Thanks for the suggestions! If you missed the beginning of the story, you can head back here to catch up.
I’m going with a suggestion from Book Squirt – a simple suggestion that Drew’s parents are not thrilled with “Anna” since Drew has neglected to introduce her until now.
“So,” Drew’s mother held out her hand to shake mine, the edges of various gemstones pressing into my skin as she squeezed, “you’re the Anna we’ve heard so little about.”
“Excuse my wife,” his father interjected, “she tends to get right to the point. Not that she doesn’t have one, mind you.”
“You two couldn’t wait until after dinner to get started?” Drew replied.
“Well, if dinner could have started on time…” His mother stared at me and crossed her arms.
Drew leaned over to me and whispered loudly, “Don’t mind them, old people get cranky when they don’t have dinner by five. Low blood sugar.”
“Old?!” Drew’s mother stood with a hand on her hip, the other hand touching her own face, as if she was searching for a rogue wrinkle.
“Don’t rile your mother, Drew.”
Drew laughed, looking unconcerned, while I stood there horrified, stomach churning. “I’m really sorry.”
A petite blonde with Drew’s same pale blue eyes and single-cheek dimple walked up and handed me her empty glass. “We’re starving. Are we ready to eat yet or are we still waiting on Drew’s fiancée?”
“Uh, hi. I’m Anna.” I extended my empty hand.
“Oh! I’m so sorry, I thought…” I didn’t need her to finish to know what she thought. In my rumpled linen skirt and simple black blouse I more closely resembled the catering staff than any of the dinner guests. “I’m Janice, Drew’s sister.”
“I could tell.” I smiled, but noticed I seemed to be the only one. I stammered as I added, “You have the same smile.”
“Oh,” she grabbed my hand and linked my arm with hers, walking me through the room, “you’re sweet. She’s nicer than your other girlfriends, Drew.”
I glanced over my shoulder at Drew, who rolled his eyes, but smiled. “Fiancée, Janice.”
“Same diff,” she called back to him. She turned to me and patted my arm. “You’ll have to sit by me so you can tell me all about yourself. And don’t let me parents get to you.”
I managed a smile. “Oh, are they usually like that with Drew’s girlfriends?”
“Oh no. Not that I can remember. But he’s never dated an outsider before. They’ll feel better after you’ve been vetted.”
I stopped behind my chair at the dining room table. “Vetted?”
Janice smoothed her pale pink dress as she slid into her seat, motioning for me to do the same. “Sorry, I’m exaggerating a bit. They’ll just ask you a billion questions – where you’re from, where you went to school, what you do for a living, who you know – normal stuff.”
Alright. So, for now, we’ll continue the story with your suggestions.
[If at any time, and of your writerly types want to jump in and add to the story on your blogs, with either back story or a continuation of what's happening here, feel free to leave a link in the comments.]
This week’s question: It’s rather obvious that Drew’s family is wealthy. Where does their money come from?
Bonus question: I think Battie/Anna needs to find a way out of dinner. But how?