“The rich and famous crowd.” And then I remembered how Zane knew me. “Well, you know that already,” I let out a weak laugh, “I wouldn’t be working at Lou’s if I was rich and made of money.”
“Then I’m glad you’re not rich.” He smiled, a gigantic toothy smile and I couldn’t stop myself from grinning back at him. “Because I feel sorry for anyone who is a part of this crowd.”
“Oh?” I looked at him in surprise.
“It’s a long story.” He sighed. “I don’t want to bore you.”
“I don’t think you have a boring bone in your body.” Why was I so obvious? I wanted to pinch myself.
“There are many girls who would beg to differ with you there.” He laughed.
“So who’s your date tonight?” I questioned looking around.
“No date tonight.” He laughed, and I wiggled my eyebrows in surprised.
“That’s got to be a first.”
“I usually reserve Fridays for my dates.” He stared into my eyes. “I think you’ve met every woman I’ve taken out in the last few months.”
“A different one every week.” I laughed, trying not to let my curiosity get the better of me. I wanted to know why he dated so many different women, but I knew it was none of my business.
“Well, I have to get what I need.” He cleared his throat. “More importantly, don’t ever take Friday nights off. I’m not sure my dates would go as well if you weren’t there.”
“I’m not sure I’m a good luck charm. I never see you with the same girl more than once.” I hoped he would pick up the hint and answer my unasked question.
“What about you? You here with your boyfriend?” His eyes bore into mine intently. Even in the darkness of the room, his eyes sparkled a vivid blue.
“No.” For some reason, I didn’t want to tell him that I didn’t have a boyfriend. I didn’t want him to know that, since he had been frequenting Lou’s, he was all I could think about.
“I’m surprised he let you come out by yourself.” He continued, trying to fish an answer out of me.
“I’m here with friends.” I smiled and looked around nervously.
“So what does he do?” He persisted and I wondered why it was so important for him to know.
“Who?” I frowned, pretending to be confused.
“Oh, well, I don’t exactly have one right now.”
“Aw, you’re rocking the single life?” He grinned and moved in closer to me.
“You could say that.” I rolled my eyes.
“You’re a beautiful girl, I’m sure there has to be someone you’re interested in.”
“Not really.” Just you, and you’re a player, so no thanks, I thought to myself.
“This isn’t the sort of party to meet a good guy though.” Zane spoke seriously. “I mean, a lot of the guys here aren’t the sort of guys I would recommend to a girl like you.”
“Well I will try and remember that.” I was unsure if his comment was meant to be helpful or disparaging.
“I’m sure you will meet a Mr. Wonderful soon.” He paused. “I guess that’s what you women want, right? A Mr. Wonderful to sweep you off your feet and promise you a forever?”
“You could say that.” I answered honestly. “Though I’m waiting patiently. I know the right guy is out there somewhere.” I’m hoping he’ll come sooner rather than later, but there was no way I was going to tell him that.
“So, Lucky. What else do you do asides from working at Lou’s.”
“I’m studying history at UM. I know it sounds a bit boring, but I love it.”
“History, huh?” His eyes glowed. “Know anything about the Civil Rights Era?”
“It’s my specialty actually.” I spoke enthusiastically. “I’m actually focusing on that period of time for my thesis.”
“I can tell that you enjoy it.” He smiled gently and reached over and stroked my cheek softly. “There’s something wonderful about a woman who is passionate about something.”
“I’m a ….” My breath caught and my cheek burned under his touch.
“Lucky, there you are.” Leeza ran up to me and squealed. “I was so worried you weren’t going to come.”
“I’m here.” I smiled and did a little twirl. I saw Zane laugh at my little dance and I smiled back at him warmly.
“I want you to meet this guy.” She grabbed my arm enthusiastically.
“I’m actually talking to someone.” I smiled at Zane apologetically, and he grinned back at me.
“Oh?” Leeza turned around and stared at Zane, her blue eyes nearly popping out as she looked him up and down. “Hi, I’m Leeza, Lucky’s best friend. And you are?” She flung her blonde hair over her shoulders, and it took everything I had to smile and not roll my eyes. She was a shameless flirt and she never met a man she didn’t want to make fall under her spell.
“Zane.” He smiled at Leeza briefly and then looked at me. “I’m a friend of Lucky’s.”
“You never told me about any Zane.” Leeza stared at me with accusatory eyes.
“Well, we’ve just been getting to know each other recently.” I started.
“Now now, Lucky.” Zane slid his arm around my waist. “What do you consider the last three months? The honeymoon period?”
“Well, you know.” I was left speechless by his little act and his hand lit a fiery trail on my back as he moved it back and forth.
“You two are dating?” Leeza hissed. “You have got to be joking.”
“Why?” Zane questioned her. “Did Lucky not tell you about our marathon sessions in the bedroom? I think we nearly broke her bed the other evening.”
“Zane.” I laughed and hit him in the arm. “Leeza’s my roommate.”
“Well, darn it. It was worth a try.” He grinned at me and his nose brushed mine as he leaned in to talk to me. For the next few seconds, we just stared at each other and all I wanted was for him to kiss me.
“It was good seeing you, Lucky. Have a good evening.” Zane pulled away from me slowly and I felt that sharp sting of regret that I hadn’t moved in for the kiss. Before I could say anything, he turned around and disappeared back into the crowd. I felt disappointed, but tried to hide my frustration as I turned back to Leeza. It was probably better that I didn’t spend too much time getting to know Zane better; I didn’t want to end up as one of his Friday night dates.
“He was cute.” Leeza grinned. “But he seems like a psycho.”
“Why does he seem like a psycho?”
“I don’t know. Just something about him seemed off. And his crappy joke.”
