I stepped out of the shower and wrapped a towel around me, using my free hand to pinch the bridge of my nose. I could hear music filtering through the apartment and groaned at the thought of socializing tonight. I felt like shit from drinking my blues away last night and just wanted to sleep a few hours before work tomorrow.
I dried off slowly and pulled on some lounge pants. I knew that my sister was getting ready in the hallway bathroom and that she was the one singing along to the music in her loud voice. Molly moved out and I wouldn’t hear her voice anymore. Not only that, she did it while I was away on business.
I stepped into my bedroom and walked into the hallway to see lights shining in from two of the rooms. She was singing a Kelly Clarkson song badly, and I shook my head slowly.
“Are you sure you need me tonight? Call one of the pretty boys you insist on dating.” I told her, walking to the bathroom where she was wrapped in a robe and leaning into the mirror so far, I wanted to pull her away. Judging from her intense expression, she was in the middle of something important.
“Mom wants us to go, B. This is one of her most important clients and she needs family to represent.” She turned unblinking blue eyes towards me and I sighed.
My mother was an agent to several celebrities in the New York area and happened to catch the flu two days before this showing. She always begged me and Moira to take her place when that happened though it was rare. It was probably the reason I felt a bit out of place at these things since I was used to talking numbers and investing. The creative types didn’t want to hear about that as much as I’d like. They were usually starting out with stars in their eyes. I admired that, but I just wanted to help them secure their futures.
“Why tonight? I feel like shit from last night.” I grumbled as she rolled her eyes.
“It’s not my fault that you went out drinking after a long day at work. Is it punishment when you go in early the day after that?” She mused as I stared at her. “I have plans later, anyway. We’ll just make an appearance and you can come home and roll in your own pity.” She turned to the mirror. “Go fix your ugly face and get dressed. Martin is picking us up in an hour. Drink some Vitamin water while you do that, and you might feel better.”
“Fucking hell, Moira.” I grumbled as I stumbled to the kitchen and grabbed two of the cold bottles from the fridge. She might be five years younger than me, but she had a good head on her shoulders. I felt like she was the older sibling most of the time.
I added some product to my hair and styled it in the messy way that women seemed to favor. I chuckled at Moira’s comment about being ugly since we both knew that I could get any woman I wanted in the city. Molly was a rare relationship for me and one that I believed in. I shared the same dark brown hair and bright green eyes with my sister and we both did well out there.
I looked into the mirror and made sure my hair was perfect before rubbing the stubble on my face. I decided to leave it and walked into the bedroom to get my go to tuxedo from the closet. I hated wearing them, but business was business.
I straightened the tie that matched my eyes before taking the last sip from the second bottle. It did make me feel a bit more stable, and I found my shoes, slipping them over the expensive socks I favored for these occasions. I heard the click of heels outside the bedroom door and moved to stand as Moira tapped on the thick wood.
“Ready to dazzle?” She called as I slipped what I needed into my pockets and headed over to leave.
“Aren’t the artists supposed to do that?” I asked dryly as I looked down at her. I was three inches taller than my sister even in her stilettos and she raised a brow at me. “You look nice.”
“Thank you.” She said as she ran a hand down her ombre purple dress that she paired with glittering silver heels. Moira was the more bohemian of the two of us and it made me smile. “I think that Martin is waiting for us. Ready?”
“Let’s do it.” She downed the glass of wine and clutched her small purse as we headed to the front door. This was my brownstone though she stayed here a lot if she didn’t want to make the drive to my parent’s place across town. I pulled the door closed and secured it with the app on my phone before leading her to the elevator.
The town car was shimmering under the street lights as Martin opened the door for us. I nodded at him as Moira slipped into the car first, taking my seat beside her as I looked at the group of women ogling me as they passed. I was all about casual now after Molly. I started last night with some nameless blonde in one of the storage closets.
The car moved smoothly into the street and I stared out of the window as the buildings flashed by. I felt like I could pull a few hours of mindless socializing with a winning smile. My mom was known as a caring, devoted agent and I kept that in mind as I promoted her and our family name. Moira was busy on her phone and I smiled at her as I watched.
Growing up, I was always protective of my only sibling. I was the typical big brother, but she showed that she could hold her own early on. Now, I was watching her work as an assistant to a successful attorney and make her way in the city with confidence and a generous dose of sass.
I looked out of the window and worried about my sick mom. I knew that Dad was taking care of her and she’d be back at life soon, but I always looked to her as the strong one in our family. If Dad wasn’t doing well as the owner of a successful property management company, I would take care of her and Moira myself.
“We’re here. I love that little coffee shop on the corner!” Moira’s words broke into my thoughts and I looked out as the car slid to a stop across the street from a building crowded with people inside and out. It was in Brooklyn and I quietly admired the vibrant feel of this part of town.
Martin opened the door, and I stepped out, taking Moira’s arm as we looked back and forth before crossing the street. Once the crowd parted, I could see the building was a smaller one that stood out on the block. The front was all windows and I could see that the lighting was intimate but perfect for the art showing inside. Moira greeted someone as we walked through the wide glass doors that were propped open, letting in the cool evening air.
I spoke to friends of the family that were there, discussing upcoming events and holiday parties that we’d see each other at. They all seemed to be fond of the artist and spoke highly about her as I looked around to see who this woman was.
Once I was finished with my last conversation, I made my way to the small bar to order a beer. I wasn’t going to drink heavily tonight, but I needed to relax for a bit and get through this evening. I thanked the young woman and tipped her with a random bill from my pocket as she smiled sweetly at me. She was a redhead and might be good for later if I didn’t go home and sleep.