Delicious(Buchanans, Book 1)(44) by Susan Mallery
She walked through the quiet kitchen and felt at one with the world. It was as if every cell in her body had just taken a big breath and relaxed. Sex was a very fine thing and something she should do more of. Especially if it could be as good as it had been last night.
She supposed that made Cal the perfect lover. Not only did he know what pleased her, he knew without being told. They’d already worked out the kinks in their physical relationship and they didn’t have an emotional one.
Oh, sure, she liked him. He was a decent guy. But not for her. They’d already tried that once. Him not wanting kids was too big a hurdle to overcome.
But he sure could make her toes curl.
She went to work on her menu for specials that evening. Sometime around eight-thirty, Edouard showed up. The unnamed cat appeared shortly after, looking fat and sleek and wanting plenty of scratches and petting.
“I don’t want to know what you’ve been doing,” Penny told him. “But I haven’t seen a single rodent since your arrival.”
The cat purred louder.
Naomi strolled in around ten. “Morning all,” she said. “How is everyone do—” She stared at Penny. “Oh. My. God.”
Penny half turned in her seat at the counter, fully expecting to see a large alien hovering behind her.
“What?” Penny asked.
“What happened?” Naomi demanded as she walked toward her. “There’s something. I can tell.” Her friend started to laugh. “You did it. You had sex!”
Penny glanced around and was grateful when she didn’t see Edouard. None of their cooks were due in until later, which meant there was time to do damage control.
“I have no idea what you’re talking about,” Penny told her, not sure it worked, what with her inability to stop smiling.
“Oh, please. You’re glowing, and not in a pregnant way. This is far more earthy. I can’t believe it. And after all this time. But who? You—”
Naomi froze. Her eyes widened, her mouth dropped open. “Holy shit. You had sex with Cal.”
“Because I needed to know that?” Reid asked as he stepped into the kitchen. He walked over and leaned against the counter. “Say it isn’t so.”
Penny returned her attention to her menu. “I have no idea what either of you are talking about but if you’re not going to do work, then get out of my way because I’m busy.”
“It’s true,” Naomi said. “Look at her. The half smile. The fact that she hasn’t showered.”
Reid leaned on the counter next to his former lover. “What do you bet Cal spent the night at her house?”
“You think they did it there? They could have done it at his house.”
“I don’t know if Penny could. You haven’t seen his kitchen, but it’s bright red and she’d really hate that.”
Penny slammed down her pen. “Would you two please stop it? I’m right here.”
“We know that,” Naomi said. “Having this conversation when you weren’t here wouldn’t be nearly as much fun.”
Penny stood. “My private life is just that. Private. So I’m not going to talk about it.”
Naomi raised her eyebrows. “Did you see that? She’s not denying the sex thing.”
“I know. You think they’re getting back together?” Reid asked.
Penny groaned. “Fine. Talk about me. I’m going to my office where I will—”
She froze, barely daring to breathe. Naomi was at her side in a heartbeat.
“What happened? Are you okay?”
Penny waved her hands and waited. Seconds later, she felt it again. A fluttering on the inside of her stomach, followed by a definite jab.
The menu and pen fell from her fingers. She grabbed Naomi’s arms. “I felt the baby!” she cried. “I felt the baby move.”
The two women jumped around together. Reid got pulled into the group hug. Penny pressed both hands against her stomach.
“Do it again,” she said. “I want to feel it again.”
The baby obliged with a slight stirring.
“Good job,” Reid said with a grin.
“Thanks. I’m excited. Wow. Movement. I’ll have to get out my baby book, but I think I’m right on schedule.” Penny laughed. “It’s really a baby.”
“Did you think it was gas?” Naomi asked.
Penny grinned. “No.” She bent down and picked up her paper and pen. “Okay. Now I have to do the menu.” Even though she wasn’t in the mood. “Maybe I’ll call my mom first,” she said. “She’ll want to hear.”
Penny walked into her office and reached for the phone. Oddly enough, the person who came to mind wasn’t her mother. Instead she found herself wanting to call Cal and tell him the good news.
“Bad idea,” she told herself. Cal didn’t want children and three years ago, he’d made it clear he didn’t want her. So expecting him to share in this was foolish.
So why was that the first place her mind went?
PENNY CHECKED the bandage on her hand. The bleeding had stopped, proving her theory that she didn’t need stitches. It was Friday night and the kitchen was moving at top speed. Nothing less than a severed limb was going to get her out of the restaurant until the orders were through.
“The table for eight has been seated,” she yelled. “You know they’re going to want the special so brace yourself.”
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