Read an excerpt from This Side Up!

From Chapter One…

I slammed the phone down with somewhat unnecessary force; slumping in my chair like a woman who had spent the better part of the day trying to convince herself that she really didn’t need one man while fretting over not being able to get an altogether different man on the phone. Ah, the irony.

As I pondered this, there was a knock at my door. It was most likely the pizza, but I checked the peephole anyway to make sure. I didn’t see anyone there, so I opened the door cautiously. I’d been fooled by this trick before. I peered outside to see if anyone was waiting to club me over the head, but no one was there. That was odd; I could have sworn someone had been at the door. Maybe I was hearing things. I shut the door and went into my kitchen to see if I had anything to drink in the refrigerator. I opened it up and looked inside. One can of Coke and a couple of bottles of beer. I grabbed the Coke and opened it.

As I took a swig, there was another knock at the door. I was pretty sure it was actually a knock this time. I set the can down on the counter and went over to the door. This time, I reached into my purse which was hanging on its hook near the door and grabbed my gun. I held it at the ready as I looked through the peephole again. This time, I saw the pizza delivery guy standing there holding my pizza, grinning like an idiot. What the hell did he have to be so happy about? He was a pizza delivery guy for Christ’s sake.

I opened the door, still holding my gun. The boy’s eyes grew wide as he saw it in my hand.

“Don’t worry,” I said, “it’s not for you.” I smiled reassuringly and handed him a $20 bill to cover the cost of my order. “Keep the change, dear.”

He handed me the pizza and the Coke and then backed away from me without saying a word. I’d tipped him about four bucks, so in addition to not getting shot, I’d say he did pretty well on this order.

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