In our rooms -- so many times, in our rooms.
We're having more sex, but it's no longer just sex. Something happened the night of the engagement party, I think -- Caulter became less irritating. He's growing on me. Which is weird.
It's also upsetting. It was one thing when we were sneaking around when our parents were gone, but it's different now that they're back. And that they're getting married. Soon we really are going to be step-siblings, and then what's going to happen?
There's also the other thing I keep thinking about -- and it's all Caulter's fault for planting the thought in my head, the possibility that I really might be able to go to UCLA. Now I keep wondering what would happen if I did.
It's all Caulter's fault for making me feel happy. That's the thing about being happy - it makes you want more of that feeling. And happiness is dangerous, because it never lasts. Life has taught me that much.
I look in the mirror, straightening the stray tendril of hair that refuses to stay in the slick high ponytail. I look like a fucking PTA mom, I think, in my pastel colored suit and nude pumps. Or an Easter egg.
We’re about to go downstairs for an interview, all part of my father’s re-election campaign but not really. It’s a national news station that doesn’t care all that much about the incumbent from New Hampshire who’s predicted to win by a landslide vote; what they really care about is the wedding. And the family drama.
They’re going to want to know all about how Caulter and I are getting along. Luckily, we’ve been prepped. We have stock phrases to use. None of those stock phrases involve we're fucking like rabbits, or his cock makes me so wet I practically drip when I’m near him.
“Hey.” The door from the balcony slides open, and his voice makes me jump.
“Shit, Caulter,” I whisper. “Stop scaring me like that.”
“You look like an Easter egg,” he says.
“I do, don’t I? That’s exactly what I was thinking. Is this orange or pink?” I ask, smoothing the skirt. I think it’s a linen fabric of some kind -- I think I should be playing canasta in Florida in this dress.
“Coral,” Caulter says, walking up behind me and placing his hand on my rear. “It does make your ass look great, though.”
“Hands off,” I order. “No hanky panky.”
“Aw, you get in a pastel suit and you start acting like a grandma,” Caulter says, looking past me to his reflection in the mirror. “Even more than usual, I mean.”
“Ha ha.” My eyes trace down the length of him. “Are you supposed to be wearing a jacket?”
“Nope, just a collared shirt,” he says. “The stylist picked it out. Apparently I can't be too formal, you know. I’ve been told my brand is ‘tamed rebel’.”
I cringe. “Did she really say that? Is this the same stylist who picked out all the new clothes after you burned mine?"
"Same one," he says. "Not the panties, though. That was all my doing." He reaches for the hem of my dress, remarking more softly now, “Let me check to see if you’re wearing them.”
I swat his hand away, but he slides it between my legs. “Stop, seriously, we’re about to go down there. You shouldn’t even be in here.”
“We have time for a quickie,” he says
I laugh. “Get away from me, asshole.”
He doesn't seem too put off by my rebuff, even as he pulls his hand back and smacks me lightly on the ass. “I picked out every single pair of those panties, by the way. The 'tamed rebel' thing is from your father's PR person or whoever she is, though."
“Mona,” I say, rolling my eyes. “She’s a tyrant.”
“She says I'm a tamed rebel,” he says. “It sounds exciting. Maybe I should mention who tamed me when we’re on camera.”
I swat at him, but he ducks out of the way, heading for the balcony door. “You’re a total rebel,” I say, watching him light a cigarette. “Are you seriously going to do that right before the interview?”
He blows smoke off the balcony but looks at me. “Do you want me to get through the interview?”
“Whatever,” I say. “As long as you play along.”
“I’ll play the good little step-brother,” he says. “But I’ll be undressing you the whole time with my eyes.”
I laugh. “I’m sure.”
Thirty minutes later, we’re downstairs in the library, of all locations. Which is pretty much the exact place I’ve fantasized about having to sit in front of a camera and answer questions about my relationship with my step-brother. I mean, it’s just fucking perfect.