"Emma, you seriously have to get out and have fun, you're going to do nothing for yourself if you continue being a bookworm. Never will you find yourself a man." Alexis Taylor said matter-of-factly, as she took a bite out of her apple, her pale blue eyes looking in the direction of her friend.

Emma rolled her eyes and put the book she was reading down on the arm rest of her sofa, "Alex, I am quite content being curled up on the sofa with a good read and peace and quiet." She spoke the last three words with emphasis as she gave her friend a pointed look, hoping that she would take the hint and drop the subject. Unfortunately for her, it only fueled the proverbial fire as a chortle of laughter escaped from her friend's mouth.

"No, what you need is a good lay!"

Emma's mouth dropped open at her friend's blunt statement. She felt her face heat up as she stared wide-eyed at her friend. Maybe Alexis was right but she was damned sure that she would NEVER admit to it aloud.

"Oh, come on Em's. I know how you look at some of the hot men that saunter around the city, your eyes glazing over, and your face heating up in embarrassment."

Oh, she was good.

Emma looked away, "And your point being?"

"You need to have male piece of ass."

She felt her face growing even hotter, "Alexis."

Alexis ignored her pleaded cry as she sat up straighter in her chair and smiled broadly; "Hey, a few of us girls are going to The Beat for Andrea's birthday this Friday, you should totally come."

"Uh, no."

Alexis got up from where she sat and made her way over to the sofa, plopping down onto the comfy cushions and gave Emma a pouted look, "Please? You need to have more to life than some wacked-out fairytale ending of some book. Go out, have fun, meet a nice guy."

Emma knew that Alexis was forcing her way through her barriers, making her weak. She cursed her soft side as she felt herself slowly considering her offer to have fun. She bit her lip and looked at her friend with consideration. Should she go? Or should she not?

She wasn't really the partying type.

After a long moment or two she finally caved, jumping when Alexis squealed with delight and wrapped her arms tightly around Emma's shoulders. Emma pursed her lips together, trying to hide her grimace.

She had a bad feeling that she was going to regret that decision.

And regret it, she did.

Alexis had made her wear a skin-tight leopard print cocktail dress, matching high-heel shoes that would surely cause her feet to hurt traumatically later on in the evening, and make-up up the ying-yang.

She, in one word felt like a glorified hooker.

"Do I really have to wear this?" Emma asked for the tenth time that night, pulling down the hem of her skirt, the attempt had proven to be futile as the stretchy material resumed its original place halfway up her thigh.

"Would you stop bitching?" Alexis snapped, swatting at her friend's hand. "You are supposed to look sexy.

"I look like a slut!" Emma protested, trying as she may to get out of this deal she had made a few days prior.

"No, you don't."

"Yes I do," She growled, making yet another attempt to hide her legs more, "Why can't I just wear what I had planned to wear before?"

Alexis rolled her eyes, "Because you look like a damned librarian with that outfit on. No, we are going for sexy."

"I don't feel sexy."

She gave her a cheeky grin, "Oh you will once we get a few shots in you."

"I'll give you a shot in a minute." She threatened, glaring at her mischievous friend.

"Ooo, feisty," Alexis winked, "Save that for the fiery men."

Yep, she really was regretting that decision greatly.

She didn't even step fully out of her friend's car before the cat-calling started. She crossed her arms over her chest and stepped in the middle of Alexis and Anna-Lee, both of which enjoying the attention that was being directed at them.

Emma felt like crawling into a hole and dying. She hated this much attention, especially directed at her. She kept her gaze to the stoned walkway as they made their way to the mahogany double doors, passing by a couple of groups of incredibly attractive, well-built men who were gazing at the three of them.

She felt her face heat up as she heard some of their conversation, but also felt somewhat disturbed from their forwardness, wondering if they knew she could hear.

"Oh, that one in the leopard print is fine!"

One of the other men chuckled, "Yeah, I'd do her any day of the week! And look at her friends. Fine ladies they are."

She tried to calm her beating heart as they entered into the slightly darkened room, the blaring music emanating through the floor and unto her chest. It wouldn't do anyone any good if she passed out because of the large crowd, loud music, hot men, and the provocative murmurings of the people around her.

