Definitely NOT Monica

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Chapter Fifteen

Ellen Stuart

Hello everyone, how has the rest of your week been? Jen, are we still on for this weekend? I could come over tomorrow (Saturday) morning?

Jenny read the message on her mobile, and frowned. I thought she’d forgotten. How am I going to get out of this? Contagious disease? No, too convenient. Death in the family? No, that’s going too far, I’d never be able to keep up the lie. While she was busy thinking up excuses, another message popped up.

Phil Sampson

Wot u guys up 2?

My wk gr8, ran 12 ks yest. 12!! Amzing! Spoke 2 my boss ths morn, he rckns I’ll ace the fitness test in a cple of wks. Yahoooo

Jenny smiled to herself, and typed out a response.

Jenny Sullivan

Awesome Phil! That’s great news.

Ellen - um, I guess. Can’t hurt right? 10am at my place?

Ellen Stuart

That is great Jen. It definitely can’t hurt, and could be really fun???

Phil, Jen is going to try online dating… I’m going to help her create a profile this weekend. I’m going to help her get a boyfriend if it’s the last thing I do!

Jenny felt her cheeks burn with embarrassment, wishing for the millionth time that she didn’t blurt out that stupid goal at their first meeting. How could she have known that the group would make it their mission. She wracked her brains trying to think of a believable alternative. Touch someone’s hand without disinfectant maybe? Give my parents a hug? Walk into a room full of strangers without wanting to shout about boobs at the top of my voice?

Phil Sampson

Oh, well b careful Jen. Some weirdos out there!

Anthony Maber

Sorry to interrupt, but aren’t we the weirdos Phil?

Jenny laughed out loud, and waited for the next response. She was still waiting when her landline rang.

‘Hello? Jenny speaking.’

‘Jen, it’s me.’ Amber’s voice, she sounded weird.

‘Ams, how are you? It’s been ages!’

‘Um, I’m okay. Sort of. Well, no I’m not really. Never mind me, how are you?’

‘Ams! What’s wrong? What’s happened?’

There was a deep sigh on the other end of the line. ‘It’s Jack.’

‘Jack, your online guy?’ Jenny paused. ‘What’s he done? Are you okay?’

’Well, no - he hasn’t really done anything.’

‘Spill Amber, right now!’

‘Okay,’ Amber sighed again, ‘so, I think I’m in love with him.’

‘Whaaaaat?’ Jenny nearly screamed down the phone, and then collapsed in giggles. ‘Jeeezus Ams, for a minute there I thought you were going to tell me he’d been beating you or you’d caught him sniffing your undies or something.’

Amber started laughing down the phone too. ‘Sorry, that was so melodramatic. It’s just, you know me Jen. I’ve never been in love before. Well, not since Sammy back in high school. I’m besotted, I can’t stop thinking about him. It’s like I’m obsessed. I feel like I’m going crazy.’

Jenny laughed again. ‘Ams, that’s awesome, I’m delighted for you!’

‘Yeah, well, anyway - I’d like you to meet him.’

Jenny fell silent on the other end of the line. ‘Are you sure? It won’t put him off you or something to meet your crazy friend?’

‘If it did he wouldn’t be worth bothering about! Honestly Jen, I’ve told him all about you…’

‘Er, what do you mean ALL about me? Like, everything?’

’Okay, so I didn’t tell him about the incident and I didn’t tell him you clean the toilet in the nude and I didn’t tell him you always want to shout crazy stuff at inappropriate times,’ Amber chuckled, ‘but I did tell him about the other stuff.’

‘Right, the other stuff.’ Jenny took a deep breath, ‘what did he say?’

‘He was really cool about it, said his Dad suffers from some kind of germ phobia so he’s used to it. And, um,’ Amber took a deep breath, ‘he also said he has a friend he’d like you to meet. He thinks you guys would get on really well.’

‘Oh no, oh no you didn’t!’ Jenny gasped. ‘Please tell me you didn’t set me up on a blind date?’

‘Um, no.’

Jenny let out a woosh of breath. ‘Thank God for that!’

’Well, it’s not a blind date exactly. I said we’d go on a double date.’

‘Ams, are you for real?’ Jenny looked out her kitchen window, at the darkening sky. ‘Do people actually even do double dates? Why would you think I would even consider it?’

