“Noah,” Alex called out jovially. He cleared his throat and chuckled. “I mean, Mayor Adlin. I have some friends I’d like you to meet.”
Noah stood from behind his desk and reached for Joshua’s outstretched hand. “Good afternoon. Any friend of Alexander’s is a friend of mine.”
“Likewise,” Joshua said. “I’m Joshua Roland, and this is my wife Amber.” Joshua stepped back so Amber could shake Noah’s hand.
“The Roland’s are looking to buy property, or the right home if we find it, here in the Hudson Valley, so I’ll be taking them around over the next few days.” Alex turned to Joshua and Amber. “Noah is not only our mayor here in Kingston, but my business partner and former college roommate.”
“Ah, so you must know Marcos too.” Joshua played his part well, turning back to Noah with a pleasant interest. “His wife’s twin brother and I go way back.” Way back meaning a crash course the night before in everything they may need to know about Malik should Noah choose to ask, which he wouldn’t because he’d only met Malik once at Mark and Hazel’s wedding. Noah was too inebriated that evening to remember anyway. This was the perfect cover.
“Yes, Mark and I go way back as well.” Noah sat on the corner of his desk, already relaxed and with zero suspicion in his tone. “You could say Alex and I knew Mark before he was a famous prince.” Noah chuckled and the other three joined him. This was working brilliantly.
“Anyway, we’re heading over to the county building so I can introduce them to my new girlfriend. I’m sure you know her. Krystina over at the register of deeds office.”
“No, I’m sorry. I don’t know her. But I don’t spend much time over at the county building. Got enough on my plate dealing with challenges in the city to worry about the county.” His tone was earnest. From what Alex could tell, Noah didn’t know Krystina. Interesting. Noah turned to Alex and clapped him on the shoulder. “You didn’t tell me you had a girlfriend. You stud. We just went to dinner the other night and you never mentioned her?”
“I just met her actually,” Alex said. “We had our first date two days ago.”
“Well good for you.” Noah turned to the Roland’s. “We’ve been trying to get this kid dating for a while now. The rest of us are all married, and he hasn’t even gotten started.”
They all chuckled again, and Alex couldn’t help thinking of the woman in Noah’s front office who didn’t seem to have any respect for Noah’s marital status, but he didn’t bring that up.
“Well, if things progress and we start dating seriously, I’ll be sure to introduce you,” Alex said, reaching out and shaking Noah’s hand again. “Good to see you buddy. We’re going to head out.”
“It was nice to meet you, folks.” Noah stood again, all smiles and welcoming, his politician mask back in place. “Welcome to the community.”
“Thank you, Mayor Adlin. It was nice to meet you as well.” They all shook hands again, and Alex led Joshua and Amber out of his office, stopping by Cheryl’s desk for more introductions. Alex fought the urge to scowl at Noah’s secretary before leading his new friends out the door.