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Authors: Zoey Dean

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Heart of Glass

BOOK: Heart of Glass
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Copyright © 2007 by Alloy Entertainment

All rights reserved. Except as permitted under the U.S. Copyright Act of 1976, no part of this publication may be reproduced, distributed, or transmitted in any form or by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior written permission of the publisher.

Little, Brown and Company

Hachette Book Group USA

237 Park Avenue, New York, NY 10017

Visit our Web site at
HachetteBookGroupUSA.com

First eBook Edition: April 2007

The characters and events in this book are fictitious. Any similarity to real persons, living or dead, is coincidental and not intended by the author.

ISBN: 978-0-316-04161-4

Contents

Get the Flipping Cuffs, Okay?

The First Felon I Ever Dated

Body by Bohdi

That Old Ojai Magic

The Anti-Hollywood Crowd

Kiss and Tell

Pre-Post-Hot

Barbie-Doll Curves

Model Behavior

A White, Dry Envelope

Could I Have Your Autograph?

Toga, Toga

Reserved for Bono

Wax On, Wax Off

Midnight Special

Room 928

Does He Do This to You?

The Natural

The Price Is Right

We Call It the Fire Drill

The Opposite of the Last Sentence

A Little Short on Role Models

The Smell of Rive Gauche

The Headline Was a Screamer

Guilt Jerk

Desperate for Champagne

Umm . . . What Goes Under This?

Shoplifters’ Olympics

Double Dating

A-List novels by Zoey Dean:

THE A-LIST

GIRLS ON FILM

BLONDE AMBITION

TALL COOL ONE

BACK IN BLACK

SOME LIKE IT HOT

AMERICAN BEAUTY

HEART OF GLASS

When people say, “She’s got everything,” I’ve got one answer: I haven’t had tomorrow.

—Elizabeth Taylor

Get the Flipping Cuffs, Okay?

“‘C
alculate This!
’” Anna Percy read the title page of the script she was holding. “‘A zany comedy about a socially inept loner who invents a gorgeous female robotic math wizard.’” “Write, ‘Defines a new low in the art of screenwriting, suitable only for fireplace kindling,’ and move on,” her friend Sam Sharpe advised.

Anna and Sam were sprawled on a pale blue couch. To their left, a wall of floor-to-ceiling windows offered a stunning view of white sand beach and softly rolling waves, while the living room itself had been decorated in sea foam and cerulean, as if to bring the ocean itself into the living spaces. Between them on the floor was a huge pile of movie scripts. It was their job to read them all.

“That doesn’t really seem fair,” Anna mused, her back to the windows. “I mean, we’re getting paid to write our evaluation. By your father.” Their original plan for the summer had been to work as interns on Sam’s father’s film,
Ben-Hur,
a remake of the classic. But when they’d realized that would mean commuting an hour each way to Palmdale to arrive in time for the shooting (which started promptly every morning at 6 A.M.), they’d politely decided to be script readers for Jackson’s production company, Action Jackson Productions.

“Look, we just graduated from high school and we’re young and ambitious, so whatever. Reading scripts is just something to do for the summer. And you never know: maybe I’ll find the right one that will launch my professional directing career. Who needs film school?” Sam scoffed. She swung her feet up onto the couch and stretched out.

Anna knew that Sam wanted to be a director. Not a popcorn,
Snakes on a Plane
–type director, either. A serious director. In fact, Sam had directed a number of student films that were really good. Not only that, her father was America’s Most Beloved Action Hero, Jackson Sharpe, which meant she had both industry access and financial backing should she ever find her Perfect Script. Sam Sharpe was well connected.

Before Anna moved from New York to Beverly Hills this past January to live with her father and finish school at Beverly Hills High School, the film industry was the furthest thing from her mind. She had zero interest in celebrities and red carpet premieres, but living in California and being Sam’s friend meant that the industry—everyone in Los Angeles called the film and TV business “the industry”—was the expensive and designer water in which she swam.

