"Honey," Alex said patting Celia's arm, "be
"I mean no offense," she said, "it's just that most Americans
are so aggressively sure that their way is the right
"I don't follow you." Lita said picking up her glass of
"She means," Lourdes spoke up. "The fact that you pointed out
her accent and was oblivious to the fact that you, as an
American, or Latina, have one of your own." She smiled at Celia.
"Isn't that right?"
"Ladies-" Alex tried to say.
"Well I meant no offense." Celia said again. "Shall we try
this again?" She asked, squeezing Alex's leg. Lourdes watched as
she rubbed her hand up and down his thigh. She tried to look away
as quickly as possible, but Alex still caught her
"Let's start over. Lourdes," Celia said, "tell me what it is,
that you do for a living?"
"Ick!" Lita said, making a funny face. "That is such an awful
question, don't you hate it when somebody ask you that?" She
turned to Lourdes.
Lourdes smiled, agreeing with Lita, but she turned to Celia
and said, "I cook."
"You cook?" Celia asked stifling back a
Lourdes clenched her jaw and said nothing. Was that a dig at
Celia continued talking. "The way Gabe talks about you, I
would have thought that you were a rocket scientist or
that's your job, honey." Alex
Lourdes and Lita looked at each other. Alex was staring off
into space, waiting for things to go bad.
"Why would you think that?" Lourdes
"Well," Celia said pausing, "Gabe goes on about how smart you
are, how intelligent, how you challenge him in many ways, so I
just thought, that maybe you were in a different profession. But
no, it's great, good for you."
Lita and Lourdes looked at each other again. "Gee thanks."
Lourdes said smiling. "But I wasn't looking for
"She didn't mean it like that." Alex
"Really." Lourdes muttered.
"I apologize if that came off as rude," Celia said, "but I
always thought I heard something about you being a
"Not really," Lourdes said, "I dabble in some
Alex smirked, not giving himself away, but Lita laughed out
"Did I miss something?" Celia asked.
"No," Lita said, shaking her head. "It's just this girl's a
riot!" She said referring to Lourdes. "Do you really walk around
like this all the time?"
Celia looked back and forth between all of them, still
waiting to be let in on the joke.
"She's right." Alex said pointing to Lita. "Asking what
somebody does for a living is a mundane question, and this one,"
he said pointing at Lourdes, "is being way too
"What do you mean?" Celia asked.
"She says she cooks and you assume she works at some soup
kitchen." Alex said annoyed.
"I never said that!" Celia sounded offended. "I never said
that." She said to Lourdes.
"Well that's how it came out." He said. "Am I right?" He
Lourdes said nothing. "Yeah you're right." Lita said. "But I
can see how it's easy to draw your own conclusions, when girlie
over here," she nodded at Lourdes, "gives the simplest answers
possible. Being too discreet, is not charming." She grinned at
Lourdes continued to be silent. How did the focus, suddenly
turn to her?
"Yeah, but she is a very accomplished, in her own right.
Culinary school, classical french training."
"Lita-" Lourdes tried to say, letting her know it wasn't
worth it. She grabbed her hand. "It's okay, you can stop,
"No!" Lita said. "It's true, you shouldn't sell yourself
short. She cooks, she bakes," she said pointing at the pie, "she
even caters. And," she said looking at Lourdes beaming, "she does
more than just dabble in writing, in fact you should see the
story she's working on now."
"Lita!" Lourdes said. Lourdes looked at Lita pleading with
her eyes wide. Lita gave her a devilish grin. "You're fantastic,"
she said, "why can't I share that with
"Is that so?" Celia asked intrigued. "You two seem very
close. How long have you known each other?"
"Oh, I don't know," Lita said, "but it feels like forever,
paused, not quite sure where this direction was heading, but she
decided to play along. "Right." She said. Lita put her hand on
Lourdes' and gave it a squeeze. Reassuring her that she wouldn't
take this too far.
Celia glanced at Alex, he was biting his nails. "Have you
read any of her work?" She asked.
Lourdes looked at him, waiting on his
He looked at Lita, then Lourdes, then Celia. "Why would I
read her work?" He glanced at Lourdes. "We barely know each
"So tell us all about it." Celia said
"Nah," Lourdes said, "I'm shy about those type of
"You can't be too shy," Alex butted in, "if Lita has already
"She hasn't seen much." Lourdes said glancing, Lita's way.
