Lucas and I lay together in his bed wrapped up in each other’s arms, listening to music at a low volume, feeling the cool temperature of the air.
The entire vibe feels like magic.
Until he leans up and pulls something out of his bedside cabinet.
It’s a mini cocaine tray. He starts cutting up and dividing the white powder into lines. I gasp in shock. My heart starts to pound.
“What the hell are you doing?” I ask him.
“Relax. It’s just coke.”
“Just coke?” I ask, leaning away from him and starting to completely inch my way out of the bed.
“You’ve never tried it?” he asks.
“Oh yeah… that’s right. I forget you’re a small town youngster who hasn’t lived a life yet.”
“I’m sorry, babe. I wasn’t trying to hurt your feelings. Do you want to give this a try? This is a safe place to do it.”
“I’m really not interested.”
“You’re really missing out,” he says, taking a sniff.
I’m trying to be chill with this whole thing but it’s honestly just freaking me out more than anything else. Losing my mother at a young age has caused me to be hypervigilant about the concept of mortality and dying. I’ve always been taught to associate drugs with death. So it’s sort of like Lucas is manhandling death right in front of me and trying to encourage me to join in on it.
I retreat to his living room and sit on the couch with my arms crossed. I literally don’t even want to be in the same room as that stuff. I don’t care if he thinks I’m being immature.
Lucas follows me out to the couch and sits beside me trying to give me affection.
“You’ve lived a life I’m sure,” he whispers into my ear before kissing my neck. “I’m sorry for what I said."
“You should be. Don’t talk to me like that.”
“I won’t, baby. I’m sorry,” he says as he continues kissing on me.
“And don’t do that stuff around me. The drugs.” I tell him sternly. “I’m dead serious.”
“Okay, okay, okay. Your wish is my command,” he says, kissing down my chest and feeling me up with his hands. We go back into the bedroom where all evidence of illegal substances has once again been stowed away.
We wake up together in the morning before work. Lucas turns over on the bed to face me.
“Good morning,” he says with a smile.
“Good morning,” I reply, staring into his eyes.
I hate how perfectly handsome he is. Like… how was I possibly going to be able to hold my own against his charm? I resent how attracted to him I am. It would be easier not to fall into his temptation if he didn't look so perfect.
“You know what I was just thinking?” he asks.
“You should be modeling for Ashford Designs. You shouldn’t be hidden away behind the scenes where no one gets to see you. The world needs to see you. You’re too hot to be a behind-the-scenes type of chick.”
“Mary hired me to be a fashion consultant. Not a model.”
“So I’m the only one who gets to see this gorgeous face and this beautiful body of yours? Oh, plus your boy back home? That just seems… selfish.”
“A porn recruiter already tried to use a similar line like that on me when I first arrived in LA. Don’t even start, Lucas,” I say rolling my eyes.
“Not porn, New-Girl-Nora. Modeling. Classy Ashford Designs modeling.”
“I’m flattered you think so but my days trying to thrive based on my looks are over.”
“What do you mean?”
“I guess I never gave you a full detailed story about my beauty pageant days. I lost my most recent pageant to a girl who is now dating my ex-boyfriend. I have no interest in anything even remotely close to that lifestyle anymore. It hurt me way too much.”
“Hurt you that she started dating your ex?”
“Ew. No. Not that. It hurt me that I lost to someone else. I’m happy doing what I’m doing now for Ashford Designs. I just want to stay in my lane.”
“Alright. I get you. As long as you’re happy I support you.”
We shower and get dressed for work. Although we drive there together in his car, we walk into the building ten minutes apart to make sure no one notices we came together.
I know it wouldn’t be the end of the world for Mary or the rest of her staff to find out that I’m hooking up with Lucas but still... The sensations of guilt that I’m experiencing over what I’m doing behind Tony’s back are keeping me from wanting to expose myself any more than I already have.
The conflicting feelings I’m having about Lucas and Tony feel unbearable. I wasted years of my life not even noticing Tony despite how incredibly amazing he is. And now that I’m finally acknowledging who he is as a person, I am over here messing things up by getting emotionally involved with someone else. Not even just emotionally involved… Physically involved too! I’m seriously over here pushing every single boundary that I’m not supposed to be pushing. Does this make me a horrible person? It definitely feels like it.
I never dated anyone before my relationship with Doug. Dating Doug didn’t really prepare me for what real world dating was going to be like because dating Doug was like dating a little kid. He was so immature and small minded. We would argue over whether hotdogs should be eaten with ketchup or mustard.
The emotions I’m having towards Lucas and Tony are in a completely different realm. Not even slightly comparable. Which is why I don't know what to do.