But no matter. In the fall, she’d be going to Yale, with the intent of studying serious literature. For the next two months, until she headed to New Haven, she could do pretty much whatever she wanted to do. Unfortunately, she hadn’t yet figured out exactly what that was.

Sam reached for her iBook and read aloud as she typed in her evaluation of the script she’d just finished.

“‘
Burnt Toast
by Norman Shnorman. Logline: A former bikini model moves to Wyoming, becomes a cook, and falls for the sheriff ’s quirky, intellectual son. Recommendation: Use script to line bottom of birdcage, then ban Norman Shnorman from film industry for life.’”

“That’s kind of harsh, Sam. You didn’t even read the whole thing.”

“Read ten pages and skimmed the next ninety-seven, which, trust me, is more than Norman deserves.” Sam stretched and rubbed the back of her neck. “You don’t seem to understand how this town works, Anna. Every geek boy who goes to film school writes a screenplay the day after he graduates. And what do they write about? Themselves and their geek-boy fantasies.”

“Well, if other geek boys grow up to run studios and direct movies, then the scripts might be right up their alley,” Anna pointed out, flipping over the title page to
Calculate This!
and skimming the first page. “It says here the brooding loner has ‘dashing good looks.’”

“That’s called geek-boy wishful thinking.” Sam pushed her laptop aside. “So sad, but probably true. And all the more reason that I’m going to be a ground-breaking director. Fuck the geek-boy Hollywood network.” She seemed to shift gears as she rose and tugged Anna up from the plush sofa. “We’ve been at this for hours. Let’s ask the cook to fire up some fettuccini Alfredo with shaved truffles—or chili burgers, depending on whether you’re in the mood—then walk up the beach, watch the fireworks, and celebrate truth, justice, and the American way. But let’s change into something ridiculously hot now so that we don’t have to do it before we go meet Eduardo and Caine at House of Blues. Have you seen my flip-flops?”

It still felt strange to Anna when someone said Caine Manning’s name as if there were an Anna-and-Caine—as in, a couple. Probably because she’d spent her entire time in Los Angeles as an on-again, off-again part of Anna-and-Ben, as in, Anna and Ben Birnbaum. A couple. Ben Birnbaum. Her first love. Her only love. Her—

No. She wasn’t going to get caught in that trap. That was then, this was now.

She caught sight of her reflection in the antique, gold-plated mirror that hung over a thick mahogany bookcase filled with movie scripts in the corner of the room and eyed herself quizzically. Straight blond hair, no makeup, broken-in faded Levi’s and her favorite battered green Calvin Klein T-shirt. She liked what she saw, though she knew she was more New York City chic than Los Angeles lollipop.

“Where the hell did I put those flip-flops?” Sam dropped to her knees to look under the couch.

“Probably wherever you last put them.”

Anna smiled. On paper, she and Sam Sharpe were the oddest of friends. Sam was spoiled, popular, and dramatic—her grandparents had been strictly working-class Lakewood until Jackson Sharpe found his affinity for the movie camera twenty years earlier, and the money came rolling in. Anna’s family, on the other hand, had been privileged since the Gilded Age. Sam read scripts. Anna read books. Sam was temperamental. Anna had been raised to be even-tempered. They didn’t have a great deal in common. Yet they’d found common ground. What Anna liked best about Sam—other than the fact that she was really smart—was that she had a huge heart and was fiercely loyal to her friends. Even those friends whom Anna would prefer to have relocate—preferably far, far away.

Besides, she reminded herself, she’d come to Los Angeles to shake up her life. Having a great friend like Sam who was steeped in the culture—the peculiar and specific culture—that was twenty-first-century Hollywood was definitely a step outside of Anna’s usual literate, well-bred box. And that, she had decided long ago, was a very good thing.

