Screwmates(65)

By: Kayti McGee


I still can’t freaking believe I funded a semester’s worth of French travels with my freaking Tumblr page.

Did I once say life is hell? Life is just a real surprise, is all. Surprises around every corner. I stand and stretch, rolling my shoulders to relieve the tension of typing for so long. Yeah, I know, cry me a river, right? I was typing the end of my book at a little café in France while my boyfriend arranged outings and wandered through bookshops.

I scrape my hair, now faded to the most appropriate shade of lavender, up into a ponytail and toss my computer in my bag. It’s only a short drive to the vineyard, and I share my concern with Marc on the way.

“I mean, have we gotten bad at wine? Do we get worse at wine the better we get at sex?” I feel that these are legit concerns.

“Oh. No, I slipped that wine guy a twenty to give me the tasting notes. You didn’t guess I was cheating? We are really, really bad at wine.” He laughs, and merrily slides into a parking space. “Ready?”

I burst out laughing, and open my door. In retrospect, it makes way more sense that an afternoon of reading books didn’t magically teach us how to taste. The point is that we just enjoy it, I suppose. An extremely stereotypical Frenchman greets us with the expected air kisses and glasses of something crisp and white, then begins to lead us around. I’m only half paying attention to him, because who can listen to a lecture when the sun is shining and you’re stepping through grapevines and you’re turning a corner and someone is presenting you with a diamond, and—

Wait. What?

“Look. We already share an address. I think it would be very economical if we shared a last name as well,” Marc says, grinning as widely as I’ve ever seen. I slosh my wine over the edge of my glass in my haste to get it on my finger. Holy cats! I accept, of course, because I may have brought the color, but Marc is the frame to my life. He is the solid thing, the path forward, the constant in my days that brings meaning.

He’s also really not poetic, so when I add an epilogue to Screwmates, I’ll change his wording.





Acknowledgments





All the usual suspects came together to help this book get finished in a semi-timely (LOLOL) manner. I am truly blessed to have so many amazing people in my corner. Laurelin Paige, this book was supposed to be half you, and I hope it didn’t suffer too much without your expert touch all over it. Melanie Harlow, my personal little plot bunny, thank you for making me so welcome when I inevitably show up in the D during every single book. I never want to write one without you. Sierra Simone, no one truly understands the Void the way you do, because you are my dark-soul-sister even though you make a convincing cheerleader when I need one.

Ang Oh, the kindest, gentlest editor—I owe you many bourbons. Candi Kane, nothing runs without you. Especially on Tuesdays. Jen McCoy and Paula Dawn round out our little Pentagon of Porkers, and I look forward to laughing with you guys every day.

Rebecca Friedman. My girlcrush is truly outsized. Ask anyone. Wait, no. Don’t. It’ll be creepy.

I would not even have a book if I didn’t have Becca Hensley Mysoor. Here, there, and everywhere. You are the Madison in my head, except in real life you are funnier, sweeter, and more inspiring than any character on a page. Also, you threaten to beat me with wet noodles when I don’t work every day, which is really a good thing for my productivity. Thank you for being in my corner, and for all your notes, my frond til the ond. This book is many times better for your patient advice.

All the kittens in my Red Light District (join us on Facebook!), I am so delighted to have you. It’s the greatest gift an author can have, to know people truly care about their books, and cocktail recipes, and the occasional turtle-porn.

And as always, without bloggers and readers, there are no books. Thank you for reading, for reviewing, for sharing, for commenting. I am so grateful for all you do.