HOME       ABOUT       TRIBUTE      APPLICATION       DONATE

CHAPTER 1

FRIENDS WITH BENEFITS

Dangling our feet in the pool water, we take turns passing a bong back and forth – exhaling clouds bigger than our heads. The warm sun and clouds of floating smoke put us in a dreamlike trance. We relocate to the poolside chaise lounges for a much-needed nap.

I awaken a few hours later under the blaring hot orb. Alaia stirs at the same time.

“Yes, sis. I needed that,” she exclaims as she stretches toward the sky. “You’re not really friends until you’ve slept together,” she adds with a wink.

“We are friends with sleeping benefits,” I respond with a wink of my own.

After helping my friend and business partner gather up all of her new Mochawear gear, I send her back into the world with hugs, kisses, and an invitation to return for more naps whenever she’d like.

I wave goodbye from the front steps then stretch and yawn my way to the kitchen— stopping before my island to marvel at its modern updates: New cabinets, countertops, backsplash, and floor tiles. All new appliances gleam back at me. What better way to christen the renovation than with a smoothie?

As I load up the blender with fruit, an overwhelming sense of appreciation washes over me. Business has been so good lately. Ever since I hired that personal assistant, it’s really taken off. As if she heard my thoughts, Lila’s name and picture suddenly light up on my phone screen. New video chat request.

“Hey, cute stuff. I was just thinking about you. How’s it hanging?”

“Oh, you know, just living the dream. Our dream.”
2