‘I don’t know, I just thought…’ Amber hesitated. ‘I just thought it might be fun, and I would be there to support you, and we haven’t ever done anything like that together. And you’ve been doing so well since you started your support group, making friends and dating and stuff I never thought you’d do. I kinda thought you might be up for it?’

Still looking out her window, Jenny suddenly caught a glimpse of her reflection in the spotless glass. There was definitely something a little bit different about her. Am I taller somehow? She made a split second decision.

‘Okay, I’ll do it.’

Amber let out an excited squeak. ‘Wow, fantastic! I really wasn’t sure how that would go. I’ll tell Jack. He’ll have to arrange it with his friend, I’m not sure when it will be but I’ll let you know.’

‘Okay, fine. I hope I don’t regret this Ams.’

‘You won’t hun. I promise. What’s your plan for the rest of the weekend? Family torture on Sunday?’

‘Yeah, the usual.’

‘Well, good luck. Better go, Jack’s waiting. Love ya.’

‘Bye Ams, love you too.’

Jenny hung up and shook her head. What is going on with me lately? Speed dating, online dating, double dating. She looked over at the photo of herself and Bridgette on her fridge. I’m turning into my sister! God, I hope not. She opened the fridge door, and surveyed the contents. A juice isn’t going to cut it tonight, I need wine. Another trip to the liquor store?

Nodding to herself, Jenny was about to walk to her front door when she had a thought. She grabbed some bread out of the bread bin, and some salad ingredients from her fridge, and quickly made a salad sandwich. Wrapping it carefully, she put it into a separate plastic bag and then placed it in her handbag. Putting on her jacket and boots, she opened her door and walked out.

I’m going to shut this door and not even disinfect my hands, she thought to herself. She looked at the door handle she had just shut and locked, and at the keys in her hand. I’m not going to disinfect my hands, I’m a normal person. It doesn’t matter that door handles are the most common harbourers of germs and bacteria. I’m a normal person, I’m not going to disinfect my hands. I am definitely not… Ah, fuck it anyway. Jenny took the bottle of disinfectant from her bag and sprayed both the doorknob and her hands liberally, sighing with relief.

Arriving at Cheep Liquor, Jenny was amazed to find that she barely felt nervous at all. In fact, she felt excited. Excited to be doing something normal, on her own, outside of her comfort zone. Well done me, she thought as she walked towards the front door. Just then, a voice called out to her.

‘Hey, lady?’

It was the scruffy old homeless man, who smelt like dog poo and petrol. Except today, as he walked closer, Jenny caught the unmistakable smell of vomit as well. She coughed, and tried not to gag.

‘Got any ciggies?’ he asked her hopefully.

‘No, not today.’ Jenny looked at his feet and noticed he had no shoes. He must be frozen!

He frowned, and was about to walk away when Jenny spoke up. ‘I, er, I made you this sandwich. You know, in case you were hungry or something.’

Jenny held the wrapped sandwich out, and the old man looked at her suspiciously. ‘What’s it got in it?’

‘Salad. Cheese.’ Jenny mumbled, still holding it out. ‘It’s on Harvest Grain bread.’ Why did I say that? Like he gives a shit what bread it’s on.

‘Got tomato in it? I hate tomato.’ He still hadn’t taken the sandwich from her.

Jenny smiled. ‘No. I hate tomato too.’

The old man smiled back at her, and Jenny tried not to look at his yellow teeth. He shuffled closer.

‘You going to throw it on the ground?’

Jenny blushed. ‘I’m really sorry about that. I’ve got some, er, peculiar issues.’

‘Don’t we all,’ he nodded at her, and then reached out to take the sandwich. ‘Thanks.’

‘You’re welcome,’ Jenny said, pleased that none of her fingers had touched any of his. Can germs jump across plastic bags? I’ll google it later. ‘By the way,’ she asked, before she turned to walk away, ‘what’s your name?’

He looked surprised. ‘Neil.’

‘It’s nice to meet you Neil. I mean, officially. I’m Jenny.’

‘It’s nice to meet you too, Jenny.’

Jenny nodded, and turned away.

An hour later, Jenny was sitting at home drinking a large glass of pinot noir. She had decided to branch out and go for a red wine this time. Asking the young guy with the open sore on his neck for advice, she had been tempted to tell him his sore finally looked like it was healing, except she wasn’t sure he’d appreciate her mentioning it. So she just accepted his red wine suggestion, paid the big hairy guy at the counter (who complimented her on her boots) and went on her merry way.

