Sugar Daddy

By: Nicole Andrews Moore

Chapter One

“What are you going to do?” Her friend asked her sympathetically one winter afternoon from the comfort of the secondhand recently acquired sofa.

She shrugged and did what she normally did, masked the pain with humor. “Maybe I’ll search for a sugar daddy. Lord knows there are enough rich lonely men in this town.” Her mouth curved to form a dull smile that didn’t quite reach her eyes.

Amy fell into their usual rhythm. “Not a bad idea,” she remarked. “But where ever do you expect to find this prince charming?” She leaned her head back, her face taking on a pensive look.

“Well,” Hannah said, her eyes beginning to twinkle as she curled her legs under her in the threadbare Queen Anne chair, “I thought I might advertise for him.” She giggled then, a sound that shaved ten years off her age.

Staring at her a moment, Amy finally broke the silence by saying, “You seem to have given this some thought.”

She nodded. “Actually, I have had plenty of time for thinking as of late. So, give me your honest opinion of this.” She reached for the one subject spiral notebook that she was rarely without and flipped toward the back. She placed a flattened palm against her chest and cleared her throat for effect. “DWF, mother of two seeks well to do M, race unimportant, for live-in relationship due to sudden turn of finances (dead beat ex) and underemployment. Skills include entertaining, cooking, cleaning, witty intellectual conversations, and other desirable qualities.” With her reading completed, she turned to Amy for a reaction.

Her friend studied her for a moment and tried to hide her shock. Up until that moment, she had truly believed they were speaking in jest. “Well, Hannah, honey…” Her mouth gaped open as she tried to formulate the words she needed to express her sentiments. “It was…thorough?”

“And honest,” Hannah said nodding proudly.

“You know,” she said slowly, “there is such a thing as being too honest.”

Hannah studied what she had written with a furrowed brow, the pencil eraser tapping against her small full lips. Amy continued. “And I noticed that you didn’t mention age, weight, or measurements.”

“It shouldn’t matter,” she said quietly. “I want people who don’t care about that.”

“You do realize that your body is one of your greatest assets, right?” Amy urged, studying the woman who had been her best friend since grade school. She shook her head. Hannah Matthews always underestimated herself. “I mean the rack alone…” She stretched out her open palms before her and gestured. “Come on.”

“Too big,” she said sadly. “Brett always said that more than a handful was a waste.”

“Brett is a moron. And isn’t he dating some surgically enhanced stripper now?” She glared defiantly. “And what about that tiny waist?” She could see Hannah opening her mouth to dispute yet another aspect of her figure. She threw up her hands, a combination of surrender and dismay. “Fine. Just trust me when I say someone will more than appreciate what you have to offer.”

“Yes, but let’s not forget my baggage.” She glanced out the window to watch her kids frolic in the meager two inches of snow that arrived over night and effectively shut down the entire city of Charlotte.

“Any man would be lucky to raise your kids and have the privilege to love and be loved by you.” She sighed when she saw that Hannah had tuned out and was walking to the patio to call the kids inside.

Moments later peeking around the corner from the kitchen, Hannah glanced at Amy. “Want hot chocolate?”

“Is it from the Cocoa-latte machine?” She asked eagerly, rising up off the couch, grateful that she had the thought to purchase this gift for her friend after Brett left.

“Isn’t it always?” Hannah smiled as Amy followed her into the kitchen and took a seat at the card table covered with a simple red-checkered vinyl tablecloth. She explored the cabinets as the kids stripped down in the utility room, searching for something to accompany the cocoa. Within minutes, she had arranged some frosted graham crackers on a plate and offered Amy the opportunity to lick the spatula she had used to spread the fudge frosting.

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