"I think so. So what have you been up to? Making more people's dream weddings happen?"
I let out a defeated sigh.
"Oh no. What did I say?"
"Nothing. You didn't say anything. Just found myself in a bit of a situation at work is all."
Brandon flashed a sympathetic smile.
"I know i'm practically a stranger, but, do you want to talk about it?"
"Everyone keeps asking me that. Well, not everyone. Mostly it's just Micah."
A surprised laugh burst out of me.
"No. Micah is most definitely not my boyfriend."
"He's my best friend. We grew up together. He's like that annoying little brother you never wanted but ended up with anyways. Love him to death but he can be a bit of a nag."
"Do you think he might keep asking because you do need to talk about whatever it is?"
I chewed on my bottom lip as I mulled over what he'd said. Maybe I did need to talk about it. Bottling it up was just stressing me out more.
"Okay. But I hope you don't have anywhere to be."
Brandon raised his eyebrows in surprise.
"I thought you'd be stubborn about it. You seem like the stubborn type."
"I am but you're easy to talk to. Makes me want to be a little less stubborn."
"I'll take that as a compliment."
"Alright. No more stalling.Spill it."
"I have a new manager."
"And she has no idea what she's doing and she's chasing off my clientele. I've been cleaning up her messes all week. She likes to take over at the last minute and then she nearly destroys everything."
"Have you tried bringing it up to her?"
"Yes. I've offered her help. I've tried to tell her nicely that she's lost me clients. I've tried being straightforward with her. She just doesn't seem to get it."
"Did you talk to her boss?"
"I take it that didn't go very well."
"She's held a grudge against me since she found out her husband and I dated in college briefly."
"Yup. Not much to be done about it except try to make the best of it I guess. It's just so infuriating having all of my hard work thrown down the drain because she thinks she's great at her job. The job never should have been hers in the first place. I'm just lucky most of my clients realize that I'm not the one causing the damage to their perfect day."
Brandon reached over and squeezed my hand reassuringly.
"Is there a reason you stay?"
"I love my job and seeing faces like your sister's light up on their day makes it all worth it."
"Sounds like you're in it for the right reasons."
"I'd like to think so."
"Have you ever thought about branching out on your own?"
"I couldn't do that."
"I...I don't know."
"I think you'd be great and you'd have complete control."
"Where would I get the funding for an office space? How would I advertise? What if my reputation is tarnished because of this job?"
"That's just three things. You can figure it out."
I sat back in my chair and looked at Brandon for a minute.
"I guess I did need to talk about it."
Brandon smiled behind his cup as he took a sip.
"Now, since you've got that sorted out, would you like to have dinner with me sometime?"
"I guess I just...wait what?"
"Dinner. You. Me."
I smiled brightly.
"I'd like that. After all it is the least I could do after chatting your ear off." I teased.
"How about Saturday?"
"Oh, can't. Ice cream date with Micah."
"Friday works for me."
"I'll pick you up at 6?"
"It's a date. Oh! You'll need my number!"
I quickly scribbled my number on a napkin and handed it over to him. He entered the number in his phone and shot me a winky face text.
"So you know it's me." He said with a wink.
He planted a gentle kiss on my cheek and walked away just as Micah was heading back to my table. I couldn't help the smile that lit up my face. Micah's eyed me with a curious look.
"Who was that?"
"I have no idea who that is."
"I coordinated his sister's wedding."
"I have a date!"
"I guess today was a success after all."