Hit Reply by Roxanne St. Claire

By SMW Staff

The story of three women who turn to former lovers on line for the inspiration, the adulation and the stimulation they need to conquer life’s most fundamental challenges: the will to survive, the need for security, the longing to be desirable…the quest for a guy who looks like Brad Pitt.


TO: foreveramber@quicklink.com <amber fleece>
FROM: Classreunion.com
SUBJ: Confirm membership
DATE: Thursday 7/29 8:45 PM

Welcome to classreunion.com, your connection to the past! We have received your electronic payment and membership survey response and are pleased to inform you that you are now included with your high school graduating class on the most popular classmate finder site on the Internet. Your listing will read:
• Amber Fleece
• 28 years old
• Residing in Boston, Massachusetts
• Employed as Director of Traffic, Millennia Marketing
• Marital status: single
• Email: foreveramber@quicklink.com
Have fun finding old friends and rekindling old flames. If you have questions, visit the site and press “help” for email assistance.

TO: wonderwoman@usol.com <stephanie hilliard>
FROM: foreveramber@quicklink.com <amber fleece>
SUBJ: I did it!!
DATE: Thursday 7/29 9:02 PM

Hey Stevie! Just got my confirmation from classreunion – I did it! I joined. Took three glasses of wine and an effing degree in engineering to master the electronic payment business – all for the privilege of NOW sending one lousy email. It’ll take me three more glasses of wine and forty-nine drafts, or it will be lousy. I only have one shot at Gray McDermott. I gotta make him remember the glorious experience of relieving me of my virginity on prom night ten years ago. *That* really pissed off my date! Write. Soon. Love. Amber
PS. How’s the afterlife, my domestic princess? Haven’t heard from you for a few days. IM me if you get on line tonight.

foreveramber@quicklink.com: wonderwoman@usol.com is sending you an Instant Message on Thursday 7/29 at 10:18 PM:
wonderwoman: Amber, are you still composing your email? Finally got the kids down. Are you there?
foreveramber: I am here. Merlot is nearly gone. But so is my brain and my nerve and my ability to type.
wonderwoman: Maybe you should let me preview your message to him – I’m sure it will be wonderful, but sometimes a second set of eyes can help. Like when you first started at the agency and couldn’t, well, you know, write.
foreveramber: She devil. I could write. I just couldn’t write as well as Madame Vice President Stevie Wonderwoman Walker. Hilliard. Whatever the hell name you use now. Are you still hyphenating?
wonderwoman: Oh, sure. No doubt it will carry a ton of weight when I apply for the coveted Kindergarten Room Mom position. BTW, you know what today is, don’t you?
foreveramber: July 29 here. Whoo-wee! You are going to be thirty-five tomorrow. Happy Birthday Eve, Steverino. You are still gorgeous and women of all ages hate you.
wonderwoman: Thank you. It’s easy for you to say that since you spent your last birthday at a Boston nightclub drinking raspberry flirtinis. I will spend the evening reading THE LITTLE RED HEN MAKES A PIZZA and watching “My Lover, My Stalker” on Lifetime.
foreveramber: Brent still out of town?
wonderwoman: Till Saturday. Don’t go there. So, what are you going to say to the one that got away?
foreveramber: Here’s what I have so far: Hey stud, I’ve thought about you every day for the last ten years and I hope you’re not married and still gorgeous, funny and built to last for hours. Think he’ll respond?
wonderwoman: That oughta get him to hit reply. With his…never mind.
foreveramber: And darla, his nevermind is something to revere, let me tell you. Speaking of gorgeous and built, remember you told me about a copywriter by the name of Tom Markoff who used to work at the agency before I got there? Well, guess who waltzed back into Millennia Marketing last week and landed his oh-so-fine tush in the office of Senior Vice President and Creative Director? <big evil grin>
foreveramber: Hey…Stevie? You still there? What’s taking so long?
wonderwoman: I’m here. I thought I heard the Prince of Wails.
foreveramber: Your pants are so on fire. I recall a conversation back when I was your slave…er, administrative assistant. BTW, I finally hired my own – and who do I pick when I have my choice of Wellesley grads in leather miniskirts? A forty-five year-old who looked suspiciously confused when I mentioned search engines.
wonderwoman: Why pick her?
foreveramber: She’s sweet and eager and she worried about my cough in the interview. I know, I know. Freud would have a field day.
wonderwoman: Did I say anything? Go back to Tom. What conversation back when?
foreveramber: When you referred to Tom Markoff as the one man who turned you into liquid from the waist down.
wonderwoman: Mmmm. A total pool. But there was this one little problem named Mary Grace, mother of his child, woman in his bed, co-owner of his last name.
foreveramber: Mary Grace? Sounds like a minister’s wife.
wonderwoman: Tom Markoff is no minister.
foreveramber: He’s a hottie. Very Richard Gere-ish with a bit of a George Clooney thing going on. Even has a few silvers among the black hair…that hangs just a tad over the collar. Tres bien, merci. You two would make a stunning set.
wonderwoman: Hello? Reality check, please. Remember the hyphenated last name? Kindergarten class mom? I couldn’t last five minutes in the same room with that man.
foreveramber: Oh really??? So it was more than longing gazes across the conference room table, hmmmm?
wonderwoman: I can’t believe he came back to Millennia. I’ll never forget it when he quit.
foreveramber: You didn’t answer, ww. Must inform you that at his first staff meeting, he not-so-casually asked if anyone stayed in touch with you.
foreveramber: Stevie? Are you there?
wonderwoman: The Prince is wailing for real this time. Gotta go. Email the letter to Gray before you send it, okay? Don’t blow your chance at the reunion of your dreams. Bye.
foreveramber: Oh, I don’t give a dog bone anyway. He’s probably fat, ugly and doesn’t look anything like Brad Pitt anymore. BTW, Stevie, you don’t mind that I gave Tom Markoff your email addy do you?
foreveramber: Hey – Stevie Wonderwoman? You there? You there? Ruh Roh.

