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Purple Orchids (The Mitchell Sisters #1)
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A PIECE OF PAPER DESTROYED ME.
It was one day … one moment … one letter.
Now he’s back.
Someone is lying.
And it’s not me.
We need to learn to trust again.
Sometimes, however, I think trust should be considered a four-letter word.
Note to reader: This book is a standalone novel. It is the first in a series that follows three sisters.
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“Here’s to another successful acquisition,” Scott says as he clinks his shot glass, full of one of the world’s finest tequilas, to Angie’s and mine.
“At a hundred bucks a shot, you’d better hope we sealed the deal today,” Angie adds. Scott and I vehemently nod our heads in agreement before we down the expensive liquor and savor the burn.
“Gavin, you were on fire,” Scott says. “I thought we might lose the screenplay altogether until you pulled out the big guns.”
“It never hurts to drop a name or two just to get these young screenwriters seeing stars and dollar signs,” I say. I turn to Angie and tell her, “Don’t forget to put that meeting with his lawyer on our schedule next week. I’d hate to lose it on a damn technicality.”
“I’m on it boss,” Angie assures me, already typing away into the calendar on her phone.
“So, did you ever get Karen to read this one?” Scott asks. “I thought it might be right up her alley being all ‘Desperate Housewives’ and what not.”
Angie almost chokes on the Diet Coke she’s drinking. She laughs, saying, “We are talking about Gavin’s wife, Karen . . . my friend and former sorority sister . . . the very same one who only bothers to read a magazine if there are tips on how to reduce wrinkles or prevent split ends?”
We all share a laugh. I’ve known Angie since college. She and Karen became inseparable when they rushed the same sorority. After graduation, however, reality struck most of us who understood the value of a hard day’s work, a group Karen never aspired to become a part of. Angie showed a lot of promise and Scott and I quickly brought her on as our assistant as soon as we started the company a few years later. She’s been with us ever since, almost four years now. I think Angie now qualifies more as my friend than Karen’s, but even I don’t have the balls to tell Karen that.
Karen couldn’t be more different from Angie now. We got married right after graduation and she proceeded to make a career out of being a social butterfly. I was so busy working my way up as a production assistant that I never even noticed how she truly lacked ambition to do anything in life besides garner a fashionable entourage. But our life works for us. She stays out of my business and I stay out of hers. It’s kind of like the way we were back in college—friends who keep each other grounded while living our own lives. Only now we have sex. Occasionally.
“No, she didn’t read it,” I tell them, waving the bartender over. “What’ll it be guys?” I raise my eyebrows at them awaiting their drink orders.
“Oh, no,” Angie says. “You’re not getting me drunk again on the road. Hangovers and airplanes do not play well together, especially when the flight from Chicago to L.A. is not a particularly short one. I’m calling it a night, boys.” She leans in and gives us each a hug before exiting the hotel bar to go up to her room.
“Scotch and soda for me,” Scott says to the bartender. Then he looks at me. “I’ll puke on a plane. Doesn’t bother me.”
I laugh at him as I order my own drink and we turn our barstools around to peruse the area for Scott’s next conquest. “What about that brunette over there?” I motion to the woman sitting at a table in the corner of the bar playing with her phone.
“Nah, she looks desperate,” he says.
“How can you possibly tell that?” I ask.
“She’s been checking us out since we got here. Clearly she’s here alone. Too easy a target,” he says.
That’s Scott Carlson for you. Always up for a challenge. As if being the starting quarterback on his college football team wasn’t enough, he has to have the bad boy look that all women swoon over with his spiky hair and tatted up arms. It’s amazing that we ever get anyone to take us seriously in the film production business. I guess that’s why I get to take point on a lot of the public appearances. Makes our company seem a little more clean-cut.
“Okay, how about the one at the end of the bar with the big teeth?” I nod over his shoulder at an attractive woman.
“Now, that’s what I’m talking about,” he says, turning around to check her out. He quickly turns back and says, “Too old.” He shivers. “After Gretchen, I swore off anyone over thirty.”
I raise my eyebrows at my thirty-one-year-old partner.
“What?” he says, holding his hands up in surrender. “You only live once, man and I’m not getting any younger. Not all of us can still be in our twenties, you know.” He slams back the rest of his drink and motions for another. “Hey, that reminds me, I got some ‘save the date’ thingy from Karen the other day. She’s really doing this one up, huh?”