SNEAK PEEK of the full preface and first chapter of Forever After!
Forever After (ARC Sneak Peek!) Not official.
They say new love euphoria doesn’t last.
That the hazy intoxication that clouds the heart and mind eventually burns off to reveal an ugly truth. But it’s not your fault you didn’t see it coming. You were hoodwinked and blinded by a dirty duo; two assholes that threw a bag over your head to keep you in the dark about what was really going on.
Emotions and Hormones.
Unbeknown to you, Emotions teamed up with Hormones to zip-tie Logic and Reason to a pillar in your basement, then gagged them with a dirty sock so they wouldn’t tell you the truth. The only two friends who could talk you out of making a bad decision had been kidnapped in the fog of new love.
Fast-forward a few years to when Logic and Reason have wiggled loose and come back to warn you. It is at this moment you discover all does not glitter. In fact, some things may actually be dull and drab. The punch has been drunk, you’ve sobered up, and now the gloves have come off. Scars get ripped open, blood spills, and stains begin to accumulate on your relationship. You realize the grass, in fact, wasn’t greener, and all you’ve done is trade one set of problems for another.
I was warned of this. Sternly warned. That having just come out of an unhappy relationship, all of the desperate, lonely places that had been empty for so long would demand immediate attention. I was warned that I would gravitate toward someone that was the opposite of my ex, but who would not necessarily be a match long term. Every part of me would think that new someone is divine; perfectly perfect because he bears no resemblance to old someone.
Fast-forward again to when I would wake up and realize Mr. Perfectly Perfect and I are actually irreconcilably different. I bet there’s a few people out there hoping this happened to Grant and I.
Well, this is where I let you down.
Among other things, complacency, losing the drive to procreate and love passionately have yet to infiltrate our marriage. I’ll let you know if that happens. I’ll write a book about it and call it, Eating Crow: My follies and over-confidence in what I thought was a forever kind of love. But I don’t think so. At least, I don’t anticipate losing interest in my sexy, smoldering, blue-eyed husband. Nor does he seem to be slowing down in his pursuit of me.
He will turn brown and crusty eventually and I suppose I will too. Good thing we’ve made plans to get crusty together. But for now, we’ve been fortunate to have an endless warm rain that keeps our shared ecosystem vibrant and thriving. AKA, our marriage is fucking wet and hot. When the story ended on the last page of AFFAIRYTALE, it was only the beginning.
I wrote AFFAIRYTALE with the promise that I wouldn’t hold back and I didn’t. I just didn’t include everything I originally wrote. What lies on the pages that follow are scenes that ended up too steamy, too redundant for one book, too illegal, or were just plain too embarrassing for publication at the time. Now that I’ve dipped my toes into the shark infested waters of reviews and survived, me and my thicker skin are ready to disclose more secrets and mortifying moments for your entertainment.
Also included is a peek into what our lives are like now, eight years after the ending of AFFAIRYTALE, ninteen years since the night I coincidentally walked into my husband’s wedding.
Keeping within my original intent, I am leaving Dani out of the story as much as possible. In AFFAIRYTALE, not disclosing more about my relationship with my daughter altered the perception of my story in such a way that one reader was compelled to call child protective services and report me as schizophrenic. It happened. For real. In reality, the absence of Dani and my other two other children are an effort to protect them.
If you really want to read about potty-training, lack of sleep, and which kind of breast pump to buy, there are other suitable books. Heartwarming as they may be, I’ve spared you from flooding the pages with stories like The Unflushable Poop. And, like before, I am only including Levi where absolutely necessary to tell this story.
AFFAIRYTALE is a true story about two people meant to be together and fate finding a way to make it happen.
I love our story.
I love us.
It is my pleasure and honor to share a piece of our happiness with you.
This book does not contain a complete story or arc. You may be disappointed by the lack of gripping, heart-beating angst. That story has been told. Which makes this a different kind of book. A bonus book. A collection of the aforementioned deleted scenes, additional essays and interviews.
If you have not read AFFAIRYTALE it will be complete fucking gibberish from here on in. Pour yourself a glass of wine and go one click that bad girl.
I tried to get Grant to write some chapters from his point of view and he said he would, but he never got around to it in the time I required (two years.) If he did, those writings are probably written down somewhere in his office where it’s very unlikely he’ll ever find them again. What’s more likely is that he himself might get lost looking.
However, I still wanted to give you a glimpse into his perspective. So I cornered him and offered him a blow job in exchange for a serious conversation. Over wine, I asked him thoughtful and random questions then wrote down his answers. They crack me up and make me swoon. Isn’t that what is supposed to happen when you’re in a state of uncontrollable love with a man? Everything about him is charming and funny.
In the evenings our living room glows red from the crimson lamp shades. The same shades that tinted the air a sexy hue on the nights we danced naked in my lonesome apartment.
It feels like that was so long ago.