TO: grayscale@connectone.com <gray mcdermott>
FROM: foreveramber@quicklink.com <amber fleece>
SUBJ: tripping down memory lane
DATE: Friday 7/30 2:00 AM

Hi Gray McDermott…remember me? Amber Fleece from Lincoln High? I saw your name on the classreunion.com list and couldn’t resist saying hello. Hope you are well. I notice you live in Dallas. I’m still in Boston, running the traffic department of an ad agency. I live alone in Brookline, but still get out to the burbs to see my dad on the weekends. I hear rumblings of a ten-year class reunion next summer. Any chance you’d grace the old halls of LHS with your presence? Drop me a note and let me know how you’re doing. Best, Amber Fleece

TO: wonderwoman@usol.com <stephanie hilliard>
FROM: foreveramber@quicklink.com <amber fleece>
SUBJ: Oops – I sent it to him first
DATE: Friday 7/30 8:00 AM

Happy Birthday, Steverella! The merlot weakened my resolve (amazing how it does that) and my finger hit…send. Trust me, it was pure drivel. As I re-read in the light of day, it sounded kind of *corporate* if you know what I mean. I wanted to be so effing funny but instead I sent an endless array of prepositional phrases that you would have hated. Sorry, but no one is funny after six glasses of wine and I knew that when I poured ‘em and drank ‘em. Did manage to squeeze in the “live alone” bit, though. Listen…is that Tom Petty singing? “The waiting is the hardest part.” Love. Amber.

TO: wonderwoman@usol.com <stephanie hilliard>
FROM: tmarkoff@millenniamarketing.com <tom markoff>
SUBJ: Feeling some wonder-lust…
DATE: Friday 7/30 11:00 AM

Hey there Stephanie Walker. Guess where I am? Wandering the corridors of MM and it makes me ~wonder~ instead of wander…whatever happened to my friend Stephanie? The beautiful blonde with soul in her blue eyes and heart in her smile? I heard you got married and moved to ORLANDO? What’s up with that? I might not have returned to the “new” Millennia as the conquering Creative Director if I knew you’d blown this popstand already. Ah, well, the ugliness of the past forgotten, it seems, at least by the His Majesty GW – I made him beg for me. The lovliness of the past, however, is remembered every time I walk by the video closet where someone else begged so long ago. Write if the spirit or anything else moves you. Tom ps. happy birthday.

TO: afleece@millenniamarketing.com <amber fleece>
FROM: wonderwoman@usol.com <stephanie hilliard>
SUBJ: How you will die
DATE: Friday 7/30 2:00 PM

Amber, you sneaky, double-crossing, no good little witch. Sorry to attack you at work, but thanks for the perfect thirty-fifth birthday present. Just what I needed. A flash from my past to remind me of all the stuff that’s missing from my life. Why did you give Tom Markoff my email??? I’m married. He’s married. He hasn’t forgotten anything, either, I can tell you that. Oh fuck. My whole body went numb when I saw his name. I’ll write back to him tonight. I better learn from your lesson and stop at two glasses before I hit send. Oh fuck. I think I’ll pack up the stroller and hit Saks to punish Brent for being gone on my birthday. Oh fuck fuck fuck fuck. I could kill you. xoxox, Stevie

TO: wonderwoman@usol.com <stephanie hilliard>
FROM: jdesmond@millenniamarketing.com <julie desmond>
SUBJ: RE: how you will die
DATE: Friday 7/30 2:04 PM

Hello. I am Julie Desmond, administrative assistant to Amber Fleece. Ms. Fleece is out of the office most of the day and asked me to review her email in anticipation of a time-sensitive message from a client. Unfortunately, I’m fairly new and didn’t recognize all of the email addresses and opened yours in error. I will forward it to Ms. Fleece and sincerely apologize for the inconvenience. Best wishes — and, by the way, Happy Birthday – 35 is a really nice age – enjoy! Julie.