Husband Rollover (Husband Series Book 4)(7)

By: Louise Cusack

“Nor should you,” Louella said quietly. “You’re creating a family, not matching linen. Color is irrelevant where love is concerned.”

Silence fell over the four of us because there was no arguing with that. But eventually Jill said, “Listen to you, talking about love. Nicholas has changed you.”

I smirked. “She’s in touch with her emotions.” Then I glanced at Jill and we both laughed.

“Yeah,” Jill said, “It’s always about the sex.”

“Good sex,” Angela added, putting in a three musketeers hand.

“Great sex,” Jill bragged, slapping her hand on top.

Louella raised an eyebrow again but she placed a graceful hand over Jill’s. “Unforgettable sex,” she said softly, upping the ante.

The three of them looked at me, but my smirk was gone and I suddenly didn’t want to lie. “Not so much,” I said and shrugged, despite the fact that I’d worked my way through all my male staff and half the suppliers of the teahouse. “Although I’m open to new experiences.”

Angela smiled at me, but it was an odd expectant look. “Then I may have just the right man for you. A friend of Tug Dunn…” That was the television interviewer who’d given her a spot on his morning show. “…A British food critic who’s agreed to visit Bohemian next week on his Colonial Kitchens documentary series.”

Jill was smirking as if she already knew, but I was clueless.

“Food critic?” I asked.

Angela smiled and said two words I never wanted to hear in conjunction with Bohemian Brew.

“Max Banks.”


“Max Banks?” I barely got the words out.

Angela was looking at me as if she’d just given me chocolate, and even Jill was smiling, but…Max Banks!

I shook my head. “Why would you...” I shook it again, trying to quiet down my bubbling hysteria. “He’s a bastard. He only ever says bad things about restaurants. That’s what he does. Why would you inflict that—?”

“Hey!” Jill grabbed both my flailing hands. “I’m the one who agreed. Don’t blame Angela, and this isn’t his Worst Restaurants of Europe series. He’s only featuring restaurants he likes. This could be huge.”

“He’ll hate us,” I whined, remembering that stubble-framed sneer and those cold pebble eyes from late night television, imagining him disdaining the contents of my cake cabinet and throwing quiches at my customers. “We have Himalayan alpaca tea cozies and crystal teapot stands for Chrissake. He’ll make us into a quaint joke.”

Angela was frowning in earnest now, and I suddenly realized I was spoiling her wedding day. It took a wrench to turn my rant around, but I managed to stop myself cold, then even produce a weak smile. “Listen to me,” I said. “As if I’d care what anyone thought. And besides, what’s not to like about BoBrew?”

“Exactly,” Jill said, and turned to Angela with a beaming smile of her own, showcasing her glorious tan against those super-white teeth. “It will be amazing for the shop. Thank you so much for organizing it.”

It took Angela a few more seconds to catch up with my belated enthusiasm, but then she gave us a tentative smile back. “So long as you’re sure.”

“One hundred percent,” Jill said for the both of us, then she gave my hand a squeeze when I didn’t respond.

“For sure!” I added a touch too enthusiastically. “I can’t wait to meet him and show him around. I’m sure he’ll love the place.”

“I hate it.” Maxwell Banks turned on his heel in a slow three-sixty swivel to take in every Moroccan lamp, Persian rug and framed Mandala in Bohemian Brew. He was so out of place in his elegant black suit and crisp white shirt, he looked like a time traveler. “Who designed this? A backpacker from Nepal?”

I expected his tiny blonde assistant to snort, but when I flicked a glance at her she had a non-expression on that smooth, boyish face, as if she and her impressive biceps couldn’t care less what happened in my teashop.

I was less serene, breathing in slowly through my nose, keeping my lips tightly pressed together so I couldn’t tell him to Piss off and take his stupid Brit accent and his muscly sidekick in her black singlet and jeans with him.