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Driving Her Crazy(7)

By:Kira Archer

“It should be a little easier to manage this way.”

“Oh, thank you, dear!” The woman patted her cheek. “I better go find my gate.”

“Oh crap,” Cherice muttered. “I’ve got to run. It was nice to meet you!” she called over her shoulder.

She didn’t dare look at her watch. She just ran for her gate like the walking dead were snapping at her heels.

Chapter Three

Oz had turned when he’d heard the old woman exclaim over her spilled luggage, but before he could go back to help, the attractive woman from the metal detector was already stooping to gather up the grandma’s belongings. He didn’t know why that surprised him so much. He didn’t even know the woman. She could be Mother Theresa for all he knew. But she certainly didn’t come across that way. Yet there she was, helping a little old lady and having a grand time chatting while she was doing it from all appearances, despite being late for her plane.

Shit! The plane. Assured that no one needed his help, he jogged to the gate, but shouldn’t have bothered. By the time he got to the gate, it was nearly deserted. The plane still sat there, but the doors were closed.

There had to be a way onto that plane. He sauntered over to the check-in podium and plastered on his most charming smile. He glanced at the attendant’s name tag.

“Becky? That’s a great name. My favorite aunt is named Becky.”

Becky’s cheeks flushed and she smiled shyly, not quite meeting his gaze.

“Can I help you, sir?”

“I sure hope so. I’m supposed to be on that plane right there,” he said, gesturing to where it still sat at the gate. “I know I’m a few seconds late, but the lines were killer. Is there any way I can go ahead and board? I’ve got my boarding pass and everything all ready.”

Becky’s smile faded around the edges. “I’m sorry, sir. But once the doors have closed we can’t allow any more passengers on board.”

Oz’s shoulders slumped but he wasn’t done trying yet. “Is it possible to make an exception just this once? I really have to get to New York. I can’t miss this flight.”

“I’m really sorry, sir, but as I just said, once the doors are closed, they can’t be opened again. Security rules.”

“Ah, I don’t look like a threat to national security, do I?” he asked, flirting so hard he was nearly batting his damn eyelashes. “I really need to make this flight. Isn’t there something you can do? I mean, the plane is still just sitting there…surely someone as sweet as you could…”

“Excuse me, I’m sorry.” The woman who’d been helping the little old lady elbowed her way around him. “I’m sorry,” she said again to him. “Do you mind if I butt in real quick?”

Oz opened his mouth but she didn’t wait for his response. “Hi, Becky?” She gave Becky a sugary sweet smile that didn’t quite reach all the way to her eyes. “Look, I absolutely cannot miss this flight. My sister is getting married tomorrow. The rehearsal dinner is tonight. My mother has invited half the city. If I’m not there she will, very literally, kill me. Are you sure there’s nothing you can do? Maybe there is a supervisor or someone who can help work this out…”

Becky shook her head. “My supervisor won’t be able to tell you anything different, ma’am. Once the gates are closed they do not open again. For anyone.”

The radio buzzed and Becky held up a finger like she was putting the other woman on mute and answered it.

His mystery woman’s jaw dropped at the rude dismissal and she sucked in some deep breaths, probably against the urge to scream if the look on her face was any indication. But the movement also forced a pair of very nicely rounded breasts against the thin silk of her blouse. They drew Oz’s gaze like an open can of soda drew bees. In fact, everything about her was very nicely rounded. Her well-tailored slacks revealed gently curving hips and a backside that just begged for attention.

Good God, he needed a date. Come to think of it…how long had it been? He couldn’t even remember, which meant it had been far too long. No wonder he was drooling over some strange woman when he should be stressing over his flight. Of course, fixing his attention on her was far more pleasant than thinking about what would happen if he didn’t make his interview. So fix it he would. No matter how stuck up she might be, and her rescue of the little old lady a few minutes before seemed to throw a small wrench in that assumption, she was certainly fine to look at.

Of course, she chose that moment to glance over at him and he turned his head so she wouldn’t catch him smiling. The quick narrowing of her eyes, however, told him he hadn’t been quick enough.