Letting out a breath, Jill waited for security to notice her. When the man turned, she smiled. It was her brother Steve’s best friend, David.
“God damn, you look good,” David said. “You should see the prunes inside.”
She smiled and turned to look at the crowded room. She had never been in a room where she knew no one. As she watched, her sister’s best friend floated by with a tray of hors d’oeuvres. Well, almost no one.
“Go find Candy,” David said. “She’s waiting for you behind the main bar.”
Crossing the room, Jill felt every eyeball evaluate her. Out of the corner of her eye, she saw men stare while women shifted away. She chuckled to herself over the men’s lust-filled looks. A hand brushed her arm as another friend walked by with a tray of hors d’oeuvres.
Catching a glimpse of Candy, Jill stepped up to the bar. With the bar pressed against her ribs, she recited her purpose in her head:
“Show him what he’s missing; just show him what he’s missing. That’s all — just show him what he’s missing.”
Jill was seconds into her mantra trance when she felt the warmth of a man standing next to her. His eyes were focused on her face.
“Hi,” he said.
Jill looked over at him, then back to the bar. She had practiced this for weeks. Sophisticated women are unfriendly. Don’t smile. Don’t be nice. Don’t be your effervescent self.
“I thought I knew everyone on the guest list,” he said. “But I do not remember an invitation to the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen in my entire life.”
Jill couldn’t help herself. She started laughing.
Wrinkling her nose, she asked, “Is that a pick-up line?”
“Pretty pathetic, eh? I’m Jacob,” he said.
“Jill.” She held her hand out and he shook it.
“Jill as in ‘baby mommy’ Jill?” Jacob asked.
“I’m not sure what you’re asking,” Jill said.
“My sister is marrying this guy, Trevor? He has a baby with a woman named Jill. Some one-night-stand thing. He says she’s a total bitch …”
Candy flew across the back of the bar to Jill. “Sir, can I get you something to drink?”
“I’ll have whatever she’s drinking,” Jacob said, pointing to Jill.
“She’s not drinking. Bitch whores tend not to drink at social functions.” Candy’s voice was saccharin-sweet but the temperature dropped with her icy smile and cold eyes.
“I didn’t say that,” Jacob said.
The retelling of Denver Cereal, Volume 1 continues tomorrow…
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