As my cell phone rings, Tony mumbles that he’s going to grab us a few more beers, and then he disappears into the hallway. I do not recognize the number on the caller ID, but I do know the 215 area code. Philadelphia.
I press the button to answer, and before I can even say hello, a woman on the other end of the line says, “Parker, this is Coach. Mickey wanted me to call personally, so here you go. You’ve got me for all of two minutes and thirteen seconds.”
It takes me a minute to remember the name before I realize it’s Mickey’s girl, Charlotte Coachman. Her voice is so stern and confident, yet she’s exactly what I expected from what I’d heard about her from Mickey and some of her clients. She has made a name for herself in the sports world, and she’s one of the few women who didn’t sleep her way into that position, which is rare in this business.
“Hello to you, too, sweetheart.”
At first, she chuckles, but then her laughter slowly turns into a cackle. “Call me that again, Parker, and watch what happens. Let’s get something straight. I’m not one of your puck bunnies. I have a name. That name is Coach or Charlie, but it sure as hell isn’t sweetheart. You got that?”
This chick is crazy and feisty, and I kind of like it.
“One minute and thirty seconds.” She sounds like she’s chewing glass, the words harsh and painful on the tip of her tongue. “In the interest of saving ourselves the headache, I’ve arranged for my secretary to meet you at the apartment building. Please don’t look at her, smile in her direction, or flirt with her because I’m sick of replacing secretaries. I did you a solid with the Philly deal, so I’d appreciate you doing the same and keeping your hands to yourself.”
She went from intriguing to working my last nerve in a matter of seconds.
“Give me some credit at least. You make me out to be a total creep.”
“That’s not entirely off base, Parker. You seem to have a problem with keeping your pants on—or is it finding them?”
I can hear her covering the phone and chuckling to herself before she returns to being a mega bitch.
Damn those stupid YouTube videos.
What is her problem?
She’s so uptight, she might snap in half.
“Like I was saying, Kayla will meet you at the building with the keys. If you need food, clothes, whatever, just let her know, and she will have it delivered. I put my ass on the line for you. Please make sure you’re at practice on time.”
“Sure thing, boss lady. Anything else?”
She sighs loudly into the receiver. “No. My cab is here, and I have to hang up. Mickey said you had the address and Kayla’s contact info. Just call her when you arrive. That’s all.”
I’m about to speak when I realize she already hung up on me and without even saying good-bye. I guess she sucks with them as much as I do.
Every second of our phone call replays in my mind as I try to wrap my head around what the hell just happened. It’s not hard to see why Charlotte is Mickey’s favorite agent and close friend. She’s the female version of him.