Burning The Map by Laura Caldwell

By Laura Caldwell

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As if a complete stranger wasn’t performing oral sex on her in the company of her two friends. “Give it a rest, will you? ” Kat lugs Guiseppe up by his shoulders. When he emerges from the sheets, his golden hair is tousled, his pouty lips decidedly glistening. “Sorry,” Kat says to me, but when she looks at Guiseppe, she starts giggling. I feel like a second-grade teacher, yet I can’t help barking, “Quiet. ” Kat and Guiseppe try to feign seriousness, but it’s hard to quell their delight. I pull the covers over my head and squeeze my eyes shut.

Lindsey groans and props herself up on her elbows. ” I immediately sit on the edge of her bed, ready for some of the good girl talk that’s been missing from my life. I’ve certainly had no interesting stories of my own. ” I cover my mouth, trying not to laugh. “Don’t even,” she says, before she continues. ” “Monte Mario,” I tell her. It’s a nice neighborhood just outside the city limits. ” “Well, it was obvious they were looking for an evening of Love American Style,” Lindsey says, again glaring at Kat, “which I guess I should have expected the way those two were making out at the table—but I really did think we were going to the Vatican.

Her nickname is something of a misnomer, since she’s the most straight-laced of all of us. The name should have been bestowed on Kat instead. I lean forward in my seat. “My friends find you attractive,” I say to the driver in rudimentary Italian. In fact, I think I may have referred to him in terms usually saved for food, but he seems to get the point. The thirtyish, swarthy, perspiring man slows the cab considerably and gives Kat and Lindsey a meaningful look in the rearview mirror. “Grazie,” Kat calls to the driver, trying out one of the Italian words I taught her on the plane.

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