Eric Rhodes is actually late for a Charity Gala thrown by the Mayor? It’s unheard of!
That was the headline that Eric expected to see in the society pages tomorrow. He tried his best to walk quickly past the press as they snapped the incriminating photos of his tardiness. His father would definitely give him grief for showing up late, but it wasn’t his fault. He’d been juggling three cases at once and finding time to attend a Gala was a very difficult task for him right now.
Of course he knew his father wouldn’t take that as an excuse since two of his cases were pro bono— which his father didn’t approve of since he had already reached his pro bono quota for the year— but Eric didn’t care. He’d rather give his time and assistance to people that needed him, than the elitist assholes that threw the most money at his father’s firm. Right now he was representing a woman that was going up against the shark lawyers of the company in which she was employed, alone, in a sexual harassment lawsuit. The woman hadn’t been able to afford lawyers brave enough to go against those representing the company she was suing, and when she had come to Swanson Rhodes asking about their pro bono program, Eric had just been passing by, and it thoroughly sparked his interest. Actually, it had been his preparation for that exact trial—which was set for a couple days from now— that had made him late tonight, but knowing his parents would hear none of it if he tried to explain, Eric happily resigned to not explaining his tardiness at all.
He walked into the lobby of the Grand Luxury Hotel, seeing some of the attendants at the gala chatting in the lobby. All were dressed in their formalwear looking ready to shell out hundreds of thousands of dollars to the Mayors latest charity, which happened to be one Eric was quite interested in.
The charity was to help rebuild the homeless shelters of Boston. Not only the rooms in which they slept, but the places they ate, job placement programs, etcetera. Eric was actually looking forward to attending this fundraiser, finding it a much better cause then the idiotic bullshit charity events his mother usually drug him too, the last being the ‘Save the spotted Whales’ ball last weekend. She had cried until he’d agreed to escort her, and had actually donated $10,000 to the pointless charity. Eric was confused the entire time they were there. He hadn’t even known spotted whales existed.
Rolling his eyes at the memory, he straighten his suit. Yes, it was definitely going to be refreshing giving money to a charity he actually gave a shit about.
Eric looked up when the deep male voice called out his name. A smile spread across his face. “Well I’ll be. Reese Boyd, how the hell did you escape that damn Hospital tonight?” Eric joked.
Dressed in a black tux with a billion dollar smile on his face, Reese was out and about and Eric could hardly believe it. The days of the young doctor were forever spent within the walls of the hospital, but it looked like Reese had finally found a way to escape.
Reese grinned, his dark brown eyes brightening as he strolled over to Eric. Once he made it to him he slapped his hand and brought him into a frat boy hug … At least that was what they called them. Reese and Eric’s friendship began the first day of high school and had remained unbreakable every day since. They’d been tight through everything from detention, senior pranks, and hell week; to long nights of studying for entrance exams to Harvard, and even longer nights studying for the bar, and Reese, starting his residency.
“I’m still on call, but the wife called me while I was sleeping telling me to get my ass out of bed and put on a tux so… here I am.” He wore the smile that he always had when he spoke of his gorgeous, funny, demanding wife Shay Boyd, who happened to be another one of Eric’s best friends from Harvard. Eric had actually been the one that introduced the two. He knew that ‘pretty boy Reese’ would be able to use his famous good looks to charm the tenacious woman, and he was right. Reese had married her after one year of dating. Shay claimed she’d only married him because he looked like Charles Michael Davis with his, in her words, ‘creamy chocolatey skin’– and because he spoiled her rotten— but Eric and Reese knew that she’d married him because she had fallen madly in love with him.
“Well, we all know what Shay says, goes,” Eric said through a chuckle.
“Isn’t that the truth …” Reese straightening the tie on his tux as he stood back, eyeing Eric in surprised amusement. “Look at you.”
Eric’s brows furrowed. “What?”
Reese laughed, “What do you mean ‘what’? When has golden boy ever been late for an event like this? Mommy is definitely not going to be happy about your lack of punctuality.” Reese joked, wagging his finger at Eric.
Eric slipped his hands into his pockets, laughing softly. “Well Mommy’s just going to have to get over it this time. Golden boy is a twenty-eight year old, grown ass man with other priorities.”
Reese chuckled, slapping Eric on his back. “Mmmhmm, we’ll see. Let’s get in there. I don’t know about you but I’m ready to spend some trust fund money.”
“You and me both brother,” Eric laughed as he and Reese made their way to the ball room.
“Maybe you can help me find my dates. Hell, maybe you can take one of them off my hands. The one that isn’t my wife that is” Reese said casually, as they continued to walk to the ballroom.
Eric frowned in confusion. “Dates?” As in two women?
Reese looked over to him with a wicked grin. “Yes sir. I am escorting two beautiful women tonight.”
Eric stopped Reese from walking by grabbing his shoulder. “She did not…”
“Yep she’s here, smile and all. And I’m not even going to describe the dress she’s sporting.” He smirked. “I’ma let that be a surprise … you’re welcome buddy.”
“But Shay said she’s still—”
“Yep, I know man. Everybody knows, but you know Kyla.”
Hell yea he knew Kyla, he was in love with the woman. Her perfect little ass should have been home taking care of herself after what happened to her last week. The last place Eric wanted the newly single love of his life in was a ball room full of grubby little empire heirs and potential sugar daddies! He had planned on going to her apartment tomorrow after court, both to comfort her and get the address to where her ex-asswipe fiancé was staying so he could beat his ass.
At the thought of the skinny prick, Eric’s jaw tightened in anger. “Man I wanna—”
“Kick Terrance’s ass” Reese interjected, nodding his head in agreement. “Yea man, me too. Shay said she was still pretty torn up earlier today. I don’t like seeing Kyla Anne like that. After all she’s been through, she didn’t deserve to be hurt.”
Eric agreed. Kyla deserved whatever she desired and more. After surviving a rough childhood, and achieving all she had thus far, Eric believed she deserved the world. “God, I just wish she’d—”
“Take some time for herself” Reese interjected once again. “Yea me too, but you know, she’s too stubborn to do that.”
Eric wanted to laugh at how well Reese could finish his sentences, but he didn’t have time for that. He’d missed Kyla all week. He needed to see with his own eyes that she was doing well.
Reese laughed. “You’re about to go find her aren’t you – whoa!” Reese exclaimed through uproarious laughter, when Eric darted past him, and into the ball room.
(c) 2015 Michelle Hardin…
Loving Kyla, coming soon to ebook and paperback May 16th 2015!