03 May 2013


When we drink, we grow. It's something Shelby knew but couldn't place as she stared at the pink punch in the absurdly crystal bowl next to the crudités and caviar.

This wasn't her place, among heiresses and stockbrokers, and certainly not lamely standing before a bowl of champagne and sherbet, what passes for punch in this country. All hopes of her meeting a dashing European had been dashed when she noted that all of the male guests had a plus-one and a ring to prove it. Instead, she just took up smoking and was discussing the subtle difference between menthols by Camel and Marlboro when a dark fellow said something.

He was talking to someone else, but the accent was strangely familiar like that dream she'd had in Spain about a boy from Tuscany who taught her how to pick grapes from a vine. "Just like that," he'd said, staring deeply into her soul with crystal blue eyes like those you'd make a punch bowl from if you were some evil dictator who yearned for crystal bowls made from the eyes of Italians.

But she digressed.