Duke's Redemption

Page 4

My mind has done this back-and-forth tennis match so much all day long that I think I’m getting whiplash.
I use the towel next to me to dry off my hands before grabbing my phone. Earlier, I made a pros and cons list that I thought may help me decide what I want to do.
“Let’s start with the cons,” I mutter out loud, as though someone can actually hear me.
Texas. Enough said. I know absolutely nothing about Texas, nor do I think I would fit in even a little bit. Hats hurt my head, so a cowboy hat is out of the question, and flannel makes me itchy. Plus, you know, it’s all the way across the country.
Restorations. Not only do I know nothing about any type of house projects, but I have to go to Texas to supervise said projects. Nothing about it is exactly convenient.
Work. I don’t know how much of a con this one actually is. When the entire country was basically shut down, I was able to do my job from home without any issues. Theoretically, I could do it again. I need to talk to my staff, though, to make sure they could handle everything in my absence.
You have principles. Do I really want to be associated with anything that my father has touched? The man walked out when I was a baby, and my mother never got over it. Why does he want to make up for his sins now? And do I really want to let him?
This is insane. I think that one is self-explanatory.
Alright, let’s take a look at the pros.
Money. I make a decent living, but any extra income I have, I pour back into my business. It would be nice to have a little extra cushion in my bank account in case of emergencies.
No one to miss me. Okay, I could have worded that one a little differently, but the sentiment is true. I have no family left alive. All I ever had was my mom, and even before she died, we were never close. Her alcoholism kept me at arm’s length. And I don’t have any close friends.
Or a boyfriend.
Just thinking about that last part makes me laugh out loud. I’ve basically given up on dating. I got tired of men treating me like shit. Just because I don’t look like a supermodel, they think that I owe them something for sleeping with me.
Stop thinking about your awful track record with men and get back on topic.
Father? Although I don’t necessarily want anything to do with my dad, a little more information about him might be insightful. My mother refused ever to talk about him, so I know nothing about that side of my family. Maybe this trip would answer a few questions.
I stare at my lists for I don’t know how long. The more wine I have, the more this whole thing starts to seem more like a good idea. Maybe it’s just the alcohol talking, but I’m actually considering doing it.
It’s only for a couple of months, right?
How much could my life really change in a couple of months?
The following morning, my wine has worn off, but I still think I’m going to pull the trigger on the house thing. I’m not exactly sure why, but something tells me that it’s the right thing to do.
It’s probably that little voice inside that really likes money.
Whatever the reason may be, I’m doing it. But when Mr. Abernathy gets here, I have a few conditions of my own.
At nine o’clock on the dot, Danielle comes into my office to confirm the lawyer’s arrival.
He enters a moment later. “Ms. Mathis, it’s lovely to see you again.”
“Likewise, Mr. Abernathy.” I gesture for him to have a seat.
“Well, I’m eager to hear what you’ve decided.”
“I’ve decided to take possession of the house.”
He flashes an unexpected smile. “That’s wonderful!”
“But I need us to be on the same page about a few things.”
He leans back in the chair. “I’m listening.”
“For starters, I’m going to need a full copy of the will for my records. Plus, I want to make sure that there aren’t any other little caveats.”