Chapter 8

I cleaned up before heading out for lunch when Sean approached me. "Want to get lunch together today? It's been a while since we had lunch off at the same time."

"Can't, I have other plans today." I didn't want to elaborate on it, so I quickly changed the topic. "Give Logan a call and see if he wants to. Apparently he's feeling a little ignored."

"Oh, man! It has been a while since I've seen him. When did you see him?"

"Last night a the gym. He was giving me shit and told me to tell you it's summer and you no longer have an excuse."

Sean laughed. "Shit. It wasn't like I was the only one busy with classes." Sean started to wash his hands. "Guess I'll give a Logan call, but next time you have to come." I nodded my head in agreement. It's been a while since the three of us got together. "By the way, I could use your help on a customized paint job. Billy said it was okay."

I dried my hands on the towel. "You actually need my help with a paint job?" Sean major was in art and his favorite median was cars, although he liked to work with a variety of other mediums as well. A lot of people drove far just for him to do a customize job.

He shrugged his shoulders. "More like the customer. He'll be here after lunch. You'll understand then."

"The 'you don't get me' type again?" I chuckled at the memory of the last customer. Sean punched my arm with his wet fist not so lightly.

"That was not my fault! He didn't get himself. Now I'm telling you nothing about the customer. It'll be a surprise."

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I waited for Joe out in the lobby with customers waiting for their cars to be finished worked on. As I waited, I asked some of the customers how they felt about the service they received here. I wanted to get an idea of what my dad's customers liked. I heard nothing but positive reviews and one lady went so far as to say she came especially here so she could watch good looking guys work on her car. I expected I would only hear positive things considering that my dad kept an eye on this particular shop.

The lady who came just for the good looking guys leaned over and whispered in my ear, "You see that blond hair man with the gorgeous hazel eyes who just came out of the garage? He sort of has that rugged look going on. " I looked over and saw Joe. "I come here to see him. He makes the prefect eye candy." Joe spotted me and headed over.

When he approached us, I heard the woman gasp before holding her breath. I turned my head slightly so she couldn't catch me rolling my eyes. Joe gave me a puzzle look when saw me do this. "Are you ready?" he asked.

I nodded my head. "Yeah, let's go." I got up and turned to the lady who was gawking at us, well, at Joe. I smiled at her, "Thank you for your time. I really appreciated it." Then left with Joe. We walked down the street towards the area with a bunch of places to eat at.

When we were out of earshot Joe asked, "What was that about?"

"What was what about?"

"The eye roll."

I laughed. "Did you not see the lady next to me?"

He thought about it. "The lady that looked like she was about to faint?"

I nodded my head. "I was rolling my eyes at her. I bet she's the type to faint when she makes eye contact with her idol." I looked up at Joe and grinned. "Good thing you didn't make eye contact with her."

He winced at the thought. "Oh, she's that lady." He gave me a smile that made my heart beat faster. "I'm impressed that you figured her out."

"It wasn't hard," I mumbled not sure if I should take it as a compliment or an insult. Then it dawns on me. "Wait, she really fainted on you?"

Joe nodded his head. "It was back when I helped deal with the customers. It was the first time I had someone faint on me." Obviously he knew that he attracted the opposite gender easily, but he didn't let it go to his head or flaunt it. "I thought she was ill, but Billy told me later the real reason why. I still think she is ill." Keyword, is, not was. "But thanks to her among others, my contact with customers are minimum especially with female."

I couldn't help but laugh and was still laughing when we enter a Chinese restaurant. We didn't have to wait for a table and after the waitress left, I was only giggling a little. "Man, I can only imagine what could of happen for you to have minimum contact. Sounds surreal."

"Nothing like what you're thinking. I prefer it that way and it wasn't hard to get Billy to agree after a while." Joe took a sip of his coke. Unfortunately for me, I could see why girls would go crazy over Joe. Just being around him made my heart flutter. "So, what's up with that guy last night? Alex wasn't it? Was he really a family friend?" Of course he asked about that. I didn't want to tell Joe, but I owe him some sort of explanation. It was thanks to Alex that I caused Joe trouble not once, but twice.

I nodded my head. "Yeah, that's true. His family and my family are close, so we have known each other our whole lives. He's also my uh, ex-boyfriend and he wanted to talk last night."

Joe didn't say anything for a few seconds. I didn't want to go into detail, but if he asked I would. God, I would tell him everything. Everything I didn't even tell Amelia. That scared me. I only knew him for a couple of days, but already I felt safe and comfortable around him because of a couple of incidents. That wasn't normal nor safe. I blamed it on his good looks. He shouldn't be allowed to look so good.

"So, did you solve my so call food problem?"

A wave of relief washed over me. I couldn't help but smile. "Well, you could eat those frozen dinners, but they taste bad even though they smell good. So, either you make the time to cook or hire a cook who can grocery shop for you as well." I took a sip of my drink.

"The cook is out of question, if I can't afford a cell phone then I can't afford a cook. "

"You should really get a cell phone, I can only imagine how frustrating it is to get hold of you. The cook problem is an easy problem to solve, just get a girlfriend. It'll give them an excuse to come over and see you after work."

"As I said, a cook is out of the question." I opened my mouth to say something but he cut me off. "Generally, girlfriends require too much attention then I can or want to give them. And the ones who would cook every night are generally the too clingy types and I can't stand them."

"Another words you're going to stay single your whole life?" I was right about him not having a girlfriend, but I didn't know he saw them as hassles.

