Maxine

Free Maxine by SUE FINEMAN

Book: Maxine by SUE FINEMAN Read Free Book Online
Authors: SUE FINEMAN
Tags: General Fiction
surprised. “Me?”
    “Yeah, you. I brought you a new client, and the least you can do is buy lunch.”
    Gerry sighed and opened his wallet. Nick winked and Cara’s eyes danced. She didn’t offer to pay, but Nick knew she’d end up paying for it anyway. Gerry would figure out a way to include it in her bill.
    Without waiting for an invitation, Nick put the pizza on the table in Gerry’s office and pulled up a chair. Cara looked tired, beaten down. She needed a break anyway.
    Gerry stuffed his wallet in his pocket, took a piece of pizza, and leaned back in his chair. “So, Nick, how you been?”
    “What do you care?”
    “Come on, Nick. We were friends before the divorce.”
    Sure they were. That was before Lisa asked Gerry to represent her in the divorce. Before they became enemies.
    “Mmm, good pizza, except for the olives.” Cara picked them off and put them on Nick’s piece. “I don’t like olives.”
    “I’ll remember that,” said Nick, and he was rewarded with a warm smile.
    <>
     
    After lunch, Gerry drove them to the bank, where Cara and Gerry and Nick met with the bank manager. Cara set up an account for herself and one for Max and Company. Nick was surprised that she opened her personal account under the name Maxine Donatelli, but he didn’t say a word.
    When they finished at the bank, Gerry drove them to Urgent Care . Again, Cara used the name Maxine Donatelli. She insisted that Nick stay with her and hold her hand while the nurse removed her stitches. She refused to watch.
    Nick gave her a look and shook his head.
    “Shut up,” she muttered.
    The nurse peered closely at Cara’s face. “You look a little familiar.”
    “Everyone tells me that.”
    “I know what it is. On the news last night, they showed a picture of that missing heiress, Cara Andrews. You look a little like her.”
    “Imagine me, looking like her.”
    Nick caught Cara’s eye and winked, bringing a little smile. Nobody in their right mind would believe a woman like Cara Andrews would be with a guy like him. A few weeks ago, he wouldn’t have believed it himself. Yet here she was, a rich celebrity, living in his little house and pretending to be his wife. In some ways, she was like a scared little girl, yet there was a strength about her that he admired. With quiet resolve, she’d do what had to be done. And so would he. If that bastard she married put one finger on her, he’d have a fight on his hands.
    On the way back down the hill to the harbor, they talked about Lance’s television appearances and the message he was sending to the public about her being depressed or mentally ill.
    “Cara, did you leave a note for your husband when you left Seattle?” asked Gerry.
    “No, all I could think about was getting away before he realized I’d heard him.” She sighed heavily. “I thought about calling and leaving a message that I was with a friend, but what good would that do? He’d still say I was crazy or distraught, or whatever you want to call it.” She stared out the side window. “By the time he finds me, he’ll have everyone convinced I need ‘help.’ That kind of help I can do without.”
    From the backseat, Nick reached up and put his hand on her arm. She put her hand over his and held it there.
    Gerry asked, “Cara, where do your bills go?”
    “Some go to the house in Seattle and others go to my accountant in California.” She slapped her forehead. “Oh, the accountant will know about the boat when he gets the credit card bill.”
    “I’ll call him if you like.”
    “I don’t think it’ll do any good, Gerry. He reports to the trustees of my grandfather’s estate, not to me. I don’t know if Lance is in contact with them or not.”
    Gerry pulled into the parking lot at the marina and turned off the engine. “The trustees still handle the estate?”
    “Until my twenty-seventh birthday. That’s next week, Thursday.” Cara opened her door and turned back to Gerry. “Are you licensed to practice

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