Rough Rider: A Biker Erotic Romance

Rough Rider: A Biker Erotic Romance by Tamara Knowles Read Free Book Online

Book: Rough Rider: A Biker Erotic Romance by Tamara Knowles Read Free Book Online
Authors: Tamara Knowles
    Hannah Kent cleaned the counter top for the hundredth time and watched the second hand of the big, old-fashioned clock move slowly toward the twelve. Finally, a loud click announced its arrival and she said aloud, “Practice time!”
    It was now officially 8:30 pm and she could begin practicing her foam animals and designs. The Morning Star Coffee Shop closed at 9:00 pm, but it was rare to have a customer after 7:00 pm. This part of town was almost totally office buildings and was fairly deserted once the office workers went home for the day. Some of the cubicle rats worked late into the night, but when they finally left, they weren’t interested in stopping for a cup of high-priced coffee on their way home.
    The machines at Morning Star were all computer-controlled, so a barista only needed to know how to select the right button for the espresso order. Even the latte art was computer-generated, so that the cup vibrated and shook in an exact pattern, as the thick, steaming milk mixture was added to the top of the latte. A trained monkey could probably do this job as well as a struggling college coed and the wages reflected that fact.
    Just around the corner was another coffee shop that did not use the computer-controlled espresso machines. For some reason, people were willing to pay several dollars more per cup for espresso created by a skilled barista rather than the pulsing of a transistor.
    Hannah had a choice of twelve buttons that ranged in color from light brown to black. There was also a choice of eight different patterns that could be applied in the latte foam. All of it was automatic, requiring absolutely no skill. Plus, it fed directly into the cash register, so that the only decision the trained monkey made was to correctly select which cup went with which order from a list on the screen.
    But at 8:30, a half-hour before closing, the computer put the cash register into cleaning mode. Anything that cycled through the machines after 8:30 was assumed to be part of the cleaning process and was ignored. In the rare event that an order was placed after that time, it would be prepared by hand, and then entered manually into the cash register.
    Since it only took about ten minutes to clean all of the machines, Hannah had twenty minutes to practice manually making espresso and manually forming her foam figures on the top. A skilled barista could make two or three times her current salary just around the corner or at any of the dozen or so up-scale coffee shops in town. She hoped to be hired at one of them once she refined her timing and foam skills.
    Actually, Hannah’s true hope was that she would become one of the cubicle rats on the other side of the counter. In fact, getting her business degree in accounting from the local college was why she was now in debt.
    Graduation came and went with no job offers; but, her student loans were due. She realized that she needed a job, even if it wasn’t in her desired field of study. She had tried bartending for a short time while still in school, but she didn’t keep that on her resume. She tried not to keep it in her memory either. It was something she would rather forget. The uniform was relatively skimpy and the customers were mostly drunken college students who were more interested in getting her into bed than tipping her for her bartending services.
    The final straw was when the owner told her that she was too beautiful to be behind the bar. He said, “It’s making the other waitresses jealous that you are getting more tips. Besides, you could earn a lot more money on the pole.”
    The pole he was referring to was located in the club, the other half of his establishment. State liquor laws prohibited nudity in a place where alcoholic beverages were served, but there was nothing preventing it in the room next door, especially since there were separate entrances.
    Patrons entered the building through a single

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