And now, here she was, sitting on her couch watching the new series of The Bachelor, drinking red wine. Alcohol and reality TV… I am very nearly frickin’ normal, Jenny thought to herself happily. Picking up her wine glass to take a sip, she noticed a drip had landed on the coffee table. I’m so normal I’m going to leave that drip right where it is. Yep, leaving that drip…That drip of red wine has no power over me. That drip of red wine which might be staining my beautiful coffee table has absolutely no power over me. I am ignoring it, I am watching The Bachelor and I do not care that there is a red wine drip staining my coffee table…

‘Ah, crap it to hell anyway!’ Jenny said aloud, getting off the couch to fetch a cloth from the kitchen. Having wiped the drip, and then rinsed and returned the cloth to it’s holder in the sink, Jenny sighed with relief and settled back down on the couch. Yep, absolutely definitely not nearly frickin’ normal.

The next morning, Jenny was writing a press release for a client when her buzzer rang. She checked her watch. A few minutes after 10am. Far out, where has the time gone this morning? She walked over to push the intercom button.

‘Is that you Ellen?’

‘Yes, it’s me.’

Jenny pushed the button to unlock the security door downstairs. ‘Come on up.’

Walking back to the kitchen to switch on her kettle, Jenny marvelled at how much more relaxed she felt having Ellen come to visit. This time a few months ago I was having heart palpitations at the thought of having her over. And now I’ve barely got a mouthful of bile…

The doorbell to her apartment rang. Jenny wandered over, and opened it. ‘Morning, come in.’ Jenny turned and started walking towards the kitchen. ‘Coffee?’

‘Yes PLEASE,’ Ellen said, hanging her coat on one of the hooks by the door and taking off her shoes. ‘Can you make it a big one?’

Jenny laughed and turned to watch as Ellen grabbed the bottle of disinfectant from the side table and sprayed her hands. Ellen looked up. ‘Doesn’t feel quite so nerve wracking this time huh? Coming over for coffee I mean.’

‘I know,’ Jenny said as she poured boiling water into two mugs. ‘I was just thinking the same thing when you rang the buzzer.’

‘Maybe you could come to my house next time?’ Ellen asked, as she walked to the kitchen bar and sat down. Jenny noticed that Ellen had remembered which stool to sit on, and smiled with relief that her new friend was so conscientious. Even Bridgette still sat on the wrong stool occasionally, but Jenny suspected that was probably on purpose rather than a slip of memory.

‘Um, yeah, maybe. I guess.’ Jenny looked at Ellen as she handed her one of the coffee mugs. ‘I’d be sick with nerves, but I think I could do that.’

Ellen smiled warmly. ’Great, I’ll have you next time. I mean, I’ll have you over. Not have you…obviously.’ She took a long sip of coffee. ‘So, have you spoken to Petra yet?’

‘I sent her a private message, asking if she was okay. She didn’t reply though.’

‘Poor thing,’ Ellen shook her head. ‘What a disaster. Maybe we should see if she wants to join us next time?’

Jenny looked at her in surprise. ‘I thought you found her a bit scary?’

‘I do, but doesn’t everyone?’ Ellen took another sip of coffee. ‘Funnily enough, Petra’s kind of grown on me. The whole group has, actually. Even that brat Suzanne!’

Jenny laughed. ‘I know what you mean.’

After a few minutes chatting, Ellen’s face grew serious. ‘Right, I think we should get started on your profile.’

Jenny grimaced. ‘I don’t know, it seems kind of, forced, or something. Mind you, my best friend met her new boyfriend online, and she just told me she’s in love with him!’

‘Wow, that’s cool. There you go then, it’s the way of the future.’

‘Maybe. She also said he wants to meet me, and we’re going to go on a double date with a friend of his.’

Ellen whistled. ‘Holy smokes, that’s brilliant!’

‘It’s terrifying. What if I hate his friend? It’ll be so awkward.’ Jenny shook her head dramatically. ’More to the point, what if he hates me?’

‘As if,’ Ellen snorted. ‘A beautiful girl like you?’

Jenny blushed. ‘Er, not beautiful, by any stretch. Anyway,’ she quickly changed the subject, ‘what website am I signing up to? Desperados dot com?’

‘Well, I’ve got a few ideas. Have you ever heard of Tinder?’

‘Is that the meat market one, where everyone walks around trying to find someone in their vicinity to have sex with?’

