CHAPTER 19 – SECOND CHANCES
Frances Del Monte, Vivian Furlish, and Amy Richardson sat in three side by side chairs at Snippets Salon while Liam and Genevieve applied the appropriate mix of color to each of their heads of hair. Magazines lay open on their laps, but they were too busy talking among themselves to be bothered with catching up on the latest Hollywood gossip. With all the goings on, there was enough scandal of their own to keep them gabbing for a few weeks at the very least.
Wearing a simple white blouse, thigh-high black leather boots with her signature mini-mini skirt, kohl black eyes and flaming red lips, Genevieve had the appearance of goth vamp meets school girl, which is likely the look she was after. Her newly cut and bleached hair was teased into a beehive up-do. Without a doubt she turned heads, and not because her look was outlandish, but because she was drop dead gorgeous.
“You ladies seem to be enjoying each other’s company,” said Genevieve. “I like it.” She smiled at the three women while she dabbed the last of the auburn to Fran’s roots. Liam had just placed the dryer hood over Vivian’s head.
“Can you keep it on low, honey? I can’t hear when it’s on high. I don’t want to miss anything, you know.”
“Not a problem, Vivian.” Liam set the dial and a soft purr followed. Then he returned to Amy.
“Do you want yours on low too?” He asked sarcastically.
“Are you kidding me? Of course I do. Besides, Mrs. Furlish over there speaks very softly.” She laughed at the quizzical look on her face. She obviously hadn’t heard a thing.
Liam placed a few more foils in Amy’s long locks before setting the dryer on her, while Genevieve came around and set down sterilized scissors and combs on the side tables beside each chair, and stacked clean, folded towels in the open cupboard. The front door was locked with a Closed for Lunch sign on it. The three women knew they were getting special treatment and loved it.
“All righty, I’ll leave you three alone to your chit chat while your color sets. Just holler if you need anything, okay?”
Genevieve followed Liam into the staff room and closed the door behind her.
“I was wondering how long it would take those two,” said Fran casually. Fran, Vivian, and Amy looked at one another and giggled.
“This has been quite the week, hasn’t it?” She continued. “We’ve managed to corner and catch a thief, survive a club trashing and shooting, save a business from foreclosure, and play matchmaker to not one but three different couples.”
“And revive the marriage of another,” reminded Vivian Furlish triumphantly.
“How do you know that?” Asked Fran a tad defensively.
“Oh, you people aren’t the only ones who have their eyes and ears open around here.” She smiled coyly. “And you’re forgetting one more major news flash.”
Amy and Fran looked at one another, stunned.
“Mrs. Furlish, since when do you use that kind of lingo?” Asked Amy.
“Lingo schmingo,” said Fran. “The question is, do you know who did the big buy-out of The Lady?”
Both Vivian and Amy seemed shocked, but Fran wasn’t buying it.
“Don’t look so surprised,” Fran said, staring directly at Amy. “Someone with a big heart and a lot of moolah anonymously stepped up. You wouldn’t know who that would be now, would you, Amy?”
Amy looked sheepish. “Does it matter?”
Franny grinned and relaxed. “No, I suppose not. I’m just glad to be back in business, with my husband and The Lady, because I’m married to both, and it sucks when things aren’t working out.”
“You can say that again,” Amy chimed in, and Fran and Amy laughed.
“Who’s The Lady,” asked Vivian Furlish, finally revealing just how little she really did know, and how little she could hear.
Just then Genevieve popped her head out of the staff room. “Anybody want coffee?”
“No! We want you to get back in there and make good use of the forty minutes of time you have before you have to remove this blasted color,” hollered Fran. Genevieve shut the door.
“I don’t know about you two,” Amy said. “But what do you say we turn the music up?”
Hesitantly, Genevieve approached Liam from behind as he stood in front of the coffee maker waiting for the coffee to brew.
“A watched pot never boils,” she said in a low whisper. Liam turned around. “Didn’t you know that?”
Liam just smiled, reached out and pulled her body in to his. “All I needed was a distraction,” he said.
Before Liam knew what hit him, Genevieve’s lips were on his. Warm and sensual, their kisses joined them together at long last. His large, strong hands wrapped around her tiny waist and felt the tautness of her belly and back, her thin but shapely hips, her small, round breasts that had the best nipples he’d ever seen protruding from anyones clothing. Now he knew. Her skin was deliciously soft and warm as he groped around her with gentle affection. She smelled sweet and fresh, like the day after it rains. He buried his face into her neck and she turned her head, craning to meet him. She enjoyed his touch, his attentions, more than she could say.
He lifted her up on the counter and spread her legs so he could bring her body close to his. They kissed some more, open-mouthed, erotic, seductive. Then Liam pulled back.
“Do you know what I want to do?” He said to Genevieve, eyes staring dreamily at her. “I want to take you to my place. I have a great place, did you know that?” Genevieve shook her head but didn’t say a word, as if mesmerized by his melodic voice. “It’s near the glades, surrounded by giant oak and banyan trees. In the morning when I rise, the wild parakeets sing their wake-up call. I picture us there, lying in bed while shadows from the nearby trees cast their dancing light upon the bed.”
“And, I’ll light a fire in the small, cozy living room and lay out my fur rugs to lie you down on. Then, once the room heats up, I’ll peel off each article of clothing one by one until your naked body shimmers in the firelight. Don’t worry, you won’t be cold. The furs and fire will keep you nice and warm.”
“Then what?” She asked with a mischievous grin.
“Then I’ll ask you to remove my clothes so that we can both lie naked together by the fire. Of course I’ll have candles lit, and will have poured us each a glass of Shiraz that we will sip while we talk and touch, exploring each others minds and bodies. As my appetizer I will rub wine lightly upon your breasts, then lick it off. How does that sound?”
“It sounds like I need an appetizer too. I think mine will be your earlobes. They look soft, tender, and juicy.” Genevieve bent forward and with care, began to suck on Liam’s right earlobe. His heart rate increased ten-fold, and he squirmed and shifted on his feet. He felt his erection but didn’t care. He could have her right there on the spot if he wanted to – would have, if it hadn’t been that he intended to do things differently this time. No more random fucking, letting desire overcome sense or love. He wanted to show respect. He wanted to love Genevieve like she’d never been loved before, and maybe if he did, she’d love him back equally.
She let him go, but not before brushing her nose against his cheek, following his jawline with her lips until she reached the crease of his collarbone and neck. There she breathed in his scent for as long as she could before sitting back again.
“What else?” She asked.
Liam looked at her. There was so much love in his eyes that it took her breath away. Never had she encountered such passion before. She could hardly believe this was real.
“Well,” Liam continued, somewhat shyly. “We would make love like there’s no tomorrow, that’s what. We would discover each other’s inner and outer beings, and leave no question unanswered, no stone unturned.” He looked up at her again. “I want to know your essence, G. I want to soak you all in until we are one. I didn’t used to believe something so glorious could happen, but now that I’ve met you, I do. Do you believe this can happen, Genevieve, sweet, sweet, Genevieve?”
Genevieve rested her head in Liam’s shoulder and sighed.
“You know, I never would have expected this. I mean, I work for you, we’ve hung out together, and I knew we got along. The rest…well, I just never thought much about it. I never thought much about you in that way, although I did find myself gravitating to you without realizing it. Even after I met Miguel, it was the salon, it was you that kept leaping to the forefront of my mind. I didn’t plan it or think it, things just sort of happened.”
Liam gazed adoringly into Genevieve’s sea green eyes as if to say, I’m home.
“That’s the best way”