His Little Black Book
Pocket Books
On Sale October 17, 2006

Brookeís Unbreakable Rules

    Get First, Then Give
    Never waste your time on anything that doesn't get you something in return.
    Don't give it away; no itinerant penises, no pointless one night stands
    Never give it up at home; always his turf, because if he takes you there, he wants you there
    Do not not NOT fall in love
    Never get heavily invested in any man; let him invest in you
    Always dress to kill, and always wear high heels
    Be discreet, aloof, mysterious and elusive

... Brooke looked at MJ, and MJ shrugged. They had had a month of Delia mourning her impossible and destructive relationship while they tried to talk sense into her.

Brooke looked out the diner window which fronted the main street. It was a nice town, with lots of old brick buildings housing quaint shops, a tourist town, and a nice college town if you wanted to be far away from everywhere—which maybe wasn't a good thing to be. The place was too insular, the school was too small, and you couldn't hide from your professors, your responsibilities, or your lovers when they didn't call.

This was the lesson that Delia had yet to learn: you just didn't get so full-brain-and-body involved at this stage of the game. There is no point to ever getting involved, really, Brooke thought. Involvement led to pain. You lost control. You lost self-respect. You lost yourself.

Better just to have sex wherever you could find it. Then you were in control. Then no one could hurt you. Then you inflicted the pain.

So much more satisfying ...

Brooke twirled the spoon in her cold coffee. She felt her fury rising yet again at the thought of everything Delia had been through with Frank. .

"We've given them control," she said abruptly. "We've just up and handed them everything and given them tacit permission to give back nothing. And it started when we were young, too, because we were always pushed by the need to popular, to be cool, to be part of the "in" crowd. So we gave away everything precious in the service of not being the odd one out. Everything. Including our virginity."

Just saying it out loud infuriated her even more. "Damn it—we're not baby girls any more. We're not stupid. We know the ropes. And we fall into the trap every time. We fall in love. We invest in the relationship, and what do we get? Shafted. Dumped. Dropped."

"Excessed," MJ put in caustically..

Brooke made a derisive sound. "The hell with it. When do we learn the lesson? Itís all about sex anyway. And itís never about anything long-term. Itís never about the future. Itís about the five minute future, as much time as it takes for them to get it up and get it in. ThatĎs all they want, five minutes of pussy time. Thatís their idea of a relationship. And what do we get?"

They looked at her blankly.

"Time," Brooke answered her own question emphatically. "Time to weep and mourn every time they abandon us. Well, hell—if all we have is time, then you know what— it is time— Itís time to be the ones who manipulate the situation, itís time to take control. Itís time to make them pay."

... time to make them pay ...

An idea skittered around the edges of her mind. A delicious salacious idea that melted into her consciousness like the most luscious chocolate.

Why not, why not?

What was she thinking?

That would be—what?

Smart. Savvy. ... scary ...

How? What would they be doing that they didn't willingly do now?

I don't know, I don't know, but itís different. Itís not right, thereís something not right about it ...


Like—good times, good men, just rewards ...

Like American Express Reward points?


Her breath caught. She saw it clearly in her mindís eye—the three of them lapped in luxury, swathed in furs, huddled in limousines with gorgeous elegant older men ...

Why not? What was the difference, after all?

The difference was—adult mature wealthy men who would treat them like queens, as opposed to the lapping puppy boys with their hot hands, hot words, and horny bodies who would leave them with heartache and misery instead of jewels and gratitude.

"You know what—" she started, and stopped. This was crazy, they'd think she was nuts.

But MJ and Delia were both looking at her expectantly, hopefully, Delia, especially, whose tears had dried but whose face was fraught with longing.

It was something. It was a challenge. It was better than anything they had now.

"We should form a mistress club," she said suddenly, quickly, as if she couldn't believe she was saying the words.

"Oh my God—" MJ breathed, as if Brooke had opened a holy book at the page marked epiphanies.

"Oh we couldn't—" Delia protested simultaneously, but it was such a naughty, over-the-top notion, she was instantly seduced by the idea.

"No—listen. Listen—" To what? Brooke had no idea; she was still formulating the plan, the core idea, even as she spoke. "We've been giving it away to jerks who allow us give them blow jobs, after which they blow us off. They're looking for thirty second relationships when we're looking for thirty years. Itís just not going to happen, not here, not now. So what the hell are we doing? We're investing our emotions and our hopes in quicksand. This is not good business."

Brooke looked at their faces. MJ looked awed. MJ the business major got the bottom line mentality, instantly and completely.

Delia looked shocked, tentative, interested. At least Delia was reacting and not crying. This was good. Maybe Brooke could sell this. It sounded good to her.

Hell, it sounded like a career ...

His Little Black Book
Pocket Books
October 2006
ISBN: 1416524150

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