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“Nothing to cover you,” Hailey said. “Most people don’t want the legal battle or even to attempt one. More so against me. If you decided to not buy it and Stan and Louisa sold it, the next person was going to come in and make changes anyway. Not to mention, your contract is with Stan and Louisa, not another owner. They could easily give the business to Hadley and she could continue as is and I’m not so sure there is anything you can do other than make something long and drawn out. I don’t think you’re that type of person.”

“No,” he said. Not even if he wasn’t dating Hadley.

“It sounds to me that Hadley should get some of the credit for the way things are turning around there,” Hailey said, grinning at him.

“She does have a hand in it,” he agreed.

“Do you need a manager there? You are spread very thin as it is. She asked if you thought she could run the place and the question is, can she?”

“I don’t think she has enough experience to run it in terms of the kitchen. She has no background there. She’d have to make sure she had good chefs doing that more than anything.”

“If you take the kitchen part out of it, then what?”

“The kitchen and the food are what keeps a restaurant going,” he said.

“Which you are doing or training your people to do. They follow your lead. Seems as if your girlfriend followed your lead too and that is how we ended up having this meeting.”

He wasn’t surprised Hailey would mention that. “I can’t dispute that.”

“So back to my question. Take the kitchen out of it. Would it help you to have someone manage Southside so that you aren’t doing it? The scheduling and training of servers and bartenders. Things like that? Doing some of the ordering?”

“Yes, it would be beneficial for me,” he said.

He’d thought of that all day yesterday too. Funny how he hadn’t thought of it at all. Maybe because he was still in the trial phase of all of this.

“Then I think you know your answer,” Hailey said. “Are you going to send me home with that box over there?”

He laughed. There was a takeout box of Duke’s on the other counter. He moved and brought it over. “Two slices of chocolate cake from last night. Two fruit tarts too. I didn’t make the tarts, but I think Rex likes having fruit.”

“He likes dark chocolate too. It’s his weak spot and I’ll gladly share with him and be the hero,” Hailey said.


“Don’t thank me,” Hailey said. “I’m just doing my job. I’m here if you need anything. Legal or otherwise.”

His cousin left shortly after and he knew what he had to do. He texted Hadley and asked if they could talk. Since she was working he didn’t expect to hear from her right away.

He grabbed his keys and decided to go see his sister. He had some questions about the financial statements anyway. Since he was stopping in last minute, he grabbed the other piece of cake he had in a box for her.

“Yum,” Kelsey said. “Hand it over before you sit down.”

“You don’t even know what’s in it,” he said, placing it on her desk.

“Please,” Kelsey said. “I’m your twin. It’s chocolate cake.” She opened a drawer and pulled out a fork, then opened the box and started to eat.

“Do you have time to go over some questions on the report you sent the other day?”

“I always have time for you. Luckily I don’t have a call or anything planned, but I would have rescheduled it if I did.”

“I’d never ask you to do that.”

“What are your questions? Duke’s or Southside?”

“Southside. Duke’s is doing great,” he said.

“So is Southside. You are up about eighty percent from this time last year.”

“I saw that,” he said. He shouldn’t have been shocked, but he was. “Was it mismanagement on their part?”

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