Home > Her Best Worst Mistake (Elizabeth and Violet #2)(8)

Her Best Worst Mistake (Elizabeth and Violet #2)(8)
Sarah Mayberry

“I know.”

“Can we call Andy now?”

“Absolutely.”

She called her cousin, and after ten minutes of cajoling that soon degenerated into outright sucking up, she managed to secure his promise to run a search on Sam Blackwell. Elizabeth thanked her profusely and went back upstairs to sleep off more of her hangover. At three that afternoon, Andy called back with the last known address for Sam Blackwell. Feeling a little dazed, Violet put the “back in five minutes” sign in the window and shut the shop up before heading upstairs.

She walked into a shining, immaculate apartment and the smell of cleaning fluid.

“I hope you don’t mind. I needed something to do while waiting. Other than sit around and doubt myself, I mean,” Elizabeth said as she straightened the pile of magazines on the coffee table.

“Why would I mind? You can stay any time.” Violet marveled at how nice her living space looked when it wasn’t buried under papers and discarded clothes.

Elizabeth’s gaze dropped to the piece of paper in her hand. “Is that it? Did Andy call?”

Violet handed the piece of paper over. She watched as Elizabeth’s eyebrows shot toward her hairline.

“Australia? He’s in Australia?”

“According to Andy he is.”

“Philip Island. I’ve never even heard of it.”

“I looked it up. It’s south of Melbourne. A beach community.”

Elizabeth stared at the note for a long beat before meeting Violet’s gaze.

“Then I guess I’d better book a ticket for Australia.”

“We could try to call him first.”

“No,” Elizabeth said firmly. “I want to do this in person. And it will be good to get away for a few days.”

“Then lets book you that ticket, baby cakes.”

Four days later, Violet waited until the customer she’d just served had left the store before dialing her friend’s cell number. She’d been counting down the hours, checking the arrivals information for Tullamarine airport in Melbourne, Australia, waiting for her friend to touch down.

She bit her thumb nail as she waited for E to pick up.

“Violet.” Elizabeth’s voice came down the line clear as a bell, almost as though she was in the next room instead of halfway around the world.

“E. How was your flight? What’s happening? Have you spoken to him yet?”

They’d discussed strategy before Elizabeth left, so she knew her friend planned to go straight to her biological father’s house and make contact.

“Long. Not much. And no. I’m sitting out the front of his house right now, trying to get up the courage to knock on the door.”

Violet’s hand tightened on the phone. She could hear the fear in Elizabeth’s voice. Guilt ate at her. If only she had been able to leave the shop, she would have gone with her. Then Elizabeth wouldn’t be facing this huge challenge alone.

“You’re nervous,” Violet said.

“Just a little.”

“Don’t be. Once he gets to know you, he’ll be over the moon you’ve tracked him down.”

“I don’t know. Maybe I’m doing this all wrong. Maybe I should have made contact with a letter or email first, used a lawyer to break the ice...”

“No. You’ve done the right thing. And even if you haven’t, you’re there now. All you have to do is go knock on his door.”

“You make it sound so easy.”

Violet could hear the smile in her friend’s voice.

“Come on, E. You’re a woman on a mission, remember? You’re reclaiming your life, striking out on your own. Shaking off old Droopy Drawers was just the first step.”

“I wish you wouldn’t call him that. Just because I’ve decided not to marry him doesn’t mean he’s a bad person.”

“True. It’s not as though he goes around literally boring people to death. Although he took a fairly good stab at stifling the life out of you.”

“Vi...”

“Sorry. I just think it should be a punishable offense for someone as young as he is to carry on like a crusty old bugger. How many thirty-two year olds do you know who wear cardigans with leather elbow patches?”

“Just because he dresses conservatively doesn’t mean he’s crusty, Vi. He’s just ... conservative,” Elizabeth finished lamely.

“Conservative? I’m sorry, E, but that is not the word for a man who refuses to have sex in anything other than the missionary position. The word you’re looking for is repressed.”

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