Ellen laughed, and then coughed self-consciously. ’Okay, so some people, not necessarily anyone in this room, might do that. But you don’t have to! It’s an online dating app.’

Jenny shrugged. ‘Okay, well, let’s have a look at it then. How do I get a profile?’

‘So, Tinder will find your location using GPS, then it’ll use your Facebook info to create your profile. It only shows your first name and age, and any photos you choose. And we can enter a bit of info about you, a tag line or something like that, in the bio section.’

‘I must be crazy, but let’s do it.’

Half an hour and much laughter later, Jenny had a Tinder profile set up on her mobile. She didn’t have any recent photos, so Ellen had taken one of her at the kitchen bench, insisting that she was photogenic enough to go without make-up. They had spent quite a bit of time deliberating on her bio information, settling for something short and snappy:

I’m a happy n’ positive 30-something, a little on the quirky side, I work for myself and I make a mean smoothie…looking for fun or friendship, with a guy who takes personal hygiene seriously. How about you?

‘So, what now?’ Jenny asked, when her profile was up and running. ‘What happens next? How does it work?’

‘Right, Tinder will find any potential matches near you, and we’ve specified twenty five to forty years old, and if they look ok, you just swipe your screen right to like them. If they’re creeps, swipe left to pass. If you both like each other, then it’s a match and you can start messaging. Make sense?’

‘Er, yeah, I guess. Clear as mud…’

Ellen laughed. ‘Right, well, I’d better get going. I’ve got to meet a client this afternoon.’

Jenny raised her eyebrows, and Ellen rolled her eyes in return. ‘This is an actual client. I promise!’

‘Okay, okay. If you say so. Thanks heaps for helping me Ellen.’

‘No worries. I bet you’ll have tonnes of guys contacting you.’ Ellen walked to the front door and started putting on her coat and boots. ‘Have you got another one of those awful family dinners tomorrow night?’

’Yep, ‘fraid so. The torture never ends…’

Ellen smiled sympathetically. ‘Well, good luck! See you at the next meeting. And don’t forget to let me know how you get on.’

Jenny promised she would, and shut the door behind Ellen. Tinder? Me? Dear God. I could probably ask Bridgette for advice I suppose, I bet she’s using it. She shook her head violently. Ugh, no way am I telling her.

Switching her mobile to silent, Jenny wandered into her office. May as well do a bit more work before I finish for the day.

The next evening’s family dinner loomed far too quickly for Jenny’s liking, and she sat in her car outside her parent’s house for a good five minutes before she worked up the energy to switch off the engine. She could feel her mother’s eyes watching her, from behind the twitching curtain, as she shut her car door and dragged her heels up the driveway. Bridgette was nowhere to be seen, and Jenny took a quick glance up and down the street before raising her hand to knock on her parents’ front door. Before her hand had made contact with the wood, the door swung open from the inside.

‘Jenny!’ Her mother admonished, hands firmly on hips. ‘What are you doing loitering about in your car? The neighbours will talk.’

Jenny rolled her eyes. ‘Hi mum. Nice to see you too.’

Jenny walked past her mother, as Ona shut the door and followed her. ‘Don’t you get fresh with me young lady. You’re already late as it is.’

‘Yeah, well,’ Jenny stopped and turned around, ‘where’s Bridge?’

‘Your sister is on her way, she had to work the night shift so she’s been sleeping today.’

Yeah, I know exactly what kind of night shift she’s been working, Jenny thought to herself. Walking into the lounge, Jenny’s father was in his usual position in front of the TV.

‘Hi, Dad.’

‘Hi Mon… er, Jennifer. Oh, er, Jenny.’ Trevor briefly drew his eyes away from the screen to look at her. ‘How are you sweetheart?’

‘Good. Got a few new clients on board this week.’

‘Did you really? Uh huh.’ Trevor was facing the TV again, and Jenny shrugged her shoulders.

‘Right, good chat. I’ll go see if mum needs any help.’

‘You do that. I’ll be out in a few minutes, as soon as this replay’s over.’

Walking into the kitchen, Jenny could smell a chicken casserole cooking away in the oven. ‘Smells good Mum. Chicken?’

Ona smiled, ‘that’s right. Cacciatore. Your sister’s favourite.’ Ona took a wine glass down from the cupboard. ‘White or red?’

‘Um, what’s the red? If it’s pinot noir, I’ll take a red.’

