Coffee To Go (Chapter Nine, p. 2)

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Sitting on her balcony with a glass of wine, she tried to persuade herself that she was being completely unreasonable. We are just friends and I have no claim on him. Who he dates is none of my business, and why am I getting so upset anyway? During the following week, she did her best to keep her mind on her work and provide good service, but her evenings were spent staring at the wall, feeling nauseated, and wondering what was wrong with her. She didn't want to talk to Russ, so she let the answering machine pick up her calls. He started leaving messages on the weekend, but she ignored them, hoping he would give up.

Monday after work, she was on her way to her car in the parking lot, when he came up behind her, took her by the arm, and walked her, resisting, to his truck.

"What the hell do you think you are doing?" Melanie tried to pull away from him.

"We're going to go have a chat. Hop in." He held the truck door open. "We can do this the easy way or the hard way, but do it we will. Your choice."

Melanie was aware enough to know by the tension in his jaw that he meant what he said. Reluctantly and angrily, she climbed up and slid onto the seat, then slammed the door. Once Russ was behind the wheel and they were moving, she said, "I didn't take you for a bully."

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