“And you?” Joel’s gaze turned to Miriam. “Do you own a shop in town?”
“Not me, I’m a lowly English teacher.” She took another gulp of beer.
He locked gazes with her. “I always had a crush on my teachers. I like smart women.” Yeah, right. Every kid fell for their first grade teachers. Not that many were enamored of the high school teacher from Hell. Miriam glanced at Joel’s left hand. No ring. But some men didn’t wear their wedding bands.
He caught her looking and smiled. “You’re single, too?”
“Yup, the town’s official old maid school marm.”
“For a school marm, you seem to really like beer.”
He had her there. “I’m not classy enough for wine. More of a broad, if you know what I mean.”
“Do you like sports?”
She wrinkled her nose. For her, the two didn’t necessarily go together. “I’d rather watch Pride and Prejudice.”
“I can do that, too.”
Was he hitting on her? How desperate was this man? He was pleasant enough to look at, five-ten with limp, sandy-brown hair and gray eyes. Not a hottie like Tyne or Chase. Just nice. He had a little belly on him, not the rock hard abs they had. Miriam liked bellies—a soft pillow to rest your head on.
Miriam raised her eyebrow—her school teacher intimidation tactic. “Be warned, Daphne’s new friend. I have an acid tongue.”
“And a great laugh. They balance each other, don’t you think?”
What was with this guy? He hardly knew her. He must not have gotten laid for a long time and was looking for a quick thrill. That was fine with her. He was nothing special, but then, neither was she.
She’d never been good at coy, so she decided to be direct. “I’m too busy for any distractions until school’s out. I’m going to be buried in term papers.”
“Works for me. I’m a patient man.” He drained his glass and gave her a wink. “I’m setting up my brewery. I’ll be busy, too, but whenever you want me to make time for you, let me know.” He put money on the bar and nodded at the others. “Nice meeting all of you.”
Miriam stared as he walked out the door. Then, she asked, “Do you think he’s for real?”
Tyne and Chase grinned in unison. Tyne’s brown eyes glittered with amusement. “I think you’ve got yourself a contender, drill sergeant.”