CHAPTER ONE - A NIGHT TO FORGET
2 YEARS AGO
Light streaming through the floor to ceiling windows wakes me up from my drunken sleep. I look around the foreign room, trying to get my bearings. This is definitely not my hotel room. This room or should I say penthouse is large and lavish, with brilliant white walls, leather couches, and a luxurious king size bed that feels like I'm lying on a cloud. I look to my right and cover my mouth in shock.
In the bed beside me lays a man, a completely naked man saved only from the sheet covering his butt as he lays on his stomach. A man, I have never seen before in my life. I wrack my brain trying to piece together the events of last night while quietly cursing my drunken alter ego for drinking her weight in tequila. My memory coming up short I do the only thing I can do in this situation. Run.
I quietly sneak out of bed and gather my clothes that are strewn across the floor. As I quickly put my clothes on, I can't help but peak at my bed mate. This is definitely not a coyote ugly moment. This man is perhaps the most beautiful, sexy specimen I have ever seen. Well, what I can see of him.
His hair is dark and shoulders are broad, his back muscular down to what appears to be a damn tight ass under the bed sheet. I'm tempted to lift the sheet and have a look, but when he moves slightly in his sleep I realize I'm running out of time.
I quickly grab my shoes and sneak quietly out the door. As I softly shut the door, I turn and bolt to the elevator. The doors open and I slink inside, hitting the 3rd floor and waiting impatiently for the doors to close while praying he doesn't wake up and come after me. They shut and I collapse back into the wall breathing a sigh of relief.
The elevator whisks me down to the 3rd floor and I do the walk of shame to my room. I use my swipe from my clutch to open the door and stumble inside. Lucy and Tammy look up at me as I enter. I know I must look like hell.
“Where were you?” Tammy asks as she looks me over. Her dark blonde hair is knotted, her face almost green, hinting at the hangover she must be feeling. I hesitate, not sure how to answer that as I have no idea what happened last night.
“In a penthouse suite...” I say quietly. Tammy and Lucy look at each other and back to me. They honestly both look as bad as I feel...
“What?” Lucy asks. I drop my shoes and clutch on the floor and walk over to the bed. Sitting down on the edge of the bed I put my head in my hands.
“I honestly.... I don't know what happened.... one minute I'm drinking with you girls.... the next thing I'm waking up naked in the penthouse suite with a stranger...” I say with a whine. Oh my god, how could I be so stupid? I don't even know who it was... Hell I don't even know if we used protection. I could get an STD! Or pregnant! I know I'm beginning to panic as the thoughts of what could have happened whirl through my mind. Tammy and Lucy burst out laughing behind me. “It's not funny” I growl. Ok... from there perspective maybe it is a little funny. But from mine? Nope. Not. One. Bit.
“I guess we won the bet after all...” Lucy says with a smirk. I look down at the fake Harry Windsor set on my left hand. I'd bought it yesterday to prove a point to the girls. That the only reason I kept getting hit on was because I wasn't engaged like them.
“What kind of guy sleeps with a married woman?” I ask, wondering why the hell someone would hit on someone wearing wedding rings.
“What kind of married woman sleeps with a stranger?” Tammy laughs. Well she has me there. Even though I know I'm not married I doubt he would have known that... unless I told him. I'm just as much to blame as he is. I put my head in my hands and groan. Lucy crawls over the bed and rubs my back. It feels nice, this is what I need, comfort.
“Hey... don't worry about it. You're young and you had fun. Plus now you have a good Vegas story.” She says, obviously trying to cheer me up.
“Yeah... one I don't remember.” I mumble. I must remember something? Anything about the hot stranger I woke up next to.
“Wait... is that a hickey on your neck?” Tammy says, pulling me from my thoughts. I automatically blush. I haven't looked in the mirror this morning so I wouldn't have a clue.
“It has teeth marks!” Lucy exclaims. Tammy laughs and I cover the hickey with my hand and jump up. Flashes of last night enter my mind, his hands on my skin, his mouth and obviously teeth all over my body. I'm getting hot just thinking about it.
“I'm going to have a shower.” I tell them. A cold one. I turn to walk towards the bathroom.
“Well he must have been huge.” Tammy says. I stop and look back at Tammy, unsure how she could possibly know that. “You're walking funny.” She says. They both burst into a fit of laughter as I flip them off and head to the bathroom. I can't help but look at my gait. I'm not walking funny at all. Bitches! Although I won't lie, I am a little sore. The good sore.
I lock the bathroom door and stand in front of the mirror. I do look like absolute hell. My hair is a complete mess of matted blonde strands. My mascara is smudged and my lips are swollen. The hickey on my neck is a complete eyesore. Lucy was right... it does have teeth marks. I'm quietly grateful that the stranger didn't see me like this.
I turn on the shower and strip out of my clothes. I slip the fake rings off of my hand and put them into my makeup bag. They are too pretty to throw away, even if they are fake. I get in the shower and let the water flow over me, hoping to wash off whatever sins I committed last night.
When I get out of the shower the girls had ordered room service for breakfast. We eat our breakfast and sip our much needed coffee in silence. Straight after breakfast we pack our things and check out of the hotel. Tammy drives us in the rental car to LA. I try to figure out the events of last night, find out what the girls remember and piece it together. But it's no use. They remember about as much as me. Damn tequila. I try to push it out of my head and chalk it up to a night I will never know about.
