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Edward Kendrick
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https://edwardkendrick.blogspot.com/2019/01/the-hotel-46.html

We got to the shelter about ten minutes before the performance was due to begin. I suggested Edwin find a seat before I headed back stage. As I left him, I saw him stop to talk to a woman and her two children. Whatever he said made the kids look at him in awe and their mother smile.

The show was accepted well by the small audience. It was good to see the women who were there to escape their abusers relax enough to enjoy the comedy and even laugh at times.

I said as much to the troupe after they took their final bows.

"It's why we do this," Phil replied. "Why you brought us all together to begin with."

"And why we'll stick with it even if we have to be pushed on stage in our wheel chairs," Noah added.

"Or walkers," Ramsey said. "Except for Caitlin. She's going to grow old gracefully." He winked at her and she blushed.

"A budding romance?" Edwin whispered as he joined us.
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The Hotel – 46
The Hotel – 46
edwardkendrick.blogspot.com
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It's release day for 'Dead and Hating It' from JMS Books!
https://www.jms-books.com/romance-c-29_105/dead-and-hating-it-p-2637.html

Sequel to Searching for My Killer

Kurt Foster is a ghost, killed by the man he loved, unable to move on until he can prove he was murdered. But how can he do that?

Detective Mike Harris and Sage Crewe, Mike's lover and a medium who talks to ghosts, both knew Kurt. When his death is deemed a suicide, they don't believe it. With the help of ghosts Brody and Jon, they go to Kurt's apartment, looking for anything to prove he might have been murdered. Kurt is there and he tells them what happened.

Will Mike and Sage, with the help of Brody, Jon, and a third ghost named Tonio, be able to come up with the evidence to back Kurt's claim? While they try, will Tonio finally accept it's time for him to move on, or will helping Kurt make him realize there's more to life -- and death -- than losing the man he once loved?
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Edwin obviously was aware of my scrutiny because he stopped in the middle of a story to ask, "Do I still come up to your high standards?"

I could feel the heat rising in my face and was thankful that the waitress had arrived with our meals. I dug in, trying to ignore his amused smile.

"Well?" he persisted. "Do I?"

"They aren't that high," I muttered.

"That can be taken several ways."

"I meant… Damn it, Edwin!"

He laughed. "I was teasing. How is your dinner?"

"Excellent; and yours?"
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The Hotel – 45
The Hotel – 45
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Edwin leaned in, so I knew what would come next was something he didn't want anyone around us to overhear. "I don't have to drive to get down here, given what I am."

"Oh," I replied weakly when I got what he meant. "Teleportation or whatever you call it."

"Exactly. All you need to do is call and I'll be here within seconds. That is—" he stared at me, his gaze locking with mine, "—if you want me to."

"Whenever one of us is—"

"Don't say it, Austin. There's more to it, to what I feel for you, than you think. Maybe you don't feel the same. If so, I can accept it, but I hope I'm wrong."

I looked down, whispering, "I don't know. I never… I knew, or thought that what happened was the result of two men who were attracted to each other on a very basic level. I tried to keep my emotions out of it ............................
The Hotel - 44
The Hotel - 44
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Because it was a Saturday evening, the restaurant was busy. When we got to the hostess stand, Edwin gave her his name. She started to enter it in the computer when she obviously realized I was with him. We knew each other because this was one of the restaurants where the troupe performed occasionally.

"I'll have a table for you in—" she did something on the computer and nodded, "—five minutes."

"Jumping us to the top of the list?" I asked with a bit of amusement.

"Austin, it's you. Of course I am."

That raised Edwin's eyebrows, so I quietly explained why. He shook his head, murmuring, "I didn't know I was keeping company with someone famous."

"Uh-huh. Only in my own mind, and hers," I replied.
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The Hotel – 43
The Hotel – 43
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https://edwardkendrick.blogspot.com/2019/01/the-hotel-42.html

Kirby did stay with the troupe. I found actresses to replace Jenn and Tessa, one of whom we'd used before when we did a show requiring more than two women. And so our lives moved on. I thought about Edwin more often than I liked for the first couple of months, then he slowly became just a memory of a man I could have loved, if things had been different.

Christmas came and went. We, the troupe, did a modified version of 'The Christmas Carol' for senior centers and shelters in the city as well as at several local restaurants. The last were paying gigs which helped defray our expenses.

We all had 'normal' daytime jobs, of course. I work at a small art gallery, Marsh at an electronics store, and Caitlin spends her days selling women's clothing at a mall. Phil, Noah, and Ramsey are, no big surprise, waiters, as is one of the new actresses. Kirby does telemarketing, which he hates but as he says, it keeps him in food and clothes. The other new actress is a beautician.

April rolled around. We had decided to do an oldie but goodie, 'The Importance of Being Ernest'. Even with Caitlin now acting, as well as doing the costumes, we still had to bring in two outside actors we'd used on occasion. I was debating, as I had several times in the past, enlarging the size of the troupe, but still hadn't made a decision on that.
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The Hotel - 42
The Hotel - 42
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If I were a different man, I might have thrown everything over and remained at the hotel with Edwin. Not that he suggested it, but it would have been interesting to see what might develop between us beyond great sex.

I'm not, though. I have responsibilities—ones I take very seriously—so Sunday morning I told the troupe at breakfast that we'd be leaving around noon to return to the city.

Edwin had already given me a check for our services—as he put it. It was larger than was agreed upon in our contract. "For the second performance," he explained. I wasn't about to argue.

"Despite everything that happened, I'm going to miss this place," Ramsey said as we gathered in the dining room for lunch before leaving.

"I'm not," Kirby said bitterly. He'd taken Jenn's arrest hard. Not, he told me privately, that he was surprised. "I was afraid it was her, but I didn't want to believe it. Not here." He touched his chest over his heart. "I loved, no, I love her. It will take a long time before that fades away."
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The Hotel - 41
The Hotel - 41
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"Okay, enough of my playing the put-upon owner," I said. "When will you know for certain one way or another about the pendant?"

Edwin cocked his head as if listening to something before replying. "Now. Kirby took one look at it and wanted to know why Orville had it. When Orville told him, Kirby broke down. He said he gave it to Jenn two months ago, to celebrate her birthday. He noticed she wasn't wearing it the morning after Tessa disappeared and asked her why. She said she'd put it on again once she knew for certain that Tessa had been lying about having an affair with him and not before."

"That would explain the tension between them." I looked at Edwin. "You can, umm, mind talk I guess you'd call it with Orville?"

"Yes. It's something all shifters can do."

"Another question. Jenn must have lied to him when he interviewed her about when the last time was she saw Tessa. Why didn't he pick up on that?"
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The Hotel – 40
The Hotel – 40
edwardkendrick.blogspot.com
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