Georgette Alden Starts Over

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Georgette Alden Starts Over

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When daytime television star Georgette Alden’s character, Electra Holmes, is killed off, Georgette’s neighbor suggests the actress volunteer at a homeless shelter. She would rather dive through dumpsters for day old creampuffs, but when she learns the shelter needs a spokesperson, she decides to there might be something to this volunteering business.

The director of the Helping Hands shelters, Tony Rodriquez, has had a crush on Electra since his college days, when watching Our Time Tomorrow became his guilty pleasure. Wheelchair bound due to an accident that took his wife's life ten years earlier, Tony figures he hasn't got a chance with the beautiful Georgette. Yet, when they meet, sparks begin to fly and maybe, just maybe, they can find the love they've both been seeking.


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Tony Rodriquez eyed Georgette in a most gratifying way, as though she were the perfect ring at Tiffany’s. She hadn’t been gazed upon by someone who wasn’t acting a part in a good long while and damned if she didn’t like it a good great deal. She sallied forth, a million watt smile lighting her face. “Mr. Rodriquez. What a pleasure.”

She expected him to stand. Old fashioned, she supposed, but once upon a time a gentleman would have stood when a lady entered the room. Tony Rodriquez most certainly appeared to be a gentleman, but gave no more than a bright smile and a nod in her direction.

The reason for his seemingly boorish behavior became apparent a moment later. “Won’t you have a seat?” He motioned to an empty chair before wheeling around the front of the desk in a wheelchair. It took Georgette a full minute to register this: the man was in a wheelchair. He hadn’t stood because he couldn’t. She sat down quickly, feeling glad the chair, the regular chair, not the one with wheels, was there to catch her. She caught her breath and remembered she was an actress. Hadn’t there been a wheelchair-bound man onOur Time Tomorrow? Yes, Brock Brockton. It had been a long time ago, maybe twenty years, but Georgette remembered the story line. Brock Brockton, the handsome young brain surgeon had been shot in a crossfire when terrorists invaded the hospital. Electra had been recovering from a brain tumor. Brock Brockton had saved her life. Because, at the time, Electra was still young and sexy enough for miraculous recoveries, thought Georgette sourly. She chased the thought away. It had no bearing on now, when the very handsome and wheelchair-bound Tony Rodriquez was wheeling up to her and saying, “Please, call me Tony.” His voice would have made Pavarotti weep.

And you must call me Georgette.”

Georgette.” Her name rolled off the man’s tongue as though it tasted like fresh strawberries. His handshake was soft and firm, as it should be. “Peggy, could you give us a moment?”

Oh, of course.” Was she still here? Why, it seemed she was standing in the doorway looking as though her puppy had chewed through a favorite pair of shoes. It was a new look for Peggy Phillip-Morris and Georgette had to admit it didn’t suit her nearly as well as terminally cheerful.

Tony wheeled over to the door and shut it gently. Georgette watched with fascination as the muscles in his forearms corded. He caught her looking and she felt heat rise to her face. “Such strong arms.” Had she just said it aloud?

Thanks.” He smiled at her again and she felt her heart thump even as she told herself to stop gawking. She crossed her legs then uncrossed them again. “So, Georgette.” Good lord, the man had wonderful eyes. “Why are you here?”

The question caught her entirely off guard. “Why am I here?”

An actress of your caliber. Why would you want to do a local public announcement spot that will be seen by three or four insomniacs and a couple of house cats?”

Peggy had quite clearly said channel five, had she not? Or had Georgette assumed? “New York is a big city. Local means a lot more than a handful of people.”

True. But my point is, we’re small potatoes. Hell, we’re practically no potatoes. And you—” Tony gestured towards her with a flourish. Damned if she didn’t like it.

I enjoy giving back to the community.”

Have you done a lot of volunteer work?”

Not per se. I’ve been extremely busy. But I’m currently on hiatus. It’s the perfect time to get involved.” Why was she selling this? She should have stalked out. But she found she wanted the job. Moreover, she wanted to do it well if only to impress Tony Rodriquez. She pressed on. “My character, Electra, ran a Braille school for orphans for a while.”

Tony laughed. “You really want to do this?”

Of course.”

Then we have a slight problem.” What problem? She was volunteering. What more could they want? “Mollie and Saul Hammerstein are our biggest donors. We couldn’t survive without their largess. Mollie fancies herself an actress. She’s apparently a headliner over in Cos Cob.”

Now it was Georgette’s turn to laugh. “Don’t tell me. She played Maria in the Cos Cob production ofSound of Music?”

Tony smirked. “Worse. She was Dolly inHello Dolly.”

Well, surely she understands the need for someone—professional.”

Would that she did. But I think, if you decide to do this, you may well have a co-star.”

Georgette should have said no. The last thing she needed was some suburbanite from Cos Cob gumming up the works. But it was a good cause. And she did have the time. “Co-star it is,” she said.

AuthorAnnie Hoff

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