Just One Night:Part 2

By: Elle Casey

just one night A Serial Romance Part 2



DEDICATION





To the confident, sexy girl inside all of us.





A note about serial romances…





This book is what’s called a serial romance. Most readers are familiar with full-length novels, novellas, and short stories, but many are not so familiar with serialized fiction. With the advent of self-publishing has come many different innovations, but believe it or not, a serial novel is not one of them. Serials have been around since the seventeenth century! They became especially popular in Britain’s Victorian Era (nineteenth century), “due to a combination of the rise of literacy, technological advances in printing, and improved economics of distribution.”* The Pickwick Papers by Charles Dickens may be a serial you’re familiar with. The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers were also serials, as were Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Madame Bovary, Anna Karenina, and The Bonfire of the Vanities, among many others. Use of this format started to die down when periodicals fell out of favor and were then replaced by the Internet, but thanks to indie authors, it’s coming back! As a reader, I’ve found it a fun way to follow a story that’s always evolving while the anticipation builds between episodes or parts, and in the case of my serials it will be a story that evolves according to reader feedback. Please join the conversation about this book on my website at: http://www.ellecasey.com/just-one-night.










Part 1





Part 2





CHAPTER ONE

Jennifer





I WANT TO DIE. I want to shrivel up and die a thousand deaths, because just one would not be enough to get rid of all the regret I’m feeing right now. Mia was right. Placing that ad was the dumbest idea I’ve ever had. An entire week has passed and I’m still suffering the fallout.

Racing out of the hotel with one shoe on and my hair in a tangle was the very least of my problems. It’s the stupid broken heart I’m living with now that’s making it hard to breathe. Why did I let this happen? When did my heart decide to get involved? I think it was somewhere between the visit to the dress shop and the amazing orgasm, but I’m not sure.

I stare at the cell phone I just broke into a hundred tiny pieces. It was ringing off the hook with the new weekend arriving, with men calling from far and wide to take advantage of my fabulous offer of one-night stand companionship.

Ugh. Why did I ever think that was going to be a good idea? Mia was totally and completely right. I am not one night stand material. I guess I kept the phone and held on this long because I was hoping beyond hope that William would call again. But of course he hasn’t. Our night together was a one-time deal only. I can hardly fault the guy for following the rules, now can I? I’m the one who’s trying to change the game when it’s already over. Stupid, silly, sad me.

I hear someone at the front door and then a key in the lock. I can’t make myself get worried or upset about it, too busy drowning my sorrows in orange juice to care. There’s only one person it can be anyway and she’s mostly harmless.

Mia lets herself into my apartment and walks into the kitchen. She stops in the doorway and stares at the wreckage that used to be my cell. “What the hell happened to that poor phone?” She throws her keys and purse down on the table with a clatter and a thump.

“I killed it.” I take another swig of my juice and burp out the air that went down with it. William Stratford is gone forever. Yes, I know his full name thanks to Claudia the dressmaker, and I’ve already Googled him about a thousand times. But that doesn’t mean I’m going to show up at his doorstep begging for another date and end up like that woman who approached us on the dance floor. Holy stalker alert. I’m pitiful, but I’m not a wreck for God’s sake. Not a total wreck, anyway.

Mia sits across from me and pushes her purse out of the way, staring at my other cell phone still intact and resting by my hand.

“You have two phones?” She leans in and widens her eyes. “Why?”

Slowly lowering my head to the table, I sigh, mumbling into the fake wood. “Don’t ask.”

“Oh, I’m asking. You better believe I’m asking. The only time you overdose on Vitamin C is when you have a man hangover. Tell me what happened.”

I can’t find the energy to lift my head and look at her so I keep talking into the formica. “I’m a terrible person. A ho of the highest order. Just let me die alone and single.”

“Hey, I’m single. Single doesn’t have to suck.” She leans over and shakes me by the shoulder.

I have no comment for that. I want to believe it’s true but it doesn’t feel like it is. I do lift my head, though, and stare at her listlessly. My hair hangs limply around my face. I’ve taken the last three days off to work from home, but I haven’t actually gotten anything accomplished. I haven’t showered, I haven’t changed out of my fuzzy robe, I haven’t even brushed my teeth yet today and it’s already six o’clock and time for dinner.