Maybe money CAN buy happiness...

Hello.  I’m Mallory Green—an ironic last name once you learn my story.  I grew up in the foster system, so I’ve had a laundry list of surnames in my relatively short life.  Then I got married (a colossal mistake) and acquired yet another name I’m currently trying to rid myself of.

Green is supposed to be lucky—four-leaf clovers, the luck of the Irish… the literal color of money and prosperity.  But you couldn’t prove it by me.  I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t pinching pennies and dreading opening my mailbox full of overdue bills.  I’m in debt up to my unplucked eyebrows over a college education I couldn’t finish, a multi-level marketing business my ex convinced me was a good idea, a lemon car that hasn’t run since a month after I drove it off the lot, and vet bills for my inherited French bulldog Nessie, among other things.

As a result of my accumulated poor financial decisions, I’m working round the clock:  during the week, I’m a receptionist at a soulless office building, on the weekends I waitress, and most nights I pull the late shift at the GiddyUp GoMart.

To-date I’ve been unlucky in life, in love, and in fortune.

But that all changed the day my numbers came up—literally.

Can money buy happiness?  Friend, I’m SO ready to find out!

 

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The *FREE* LOTTERY GIRL serial began July 1 and runs through December 31.  Come back every day for a new episode that will display approximately 4am Eastern to 4am Eastern.  Join the FB Group for lively recaps and discussion about what might happen next in LOTTERY GIRL.  And please invite 10 reading friends to get in on the fun!    If you want to catch up or read ahead, 6 monthly novellas are available from Amazon that contain that month's episodes.  Enjoy!  

November 25, Wednesday

I sat with Buckley in the courtroom behind the table, waiting for the judge to emerge to render his verdict.  I could smell my attorney’s sweat—not a good sign.  Ryan sat behind us in the gallery, my sole supporter.

A few feet away sat Kerry Kline and Vance Decker with their attorney.  In the gallery behind them sat a smattering of other former coworkers, most of whom I recognized.  I understood why they’d all jumped on board the lawsuit—they had nothing to lose and everything to gain.

My energy was fading after long hours of testimony and cross-examining, and synching responses with previous depositions.  When the door to the judge’s chambers opened, my legs had gone to sleep.

“All rise,” the bailiff said.

I pushed to my feet shakily.

“Be seated,” the judge said.

I fell back into my seat.

“I’ve reviewed the transcripts of the depositions,” the judge said.  “And I’ve listened to the testimony about the conversation at the center of this case.  I’m sympathetic to both sides—sometimes we say things as utterances of whimsy and fantasy.  For this case, however, I considered the conversation in the context of the situation.”  The judge’s intense gaze swung to me.  “Since the conversation about what they would do if they won the lottery took place among coworkers who were participating in a lottery pool, I find the utterance of Ms. Green that she would share the lottery if she won to be a legal, binding contract.”

The bottom of my stomach fell out.  Buckley groaned.  The other side cheered.

“Silence!” the judge shouted, rapping his gavel.  “I’m not finished.  Continuing, Ms. Green didn’t say how she would share her winnings, so it was left up to me to decide what’s fair.  I find for the twenty-two plaintiffs to receive from the lottery ticket jackpot winnings, the amount of two  hundred fifty thousand dollars each.”  He rapped the gavel again.  “Case dismissed.”

“We’ll appeal,” Buckley said to me over the melee that erupted on the other side.

“No,” I said.  “No appeal.”

“But they just took five and a half million dollars of your money.”

“I want this to be over.”

He sighed, then conceded with a nod.  I turned around to see Ryan holding his head in his hands.

Let the fallout begin.  ~

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