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My mind knows it’s just a fake. But my heart cries as if it’s real…
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I wasn’t a wallflower; I’d always been the first one to the dance floor. I loved to party; I loved to love, drink, get down, do crazy things, wear very little … at least that’s what everyone was supposed to believe. So, sitting alone on Valentine’s Day at the St. Marks Brewery and Tavern wasn’t a wallflower move, it was a full out escape plan. I needed to breathe. My last “date” was trending so hard on all social media platforms, I was beginning to suffocate.
Kylie Morgan breaks it off with Dane Wynters after just months of dating.
Kylie is seen with a mystery man.
Kylie Morgan leaving Starbucks with a new boyfriend.
My modeling agency kept the rumors swirling … all I had to do was show up. Dane Wynters was actually gay … his public relations company was working a whole different angle there. I really liked Dane; we had a lot of fun while we were “dating” so the pictures online of us goofing off and traipsing around Manhattan were real. The relationship wasn’t … and never had been, not once. I hadn’t actually been in a relationship ever. At twenty-three I’d had a few dates with people I thought might have been fun. Usually, they wanted the wild girl my agency had the world believing I was … and I just wasn’t that person. I liked quiet nights, books, playing video games, a good craft brew, and hiking. My idea of having fun was a long night talking about solving the world’s problems. My being a nympho sex goddess, scantily clad runaway whore was just business … my one-night stands with playboys and media influencers were all for the press.
For whatever reason, Valentine’s Day was hard for me. I shouldn’t have cared, but it was the loneliest time of the year because it reminded me of how few people actually knew me at all. I was adored by everyone and loved by just a couple of my closest friends. Only my roommates knew the real me. St. Marks was right down the street from the apartment I shared with them. It was a cool loft we could barely afford. While I had a lot of money, I knew that modeling wasn’t going to carry me forever, so I saved most of what I made.
Avery and Madison did the same. We played, had fun, spent money on things we liked but shared a loft together to make things more manageable. I didn’t trust too many people, but my posse? They were my world.
“KYLIE!” Avery screamed into the phone, very drunk. “Where are you? You’re supposed to be here; the music is pumping! People are practically humping on the dance floor.”
“I met someone. Can you believe it after all this time? It’s really new, so we’re just going to lay low. We’re at St. Marks getting a few beers, nothing too radical. You and Maddy have fun. I’ll see y’all sometime tomorrow.” I was ready to hang up, hoping my bluff would work when she interrupted me.
“What? Are you serious? Kylie this is epic! You found a guy?” Avery’s voice raised two octaves.
“We are definitely not at ‘epic’… it’s more like interesting with a dash of fun.” I giggled appropriately … I just had to get her off the phone, then I’d be safe.
“Maddy and I’ll come over there then. This party blows without you ’cause no one is here to see us.” I could picture her ‘rolling her eyes’.
“I’m sure as soon as they get to know you …” I tried to encourage her as Avery, who was gorgeous and actually had turned down several modeling contracts to focus on her fashion career, had her own troubles with men.
“And when people realize you’re not there … they move on. It happens all of the time, Kylie.” She seemed mad for a moment.
“Really, don’t come,” I just blurted out, panicked she and Maddy might actually show up at the bar.
“See you soon,” Avery threatened, and I knew there was a very good chance, in fact, a better than very good chance, she and Madison were going to just show up at the bar.
I panicked. Now my quiet Valentine’s Day to myself where I could wallow in my own tragic pity was perfectly ruined. I was really looking the part of the forlorn and loveless too. I had on a pair of ripped baggy jeans, a beanie, and a rando University of Oregon shirt I got at a thrift store. I was pretty sure not one person at that bar knew I was Kylie Morgan. Now I was going to have to blow my cover to get my roommates off my back.
They were being bold and invasive, yes, but they perpetually had my back. Their capes were forever flying. We’d been that way since grade school when Avery noticed that the only other really pretty girl in school was suffering the same plague of the unwanted attention she was. Madison was so cute … adorable cute, that saved her. Avery and I were a little too sexy for seventh grade. We became a three … the three … the only three we needed. We went everywhere together, and because of this not only survived middle school but high school and college as well. They were my family. My real family … who knew? I bounced from one foster home to the next, and at the age of eighteen, I was free. I only had one request and that was to stay with my posse. I didn’t care about what foster family I went with, so I ended up in a group home for girls. It wasn’t horrible … mostly, until it was.