Routine-loving, responsible Evelyn is shocked when Noah, the young and attractive waiter from her favorite restaurant, asks her out. She's secretly attracted to him, but the prospect of dating a younger man terrifies her. Will Noah be able to prove that a seven-year age gap is nothing when it comes to love? Jenna has been dodging her best friend Evelyn's attempts to set her up with her brother, Adam, when a call to a wrong number puts her in touch with a stranger she only knows as West Coast-and with whom she develops a magnetic connection. Who is he, and is he worth pursuing? When Adam crashes a holiday weekend, Jenna discovers her best friend's brother Adam isn't the momma's boy she always assumed he was. But will his sudden appearance destroy her chance to meet the charming and mysterious West Coast? Who will she choose?
Totally Uncalled For
Evelyn held her pea coat a little tighter against her body as she entered Nathan's Pub. She made a beeline for the impatient looking, petite brunette sitting at the bar fiddling with her cell phone.
Jenna looked up just as her blonde friend entered her peripherals. "Finally! I've been here for 25 minutes, Evie. I was getting ready to text you I was leaving."
Evelyn ripped her coat off and put it over the back of her bar stool before climbing up to sit. "Sorry! I got a call from my brother and he sounded upset about his job so I - -"
"Of course, you did." Jenna swiveled away to face the bar with an eye roll.
"No listen, Jen--"
"Ugh. Here we go."
"He was upset about the way things were at work. He needed my advice. You know I would never turn anyone away that asked me for help."
The brunette spun on the stool to face her friend, "Have you considered that by being at his beck and call you're actually doing a disservice? Adam is, what, twenty-five now? Let him figure it out."
Evie gave her a pointed look. "I seem to recall another twenty-something needing my help at work a couple years ago."
"That's not the same thing and we aren't talking about me. We're talking about your brother. How about we stop doing that and we discuss fixing your non-existent love life?"
"Redirection. Nice try. But honestly, Jen, you're tougher than most people. He's still just a kid. And he didn't inherit my father's business acumen." Evelyn looked around for the bartender, "Where's Nathan? NATHAN!"
"Happy Friday, Ladies," smiled Nathan with an impish glimmer in his eye. His attention landed on Jenna. "What's your pleasure?"
"Scotch on the rocks."
His eyes moved to Evie, "And I guess you'll want a light beer. Nothing stronger? I got a fresh shipment of Bombay Sapphire in."
Evie deadpanned. "And risk another Gin and Tonic fiasco of 2015."
"Aw, come on. Live a little. You were so much fun back then."
"I barely survived that fun. Just a light beer please, Nathan."
He leaned forward on the bar in between the girls, "No chance I can interest either of you in something different? Oh, say, a Sex on the Beach? A Slippery Nipple? Sloe Comfortable Screw?"
Evie snorted a laugh, "Do you kiss your wife with that mouth?"
"I do and often! Katy's my angel."
Jenna maintained eye contact, refusing to back down from the notorious flirt. "Then be an angel yourself. A scotch on the rocks and a light beer, sir. Now shoo," she waved her hand at him, "And make it snappy! I really need that drink."
Nathan sighed and straightened. As he went off to prepare their order, he spoke over his shoulder, "One of these days, girls, I'll get you to try something new!"
Jenna leaned over the counter to fire back, "I thought bartenders were supposed to be good LISTENERS not smooth talkers. No tip for you!"
They heard him laugh from a distance and settled back down to wait for their drinks.
There was a longer silence than usual.
Evie looked at Jenna, "You're quiet."
"Just thinking about my review coming up."
"Adam was also worried about his review."
Jenna looked down and asked gently, "Can we not discuss your brother tonight. I know you worry about him, but it seems like he is all we ever talk about these days."
"What other men can we talk about, Jen? Who else is there?"
"Hmmm. Let me see. Oh, how about Stu in accounting? He likes you."
Evie shuddered, "Please don't. We're getting ready to eat. I can't un-see the crumbs that cling to his 70s style pedo mustache."
"Just imagine its cookie crumbs. Mmmm."
"All right, Jen, I'll play. How about Gary from I.T. Want a piece of that?"
"Nah. He's probably ruined for all women from Manga porn. And I know nothing about Dungeons & Dragons. My turn. What do you think about Sandwich guy?"
"Which one? Sandwich Guy with the amazing curls or Sandwich guy with the amazing butt?"
"Sandwich guy with the amazing butt."
