I met with Joey Vernon, my heroine from Hands On Training, right here in my own backyard at a local favorite, Five Guys. It was supposed to be an interview with her, but you will see that it didn’t end up that way.

Joey is movie star gorgeous. Almost six feet tall, long curling blonde hair and one of those types of faces that never takes a bad picture. Over some of the best burgers ever, fries and sodas, we chatted about her men and her life.

MEL: Joey, thanks for meeting me. I take it you are in town for a vacation.

JOEY: In a way. Grant came into town for his father’s sixty-fifth birthday.

MEL: Right. Grant is former Senator Benson’s son. Will you be attending?

JOEY: Lord, no. I do not even want to think what would happen if Heath and I showed up there. But, I have never been to DC so the guys thought we should come for the week.

MEL: Does it bother you that Grant’s family won’t accept your relationship?

JOEY: No, not really. they are not truly that close, but Grant’s mother really wanted him here, and he could not bring himself to say no to her. And, I don’t begrudge him that.

MEL: Do you have any other problems with your families?

She smiles and I hear something clatter behind me. I glance back over my shoulder to find a young man who ran into a chair while apparently staring at her. He flushes and hurries away.

JOEY: No. My parents are both gone. The only relationship I have with my extended family is through business. Heath’s family has been wonderful. Heath and Liam, his brother, are super close, so I am happy that they don’t have a problem with it. It would be doubly hard since they own a company together. His parents have completely accepted our relationship as it is. I have only been told by his mother she wants some grandbabies, and soon. Marlow and Liam are expecting their first, but apparently that is not enough for her.

MEL: So, is that something you want soon?

JOEY: No, not really. I do want children, but I just took over my family business. It is stressful and with our relationship being so new, I want to wait. I want to spend time with my guys all by myself.

The moment she says that, the doors woosh open and I watch as both of her lovers walk in. Heath is a big man, built like a linebacker, brown hair, deep hazel eyes. He is easily 6’4″ -6’5″. He makes me think of his namesake Heathcliff. Very brooding, and definitely dangerous.  His companion isn’t as brooding, but he is definitely dangerous…especially to a woman’s libido. As tall as Heath, Grand is leaner, like a swimmer, with dark blonde hair and a goatee. You can see the humor in his blue eyes.

As they stride through the restaurant, they definitely gain attention. Seeing just one of them would attract stares, but both of them walking side by side definitely draws the female eye.

JOEY: without turning around.  Let me guess. They just showed up.

MEL: I laugh. Yeah, they did.

 She shoots them an evil look over her shoulder but they ignore her as they take the two empty chairs at the table. Heath eases into the chair on her right and Grant turns the second chair around and straddles it. The smile he offers her is filled with sensuality but apparently, she is not ready to be nice. She frowns at them and crosses her arms beneath her breasts.

JOEY: This is my interview. What are you two doing here?

HEATH: We got done with what we were supposed to do.

JOEY: What you were supposed to do is leave me alone.

GRANT: Yeah. We’re done with that.

She rolls her eyes. Grabbing her drink she stands and leaves me alone with them while she gets more to drink.

MEL: Have you all eaten?

Heath smiles.

HEATH: No, we haven’t. Hey, Grant, why not get me a regular hamburger, jalapenos, cheddar cheese and onions.

Grant scowls, but still gets up to order. But Heath’s eyes narrow over my shoulder and I glance back to see Grant has slipped his arm around Joey pulling her back against him as he whispers in her ear. I can hear her giggle over the din of customers. With a quick kiss, she pushes him away and heads back to the table. She is flushed and smiling.

HEATH: What was that about?

JOEY: Tell ya later. So, Melissa, do  you have any other questions?

MEL: You two work together. How do you handle that?

Joey chuckles.

HEATH: It isn’t that easy all the time. Joey has a mouth on her–

JOEY: Hey!

HEATH: You know you do, darlin’. He leans over and gives her a quick kiss. One of the things I love about you. Turns back to me. But it is a balancing act. We have agreed that any work related discussions remain at the office though. No need to rehash the day at home.

Grant rejoins us with two drinks, giving one to Heath then settling back into his chair.

MEL: You run your own restaurant and you are considered an upcoming star chef in Texas.

Grant snorts.

GRANT: Up and coming. I’m already there, hun.

I laugh.

MEL: But, with your hours, it must be hard to gain some time together. I take it you are open late.

He nods.

GRANT: When I first opened the restaurant in Dallas, it was hard. I had to work a lot of hours to get it going, but I’ve been able to ease back and let other people take over. I want to open a few more.

MEL: Same type of restaurant, Tex Mex fusion? Where at?

GRANT: Yeah. I was scouting locations here, but not sure I am ready to pay the price. And I think I want to keep it in Texas. If I branch out to other areas, I want to really change the menu around. Fit the area’s cuisine. I’ll probably open one in Ft Worth, and then maybe one in San Antonio or Houston. I prefer San Antonio if I can get it on the Riverwalk.

MEL: I was talking to Joey about family, and she mentioned that Heath’s mom wants some grandbabies. How are you all with that? Will you know who will be the father?

GRANT: I would be happy to have babies right now. But, as Joey and Heath have pointed out, we are really just in our first year together. Throwing a baby into the mix would be great but might add undue stress. I don’t think any of us care who the father is. As long as the baby is healthy, we are all happy.

Number 443 is called over the speaker.

GRANT: Your turn.

HEATH mumbles something under his breath but goes to retrieve their food.  He returns with it and both men don’t hesitate to dig in.

MEL: Not your usual fare.

Heath smiles and my pulse scrambles. Damn, the man is dangerous.

GRANT: No. But there is something to be said about peanut fries and a good hamburger. Not a lot of places can make them like this anymore.

HEATH: Damn right they don’t. We’ve been wanting to try Five Guys since Joey mentioned she’d stopped by one in San Antonio last year.

MEL: So, what are your plans for the next year?

GRANT: I am working on a cookbook. It’s already contracted, and has a due date, so I need to get that done. We are also looking for a place to live half way in between our jobs.

HEATH: Joey and I have a few things on the docket at work. And, well, she just took over for Vernon Industries, so that is taking a bit of her time.

She snorts.

JOEY: I am making Heath handle most of that and he has been really sweet about it. The house is the first thing. We need a bigger place and Grant’s. I like it, but it is out of the way.

MEL: Well, thanks a lot for taking the time to talk to me.

Joey smiles.

JOEY: Anytime.

I grab my root beer and head out the door, but I hear a giggle and look back over my should. Grant scooted closer to her and is now nuzzling her neck. Heath is watching them with a smile on his lips. It is easy to see the desire and love in his eyes. With a sigh of envy, I head out the door and back to my writing dungeon.

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