Mistaken Identity by Lisa Chapter 16

Republisher’s Note: Manny react to each other.

Mistaken Identity by Lisa Chapter 16

At the moment Danny felt as if he were caught in a time warp. It was though everything but this breath taking girl had fallen away. Gone was the blaring music, gone was the noise of the crowd gone was everything but her.

Without warning his feet took over and he found himself making his way to where she stood. He couldn’t have stopped himself even he had wanted to, which he didn’t.

Michelle caught her breath as each step brought him closer to her. Her palms grew damp and she fidgeted nervously alongside of Sarah. There was something about his eyes that held her spellbound.

“Are you enjoying yourselves, ladies?” Danny directed the question to both yet never took his eyes from Michelle. She felt the heat radiating off of her body as those smoldering eyes of his caressed her.

“Yes, we are thank you,” Sarah said as she pinched Michelle’s arm forcing her to speak.

“It’s a great party……really great,”

“Glad you think so. I must admit that it turned out much better then I had expected.” Danny easily leaned his body against the table positioning himself just within Michelle’s reach. “So what about the band? You think we should book them to play here again?” he asked not particularly caring if he got an answer or not just enjoying being close to her.

“DEFINITELY!” Sarah piped in knowing full well that neither of them knew she was alive.
Sarah’s voice snapped Michelle back to reality. The fantasy that she was letting herself have about this devilishly handsome man before her was trouble from the word go.

“Sarah’s right. They are really good. I bet they have a hell of a following. Should bring you a nice steady crowd.”

“Wow….sounds like you really know what you’re talking about,” Danny couldn’t help but looked surprised.

“I know a thing or two,” she countered playfully, “I have a friend who runs a club a lot like this one,” the words were out of her mouth before she had even realized it. Michelle could have kicked herself, but it was still hard at times to remember that that part of her life didn’t exist anymore. Two months of being Melanie Branson certainly wasn’t about to wipe away nineteen years of being Michelle Bauer. She also knew the drill, Agent Lucas had done his best to drum it into her head. Steer clear of the past as much as possible. Right now though she had managed to travel backwards using both feet.

“Maybe you’d let me pick you brain about a few other ideas that I have for this place,” Danny saw the opening and took it.

“I’m sure you have more then enough help here. You don’t need my two cents too,” Michelle desperately tried to move the conversation away from this subject. Besides who was she kidding, she couldn’t let herself be sucked into all of this again. I mean sure he was gorgeous, charismatic and all that but her nerves were still a bit raw from Jesse.

“No, really I would love to hear how your friend’s club was run.”

Michelle stifled a laugh at the thought of using the term friend to describe Drew. The words friend and Drew Jacobs in the same sentence when it came to the way Michelle felt about the girl just wasn’t happening.

“Melanie, I’m going to grab a drink. You want?” Sarah asked.

“Yeah sure.” Michelle was happy to have a reason to turn away from him. The longer she spent this close to Danny the more she couldn’t remember why is was that these feelings were a bad thing.

She knew why though. How could she have anything real that was based on a lie? Her entire existence now was just that. One big fat lie. Exactly how was she supposed to get close to someone when she didn’t even know who the hell she really was anymore? A relationship for her would be far too complicated. She should be happy with her friendship with Sarah and leave it go at that.

“Seriously, I would love to discuss business with you,” Danny pushed.

“I’m no business woman by far, Mr. Sampson.”

“Call me, Danny, please,” even though he knew the reason for using his uncle’s name it was still difficult to hear himself being called that.

“Like I said, Danny,” she stressed, “I was only teasing before. I don’t really think that I could be of much help. I better find Sarah.” With those words she was gone.

Danny couldn’t help but feel as though he had missed something or maybe he had just let Albert get the better of him. Just it had been strange. One moment he could feel the connection that they were starting to make and then wham it was gone.

“What the hell just happened here?” he said to himself.

“The chef says there’s a problem and he will only speak to you,” Carl’s irritated voice poked at Danny’s thought.

“Tell him I’ll be right there,” Danny turned to looked at her one last time. His head told him to steer clear, that this one was better left untouched, but his heart had an entirely different idea in mind.

Michelle felt his eyes boring holes in her flesh but she didn’t dare turn to look at him. She couldn’t let him think that she was interested, even though all the signs had been there. The quickening of her pulse when she thought about his touch was a dead give away.

“Stop it!!!” she scolded herself.

“Stop what? I thought you wanted a drink,” Sarah returned not understanding what was happening.

“I do.” Michelle reached for the tall glass of champagne. “I see we are learning the finer points,” Michelle tipped her glass to Sarah’s referring to her earlier lesson of obtaining alcohol on their plane ride together.

“Piece of cake,” Sarah smiled, “Where’s Mr. HUNK MAN?” Sarah nudged at Michelle’s arm.

“I couldn’t say.”

“Excuse me?”

“I don’t know……..what?!?!?!” Michelle asked as Sarah starred at her in disbelief.

