“You know if we don’t hurry up we’re going to be late right,” Pete said as he climbed out of the taxi and all but glared at Griff.
“It’s not my fault you had to change pants again,” Griff answered with a grin as he paid the fare before offering his hand to Pete.
Narrowing his eyes Pete glared at his boyfriend, “not your fault? Just who’s obsession with black tie were we indulging?” Pete asked as he let himself be lead into the event center.
Griff just smirked as he looked around, “Do you think Todd and Heather are here yet? Let’s find our table.” He said as he turned to look at the board, searching for his families table.
Rolling his eyes Pete scanned the room, seeing that while a lot of people seem to have found their seats there were still a good number of people standing and mingling. “At least you didn’t make us too late,” Pete remarked.
“These things never start on time I knew we’d be fine. Believe me I’m not going to do anything that my mother won’t like when the night gets reported to her by her spies,” Griff joked, tapping his finger on their names on the board before checking a few other tables as well, “and we’re at table 22. It should be this way,” he added as he started heading toward a table along the wall near the middle of the hall with an okay view of the stage.
“Just how much did your family pay for this table anyways,” Pete asked as he followed, glancing at all the other people around them, most of them older and all the women seemed loaded down with jewelry.
“I didn’t ask but this distance from the front probably no more than ten,” Griff answered as they reached the table where Todd and Heather were standing to greet them.
“Did you just say your parents paid ten thousand for this table,” Todd questioned in a stunned whisper as he glanced between the table and Griff a couple times.
“No, I said no more than that, it was likely less. I’ll have a better idea when they announce how much was raised for the library program tonight,” Griff said as he pulled Todd into a hug and offered his hand to Heather.
“Wow,” Todd said as she shook his head, “I know your family has money but still sometimes it just surprises me.”
Griff just shrugged as he turned to scan the room, “are the cocktails still circulating?”
“Ah, I think so, they came by a couple minutes ago. But it’s just wine,” Heather answered as she held up her glass of white wine.
“It normally is this early. The better stuff comes later. And if they’re still cumulating it means there is still time for me to meet and greet a few people now, save some time later,” Griff said as he adjusted and checked his suit.
“We just got here,” Pete half complained from where he’d just sat down.
“Don’t worry, You’re good, just get the names of anyone who stops by the table looking for a Griffith so I can follow up later,” Griff told Pete, giving his boyfriend a quick kiss before vanishing into the crowd to mingle.
“He is completely in his element isn’t he?” Heather asked the table as she sipped at her glass.
“I’m beginning to better understand why he was such a great social chair,” Todd admitted as he looked around at all the people drifting around and how seamlessly Griff fit among them.
“You should see his mother, she knows how to work a room,” Pete responded as he looked toward one of the waiters and motioned them over to take a glass of wine.
“Excuse me, is this the Griffith table?” a man about their age asked as he stepped closer to the table and looked between them.
“Yes, it is,” Pete said as he stood up to face the newcomer, “John’s among the crowd somewhere but I’m sure he’ll be back by before to long. I’m Peter, Bradley,” he added as he held out his hand.
“I’m sure he will be. Helen would have definitely taught him to check in on the table often,” the man said as he took Pete’s hand, “my name is Marcus, Marcus Lowells. Do you mind if I wait with you. For a few moments at least,” he asked, looking from Pete to Todd and Heather.
“Sure, take a seat. Name’s Todd and this is Heather,” Todd offered as he shook Marcus’ hand as well. “So you know Griff’s family?”
“Griff’s?” Marcus asked as he took a glass of wine from a passing waiter before sitting at the table.
“John, that’s was his nickname in collage,” Pete supplied as he studied Marcus, “But you knew him before that. You were in high school with him. Weren’t you,” he asked.
“Yes, John was a year behind, he dated my sister for awhile,” Marcus answered with a friendly smile, “he was a good friend.”
Dropping his own smile Pete took a breathe before responding, “It wasn’t your sister he was dating. And you weren’t friends. You were more,” he stated as he met Marcus’s gaze.
“Pete?” Todd asked as he and Heather exchanged looks.
Returning the look Marcus nodded toward Pete, “So you are the boyfriend I’ve heard so much about. John made some big waves when he came out. Perhaps bigger than he knows,” Marcus stated plainly as he sipped his wine.
“Yeah, I’m the boyfriend,” Pete confirmed before grinning, “And you’re the ex.”
Marcus glanced around for a moment before responding, “That I may be. For now at least but he clearly remembers and enjoyed our time enough to ensure his current play thing knew my name,” he said as he stood, straightening his suit just as a couple approached the table. “But I really must keep mingling. And as both John and I will be living in the same city again; I’ll simply have to catch up with John another time.”
“Yeah, you do that,” Pete said back with a half glare.
“It was a pleasure to meet you all,” Marcus said, nodding toward Todd and Heather before vanishing into the crowd with a last smirk toward Pete.
Taking a deep breathe Pete did his best to put Marcus out of his mind as he turned toward the new couple, introducing himself and making a note of their names for John later.
Just as he did with the three others that came by the table before there was a subtle shift in the room and everyone started making their way toward their seats, including John who was quickly making notes in a mini notepad as he slipped into the seat next to Pete, “who stopped by?” he asked as he leaned close.
Pushing his lips together Pete gave him the names of one by one, finishing with, “and Marcus Lowells.”
“What? He’s…” Griff said in surprise as he started to look around before forcing himself to stop. “That’s….I didn’t know. I would have-I have no idea what I would have done if I’d known,” he said honestly. “I didn’t even know he was in LA…”
“Well he is,” Pete said as he reached out and rested his arm over Griff’s shoulder.
“Yeah,” Griff said as he leaned into Pete as lights dimmed and the speakers began.