The party was at a prestigious hotel. The lobby was all red and gold and chandeliers. Kanesha seemed nervous.
I felt quite at home. I sensed no succubi, I sensed no…oh dear. I did sense the presence of my dad somewhere around. “He’d better not put cayenne in the champagne,” I murmured.
“Don’t give him ideas.”
Not that we were getting champagne. I wasn’t risking it. I took sparkling cider instead and tried to find Sarlac in the crowd.
Instead? I found a reporter. Kanesha slipped off, murmuring about getting some food. Traitor.
“So, what’s your connection to Mr. Sarlac?”
“I accidentally stopped his nephew from being kidnapped.”
She stopped. Looked at me. “I can’t run that. Nobody would believe it.”
I grinned. “Truth, fiction, right?” A pause. “We’re just friends.”
“My girlfriend.” I wasn’t going to make any bones about it.
“Aha. Thought you didn’t look like you were just gal pals.”
I could see the cogs turning in her head as she tried to work out how to turn the two of us into a story. I was actually quite relieved that she didn’t seem to be coming to a solution. She did continue with, “Tell me a bit about yourself.”
“I’m a model,” I explained. “Kanesha’s studying to be a teacher.”
Profession. This was Washington and it was a safe ground, and thankfully I escaped a moment later as she noticed more interesting prey. Kanesha was returning with two plates full of assorted appetizers.
“It’s okay. She wasn’t too bad. And I think she’s much more interested in…” I tailed off. “…that actor.”
Somebody moderately famous, if I could only recall his name.
“Oh, that’s…” She paused, then located it. “Bart Luton.”
“Right.” I didn’t add that he was handsome, which he was. He was also flirting with the reporter.
Or maybe he was intentionally occupying her so the rest of us could have some peace. I sampled the food Kanesha had brought – one small taste of everything. “Mm…could get used to this.”
“Well, when you’re a famous model.”
I grinned. “You’re the one with the better profession.”
“But it doesn’t pay enough for this.” She sounded a little wistful.
“Maybe it should. In the mean time you can be my kept woman.”
She giggled. “Alright.”