Oh, look. New story!! This will be book 2 in my Lake Point Series, Deep Fried Sweethearts. Michaela O’Keefe (31) opened her dream restaurant, The Midway, a few years after an ugly divorce.
It serves fair food only (deep fried anything, cotton candy, pork tenderloin, etc) and has a couple of carnival games that change out monthly. Unfortunately, the business has also worn her down so she places an ad for an assistant manager. She doesn’t expect Owen Duncan – aka ‘Dunc’ to apply…a (very attractive) man 10 years her junior that her bff in high school used to babysit.
And here is where Dunc applies for the position. Mikey wants only to get a grip on her inability to hide her blushing…
As always this is un-edited mostly, so forgive any errors:
Another knock disrupted her train of thought. “Excuse me, Miss O’Keefe?” Of course, if her business thoughts had to be disrupted, what better way than with Owen Duncan, better known simply as Dunc. Ten years her junior, he’d grown up into quite a looker.
She could remember joking with her friend, Eve, five years ago about Dunc being jail bait for women like them. Now he was legal and even better looking with azure eyes, mussed blond hair and a crooked smile that she bet had melted the panties off of many girls in his class. Just when she realized she’d been staring and jolted out of her reverie, he rewarded her with that grin, and she swore her heart skipped a beat. She shook her head to clear it. “Yes, Dunc?”
“I saw your ad. Jake suggested I try for it, I’ve been looking for something permanent instead of odd jobs.” Dunc crossed the room and held out some paperwork. “Application, resume, and a few letters of recommendation.”
“You want the assistant manager position?” Try though she might, Michaela couldn’t keep the doubt from her voice. She flipped through the papers.
“Yes. I’m not in school any longer, I need something full time. Floating odd jobs isn’t bad, but I’d like something permanent.” He leaned on the desk, and her gaze immediately flew to the flex of muscle in his forearms. “I hope you’ll at least look at my resume, you might be surprised.”
“Letters from Jake and Eve both?” She pursed her lips. Jake owned the antique shop in town, Past Over, Eve was his manager. “Overkill, don’t you think?”
“Can’t ever have too many letters of recommendation. Miss Ellery insisted.”
She knew if she looked up that damn grin would do her in, so she kept her focus on the papers before her. After she’d flipped through the stack of letters, she set them on the desk. “I’ll look this over and we’ll meet on Monday for a proper interview. I’ll allow you that.”
“Thanks, Miss O’Keefe. You won’t regret it.” He held out his hand. When she responded with her own, his warm hand folded hers in a gentle, but firm handshake.
“Easy, Dunc. I haven’t given you the job yet.” She could swear the heat of his hand travelled up to flood her cheeks. If she did give him the job, it would be rough working alongside such eye candy. Especially with how easily she blushed.
“I know. Let’s just say I’ve got a good feeling.”
So do I. Oops, hush your inner voice. She had no doubt she was blushing now, but forced herself to smile and nod. “We’ll see if it stays. Monday at nine work for you? I’d like to get it over with before I open for the day.”
“Nine sharp. Thanks.” He released her hand and ran his hand through his tousled locks. The kid knew he had it going on. Damn him. “See you then.”
“See you then.” Michaela stood until Dunc left the room, and proceeded to drop into her chair with a groan. “I’m so screwed, and I’m going to kill Eve if she sent him here.”
It would be tough to turn him down, and not just for his looks. Her quick perusal of his resume had impressed her. An associate’s degree in business beat out the lack of a true steady job for several years.
The stack of letters from half the business owners in town worked against her resolve to not hire someone so young. Not age discrimination, but experience.
After her divorce and the hellish two years after, the idea for the business had pulled her out of the hole. She’d worked hard for two long years to get the plan in place and the financing. Every bit of her heart and soul had been poured into The Midway.
She wasn’t sure if she should risk it on an inexperienced young man.
Unfortunately, she couldn’t go on like she was, either. The Midway had grown into a successful business in the past year, but she was pulling one-hundred-twenty hour weeks to keep it viable.
She needed the help badly, like yesterday.
Right then her best option was Dunc. Young, inexperienced Dunc. The rest of her staff was high school students or college students or grandmothers that couldn’t, or wouldn’t, take on the full time work week an assistant manager position would mean.
The ad she’d placed in her desperation had garnered very few worthwhile candidates.
Then along came Dunc.
She wondered if there was a pill that would control blushing. One double-entendre and she’d be done for.
Hope you enjoyed it! Click on the Tuesday Tales badge to see more excellent entries!!