Suddenly Sexy

By: Kendra Little

"Why not? If I recall, Mum used to like him."

"I don't care what Mum thinks! This has got nothing to do with my criteria." She plucked imaginary fluff off her tailored pants. The criteria, along with the Plan and her last tube of Clearasil, had long been relegated to the bin.

Linda smacked her hand lightly. "Stop fussing and tell me what the problem is. What's wrong with Sam Hennessy?"

"Okay." She took a deep breath. She'd never told anyone this before. She'd bottled it up inside since she was fifteen and had forgotten how much it had hurt until Sam turned up looking more gorgeous than ever. Well, here goes...


"He called me a nerd."

Linda gasped and placed a hand to her breast in mock horror. "He called my little sister a nerd? How dare he! I mean, it's not like you were or anything."

"Shut up, Linda. He hurt my feelings. And I don't know if I can forgive him."

"Pete used to call you a nerd back then too, but you forgave him."

"Pete's different. He's always been like a brother, and I expect that sort of behavior from a brother. Not from a—"

"Hunky guy you secretly wished had noticed you when you were fifteen?"

Linda was like the little devil that sat on Maddie's shoulder, reminding her of all the embarrassing things she'd ever done. Except she couldn't make Linda shut up by thinking about food.

"He might be cute but I don't have a crush on him anymore. You know the sort of guys I date. He doesn't fit."

Linda sighed. "I suppose. He's not a doctor, scientist or computer programmer."

"And he drives a Porsche."

"Oh NO!" Linda poured gravy over the roast without splashing the bench. Maddie watched, impressed. "So what's wrong with a Porsche?"

"Too flashy. People who drive flashy cars want to be the center of attention. And they like to speed. Driving fast is dangerous."

Linda paused mid-pour. "Are we really sisters? Are you sure you weren't conceived in a test tube?"

Maddie sniffed. "I can't help it if I don't like men with flashy cars. Besides, they usually prefer flashy women and have the attention span of an ant so aren't interested in me anyway."

"I really wonder what you base these theories on sometimes, Mad."

"Observation. I'm a scientist, that's what I do. I test, I observe the results. Same goes for life."

Linda snorted. "Deep. So what's your scientific observation on how someone like Sam Hennessy ended up earning more in a week than you do in a year?"

Maddie sighed. Sam was living proof that Karma is a load of crap. Like every good nerd, she'd been to university for years to get her biochemistry doctorate. She'd graduated one of the top students in the state, landed a great job in the development lab at BioDerma and earned a decent living. Then someone like Sam Hennessy who never bothered turning up to class in high school, barely passed his exams and drifted from city to city, landed fabulous job after fabulous job.

"It sucks," she muttered.

Ronan gurgled his agreement but ruined the sentiment with a smile.

"I work hard, at the gym and the lab. He doesn't even try and look at him. Rich, successful and a body like a God. I bet he doesn’t even work out."

"We don't know that. He must do something to keep those buns of steel in superhero shape. And he did work his way up the corporate ladder to become CEO of that paint company in Sydney. It wasn’t just handed to him on a platter."

"That's not the point. The point is I worked hard my entire life. Not just the last year or two."

"Should've had fun while you were young," Linda said smugly.

"Like you? You call three and a half children fun?"

Linda frowned at Ronan. Ronan blew a raspberry. "How could your Auntie Mad think you're not fun?"

Five minutes later, Maddie had everyone sitting down at the dining table—a miraculous feat considering David and Emily couldn't sit still for more than five seconds. They'd both decided Sam was the most exciting thing since Saturday morning cartoons and wanted to sit on his knee. He obliged, one per knee, and played "This Little Piggy" until their squeals drove everyone crazy.

Linda fed Ronan as Maddie brought the plates out. In the kitchen, last two plates in hand, she sucked in a lungful of air and tried to psych herself up. She could do this. He was just another guy. And she had a great job—a fantastic job—at BioDerma, and a great home in Melbourne. She was definitely not a gawky, tongue-tied teenager anymore.

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