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That afternoon, she went ice skating, doing one spin after another in the center of the rink until they made everyone get off because the session was over. She called her mother. "I'm coming home," she said. It began snowing. She got on a train at Penn Station. There were no seats. She stood in the

The train went through Rye and Greenwich. The snow turned into a blizzard. They passed Greens Farms and Westport and then the dirty little industrial towns. The train stopped, delayed because of the snow. Strangers began talking. It was Christmas.

Carrie lit a cigarette. She kept thinking about the man and Jason Mould and Stelli Stein (whoever she was) lying around a pool underneath a blue St. Barts sky. Stelli Stein would be wearing a white bikini and a black hat. They'd be sipping drinks through straws. People would come for lunch. And everyone would be long and tan and beautiful.

Carrie watched the snow blow into the car through a crack in the door. She wondered if she would ever get anything right.

It was midnight. Skipper was sitting in his apartment, talking on the phone to California, standing in front of the window. A cab pulled up to the building across the street. He could see a man and a woman in the back seat, making out. Then the woman got out, and she was wearing a big fur coat with like twelve cashmere sweaters wrapped around her head, and the cab drove off.

It was Samantha Jones.

Two minutes later, his doorbell rang.

"Sam," Skipper said. "I've been expecting you."

"Oh, please, Skipper. Stop with the juvenilities. I was wondering if I could borrow some shampoo," she said.

"Shampoo? How about a drink?" Skipper asked.

"A small one," Sam said. "And don't get any funny ideas. Like putting Ecstasy in it or anything."

"Ecstasy? I don't even do drugs. I've never even done coke, I swear. Wow. I can't believe you're in my apartment."

"I can't either," Sam said. She began walking around the living room. Touching things. "You know, I'm not quite as organized as everyone thinks."

"Why don't you take off your coat?" Skipper said. "Sit

"I really want to wash my hair," Sam said. "You can wash it here," Skipper said. "After." "I don't think so."

"Who was that man you were kissing in the cab?" Skipper asked. "Just another man I either don't want or can't have," Samantha said. "Like you."

"But you can have me," Skipper said. "I'm available." "Exactly," Sam said.

Date: 2014-12-29; view: 1148

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