Excerpt from Chapter 2
“Let’s find you a man before mine gets here to pick me up, shall we.”
“Okay, I think we go here to enter our search criteria. Wow, this is really customisable. It’s almost like ordering from a menu! Let’s see, I think I’ll place my order for men within a 40 kilometre radius who are non-smokers, stand over 5’11”, looking for a relationship, and are between the ages of 30 – no, 32 and 42. That should give us a few to choose from.”
I hit enter and it was then that I received the biggest shock of my dating life (and, believe me, there had been quite a few before that). The unexpected happened. My very own computer, in my very own office, in the comfort of my very own home presented me with a list of men, single men. These guys were online, on this site, looking, like I was, to connect with someone. They were looking for dating, relationships, and possibly even marriage. This list contained not just 10 men, not 20, not even 30 guys. It was bursting with a grand total of 337 men who were on this site, who met my criteria and who might be looking for someone just like me. Jackpot! Man, was I going to be busy.
“Holy guacamole. Does that say 337 matches?” Chloe blurted.
“Uh-huh. It most certainly does. I was a little skeptical but I want to thank you darling. For in one night you have introduced me to more men than all of my other friends combined have managed to do over my entire lifetime.”
Excerpt from Chapter 17
“So aren’t you bursting to know my news?”
“I thought the Mike relationship was the news.”
“Well what then? You’re not pregnant are you?”
I held up what was the end of my second glass of wine and said, “I sure as hell hope not!”
“Spill it girl.”
“I got fired.”
“What. No way. Are they mad? You did the work of three men. Oops, I mean people.”
“Yep. I’m unemployed. That’s the bad news. The good news is that I received almost a year’s salary as a lovely parting gift.”
“No way. Man, then you’re buying.”
So I told Roman the whole sordid soap opera story and as I told it, I felt detached. I was amazed at how I had been able to distance myself so far so fast. But I had.
“Think of it this way Kayte, it gives you so much more time to date.”
Another good point.
“So have you been getting many messages? I always wondered about the volume of messages women received versus men.”
“To be honest, no, not too many lately.”
“Well then, it might be time to invoke Roman’s Rule #7. While I don’t usually give away two of my online teachings in one sitting, I’ll make an exception for the unemployed gal.”
“Ah shucks. Thanks Wolf.”
“So you might be at the point where you need to refresh your profile. Kayte, just like in marketing, you gotta keep it new and interesting. Maybe just edit your opening line rather than re-doing your whole profile. Which is very good by the way – I had to read it. If you do this, you keep cycling your profile through with the other new ones. It’s a good practice because many people just choose to view the new ones, using that as their primary sort. So you want to be with the new profiles. It’s all about visibility babe.”
Again, he had a point.
“Thanks. I’ll do that. Even though I’ll probably run off next month and marry Mike. I’d dote on him hand and foot, a happy housewife, keeping a lovely home, greeting him at the door after a hard day’s work with a martini followed by a scrumptious dinner, full control of the remote and sexual favours every night. I could do this easily now that I have all this time on my hands.”
“You? Ya, right!”
We both laughed. Traditional 50’s housewife I was not and would never be. But, I knew that when I found the right man, I would probably embrace it more than others might think. No one needed to know that just yet.
Excerpt from Chapter 35
Dylan let out a short announcement bark. I glanced at my watch; it was Tommy time. I gave one last glance in the bedroom mirror. I was very pleased with the final result. My hair was full and curly. I had applied makeup with the detail and intricacy of a painter. The vision staring back from the mirror had dark, captivating and sultry eyes, cherry sun-kissed cheeks with a glow that extended across the top of my nose. It was punctuated by the shiniest and most luscious lips you could ever want to kiss. And the skin on my neck and chest – everywhere, for that matter – was so soft that it screamed to be caressed. I had massaged a half bottle of moisturiser into my entire body following my shower. For the final touch, I had just applied another dab to my hands.
The new top was paired with a clean straight-cut black and white print skirt that fell mid-shin and had a long slit reaching up to mid thigh exposing just enough well tanned leg. The skirt was one I had not been able to fit into for months so it added an extra air of confidence to the ensemble.
I drew in a long breath, threw back my shoulders, did the bat check then the tooth inspection (visions of Roger and his tooth refuse still haunted me), scanned the bedroom and bathroom to ensure I hadn’t left anything telling lying around.
The door bell rang again as I reached the top of the stairs. I could feel my heart beating hard in my chest, harder than during my run earlier that day. I didn’t think I’d be this nervous. All that was left between Tommy and me was for me to descend the stairway that led directly to the foyer. From the front door he could see halfway up the staircase so I had an opportunity to make a grand entrance. Hopefully, as I descended each step he’d be getting more and more excited, just as I was.
My heart had almost reached my mouth. I hesitated. Then, quelling my inner date critic I gathered my composure, set one foot in front of the other and began down the stairs. I took the next step, took a breath, the next step, another breath. My chest was heaving. I could feel my cheeks high on my face from my animated grin and I knew my eyes had to be sparkling with excitement. I could see Tommy’s frame filling the doorway from my perch. I was noticing his broad shoulders and full chest, giving him a good look over as I took the next step. The adrenalin was pumping. I was just about to welcome him into my home. Hopefully he’d greet me with a strong lingering hug.
I took another step closer to this sexy man who had captivated me for weeks now. My right foot hit hard rubber where carpet should have been, twisting to the right and throwing me off balance. The object rolled from beneath my foot and Dylan’s favourite chew toy, a black kong bounced randomly down the remaining five stairs. I grabbed for the handrail to steady myself and my newly moisturised hand found it then slid right off. In that instant I knew I was going down. My butt hit the stairs. Then it was my back’s turn, then my left shoulder blade. I slid down the remaining steps, twisting and pulling my skirt up around my waist, exposing both of my freshly shaven and well tanned legs. I landed in a thud onto Dylan’s bed that sat at the foot of the stairs. Given it was nothing more than a big material cushion that sat atop ceramic tile floor, both it and I then slid into my final resting place, knees pressed against the glass front screen door where Tommy stood watching every moment and taking in every excruciating detail.
I was mortified, but happy I had purchased new underwear.
I looked out the door and was staring directly at Tommy’s crotch. After a cursory inspection, I timidly raised my humiliated gaze up his chest to his face.
Tommy’s expression was a mix of shock, concern, helplessness and I think I detected a wee bit of laughter.
I was speechless. Thankfully he broke the ice. “Well I’ve had women fall for me before but none quite so enthusiastically. I’ll tell you what, I’ll definitely give you an 8.5 for artistic impression.”
I wanted to cry but I couldn’t quell the laughter that was erupting inside me. I knew one thing. This was not the impression I had planned on making, but I could sulk and make it worse or laugh and get on with the evening.