Ona looked suitably impressed. ‘Well, I never. My daughter’s become a wine connoisseur.’ She turned towards the kitchen door, and yelled through to the lounge. ‘Trev? TREV?’

‘WHAT?’ Came her father’s voice from down the hall.

‘Your daughter’s having a red wine tonight!’

‘I’ll be damned,’ Trevor muttered, before they distinctly heard the TV volume turned up a few notches.

Jenny blushed, and gingerly took the offered glass from Ona’s hand to the sink where she began washing it. ‘I’m hardly a connoisseur, just trying a few things is all.’

Ona frowned as she watched Jenny clean her glass. ‘My glasses are NOT dirty,’ she said tightly, before the sound of knocking on the front door disturbed her and she smiled widely. ‘That’ll be your sister. Can you get the door and I’ll finish setting the table?’

Jenny nodded and walked down the hallway. Using a tissue from a box in her mother’s hallway, she turned the handle and let her sister in.

‘Brrr, it’s colder than a nun’s vagina out there,’ Bridgette said as she walked in and slammed the door behind her. ‘Hi Mon, what’s new?’

‘Um, that’s not my name Bridge. Anyway, I’m actually good, I’ve just been…’

‘So,’ Bridgette interrupted her, ‘did Mum tell you I was working the night shift last night?’

Jenny nodded dutifully. Bridgette glanced over Jenny’s shoulder to make sure their parents weren’t coming down the hallway. ’Well, it wasn’t the actual night shift, if you know what I mean?’ She winked at Jenny. ‘More like a sex-a-thon. With a nurse!’

Jenny raised her eyebrows, and her jaw dropped open.

Bridgette tut-tutted, as if Jenny was a complete moron. ‘Not a female nurse you nutter, I’m not a lezzer like you. A male nurse. He’s new in our department. And he’s dreeeeamy.’

‘What’s that dear?’ Ona asked, coming down the hall to interrupt her two daughters.

Bridgette rolled her eyes at Jenny, and then turned to her mother to give her a kiss. ’Nothing mum, just telling Jenny about work last night. It was a long night. And hard. Really hard.’

Jenny stifled a giggle, and Ona turned to walk back towards the kitchen. ‘We’re having your favourite tonight, dear,’ she called back over her departing shoulder.

‘Steak?’ Bridgette asked hopefully, walking in the other direction towards the lounge.

‘We should be so lucky Bridge,’ Trevor replied, as Bridgette sat down on the side of his chair and threw an arm around his shoulders. ’How are you pet?”

Bridgette gave him a big kiss, and he turned to give her his full attention. ‘Long night last night was it?’

Jenny shook her head, and went into the kitchen to get her red wine.

Ten minutes later, and Ona had herded the family to the table to eat dinner. As Ona served up the casserole, Jenny briefly tried to update her family on her meetings and how much better she felt she was doing. For a short while she felt she had their attention, but as usual she was interrupted by Bridgette who monopolised the conversation. I don’t know why I even bother speaking, she thought to herself in frustration, and I don’t know why they even want me here at all. Sitting back in her chair, Jenny felt her blood boil. Who are these people? They don’t give a shit who I am and what happens to me, why should I even turn up to these bloody awful dinners? I should just pick up my plate and smash it against the wall. That’d get their attention.

She was so busy being angry, Jenny missed the beep on her mobile from an incoming message.

‘Mon? Hello? Did you hear your phone?’ Jenny blinked and looked around the table, her family were all looking at her questioningly.

‘I said,’ Bridgette repeated slowly, ‘Did. You. Hear. Your. Phone?’

Jenny shook her head. ‘No. Anyway, I can look at it later.’

Bridgette eyed her curiously across the table. ‘Getting messages at night now are we? Got a man on the scene maybe? Having some plastic-wrapped germ-a-phobe sexy time are you?’ Bridgette laughed loudly, as if she’d told the funniest joke in the world, and both of Jenny’s parents attempted unsuccessfully to stifle their smiles. Jenny’s mother recovered her composure first.

‘Bridgette, that’s enough. We don’t need that sort of talk at the dinner table.’ She turned to Jenny. ‘You can look at your message if you want darling. Who is it, do you think?’

Jenny sighed. ‘No, I don’t need to look at it now. I’ll look at it later. Probably something to do with work.’

As the rest of her family turned back to their dinner, Jenny wondered to herself who might be messaging her. Could be one of our group maybe. She was actually dying to check her mobile and see who it was, but there was no way she was going to admit this to her family.

