” My phone starts to ring and I dig it out of my bag. “Landlord,” I whisper to Grams and she nods as I stand. I give Johnny a wave as I head outside to take the call.

“Hello,” I say as I hold the phone to my ear.

“Hey Erin. I wanted to let you know we got the locks changed in your place. They really did a number in there. Do you have renter’s insurance?”

“Yes.” I haven’t called them yet, but I’m going to have to go back and clean everything up and assess the damage at some point. I need to pack up whatever is salvageable and I wonder if I can hire someone to do that. Then I wouldn’t have to worry about going back at all, but I need to be smart and that would probably cost a small fortune.

“That’s good. I know a few security places if you want to see about getting an alarm or something,” he suggests.

“I’m not really sure I’ll be coming back there to live,” I admit.

“Oh.” He sounds surprised. “Okay, we can talk about that the next time you’re here. You still have some time left on your lease.”

“I know. I’ll worry about it when I get back.” Maybe he could keep my security deposit and we can call it even?

“All right. I went ahead and took some pictures. I’ll email them over to you. Your insurance company might want them.”

“Thanks. I’d appreciate that.” I really don’t want to see them, but it has to be done. “Oh, and Peter is worried about you. He wanted to call you, but I didn’t feel comfortable giving your number out even if he is your neighbor.”

My stomach turns at the mention of his name. “Yeah, please don’t.” The last thing I need is him calling me.

“All right. I’ll send those pictures over tonight. If you need anything else, let me know.”

“Thanks.” I end the call as Grams comes outside.

“Late night sweets.” She hands me the bag. “Where to now?” I look down at my watch and it’s almost four.

“I think I want to lie down.” Really I need to do something with my hair and find something to wear. Do I dress up or will I look like I’m trying too hard? What if I think it’s a date when it might not be one?

“A nap sounds good. I need to freshen up before I go out tonight. It’s ladies’ night over at the Alamo. Do you want to come?” Gram shakes her shoulders like she’s dancing.

“I think I’ll spend the night in.” I yawn, playing it up.

“All right. If you change your mind you’re more than welcome to join us.”

“Thanks.”

Now I just pray Grams leaves before Devin gets back tonight. I’ll never hear the end of it if she catches us together. I don’t want to get Grams’ hopes up about the two of us. Devin is in a whole other league than me and I don’t only mean looks. His whole life is in another world and I’m not sure I could ever fit in.

Chapter Ten

Devin

It feels weird to knock on the door to my own place, but I decide this might be better than just walking in like this morning. It doesn’t take Erin long before she peeks out a little and sees me standing there.

“Would it be strange if I said ‘please come in’?” She laughs as she opens the door and I walk in with bags of food.

“Not as strange as me ordering everything on the menu.” I walk over to the dining room table and set all the bags of Chinese food down.

“Did you invite people to come with you?” She looks up at me and then quickly away and I wonder if that was the sound of disappointment I heard in her voice.

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