Queen of Babble Gets Hitched, by Cabot, Meg
- ISBN: 9780060852023 | 006085202X
- Cover: Hardcover
Whatever souls are made of, his and mine are the same.—Emily Brontë (18181848), British novelist and poet
Chaz," I say, poking the man in the tuxedo who lay sprawled across my bed. "You have to get out of here."
Chaz brushes my hand away as if it's annoying him. "Mom," he says. "Stop it. I told you, I already took out the trash."
"Chaz." I poke him some more. "I mean it. Wake up. You have to go."
Chaz wakes up with a start. "Wha— Where am I?" He looks blearily around the room until his unfocused gaze finally comes to rest on me. "Oh. Lizzie. What time is it?"
"Time for you to go," I say, grabbing hold of his arm and pulling on it. "Come on. Get up."
But I might as well be pulling on an elephant. He won't budge.
"What's going on?" Chaz wants to know. I have to admit, it's not easy, being so mean to him. He looks downright adorable in his tuxedo shirt, all stubbly faced and confused, with his dark hair sticking up in tufts all over his head. He squints at me. "Is it morning already? Hey—why do you still have your clothes on?"
"Because nothing happened between us," I say, relieved that it's true. I mean, stuff happened. But my Spanx are still on, so not that much stuff. Thank God. "Come on, get up. You have to go."
"What do you mean, nothing happened between us?" Chaz looks offended. "How can you say that? That's my beard burn you're wearing."
I lift a hand guiltily to my face. "What? Oh my God. You're kidding, right?" "No, I'm not kidding. You're completely chafed." A look of self-satisfaction spreads across his face as he stretches his arms. "Now come over here and let's continue where we left off before you so rudely fell asleep, which I'm going to try not to hold against you, although I will admit it's going to be difficult, and will probably necessitate punishment in the form of a spanking if I can figure out how to get those things off you. What did you call them again? Oh, yeah. Spanx." Chaz brightens. "Hey, how appropriate."
But I've already dived for the bathroom and am examining my face in the mirror over the sink.
He's totally right. The entire lower half of my face is bright pink from where Chaz's stubble rubbed it as we made out like a couple of teenagers in the back of the taxi on our way home from the wedding last night.
"Oh God!" I cry, staggering back into the bedroom. "Do you think he noticed?""Do I think who noticed what?" Chaz has seized me by the wrist, pulled me over, and is fumbling with the tiny buttons to my gown.
"Luke!" I cry. "Do you think he noticed I've got beard burn all over my face?""How would Luke notice that?" Chaz asks. "He's in France. How do you get this thing off, anyway?"
"He's not in France!" I cry, swatting at Chaz's hands. "He was just downstairs. That was him, at the door!"
"The door?" Chaz pauses in his attempt to disrobe me, looking more adorably confused than ever. Not that I have any business noticing how adorable Chaz is. "Luke's at the door?"
"No, not anymore," I say, swatting his hands away once more. "But he's coming back in half an hour. And that's why you have to leave now. He doesn't know you're here. And I want to keep it that way." I wrestle his tuxedo jacket from beneath the knee he's resting on it and hold it out for him. "So if you wouldn't mind putting this on and kindly vacating the premises—"
"Wait a minute." Chaz raises a dark eyebrow. "Wait just a minute here. Are you honestly trying to tell me that you and Mr. Romance are getting back together?"
"Of course we're getting back together," I say, throwing an urgent glance at the clock. Twenty-five minutes! Luke will be back in twenty-five minutes! He only went in search of a Starbucks to grab us coffees and a couple of Danish . . . or whatever it is Starbucks has available on New Year's Day. Which, for all I care, could be rancid pig fat in plastic containers. What does it matter? "Why else do you think I've been standing here asking you to please get up? I don't want him to know you spent the night—or that you gave me beard burn."
"Lizzie." Chaz is shaking his head. But he's putting his tuxedo jacket on. Thank God. "He's not a little boy. You can't protect him forever. He's going to have to find out about us sometime."
Icy tentacles grip my heart. "Us? What us? Chaz . . . there is no us.""What do you mean, there is no us?" He looks up from the inside coat pocket he'd been investigating, evidently in search of his wallet. "Did we, or did we not, just spend the night together?"
"Yes," I say, with another exasperated glance at the clock. Twenty-four minutes! And I have to wash my hair. I'm sure there's confetti in it from the wedding. Not to mention, I probably have raccoon rings of mascara around my eyes. "But I already told you. Nothing happened."
"Nothing?" Chaz looks wounded. "I distinctly remember holding you tenderly in my arms and kissing you beneath a sky full of falling stars. You call that nothing?"
"Those were balloons," I remind him. "Not stars."
"Whatever. I thought we said we were going to work on the physical part of our relationship."
"No. You said that. I said we'd both just come out of painful breakups and needed time to heal."
Chaz reaches up and runs a hand through his hair, causing it to stand even more comically on end. Plus, confetti falls out of it and onto my bedspread. "Then what was all that kissing in the cab about?"
He has a valid point. I'm not sure what all that kissing in the cab was about.Or why I enjoyed it so much, either.Queen of Babble Gets Hitched. Copyright © by Meg Cabot. Reprinted by permission of HarperCollins Publishers, Inc. All rights reserved. Available now wherever books are sold.
Excerpted from Queen of Babble Gets Hitched by Meg Cabot
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