“WHAT!?!?!?! I mean for god sakes even I could feel the electricity between the two of you from way over here. What the hell happened?”

“Nothing.”

“You aren’t making any sense. It was so obvious that he finds you attractive and you do him. It’s a pretty simple equation. One boy plus one girl equals date.”

“Not necessarily.”

“It does from where I come from,” Sarah countered.

“Let’s just say it’s more complicated then that.”

“Complicated my ass! You are a healthy single woman and by god he is a healthy single man. Who’s too hot for words I might add and he has the hots for you to boot. That’s the least complicated I’ve ever seen it be.”

“Sarah, please just leave it alone,” Michelle pleaded as she searched the room once more hoping to slip out before she had to see Danny again because if that was to happen she didn’t know if she would be able to walk away.

Danny stood there while the chef spoke but he hadn’t heard a single word that the man had said. His thoughts were fixated on Melanie. Her hair, her eyes the way her dress clung to the curves of her body that’s all that Danny cared about at the moment. That and the fact that she had turned so cold in the blink of an eye. It hadn’t made any sense. One minute she was joking and teasing him and the next it was like he was talking to a completely different person. It had been so strange.

“Danny,” Carl’s voice again intruded on his private thoughts.

“Huh?”

“Well what should we do?”

“Do?”

“We are running out of food,” Carl looked at him in shock, “Were you even listening?”

“Yes,” Danny lied, “Check the freezer. I ordered extra appetizers just in case. We can use those……I know,” Danny shot a look at the chef before he could speak, “I know that they aren’t home made Reggie, but right now I think the customers are far too ‘happy’,” Danny said as he made mock quotes in the air referring to the drunken state of people in the room, “to really notice the difference. Besides it’s almost time for last call. We can make do until then.”

“I will do it,” the chef said, “but I won’t like it.” All Danny could do was shake his head and laugh. Reggie was a character alright but one hell of a chef.

“Carl,” Danny called as he began to walk away.

“Yeah.”

“Can I ask you something?” Carl nodded, “That friend of your daughter’s, Melanie I think her name is. What do you know about her?”

“Nothing really why?”

“Just wondering.”

“Never saw her before today. I have to go check on the booze,” Carl shuffled away before he could ask anything further.

Danny exited the kitchen to see the crowd thinning out just a bit. He couldn’t help but feel proud of his accomplishment. Tonight had been a great success. In more ways then one he thought as he scanned the room in search of Melanie. He was disappointed when he was unable to locate her. Maybe they were in the ladies room. He always thought it was funny how women do that as a group thing. Pilar had clued him in once, that the reason for it was to discuss the men that they had just met. Danny could only hope that was the reason this time as well.

“Well son,” Albert said coming to side beside him, “looks like you made your mark on the state of Texas. This night has been a wonderful success.”

“Yes, Danny. I was completely wrong not to trust you,” Jenny added touching Danny’s arm gently.

“Thank you both. Well it looks like it’s about time to call last call. I think I will do the honors.”

Carl felt his blood boil as he watched Albert and Jenny heap praise on the golden boy. It looked as though he had lost an ally in Jenny now. That for one reason or another the prince had won her over as well. At least with Jenny needling him every chance she got that left the door open a crack for him to nudge his was back into the heart of the business as it should have been, but now it looked like if he didn’t watch out the door was going to be slammed in his face permanently.

“LISTEN EVERYONE…….” Danny said into the microphone, “I WANT TO THANK YOU ALL FOR COMING TONIGHT. THE TWO STEP SHOWS PROMISE FOR MORE GREAT NIGHTS LIKE THIS ON TO COME!!!” the crowd responded with a round of hoots and hollers, “SO PLEASE COME AGAIN AND THIS IS LAST CALL FOR THE NIGHT!!!” Danny handed the microphone back to the lead singer as the music started again.

“So what happened with Carl’s daughter’s friend……..ah”

“Melanie,” Danny said.

“Yes, Melanie. What happened?”

“Nothing.”

“NOTHING?!?!?”

“Nothing,” Danny said as he continued to stack the chairs on the tables.

“That doesn’t make any sense. I saw the way she was looking at you.”

“I told you you needed glasses,” Danny said quite seriously. He was thoroughly upset by the fact that she had left without so much as a good-bye. He had to stop himself from having these thoughts. In all reality at the moment what did the girl really owe him. NOTHING. She didn’t owe him a good-bye so why was he so unnerved right now.

“Not hardly! I know what I saw. I know that she had her eye on you.”

“Well then maybe you should have clued her in on that fact as well because she certainly didn’t’ think so.”

“So what are you saying that you are just giving up without a fight?”

“Giving up?” Danny echoed, “What are you talking about? There isn’t anything to give up. It’s not like we have even had a date Uncle Albert.”

“You mark my words, Daniel…….you and that girl are destined.”

Danny found himself laughing at that remark. Destiny hadn’t brought him much of anything good so far maybe just maybe he was due.

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