Home > Trust Me Forever

Trust Me Forever
Author: Josie Bordeaux

One

 

 

Alex

 

 

Between the timid smile and the shy way she approached customers, I doubted the new waitress at my favorite bar was the girl I used to know. Sarah’s personality didn’t match Cory’s at all. Yet something about her—except her hair and the small scar under her right eye—reminded me of Cory. Watching her serve customers, my eyes lingered on her longer than a casual glance. I was completely entranced by everything about her. Her pale complexion was virtually flawless except for the scar and the cute little freckles peppering the bridge of her nose. Maybe my attraction to her was because she was sexy as hell and didn’t realize it. Or maybe the sight of her brought back my cherished memories of Cory.

My older brother, Jay, always told me, It’s always the quiet ones that’ll hit you the hardest. Watching Sarah, I realized he was probably right. Oddly enough, Jay was the one I was waiting on that night. I’d never believed him, especially since I was usually attracted to women that were more confident—the women who made advances toward me and enjoyed showcasing their assets. It could also be that it made for an easy chase.

Sarah’s hand tugged at the white top again. She was uncomfortable, that was obvious. I tried to determine if she was usually so fidgety or if it was the waitress uniform that made her seem so awkward. Most likely, it was the uniform. Hell, I’d even helped pick it out. Tommy, the owner of The Freckled Maiden, hadn’t been able to make up his mind if he wanted a German hofbrauhaus or an Irish pub. He’d settled on an Irish pub, but had the waitresses wear skimpy German costumes, which he insisted were sexier with white thigh-high nylons. The nylons were actually my idea.

“You know…” Cassie interrupted my thoughts and blocked my view by standing in front of the table. “You’re coming off as a creeper.”

“What?” Finally pulling my eyes away from Sarah, I tried to register what Cassie had said to me.

“A creeper. You keep staring at our new waitress, and now you look like one of those stalker types.” Cassie’s thick Southern accent was shadowed by her sweet smile—followed by her jutting out her hip, giving her hand a place to rest.

That was another thing: Sarah didn’t have a Southern accent like most of the women in Atlanta. I knew she was from out of town, but none of us could get a straight answer out of her as to where she came from. Which was another clue Sarah might be Cory, the girl who broke my heart so many years ago.

I shook my head and grabbed my beer. Cassie had always been a great friend, so I valued her opinion. It was the reason why I kept my mouth shut and just listened.

“Although the creeper thing seems to be pretty popular in most romance books, but you’re not a billionaire. Yet.”

After realizing I had a hard time peeling my eyes away from watching Sarah again, I decided Cassie made a great point.

“Cassie, I told you, Sarah reminds me of someone. I know you guys are all joking that she’s probably some one-night stand I’ve had, but I think it’s something else. I—”

“Well, whatever you do, don’t pull one of your pranks on her. The girl is skittish enough.”

That got my attention. Although I could tell Sarah seemed sheepish, I wasn’t sure about her being fearful. “How so?”

Cassie leaned in and whispered as best as she could above the noisy bar. “I think she’s got an ex she’s hiding from or something. I haven’t figured it out yet, but she seems like she’s always looking over her shoulder.”

I watched the woman we were talking about appear from the back hallway, retying her apron. My eyes roamed down to her short skirt and creamy thighs. Bending her over a nearby table was becoming a huge fantasy playing out in my mind.

“You’re doing it again,” Cassie said as she swatted my arm and chuckled.

My eyes darted back to Cassie. “Why’d she take the job?” I knew the question was out of the blue, but damn, Sarah looked so uncomfortable and out of place, I couldn’t imagine her jumping at the job after trying on the uniform.

“Just like the rest of us in here—we need the money. This place might not be one of the upper-side places, but it brings in pretty good cash, especially with all your construction workers wanting to blow their checks here.” She sighed and tapped my arm. “Just quit staring so much. She was asking about you and said you make her uneasy.”

“Me?” I jerked back. “I make her uneasy?” I had always thought I was an approachable guy.

“Yeah, that’s what I said. Look, you know you’re in her seating area and she doesn’t even want to serve you. That’s saying a lot.”

My eyes found Sarah again. Our eyes met briefly before she immediately cast them back down to look at her order pad. I watched her hand shake. “Send her over.”

“What?” Cassie pulled her eyebrows in as if I was speaking another language.

“You heard me.”

“Okay.” She sighed. “But no playing pranks on her. I’m telling you she’s not like that.”

I nodded, not really taking her advice. Who isn’t into having a little fun? I downed the rest of my beer so I’d at least have something to say to her and then waited. I pretended to watch one of the twenty TVs but kept glancing over to the bar area to finally see Cassie talking to Sarah. I watched Sarah’s eyes flashed to mine briefly before she looked back at Cassie and nodded.

After Sarah disappeared into the kitchen for what seemed like forever, she finally emerged. Smoothing over the apron and pressing her lips together, she walked toward my table. Unable to help it, I observed her again as she made her way to my table. Her makeup wasn’t as heavy as it had been the night before and I couldn’t stop staring into her big, round, coffee-colored eyes. Damn, those eyes. Mocha with flecks of gold—she had to be Cory. My God, she was beautiful. My heart flipped and suddenly I felt like I was a teenage boy about to talk to Cory again. Then I remembered what she had done to me and my stomach sank.

“Need another beer?” She kept her eyes averted as she stood next to my table and fidgeted with the pen in her hand.

I kept my eyes on hers even though she wasn’t looking at me. I debated coming right out and asking her if she was the Cory I knew, but something inside of me told me she’d never admit it if she was. Maybe a friendly dance around the subject might help. “Have you ever lived in Ohio?”

She pretended to study the rest of the bar, but I watched her swallow and her cheeks turned red. “I’ve lived in a lot of places.” Her voice was quiet but had a small sense of resolve. She straightened her back and tilted her chin up. “Why are you asking?”

“I used to know a girl up there. I keep thinking you might be her,” I challenged.

Her lips pressed together in a tight line, and I couldn’t decipher what emotion flashed over her eyes. It wasn’t anger. Was it pain? “Couldn’t be me. You don’t look familiar.” She exhaled a breath as if she wished she hadn’t snapped at me. “Do you want another beer?”

I smiled and handed her my mug. “Please.”

As she took it and turned, I watched her shake her head and it only made me chuckle. Cory used to do that same thing whenever she was upset about something. It had to be her. So why did she just lie to me?

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