Chapter Fourteen

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Exhausted, Noah flopped down in his chair and checked his watch. How is it that I've already worked a full day and it's not even nine-thirty? He'd run his legs off, putting out professional fires all over the office while trying to stage an all important coup of a personal nature. He was just about to call Kate when Jeremy, the gorgeous guy from the art department, appeared at his door.

"It's done." He tossed a large envelope onto Noah's desk with a smile.

"What? But how?" Noah motioned for him to close the door before inspecting the contents of the envelope. "I just gave this to you."

"It took less than ten minutes. I just scanned the original invitation and made a few changes in Photoshop. I added in the red details to make it more believable. I hope that's okay. What do you think? " He asked, watching Noah inspect his work.

"I think you're a genius." Noah answered with a wide smile. And hotter than a southern city sidewalk in August. "Not sure how I'll repay you for this." How about dinner at my place? A backrub? A front rub?

"I'm sure we'll think of something." Jeremy replied, surprising Noah with his flirtatious tone. "Let me know if there's anything else I can do for you." He added as he closed the door.

Shall I make a list, Noah thought with a grin as he scrolled through his contacts for Kate's number. He'd promised to call her as soon as all the necessary traps had been set. They didn't have much time, with the event just two nights away. Thankfully, Noah thrived under pressure. Add in a bit of bling and romantic trickery and voila! He was a master of making the impossible possible.

He thought back to her unexpected call the night before. They'd talked and laughed for well over an hour, trading notes on everything that had transpired between Natalie and Dash. He was shocked but thrilled to learn of her relationship with Colt, knowing that the door was wide open for Natalie now. They'd worked together and devised a plan that would hopefully end with Happily Ever After. With the help of all the key players, Noah knew the Fox would get his Rabbit after all.

"You know they were at the same gala together, right? The masquerade ball at Lincoln Center?" Noah informed her.

"What?" Kate squealed.

"And you won't believe it but Dash was the fox—you know, the man who caused her to spill her drink all over herself?"

"What are the odds?" Kate exclaimed. "She was so pissed at that guy! Especially because she ran into her ex right after that, looking a hot mess."

"There's no way Natalie could ever look a hot mess." Noah confirmed.

"That's what I told her."

"She still has Dash's monogrammed handkerchief too. She said she figured it out after the party."

"I can't believe they didn't recognize each other."

"Well, they were all wearing masks, so..."

"Yes, but they didn't recognize each other's voices or anything."

"It's been well over a year, Kate. And it's not like she was on the lookout for him. I mean, what would he be doing at a New York gala when he's supposed to be in Houston?"

"You're right. And I'm sure Dash wasn't really paying attention either. He hates those type of functions, and anything related to opera specifically. I'm sure his eyes were on his watch and not the guests. He just wanted to get the hell out of there." Kate paused. "It's too bad we can't stage another masquerade ball. You know, get them back together in the same room, dressed to the nines? They could whip their masks off and fall into each other's arms."

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