Sept. 23, 1999
Wednesday morning, August 18
Yesterday, I discovered that afternoon coffee at Starbucks could be
as exciting as a first date at Balthazar -- if you're with the
right guy. Or even the wrong guy, as Randy happens to be.
"Did you tell Matt about the stalker?" Randy asked in his overly
direct, young voice. The sound of his voice used to startle and
repel -- I found it sexually and socially presumptuous. But now I
like this overwhelming feeling -- he makes me feel like I'm
somewhere I've never been.
"No," I half-mumbled, chewing the plastic straw in my Frappuccino.
I took in his well-constructed cheekbones and his alarmingly tender
eyes -- you can't really avoid a face if it's not framed by hair,
I thought. Too many of these young bald guys have a tendency to
look mean and weak but Randy -- sweet, boyish and confident -- can
carry it off.
Randy fell silent as I looked away, trying to hide my simmering
excitement. Here I am playing hooky from my customers in the
middle of the day, flirting with a cute boy who doesn't know I
actually charge other men to fuck me ... a guy I shouldn't bother
"Why don't you tell him?" he said, after a moment. "Doesn't your
boyfriend care if some guy is threatening your safety?"
"Randy," I sighed. "Thanks for worrying but I am old enough to be
your big sister." How old is he, anyway? Is he even 20?
Biologically speaking, I might even be old enough to be -- banish that
"I hadn't really noticed," he said, giving me a slightly insolent
once-over that made me blush and change the subject.
"So, I think I should join a completely different gym and erase my
existing records," I told him. "Maybe that would get the creep off
my case. I mean, you're not always there and -- you know how
clueless some of the other trainers are."
I was really thinking: If the guy's a cop and he comes back with
some kind of search warrant -- but have I thought this through?
If I switch to a new gym, I'll have fewer opportunities to ... flirt
with Randy. Our cup of coffee, that time he walked me home -- it's
all quite normal since he works at a gym where I'm a member. If I
went to a new gym, I would have to -- call Randy?? I
couldn't believe I was contemplating a "come hither" strategy with
"That guy hasn't been back," Randy reminded me. "I may have erased
him from the place."
How do I explain that I'm in danger without actually telling him
what I do for a living?
"I've been getting these strange phone calls and I think it's
him," I said. Randy's expression darkened as I continued:
"Somebody calls from time to time and --" this next part was not
quite true -- "the first time, he pretended he was from the phone
company! He knows too much about me." I couldn't exactly admit
that I'd been speaking to a strange caller in the hopes that he was
"What does Matt want you to do about it?"
"Look, Matt doesn't know," I explained. "I don't want him to worry
"You haven't told him that either? Your whole thing with Matt --
it doesn't make sense. Does he love you?"
"Randy, that's --"
"Kind of personal?"
"Well, so is what you're asking me to do -- right? Sneak into the
gym computer and screw around with your records?"
"But what does Matt being in love with me have to do with any of
Randy looked utterly bemused. "Nothing, I guess."
"He says he does," I suddenly blurted out, "and I've met his family."
"How can you be engaged to a guy if you can't tell him that you're being hassled by a stalker?"
"Who says we're engaged?"
"Just checking," said Randy. "Whenever I've seen him -- picking you
up at the gym -- you looked like ..."
"An engaged couple?"
I stopped myself from bluntly saying, "Well, we're not" because
I love the idea of Randy thinking that Matt wants to marry me.
"Well," I said, "I wouldn't define my relationship with Matt
quite that way."
I allowed myself to look straight into Randy's eyes and thought,
Christ, I have never wanted a guy to fuck me as badly as
I do right this minute. My panties were pressing tightly against my pussy and my hands felt weak. I shifted in my chair, which made my panties press even harder, and wondered if he
"What are you thinking?" Randy asked in a quiet voice. It sounded
more like an order than a question. "Tell me," he said, almost
My lips parted and he stared at my mouth as if he owned it ... he was looking at me that way for the first time, discovering something about me. I blinked and stopped myself from telling
him what I really wanted, but I couldn't resist giving him a
helpless, putty-in-your-hands glance. And the way he acknowledged
it -- with a long, interested stare -- made me forget who I was.
"We both have to get back to our jobs," I said abruptly. "I've been
avoiding getting to work all day." At least -- after all these white lies, there was a lot of truth to that.
"What exactly do you do, anyway?"
"It's not very interesting, but it does require concentration --
I'm a proof-reader ... but you make it very hard to concentrate."
I didn't let him walk me home -- and this time, he didn't force the
Thursday, August 19
Jasmine and I met at Pinky's on York Avenue for pedicures, then
walked over to her apartment in our open-toed sandals, gossiping
while our toenails dried. "The Anabel scandal was on TV today,"
Jasmine told me. "Those L.A. hookers -- no matter how much trouble
they're in, they love the publicity! And three of Anabel's girls were
on Larry King last night -- never in my life have I seen such mindless bimbos.
They were so tacky, they made April look like Grace Kelly!"
"God, this is making me so paranoid -- I can't answer my business
phone. And I haven't been calling my customers back. I'm terrified
some client will ask me about April."
"Agoraphobia," Jasmine mused.
"No, that's when you can't go out. I don't mind going out. I'm just
afraid to work. I feel paralyzed."
"Agora phobia," she enunciated. "Fear of the marketplace. But,
knowing you -- when the rent is due, your fear will evaporate. If
anyone asks you about April, just stonewall. The only john you want
to discuss this with is Milt -- he has a right to ask. But nobody
Then I broke down and told her about the troubling events at the gym and my
unconsummated obsession with Randy.
"I can't stop thinking about him," I confessed. "We had coffee the
other day and I had to make myself come as soon as I got back to my
"Wow, that's pretty bad!" Jasmine sympathized. "Maybe Randy's the real reason
for your aversion to working ... Maybe a fling with him will calm your nerves.
Like a vaccine -- sometimes a small amount of the virus cures the disease."
"No!" I exclaimed. "Randy might let Matt find out. You can't trust
young guys -- or their egos. They're out of control. I don't want
to lose Matt over some teenager I met at the gym."
"Well," said Jasmine, "who do you think about when you're coming?
Besides yourself, that is."
We were standing at a crosswalk, and I looked around to make sure
nobody was listening.
"Both," I admitted. "And sometimes just Randy. But it's never just
Matt anymore." Increasingly, since the conversation with Randy, I
think of Matt as husband material. I guess I care too much --
I've made an investment and I want to see what the future brings.
Let's face it, he's a catch.
"I think you should give Randy an excuse to erase those records at
the health club -- if he knows how. Just don't get too involved --
keeping up with two boyfriends could ruin your business."