Still, I force myself to swallow past the bitterness. “Congratulations.”
“I’m sorry,” he offers.
“It’s fine,” I assure him.
There’s an awkward silence. Finally, he asks, “How are your parents?”
Pinching the bridge of my nose with my finger and thumb, I breathe out a long sigh. “Let’s not do this, Caleb. Let’s not pretend we’re going to be friends and you care about my family. That’s all done. I’m happy that you’re happy. Let’s just leave it at that.”
“Bailey,” he murmurs sympathetically.
“Oh, and stop calling me to check on the credit card payments.”
“Yeah, okay… fine,” he replies, sounding almost eager to give me something. Sort of like a parting consolation prize.
“Have a great life, Caleb.” After I disconnect my phone, I set it down beside my purse. I finish off my Bud Light and push the empty toward the edge of the bar top, taking the artisan beer in hand.
Jeff appears before me, dumping the empty and placing his forearms on the edge of the bar. “Let me guess… that was Caleb on the phone.”
I blink in surprise.
He shrugs. “Looks like you smelled shit in your beer or something.”
Jeff knows about Caleb. As a couple, we hung out here together. After we split, Jeff was a friend, as well as a bartending ear. Of course, he knows about my painful humiliation and heartbreak over my husband leaving and about me having no clue he liked men.
Although I should have known.
“How did I miss he was bi?” I ask. It’s not the first time we’ve pondered this. “I mean… it was all right there. We’d role play or tell each other our fantasies, and he’d offer to invite another man into the bedroom with us. I thought it was sweet and generous that he’d do that for me, but I always declined. Now I know he wasn’t offering for me. Instead, he was offering for himself.”
Jeff stares, wearing an inscrutable expression.
I grimace. “Too much information?”
He shakes his head. “Not at all. In fact, I was just thinking… have you even dated since you two broke up?”
I shrug, not sure if a horrible experience with a Tinder date counts. The man who met me for dinner was most certainly not the same as the photo on the profile.
Regardless, dating is hard and time-consuming. I don’t have room in my life for the stress of it.
“You need to get laid,” he says with a firm nod of his head.
Far from being offended, I incline my head in curiosity. “That simple, huh?”
“Your heart is still raw,” he observes.
“My heart is completely fine,” I counter adamantly. “I am so over Caleb.”
“Of that, I’m sure,” Jeff agrees sympathetically. “But you’ve had it hard, Bailey. Your marriage failing, working three jobs, caring for ailing parents, paying for debt that isn’t yours… When do you ever do anything for yourself?”
He has a point. I don’t do anything for myself. While Caleb and I were by no means well off, our dual-income household made us comfortable. I used to get my hair done and nails manicured often. I would buy pretty clothes, and we’d eat out at nice restaurants when the mood hit.
I’m intrigued Jeff would boil down something nice for myself to simply sex. But I have to admit… a great orgasm is a definite tension buster, and nothing says relaxation like the feeling after.
This I know, as my vibrator has gotten plenty of use since Caleb left, but it’s not a sure-fire replacement for a great fucking. And despite the fact Caleb liked men as much as women, the man sure knew how to use his dick.
“I don’t have it in me to date, though,” I say regrettably.
“Who said anything about dating?” Jeff replies with a laugh. “My wife and I met at a sex club. Maybe you should try that.”
And then… he moves off to serve another customer while I stare after him with my mouth agape.
A sex club?
That’s how he met Amy? I would have never guessed. She’s a freaking fifth-grade schoolteacher.
My mouth is still hanging open when he comes back, his grin sly and mischievous. “Too much information?” he teases back.
I shake my head slowly before leaning in to whisper. “You and Amy met at a sex club?”
“Yeah.” He chuckles. “We still go sometimes. Keeps things spicy.”
“I didn’t even know sex clubs were a thing,” I mutter, taking a long pull on my beer. “You just go inside, and what… find someone to hook up with there?”
“Well, there are different kinds around Vegas. Some are pretty seedy, while others are high end. You can Google it.”
I think about it for about three seconds before I shake my head resolutely. “Yeah… I don’t think I could do that. Just walk into a place and hook up with someone I don’t know.”
“A lot safer than meeting people online,” he counters, and well… that could be a good point.