As much as the man irritates me, I can’t deny he’s a good brother. He practically raised his siblings after their parents passed when he was in his late teens. He must have done something right as three of his four sisters followed him to Colorado when he took over the CEO position here at Clean Mountain Environment.
I don’t want Gabrielle to think her brother is an asshole no matter how much I wish I could strangle him at times. “He’s not unkind.”
Cassandra bursts out laughing. “No, he’s grumpy and annoying.”
I can’t disagree with her assessment. Usually, I prefer not to use the word grumpy as it’s too colloquial and ambiguous, but, in this case, it fits. Beckett is a grump.
Bang! Bang! Bang!
“Are you having a convention in there?” Beckett asks.
“Yep!” Cassandra exclaims. “We’re having a convention about women’s hygiene products. Which do you prefer – pads or tampons?”
Gabrielle blushes and drops her chin to her chest until her hair covers her face.
“You can’t scare me away with talk of tampons. Do you not remember who went to the store to buy your feminine hygiene products when you were teenagers?”
“He bought everything in the female hygiene aisle,” Elizabeth fills me in. “We had boxes and boxes of pads in our bathroom. I used them to stuff my bra.” Her eyes widen when she realizes what she said, and she slaps a hand over her mouth.
Cassandra elbows her. “Amateur. I took boxes of tampons with me to school and used them to make candles in shop class.”
“How do you make candles from tampons?” I ask.
“You dip them in hot wax and light them on fire.”
“And then she threw them in the boy’s locker room,” Elizabeth says.
“You remind me of my sister, Ashlyn,” I tell her.
Elizabeth smirks. “Ashlyn must be awesome.”
She is, but I have no intention of ever admitting to my sister what I think of her. My baby sister does not need anyone encouraging her. Encouraging her only leads to more outrageous behavior.
“You told me you weren’t responsible for starting the fire in the boy’s room,” Beckett says as he bursts into the restroom. I guess he became tired of waiting in the hallway for us.
Cassandra winks at him. “Technically, I didn’t start the fire. The boys started the fire when they threw the tampons into the garbage can before they extinguished the flames.”
“You girls give me gray hair,” he mumbles.
“What gray hair? You’re as handsome as you’ve always been. Don’t you agree, Lilac?”
I glare at Cassandra. I hate to lie. I believe in telling the truth at all times. Lies and false information are bad. And I do mean bad in the worst way imaginable. Spreading false information can literally start wars and has in the past.
I settle for evasion. A tactic I’m loathe to employ. It’s nearly as bad as misinformation.
“Beckett is my boss. I believe it’s inappropriate to discuss the attractiveness of your boss in the workplace.”
Beckett smirks. “As inappropriate as it is to discuss tampons in the ladies’ room?”
I know he’s referring to Cassandra’s fire incident, but I can pretend better than my sisters give me credit for. “I believe the ladies’ room is exactly the place women should discuss tampons.”
“You shouldn’t be in here,” Gabrielle says.
“Why not?” Beckett asks.
Her gaze drops to the floor. “Women should feel comfortable in here.”
Beckett’s brow knits as he studies his sister. “I’ll go. I don’t want anyone to feel uncomfortable.”