"Damn it, Julie, I said not now! I'm working, which is also what you’re supposed to be doing," Chris snapped. He grimaced as he looked over at her. Could her skirt be any shorter? Her white shirt any tighter or a shade more see-through? Her red lips worked a bit as she ground her teeth. They were in the middle of a busy kitchen, though most of the other chefs were working on the other side of the kitchen and pretending they couldn't hear anything.
Chris knew every one of them was listening to Julie yell at him. Their relationship had gotten so bad that she didn’t even hesitate to harass him in the middle of the kitchen, where they both worked! What had he been thinking?
"It's my sister's wedding. I need a date; we've been seeing each other for a few months now. I'm not dating anyone else. What I am supposed to do? Just take some random guy off the street? You're my boyfriend!" She stabbed one manicured finger in the air at him.
"I'm not going away for the weekend with you to some supposedly romantic B&B for your sister's wedding. I can't. I have to work," he said stubbornly. “And I never said I was your boyfriend.” He was busy stirring a pot on the stove so he couldn’t move away from her, as much as he wished to just get away from this conversation. He’d known it was coming and had been avoiding her.
"You’re the son of the owner, you can take time off." Both of Julie's hands had landed back on her hips and she was giving him a stare that clearly said either give in or be prepared to pay the consequences.
"It's not like that, Julie, and you know it. My working here isn't just helping out my dad. It's an internship and it counts as credit for school. I won't mess that up, especially not for the wedding of someone I don't really like anyway." Chris kept stirring the pot, checking the thermometer on the side. He saw the way Julie's mouth dropped open in shock from the corner of his eye. It took her a moment before she could speak.
"That's a shitty thing to say!" she snapped. "My sister is always nice to you."
"She’s only nice if you count looking down her nose at me and being a snobby bitch ever since she came sweeping back into town with her well-off prig of a fiancée as being nice. I don’t. I'm not going Julie; take one of your girlfriends or something. I'm too busy."
Julie's body was stiff and her entire face was red. "You asshole!" she hissed. "You're going to have more free time now because we’re through! God, I don't know what I ever saw in you!"
"You saw your chance to get out of this place and decided to use me to do it," Chris shot back. "I've known since we were in high school that you only wanted me because you thought I was leaving to go to State on a soccer scholarship. You heard about that job offer in New York, didn’t you? That’s why you’re always trying to get me to go away on weekends, I bet!”
Chris shook his head. “Well I like it here; I'm going to finish my cooking school degree and then work with my dad, maybe run the restaurant for him one day. I'm not going anywhere and we both know that neither were we. You won't be happy here, raising a family with me, and knowing my fucked up luck you’d get pregnant. You'd turn into a massive bitch and make my life a living hell. No thank you!"
"You have to actually have sex to get pregnant. And that sure as hell wasn't happening," Julie swore. "No matter what I did you never took the shot, never went all the way. We could have a whole weekend away together and you tell me no? You're a bastard and I've wasted enough time on your useless dick. I'm done." She started to storm off but stopped when Chris snapped at her.
"Maybe we never had sex because my dick would freeze and fall off if I stuck it in a frigid bitch like you!" He glared at her, wishing he’d done the smart fucking thing and stayed the hell away from Julie Amery.
Julie gasped and whirled on him. She grabbed the nearest object, a thick dinner plate, and flung it at his head. When Chris dodged the plate he jerked the pot of sugar he was still stirring sideways and the thick liquid in it flew out in a wide arc. It landed on a busboy walking down the aisle toward the dishwashers. His scream and the crashing noise as he dropped his bin full of dishes were so loud everyone in the kitchen stopped working and stared.
"Shit!" Chris froze for a second as the younger man danced in pain.
Previously published:Heated Blood