Lilah's List [Secure]
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by Robyn Amos
Description: Dating R&B megastar Reggie Martin was number one on Lilah Banks's top-ten list of things she wanted to do before turning thirty. Now the divorced twenty-nine-year-old was finally going for it. But it wasn't Reggie who came to the door when Lilah and her best friend crashed a private party (another item on The List) at a swanky Manhattan dance club. It was his sexy brother, Tyler. Tyler never forgot the sassy sixteen-year-old who'd pined for his younger brother. But nothing prepared him for the grown-up Lilah. Now Tyler was making a wish list of his own. And the first item on his list? Seduce Lilah Banks into falling in love with him....
eBook Publisher: Harlequin/Kimani Press,
eBookwise Release Date: January 2008
2 Reader Ratings:
Available eBook Formats [Secure - What's this?]: OEBFF Format (IMP) [323 KB]
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Multiple orgasms were among the many things she wasn't going to get to experience before turning thirty, Lilah Banks decided as she stared at her well-worn pink stationery. She hadn't seen her list since college graduation in 1999.
That day she'd crossed off fall in love and neatly tucked The List inside her grandmother's antique jewelry box. The jewelry box had been packed up along with her other college memories and had landed in the attic of the house she'd shared with her husband Chuck.
Until today, that box had remained sealed like Pandora's box. When Lilah had opened it, all of her unfulfilled hopes and dreams had tumbled out with her American University sweatshirt and a ton of old photos.
Lilah had been a good girl and followed the rules. She'd married her college sweetheart, lost her virginity on her wedding night and perfectly balanced her career in real estate with her duties as a domestic goddess. Yet here she was divorced after only six years of marriage.
She smoothed her hand over The List, studying the handwriting of a sixteen-year-old girl as it transformed into that of a young woman in her twenties.
At sixteen she'd wanted to date Reggie Martin—never happened. At eighteen, rebelling against her goody-two-shoes image, she added visit a nude beach to The List—that did happen: spring break 1997. At twenty, the awakening of her social consciousness, she'd wanted to protest a worthy cause—but never did. And at twenty-one, the awakening of her sexual consciousness, came the thing about multiple orgasms.
Lilah shook her head. A lot of really fun things were still unchecked, and her thirtieth birthday was only three weeks away.
"So much for that." She dropped The List to the floor and dug back into the box. She pulled out a framed photo of her kissing Chuck at the Kappa Alpha Psi fraternity cookout senior year.
Saving the frame, she tossed the photo into the waste bin at her right. Her world had been so different then.
At this point in her life she'd expected to be preparing for motherhood instead of readjusting to single life. She should have been remodeling their fabulous three-story suburban home instead of unpacking her Georgetown condo after three months of living out of boxes.
The only part of her life that had stayed on track was her career. As a real estate agent she was at the top of her game, making more money than she knew how to spend. But, with her personal life so deep in the trash bin, it was hard to celebrate that success.
She plunged both hands into the box and pulled out the last picture frame. Lilah and her best friend Angie. They were lying on their dorm room floor, staring up into the camera she'd held above their heads. When the two of them were together, they were trouble. Their parents had nicknamed them Lucy and Ethel because of their madcap adventures.
Angie was still Lilah's best friend, but they'd grown apart since college, and Lilah's marriage had had a lot to do with that.
After college Angie had moved to New York City to pursue her career as the next big name in fashion. Lilah had been certain she'd be spending a lot of time in the Big Apple visiting Angie, and had added a couple of New York-related items to her list. But, over the years, Chuck had always found reasons for Lilah not to make the trip.
Lilah bit back her rising anger over all the times she'd given in to Chuck's emotional manipulations. He'd been needy and insecure, and she'd been spineless and desperate to please. What a pair they'd made.
Her gaze dropped back to the two girls in the picture. Feeling a surge of wistfulness, Lilah grabbed her phone and began to dial. It was ten-thirty on a Saturday night, so the odds were strongly against her friend answering, but it had already been too long since they'd last spoken.
"Angie, I'm so glad you're there."
"Lilah?" croaked a weaker version of Angie's vibrant timbre.
"Did I catch you at a bad time? You sound exhausted."
"It's never a bad time to talk to you, but I was running around the city all day looking for platinum buttons. Not gold. Not silver. Platinum—for some diva who doesn't let any lesser metals touch her skin."
While she was awaiting her big break, Angie was sewing costumes for an off-Broadway playhouse.
"Aw, honey, I'm sorry to hear you had such a rough day."
"Don't worry, as it turns out, Miss Thing doesn't know the difference between silver and platinum after all."
Lilah laughed. "You're so bad."
"That's why you love me."
"Anyway, I was finally unpacking the last of my boxes today, and you'll never believe what I found."
"Um, two million dollars' worth of gold bullion that you're looking to split with your best friend?"
"I found The List."
"The List? Fifty things you wanted to do before thirty? Hey, your thirtieth birthday is next month. How far did you get?"
Lilah scanned the sheet, mentally crossing off a couple of things she'd accomplished in the last eight years. "I guess I'm almost halfway through it."
"November tenth is—" She paused for calculation. "Twenty-one days away. Are you going to try to finish it off?"
Lilah huffed. "Some of these things aren't even possible anymore. Remember item number one—date Reggie Martin?"
Angie sighed. "Well, that one's not impossible. Just a bit of a challenge."
"Ha! Have you listened to your radio lately? Reggie Martin is even more unattainable now than when he was just your average high school stud."
Copyright © 2008 by Robyn Amos.