"Doubt it. I'll probably find a girl that I like and can stand to be around a long period."

The waitress came over and asked for our order. As we order, I could see the waitress checking Joe out, staying close to him, making constant eye contact, wanting to draw his attention to her. Either he was oblivious or ignoring her as she ordered. He sent no signals other than 'I want to eat.' When the waitress left, I could tell she wasn't giving up. Apparently, the fact that he was with another girl didn't phase her.

"What kind of girlfriends did you have in the past for you not to be able to stand girls?"

"Didn't say I couldn't stand girls. I have a couple of friends that are girls. I just can't stand most of the ones that want to be my girlfriend or more than friends, whatever they want to call it."

I rolled my eyes as I took a sip of my drink. "I bet a lot of guys don't want to be in your shoes," I said sarcastically. I saw a ghost of a smile on his lips before he took a sip of his coke to hide it. The conversation shifted to me attending college then to work where it stayed until we were at work again.

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I had only been back from lunch for an hour when Sean dragged me away to meet his customer. "Bad news, she dragged the boss's daughter into it."

"You did not say it was a she earlier, you refer to the customer as a he!" I was getting a bad feeling about this.

"If I had told you it was a girl, you would've outright refused to help and I really need your help."

Sean knew me too well. "And how does Alyssa factor into this?"

"Like hell I know. Billy gave me a heads up."

We shut up when we enter the hall and headed towards the open door next to the office. When we enter the room Alyssa and the mystery female customer was sitting together at one end of the table.

Sean introduced us. "Joe, this is the customer I was telling you about, Amber. Amber, Joe. And I believe we are all acquainted with Alyssa."

I leaned over the table with my hand out towards Amber. We shook hands as I smiled and said, "Hi, nice to meet you Amber." Then Sean and I took a seat across from them. I really wished I knew what I was getting involved in.

Amber was young, probably in her early twenties, skinny, with long brown hair, and brown eyes, a type of woman that most guys would like. In this case, it made me wary of her since she looked too young to be able to afford the job.

It looked like neither Sean nor Amber was going to say anything to get this going. So, I smiled again. "So, is there a problem?"

"Yes, there is." Amber pointed her finger at Sean. "Him."

I was a little shocked by this. "Sean? How?"

Amber leaned back in her chair and crossed her arm. "I paid a lot of money to have a professional do it, not an amateur."

I knew Sean was keeping a straight face, acting as if this didn't bother him. Only his hand clinching his knee under the table gave him away. Sean hated when people questioned his skills because he was young. Now I understood why I was handling this and not Billy. "Have you've been shown pictures of his work?"

She nodded her head. "Only pictures, not in person. You can't trust pictures, you need to see it in person to confirm if it's really good. Isn't that right, Alyssa?"

"Amber!" Alyssa looked uncomfortable. She shot Sean an apologetic glance. "You dragged me in because of this? It's my dad's business and he always has an eye on this place. You think he would allow someone other than a professional do the work?"

Amber didn't seem to be phased by this revelation. "I know and that's why I came here, but it concerns me that he keeps an eye on this and makes me wonder why." She quickly glanced at Sean. Sean didn't miss it. "Besides how do I not know that perhaps he isn't keeping such a strict eye and the quality is poor right now? He seems to be a little busy looking for suitable marriage partners for his daughters. One already fell apart thanks to your sister marrying that lawyer. He's probably out looking for the next one."

Alyssa clinched her jaw looking a little upset. It seemed clear now that they weren't really friends. "That has nothing to do with this."

Amber gave a wicked smile. "Don't think you have years before your next. Unlike your sister, I highly doubt you'll go against your father with his choice. I bet you'll be jumping with glee." This was turning ugly fast and not about the paint job.

"So you only question Sean's ability to give you your money's worth?" Amber nodded her head giving me a menacing look for interrupting. If I wanted this to end smoothly, I had to turn up the game a little. It was time to be 'charming.' Making eye contact, I smiled. Not the polite smile I've been doing, but a real smile. Amber's expression almost changed instantly and I knew I had her hooked, hopefully not too hooked. "I give you my word that Sean is one of the best around and you'll have a great quality at the end. If it's not up to your standard when he's finished, we fixed it free of charge. If it still doesn't satisfy your taste, then we'll go into negotiations to see what we can do to make you happy. Do those terms agree with you?"

Amber's face brightens as she smiled. I knew I had her. "Oh, yes. I trust your words. I do have high standards." She looked at Sean when she said the last part then looked at me giving me a smile telling me that she was also referring to me.

I stood up and smiled. "We are in agreement then. Now if you would go with Sean, he will take you to another room to fill out the necessary paperwork."

Amber stood up, checking me out as she did so. We shook hands. "It was a pleasure to do business with you. I hope I have the pleasure of doing business with you again in the future." She was sure to make eye contact as she smiled, hinting at what she really meant.

I smiled back. "We hope to see you in the future too." With that, Sean led Amber away to his office to finish the deal leaving Alyssa and me alone in the room.

Alyssa was staring at me. She still looked a little upset from earlier. "I bet you use that charm to get yourself out of all sorts of messes."

I couldn't suppress a smile. She clearly knew what I was doing. "Comes in handy." I turned to leave when Alyssa called out my name. "Yeah?"

"Thanks."


A/N: So when I was rereading the chapters I realize that there's a show called Melissa and Joey. I have story with Alysssa and Joe. Pure coincidence since I started the story way before the show and the movie.