Hi there. My name is Meagan Nelson, aka Meggie. I am originally from New York City. Well, that isn’t exactly true. I’m a mid-western girl, but I spent time there. The Big Apple, I mean.
I’m about to tell you a story that is so completely outrageous, I wouldn’t hold it against you if you think the whole thing is made up. You know, romantic fiction. But, this really happened to me. I think. I had had a lot to drink that night…
It was the fall of 2013, and back then I was working for a home healthcare company in Grand Junction, Colorado – a thriving, bustling metropolis of about 50,000 – that is, if you counted more than a few of us locals twice. But I am not really a local. I just moved here about ten years ago running away from my past. God, I have wanted to leave this one-horse town so badly, but have started to feel as though I have some intractable roots growing. Including a husband. Fuck.
Anyway, back to my story. My BFF, Jen, and I worked together. The F at the end is no longer true as we have since gone our separate ways, at least as far as two people can go in this everyone-knows-everyone-else town. She was my boss. I loved her. We got into a lot of trouble together. Meggie and Jen. Inseparable.
We were early enough that we were able to grab the prized corner of the bar where we could sit and talk easily while being able to each check out a different view corridor, if you know what I mean. I can’t remember what we were drinking, but I do know that Happy Hour started at four, and we had to chat up the bartender to get us early Happy Hour pricing.
“The Joint,” as it was called, was packed. At around 6:30 p.m., Jen’s eyes widened and held mine for an important moment signifying that someone “interesting” was approaching. I then heard a man say, “Hi. Excuse me.” I turned around to see what Jen was looking at, and there stood a very handsome man. He must have been around 6’2”, salt and pepper hair, very tan, mid-fifties. I think both of us put on our warmest smiles as we looked up at him.
“My name is Nick. My friend and I are looking for a place to sit for dinner. Do you mind moving over one bar stool so that we can sit at the bar? Well, so much for the prized bar corner. Jen and I met eyes and nodded.
Jen said, “Sure.” And with that she got up and sat on the other side of me. Nick said his thanks before heading to the back of the restaurant. We tapped our drink glasses and shrugged. We had spent many an interesting night drinking together, but this was something a bit different.
Nick returned trailed by his friend. Dear sweet Jesus. My heart stopped. The bar went noticeably quiet near us. Jen pinched me under the bar. Who in the world was this? About the same height and build as Nick, they both had a deep tan (they no doubt had been outside in the sun for some time), but Nick’s friend had longer, more salty hair, and the deepest blue eyes I have ever seen. And unlike his friend, he wore a wedding band.
Nick introduced us to his friend, Lindsey, and then thanked us again for making space for them. Lindsey sat right next to me – us now having the corner. He extended a hand. I took it in mine and it dwarfed me. He, too, thanked us and asked if he could buy us a drink to express their thanks. Of course.
“You’re not from around here,” I found myself saying to the two of them. I was feeling warmed from the adult beverages – and fearless.
“No, we’re not,” Lindsey replied. “How did you know?”
“You have all your teeth,” I deadpanned.
Lindsey lost it, and spit his drink onto the bar. He started choking. Laughing. Tears creasing the corners of his eyes. That’s when I fell for him I think. Lindsey.
As the night wore on, we learned they were friends from childhood both now living in Los Angeles, driving their twin, black Porsche 911 convertibles across the Southwest on their annual trip to someplace they had never been before. That year, they were headed to Mount Rushmore in South Dakota.
Time raced by and the conversation was a blur. But, even now I can recall vividly the chemistry I felt for this man.
I wanted to sleep with him. I told him I was from New York. That was a lie. I also told him my husband was out of town for a few days. That was the truth. God, my heart was racing. I invited him and Nick to join Jen and me at my house to kick on our little party for the night. Lindsey’s eyes lit up, and his smile heated me. I’ll never forget what he said next.
“Oh, Meagan.” His head dipped, but those beautiful ocean blue eyes locked on mine. “What an amazing invitation, Meggie. I wish I could. I just can’t. But, I will live the rest of my life cherishing your request.”
It was closing time. Shit. Where did the night go? We slowly got up, and the four of us made our way outside into the cool, sobering crisp air of the Colorado fall. Lindsey stopped and took both my hands in his, and just looked at me and shook his head. “Meggie,” he was saying. “Meggie. I will always remember you.”
He drew me in for a hug, and we did not kiss. But I sure as hell folded my wanting body and aroused breasts into him. There was no doubt regarding this latest, last ditch unspoken invitation. He slowly pulled away, and never breaking eye contact, he said, “Thank you, Megs, you have no idea.”
And with that, we all said our goodbyes, and walked into our own cold Grand Junction night. I would never hear from him again. But I would think of him.
It was last December, 2019. Jen and I had gone our separate ways. The company we worked for had gone out of business, and each of us struggled to regain our footing. So much about life was different now. My phone rang. I let it go to voice mail.
That night, I sat down in my humble living room, my husband-of-going-on-ten-years was again out of town. I touched my way to voice mail. What happened next was right out of a fairytale.
“Meagan? My name is Andrew Cole. I am a private investigator from Southern California. Do not worry at all; this has nothing directly to do with you. I have been hired to investigate an event that happened seven years ago, and I believe you attended that event. Would you be so kind as to contact me?” He left a phone number with an area code I did not recognize.
I went to the kitchen and poured myself another glass of Chardonnay, and returned to my couch. I dialed. Andrew was kind and cordial. What he said next rocked my world.
After repeating that I didn’t have anything to be worried about, he said that he had been hired to investigate a dinner in 2013 in Grand Junction, Colorado, that involved two women and two men who were on their way to Mount Rushmore in their Porsche sports cars.”
I think I screamed. I took a deep breath, and after apologizing, I said, “Lindsey and Nick.”
So I guess you were there.”“Was I ever.”
“Well,” he went on, “Lindsey has written a book. I have not read it, and I do not know what it is about. But, either you are in it, the dinner is in it, or it is dedicated to you. In any event, Lindsey hired me to find you. He wants to give you a signed copy.”
As I said, my name is Meagan Nelson. I am a real person. Lindsey is not. He is a fairy tale. Too bad he isn’t mine.