The next morning, my friend Nancy insisted we visit the hotel on my day off to try to find members of the band, REO Speedwagon. More specifically, the lead singer. Because management worried I might knock on Kevin’s door and jump him, going to his room was out of the question. Besides, I planned to prove them wrong by handling the situation with class.
We scoured the hotel for band members, searching the fitness center, restaurants, gift shop and bars. No sign. At three in the afternoon, we drove back to my house, defeated.
Back home, I flopped onto the sofa, body limp. “How disappointing. He’s so close, yet so far away.”
Nancy plopped down next to me.
The phone rang, and I stretched my arm to reach for it on the end table.
Mary’s voice shook and muttered on the other end. “Lori, you aren’t going to believe this. Kevin Cronin is at the front desk asking for you . . . right now!”
“Holy shit, Mary! What should I do … drive over there? I can be there in ten minutes.”
“No, it’s too late. He’s coming in here to see you. Oh my God, Lori, he’s right here!”
“Hi, Lori.” The foggy male voice I had heard hundreds of times on vinyl record albums and at concerts spoke through the phone. “I was just on my way to the health club and was wondering if you could direct me.”
My heart tried to escape my chest. I barely caught a breath to answer him. “Hold on, I’ll be right there to show you.” I used a teasing tone, knowing full-well I couldn’t expect him to wait for me, but a girl could hope.
His laugh told me he understood the joke and didn’t plan to wait.
A bevvy of chirpy women’s voices, mixed with some male baritones rambled in the background.
“Kevin, I can’t believe I’m not working today. Could you please come and see me tomorrow?”
“I’ll see what I can do.”
“Okay, hope to see you soon.”
The next thing I knew, Mary squealed in my ear. “I can’t believe Kevin Cronin came here to talk to you. He’s the sweetest guy.”
The voices behind her sounded like a crowded conference room.
“Sandy said to tell you she thinks Kevin is ugly.” Mary changed to a whisper, “Don’t listen to her. He’s adorable.”
A husky female voice interrupted. “Let me talk to her. Hey Lori, it’s Doreen from the front desk. How exciting was that? I hope you can meet him in person. He has a great ass.”
“Hi, Lori.” Kyla hijacked the phone. “Wow, Kevin actually came in here to meet you. What a great guy. He was really down-to-earth. Okay, Bill wants to talk to you.”
“Hi, Lori.” Bill chuckled. “How’re you doin’ after talking to Kevin?”
“Oh, Bill. I’m not sure if I’m going to faint, throw up, or cry. Can you believe I wasn’t scheduled to work today, of all days? What if he doesn’t show up tomorrow?”
“Don’t worry. I’ll make sure of it.”