She’d made other friends in Los Angeles, too. Guy friends. There was Ben Birnbaum, son of Hollywood’s most prominent plastic surgeon to the stars, and a great guy, who unfortunately had a penchant for secrets. And there was Caine Manning, currently of Anna-and-Caine, who was actually a little bit older and who worked for Anna’s father at the latter’s investment company. Anna and Ben had been off and on for six months. Anna and Caine had been on for just a few weeks. She was still getting used to it.

While Sam continued hunting for her shoes, Anna walked out through the open sliding glass doors, onto the back deck, and gazed out at the pristine sands of Malibu beach.

“Fourth of July back in New York was never like this,” she called back to Sam. She felt a grin spread across her face.

“How would you know? You never spent the Fourth of July in Manhattan!”
Sam might have a point,
Anna mused, as she tried to recall if she ever
had
been in New York City for this holiday. Sam stepped out onto the redwood deck with two Stoli vodka–spiked all-natural lemonades, her favorite cocktail du jour. She handed one of the tall, frosted glasses to Anna and lifted her own high in the air. Anna saw that she was still barefoot.

“Fuck my flip-flops, I’ll find them later. Here’s to America, here’s to us and our comfortable lives that we’ve done nothing to earn, and here’s to some insane fun later on tonight with our alarmingly good-looking boyfriends. And here’s to Marty Martinsen never coming home.” “I’ll second . . . well . . . most of that.” Anna clinked glasses with her friend and then sipped her drink. “Honestly, I wouldn’t mind hanging here for the rest of the summer.” “Can you think of a better place to watch fireworks? You know we’ve got invitations to three different Fourth of July parties—including the cast party of

Hermosa Beach
and the CAA bash on the
Queen Mary,
by the by. But nothing could top this.” For the past week, they’d been house-sitting at a magnificent Malibu beach estate spread owned by Marty Martinsen, president of Transnational Pictures. Sam’s father had made many movies with Transnational, and Marty had become one of Jackson Sharpe’s only trusted friends in a town where a trusted friend was pretty much an oxymoron. Whenever he was leaving town, he’d call Jackson and offer his house to him for his use and pleasure. They both knew the offer was moot, because Jackson could afford to pay cash for any beachfront estate that he wanted, whether it was in Malibu or Bali, or on the dark side of the moon.

This time, though, when Marty called to say he’d be vacationing in Malta for two weeks, Sam had jumped at the opportunity to house-sit. Then she’d invited Anna to house-sit with her. Anna had quickly accepted. Going to Marty Martinsen’s estate with Sam was pretty much a guaranteed good time with her favorite Beverly Hills female friend. The place was more like a private beachfront hotel than a house. It came with a cook, a caretaker, and a maid, all of whom remained on the job even when Marty was out of town. The ultramodern structure had two-story-high glass windows that faced the ocean, and a modern, eclectic interior right out of
In Style
magazine.

The past week with Sam had been utterly relaxing and totally fun. Every morning they would sleep late, lounge on the sun-drenched terrace eating blueberry pancakes and reading fashion mags, and then take a long beach walk. After that, they’d settle down for the summer job Sam had snagged for them. Their chief responsibility was to write coverage—synopses and their considered personal opinions—on the dozens of screenplays that were sent to Action Jackson Productions offices on the Transnational lot every single day. When Anna had protested that that she had no experience reading or evaluating screenplays, Sam had laughed. Hollywood, she explained, was all smoke and mirrors. No one had experience until they got started.

“That sunset is a total waste, unless you’ve got naked guys serving you. If they’re here, I can’t see them from this angle,” came a feminine voice behind them.

Anna shut her eyes briefly, the better to prepare herself for the onslaught that was Cammie Sheppard. Cammie and Sam had been best friends forever, which meant that if Anna wanted to hang out with loyal Sam, she had to put up with the anything-but-loyal Cammie. When Anna thought about which friends of Sam she had to tolerate, Cammie was right at the top of the list. Living proof that there was no correlation between outer and inner beauty, Cammie was the kind of girl whose arrival at parties caused anyone with a pulse to stop talking midsentence and stare.

BOOK: Heart of Glass
12.41Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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