I finally caved in to curiosity and SMS'd Brooke back. Told him I'd be home yesterday, and if he REALLY wanted to talk, all he needed to do was to show up. What I DIDN'T say in my text message was that I wouldn't be alone. I'd be there with Mandy. We'd have a few things to talk about, for sure.

It was around 20:00 when we heard the door bell ring. Figuring I'd be smart or something, I asked Mandy to go answer the door and let him in. My bet was that upon seeing Mandy in my apartment, he'd know that I knew about their relationship, and that would make him sweat some more. Mandy thought it was a bit juvenile of me, but accepted to play along to humor me. So I stayed in the living room, facing outside, staring at the night outside through the window bay doors.

I heard Mandy answer the door and talk to someone. There was a pause, then I heard some footsteps coming into the living room. I turned, trying to do my best impression of a dramatic James Bond villain, ready to do some kind of "Ah-HA!" moment and unsettle Brooke.

Except that it wasn't Brooke standing next to Mandy. It was some tall, HOT chick I'd never seen before. She was wearing some tight pants, a white shirt, a sleeveless jacket on top, and a bowler hat. She was chewing on a toothpick in a way that was vaguely familiar. Did I mention how HOT she was? Real hot! Hot as "Stripper Mandy" hot.

She looked at me with some annoyance, then finally spoke.

"Hey Bro," she said. "S'about time you returned my texts. It's been WEEKS!"

I paused and blinked a few times. Then it hit me.

"Brooke?"

[To be continued]