“Professor Oliver is convinced my writing is suffering from the fact that I haven’t had sex in a while to loosen myself up. He thinks I’m uptight.”
“What?!” she gasped. “You?! Uptight?! No way!”
“Anyway, he’s one hundred percent wrong about the manuscript. It’s good.”
She rubbed her hands together, giddy. “Is it? Can I read it?”
I hesitated, and she rolled her eyes.
“I’m your biggest fan, remember? If I don’t love it, you’ll know Ollie was right. If I do love it, you’ll know you’re right.”
Well, I did love to be right.
I handed her the chapters, and she sat reading, her eyes darting back and forth over the pages. Every now and then she’d glance at me with a concerned look. Finally, she finished and cleared her throat. “A lion?”
I rolled my eyes. “I need to get laid.”
“Take off your tie, Graham.”
“I need you to unlock your phone and take off your tie and the suit jacket. No girl who is trying to have sex is in search of a man with a freaking suit and tie on. Plus, you buttoned the top button on your shirt.”
“It looks like your neck has a muffin top.”
“You’re being ridiculous. This is a custom-made designer suit.”
“You rich people and your labels. All I hear is that it’s not a penis, and therefore it eliminates your opportunities to get laid. Now, unlock your phone and take off the tie.”
Annoyed, I followed her orders. “Better?” I asked, crossing my arms.
She grimaced. “A little. Here, unbutton the top three buttons on your shirt.”
I did as she said, and she nodded, taking photographs.
“Yes! Chest hair—women who are trying to get it on love some chest hair. It’s like the three little pigs; it has to be the right amount. Not too much, not too little, your hair is justtttt right.” She grinned.
“Have you been drinking again?” I asked.
She laughed. “No. This is just me.”
“That’s what I was afraid of.”
After taking some shots, she studied them with the biggest frown I’d ever seen. “Yeah, no. You have to take off your shirt completely.”
“What? Don’t be ridiculous. I’m not taking off my shirt in front of you.”
“Graham,” Lucy whined, rolling her eyes. “You have your shirt off every other day doing that kangaroo thing with Talon. Now shut up and take off your shirt.”
After some more arguing, I finally gave in. She even had me switch into dark black jeans—to “look more manly.” She started snapping photographs, telling me to turn left and right, to smile with my eyes—whatever that meant—and to be moody but sexy.
“Okay, one more. Turn to the side, drop your head a little, and slide your hands into your back pockets. Look as if you hate everything about me taking pictures of you.”
“There,” she said, grinning from ear to ear. “Your pictures are now uploaded. Now all that’s left to do is perfect your bio.”
“No need,” I told her, reaching for my cell phone. “I already did that part.”
She raised an eyebrow, seeming unsure, and then went to read it. “New York Times bestselling author who has a six-month-old child. Married, but the wife ran away. Looking to hook up. Also, I’m five foot eleven.”
“Everyone seems to put their height. I guess it’s a thing.”
“This is awful. Here, I’ll fix it.”
I hurried over to her, standing behind to watch what she typed.
Looking for sex. I am a big dick.
“I think you meant I have a big dick,” I remarked.
She wickedly replied, “No, I meant what I wrote.”
I groaned and went to grab my phone.
“Okay, okay, I’ll try again!”
Looking for casual sex, no strings attached.
Unless you’re into being tied up.
Looking at you, Anastasia.
“Who’s Anastasia?” I asked.
Lucy tossed me my phone and laughed to herself. “All that matters is that the women will understand. Now all you have to do is swipe right if you find them attractive, left if you think they’re not. Then, just wait for the magic to happen.”
“Thank you for your help.”
“Well, you gave me a garden, so the least I can do is get you laid. I’m going to order the pizza now. I’m exhausted after all of that.”
“Only cheese on my half! Oh, Lucille?”
She narrowed her eyes and shook her head twice. “Nope, not even touching that one. Only one social media adventure a night. We’ll save the snapping for another day.”
Graham’s first Tinder date was on Saturday, and before he left, I forced him to change out of his suit and tie and into a plain white T-shirt and dark jeans.
“It feels too casual,” he complained.
“Um, it’s not like your clothes are going to stay on anyway. Now go. Go on and spread some legs, do some pelvic thrusts, and then come back home and write about horror stories and monsters.”
He left at eight-thirty that night.
By nine, he’d returned.
I arched an eyebrow. “Um, not to sound totally disrespectful to your manhood and all but…that was legit the fastest round of sex in the history of sex.”
“I didn’t sleep with her,” Graham replied, dropping his keys on the table in the foyer.
“She turned out to be a liar.”
“Oh no!” I frowned, feeling my chest tighten for him. “Married? Kids? Three hundred pounds bigger than her picture? Did she have a penis? Was her name George?”
“No,” he said harshly, plopping down on the living room couch.
“Then what was it?”
“Her hair. On the app, she was a brunette, but when I got there, she was a blonde.”
I blinked repeatedly. Full-on blank stare. “Come again?”
“I’m just saying, it’s obvious that if she’d lie about something like that, she’d lie about gonorrhea and chlamydia.” The way he said it with such a straight face made me burst out into a giggling fit.
“Yes, Graham, that’s exactly how it works.” I laughed, my stomach hurting from laughing so hard.
“This isn’t funny, Lucille. It turns out I’m not a person who can just randomly sleep with someone. I’m on a deadline, and I cannot for the life of me figure out how I’m going to loosen up in time to send the book to my editor. It was supposed to be done by the time Talon was born. That was over six months ago.”
I smiled widely and bit my bottom lip. “You know what? I think I have an idea, and I’m one hundred and ten percent sure you’re going to hate it.”
“What is it?” he asked.
“Have you ever heard of hot yoga?”
“I’m the only man in here,” Graham whispered as he walked into the yoga studio with me that Sunday morning. He was in a white tank top with gray sweatpants, and he looked terrified.
“Don’t be silly, Graham Cracker. The instructor is a guy. Toby. You’ll fit right in.”