THE RIVERVIEW NIGHTCLUB
have another Manhattan on the rocks," Fred said as he motioned to the
bartender. As the fresh drink was placed in front of him, he strummed his
fingers nervously on the bar. He glanced down at his watch and
grimaced. "She's late," he muttered, "as usual."
He let out a heavy sigh as he prayed that everything went just as he'd intended.
"Well, hello, Dr.
Rutherford. Fancy meeting you here."
"It's about time,"
he turned toward the direction of the female voice. "Annabelle, I've
been waiting for you for almost an hour."
sorry. I got caught up in other things." Annabelle took a seat
next to him on a bar stool and indicated to the bartender that she wanted a
vodka tonic. "And how are things with you?"
"Actually, they're going
quite well." Fred allowed a grin to spread across his face as he
casually sipped his drink. He paused for a moment before speaking
again. "I've made a date with one Francis
Callison. I believe
I'll be taking her to dinner. The Gardens sounds nice."
"Wonderful! That's so
good to hear." Annabelle smiled as she gave his hand a congratulatory
pat. "It's about time you came through on your end of the
"I told you I was working
on it!" Fred snapped as he glared at her with irritation.
"Francis is not exactly the easiest woman in town, you know. She's
still quite hung up on that loser husband of hers."
"Charles Callison is far
from a loser!" She gritted her teeth at Fred's comments.
"In fact, to me Charles is the grand prize I've been trying to win for
quite some time now. I could lose everything I've worked for if you can't
keep her away from him."
"Annabelle, I think you
need to be the one keeping Charles away from her."
"You let me worry about
that. You just handle the not-so-happy homemaker." She took a
big swig of her drink. "And you better be sure you keep your trap
shut about your part in my seduction of Charles during Reginald and
engagement party. He has to believe his betrayal of her was all his own
doing. He can know nothing of my true involvement in it."
"Oh, don't you
worry." Fred grinned slightly as his mind worked out his own
plans. "I have my own designs for Mrs. Callison."
"And what is that
supposed to mean?" Annabelle looked at him closely. She'd never
been entirely sure she could trust him. However, he was her best shot at
an ally and she couldn't risk blowing her chances.
"Let's just say that I
need Francis just as much as you need Charles." He took another
drink. "But for very, very different reasons."