Both ladies sighed in unison, "oh yeahhhh."
"It's a shame I don't have quarters."
"What would you need quarters for, Jenna?"
"To bounce off that amazing butt."
"I want to bite it. They look so firm I'd probably crack a tooth."
Jenna and Evelyn laughed.
"Have you noticed who else has an amazing butt, Evie?"
Evelyn's face tightened. "Yes. Yes, he does. I won't argue that." She shifted in her seat, "You should ask him out."
"I didn't bring up his butt for me you, idiot. You should ask him out. Damn, girl, put him out of his misery." Jeanna looked away and grumbled, "good thing you're pretty..."
"Pretty for an old lady you mean?"
"Stop that, Evelyn. God."
Nathan returned placing the drinks down, "Not a god. Just a mere mortal with proper libations."
He rested on one elbow and leaned in as if offering a high-level governmental intel, "If you're heading next door," his hazel eyes volleying between the two, "ask Noah about the crab-stuffed salmon special. It's amazing, but there isn't enough to add it to the menu. I only inform those worthy of the experience."
"Oooo," Jenna cooed.
Evie pouted, "I've been looking forward to gnocchi all week."
Nathan did a double take, "Nookie? I can conjure someone. I know just the man for the job."
Jenna winked in understanding, "Thanks for telling us, Nathan. It sounds wonderful."
"Enjoy your night and let Katy know if you're satisfied with the meal," Nathan shot a knowing glance at Jenna, "or the waiters."
They both grinned but Evelyn ignored them drinking her light beer straight from the bottle.
As he turned to leave, Nathan spun back, "Oh, and Evie, you may want to wish Noah a happy birthday."
"Sure. How old is he now, twenty-five. twenty-six?" Evelyn never turned her attention to them, choosing instead to distract herself by playing with her bottle.
Nathan's voice took on a stern tone, "He's 30, Evie. It's an important one so be nice to him."
"I remember that milestone birthday. It was tough," she lifted the bottle to her lips but hesitated, "Damn, that was seven years ago. He's still a baby." She took a long drink.
Jenna regarded her friend over the rim of her scotch in mild irritation.
Nathan shrugged in defeat and shook his head with disappointment, a gesture which only Jenna saw. She tapped Evelyn on the arm, "Finish that and let's go. I'm getting hungry."
The girls dropped cash on the counter and headed next door, not bothering to put on their coats despite the frigid air. The moment they entered the restaurant, a honey colored, curly haired gentleman in the tux at the maître d' stand greeted them by name. "Good evening, Jenna. Evelyn so good to see you. Table for two or are you expecting other guests?"
"It's only us, Rue. Who else would it be?" Evelyn answered with eyes staring at the floor.
"This way, please." He motioned for them to move ahead.
Evelyn took the lead, but Jenna grabbed Rue's arm and pulled him down to whisper in his ear, "is Noah working tonight?"
Rue grinned, "I put you in his section. He'd never forgive me if I didn't."
Jenna gave a pleased nod and moved forward to catch up with Evelyn. If there was ever a good time to get Noah and Evie together, tonight would be the night. Provided they were successful at pulling Evelyn's head out of her ass long enough to give him a chance. As if on cue, Noah came out of nowhere.
"Good evening Evelyn. and Jenna," he added on a second thought, "can I get you a light beer and a scotch on the rocks?"
"Hello Noah. Evie, look. It's Noah." she held her eyes on Evelyn hoping she would pick up on it.
"Oh yeah. Hey Noah." She turned her attention to the handsome tall waiter, "Happy birthday by the way."
Noah's eyebrows shot up and grinned ear to ear, "You know about that?"
"Yeah. Nathan told us today is your 30th birthday. Don't worry though - thirty isn't that bad. You won't feel really old until you get past thirty-five."
"Thirty-five isn't old. Neither is forty... or fifty anymore."
"Yeah, well," she grabbed her napkin off the table and shook it open to place it in her lap, "I'll let you know when I get there in a few years."
Noah looked to Jenna for guidance, but she was giving him a sympathetic grin. "Yes, Noah. Those drinks would be lovely."
Noah nodded and walked away.
Jenna leaned in, "What the hell are you doing?"
"What do you mean?"
Jenna whispered so hard the veins on the side of her neck were bulging. "Stop acting like you're the fucking crypt keeper! This was the perfect time to get back in the game! Didn't you hear him? He doesn't care how old you are!"
Evelyn rolled her eyes, turning away as...