Chapter 4

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When he woke up several hours later, he could feel the warm sun on his face and a massive headache right behind his eyes. The sun on his face told him it was afternoon. He touched his clock, "1:17pm" it chirped. Still too early! He thought and dropped his face back into his pillow.

Apart from the sun on his face and the headache behind his eyes, he also realized that his mouth felt like something he accidently touched once on the one and only time he ever took the subway. Between the feeling in his mouth and the incessant need to use the bathroom, he decided it was time to get up no matter how much he didn't really want to.

Rolling over, I was laying on my stomach?, he scooted to the edge of the bed, I was lying ACROSS the bed?, and slowly made his way to the bathroom.

After a shower, taking three Advil and cleaning himself up, paying particular attention to his teeth, he went to his closet. Even though he didn't find anything where it usually was he was still happy that all the shirts were clustered, all the pants were clustered together, the sweaters, the vests, etc. He smiled a giant smile as he pictured Annie standing in his closet hang up his clothes. He took his time and slowly put everything back into its place.

Done with that and dressed he decided that it was best to walk the apartment with his cane to make sure everything was where it belonged. Cane? Where is my cane? I had it when we left the bar didn't I? I don't remember bringing my cane home? SHIT! Binge drinking on an empty stomach=BAD! Ok. Make it to the door and start walking the apartment from there." With his hands out stretched he slowly made his way through the apartment to the front door not tripping once. He reached the door and turned to face the apartment. He reached out his right hand and found the table where it belonged and to his surprise and joy he found his cane and his house keys right where they were supposed to be.

He picked up his cane from the table, thank you Annie Walker, and checked out the apartment. Starting with the living area and workspace he discovered that only the coffee table was a couple of feet out of place. Checking out the kitchen he realized that the coffee mugs weren't the only things broken; the plates, glasses and bowls were also broken. Shaking his head, he now understood why Annie had given him a wine glass to drink water from.

Sighing and in desperate need of coffee he decided that rather than making coffee and drinking it out of his one useable yet damaged coffee mug, he would go in search of coffee that's already made. He walked down to the neighborhood bodega for his coffee then headed over to Pier 1 to buy new place settings.

As he started walking to the store he smiled; Annie had been right. He was in fact having a better day today than yesterday and realized that it was because he kept thinking about Annie Walker. God Bless the day Annie Walker with her Jo Malone Grapefruit perfume and Louboutin heels clicked into his life.

Once he got to Pier 1 he decided that Annie would probably have a good time helping him pick out the new stuff so he called her.

When she finally answered he heard that she was a little breathless. "Auggie? What's up?"

"You sound winded. What are you doing?"

"Eyal and I are hiking Rock Creek Park. Everything ok?"

He had forgotten she was with Eyal. His stomach dropped to the floor, the smile left his face and his day was officially ruined. "Nothing really. Just checking in; buying coffee mugs."

"Good, don't break these." There was a pause on both sides of the conversation, "I'll see you later then?"

"Yea, have fun." And he hung up before she could say anything else. He hailed a sales associate, "I need some white coffee mugs, will you help me?" The associate led him to the white coffee mugs and he grabbed the first box of mugs he touched, paid for them and went home. The rest, he decided can wait for when Annie could come along. He was annoyed that she couldn't be there with him now. I guess it's just my inner 'Greedy Bastard' coming out again." He thought which in turn reminded him of Clark. Clark, reminded him of Allen's and lots and lots and lots of drinks.

Except he promised Annie that he wouldn't drink himself into a coma; so he doesn't drink himself into a coma he reasoned. It doesn't mean that I can't have two drinks…or maybe four, definitely not more than six or a dozen. After all getting drunk is NOT drinking myself into a coma. Making that decision, he called his car service and headed back to Allen's.

When he walked into the bar, it was fairly empty. He checked his watch and realized it was only 4:40pm. He chose a table toward the outer edge but close enough to the center that he could hear anyone that he knew when they came in. Hoping he would hear Annie but not wanting to look obvious about it, he took the seat that put the door to his right.

"Auggie! How's it going? Kinda early for you isn't it? Where's your better half?"