"It was just the circumstances."
"But you have read some of it," Celia asked Lita, "what's it
"Yeah." Alex chipped in, raising his eyebrows at Lourdes.
"What is it about?"
Lita looked at Lourdes smiling brightly. "I can say, even
though the plot hasn't quite revealed itself to me yet....the
characters are funny and over the top and I love every single
thing about it."
Lourdes looked at Lita and smiled. Her comment was sincere
and she could tell that she meant it. Lourdes set down her drink.
"Excuse me," she said, "I need to use the ladies room." Lourdes
stood up to escape quickly. She began to walk
"It's right around the corner." Celia
Lourdes turned around halfway, pausing slightly. "Right." She
said. "Thanks." She turned back around and
"Funny." Celia said, watching her walk away. "She knows
exactly where she's going, you didn't even have to tell
Lita looked at Alex alarmed, waiting for his
"She is dating Gabe," he said, "you know, one of my
closest friends, remember? Obviously she's been here before, of
course she knows where the loo is."
Lita breathed a sigh of relief.
"Of course." Celia said. They were all silent for a few
moments. "And what about you Lita?"
"What about me?" Lita asked as Lourdes came back to sit
"What do you do for a living?"
Lourdes took a bite of her pie, she was going to try and
focus on being more pleasant.
"I'm a prostitute." Lita said.
Lourdes started choking.
"Are you alright?" Lita asked slapping her back hard, while
"Yea-" Lourdes choked out, holding her
"Are you sure you're okay?" Celia asked, leaning forward in
her chair, even though she was surprised by Lita's
Lourdes nodded her head, trying to
"Come on," Alex said, "you're just having a laugh at us
"No, no." Lita said shaking her head.
"Well this night just got interesting." He said. Celia gave
him a disapproving look.
"Lita-" Lourdes tried to choke out, while she cleared her
"It's okay." Lita said. "I don't mind, I want to share. Yes,
I suck dick, have sex, take it up the ass....all for
Celia had her hand on her chest, shocked in disbelief. Alex
took a big gulp of his drink, trying not to
"I-," she tried to get out, "I... don't really know what to
say about that."
"That's a first." Alex said.
"Shh." Celia tried to hush him.
Lita leaned in. "It's okay you two, you don't have to say
anything. I'm just fucking with you!"
Lourdes burst out laughing. So did Celia and Alex, but they
had no idea that they were laughing for two different
"Oh, you're wicked!" Celia said to Lita.
Lita smiled at Celia, and then she smiled at Lourdes. "You
have no idea." She said clinking her glass with Lourdes. Lourdes
took a large sip of her wine. This is the last time that she'll
take Lita anywhere.
"So?" Lita asked. "How's your career shaping up
"It's just fine." Alex said.
now he's being modest." Celia said rubbing her hand
on his chest. "Things have never been better for
"Is that right?" Lita said. "Well that must keep you on your
toes, I bet the girls are all over him."
"It comes with the territory." Alex said. "I can handle
"And he has all that he needs right here." Celia said resting
her head on his shoulder. Alex smiled and kissed her on the
Lourdes continued to sip her drink.
"Well he is one tall drink of water." Lita said smiling at
the both of them. "If I were you, I'd keep a eye on
"Well we have a tremendous amount of trust between us." Celia
said still holding on to him. "He's a wonderful
"Yes I can see that." Lita smiled, but her tone of voice was
"You two seem great together." Lourdes said smiling at them.
She looked at Alex. "Well done." She said. "You have a beautiful
girlfriend, you have a beautiful home," she said pausing, "you
have a beautiful life." She looked back and forth between the
both of them. "Cherish what you have while you have it. Because
it's gone before you know it."
Alex stared at her but said nothing.
"Oh, don't you worry." Celia said, still holding on to him.
"This one's not going anywhere."
"More drinks?" Alexsander stood up. "I'll get them." He said,
walking away as quickly as possible.
"Celia doesn't think you like me very much." Alexsander said
once they were alone. He was standing too close and Lourdes was
at the end of her rope.
