Eddie is in love. The problem is, Eddie’s in love with four men ... four men simultaneously, that is. But who does Eddie love more? And can the heart feel for that many men equally? Ah, but it does have four chambers, so four seems the most logical choice ... at least, of course, to Eddie.
Paula is Eddie’s famous mom. One by one, each of his lovers comes to work for her, their lives so connected that if one of them itches, another one scratches. But who will wind up with whom in this hysterically funny tale of life and love and friendship? In the end, it’s up to fate to decide what none of them could possibly have seen coming.
He didn’t say anything. There was a pause, and then he pushed himself up until his face was just above my own. I stared up into his eyes. The room was dark, but I could still make out the faintest shade of blue. “Say it,” he whispered.
“Say what?” I whispered back.
“Say that you wanted me to kiss you.”
His face moved in even closer. The room was hot, hotter still by the sheets and the blanket and him hovering above me. “I wanted you to kiss me because we were best friends and you were leaving me forever.”
He chuckled, the vibration travelling through the bed and up into my chest. “Not so forever though, huh?”
And then there was that kiss again. Only it wasn’t the kiss from before. Brian wasn’t seven anymore and this wasn’t a fleeting goodbye. In fact, this was more of a hello, nice to see you, let’s stay like this until our lips need a crowbar to pry them apart. And guess what? There were no crowbars in the minifridge. Not even a fingernail clipper. Nope, all there was was me and him kissing as if nine years hadn’t even been nine seconds and he didn’t have a girlfriend and our mothers weren’t in the next room.
If that previous kiss all those years earlier had been my first kiss, then the second one was one hell of an encore. My mom would kill for such an encore, in fact. You see, among everything else in the universe, it was unique and perfect and wouldn’t ever be forgotten, not when I was thirty, not when I was eighty.
When at last he broke free, his face still above mine, he smiled. “And why did you let me kiss you this time then?”
I pulled my hand up above the sheets and blanket and ran it through his thick mane of hair, just like I’d always wanted to do. “Because we’re best friends.”
His lips again touched down on mine before he resumed his position. “Are we?”
My hand caressed his cheek. There was a light stubble there. I wondered if he could grow a beard, or if he would in a year or two or six. “I don’t know what we are. It just felt like the right thing to say. Does that make sense?”
He nodded. “Do you believe in fate, Eddie?”
My body suddenly tensed and then relaxed. There was that word again: fate. It felt as if he had hit me with it. “You think fate brought us together again, or that it brought us together the first time?”
His hand also rose from beneath the covers before finding its way through my hair, his fingers lightly raking across my scalp, sending a million little goosebumps up my arm. “When I saw you standing in the parking lot earlier tonight, that’s the first word that popped into my head.” The kiss repeated. I was shocked that it was even more amazing than the last. “So do you?” he asked when again he moved his lips away.
My eyelids fluttered open. “Do I what?”
“Believe in fate?”
Yes, I did in fact. Though I was scared to admit it. Scared that I’d be tempting it. I was sixteen. This was all new to me. And so, I replied, “Well, my mom is pretty damned funny, but not worth travelling all the way from Pittsburg to see.”
“So that’s a yes then?”
I pulled him in, my arms wrapped tightly around him. I kissed him in reply. That felt safer than a yes. That felt more honest, at any rate. That felt, like I’ve said, perfect.