Wendy’s relationships with both Mike and Elliott continued to thrive. She enjoyed their differences. Mike, the laid back and casual one who seemed to live in the moment. He never discussed his wife, or their separation, and Wendy never asked. She just enjoyed the time they spent together.
Wendy smiled thinking about Elliott and his more sophisticated look than Mike. Elliott always dressed impeccably, whether dressy or casual. Wendy liked the times they went somewhere special, and she could dress up. The conversations with Elliott were more philosophical than hers with Mike. How lucky to have two men she liked and who desired her. Both of her businesses prospered, and she occasionally did work with Claudia. There were challenges with a lot of hard work, but they satisfied her desire to continue to be creative. She savored everything in her life. Of course, her biggest desire was not yet met…Brad. His looks, so enticing, and his fun personality and talent continued to entrance her. She also admired how kind he was whenever he interacted with people. Wendy just knew he would be a caring partner if they ever got together.
Cindy and Wendy approached the outside of Pirate’s Cove where a billboard stood and a picture of Brad as he sat with his guitar, and his name in big print: Coming Attraction, Brad Hanson. They both stared at it and grinned. The open door in the center of the restaurant welcomed them. As they walked in Wendy noticed more detail this time and remembered its immediate appeal with rattan and bamboo walls behind the piano bar. She remembered the big picture behind the piano bar of a pirate holding a flag with pirates on it. The bar was straight ahead when she came in, and the kitchen off to the left of the bar. To the right of the entrance were those tables and chairs with the two steps up and the railing all around the edge…the dance floor nearby.
“What do you think?” Cindy boomed over the noise of the workers. Wendy yelled back, “Really awesome. It’s so very different. I never noticed most of this when I was here before.”
A man came toward them as they moved further into the room.
“Hi ladies, may I help you?”
“Hi. I’m Cindy and this is Wendy, we’re here to help out.”
“Oh, yeah, Brad mentioned you’d be by. I’m Rusty, Brad’s buddy and the other owner.”
“This place is groovy,” Cindy shouted over the continuing noise.
Rusty yelled back, “It will be when we’re finished. Thanks for the offer to help out.”
The noise ended.
“We’re glad to,” Wendy interjected before Cindy could say anything.
“First, would you two mind helping to get the kitchen organized?”
“Sure, no problem. Okay Wendy?”
“Lead the way.”
They followed Rusty into the kitchen.
The kitchen wasn’t unpleasant, but Cindy and Wendy recognized the need for some elbow grease and the pots needed to be rearranged. The utensils hung down onto hooks over the two stoves. They were in disarray. A stench of some sort existed. They needed to find it and extricate it.
Through a door next to the kitchen, they heard Brad’s voice. He and another man came out.
“Hi Cindy, Wendy. This is my friend, John. He’s an assistant here. I see you met Rusty.” “Yes, nice to meet you, John,” Cindy said, and Wendy shook his hand.
“Sorry guys, but I need to grab some food before my four o’clock gig.” Brad left.
As Wendy watched him leave, she admired his body in the tight denims and the satin shirt with the brown fringed vest.
Rusty went into the bar and Cindy and Wendy worked on the kitchen. They spent two hours there. Thoroughly exhausted Wendy left a few minutes later, but Cindy stayed behind to do more work.
Other times Wendy stopped to help out. Once she helped with the tables on the landing, above the rail. They needed to be re-arranged and new tablecloths needed to be picked out. There were lots of decisions to make. Brad let Rusty and John make most of them. When Wendy or Cindy made suggestions, the men accepted some of their ideas. They started to feel like they were part of the Cove. Although busy with different activities Wendy knew her relationship with Elliott was steadfast. Their lives together were exactly what she looked for in a relationship. They continued to go to movies, for drives, to eat out, fun activities. Many holidays also brought more fun opportunities, like a party a friend of Elliot’s gave.
As soon as they arrived Elliott introduced Wendy to his close friend, Will.
“So glad Elliott brought you. I’ve been wanting to meet you since you two got together.”
“Thank you, very nice of you to say.”
“Elliott, has been a trouper, helping me out with work issues.”
“Hey Will, you know I’m right here, right?”
“Yeah, sorry, just wanted to brag about your kindness.”
“I know his kindness too,” Wendy interjected, and Elliott glared at her. “Elliott, you don’t have to feel funny. We’re just two people who feel the same way about you.” She grabbed hold of his upper arm and squeezed it to her. He patted her hand.
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