Auggie's brain stumbled over that one; his better half? He didn't remember ever bringing Parker here. Oh, she must mean Annie. My better half, huh? I like that, he thought. "Emma, my favorite server, I am well but thirsty. I have today and tomorrow off so here I am hoping you will bring me some libation in the form of many, many beers. Annie is with someone else right now." His words and the look on his face when he said it led Emma to only one conclusion.

"Auggie, I'm so sorry, I didn't know you two had broken up. That's really sad. You two always seemed so perfect together. What happened? Do you want to talk about it?"

"Emma, it's not what you think." Did everybody know what he was obviously too stupid to know? He thought. "Annie and I never dated. We're just friends."

"Yea, sure you were. The exs always want to remain friends", she said putting air quotes around the word as if he could see them, "after they bust the crap out of your heart. I'll bring beers; many, many beers."

"And food. I promised not to drink myself into a coma and since I haven't eaten since yesterday…I think I ate yesterday…? Anyway, I need food."

"Ok." She shook her head and sighed as she left to get the beers and food.

Auggie was surprised. She didn't let him order; strange. Emma returned in a few minutes with a pitcher of beer and some water. "I didn't order" Auggie said.

"That's all right, Auggie. I gotcha covered. Pitcher and glass are at 12:00." She said as she again walked away. Within minutes she was back. "Ok. At 10 o'clock you have fries, at 12 o'clock you have a plate of chili dogs and I moved your glass & pitcher of beer to 2 o'clock. Enjoy."

"Emma, how did you know?"

"It's my job. I have been waitressing here since before you showed up. I know what all my regulars like. Say Thank You with money." She smiled and left again.

His stomach growled and he dug into his chili dogs and fries.

Half way through his meal he inhaled an unmistakable scent; Tom Ford Azure Lime.

"Well, it can't be good when you are sitting by yourself, wolfing down what? Chili dogs and fries?"

Auggie swallowed his mouthful of food, "Jai Wilcox. What brings you here so early in the evening?"

Jai sat down at the table facing the door, "Amazingly enough, I'm at odd ends." With another mouthful of food Auggie gave him a quizzical look. "Reva cancelled our plans for tonight. She's working on some project that needs to get done. Where's Annie?"

"Why does everyone ask me that? We aren't joined at the hip." Auggie's face showed frustration at the question but he continued, "She is out with Eyal." Jai was not surprised at the new look of unhappiness on his face when he told him where Annie was.

Jai scoffed, "Not joined at the hip? Since when? You too have been, to use your words, joined at the hip since the day she walked into the Agency."

Before Auggie could reply a new voice was heard from. "Hey! GB! Didn't think I would see you back here so soon. Where's that hot Annie?" Auggie rolled his eyes and Jai barked a laugh.

"Annie is out with someone else tonight." Jai answered for him. "I'm Jai. What's the GB stand for?"

"Greedy Bastard. I'm Clark, nice to meet you. You were here last night right? With the cute burnette? Where's she?"

"She is still at work."

"Man, seems like all the women are off doing things tonight without us." There was a pause, "Guys night out, I guess." He said as he smiled. "But there aren't enough glasses to go around." He signaled Emma over. "Two more glasses and another pitcher please."

"Where's your girl tonight?" Auggie asked

"I don't have one right now. Actually not since about a week ago."

"But the girl last night?"

"My co-worker trying to cheer me up." Clark answered. Emma brought the glasses and a new pitcher for the table. "I've got this round, Jai gets the next round." Clark volunteered.

The three men sat around their table, drinking, wondering what they were supposed to say now. Finally Jai stumbled on to a topic, "What does Greedy Bastard mean anyway?"

Clark chuckled, "See Auggie here is a Greedy Bastard. He wants all the girls for himself and he doesn't want to share any of them."

"I do not. Now you're just exaggerating."

"Oh really? Clark questions. "You were engaged to a lovely brunette, Parker, while at the same time making sure Annie didn't have time to find someone to be with so you could hang out with her whenever you wanted to. Sound about right?"

Auggie flushed with embarrassment at the break down Clark gave. "You make it sound worse than it was."

Jai interrupted, "You were engaged?!" This actually made Jai angry. "You…You…You…" he stammered to a halt because he couldn't think of the right nasty thing to call Auggie for treating Annie like that. He took a breath and started over, "You got engaged to someone else even though you're in love with Annie? I never thought you were so stupid. And Greedy!" He pointed at Clark then at Auggie, "You're right, he's greedy and a bastard!"