We’ve come so far…
Jamaican Vibrations is playing from the speaker in the kitchen—it’s our music, still. Grant is across from me with his feet kicked up on the oversized ottoman. He’s swirling his wine glass.
C.J.: Okay babe, here is your first question. You ready? When you said, now I know why Tom Cruise jumped on Oprah’s couch, you were smitten. What if how you felt about me was just new love euphoria, not soul mate kind of love?
Grant takes a deep breath, I take a deep breath. There is a tish of anxiety, a palpable anticipation between us when we reminisce about how we began. These conversations bring back the same flutter of excitement and sometimes the same twinge of heartache.
Grant: Well… I’d become very picky. And very sure about what I was looking for. When I found it I didn’t think about the smitteness going away. I knew it wouldn’t.
C.J.: But how could you know it wouldn’t?
Grant: Same reason as you.
C.J.: What’s that?
I take a sip of wine.
Grant: It’s just something that when you know, you know. I always thought that when I found the right person I would just know. And I did.
He smiles and winks.
My physical body turns to liquid and slips down the couch into a puddle of love on the floor. A case could be made that I may be more smitten now than ever.
C.J.: You could have had any woman you wanted. Why me?
He nearly sprays wine past his lips at the question.
Grant: Oh God, of course I couldn’t and it didn’t matter. Honey, can you e-mail me these questions so I can have some time to think about my answers?
God dammit. I knew it. I knew he’d try and get out of it.
C.J.: No. You’ll never get them back to me. Or you’ll write them down and they’ll get eaten by your car or office. This is goin’ down. Tonight.
He sighs. This man knows me. He’s not getting out of it.
Grant: I didn’t pick you. You picked me and honey, I’ve told you these things, you know all the reasons I love you.
C.J.: Yes. But I’d like to hear them again. Please?
Grant: Honey, I’ll tell you all the reasons that I love you and I’ll tell you them every night for the rest of your life if you want me to.
C.J.: Okay. Start now with I love you because…
Grant: I love you because your smart, witty, funny, beautiful…
C.J.: Okay-okay thank you, stop.” I hold up my hand. I actually like it better when you surprise me and tell me those things spontaneously.
Grant: Well, why me? What did you see in me?
He looks at me with one eye ball through his wine glass then takes another sip.
C.J.: Honey, you already know all the reasons. I wrote a 350 page book about all the reasons I love you cementing them into history. But I would love to tell you. Your hot, Dani calls you the walking brain for a reason, you don’t take my shit, your good at everything which makes me feel good at nothing, which pushes me to be better at everything, so I guess it’s a good thing…
He cut me off.
Grant: Okay-okay. Thank you. Stop. You’re right, it’s better as a surprise.
C.J.: Next question. Do you like making love to me?
This question was not on my list but I’m a little drunk it’s just so much fun to watch him squirm when I put him on the spot. It’s one of my favorite things to do. Besides sending him the most inappropriate text messages that I know will lift his day, just a little.
Grant: Are you drunk? Do you even have to ask that?
C.J.: Yes. No. Of course not but it’s fun. Do you like to fuck me sometimes too?
I make a lewd gesture.
Grant: Oh fuck yeah… in the butt. He makes a lewd gesture that tops my lewd gesture. I raise an eyebrow, he knows I’m not impressed and continues. Honey, my neck hurts do you think we could do a little back rub exchange?
C.J.: What kind of back rub exchange? In the bedroom or out here?
There’s a big difference.
Grant: Let’s just start with out here and see where it goes.
C.J.: I really wanted to knock some of these questions out tonight or I’ll never get this done. He’s just gotten up and is walking over here.
Grant: Honey, come on. Its late, we can do your questions another time. I’ll do you first. Just sit right there let me take care of you.
He’s sincere and patronizing simultaneously. I know my planned questions are over, he’s already rubbing my neck, trying to entice me to give in.
C.J.: Of course you’ll do me first. Because then you get to go last. And when you go last, you’re all nice and relaxed and don’t have to get up to do me. I wanna go last. You always get to go last.
He sends up a devious laugh into the air. I know this laugh, well.
Grant: Okay you can go first.
C.J.: I’m just kidding, of course you can go last. Like always. Since you’re a big baby.
This is our routine—one of “our things.” It keeps us hands on with each other in a non-sexual way which may or may not lead further. He digs his thumbs in and gives me the best neck rub.
From there it went something like this…
C.J.: I love our life. He kisses my neck. I sense the vibe of my neck rub is changing… And I love our home.
Grant: Me too. Should we take this back rub into our bedroom?
So much has changed… but the best things have stayed the same.
“ I LOOKED AT HER, AND I KNEW, AS CLEARLY AS I KNOW THAT I WILL DIE, THAT I LOVED HER MORE THAN ANYTHING I HAD EVER SEEN OR IMAGINED ON EARTH.”
―VLADIMIR NAVOKOV, LOLITA
Ugly Duckling Syndrome
AFFAIRYTALE- Deleted Scene