“Jill! Is Katy okay?” Sandy yelled into her cell phone.
“Katy’s okay. They’re keeping her overnight,” Jill said. “Where are you?”
“Funky Buddha. You wanna join us? I’m here with Tanesha and Heather. We’re hoping to find some fun.”
“Jilly, what’s wrong?” Sandy asked. “Wait, hang on. I’m going to go the sidewalk so I can hear you.”
Jill paced Jacob’s apartment. After playing with the dogs, Jacob brought white wine and cheese to the deck. They drank wine, ate fancy cheese and those little crackers she had only seen on TV. Jacob’s sister, Val, and Delphie kept her laughing with funny stories about each other. She was all but asleep when he suggested she come upstairs to take a shower. He took her up to his gorgeous apartment, set out a towel and a bathrobe for her, then disappeared into the house.
Jill knew what was expected of her. After all, why would he have brought her to his house? She showered with his lavish soap and shampoo and then wrapped herself in his plush bathrobe.
Looking at his comfortable, queen-sized bed, she panicked. She couldn’t go through with it. She couldn’t sleep with some guy just because she thought he was cute … or because he paid for the hospital … or because she liked his house … or because she loved his mother … or … Vexed with herself, Jill called her best friend Sandy.
“Okay, sorry, I couldn’t hear you,” Sandy said. “What’s wrong?”
“Jacob took me back to his apartment.”
“You mean after he paid for the hospital, he took you back to his place? What’s it like?”
“It’s gorgeous. I mean, the furniture needs replacing, maybe some colors on the walls, and there’s a lot of electronic equipment. Typical guy’s place, you know. But it’s all wood floors, cut-glass leaded windows, and … The house is amazing. He calls it the ‘Castle.’ You’ll just die when you see it.”
“So what’s the problem?”
“I don’t think I can …”
Jill heard Heather ask for an update and Sandy explained what was wrong with Jill.
“Listen. There is only one reason a man brings you back to his place,” Sandy said. “Is there a bedside table?”
“Um … yeah,” Jill said.
“Open the drawer,” Sandy said.
“Okay,” Jill said. She slid open drawer in the antique table drawer.
“Condoms?” Sandy said.
Jill dug through the drawer. A reading light. Kleenex. Earplugs. A pair of glasses. A dog treat. A bag of throat lozenges. She gasped when she saw them. Jacob had condoms in this drawer!
“That man is ready to play,” Sandy said. “Good for you.”
“I don’t think I can do it. I mean, I know the accounting lady said I was going to have to, but I can’t just sleep with someone.”
“Honey, I don’t think he brought you to his apartment so you could sleep.”
“I know … What do I do?”
“She wants to know what to do,” Sandy said to Tanesha and Heather.
Jill heard her friends laugh. Tanesha grabbed the phone from Sandy.
“Jill, it’s Tanesha. I think you should enjoy that gorgeous man. You might just figure out why people actually like sex.”
“But Tanesha, I barely know this guy.”
“You know him enough for him to pay off your hospital bill. With the emergency room, what’s that gonna be? 20k? 30k?”
“I don’t know,” Jill mumbled.
“Honey, have some fun. You deserve it. That’s all I wanted to say,” Tanesha said. “She’s all yours.”
“I couldn’t have said it better,” Sandy said.
Jill heard Heather in the background. “Tell her we want every detail!”
The retelling of Denver Cereal, Volume 1 continues tomorrow…
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