In Book 2 of Josie Brown’s Totlandia series, five mommies are still in contention to join San Francisco’s most elite moms & tots club. Who will survive the holiday season and make the cut?
In this second book of the Totlandia series, five mommies are just one misstep away from entry into the elite Pacific Heights Moms & Tots Club. Everyone has a scandalous secret to hide, but who will be the next to fall?
As the club’s founder, Bettina, ratchets up the stress level with a series of holiday-themed challenges, the cracks begin to show. Jade’s past catches up to her in the most unlikely of settings. Jillian’s struggles to make ends meet are complicated by Bettina’s demands. Ally’s work and home lives collide, threatening to expose all of her secrets. And Lorna’s already fraying family ties are torn to shreds by a series of devastating events.
With just four spots remaining, will the five remaining ladies turn cutthroat? Or will their newfound friendships be strong enough to help them band together?
Kimberley pulled him into the kitchen. “There’s always a Plan B. We’ll do it right here, on the counter.”
“We prepare food there, remember?” Brady grabbed her arm to pull her away, but instead, she placed his hand on her crotch through her short flimsy dress.
Brady hesitated, then finally nodded. “At least let me put Oliver in his playpen.” He picked up his son and headed for the media room. He was still embarrassed at Jade’s success in seducing him in front of Oliver. The last thing he’d want his son to think was that he was a pushover for any pretty face.
Aw hell, what guy wasn’t?
The moment Brady and Oliver were out the door, Kimberley opened a cabinet and tossed her thong into it.
It was time to give Jade a wake-up call: Brady wasn’t all hers.
Sure, all hell would break loose, but she didn’t give a damn. As long as Brady was determined to keep Oliver in the Pacific Heights Moms & Tots Club, he’d keep her name out of it.
Having disposed of her lavender thong, she lifted up her skirt but kept on her four-inch heels. For a week now, she had practiced poses in the mirror and had come to the conclusion that when she bent over the counter just a little, her long, lean legs and her S-Factor’ed ass would be seen at their best advantage.
By how quickly Brady entered her and how hard he pounded her, she presumed she was right.
Brady saw it differently. Fucking Kimberley was his penance for getting Oliver into the club. Doing it quickly assured that Jade wouldn’t catch them and walk out on him. Otherwise, the club was no good to him anyway.
Well, he had to hand it to Kimberley, her ass was a beautiful sight. And it was hot that she came without panties.
After she headed out the back door, he was still thinking of her ass. He walked into the media room to take his crying son out of his playpen, but before he could reach for the toddler, Oliver hit him in the eye with the ball.
And laughed as Brady cursed in pain.
Under normal circumstances, Vilma, Brady’s twice-a-week maid, would have found Kimberley’s lavender lace thong in the cabinet, since Jade’s knowledge of the kitchen went no further than the refrigerator (milk), the cereal cubby (Frosted Flakes) the flatware drawer, and the cabinet that held the everyday bowls and plates. At that point Vilma would have presumed that SeñorBrady’s gringa esposa had coerced him into the kind of wild and crazy sex enjoyed by the characters in the telenovelas Vilma watched religiously. Always discreet, Vilma would have put the thong in the laundry with Jade’s other unmentionables.
But as it turns out, the afterglow of having pulled off a successful Thanksgiving in front of her new friends put Jade in a domestic mood. Brady, ever the gentleman, had offered to walk Ally and Zoe home while taking Oliver along. She hadn’t expected him to be gone so long, but because he was, it gave Jade more than enough time to run the dishwasher with all the plates and glasses. When the dishwasher beeped to signal they were dry, she was still energized enough to put them away in the cabinet.
That’s when she saw the thong.
Who the fuck’s panties are these? And how did they get here?
She racked her brain for an answer. They weren’t there when she had taken the plates out of the cabinet and set the table early yesterday. And after her grocery run, she hadn’t gone out of the house at all. Instead, she had thrown herself into decorating the house with Martha Stewart-like flair, making corn husk placemats and colorful leaf place cards. Tiny pumpkins were carved out just enough to hold candlesticks, and miniature gourds were hot-glued with cornhusks and feathers to turn them into turkeys, which were then placed in front of the children’s high chairs.
By that evening, she was exhausted, and had fallen into bed beside Brady.
Throughout the day, her friends had been in and out of the kitchen, prepping and warming their dishes before setting them proudly on the table. The thought of one of them throwing a thong into the cabinet was beyond all comprehension. All day long Lorna and Matt exchanged loving pats, while Jillian and her good Samaritan, Caleb, flirted shyly with each other.
Only Jade and Brady hadn’t been lovey-dovey. But that was Brady, he was always distant—
Except when Ally is around.
Ally, whose place card was moved so that she sat on one side of Brady. (Who had done that? Her? Him?)
Ally, who must have been the funniest woman in the world because Brady always laughed at everything she said.
Ally, who would walk into a room, and a moment later Brady would be there, too.
Ally who, as Jade found out only this morning from Jillian, wasn’t really married at all.
Brady is with her now.
And he was taking his sweet time, too. How long did it take to walk six blocks over, and another six blocks up?
Was there a time in which they’d snuck away to have sex while everyone was chatting and cooking and munching and prepping their dishes?
I trusted Ally…
And I trusted Brady.
Jesus, what a fool I’ve been.
Jade couldn’t stand it anymore. She lifted the thong out of the cabinet with the first thing handy—the turkey baster.
She was still holding it aloft when the front door opened and Brady came into the house. He didn’t even notice her there, in the kitchen. Instead, he went upstairs to put down his sleeping son.
A few minutes later he came back to investigate why Jade wasn’t already in bed.
When he saw what she was holding in her hand, his face went white.
When she flung it at him, it landed on his shoulder.
“It’s Ally’s, isn’t it?” Her voice was barely a whisper.
Josie Brown is the author of these novels: Totlandia: The Onesies, Book 1 (Fall) and Totlandia: The Onesies, Book 2 (Winter), [2012, Coliloquy], The Housewife Assassin’s Bloody Valentine [2012, MSW Press], The Housewife Assassin’s Handbook, [2011, Signal Press], The Baby Planner, [2011, Simon & Schuster], Secret Lives of Husbands and Wives, [2010, Simon & Schuster], Impossibly Tongue-Tied, [2006, HarperCollins], and True Hollywood Lies, [2005, HarperCollins; 2010 Diversion Books].
Her novel, Secret Lives of Husbands and Wives (Simon & Schuster), is being produced by Jerry Bruckheimer as a dramatic series for NBC-TV.
Josie is also the author of three non-fiction books: The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Finding Mr. Right [Alpha/Pearson]; Marriage Confidential: 102 Honest Answers to the Questions Every Husband Wants to Ask, and Every Wife Needs to Know [Signal Press]; and Last Night I Dreamt of Cosmopolitans: A Modern Girl’s Dream Dictionary [St. Martin's Press].
As a journalist, Josie’s celebrity interviews and relationships trends articles have been featured in the Los Angeles Times Syndicate International, Redbook and Complete Woman magazines, as well as AOL, Yahoo, AskMen.com, Divorce360.com, and SingleMindedWomen.com.
Follow Josie at www.josiebrown.com.