I was alone in my office when the text came.
Friday. 8pm. Be there…naked.
I blinked. Wow. That was…strange.
I have a healthy appreciation for a suggestive text. But this one? Well, the problem wasn’t what it said, but who said it. You see, its sender was:
A) Over 12-hours away from me
B) Not my husband
…and, oh, let’s not forget… C) My brother’s wife.
Now, I’ve been known to have a glass of wine or six at family gatherings, but I’m pretty sure I’d remember if our relationship had ventured into the brave new world requiring “Be there…naked” texts. Obviously, this text wasn’t meant for me.
We’ve all done it—hurriedly sent a message to someone only to later realize we’d asked our babysitter to buy a gallon of milk or our twelve-years-sober aunt to bring on the vodka martinis. More often, after sending a text with sensitive content, I’m grabbing my phone because I’m suddenly panicked I sent it to the wrong person. Usually, my worry is unnecessary, but how uncomfortable would it be if a text message meant for my husband went to my father-in-law? Pardon me while I shudder at the thought.
When I wrote TEXT APPEAL, I decided to have a little fun with the idea of text messages going to the wrong person and a relationship evolving from that correspondence. Kind of like a texting version of Cyrano de Bergerac if the letter-sender were a sexy poker player with a bad rep. Of course, Riley’s new cell is entirely misprogrammed so every texts seems like it’s coming from her dud-in-the-sack boyfriend, Chaz, who does nothing for her Inner Naughty Girl (ING). She has no reason to suspect they might be coming from bad boy Charlie who she’d never dreamed of giving a chance.
The screen read: Message from Charles Spencer.
She bit her lip. Chaz. Their date hadn’t ended so well last night, and she wasn’t sure if he really would text like he promised. She hit OK.
I can’t stop thinking about yesterday.
Riley put her fingers to her lips but couldn’t stop them from spreading into a grin. She took a breath. You’ve been on my mind, too, she typed. Did it sound too needy? Too desperate? She wanted to improve her sex life with Chaz more than a dieter wanted ice cream, but she wasn’t sure how to go about it. She held her breath and hit Send.
She stared at the phone, willing it to vibrate, willing him to respond.
“Don’t be stupid, Riley. You don’t need to text back and forth like teenagers all day. He’s busy. Get back to work.” She stole a last glance at her phone and turned back to her computer.
It buzzed again, vibrating against the desk. She chewed on her bottom lip. She should not be this excited about a text message.
But she was. She snatched her phone and read the message.
Did you try it on?
Her heart kicked up a beat. Surely he didn’t mean…Try what on? she typed. Send.
Black. Leather. Sexy as fuck? Ring any bells?
She shifted in her chair. Was this a side of Chaz she hadn’t seen? Was he secretly someone her ING would come out and purr for? That would be a good thing, right? Why did that seem so weird to her?
Her stomach clenched. All she could do was find out. I tried it on.
Four words. Safe. Noncommittal. He wouldn’t run screaming in the other direction. And if he didn’t like the idea of her wearing something so provocative…Sexy as fuck. She shifted again. He liked it. She hit Send and her lame-o message fled from her phone.
She waited, listening to the wall clock tick, tick, tick…Her phone buzzed.
I wish I’d been there. Hope you took pictures.
She frowned. Okay, she didn’t expect that from Chaz.
Pretend it’s Charlie, her ING said. What’s weird from Chaz is hot from Charlie.
That was a terrible idea, of course, to think about Charlie while Chaz was texting her. But she reread the message and imagined Charlie typing it, that cocky grin on his face, his dimple making an occasional appearance—
Her thighs flexed instinctively.
The texts continue, setting a series of events into motion that change all of their lives—for better or worse. It was great fun to write. I love screwing with characters.
How do you feel about text messages as a home for…sensitive conversation? Too dangerous or too irresistible? I’d love to hear if any of you have any fun stories about sending a text to the wrong person or getting one that wasn’t intended for you. I’ll give away a digital copy of my new sexy novelette, JUST ONE NIGHT, to a random commenter.
Oh, and that text from my sister-in-law? She sent another a few minutes later:
Sorry! That text was supposed to go to my friend Lisa.
Hey, I just get the texts, I can’t explain them.
Author of both contemporary and paranormal romance, Lexi Ryan writes smart, spunky stories that sizzle. She enjoys reading, sunshine, a good glass of wine, and trips to the beach. If she’s not hitting the pavement in an attempt to be a runner, you can probably find her perusing the nearest selection of Blue Bell ice cream.
Lexi lives in Indiana with her husband and two young children. You can find her at her website: http://www.lexiryan.com/