Read Chances Aren't Online

Authors: Luke Young

Tags: #Humorous, #Time Travel, #Literature & Fiction, #Romantic Comedy, #Satire, #American, #General Humor, #Humor & Satire, #Romance

Chances Aren't

BOOK: Chances Aren't
10.99Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub


Copyright © Luke Young, 2013

All rights reserved.

This book is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are the product of the author’s imagination or are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead is entirely coincidental.

Copyright 2013 by Luke Young. All rights reserved under International and Pan-American Copyright Conventions. By payment of the required fees, you have been granted the non-exclusive, non-transferable right to access and read the text of this e-book on-screen. No part of this text may be reproduced, downloaded, transmitted, reverse engineered, decompiled or stored in or introduced into any information storage and retrieval system, in any form whether electronic or mechanical, now known or hereinafter invented, without the express written permission of Luke Young.

Cover design by Derek Murphy @Creativindie

Edited by Kerry Genova,






The Friends With... Benefits Series:

(Excerpt Included)




To contact Luke or to be placed on a mailing list to receive updates about new releases, send an email to
[email protected]

To find out more about the author and his work, see


I'd like to thank the following individuals for their help and support:

Amy Shonk, a reader of an early draft, who not only provided wonderful suggestions to help improve this book, but slogged through the finished product and proofread the heck out of it.

Ricki Wieselthier a member of my marketing team, well, the only member of my marketing team, for her hard work. She can be found at The Book Pimp

Kerry Genova, my amazingly helpful editor. She can be found at

Mindy Morgan and Cindi Mitchell, readers of an early draft who helped improve this book with their insightful suggestions.

And also Amber, Jamie, Mindy, Beth, Christina, Sheree, Sherry, Deborah, Rose, Teresa, Cheryl, Kerry, Heidi, Sara, Diane, Kaisha, Veka, Jean, Kathy, Heather, Tara, Alison, Maya, Emma, Laurie, Victoria, Laurie, Nancy, Trinity, Daphne, Becky, Tanya, Kristin and the rest of the members of my new Street Team— a wonderful group of readers who've been out there promoting my work. I appreciate all the support. (If I missed mentioning anyone who posted on the page, sorry about that…)

Table of Contents

Chances Aren't

Friends With
Partial Benefits Excerpt

Chapter 1

Opening the door to the house, the scent washes over me and I let out a deep sigh. Every week, for more than twenty five years, I've enjoyed this homemade family recipe spaghetti sauce and tonight is the night. I wasn't expecting it, but it will be, by far, the highlight of my day, if not my week. It's this secret recipe that's been in my wife Emily's family for generations. They don't have it written down anywhere, they all just know it by heart. The mother, the three sisters, and hell, even the brother can make it, although his just isn't the same as the girls’. I guess they don't want anyone to steal it, so short of torturing one of the O'Brien girls to get it, I guess the rest of the world is out of luck. Don't panic thinking that the Irish are now somehow masters of great pasta sauce— they're only half Irish, the recipe is clearly from the Italian side of the family.

"Hi," I say as I place my briefcase down.

Standing at the sink dumping the steaming pot of pasta into a colander, she says, "I made meat sauce."

I was wrong; this will be the highlight of the month. "No way, and is that ziti?"


Fuck yeah… I'm going to need to sit down. When one gets this excited over a meal, either it's an indication that the person lives one hell of a pathetic life or the food is really just that good. Trust me it's that good, but sadly, in this case, it's a little bit of both.

I close my eyes and take another whiff. I'm salivating like crazy and starving, after having nothing more than a yogurt with granola all day, I'm ready for some real food. And this is my absolute favorite, her famous meat sauce over ziti. Because ziti is the gold standard of pasta, just the right size noodle with those little tunnels, which not only trap pockets of delicious sauce, but also allow the prongs of your fork inside for clean and secure lifting to your waiting mouth. They cook evenly, sans ridges like a rigatoni, which invariably ends up being partially over and undercooked and unlike spaghetti noodles, which are so messy, even an expertly spun forkful has the tendency to flop around launching sauce shrapnel everywhere. I say, give me ziti any day. In fact, they should really stop making all other forms of noodles, well, except for lasagna. Ah, lasagna— there's a good chance I might be clutching my chest right now if she was pulling one of those out of the oven.

Shaking my head, I return from my pasta fantasy, frowning as I notice she's not running the cold water while draining. I don't say a word about it, even though we've discussed many times what running boiling water down the drain can do to your pipes. Why risk a fight when I'm about to get a plate full of heaven? I'll save it for another noodle and another day.

"When's the last time we had meat sauce?" I ask.

Turning to me, she simply shrugs.

I sit down with my heaping plate before me and dig in. Closing my eyes, I savor the taste moaning in pleasure. I cover my half full mouth with my napkin and mumble, "Oh man, this is good."