“He’s a nice—”
“Come on Lucky, let me introduce you to Evan.” Leeza cut me off and flung her hair over her shoulder again. She was wearing a super tight lack mini dress and I was slightly worried that her boobs were going to pop out each time she flung her hair.
“Who’s Evan?” I asked disinterestedly. I looked around the room to see if I could see where Zane had gone.
“Just come.” She grabbed my arm and pushed through the crowds of trendy people until we got to the stairs and then she let go. “All the cool guys are hanging out in the music room.”
“Uh, okay?” I frowned. “Isn’t the party at the bottom of the stairs though?”
“Don’t be a buzz kill, Lucky. Everyone knows the best parts of a party don’t occur in the public part of the party. All of the cool people like Evan hang out separately.”
“I’m not cool and I don’t want a cool guy.” I sighed.
I’m sure you will like Evan.” Leeza pleaded.
“Leeza, I’m really not in the mood for this.”
“He’s a hottie, and he’s rich.”
“Leeza you know I’m not looking for—”
“Just give him a chance, Lucky. Your plan hasn’t exactly been working for you. I haven’t seen you on a date in months. And I don’t even think you have a vibrator. Just give him a chance, okay?”
I didn’t stop to correct her comment. It wasn’t like I wanted to scream it out to the world, “I haven’t had sex in over a year”. I knew that wouldn’t help my case. I tried to forget about Zane as I followed Leeza up the stairs. I wished I had a potion to stop my heart from running every time I saw him. I could close my eyes and picture his sky blue irises staring into mine. They always seemed so open and honest. But I knew he was a player—a man not to be trusted. I just wished that I could embed that information into my heart. But every week that he came into the diner, was a week where I found myself liking him more and more. It was funny. I was his server and we weren’t really friends, but we had had some pretty interesting conversations in the diner. Sometimes they happened while he waited on a date to arrive and sometimes he stayed in the restaurant and chatted for a bit if the girl decided to take a cab home. Getting to know Zane these last few months had really brightened my day and I couldn’t imagine a Friday night without him coming in.
“Come on, Lucky.” Leeza called down the stairs as I walked up slowly to meet her. “Hurry it up, I don’t have all night.”
“I’m coming.” I sighed.
“Come on.” She grabbed my arm as I reached the top of the stairs and then pulled me into a room with her. “This is my friend Lucky, everyone.” Leeza’s tone changed as she opened the door, and I followed her in hesitantly. There were four guys sitting on chairs and drinking, and they all smirked at me, as they looked me over. “Lucky, this is Evan.” She pointed to a tall guy with jet-black hair and striking green eyes.
“Hi.” I shook his hand, and he leaned over to kiss me.
I blushed at his words and turned away, slightly uncomfortable. I saw another guy in the corner of the room, giving me a sympathetic look, and he jumped up.
“Lay off Evan.” He hit Evan on the shoulder and held his hand out to me. “Hi, I’m Braydon.”
“Hi, I’m Lucky.” I smiled, grateful that I didn’t have to deal with Evan. Leeza had already disappeared, and I was already feeling slightly annoyed.
“That’s an unusual name.” Braydon laughed. “Would you like a drink?”
“I’m okay, thanks. I have to drive home, so I’m not having anything else.”
“Well, that’s no fun.” He grinned.
“Sorry, I guess I’m not a fun person.” I grinned and made to turn around but he grabbed me by the arm.
“Hey Lucky, want to have a seat?”
“Yeah. Thanks.” I followed him back to the corner, and we sat on a brown leather couch.
“So tell me about your name, Lucky.” He smiled a genuine boyish smile and I relaxed as I looked into his brown eyes. He seemed like a nice guy, somewhat familiar, but I knew that I had never met him before.
“My parents thought they couldn’t conceive. They tried for years.” I smiled. “And then, they had me. And they considered themselves the luckiest parents in the world.”
“Wow, that must have been a nice surprise.”
“Yeah. They were really happy to have me.” I smiled wistfully. “They used to tell people that they won the lottery. And then they would boast about how they were the luckiest people in the world.”
“Well, I bet they are.” He smiled at me gently, though I noticed that his eyes were slightly glazed.
“Yeah.” I let my voice drift off as I felt tears pricking my eyes. I didn’t want to be talking about this right now. “So how did you get the name Braydon? It’s not that common either.”
“My mother made it up.” He laughed and ran his hands over his baldhead. “She wanted a name that no other kid had. So she made up Braydon.”
“It’s a cool name.”
“A cool name for an uncool guy.” He laughed modestly. I stared at him as he laughed, and I was about to say something when I realized that he looked really really familiar.
“Hey, do I know you?” I cocked my head, trying to think where I knew him from. “I don’t think I do, but there is something about your face.”
“Aw drats, you finally figured it out.” He shook his head, and I saw a red flush across his cheeks. “I’m Braydon Eagle.”
“Uhm, okay.” I paused, not really sure what I was suppose to have figured out.
“You still don’t know, do you?” He laughed and looked amused.
“No, sorry.” I bit my lip and flushed, embarrassed that I had no clue.
“That’s okay. I had to shave my hair off last week. Imagine me with a full head of bleach blond hair.”
“OMG!” I looked at him in surprise. “You’re Braydon Eagle.” I felt my cheeks heat up. He was the famous actor Braydon Eagle. He had been a child star and had recently hit it big in movies. Hollywood called him the new Leonardo DiCaprio. I even had a poster of him on my wall when I was in grade school.
“Don’t tell anyone though.” He laughed and ran his hand over his head again.
“You look truly different without the hair.”
“I know. I’m trying to get used to it myself.” He laughed self-consciously. “No one’s mistaking me for a surfer now.”