Page 8 of American Psycho

"Oh baby." She pouts into the mirror, looking at me in its reflection. "I know you're not an extraterrestrial."

"Relief," I mutter to myself.

"No, but Stash was there at Odeon that night," Price continues, and then, looking over at me, "At Odeon. Are you listening, Bateman?"

"No he wasn' t," Evelyn says.

"Oh yes he was, but his name wasn't Stash last time. It was Horseshoe or Magnet or Lego or something equally adult," Price sneers. "I forget."

"Timothy, what are you going on about?" Evelyn asks tiredly. "I'm not even listening to you." She wets a cotton ball, wipes it across her forehead.

"No, we were at Odeon." Price sits up with some effort. "And don't ask me why, but I distinctly remember him ordering the tuna cappuccino."

"Carpaccio," Evelyn corrects.

"No, Evelyn dear, love of my life. I distinctly remember him ordering the tuna cappuccino," Price says, staring up at the ceiling.

"He said carpaccio," she counters, running the cotton ball over her eyelids.

"Cappuccino," Price insists. "Untilyou corrected him."

"You didn't even recognize him earlier tonight," she says.

"Oh but I do remember him," Price says, turning to me. "Evelyn described him as 'the good-natured body builder.' That's how she introduced him. I swear."

"Oh shut up," she says, annoyed, but she looks over at Timothy in the mirror and smiles flirtatiously.

"I mean I doubt Stash makes the society pages of W, which I thought was your criterion for choosing friends," Price says, staring back, grinning at her in his wolfish, lewd way. I concentrate on the Absolut and cranberry I'm holding and it looks like a glassful of thin, watery blood with ice and a lemon wedge in it.

"What's going on with Courtney and Luis?" I ask, hoping to break their gaze.

"Oh god," Evelyn moans, turning back to the mirror. "The really dreadful thing about Courtney is not that she doesn't like Luis anymore. It's that - "

"They canceled her charge at Bergdorf's?" Price asks. I laugh. We slap each other high-five.

"No," Evelyn continues, also amused. "It's that she's really in love with her real estate broker. Some little twerp over at The Feathered Nest."

"Courtney might have her problems," Tim says, inspecting his recent manicure, "but my god, what is a... Vanden?"

"Oh don't bring this up," Evelyn whines and starts brushing her hair.

"Vanden is a cross between... The Limited and... used Benetton," Price says, holding up his hands, his eyes closed.

"No." I smile, trying to integrate myself into the conversation. "Used Fiorucci."

"Yeah," Tim says. "I guess." His eyes, now open, zone in on Evelyn.

"Timothy, lay off," Evelyn says. "She's a Camden girl. What do you expect?"

"Oh god," Timothy moans. "I am so sick of hearing Camden -girl problems. Oh my boyfriend, I love him but he loves someone else and oh how I longed for him and he ignored me and blahblah blahblahblah - god, how boring. College kids. It matters, you know? It's sad, right Bateman?"

"Yeah. Matters. Sad."

"See, Bateman agrees with me," Price says smugly.

"Oh he does not." With a Kleenex Evelyn wipes off whatever she rubbed on. "Patrick is not a cynic, Timothy. He's the boy next door, aren't you honey?"

"No I'm not," I whisper to myself. "I'm a f**king evil psychopath."

"Oh so what," Evelyn sighs. "She's not the brightest girl in the world."

"Hah! Understatement of the century!" Price cries out. "But Stash isn't the brightest guy either. Perfect couple. Did they meet on Love Connection or something?"

"Leave them alone," Evelyn says. "Stash is talented and I'm sure we're under estimating Vanden."

"This is a girl..." Price turns to me. "Listen, Bateman, this is a girl - Evelyn told me this - this is a girl who rented High Noon because she thought it was a movie about" - he gulps - "marijuana farmers."

"It just hit me," I say. "But have we deciphered what Stash - I assume he has a last name but don't tell me, I don't want to know, Evelyn - does for a living?"

"First of all he's perfectly decent and nice," Evelyn says in his defense.

"The man asked for chocolate chip sorbet for Christ sakes!" Timothy wails, disbelieving. "What are you talking about?"