Quaid Jennings is a psychologist. Along with his business partner, Boyd, he lives and works in a big city. Lonely and alone, he's happy when Boyd introduces him to Faydra, one of his many cousins. Faydra has applied to a program for psychiatric nurses and Quaid has taken her to the hospital to interview. There, he sees Clyde, one of his buddies who is a psychiatry resident.
“Who's the hot blonde in with Hagel?” Clyde asked.
“My girlfriend.” Quaid bridled slightly, drawing himself up with his shoulders squared.
“Chill, dude. You're a lucky man, but you know I don't step into another guy's action. She is to die for gorgeous, though.”
“Thanks. I think so, too. She's also got a brilliant mind and a great personality.”
“She got any sisters?”
“All brothers—six of them.”
“You're a brave man! My brothers and I vetted all our sister's dates until she was twenty. We still have a go when she brings a new man home.”
“I haven't met them yet. They live on Alabama.”
Clyde snorted. “Redneck brothers! All older?”
“Yeah.” Quaid squinted at his friend. “Why?”
“Guess you need a lesson in how Southern brothers think.” He put his arm around Quaid's shoulders. “See, we Southern boys don't think like you Yankees.” A Southern accent, which he'd concealed until now, flavored his words.
“No? Do tell.”
“Yep. That's a baby sister, whose virtue must be guarded at all costs. Men like us—the brothers—are on the prowl.”
“All men are, unless they're ancient or dead.”
“Yes, but some are more predatory than others. And a young lady's virtue is her greatest gift.”
“Which you—the brother—must protect at all costs.”
“While trying to nab the virtue of every available woman.”
“Pretty much. But see, that's the worry of that girl's brothers.”
“And if she hasn't any?”
“So much the better. Easier to pluck.”
Quaid laughed loudly, punching Clyde in the ribs. “You're insane.”
“Which is why I'm a shrink. But those good old boys will take you apart if you mistreat the baby.”
“I have no intention of doing that. Faydra's the best thing that ever happened to me. I look in her eyes and see the future.”
Clyde cleared his throat and backed up a little, scratching the back of his head.
“She's right behind me.”
“Yep. Heard every word.”
“Good that I was telling the truth, then.” He winked at his friend and turned to greet Faydra.
Fairly bouncing, she flung her arms around his neck, practically bending him in half. “I got it! I got it!” She jumped and hugged, nearly choking him.
“Fantastic!” he croaked. “Babe. Honey. Faydra!”
“Sorry! I got it!” She let go and kept hopping.
“I knew you could get it!”
“You didn't talk to anyone, pull strings?” she glowered.
“No! Not a soul. I didn't even know you had an interview here until you told me last night.”
“Good. I got it on my own.”
© 2017 Dellani Oakes