· Anne Watson comes home from work to find her boyfriend cheating.
· While taking a shower, he explains why he's so unhappy in their relationship, i.e. his excuse for cheating.
· Determined to fix her relationship, she speaks to her four closest friends, all male, for their advice.
· She decides to start running with her best friend, Brian, every morning.
· Each of her friends helps her with an aspect of trying to reclaim her relationship, though noone wants her back with Ryan.
· They show her proof of how much of a dog he really is. It is the breaking straw for her.
· Now determined for revenge, she continues everything that she was doing before, only now it's to mess with her ex's head, not to have him back.
· Throughout the story, she realizes that she is in love wtih her best friend, who has been in love with her for five years.
· As they try to move from friends to lovers, she also learns that her other close friend, Ben, has been harboring feelings for her for years, but won't do anything out of loyalty to Brian.
· When Anne is finally ready to move on with her life and leave her apartment for good, Ryan cannot accept it and attempts to rape her.
· Ben saves her and the book ends with her ex in jail and Anne now living with Brian, her now boyfriend.
· Set up for love triangle between Ben and Brian.
After a horrible day at work, I came home to find my boyfriend...in a curious position. After determining why he was unhappy, I, Anne Watson, decided to try and fix our broken relationship. My four closest male friends, however, had another idea. Revenge.
**Content Warning: This book contains a sexual assault scene and mature material. **
Brian and Annie dancing:
We made our way to the dance floor, Brian taking my hand, leading me. The dance started off very innocently. The two of us danced with a respectable distance between us. He smiled, spinning me out, and I found myself smiling back. One dance turned into two, which turned into three. By the third dance, he innocently put his hand out, and I took it, allowing him to pull me into his dance space. With his hand on my lower back, his other hand clasped in mine, he lead me around the dance floor. We were close, but still just dancing. He spun me and then pulled me back into his embrace. It was good, ’ fashioned, harmless fun with no body-to-body contact. We still hadn’t crossed that boundary yet- where two friends start acting a little more than friends. You might not be able to clearly define that boundary, but when you saw it, you knew it.
Three more songs went by in the same manner. Brian spun me out, but only half way, and then moved in to close the space. This left him at my back. He was still holding on to my hand, though, as I felt his chest against my back, the touching nearly feather light. I could feel his presence, but he was not grinding against me. I felt fine, and this was fun. Ryan hated dancing, so we never went out to clubs. And anything he hated was exactly what I wanted to do now.
Our rhythm synced perfectly, and we moved as one. I think it was just because we have known each other for so long. It was easy for us to predict the other’s dance moves. After another two dances, however, his free hand gently moved down my neck, over my shoulder, and down my arm, and I stopped breathing for a few seconds. His hand continued trailing down, resting on my hip.
Perhaps it was the several drinks I had, the dimly lit club giving an intimate feel. Maybe it was my hormones racing from the bartender, or the cardamom still wafting through the room, or the fact that we’re in a strip club. Or maybe it was just Brian, his smell and touches a source of comfort during my emotional upheaval and my fear of losing him. Whatever the reason as I listened to In the Dark, I started grinding against him. It wasn’t deep or intense, just a very slow, light grind, moving my hips in figure eights. Our legs and thighs were barely touching. But, this was crossing the friendship boundary, even my fuzzy brain figured out.
A song or two later, and I came up with the brilliant plan of turning around, sliding my arms around his neck, moving my body against his frame. Just our thighs and hips actually touched, my legs between his, space between our upper bodies, but God help me; I certainly had never done this with him before…or anyone else for that matter. Finally, having enough courage to meet his gaze, I realized his eyes were heavily hooded, his breaths long and deep. There was a part of my brain screaming that this was wrong. He was my best friend. The other side of my brain asked me what was wrong. We were not grinding hard; he wasn’t practically impregnating me. The other side screamed that I was making up excuses.
That’s when I told Brian I need to use the ladies’ room; I needed to clear my head and get some perspective. He told me he would sit down on the couch we were on before, and I nodded, making my way for the door.
Inside the bathroom, the entire room was decorated in frosted glass, as were the stalls. I splashed some water on my face and looked at myself in the mirror.
“What are you doing?” I asked myself.
I tried not to give men mixed signals, but, this was confusing. I told myself that this was all happening because my head wasn’t on right, because of everything that happened this weekend. I was just looking to unwind. Besides, I had seen plenty of friends dance that way before, and they didn’t go home with the guy.