Dallas, Texas ~ June 2016
Breanna stared down at the letter in her hands. Reading it again for the 4th time, hoping this time it would make sense to her. She knew her grandfather didn’t own this building, but he had been here for 30 years. And not once did he have any issues with the owner, he was never even late on his payments. Breanna had even made the first payment on her own this month early.
So why was she holding a letter of eviction in her hands? Her mind began to wander to where she would go? She had 30 days to find a new office, and let all her clients know about the move. She sighed, why make her move the clinic after 30 years? She knew this was going to upset her grandpa when she told him about it. She felt pained at the idea of having to tell him.
She picked up her cell phone and dialed the number for the owner of the building. She wanted to know the real reason why she was being kicked out of the building, a month after her grandpa retired. She listened to the line ring, and got more and more irritated as she waited for the man to answer. She didn’t remember ever meeting this Mr. Leonard, but she already didn’t like him.
After 5 rings she heard the line pick up. “Mr. Leonard’s office.” she heard the woman say when she picked up. “Hello. My name is Breanna Simms. I currently rent an office space from Mr. Leonard and was wondering if I could possibly speak with him.” she said in the most calm and professional tone she could muster.
She could hear the lady flipping pages, probably a planner. “I have an appointment available in an hour. Would you like me to pencil you in?” she asked cheerfully. “Yes please. Where are your offices located?” she asked picking up her pen to jot down the address so she could find the place. The woman gave her the address and Breanna ended the call. She didn’t know exactly what she was going to say to him when she got there, but she at least wanted to know why he was taking the clinic away from her.
An hour later Breanna walked into the very clean office of Mr. Leonard, still trying to decide what she was going to say to the man. Still wondering why he would do something like this without even talking to or even meeting her. She stopped in front of the desk with the slim redheaded woman behind it. Watching as her long red acrylic nails tapped against the keyboard.
Breanna waited while she finished typing and smiled as she looked up at her. “I have an appointment to see Mr. Leonard, I’m Breanna Simms.” she said using what she called her doctor voice. The woman pushed a button on the phone to her right and told who ever was on the other end that Dr. Simms was there to see Mr. Leonard. The woman gestured to the row of chairs behind her and asked her to have a seat. Breanna turned around and quietly sat down looking around the room at the pictures, she assumed was property that Mr. Leonard owned.
The longer she sat the more annoyed and angry she got. What was the point of making an appointment to see the man when he was going to keep her waiting. Her appointment time had came and went, leaving her sitting in the waiting area for almost a half hour past her time. Who the hell did this guy think he was any way?
Breanna was about to get up and tell the receptionist she was leaving when a tall blonde walked in and called her name. “Mr. Leonard is ready for you now.” she said gesturing down the long hall to a door. Breanna looked at the tall woman and began to feel out of place. Apparently Mr. Leonard required model attributes to work for him.
She walked down the hall way and waited outside the door for the leggy blonde to open it. She followed her inside looking around the black and white decorated room, with its very expensive furnishings, feeling very put off that the man would make people feel as if he was rubbing his wealth in their face when ever they came in.
She heard the woman, who she assumed was his assistant, speaking to the man behind the desk, and brought her attention back to them. She looked at the man who had his back to her staring out the window. She watched as he silently motioned with his hand and the blonde left the room. Well he had them trained well. Breanna thought as the woman quickly left the room closing the door behind her.
“Thank you for seeing me Mr. Leonard. I wanted to discuss the letter I received in the mail this morning. It says it’s a notice of eviction, but my Grandfather has never been delinquent on his payments.” she started pulling the letter out of her purse and unfolding it as she talked.
Breanna looked up as the man began to speak. “It has nothing to do with payments, Ms. Simms. It all has to do with the a violation of the contract your Grandfather signed. Basically he is subleasing the clinic to you when he retired.” The man said as he turned. Breanna felt the hair stand up on the back of her neck as well as her arms as she heard the mans voice. That voice, she knew that voice.
Breanna stared in horror at the man behind the desk. Preston Scott. The hair was different, and Mr. Leonard had a scar on his left cheek, but this was Preston Scott. She felt the room begin to spin as she stared at him. She felt a warmth come over her, and the over whelming urge to lose the breakfast she had eaten earlier. Breanna grabbed on to the plush chair in front of her to steady herself, trying to breath deep to keep from passing out. What the hell was going on?
