“So, my ex list,” I begin, rummaging around in his console for the mini candy canes I stashed there last week. He does a double take, obviously not knowing they were there until just now.
I hold one up, offering it to him.
“To the candy, or to listening to me talk about my plan?” I say, peeling the cellophane off a candy cane and sticking the non-hook end in my mouth.
“Both,” he says, turning his attention back to the road.
I honor his wishes. For about thirty seconds.
“The list is kind of depressingly short,” I say.
“I never realized just how pathetic my love life was. Did you?”
Mark checks his mirror and changes lanes. “Can we not?”
“I didn’t include any of my boyfriends before tenth grade. Do you think I should have?”
He snorts. “What, your prepubescent affair with Kyle Cameron wasn’t one for the ages?”
I ignore this. “I also crossed off anyone that was married—”
“—or anyone that was mean.”
Mark looks over sharply. “Who was mean to you?”
I smile at his protectiveness. “Jeff Downing from eleventh grade was kind of a jerk. Called me fat.”
Mark makes a growling noise. “Who else?”
“Elton Drake. Stockbroker I dated a couple years ago. Yelled a lot.”
“Just bark, right? No bite?”
I pat his arm. “Just bark. And I kicked him to the curb.”
He gives a terse nod. “All right. So, who is on the list? How many people we talking?”
“And you’re going to believe a little old lady that one of them is your soulmate, or some shit like that?”
I study his profile. “Why are you so grumpy about this? You have Sheila. Why shouldn’t I have someone, too?”
Mark scratches his cheek. “I’m not saying I don’t want you to be happy. I just think if you were going to be happy with any of those guys, you would have been. You broke up with them for a reason.”
“Well, to be fair, three of the seven broke up with me.”
I smile at his loyalty. “Totally. Which is why I need to figure out a way to show them what they’re missing. Is it true that guys think women in elf costumes are hot?”
He gives me an incredulous look. “What?”
“You know,” I say, gesturing at midthigh. “Striped socks? Short green skirt? Cute little hat?”
He shakes his head. “Times like this, I deserve an award for having a female best friend.”
“It’s not like I asked you to take me shopping for the outfit. I’m just saying if I volunteered to dress up like an elf at the annual Christmas parade, would that be hot?”
“Quit being weird.”
“That’s not an answer.”