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I impatiently waited for my escape from work. I needed to vent to my friend. Chelsey was a good listener. Luckily, five o’clock rolled around before I knew it. I said good-bye to Dira and made it to Casey Prime in five minutes flat. Chelsey was waiting for me at a table next to the bar.
Casey Prime was a great steakhouse. They also had a good appetizer menu and great discounts in their bar room on weekdays between five and seven. Five to seven would be just enough time to adjust my attitude.
“I need a drink. And fast!” I hung my purse on the back of the chair and plopped down in my seat.
“Well, hello to you too.”
The bartender came over to our table and took my order. “A cosmo, please. Actually, make it two.”
“Two drinks at once?” Chelsey raised an eyebrow.
“You don’t know what I’ve been going through.”
“Well, I’m here. Talk to me.”
“My new neighbors. The husband is a senator. The wife is a recent escapee from an insane asylum.”
“For real?” Chelsey’s eyebrow was raised again.
“The senator part is.”
The bartender returned with my cosmos. I downed the first one and handed him back the glass. “Were you interested in seeing a menu?” he asked.
I didn’t need to look at the menu. I ordered the same thing every time I went to Casey Prime. “I’ll have the shrimp cocktail, sirloin crostini, and the truffle fries.”
“I’ll have the filet sliders and the Casey fries,” Chelsey said.
The bartender headed to the computer and keyed in our order.
Chelsey took a sip of her gin and tonic. “So, tell me the rest.”
“Lemon Face called my boss today.”
“Lemon Face? Is that the wife? Why do you call her that?”
“Because she has a face that always looks like she just sucked on a lemon.”
Chelsey laughed and spit out some of her drink in the process.
“Anyway, she called my boss and said that I was rude and disrespectful.”
“So, what does that have to do with your work? You don’t live in the town where you work.”
“She pretended to be a resident.”
“How do you know it was her?”
“I don’t; it’s a feeling I got. She’s been messing with me. Called the cops, saying the boat was three inches too close to the property line. Left me a bag of poop lit on fire at my front door, and called me at work, threatening me.”
“What? She called you at work too, not only your boss?”
“C’mon, Chelsey. Keep up with me.” I downed my second drink. I held up the glass for the bartender to see, and he nodded, knowing I wanted another.
I told the whole story to Chelsey in detail after I had calmed my nerves with my second drink. Chelsey’s advice was to find a way to have some common ground with Lyla. She reminded me that life could be miserable having a neighbor battle.
“How would you know? Have you ever had a rotten neighbor?”
“Once. They would let their dog run all over the neighborhood. They would get mad at me for calling animal control. I was afraid the dog would get hit by a car. One night, I heard a lot of screaming, and I almost called the police.”
“Why didn’t you?”
“I figured I’d let them kill each other. Then I wouldn’t have the dog issue any longer.”
“Real nice, Chelsey. And I thought, between the two of us, that you were the nice one.”