Liam rolls off of me breathless and sweaty. “That was fucking fantastic babe.” He says, breathless. I give him my killer smile.
“Yeah... it was.... great...” I say, keeping the smile on my face. But it wasn't great. It's never great. In the 8 months I have been dating Liam, I have not once had an orgasm with him. But he tries, he really does and I usually feel bad that I'm not even close that I end up faking it.
“Well, goodnight babe.” He says as he rolls over so his back is to me.
“Yeah... night.” I say with a sigh. Another bedroom thing he doesn't do. Snuggle. I sigh and get up, heading to the bathroom to clean up. Don't get me wrong, outside of the bedroom Liam is perfect, he's so sweet and attentive. And he loves me. And I... well I like him. A lot.
I clean myself up and head back to bed. My mind is full of the usual thoughts that plague me when I'm trying to go to sleep. What am I doing with my life? How am I only 26 years old and my life has already become the mundane? Eventually sleep takes over and I welcome the darkness.
Liam and I have just finished breakfast and I'm cleaning up the dishes. It's become routine for when we spend the night together, I cook breakfast and clean up while he gets ready for work or reads the newspaper on his phone.
“What are your plans for today?” he asks from behind me. I turn around and smile at him, taking in the sight of him sitting at the table, looking at his phone. The butterflies I felt when I first met him are gone. But that's normal right? We've been together for 8 months, surely they disappear once you know the person well.
“I'm working the lunch shift and then catching up for drinks with the girls tonight.” I tell him. He nods and gets up from the table, coming over he kisses my cheek.
“Ok, well I'll see you tomorrow then, I better get to work.” He tells me. I smile and he grabs his things and leaves. I finish cleaning up the kitchen then take a shower, letting off the frustrations I had from last night. I settle on the couch with a book until I need to get ready for work, letting the words take me to a place of romance, true love and adventure. 3 things I doubt I'll ever have.
The lunch shift at the small cafe I work at as a waitress goes by quickly. It always does as people get their overpriced focaccias and salads as they take their lunch breaks, talking about their work and weekend plans. I always get a tinge of jealousy when they talk about their latest achievements or the conquests they had the previous weekend. I'm 26 and still have no idea what I want to do with my life.
I finish work, go home and change and head out to meet the girls. Our monthly catch ups are what I look forward to the most lately. Although it's been a long time since we have headed to a pub together, usually choosing a child friendly place where their kids can play. I dress is something comfortable but sexy, wanting to feel good and head out to meet the girls. The pub is busy, being a Friday night everyone is out for the end of week drinks but we manage to score a table and have it filled with drinks so we don't have to tackle the crowded bar too often.
“I'm so happy to have a kid free night! It's been too long!” Lucy exclaims. Despite having a now almost 5 year old and a 2 year old at home, she still looks incredible. Her long brown hair hang straight down her back, her big brown eyes framed by luscious lashes. I’ve always been jealous of her natural beauty. Lucy is gorgeous inside and out. Tammy and Nicole nod in agreement.
“How are you doing Kate? How's Liam?” Tammy asks me. I shrug and swirl my cocktail with the straw.
“He's good.” I say. Tammy and Lucy share a look between them.
“Just good?” Nicole asks. I turn to Nicole and smile.
“Yeah, busy with work, the usual.” I say with a shrug. The girls are silent for a moment as we sip our drinks, it's Lucy who speaks first.
“Alright, I'll say it... Kate, why are you with him?” Lucy asks, staring me down. I look at Lucy taken aback by her question.
“What do you mean?” I ask. Tammy places her hand on mine, ever the motherly figure of our tightknit group.
“Don't get us wrong, he's a great guy and we do like him, it's just, you don't seem happy.” Tammy says.
“I'm not unhappy.” I say with a frown.
“It just seems like you're settling, that's all.” Lucy says. I shrug, not really liking where this conversation is going. They aren't wrong though, I am settling but can they blame me. All my friends have their shit together.
Lucy and Seb are happily married with two beautiful children, 4 year old Hayley and 2 year old Richard "Richie", or little Dick as my brother like to call him much to Lucy's horror. She's a successful author with two best sellers under her belt.
Tammy and Chris are married with the most gorgeous little girl, Elle, who is six months old. She manages a prestigious boutique and is constantly traveling to see up and coming designers.
Nicole and Brad are engaged, they have been for 2 years now and still haven't set a date. They have the gorgeous two year old Tommy and I wouldn't be surprised if Nicole announces she's knocked up soon.
And then there's me. 26 year old waitress who has never done a single interesting thing in her life. No adventures, no fascinating story or scandals. Just the boring good girl who is wandering aimlessly through life.
“I like him, I enjoy spending time with him. It's comfortable.” I tell them. All three nod, although I sense not actually impressed by my answer but they let it slide and the subject changes to their kids. I tune out, taking in the atmosphere of the bar and watching the loved up couples and random hook ups that take place. Neither of which are me. I've never really been a one night stand type of girl, preferring to be in a relationship over random hook ups, but maybe that's why my life is so boring? Maybe that's why I don't have any sordid stories of previous conquests. I entertain the idea of a quick fling but dismiss it immediately. I'm in a committed relationship. And maybe that's my destiny. To live a mediocre life, with mediocre sex and a mediocre love.