Strings Attached - Chapter Three
“...and so I said to her, I said ‘Darling, everyone knows they’re fake boobies, you all have the same surgeon’!” Michael, Quinn’s PA spoke loudly to a group he was entertaining.
He burst into high pitched laughter and reached behind him to take a mini prawn wrap from the platter George was holding.
George held the tray closer to him as she looked across the room at Adam.
He looked so grown up tonight, so manly, not at all the little boy she remembered running around the house dressed as Batman. She swallowed a lump in her throat as he caught her eye and smiled, holding aloft an almost empty tray.
“Have you tried one of these prawn things? Have you? What are they called George? This is George everybody, she is the MD of ‘Finger Food’ who will be catering every party I organise from now on if I get my way.” Michael spoke, turning to her.
“It’s prawn and Tabasco.” George informed.
“Who would have thought it? I mean prawn and Tabasco; I would never have thought it.” Michael said, shaking his head in admiration.
George watched as Adam handed out canapés to the guests and she saw him offer one to Quinn Blake. The musician took another chilli pork parcel and Adam said something to him that made him laugh and smile. Quinn offered Adam his hand and the two men became engaged in conversation, both surrounded by the group of beautiful women that seemed to swarm around Quinn like wasps around an open can of coke.
“So are you going to cater for me? I need you to cater for me.” Michael insisted, bringing George back to his conversation.
“I’d be delighted to but I am pretty booked up, I mean...” George started.
“Cancel them! Cancel them all, we will pay you twice what they are paying you, no, make that three times, in fact, name your price! We have another four nights of concerts here, could you cater the after shows? Vary the menu? Whip up some new creations for every night? Could you George? It would make me so happy? Look at all these happy smiley people and your very empty silver dishes. They all have expressions of deep delight because of your marvellous culinary expertise.” Michael rambled on.
“Well, I guess...” George started.
“Marvellous! Great, that’s settled, now tomorrow night I would quite like to see what you can do with lamb. I like a bit of lamb, but not with anything minty, too tart, surprise me.” Michael ordered her, letting out a hearty laugh.
“OK.” George answered, wracking her brain for a long forgotten about recipe.
“Goody!” Michael said, clapping his hands together in delight.
It was 3.00am before all the guests had gone. The Hexagon staff had finished tidying the bar area and George, Helen and Curly Shirley were almost at the end of clearing up the kitchen.
“Van’s loaded up, ready to go; waitresses have gone off in taxis and Tom’s gone on to another party. Some ex girlfriend of his wants to rekindle things I think.” Adam informed as he re-entered the kitchen.
“OK, well Helen and Cur… I mean Shirley, why don’t you go with Adam and Marisa in the van, I can finish tidying up here.” George ordered her.
“Oh George are you sure? I mean...” Helen began, putting down a tea towel.
“Boss says go Helen you don’t quibble about it.” Shirley remarked, grabbing hold of her arm.
“Helen you look knackered and you’re heading up the 65th birthday party tomorrow afternoon. Go home, get some sleep and I don’t want to see you until at least 10.00. And Shirley, thanks for all your help.” George said.
“Thank you George, but are you sure, I could just....” Helen started.
“Put the cloth down darlin’.” Shirley ordered.
“Adam, take the women home will you?”
“I’ll drop them off and come back for you.” Adam told her.
“No, you go home and get some sleep too, you’ve had a busy enough day and you really helped me out tonight. I’ll come round for the van later.” George told him.
“If you’re sure, but don’t walk George it’s too late, get a cab.” Adam instructed her.
“I’m the grown up here.” George reminded.
“OK, we’re going. See you later.” Adam said linking arms with Helen and Shirley.
“See you and thanks again.” George told them.
“Come on girls, which nightclub we going to hit? Have you tried ‘Strikers’ Shirley? They play some great retro Eighties stuff.” Adam joked, making the women laugh and immediately protest.
George waited for them to go and then ran over to the fridge and swung open the door. She grabbed at an ice cold bottle of lager she had been coveting all night. She didn’t know who it belonged to, she didn’t care. She took the lid off it with a bottle opener, put it to her lips and took a long, deep swig. She closed her eyes and let the cool, refreshing taste fill her throat. She so deserved this, she was totally wiped out, exhausted beyond belief.
When she opened her eyes she jumped and almost dropped the bottle. Quinn Blake was stood right in front of her.
“Oh, shit, sorry! I didn’t think anyone was left up here, I was just finishing the clearing up.” George spoke, putting the bottle down on the side and picking up a dishcloth.
“Do you mind?” Quinn asked, picking up the bottle.
George waited to see what he was going to do.
He circled it in his hands and put it to his mouth, taking a mouthful of liquid and swallowing it down.
“I thought everyone had gone.” George repeated as Quinn put the bottle down and just looked at her. There was no denying he was devastatingly attractive.
“Everyone has.” he replied, moving closer to her.
“Then, what are you still doing here?” George inquired, her breathing quickening as he stood just inches away from her.
“Looking for you.” Quinn answered, his eyes not leaving hers.
Before George could react to what he had said his lips were on hers and she was backed up against the worktop, the pressure of his body against hers.
She kissed him back, losing herself in the moment, enjoying the way he was holding her, feeling out of control.
And then there was the sound of voices and he pulled away and moved across the room just before Michael burst into the kitchen, waving his hands excitedly.
“Ah here you are Quinn, Roger’s phoned, AGAIN! Was concerned you weren’t back at the hotel. I am your personal escort, the car is waiting, chop chop.” Michael spoke, opening the door to the function room.
“I was just talking to George about the catering; I wanted her to tell me what her secret was.” Quinn said, his eyes still looking deep into George’s.
“That is completely unethical as well you know and we will find out the extent of George’s talents over the next few nights, she’s catering all the after shows here.” Michael informed him.
“I can’t wait.” Quinn answered, smiling at her.
George was dumbstruck, unable to speak or move or even breathe. She just kept looking at Quinn, unable to believe what had just happened.
“Right, so, tally forth Quinn, another big day tomorrow, see you tomorrow George, don’t forget a foray of lamb.” Michael spoke as he led the way out of the room.
“See you tomorrow.” Quinn said, smiling at George.
“Bye.” George managed to reply stiffly.
And then they were gone.
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