"I don't like you much, right now." Lourdes said piling up
dishes. Celia had took Lita on a tour around the
to like her." Alex responded, taking dishes away from
Lourdes stopped and turned, her long black hair flying. "Well
she seems like a spectacular woman who is very confused and
"We're all that, in one way or another," Alex said, "who do
you know that isn't?"
"You." Lourdes said tossing down some forks. "You seem to be,
a happy go lucky guy."
"Lourdes," he said closing the door and pulling her into
another room and closing that door too, "I stood by for months
while you and Gabe carried on in front of me like two star
crossed lovers, and I never once reacted like
"That was different!" She whispered.
"How is that different?"
"Because you don't force a woman to tell you that she loves
you, when you practically have a fiance dangling on your
"You said you wouldn't do this!" He said. "I thought that we
were going to go by our own rules."
"That was in the past." She said. "Before you had a
girlfriend. Before you deceived me so exquisitely. And yes, we
were going to play by different standards, but they have to apply
to both of us!"
"So what are you saying," he whispered back angrily, "that
you can have someone in your bed at all times but I can't have
someone in mines?"
"No you can't!" She said trying to whisper, but she was
becoming louder. "You can't have me, and Gabe and Celia and
fifteen fucking Hollywood whores!"
"Why? Because you deserve to have it all and I don't?" He was
starting to get upset, but not dignifying her last
"No it's not about that! It's about being decent enough, to
have the balls to make it work with the right person! And when
you have twenty bitches dangling from your dick, it's pretty
obvious that the person that you don't to be serious with is me!"
She was shaking, she couldn't do this
"You seem to forget something," he said "you've already made
the decision of who you'd rather be with. You were never going to
"Your right." Lourdes sniffed. "And it was the smartest
decision I ever made." She threw her hands up in the air."Look
how things turned out in the end!"
"Don't say that." He said, trying to calm himself down. "You
don't mean that."
do." She said. "I do." She repeated with more conviction. "I sat
through this shit tonight, watching the two of you, and all I
could think of is, this is real, and Alex and I-" She tossed her
hands in the air. "You make me so afraid to care about you...and
yet, I'm still terrified to lose
Alex came around the desk and sat on the edge. He grabbed
Lourdes hand and pulled her towards him. "It doesn't have to be
so black and white," he said, "they're many shades of gray and
you and I are just different."
looked down at the hand she was holding, she kissed it softly and
let it go. She couldn't believe she was about to do this. "I've
turned myself into a liar. Because I'm not special. I'm not
different, as much as I seem to be." She took a step back. "But
here I am, standing here like some bad cliche. And deep down I
know why we can never really be together...but in my heart of
hearts..." Her voice broke, but this was no time to lose courage.
"I do want you to be with me. And
only me. I want you to feel about me the exact
same way I feel about you." Tears came to her eyes. "And I don't
really want to acknowledge who you are at
Alex stood up and moved towards her. He cupped her face in
his hands. "I think you see me." He said resting his head on
hers. "I think you know me. And I think you already know that I
care about you. More than care about you."
"It isn't enough to keep on doing what we're doing," she
breathed resting her hands on his chest and closing her eyes,
"what do you want?"
Alex said nothing, but he kissed her.
"No," she whispered, "that's not
"Why?" He asked still not letting go.
"Because I don't know how to be around you and not feel so
betrayed by you." She whined. But he kept kissing her. There
wasn't very much fight left in her as she eventually gave in and
kissed him back.
They both turned fast, Lita was standing in the door way. She
must have snuck up on them she was so quiet. "Is everything
alright in here?" She asked.
Lourdes wiped the tears off her face quickly and pulled away
from Alex. "Yes everything is great." She walked up to Lita and
Lita grabbed her hand. "Looks like we should call it a night."
She said glaring at Alexsander.
"I think you're right." Lourdes said trying to put on a
smile. "It's late, let's go."
"Nice meeting you again." Lita called over her shoulder to
Alex, even though she didn't mean a word of it. She tried to pull
Lourdes out of the door.
"Hold on." Alex said to Lourdes. They paused. Lita released
her hand begrudgingly and kept going.
Lourdes turned back to Alex and he walked over to her. "You
can't just say, what you said to me and walk out of my life
Lourdes exhaled slowly. "What I said and what I want is
totally irrelevant." She said still wanting to make a clean
break. "We've made our choices. Let's just end things here. It's