Home > On Dublin Street (On Dublin Street #1)(4)

On Dublin Street (On Dublin Street #1)(4)
Author: Samantha Young

The Suit looked back at me now, and whatever he had caught in my face made him relax. “Interesting,” he murmured.

No. Not interesting. I didn’t want to be interesting to this guy. “I’m not giving you my number.”

He grinned again. “I didn’t ask for it. And even if I wanted it, I wouldn’t ask for it. I have a girlfriend.”

I ignored the disappointed flip of my stomach and apparently the filter between my brain and my mouth. “Then stop looking at me like that.”

The Suit seemed amused. “I have a girlfriend but I’m not blind. Just because I can’t do anything doesn’t mean I’m not allowed to look.”

I was not excited by this guy’s attention. I am a strong, independent woman. Glancing out of the window, I noted with relief that we were at Queen Street Gardens. Dublin Street was right around the corner.

“Here’s good, thanks,” I called to the cab.

“Whereabouts?” the cab driver called back to me.

“Here,” I replied a little more sharply than I meant to but breathed a sigh of relief when the cab driver’s turn signal started ticking and the car pulled over to a stop. Without another look or word to the Suit, I handed the driver some money and slid a hand along the door handle.

“Wait.”

I froze and shot the Suit a wary look over my shoulder. “What?”

“Do you have a name?”

I smiled, feeling relief now that I was getting away from him and the bizarre attraction between us. “Actually, I have two.”

I jumped out of the cab, ignoring the traitorous thrill of pleasure that cascaded over me at the sound of his answering chuckle.

***

As soon as the door swung open and I took in my first sight of Ellie Carmichael, I knew I was probably going to like her. The tall blonde was wearing a trendy play suit, a blue trilby hat, a monocle, and a fake mustache.

She blinked at me with wide, pale blue eyes.

Bemused, I had to ask, “Is this… a bad time?”

Ellie stared at me a moment as if confused by my very reasonable question considering her outfit. As if it suddenly occurred to her that she was in possession of a fake mustache, she pointed at it. “You’re early. I was tidying up.”

Tidying up a trilby, monocle and a mustache? I glanced behind her into a bright, airy reception hall. A bike with no front wheel was propped against the far wall, photographs and an assortment of post cards and other random clippings were attached to a board braced against a walnut cabinet. Two pairs of boots and a pair of black pumps were scattered haphazardly under a row of pegs overflowing with jackets and coats. The floors were hardwood. Very nice.

I looked back at Ellie with a huge grin on my face, feeling good about the entire situation. “Are you on the run from the mafia?”

“Pardon?”

“The disguise.”

“Oh.” She laughed and stepped back from the door, gesturing me into the apartment. “No, no. I had friends over last night and we had a little bit too much to drink. All my old Halloween costumes were dragged out.”

I smiled again. That sounded fun. I missed Rhian and James.

“You’re Jocelyn, right?”

“Yeah. Joss,” I corrected her. I hadn’t been Jocelyn since before my parents died.

“Joss,” she repeated, grinning at me as I took my first steps inside the ground floor apartment. It smelled great. Fresh and clean.

Like the apartment I was leaving, this one was also Georgian, except it had once been an entire townhouse. Now it was split into two apartments. Well, actually, next door was a boutique and the rooms above us belonged to it. I didn’t know about the rooms above us, but the boutique itself was very nice with handmade one-of-a-kind clothes. This apartment…

Wow.

The walls were so smooth, I knew they had to have been plastered recently and whoever had restored the place had done wonders. It had tall baseboards and thick coving to compliment the period property. The ceilings went on forever, as they did in my old apartment. The walls were a cool white, but broken up by colorful and eclectic pieces of art work. The white should have been harsh, but the contrast of it against the dark walnut doors and hardwood flooring gave the apartment an air of quiet elegance.

I was in love already and I hadn’t even seen the rest of the place.

Ellie hurriedly took off the hat and mustache, spinning around to say something to me only to stop and grin sheepishly as she tore off the monocle she was still wearing. Shoving it aside on the walnut sideboard, she beamed brightly. She was a cheerful person. Usually I avoided cheerful people, but there was something about Ellie. She was kind of charming.

“I’ll give you a tour first, shall I?

“Sounds good.”

Striding to the door on the left nearest me, Ellie pushed it open. “Bathroom. It’s in an unconventional place, I know, right near the front door, but it’s got everything you need.”

Uh… I’ll say, I thought, tentatively stepping inside.

My flip-flops echoed off the shiny cream tiles on the floor, tiles that covered every inch of the bathroom except for the ceiling which was painted a buttery color and inset with warm spotlights.

The bathroom was huge.

Running my hand along the bath tub with its gold claw feet, I immediately envisioned myself in here. Music playing, candles flickering, a glass of red wine in my hand as I soaked in the tub and numbed my mind to… everything. The tub sat center of the room. In the back, right-hand corner was a double shower cubicle with the biggest showerhead I’d ever seen. To my left was a modern glass bowl situated atop a white ceramic shelf. That was a sink?

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