The best way to ruin a perfectly wonderful friendship?
Have sex with your BFF.
That’s what Troy calls what was easily the single best sexual experience of my life. He claims our “slip” was due to too much alcohol. I respond the only way I know how, which is by burying the entire experience under a six-foot mound of denial and regret. Lesson learned.
When I’m finally in a place emotionally where I can move on with someone else, Troy does a complete about face. Now he wants me. And he wants more.
That should have been the end, right? I’m getting what I’ve wanted since I was sixteen. But devastating news turns Troy’s life upside down and soon becomes my cross to bear. And the only way I can get back everything I lost is to bare it all. Literally.
Now my boyfriend may be a progressive, twenty-first century kind of guy, but when it comes to his girlfriend posing nude for Playboy?
He’s 100% Neanderthal.
“Don’t tell me you’re actually considering taking it?”
Troy’s expression is a combination of stark horror and disbelief. His tone could not be more condemning, teeth gritted and jaw clenched so tight, I’m surprised he managed to get the question past his lips.
“I-I don’t know,” I reply in an uncustomary stutter. I knew he wouldn’t be crazy about the idea, but I didn’t expect the fury that had his body coiled and rigid.
His icy gray gaze rakes slowly down my body before tracking up to my heated face. “If you take it…” His voice fades off, the steel in it as inexorable as ever.
It’s the ominous warning in his tone that snaps my spine straight and has me narrowing my eyes. “If I take you’ll what? Not be friends with me anymore?” I’m all dripping sarcasm and challenge as I air quote the word. “C’mon, Troy, let’s be honest here. We haven’t really been friends since freshman year.” Nothing’s been the same between us since we had sex.
If possible his jaw clenches tighter and some indiscernible emotion flashes in his eyes.
Here it comes, the explosion. After two years of tiptoeing around the elephant in the room, we’re finally going to have it out. And thank God because we need this. I need this. I need to know if there’s ever going to be anything more between us so I can emotionally move on from him if that’s what I’m going to need to do.
In the lengthening silence, we stare at each other, his face a shuttered mask I can’t see beneath. Troy finally breaks that silence when he turns and begins walking down the hall. A gunshot in a still and quiet night could not have had more impact. The shock of it keeps me rooted in place.
I’m still trying to process what’s happening when I hear the resounding slam of the apartment door signaling his departure.
And exactly where we stand.