Chapter 6: Dinner

I looked myself over in the mirror. My green eyes really stood out again the brown patterned dress and my sun bleached hair, which I had put into a messy braid that lay on my right shoulder with my bangs were pinned back. My make up was neutral and soft, accentuating my pretty skin. I had tanned today, sitting in the warm California sun. I had put lotion on my legs, making them glitter in the right light, and my lips were glossed. I was ready.

“Kelly, come on! We are going to be late.” Rick hollered from the front room. I let out a sigh and grabbed my clutch purse. I entered the foyer and laid eyes upon Justin, which stopped me dead in my tracks. He was in black slacks, a deep maroon button up with a black bowtie and a black jacket. His hair, normally hidden under a ball cap, was combed cleanly with shaved sides and his goatee was trimmed. He was utterly handsome. He looked me up and down and his mouth opened a bit.

“Wow, Kelly. You look, well, sort of amazing.” He stumbled through his sentence and I blushed, looking down.

“You two ready?” Rick rushed us out the door and we all climbed into his truck, which had cleaned out so it wasn’t full of horse tack and feed. We arrived after a quiet drive to a very fancy restaurant called The Derby. It was very elegant inside, with bright reds, exposed brick and wood, all aged to perfection, and the lighting was set for romance, even though our dinner was of no such kind.

“Rick!” I heard the familiar ditzy voice that came from May’s lips. She jumped out of the booth and planted a kiss on my father’s lips, in front of everyone. Justin and I exchanged annoyed looks and then smiled at the other folks in the booth.

“So glad you all could make it. Rick, whom did you bring with you? I see Justin all dressed up, but who is this gorgeous young lady?” The handsome man stood up and smiled down at me. He was very tall, trimmed blonde hair, and a clean face. He extended his hand, which I accepted, shaking it softly.

“Mr. Roberts, this is my daughter Kelly. She just moved here from Montana.” He smiled at me and helped me into the booth. Justin followed and smiled at me. He hadn’t stopped smiling since I had emerged from my room at the house. Mr. Roberts introduced his wife, Victoria, before striking up a conversation with my father about the races today. He had hit big on the colt, which I guessed, paid a nice price to win, but was not happy with his filly’s performance. He was hoping she would be more precocious in her debut. After a three-hour social dinner, all of us were ready to depart for home, as it was almost eleven thirty in the evening. We all said our goodbyes, left the restaurant in separate parties, and this time, May followed us to the house. I gave Justin another look. Rick and May went into the house first, leaving Justin and I behind.

“What does he see in her?” We slowly walked up the walkway.

“She has a horse with him and I think they just started spending time together. This is the first woman I have seen him with in the two years I have known him, so I’m not sure if he is just lonely or if he really likes her.”

“She just seems very ditzy. She is the stereotypical high-maintenance California, Beverly Hills wife.” Justin chuckled and we stopped at the door. I turned to face him and he smiled down at me.

“Well Miss Kelly, I had a splendid time tonight. I am glad I decided to escort you to dinner.” He attempted a British accent, but butchered it with a laugh. I smiled and looked down.

“It was better than I had thought. Thank you for joining me. Goodnight. I will see you tomorrow.” I turned and walked into the house, leaving him on the porch. As I closed my door, I heard him close the front door, locking it behind him. I had been in California not even a week and I was already thinking of a boy when I got home at night. What was happening to me? I had never thought of a boy, ever. I had never even liked a boy. I dressed for bed and fell asleep almost instantly.

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