Bernard Page 2
     If it is a guy. Just what I really need: a lesbian geek after my booty!
She snorted, thinking about Skye at the office.
     I love you too, sweetie. But please ...!
     She clicked on Drafts and her message disappeared.      "i luv u" stared back at her, in jet-black Arial on electric white.
     Abruptly she scrolled down: there was nothing at the bottom of the message, no giveaway, no electronic signature. The white screen gaped at her, blank and a little intimidating, and she scrolled back up to the teasing, deceptively direct, incomprehensible message.
     Don't seem too eager. Play a little hard to get, like in high school. Maybe not reply at all~no, he may go away.
     Ahh, you really must be desperate! said an evil little voice inside her head.
     Carmen shook herself.
     Reply with "Who is this?" or "Do I know you?" or

"And I love New York!" or, best of all, "I love you too, Sam!" Mortify him. Or her.
     Suddenly she slumped in her chair.
     I'm such an idiot. One more smart-aleck corporate jerk getting off by getting me to buy something that will just make me look fat, feel ugly, and destroy the planet. It's a god damn ad campaign! She had been online for half her life, and the first rule of cyberspace she had ever learned was, "Never believe anything you see on the web unless you know the sender."
     "i luv u," the words said to her, mockingly.
     And I don't "luv u"! she felt like shouting at the screen.
     But she couldn't~not yet, anyway~shoot those cruel words, even in moronic IM speak, on the cyber express back to TJX037X2, whoever he/she was.
     Oh no! It's not Jack Kushner! She had caught him staring at her in the office kitchen and once or twice down a long, lonely corridor. The saddest desire in his huge