Her gaze lifted when she heard her name being called over the loud music, she was surprised that she could have heard her friend Andrea over the bass; but then again...

She smiled; leaving the little comfort her arms gave her to give the birthday girl a hug. After a moment she pulled away, placing a strand of dark brown, curly hair behind her ear, "Thank you so much for this present, gals! This is utterly amazing."

Instead of saying that it wasn't her idea Emma nodded once, a small smile playing on her lips as she watched her other friends chatting away, not a care in the world as they didn't notice the various men who eyed them as they passed.

She closed her eyes and sighed. She had never been good with men. Never. She remembered her first date and was embarrassed, vowing to never date again as long as she lived.

And here she was, conned into going to a club with her friends as they not only celebrated one of their younger friend's birthday but also tried to hook her up.

She had always been self conscious about her body and with the tight dress she was currently wearing she felt even more so. Did she ever tell her friends that? No. And boy did she ever feel stupid for not saying anything.

She shook her head and decided that she may as well enjoy it while she's here with friends and went to stand beside them at one of the corners, noticing a beer in their hands. Alexis quickly pushed a bottle into her own hands.

"You are so pushy!"

"You know me well, sister!"

Emma shook her head and took a sip of the cool and bitter liquid that entered her mouth and swallowed it, allowing herself to slightly unwind. She listened partly to the music playing and her friends conversing amongst themselves before eyes filtered over the dance floor, at least a hundred people were crammed into the room, a mixture of men and women dancing and dancing.

Having a grand old time.

And that's exactly what she should be doing at the moment instead of feeling self-conscious. Maybe Alexis was right, maybe she needed to let loose on her more...adventurous side.

But then again, she feared what that might do to her reputation. She frowned, what reputation would be ruined if she had a little fun every once and then? Perhaps her bookworm rep.

Emma was brought out of her thoughts when someone bumped into her, causing her to somehow lose her footing. She gasped out as someone wrapped their arms around her, holding her upright as they leaned in and spoke into her ear. She turned, holding her breath as startling sea-green eyes bore into her dark brown ones. His chiseled features and messy blond hair caused her breath to catch in her throat.

She felt that she couldn't breathe as he spoke; his Australian accent coupled with his hot breath hitting her neck caused shivers to run through her body.

He chuckled, "I believe that every woman seems to be falling for me since coming here."

She scoffed, feeling slightly irritated by his cocky attitude. Pulling out of his arms, ignoring the feeling she was getting from him, and the stares she was receiving from her friends; "Yeah, not when they're bumped into."

She didn't know where, but he looked familiar. It was going to bug her until she actually figure out where she's seen him before.

He gave her a cocky grin, "It would be only a matter of time before you fall into my arms like every woman."

She looked at him with surprise and disgust. Did he think that she would voluntarily drop her pants for him? Her gaze narrowed, "Has anyone ever told you that you are an arrogant son of a bitch?"

He chuckled, "Plenty of times, sweetheart. So you mind if I buy you a drink?"

She gave him an incredulous look, "Is this how you normally pick up women?"

"Nah, they're usually already three sheets to the wind by the time they come to me." Her gaze narrowed, clearly unimpressed by this tidbit of information.

"So, you're just trying to get me to that stage before you do anything, huh?"

"Pretty soon you'd probably be there, anyway."

"How dare you!"

He ignored her and asked in a bored tone, "So, can I buy you a drink?"

I don't th—"

"Yes!" Alexis spoke, cutting Emma off as she placed a slender arm over her shoulder. "She would very much like to get a drink.

"No, I don't."

"Oh come now, what could be so wrong?"

She shot the man a glare, "I already have a drink, thanks." To prove her point Emma held up her beer and without waiting for a reply she took off away from the small group, pissed off that someone, without knowing her, would insult her in such a way. She glared down at her skimpy outfit and scowled, she'd rather wear a damned towel.

Once she was outside she headed over to a free table and sat down, ignoring the cool metal of the chairs on her legs, and looked out into the distance. For an extremely attractive guy, he sure was an asshole.