It was a typical end to a long, busy night. The employees were hanging around, having cocktails and waiting for their well-earned tip outs. The Television that hung in the corner was showing the Braves game. A few of the guys had placed bets between themselves on the game and were anxious to see if they were going to have some extra money in their pockets.
Brock was sitting at the end of the bar relaxing with a Captain Morgan and Coke. Nick was keeping him company. "So, How'd your first day go?"
Brock seemed very pleased with himself, "Piece of cake. This place isn't in as bad of shape as they think. Even through the standards around here are very high. I'm still sure I can get it organized in no time."
"That's good to hear."
Jolie stopped at the bar and put her belongings on a bar stool. As she was pouring herself a cold glass of water, she looked at Nick and Brock and skeptically wondered what was going to be organized.
Brock turned to her. "Hi, I'm Brock Anderson." He put out his hand.
She paused, looked at his hand, and then shook it. "Jolie Sanbell. Nice to meet you." She was hoping this was going to be brief. She was not in the mood for small talk. All she wanted to do was get a breath of fresh air as soon as possible.
"So, I hear that you have been more or less running things around here."
She did not answer him. Was he trying to be snide? That comment could have been taken in a couple of different ways. It had been a little over four months that Jolie was running both "Fred's" the martini bar, and "Max's" the upscale restaurant, since Fred's manager moved out of state. She knew the load of running both places could be overwhelming, but she felt she could handle it and she did. It was from years of taking on too much responsibility. The company, as much as they would have liked to keep a manager's salary in their pockets and not hire help, they knew the work would burn out a person and business would decline, so they found someone just as capable as Jolie to help run the bar. Of course she kind of felt she was not doing a good enough job if she needed help. Inside she knew it was not true.
"Are you taking off for the night?" Brock asked
"Yes, finally." She sighed and thought to herself, ‘How can he not tell I don't want to talk to him?'
"Everyone's going for a drink. Are you going?"
Turning from him, "I hadn't planned on it."
"I want to go, but my car is in the shop. " Jolie gave him a sideways glance. ‘Why is he telling me this?'
"Well, I am sure any of these guys can give you a ride."
"They can't, they're about to leave and I am suppose to see Mr. James before I leave."
She thought this guy is too much. "I know the taxis are a little expensive around here, but I'm sure you could afford it.
He held his hand up. "God woman, you just won't bite, will you? I want you to give me a ride, so we can talk a little. I know you're the backbone to this place and I could use your advice."
"Oh, " Trying to figure him out, "I will give you a ride, but that's it."
"Are you sure? I don't want to put you out." He had a gorgeous smile. And he shined it like he won something.
"No." She hesitated. There was someone she did not want to see anymore, that would be there at the usual after work watering hole.
"No, you don't want to go." He looked sad.
"Oh, no, no I meant no, I am sure. It's fine; I'll give you a ride. That's it." She managed a smile.