Corky wrapped the covers around Violet. The front door clicked closed. Before she had a chance to inspect who it was she heard Faith call out. In the kitchen she found Faith and Buffy putting some groceries up. “Settling in?”
Faith twirled a jar of olives in her hand, making as if she was inspecting the label. In an instance, Faith was replaced by a sullen twelve year old doing the same job on a box of store brand cereal. Corky knew better. “You found some interesting recipe that will make other people like olives, kid?”
“You still like cornflakes?” Faith all but slammed the jar on the kitchen island. She didn't look at her sister.
“I like them, yeah.”
“Good, I didn't get you any.” She turned and finished putting the cans and jars in the pantry before she headed back out the door.
“I walked into that one.” Corky jumped up on a stool and leaned back on the counter. “You have any advice for a confused older sister?”
Buffy paused mid-stocking and stared wide eyed at her. Her hazel eyes bounced back and forth like she was going to find the answer somewhere in the kitchen. Maybe it would be in the stove. “I'm not on her good side either.”
“Sounds about right.”
“Do you know how long Faith's going to be in town?” Corky crossed her arms.
“No.” Buffy shifted in place. She walked toward the hall before turning mid-step. “Oh, some woman was looking for you.”
A panic washed over Corky. She closed her eyes when her stomach clinched. Corky put up a finger and swallowed. “Tan. Blond. And Obnoxious?”
“How does she always know?” Corky went to the window over the sink and peeked through the paisley curtains into the driveway. She had a clear view of the house next door. “Why is she still here? I thought she'd be sucking some old millionaire dry somewhere.”
“Maybe she won't recognize you?” Buffy said, she sounded closer than before. “I mean, she didn't give Faith a second glance.”
“Well, the last time she saw Faith, the kid was twelve. Last time she saw me I was nineteen. Let's say I still look the same. Faith...not so much.”
“You really don't want to see this woman.”
“Delilah Finckle is the devil.”
“That would explain the tan.” Buffy clicked her way out of the kitchen.
“Faith sure knows how to pick'em.” Corky turned from the window and leaned against the counter. “This is not good.”
By the time Corky finished dropping the rest of her loot in the hidden compartment in the garage, the sun was half way up in the sky. And sweat was pummeling down her throat to soak her top. Her work gloves felt sticky, and clung to her hands as she moved a couple of racks, and a tool box over the hiding place. She pulled the gloves off and used the back of them to wipe her forehead. Getting the bags out of the truck hadn't been much trouble, especially after she pulled the vehicle into the seclusion of the garage. Last thing she needed was a witness saying he saw her unloading mysterious whatnots in the early hours of the day.
She heard sharp foot steps behind her. Corky twirled around to come face to face with the blackest gaze she'd ever seen. One finely arched eyebrow raised. And cupid bow lips twitched into an easy smirk.
“I thought you might need a drink.”
Corky gritted her teeth. Delilah Finckle had a glass of lemonade held out to her. She still painted her nails firetruck red. And the nails matched the flaming pair of pumps that graced long legged Delilah's feet. From the look of those shoes, and the chandeliers that hung from her ears, the woman just might have married some poor rich fellow. Corky took the glass, careful not to let her skin touch Delilah. The woman would snatch for whatever she could.
“Delilah, you look like...hell.” Corky slid her eyes from Delilah's calves up the pencil skirt and let her gaze burn through the woman. It wouldn't do not to appreciate art, even if she knew what was hidden underneath all that pretty.
“Carla, now don't go out of your way to flatter me.” A slight southern twang twisted Delilah's words. Corky wondered how long did the woman have to live in Georgia to pull that one off. “You shouldn't overwork yourself darling.”
“How many times do I have to tell you? It's Corky.” Corky drained the glass. She figured if Delilah really wanted to kill her, it'd be with a gun. “And no matter how many times you watch Designing Women, you're not Southern.”
“Just shoot down all my balloons why don't you.” Delilah smirked, her eyes grazing over Corky's body. “I see you're settling down. Plan on staying for a while?”
A faint gleam caught Corky's eye. She stared at Delilah's left hand and shook her head. “Isn't your husband looking for you?”
Delilah put her right hand to her chest as she examined her ring finger. Her mouth puckered out as she rolled her eyes. “Now how did I forget to mention that little detail. It's true. I'm off the market. So no touching.”
“As tempting as that is, what name are you going by now a days so I can renew my restraining order.”
“Oh, it's still Finckle, Hershel took my name. Wasn't that just sweet of him?”
So sweet, in fact, she wanted to vomit.