â€œSo, tell me, who is the luscious guy dancing with your mother?â€ Arnie leaned over the battered wooden bar and handed Susan a martini (gin, very dry, one onion), a slivovitz (with a twist of lime), and a diet coke.
â€œMy fiancÃ©, as a matter of fact,â€ said Susan.
â€œReally,â€ said Arnie. â€œI had no idea.â€
â€œI was planning on waiting for you, darling, but you are taken these days, as I recall?â€™â€™ Susan eyed the drinks, trying to decide if she could balance all three or should make another trip, and avoid an icy bath.
â€œYes, I suppose Eric might be irritated if I brought you home. Now if I brought home your fiancÃ©â€¦.â€
â€œHa, ha.â€ She picked up the martini and slivovitz and headed for the table. When she returned for the cola, Arnie was still slavering.
â€œMy, my, my, he does move nicely. But, Suzie, this guy does not seem your type.â€
â€œOh sure, I can see how this is going to go. But tell me anyway: why, pray tell, not?â€
â€œWell, look at him; heâ€™s smooth, heâ€™s suave, he dresses in Armani, he drinks slivovitzâ€¦â€
On the dance floor, her mother and her fiancÃ© swirled in one anotherâ€™s arms. They did make a striking couple, her mother dressed in a short black cocktail dress, her fiancÃ© in his expensive suit coat.
â€œAnd Iâ€™m strictly blue jeans and coca cola?â€
â€œWell, not blue jeans at the moment, girl, but â€¦â€
â€œI know what you mean. Donâ€™t you believe in love at first sight?â€
â€œHoney, you know I do. I think Iâ€™m in love now.â€
â€œArnie, knock it off.â€ As Susan picked up her drink, the music stopped, and her fiancÃ© kissed her motherâ€™s hand and led her back to the table. He pulled out a chair for her mother, and then pulled out Susanâ€™s chair, bowing slightly from the waist.
â€œI can see where Susan gets her natural grace. Alice, I may call you Alice, may I? Alice, then, it was very kind of you to allow Susan and I to come to your book signing party.â€
Susanâ€™s mother stroked her hand across her flawless chignon. â€œIâ€™m so surprised that you came; Susan, I believe this is the first time youâ€™ve come to any of my signings.â€
â€œOh, it was my idea, Alice. I thought it might be just the place to meet you.â€
â€œDarling, Derek is a charming man. So continental, so different from the boys you usually date.â€
â€œMother, Iâ€™m 29, I donâ€™t date boys.â€
â€œBy comparison, dear, by comparison. I approve, if youâ€™re seeking my approval. But your sister might hate him. She has execrable taste in men."
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