She sits next to me and I notice her plate contains only a few dozen noodles barely covered with sauce, so I ask, "What's the matter? You feel okay?"

"Just not very hungry."

"Well, it's amazing… as usual."

After carefully sliding my three pronged fork into three noodles, I scoop under a pool of sauce full of meat, admire the sight for a moment, and then slide it into my mouth. She's staring at me with a slightly disgusted look. I quickly chew, but not nearly enough, then swallow fighting to suppress my 'What-About-Bob' reaction to this mouthful. I catch her rolling her eyes a bit and give her a sorrowful shrug. "Sorry, I'll slow down."

"No, enjoy it." She shoots me a slight smile and moves her noodles around her plate with her fork before skewering one and bringing it to her mouth.

Taking a slice of Italian bread, I drown it in sauce and take a bite, letting my lids close for a moment before forcing them open. "Sorry, I know you hate it when I have sex with your sauce."

She shakes her head, curling her lip and either fighting back a laugh or the urge to stab me with her butter knife, but I'm not sure which. A memory pops into my brain and I smile. "Hey, you remember when we were dating that summer and your father would always be sitting in that chair in the living room while everyone was in the dining room? From that angle he looked like he was naked in that chair wearing only those little shorts."

"Yeah…" She replies, disinterested, with not even a chuckle.

I'm convinced now she wants to stab me. "You're not still mad about that show are you?"

"No, I'm—"

"Cause I must have set the DVR wrong or something, but I was able to download the entire video to my phone while I was at work. I figured you could watch it while we drive up to the outlets this weekend. You know your birthday is coming up and we could have lunch at that place you like."

This seems to catch her off guard as she makes a face, so I ask, "You still want to go, right?"

"Um, I, uh… We'll see."

I shovel in only two noodles this time, and chew slowly while giving her a controlled smile as I swallow. "I watched some of that show at lunch today and I can't believe we were at the bar the night that girl went missing. That's just crazy isn't it?"

"Yes, look Ben I think—"

"So you never met Jordan?"

"No," she fires back quickly.

"He went to Towson too. Do you really think he killed her? I mean, they don't have any real evid—"

"Ben, I need to…" Emily begins before closing her eyes and rubbing her hands over her face.

"What is it?" I ask then take another bite.

"I think we should…" She takes a deep breath. "I'm... I'm leaving you."

"What?" I suppress a chuckle. "What are you talking about?"

Curling her lip, she looks away out the patio door toward the pool before turning back to me with a tear running down her face. "I can't do this anymore. I think we should split up."

"You're serious?" I wipe the sauce off my face and push my half full plate away. "I know things between us haven't been great, but—"

"Not great?" She scoffs. "Not great. That's how you would describe this?" She sniffles and grabs a napkin off the table and quickly wipes her nose. "You can honestly say you're happy?" Looking at me pointedly, she awaits my response.

"Oh God no. Happy? We're married." I shoot her a skeptical look. "Are we supposed to actually be happy?"

"Yeah, we're supposed to be happy."

"Name one couple you know who are happy?"

Rolling her eyes, she says, "That's not the point."

"Come on you're kidding, right? What is it, the anniversary of the first time we held hands or something and everyone we know is going to jump out and yell sur—"

"Ben, no, this is not a joke."

Letting that statement sink in, I poke at the ziti with my fork. "Okay, so…" Suddenly my eyes shoot wide open. "Wait, you're not seeing someone else are you?"


I scoff before giving her an evil smile. "That's right, you couldn't be. You don't actually need any sex."

She appears to be reaching for the knife. "I do too."

"Well I'm right here baby. I've been right here for the last ten years, waiting. If you wanted me, you could have let me know."

"Oh, I have to let you know. That was my job?" She folds her arms and refuses to look me in the eye.

"Well, yeah it became your job after I tried and tried for more than a year to put us back on track after all the fertility clinic tests and that whole nightmare you put me through."

"I put you through." Her jaw drops open. "Seriously, I put you through? You wanted a baby just as much as I did."

"Yeah maybe at first, but you, you were obsessed… like without a baby we were nothing. You know, I have friends at work with kids and they’re miserable. Yeah, miserable… Broke and constantly doing homework, driving them everywhere, never getting to go out… do you know what time you have to get up in the morning to get your kids off to high school, huh?"

She just stares back with a bored expression, but I plow ahead anyway.

"5:30. Yeah, 5:30… Even Matt Lauer gets to sleep later than that."

Letting out a shallow breath, she wipes away another tear. "I know you wanted a baby."

"I did, but I wasn’t willing to throw us away because of it. You’re the one who gave up on me when
all… found… out
how pathetic my sperm are— your doctor, your family, the fertility doctor, all the nurses… hell, even the receptionists at the clinic looked at me funny whenever I walked past her to that room."

BOOK: Chances Aren't
10.99Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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