originally published in New Pop Lit

It was where movies stars used to go and rest up, be pampered, and consider the next script their agents had just sent over. A series of modest bungalows set around a beautiful turquoise pool. A pleasant young man in a white jacket ferrying trays of drinks — cocktails, since wine wasn’t so popular back then. Maybe some canapés.

Here she stopped him by holding up her hand — slim, smooth, dripping with rings, all from him, the most recent an African ruby she wore on her index finger. He joked that it was like the Pope’s, given the…