Good friend, great colleague, and talented writer Linda McMullen had this short fiction published this past winter’s Solstice at Typishly. It’s wry, smart, and tight, and it begins like this:
He was the product of a torrid affair between an Edith Wharton novel and a J. Crew catalogue, with his wavy Titian hair and his quarterback’s shoulders. He possessed, unselfconsciously, the elusive grace that emerges from old money and tennis lessons from the age of five. He could easily have followed his father into finance or his grandfather into the diplomatic service or his great-grandfather into the military; he would have been equally plausible as a second-stringer for the Patriots.
I was doused in the classics that I absorbed behind the perfume counter at Macy’s. I reaped the benefits of a genetic boon, a certain daintiness of wrist and ankle. I was the first of my mutt lineage to trace the sparkling path from a BA to an MBA to a career—and I Googled which fork to use before I met his parents.
Suffice it to say that we met abroad, in a country about to graduate from hosting the Peace Corps, already dancing near the maw of the resource trap. It was the third of July; I was the one who shook Ambassador Carnegie’s distinguished hand in the embassy’s receiving line. I shouldn’t have been there, but the Director was traveling, and the Deputy Director snorted that she had attended a sufficient number of warm-wine-and-tepid-mini-quiche affairs. So she handed the invitation to me.
Read the rest here.