Loyal Lawyer - Jeannine Colette Page 0,1

old woman move into her apartment. I bet he was banging her too!

I pick up my phone to text the son of a bitch, but his number is no longer in my contacts. I erased it when I moved out in some sort of metaphoric cleaning of the slate.

Now, I can’t quickly message him like I want.

Instead, I have to open a new message and enter his number before my thumbs start moving, typing out a message with the same fury that’s racing through me.

I hope you had fun, putting holes in the wall with the bed!

The text bubbles instantly appear, and I stand, absolutely fuming, as I wait for his response.

I feel like this is a euphemism for something.

Although I have been known to be a bit of a wallbanger.

This is a joke to you? Typical.

First, you screwed around behind my back.

Then, you damaged and skipped out on paying rent on the place that was in my name!

I believe you have some misplaced anger here.

Don’t be so coy. I want Lady Featherington too!

She has delicate feet, and I know you’re not tending to her hair needs.

She definitely sounds like she belongs in your care.

I have a great doctor and stylist recommendations.

And I want my Loui Jover back.

You have excellent taste in art.

What is wrong with you?

Let me explain …

Explain? I haven’t heard from the man in a hundred and eighty days, and now, he wants to talk it out?

My phone rings, and Hardin’s number appears. I pick it up immediately.

“Oh, you have some explaining to do all right. And by explaining, I mean, forty-five hundred dollars, a piece of contemporary art, and a Pomeranian!”

A deep, sultry chuckle sounds from the other end of the line. “Ah, Lady Featherington is a dog. That makes more sense now.”

I freeze, confused by who the person I’m speaking with could be because that deep baritone voice is most definitely not my ex-boyfriend.

“You’re not Hardin.”

“Thankfully, I’m not. You seem pretty pissed at him.”

I look around like I’m being pranked or something but then realize I’m the one who texted him. “Listen, I don’t know what kind of joke you’re playing, but just put my ex on the phone.”

“I can’t,” he says so nonchalantly that I want to reach in the phone and smack him.

“Why not?”

“Because he’s not here.”

“Where the hell is he?” I yell, holding up my arm to the side and leaning into the call like he can see how mad I am through the line. I must look like a madwoman, standing on this city street, acting a fool, waving my coffee around, but I’m so angry that I don’t even care right now.

“You have the wrong number,” he states matter-of-factly.

I pause, pulling my phone away from my face to check the number and then bringing it back to my ear. “Excuse me. No, I don’t.”

“The number you texted was not your ex-boyfriend. Believe me, I’ve never had a dog named Lady Featherington, but I have had this exact number for over ten years.”

“Of course this is the right number. I dialed it myself.”

“Are you positive?” I can hear the condescending tone in his voice, albeit with a little teasing added.

I hold the phone away from my face again, staring at the numbers. They seem perfectly correct at first. And then I go one by one again and realize in my haste to text, I inverted the last two digits. I bring the phone back to my ear.

“Oh my God. This is so embarrassing.” I drop my hand to my side and tilt my head up to the sky in frustration.

That smooth laugh sounds again. “Happens to the best of us. I’m sorry to hear you’re having trouble. You said this is with an ex-boyfriend?”

I sigh. “Yes. I’m sorry to bother you. Have a nice day.”

“Wait, please. I’m dying to know how you came across the name Lady Featherington for a dog.”

I let out a breath and laugh about the entire situation. I mean, right now, that’s all I can do. “It’s from a book I read, and then Netflix made it into a series called Bridgerton. She’s this quick-witted and outspoken anonymous gossip columnist. I felt the name fit our tiny Pomeranian, who was quick to bark at anyone who walked by.”

“So, I take it, he kept the dog in the breakup?”

“Yes, that asshole,” I say without thinking twice. I mean, I am talking to a complete stranger. “I’m sorry. I’m not usually so foul-mouthed. And I surely don’t need to