CHAPTER TWO

Roxie

I sighed as I walked into Harper’s house through the servant's entrance. I greeted Kate, the cook, and took the servant stairs up to the third floor. I knocked on the door for Harper’s bedroom and walked in when she called for me to come in. She was in bed since the doctor put her on bed rest. She’s due any day now and we were all happy about that.

“Hey, Sissy. How are you feeling today?”
“Miserable. Can you take the baby out of me?”
“Well,” I said, sitting in the chair beside her bed. “No.”

She sighed and shook her head. “I just don’t get why this baby won’t just come, Rox. I hurt all over. And I cannot get comfortable to sleep more than an hour at a time.”
“I’m sorry, Sissy. Any day now you’ll have your bundle of joy.”
“Talk to me so I’m not thinking about myself.”
“Well, I was fired,” I said.

“What? Why? You’ve only been on that job for a month, Rox.”

“The lady of the house did not want me there because I’m too pretty. Her husband came home last week and I guess she’s seen him looking at me and she fired me.”
“Like you’d sleep with the man of the house. Especially a married man.”
“Exactly.”
“Was he even good-looking?”
“Very much so. They are a young couple and they only had one precious son. It was perfect.”

“I’m sorry, Rox. I’m sure you’ll be able to find something else soon.”

I wasn’t so sure. In the two months since she moved back in with her fiancé, Damon, I’ve lost two jobs working as a nanny. I found one right after she fired me. There was no way I was going to be able to work for my younger sister so it was fine. I was working for a couple in their early to mid-thirties. They had three children, two girls, and a boy. All between the ages of six and twelve. They decided to move back to Chiseldale and offered for me to go with them but I couldn’t. It was too far from Dubbury and I’d come here to be closer to Harper and my other sisters, Natalie and Chelsea, and my brother, Collin. My older brother, Bailey, moved here a few months ago. I didn’t want to leave them.

I’d found a job just a week after leaving them and worked with the little boy. He was a joy. His mother was a pill but I liked the job. It all went to hell when her husband came home. I sighed.

“It’ll work out, Roxie.”

The door to the bedroom opened and Harper’s gorgeous fiancé walked in. He smiled at the two of us. I could not get over those deep, dark blue eyes of his.

“I hope the baby gets Dame’s eyes,” I said.

“Why, Rox?” he asked as he walked into the closet.
“Because I like your eyes. They are unique so if my niece or nephew gets them, he or she will be unique.”

He sighed from inside of the closet.

“I think he sometimes wishes I was an only child,” Harper said.

“I can take a hint,” I said, standing. “You will send a message as soon as you go into labor, won’t you?”
“Of course. I’ve already instructed Lenora to run straight to your house when I go into labor. No matter the time,” she said.

Damon came out of the closet wearing a crisp white shirt and black slacks.

“Bye, Sissy,” I said, kissing her on the forehead.

I said bye to Damon and left their bedroom. I took the main stairs down and ran into Cooper Barrington, Damon’s good friend, and business partner, on the second floor. He smiled that lazy smile that always made my stomach dip.

“Ms. Dering,” he said in a smooth, elegant voice.

I rolled my eyes and crossed my arms over my chest. “Mr. Barrington.”

“What are you doing here?”
“Talking to my sister.”
“I guess I thought you worked.”

“I am between jobs right now.”
“I’m sorry,” he said sincerely and it caused me to smile. “Maybe we can get together some time and talk about it.”
“No.”

“Roxie, why do you hate me so much?”
“I don’t hate you. I just don’t trust you. I have brothers, remember? And they spend time with you.”
“They’ve told you things about me?”

That infuriating cocky smile was on his face. I sighed.

“Baz is my older brother and doesn’t want to see me get hurt so yes he’s told me things about you.”

“Well,” he said. “I can understand that. I have an older sister and I’d warn her away from a man like me.”

“I need to go.”
“I may have a job opportunity for you,” he said.

“Really?”
“Yes. Can we meet for dinner and talk about it?”
“Where?”
“The club. Tonight if you’re free.”

“What time?”

“Eight.”
“Okay,” I said. “I’ll see you at eight.”