“So, I see that you have had the dreams finally. So you know who I am.” Mr. Leonard said with a sick smile on his face. Breanna just stared at him. “So you see Ms. Simms. My legal stance is that your Grandfather violated our agreement. Binding in any court in the state, I might add. Personally, I had no intentions of doing any of this. I remember when I met you back when you were 17.” He said as he sat down in the black executive chair behind he desk and leaned back in it.
“You were so beautiful, very naive but so much like my Abigail.” he said the smile getting bigger. That is when I had remembered what you know now.” he continued as he found it amusing that she was standing there unable to speak. “I wanted to wait until you were older before I met you again, hoped that maybe it was age that would make you remember who you are. So when your Grandfather announced his retirement and that you were his successor, I thought it was the right time to visit the clinic.” Mr. Leonard said his eyes traveling the length of her. Just like Preston did the day when he met Abigail. Breanna felt her whole body go on alert. Apparently nothing had changed.
“Did you even know I visited your clinic a few weeks ago? I doubt you do. I was sitting in the waiting room, waiting to visit with you, hoping you would be open to giving us a shot again, then I saw, him.” Mr. Leonard said dragging him out as if the word had left a bad taste in his mouth.
She only assumed that him, was in reference to Hunter. “You walked out of the back of the clinic hanging all over the cowboy. I don’t know what his name is now, but when he got between us before it was Lucas. I saw how you two looked at each other. That’s when I knew that it wasn’t the age, it was contact.” The older man said sitting forward looking at her.
“Meeting you was what started my memories, yours I’m assuming was meeting him. So that is when I realized that I had waited to long to get you back. He had once again beat me to you. Now I can only do one thing, crush your dreams once more. So I came back to my office and began the paperwork on the eviction.” he said smiling again.
Breanna gripped the back of the chair so hard that her knuckles turned white. “Mr. Leonard.” she started trying to keep calm as she stared at the man that she had grown to hate more than any one she had ever met in her life. “Please, Breanna don’t be so formal. We were married once. Call me James.” he said giving her a sickening smile that worked very well at making her stomach turn.
“James, for one, you and I were never married. Abigail and Preston were, and only because her father only saw her as property to do what he wanted with. And two, no amount of sweet talk would ever have gotten you and I together.” she said wadding the letter into her fist. “Now now Breanna. Don’t be so hasty. There is the issue of your families clinic. I can make it all go away if you just stop seeing the cowboy.” he said pouring a dark amber liquid into a crystal glass and watching it swirl around inside it.
Breanna felt the anger rise inside her. This man had enough nerve to tell her she could keep the office space if she stopped seeing Hunter. “Your just as evil and manipulative as you were back then. I wouldn’t have put it past you having Mr. King’s cattle poisoned, just to create the opportunity to look like a hero.” Breanna said throwing the balled up paper at him, narrowly missing his head. “Keep your damn office space Mr. Leonard. I will find a new home for my clinic. Even if it means using my apartment for now.” she said spinning on her heel and stomping towards the door.
“It’s nice to see you again Abigail. And comforting to see that the spirit that I love so much, is still there. When you tire of the cowboy, you know where to find me.” he said with a sicking laugh. Breanna threw open the door and stalked out of the office, down the hallway past the receptionist and out into the sunshine. Bending over heaping in lung fulls of air trying to keep from vomiting all over the parking lot.
She was grateful to have found Hunter, and the love she shared with Lucas was reborn, but she never imagined that others from her previous life were here as well. She needed to tell Lucas, let him know that Preston was here and he knew about them, again. She called Pauline and let her know she had business to attend to, that if there was an emergency to refer them to Dr. Reynolds on Seminole, but if it wasn’t to have them make an appointment. She climbed into her SUV and headed out of the city towards the one place she had grown comfortable and felt safe, The Flying J.
Hunter walked into the kitchen removing his work gloves and began setting out the chicken to thaw so he could make Breanna his chicken taco’s, it was one of her favorites. He loved when she would come over and spend the night, they would make dinner together, cuddle on the couch and watch an old movie, then hold each other all night. He walked towards the stairs and climbed them two at a time to the upstairs bathroom.
