“I’m actually here on business,” the young man volunteered, bringing Kara back to the present. “I’m an engineer, and my company is consulting on a defense contract. It’s worth a few hundred million to our client, and every time they’ve got a problem, I’m part of the team that’s got to fly out from Detroit and fix it for them.”
“That doesn’t sound so good,” Kara said. The man seemed awfully young to her for that level of responsibility.
“It pays well,” he said. Then his eyes brightened and the corners of his mouth perked up. “Hey, you’re actually talking to me.”
The blunt acknowledgement that Kara had been trying to avoid conversation embarrassed her. “I’m sorry. I guess I’ve been rude. I have a lot on my mind.”
“Why are you apologizing?” the man asked. “I should have taken the hint two hours ago. But the truth is, I think we’re going to be waiting a very long time and I really don’t feel like working or reading.”
“So talking to me is just making the best of a bad situation?” It hurt her ego to realize that the young man hadn’t been hitting on her.
“Oh no,” the man said. “Talking to you would be great in any situation, but it’s especially wonderful under these circumstances.”
Kara felt a smile lifting her face. He was flirting and that had been a genuinely nice thing to say.
Evidently responding to her smile, the man offered her his hand. “I’m Ron.”
“So you want to make a bet on whether or not we fly to Detroit today?”
“Do you want to get there or not?” Kara asked.
“Oh, I’d like to fly home,” Ron said, “but for some reason I don’t think Mother Nature is going to let us.”
Kara shook her head. “Snow or no snow, we have to get to Detroit today. Tomorrow is Christmas.”
Ron’s growing smile might almost be considered a smirk. “So you want to bet?”
She decided to see what he had in mind. “What are the stakes?”
“If we get off this plane here in Newark, you let me buy you a drink in the bar.”
“I have a boyfriend,” Kara reminded him. She decided not to mention that she was also a lot older than Ron.
“It’s just a drink,” Ron insisted.
“And when the plane lands in Detroit like it’s supposed to?”
“You buy me a drink.”
Despite the delays, the cramped conditions, and the crummy weekend with Bobby, Kara began to enjoy herself. There was something about a handsome man working hard to keep her attention that completely tickled her fancy.
“So let me get this straight,” Kara said. “If I win, my reward is that I get to buy you a drink?”
“Why not?” Ron answered. “I can’t think of a better prize than winning the right to buy you one.”
His gaze suddenly dipped toward Kara’s cleavage. It was just a fraction of a second before he wrenched it up again, but it was enough to prove a drink was only the beginning of what he wanted. Still, they were in a public airport. How far could he expect to go?
Kara crossed her legs, better exposing her shapely knee and sleek calf. She was beginning to have fun with this. “You seem mighty certain of yourself for a guy who probably graduated college last May,” she told him.
Ron completely ignored her reference to his age. “If you’d feel better about it,” he suggested. “You can buy me the drink in Newark and I will buy you the drink in Detroit.”
“That seems fair,” Kara agreed.
He leaned closer to her, and for a moment she thought that rugged square jaw was positioning for a kiss. But Ron lifted his hand before she could protest and pointed toward the window. “I really think I’m going to win.”
Kara twisted in her seat so she could see what he was pointing at.
“It’s starting to snow here as well,” Ron told her. “Somehow I don’t think we’ll be making it to Detroit today.”