When Molly pulled up outside the clinic on Sunday morning, Nick Mancini’s hybrid was already parked at the curb. She wondered how long he’s been sitting there and if he was an early bird, the kind who rose at five A.M. and needed only a few hours’ sleep. Or maybe he was trying to make a good impression. Of course, she’d arrived early, too, and that had nothing to do with impressing him. For once, she hadn’t had to spend an excessive amount of time taming her hair so it didn’t resemble something you slapped on the end of a pole and used in place of a Swiffer.
She dragged herself out of her car and walked to the passenger side of the hybrid. He popped the lock, and she slid into the seat beside N MAN 1 and engaged her safety belt. Today, he wore tan slacks and a black T-shirt that more than accomplished its job of defining his impressive set of pecs, abs, and prize-winning biceps. She figured him for a gym rat.
“Good morning.” He greeted her with a smile and a drink container from Starbucks that looked exactly like the one in his hand. “I didn’t know if you had time for coffee, or even if you drank coffee, or what kind you liked. I took a chance on a mochachino raspberry grande. Is regular okay?”
Was he telepathic? Mochachino raspberry grande, four of which she’d already awarded him for his looks, was her very favorite. She rarely sprang for a grande, though, and regular was the only way she drank her coffee. A needed jolt most days.
“Thanks.” She smiled and didn’t have to force it. She parked her purse in her lap along with a couple of folders that contained unfurnished apartment ads from the Chronicle and tips she’d gleaned from Craigslist and other Internet sites. She also brought along a couple of local independent publications that advertised rental properties. She pried the top off her container. The subtle aroma of chocolate mixed with the robust blend of coffee made her want to moan with pleasure. She put that on hold and took a few sips before replacing the lid.
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