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I always feel awkward at the Hennessey’s annual family Christmas get-togethers—maybe because I’m just the sister of a brother-in-law. I don’t have any family except for him, so I get to be the tag-a-long. But I guess this year my awkwardness isn’t quite so unwarranted, when you consider that the revoltingly handsome eldest son has his hand on my thigh, under the table.
I try to act cool. I’ve never had a hand on my thigh, under the table. Cathy—my brother’s wife—is telling a very funny story about the family’s trips to Bridlington, and her elderly Grandmother is doling out peas, which makes the experience even stranger.
Though it could be that he didn’t intend to put his hand on my thigh. Maybe he has some sort of inner ear problem, and thinks he has his hand on his own thigh. Maybe he thinks he has his hand on the thigh of his brother’s wife—Kelly, the cute little redhead. I mean, it could be that he’s having an affair with her and just didn’t look properly at the person he sat down next to at this heaving dining table.
But when I glance at him surreptitiously to confirm, he’s staring straight ahead at nothing as though everything’s just as it should be. His Gran offers him peas and he says, “Oh, yeah, thanks Gran.”
If only she knew what a devil he is.
I know his name, of course. The youngest is George and he’s Mick. Still not married and with something of a reputation. But if he thinks he’s going to splurge his reputation all over me he’s got another thing coming.
God, that hand is high up on my thigh. How do I get it off without looking like I’m getting it off? I’m in the middle of eating this fabulous Christmas Eve dinner, pork with apple sauce halfway to my mouth. I can’t just suddenly put my hand underneath the table.
They’ll all know if I do. He probably does this sort of stuff all the time. He’s tall and pouty-mouthed and masculine all at the same time, with these limpid, dark blue eyes that could steam off a pair of knickers from twenty paces.