The Fifth Avenue Series Boxed Set

The Fifth Avenue Series Boxed Set by Christopher Smith Read Free Book Online Page A

Book: The Fifth Avenue Series Boxed Set by Christopher Smith Read Free Book Online
Authors: Christopher Smith
“What did you say?”
    “When this gets back to Celina,” he said. “You and me dancing.   Do you think she’ll be jealous?”
    She was incredulous.   “Why don’t you ask her?” she said.
    And the music stopped.
    *    *    *
    While Jack showered, Celina kicked off her shoes, sat on her parents’ bed and allowed her gaze to wander around the bedroom.   It had her mother’s touch, which meant it was just enough without being overwhelming.   Only one thing caught her eye—the photographs of the family framed in silver on the Chippendale side table.
    She slid off the bed and chose one of the photographs.   It was of her and Eric and they were holding hands outside the old Redman International Building on Madison.   Celina could remember the day clearly.   Only hours after the picture was taken, she and Eric had made love for the first time.   Then, Celina was convinced she was giving herself to a man she would spend the rest of her life with.   Now, I don’t know what I want.
    She put the picture back on the table and wondered if Eric was here.   She herself had asked him to come.   Although they were no longer seeing each other, it seemed pointless that there should be any animosity between them.   Celina, in fact, still loved Eric.   If he hadn’t pressed so hard for marriage, there wouldn’t have been a separation.
    She wondered why he was in such a hurry.   At twenty-nine, she was too young to marry—let alone to have the children Eric wanted.   But she would have them and if Eric could learn to be patient, Celina would have them with him.   Until that day, Celina planned on living her life—and she’d do it single, whether Eric Parker liked it or not.
    From across the room, the bathroom door opened and Jack Douglas, freshly showered and wearing George’s dinner jacket, stepped into the bedroom.   Celina thought how handsome he looked.   His sandy hair more tousled than groomed, Jack Douglas had an appealingly athletic build.   She guessed him to be somewhere in his early thirties.  
    He smoothed his hands down the front of the jacket. “What do you think?” he asked.
    “Very sophisticated,” Celina said.   “You clean up well.   Now let’s go down and find my father.   I’m sure he wants to talk to you.”

    Leana Redman moved through the crowd and was amused by how the crowd parted for her.   I could be Moses , she thought.   And they’re the Red Sea.
    There were faces she recognized and most of them were either stoned on whatever drug was circulating, or had been lifted so many times, a strange, permanent smile was on their lips.
    She nodded at a man who made million-dollar-deals during the day and was rumored to frequent sex clubs during the night.   She passed a countess who gave hundreds of thousands of dollars to a teenage delinquency fund, yet was known to steal repeatedly from Bloomingdale’s and Saks.   To her right was a sheik who loved his many wives—and how their clothes fit his plump body.   And to her left, she heard a woman saying, “Brenda?   Getting married?   That’s absurd.   Let me tell you something about Brenda.   She’s so butch, she rolls her own tampons.”
    Leana looked at the woman who said this and wanted to tell her friends that she might as well be talking about herself.   It seemed to her that there was more corruption, drug abuse and twisted social values in Fifth Avenue Society than in any other New York social class.
    Across the lobby she could see Harold Baines, Redman International’s VP for International Affairs, speaking at a dimly lit corner table with his wife, Helen.   Leana smiled.   Finally, someone she not only knew, but adored.
    Harold had been with Redman International ever since she could remember and they always had been close.   When she was a child and made one of her rare visits to her father’s old headquarters on Madison, Harold made it a point

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