Word Count: 579
Renee’s parents arrival woke him up a second time mid afternoon.
Colton could hear the three of them laughing in the living room. He got up and took a another shower before going to face all that energy and enthusiasm for living.
“Colton!” Renee exclaimed as he walked in. “Great news!”
“What?” he asked.
“That detective guy; Moreno? Anyway he called and said they are going to question me and lift the house arrest order!”
“Tomorrow! Down at their office or headquarters or whatever you call it here.” Renee hugged her mother. “Yay! I can finally go out and do something! Not that I’ve been bored, sweetheart.” She added with a smile and a wink.
“Ooh, look at him blush!” Mrs. White crowed. They all laughed and Colton grudgingly joined in.
Mr. White sucked him into a conversation about what exactly his company did. Colton was more than willing to keep him talking about business and not about his and Renee’s relationship. The man had a gleam in his eye that Colton didn’t like.
Renee’s phone rang and she checked the screen. She looked up and met his eyes, her smile fixed. He glared at her, daring her to disobey him. She silenced it and set it back down.
Colton blinked, jerking his attention back to his wife’s father.
“Sorry, Jake, “ he said. “What was your question?”
The man was smiling now and Colton fought down another blush. He hadn’t been staring at her. Just looking, while she laughed and talked with her mother. What did they find to talk about for hours on end? Her phone rang again.
She looked at it, no pretend smile on her face now.
“Renee?” he mother asked gently.
“Its nothing,” Renee said. She leaned over and held it out to Colton.
He took it and answered.
“Where is Renee?”
“This is the last time I’m telling you. Stop calling.”
Colton hung up and fished through her settings. He set Stephen’s number to not ring and handed it back.
Her parents were watching them with surprise. Renee put it on the table next to her and turned back to her mother.
“So, you said Betty lost her job?”
Jake White was eying him closely. Colton stared back.
“Did you know that Stephen guy?” Colton asked finally.
“I did.” Jake admitted. “He and Renee went to high school together.”
“Did you like him?”
Jake shrugged. “As much as I liked any of her boyfriends.”
Colton snorted. “Anyway, I made that deal with Toyota last summer.”
The conversation stayed out of dangerous waters until Rosa came in to announce dinner. Colton grabbed Renee’s hand to hold her back. She waited, her back stiff and straight.
“Are you alright?” Colton asked softly.
“Fine.” Renee clipped.
“Renee,” Colton protested. “What happened between you?”
“Just what I said.”
“How long has this been going on?”
Renee shrugged. “A couple months.”
“Months?” Colton demanded. He grabbed her shoulders and turned her to face him. “Why?”
“I tried to be friends. I did still like him. Just not…like I might want to marry him.”
Colton scowled. “No more. He’s getting to be creepy. Understand? No more calls. At all.”
Her eyes narrowed and he tensed. Then she laughed softly.
“I did tell you to have more backbone,” she said softly.
Colton swore and pushed her away. “Go eat.” He snapped.
“Yes, dear.” She murmured, eyes twinkling. She slipped away, leaving him alone and very frustrated.