Below you’ll find another sample of my upcoming project. As always, these words are mine, unedited, and subject to change. Enjoy!
“Okay,” I said simply. “Let’s order.”
She eyed me for a moment longer, probably trying to decide if she wanted to push the issue but then, thankfully, she nodded and returned her attention to her menu. Our waiter appeared at my side and we gave him our order. I made sure to request a bottle of hot sauce for my collard greens. I thought it was a simple request, but when he gave me an apologetic smile that I was unfortunately all too familiar with receiving at the fancy-ass restaurants Shanice brought me too, I begin to think differently.
“My apologies, ma’am, but we don’t offer condiments to guests before they have tried the food.”
My brows lifted in surprise, and I looked at Shanice. I hope she was making a mental note of this for the review she would be writing.
“Oh, wow. Okay then. Well, keep it on standby for me.”
He winked at me. “I don’t think you’ll need it, but I will definitely do so.” Then he trudged off to submit our requests to the kitchen.
Immediately, I turned back to Shanice. “What kind of controlling mess is that?”
She shrugged, obviously used to the quirks of niche restaurants. “I don’t know about controlling. It is highly arrogant, though. But hey, if it’s warranted then I’m all for it.” She lifted her glass and took a sip of the green beverage.
“I guess.” I pushed my chair back from the table and stood. “I’m going to the restroom. I’ll be right back.” I made my way through to the back of the dining area cautiously. I was unfamiliar with the layout and didn’t want to end up in some place I wasn’t supposed to be. After turning down a hall and passing a couple of doors, I finally found it.
Getting back to the table turned out to be more difficult than I anticipated, and I ended up turned around and coming out on the other section of the dining room. That side was empty, save for one table. The two men who were taking pictures outside sat at the one occupied table against the wall.
The one who had been in front of the camera had lowered his hood and was hunched over his plate. His back was to me, and I noticed that his head was bald and shiny like he oiled it regularly. I had to pass them to round the partition and get to the side where I was sitting, and I tried to do so quickly. Being over here with just them was awkward as hell.
I’d almost passed them up when something on the table caught my eye. On the corner near the jar of succulents was a bottle of hot sauce, and my heart leapt at the sight of the round wooden top. Without thinking, I stopped and turned to them. I faced the bigger guy—the photographer—since he was in my direct line of sight.
The big guy held up a hand, cutting me off. “No pictures or autographs, please. Just let us eat in peace.”
My head snapped back at his rudeness. The other man’s head popped up. “Aye, Boobie! Chill out with that, man.”
My lip curled and I slapped a hand on my hip. “First of all, I don’t even know who you are. Second, why would you assume I want anything from you when your inconsiderate ass can’t even hold the door open for a woman behind you!”
His eyes widened with surprise. “Hold up—”
I cut him off. “No, you hold up! I came over here to ask for the damn hot sauce, but if the shit means that much to you then keep it with your rude ass!” I turned around and damn near power-walked to the end of the section, hitting the curve on two wheels.
When I dropped down into my seat, chest heaving with anger, I noticed that Shanice was looking at me crazy.
“Girl, everyone heard you over there.”
“Huh?” I looked around and saw that several patrons were gaping at me. “How?”
Shanice pointed to the partition. “That thing isn’t sound-proof. It doesn’t even go up to the ceiling. We are in one big room.” She leveled me with a knowing look. “And, you were yelling.”
I huffed. “Well, all I wanted was some damn hot sauce. That fool was rude as fuck and for what? He talking about a damn autograph, and I’m just trying to season my food!”