Bridgette suddenly stood up. ‘Just going to the dunny,’ she announced.

‘Bridgette! That’s an awful word,’ Ona said disapprovingly.

’Sorry mother, I’m just going to the lavatory.’ Bridgette rolled her eyes, and started to walk around the table.

By the time Jenny realised that Bridgette was behind her, it was too late to stop her from grabbing the handbag which was hanging on the back of her chair. Bridgette whisked it off the back of the chair, reaching inside to grab Jenny’s mobile out of it before running back around to the other side of the table.

Jenny winced at the thought of Bridgette’s dirty hand inside her handbag and how long it was going to take her to sterilise it completely, and glared at her angrily across the table.

‘Give that back, Bridge.’

’I will, I will. After I’ve checked who your message was from.’

‘Now Bridgette,’ Ona began, ‘don’t be so childish. Give your sister’s phone back to her.’ She wasn’t entirely convincing, and Jenny knew she was also dying to find out who the message was from.

Bridgette scanned Jenny’s mobile, and let out a gasp. ‘Oh. My. God. Mum, you will never guess, not in a million years!’

Jenny could see her mother fighting the urge to guess.

‘Jenny Sullivan. You dirty bitch!’ Bridgette looked at her sister in disbelief, and then at her parents. ‘Jenny’s on Tinder! This message is from some guy who wants to meet her!’

Jenny curled her toes in embarrassment, and felt her cheeks flaming. ‘Bridge, stop, give it back please.’

’No fucking way, this is awesome.’

Jenny felt her eyes fill with tears, as her sister cackled with laughter.

‘Bridgette!’ Trevor let out a roar, and the whole family turned to him in surprise. ‘Give that phone back to your sister RIGHT NOW!’

Bridgette blinked, clearly shocked at her father’s outburst. ‘Fine. For fuck’s sake, it was just a joke.’

Bridgette tossed Jenny’s mobile across the table, and smirked as she saw Jenny looking at it.

‘What’s the matter Monica? Can’t pick it up? Afraid you’ll catch my germs?’

Jenny closed her eyes for a few seconds and took a deep breath. Enough is fucking enough. She stood up slowly and carefully, taking a disinfectant wipe from a packet in her pocket to wipe both her mobile and the handles of her handbag. When satisfied she looked at both of her parents, and then at her sister.

‘Firstly, my name IS NOT MONICA. Secondly, I’m not afraid I’ll catch your germs Bridge, I’m afraid I’ll catch your fucking personality. And thirdly, I’ve had enough of this shit and you can all GO FUCK YOURSELVES.’

Jenny heard their gasps, but didn’t bother to stay and watch the looks on their faces. She turned on her heel and stormed out of the dining room and down the hallway to the front door. She heard the sound of chairs being scrapped back, but by the time her parents had followed her out she was already gunning her engine and driving down the street.

As soon as she had driven a respectable distance, she pulled the car over and turned off her engine. She sat for a full minute concentrating on her breathing, which was shallow and ragged. Holy shitballs! She checked her reflection in the mirror. What did I just do? Oh my God, that was AWESOME. Haha, hear me roar bi-arches! Jenny smiled at herself, and started her car again. Ams is going to flip when she hears about this. And my group, oh my God I can’t wait to tell my group. Phil’s going to be so stoked…

Jenny caught herself. Phil? Why did I think of Phil? Shrugging, she reached over and turned on her radio. Loud. This was a trip that needed a soundtrack. Cry Me a River? No, that won’t do. She changed the radio channel to Classic Hits. The familiar sound of the Beach Boys filled her car.

‘Good, good, good, good vibrations,’ Jenny sang along, tapping her fingers on her steering wheel. Singing along and thinking about her outburst, Jenny remembered that she hadn’t yet checked who her message was from.

Pulling over to the side of the road once more, she turned down the radio and took her mobile out of her bag. Bridgette was right, it was a message from someone on Tinder. There was also a photo. Of him. Sitting on the toilet. And he was smoking a cigarette. There was no toilet paper on the roll. He had an ashtray at his feet.

Jenny gagged involuntarily, and shook her head slowly in disbelief. Hell no! She thought, as she swiped his picture to the right, before realising her mistake. Shit, shit, shit! She desperately tried to swipe him left, but as far as she could tell it was too late.

She had made her first Tinder match.

Tinder was not off to a good start.

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