Hard Luck (The Vegas Obsession Series, #1)
the unexpected in stride. Shit. Maybe Drew was the right choice after all.
    I finished up and was getting ready to leave for the day, when Monica came and stood at my desk. She just looked at me and said nothing, like she was surveying a situation.
    “What’s up?” I asked.
    “I’m curious about something.”
    I put down the pile of papers I was holding, waiting for her to continue.
    “I’ll bite,” I answered when she didn’t continue. “What has you so curious?”
    “Him...” she motioned with her head in the opposite direction.
    I turned to see that Monica was referring to Drew. He was busy talking with another co-worker. Her name was Samantha, but everyone called her Sam because she was like one of the guys. However, her looks proved that she definitely wasn’t a guy. I could tell that Drew noticed her too. He was flirty with her. Typical male, trying to get in everyone’s pants.
    “Huh?” I said, turning back to look at Monica when she called my name.
    “I thought I lost you there,” Monica said and laughed. “So, what’s going on between you two? I didn’t know the man existed before today and he already seems so into you.”
    “I have no idea what you’re talking about. Look at him now. He’s flirting with Sam. How can he be into me?”
    “I saw you guys talking earlier. You can’t deny it, missy. There’s no way that was the first time you met each other. You forget how long I’ve known you? I’m not blind. There was definitely some chemistry going on.”
    “You have got to be kidding me, Monica.,” I relented. “Nothing’s going on between us, except for maybe hatred. He stole the job I wanted. Have you forgotten that?”
    I could see that Monica still had a lot of questions by the way she was gawking.
    “So, does this hate relationship also have a jealousy clause?”
    “Jealousy?” I scoffed at that. There was no jealousy. Monica was reading into things... as always.
    “You can lie to me if you want, but I could tell the conversation you had with him earlier got heated. You were definitely talking about something important and just then...”
    Again, she motioned toward Drew and Sam with her chin.
    “You can’t tell me you aren’t a wee bit curious as to what they are talking about. It’s written all over your face.”
    Curiosity doesn’t equal jealousy, I thought, even though there was a nagging question in my mind about whether he and Sam would hook up. It was just a thought. It didn’t mean I was jealous. How could I be? I already didn’t like the guy.
    “You want to know the truth? I’ll tell you the truth. Yes, Drew and I have had a couple encounters. I bumped into him when he came in here to talk to Mr. Barkley two days ago. We didn’t even talk, except to apologize for bumping into each other. And then, yesterday, Mr. Barkley had me take his employment contract over to his apartment. Today, he was the one to come over to my cube and talk to me. I listened to what he had to say, and then wished him good luck. That’s it.”
    I paused. I didn’t tell her the part where he called me a nobody, or his offer to make me dinner, but I wasn’t ready to admit anything more. With Monica, it would be like throwing kindling into a fireplace full of logs. I’d not hear the end of it for weeks.
    “So where does the hate come into the equation?” Monica asked.
    I couldn’t believe she was being so naïve.
    “He stole my job. I thought we already covered that.”
    “Oh yeah... silly me,” she answered. “Are you heading out for the day?”
    I nodded, looking down at the papers in my hand. “I just want to get these to Barkley.”
    “Okay. I’ll see you Monday, but call me okay? We should do something this weekend.” She gave me an encouraging smile and took off toward her dressing room.
    I turned back to Drew and Sam, and took the files right by them to Mr. Barkley’s office. He wasn’t around, so I left it on his desk and retuned to mine. I wished Monica hadn’t

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