"They are amazing, Amy. The house looks amazing," Hope could hear Amanda saying as her voice moved closer. "The Campbell's keep our home looking incredible. They are worth every penny."
Hope smiled as she realized Mrs. Reyes was on her phone talking to a friend. She then placed the last of her supplies on her cart and began to push it out of the master bedroom.
Just before reaching the top of the stairs she looked down and saw Mrs. Reyes with her phone held to her ear and walking toward the living room. Hope's eyes then grew as a feeling of terror enveloped her.
She turned toward her cart, obscuring the front of her pants as she slid her hands down the front of them. She wanted to ensure she had put back on her panties from her earlier rendezvous with her husband and not left them to be found by Mrs. Reyes. She then breathed a sigh of relief as she stood and waited for her husband.
"Oh, wow, Amy..." Amanda continued on her phone with her friend, "...she even got out that coffee stain I was trying to hide in the living room when I repositioned the couch. I can't believe she even saw that!"
Hope giggled. She then heard the side door to the house close. Seconds later Ralph appeared and ascended the stairs to help her move the cleaning cart back downstairs.
Amanda emerged from the living room as they were moving toward the side entrance. "Here they are," Amanda said as she spotted Hope and Ralph. She then sped toward the Campbells as she wrapped up her phone conversation. "Hey, Amy, let me talk to them and I'll call you back."
Hope and Ralph slowed their pace and looked at one another as they neared the side entrance. They then stopped and turned toward Mrs. Reyes.
"Hey, I wanted to ask you two something," Mrs. Reyes said. "By the way... magnificent job on the house, as usual. Hope, how did you even see that stain underneath the couch? I was trying so hard to hide it and forgot to tell you about it."
"Umm... vacuuming," Hope said as Ralph's eyes bugged.
"Well, thank you for taking care of that for me. Everything looks great. And the outside as well," Mrs. Reyes said, turning to Ralph. "The yard and hedges look immaculate."
"My pleasure," Ralph said.
"I wanted to speak to you about something if you have a couple of minutes," Mrs. Reyes said, motioning for the two to join her in her den.
"Of course," Hope said as the two followed their employer.
"I have a friend, Amy Martin, whose regular cleaning crew is out of town," Mrs. Reyes said as they all took a seat. "She is having a rough time finding someone to clean her home. And I was just raving to her about what great work you two do for me here."
Hope shook her head. "I'm sorry, Mrs. Reyes, but our schedule is already pretty full."
"Are you sure you can't possibly squeeze her in? She is a close friend of mine and I promised her I would try and connect you two with her."
Hope looked at Mrs. Reyes for a few moments as she thought about their packed schedule. She then glanced at Ralph - who looked dubious - before reaching for her phone to access her digital calendar.
"Any time you could find for her would be great," Mrs. Reyes said. "She is a really good friend and I'd love to help her out. I told her how marvelous you all are."
Hope looked up from her phone and smiled at Mrs. Reyes. She then continued to scan her calendar, periodically shaking her head.
"If you could just meet with her?" Mrs. Reyes said. "Maybe you all could figure something out?"
Hope nodded. "Sure, Mrs. Reyes. We'll meet with her. Do you know what would be a good time for her?"
"Umm... what are you doing right now?"
Amy Martin's home was several streets away in the same neighborhood as the Reyes' house. The Campbell's had no evening plans, other than resting after they left Mrs. Reyes, so they didn't mind spending a little extra time to do their best client a favor.
Ralph and Hope pulled into the Martin's driveway and were immediately greeted by a smiling, waving Amy Martin standing in her front lawn.
Ralph parked at the front curb. He then grinned as he looked at Hope. "Remember when we were the ones wanting to make a good impression for our clients?"
Hope turned her head away from an approaching Mrs. Martin to conceal her giggle.
"As you can see..." Mrs. Martin said while walking the Campbell's through the hallway that connected the foyer to the den, "...our home is about the same size as Amanda's. She just raves about the work you two do. I have a crew of three that regularly clean for me but they are on an extended vacation."
Amy then stopped walking and turned toward the couple. "I know Amanda mentioned that you are already pretty booked, but it would be great if you could find any time in your schedule for me. I'm throwing a big party and I am desperate. I'd definitely make it worth your while."
After a few seconds Hope asked, "When are you having your party?"
"The day after tomorrow."
"Oh," Hope said. "So you need someone tomorrow."
"Yes," Amy said before biting bottom lip.
Hope looked at Ralph who signaled his displeasure before turning back to Mrs. Martin. "I'm sorry, Ma'am, but that's our only day off."
"Well, I'd be willing to double your fee."
"It's not an issue of money, Mrs. Martin..." Hope said.
"Look," Amy interrupted. "Tell me what it will take. I'm desperate here. This party is in a little more than 48 hours and it could be a huge boost to my husband's career."
Hope and Ralph glanced at one another as Mrs. Martin continued. "Plus I'm going out of town tomorrow and I need someone I can trust to be here without me or my husband here. With my cleaning crew gone I don't know anyone else."
Hope and Ralph glanced back at one another with wide eyes. Hope gave an obligatory smile as she looked back at Mrs. Reyes and nodded. "What time do you need us here tomorrow?"
Amy's face brightened. "Oh my god, you'll do it?"
"Yes, ma'am," Hope said.
As Amy gave Hope a huge hug, Hope and Ralph looked at each other... and gave one another a huge smile.
Amy Martin gave the Campbells the extra copy of keys to her home along with her security code. Mrs. Martin was leaving town that night and not returning until the morning of the party so Hope and Ralph were on their own time frame as far as when they would be cleaning the next day.