300 Flowers
Chapter 20

Copyright© 2016 by Allan Kindred

The hour of seven is upon them and a rare moment indeed is about to get underway. First thing first, Derek must get Anna some more flowers. Beauty deserves beauty.

Derek looks up and down the street, but does not see one of those street flower venders. He knows of a flower shop nearby, but it has since closed for the evening.

“Damn!”

“What?

“Oh, nothing.”

“You were looking for some flowers, weren’t you?”

Derek smiles sheepishly. He can already tell there are going to be no secrets between them. “Maybe.”

Derek holds the door open for Anna, as they go into the restaurant. As soon as he looks over at the desk he sees an assortment of decoration flowers. While looking directly at the woman he smiles disarmingly and walks up and pulls a single red rose out of one of the decoration vases.

He turns to Anna with intent and joy and bows slightly as he hands her the single red rose. “For you, milady.”

“Thank you,” Anna says, while smiling and taking a big whiff of the flower gift.

“Jennings, party of six.”

“Of course, sir, right this way. The other members of your party are already here and waiting for you.”

“Thank you.” Derek puts his hand on the small of Anna’s back as they follow the concierge.

Derek smiles when he sees all four of his friends rise at the exact same time to greet them. A drill sergeant would be proud. Before any words are spoken Brandi, Eric, David and Lisa admire how pretty Anna is looking tonight.

Derek and Anna both were overjoyed to find a deep red silk dress with ruffled pull down shoulders that flawlessly falls to just below the knees. Her shoes and purse match, as does the single red rose she is lovingly and nervously clutching in her hands.

“Anna, this is Brandi. Brandi, this is Anna.” Derek introduces them first for two reasons. One, they had already talked earlier, and two, Brandi is the closest.

“Hi, Anna, it is wonderful to finally meet you in person.”

“Yes, thank you.”

Then he goes around the table. “Anna, this is Eric, this is David, and last but not least this is Lisa.”

“Hi, everybody, it is so good to meet you. I’ve heard a little about each of you from Derek, but I look forward to getting to know each of you in person.” Always wise.

“Wow, elegant, beautiful and smart. Derek, where have you been hiding this girl?” Eric, always the charmer walks up to her as he is saying that, and then he bows and kisses her hand.

“Alright, alright, smoothie, down boy!” They all laugh and smile. “Actually I only met her yesterday. Well, the other day. Well, we’ll get to that in a moment.”

When Derek said they had met only yesterday Lisa and Brandi shared a sweet surprised smile. “Hi, Anna, I’m Lisa and it is a true pleasure to meet you.” Lisa comes over and hugs her.

“Please, everybody, sit.” Derek holds out the chair for Anna.

After they sit, David says, “Hi, Anna, I’m David again.”

“David and Lisa are married and expecting their first child, if I haven’t already mentioned that.”

“Congratulations!”

“Thank you.”

Before Lisa can reply Anna asks, “Are you excited about being a mommy?”

“I am, thank you. That is so sweet of you to ask.”

Everybody is smiling when the waitress walks over. A moment later the owner walks over to them. “Derek, good to see you.”

Derek rises to give her a hug. “Thank you, Erin. You of course know the crew, but this is Anna.”

“We’ll hello, Anna, and welcome to Primo Zamora. Your every wish will go fulfilled tonight.”

Anna smiles adoringly as she says sweetly, “Thank you, but I already got my wish.”

Derek looks to her real fast and smiles like a teenager being ran over by his or her own emotions. While Anna and Derek are gazing at each other, Brandi, Eric, David and Lisa begin to understand that something real and substantial is happening between them. They couldn’t be happier for their friend.

“You remember the club Hunter’s Moon we went to?”

“Uh huh.”

“Well, Brandi and Lisa decorated it.”

“Oh, wow, I love that place! Great job.”

“Thanks.”

“Thanks. So, Anna, what do you do?” From anyone one else it could seem like prying, but coming from Lisa it is only sweet interest.

“I’m a waitress at a little diner uptown.”

“What’s it called?” asks David.

“Marie’s”

“I don’t think I’ve been there.”

“It’s just a little place. We have good pie, though.”

Eric chimes in, “Well, then we’re going to all have to come up there and try some pie. I love pie.”

“Me, too!” adds Derek. Everybody agrees.

“It’s not far from my work. In fact, I was getting some air from having to have my boss’s son arrested when she came up to me. Do you remember I told all of you that on my last date I went to give my date a flower, but she said she was allergic to them?”

They all say, “Uh huh.” and “Of course!”

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