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from Return to Sandy Shores by Shirley Holder Platt

Copyright © 2019–2021 Shirley Holder Platt

Chapter 23 - Sam

My day got worse. I had an email awaiting me when I came back, dripping puddles, into the office and plopped down into my chair. It was time to do payroll. I’d been dreading this day; afraid I’d find out that my paycheck wouldn’t cover my rent. Unfortunately, I was smart to be afraid. Cat was paying me more than minimum wage, but barely. I printed checks for me, Brad, and Trisha. It irked me that Trisha’s check was for more than mine. Never mind the fact that she’d worked more hours, it still burned by buns. My hair was a frizzy, damp mop. My slacks were soaked up to my knees. My shoes squished any time I took a step. And my dreamboat date stood me up. Yeah. My day was crap.

I heard a new customer talking with Brad, so I peeked out into the shop. It was the postman. He was young, fit, and had blond, surfer dude semi-dreads. He wore the postal uniform with shorts, and he had defined calf muscles like a runner. If I hadn’t looked like something the cat dragged in, I would’ve gone out to flirt. Maybe I’d have more opportunities to find someone to date than I’d imagined. The hottie left the shop, and Brad brought the mail to me.

“Who was that?” I asked in the most innocent voice I could muster.

“Postman. Here you go.” He dropped the envelopes into my in box.

“Yeah, but what’s his name?” I picked up the mail and sorted through.

“Joel. He’s a righteous dude. Used to travel all over the world, surfing in contests. Never won the big prizes, so he finally gave up. Now he’s living here and delivering mail.” Brad shook his head in sadness for his hero. I planned to be out front tomorrow when the guy showed up.

I started humming. I was determined to be upbeat. No more time lost on guys that didn’t come through for me. There were other fish in the sea. My day was looking up. I texted Vee to tell her about the new prospect. She must have been busy, because all she sent back was a thumbs up emoji. I was sure I’d hear back from her that evening. She always wanted the juicy details. I didn’t tell her I’d been stood up. I wasn’t ready to deal with her anger and my disappointment at the same time.

Cat came in to close up again. I had the routine down, but if being there made her feel more secure, I was down with that. She wore ripped and faded jeans like a supermodel. I tried not to feel jealous. She pushed her hair behind an ear. Dangling dolphin earrings fell almost to her shoulders.

“Nice earrings,” I said.

 “Thanks. I made this design a couple of years ago. It’s one of my favorites.”

“Well, they look great.”

“Tomorrow, I’m making a trip to our wholesaler. I’d like you to come along.” So much for my being in the shop when the hot mailman came by.

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