He was getting excited about Breanna coming over, he wanted to ask her if she wanted to move out to the farm with him over dinner. He missed her when she was in town in her small apartment. He smiled the whole time he was in the shower, thinking about Breanna walking around the house in one of his t shirts with her bare legs and her hair all messed up from sleep. He thought the look was so sexy. Better than any of those magazines the other guys talked about.
Hunter toweled off and shaved, before putting on a clean t shirt and jeans, then headed back downstairs. He stopped on the bottom step and looked around. Something was off. He could feel it. Something wasn’t right. He quietly walked barefoot through the dining room. He looked into the kitchen, noticing everything was still the same there. He turned and walked towards the front of the house to the living room.
The feeling got stronger the closer he got. He stopped in the door way and stared in disbelief as he saw the reason for the feeling. Sherry Long was sitting on his couch. His ex fiance Sherry. “What are you doing here Sherry?” he asked leaning against the door frame crossing his arms across his chest. “Come on Hunter, can’t an old friend drop by to visit?” she asked with a shy smile.
“Old friends are welcome any time. You are not what I would call and old friend. You are my ex for a reason Sherry. You cheated on me, with two guys. Two guys that I knew well. So once again what are you doing here?” he asked watching her stand up from the couch and walk towards him, swinging her hips as she went.
“Hunter, that was almost 5 years ago. When are going to let me prove to you that I’ve changed. I realized that I was stupid for letting you go.” she said as she slid her manicured hand up his muscular chest to entwine her arms around his neck.
Hunter felt very uncomfortable. He felt her lean in and take a deep breath. “I see you still wear my favorite aftershave.” she said close to his ear. “I remember how the smell of it would drive me crazy. It still does. How about we sit on the couch and we can talk about old times, see where it takes us.” she said as she pulled him towards the couch.
“Sherry, I have a girlfriend.” Hunter said as she pulled him down onto the couch beside her, climbing on his lap. “Come on Hunter, there is nothing here that makes me believe you have a girlfriend, so you will have to try a little harder with the excuses.” She said with a smile as she began to press light kisses to his neck. “Well it’s because we just started dating and she doesn’t live here.” he said pulling away from her.
“So it’s not that serious then.” Sherry said as she began to unbutton her shirt. “Now why would you say that?” he asked looking at her. “Because I know you Hunter James. If it was serious, she would be living here with you and you would have already proposed to her. Hell we dated for 3 weeks before I moved in, and you proposed to me after 2 months.” she said pulling open her top, giving him a really nice look at one of the items on page 23 of the Victoria Secret catalog.
Sherry smiled as he looked from her chest to her face, still not understanding what the hell she was trying to do here. When all of the sudden she kissed him hard on the lips. No love, no passion and no feelings what so ever on his part. It was like kissing a stranger, though he would admit he would love to see Breanna in the bra she had on, but that was it.
Hunter reached up and grabbed Sherry by the arms, intending to pull her off of him, when he heard something crash to the floor from the kitchen. Sherry jumped back and they both turned their heads to look at the doorway leading to the kitchen.
Hunter felt his entire world fall apart as he saw the look on Breanna’s face as she stood there staring at them in shock, tears already running down her cheeks.
Hunter tried desperately to push Sherry off his lap as he watched in terror as Breanna turned and ran out the back door of the house. “Damn it Sherry. Why? I told you I had a girlfriend, why couldn’t you just leave it alone? It is serious, and just to set the record straight, I was going to ask her to move in tonight, I learned from you not to jump the gun on that one. I think you know your way out, I have to go hopefully salvage what is left of the best thing to happen to me.” he said as he watched with satisfaction as Sherry stared at him in shock as she fell in the floor as he stood up.
Hunter pulled on his boots and quickly ran to the back door. He looked around and noticed Breanna’s Jeep was still in the driveway, so that meant she was here some where. He looked left and right and then instinct told him she was in the barn. That would be where Abigail would go. He ran across the yard to the barn door and pulled the heavy wood door open, trying to adjust his vision to see in the dim barn, but didn’t see her inside. Maybe he was wrong, maybe she was someplace else.
Then he heard a noise from the loft, and he smiled. He should have known she would go there, it was like old times, when Abigail would get upset she would go to her safe place, their blanket in the loft. Hunter walked to the ladder and climbed it and prayed as he did that he could convince Breanna that none of what she saw was what she thought it was.