Novels by Cecily von Ziegesar:
You Know You Love Me
All I Want is Everything
“Scandal is gossip made tedious by morality.”
– Oscar Wilde
Disclaimer: All the real names of places, people, and events have been altered or abbreviated to protect the innocent. Namely, me.
Ever wondered what the lives of the chosen ones are really like? Well, I’m going to tell you, because I’m one of them. I’m not talking about beautiful models or actors or musical prodigies or mathematical geniuses. I’m talking about the people who are born to it – those of us who have everything anyone could possibly wish for and who take it all completely for granted.
Welcome to New York City’s Upper East Side, where my friends and I live and go to school and play and sleep – sometimes with each other. We all live in huge apartments with our own bedrooms and bathrooms and phone lines. We have unlimited access to money and booze and whatever else we want, and our parents are rarely home, so we have tons of privacy. We’re smart, we’ve inherited classic good looks, we wear fantastic clothes, and we know how to party. Our shit still stinks, but you can’t smell it because the bathroom is sprayed hourly by the maid with a refreshing scent made exclusively for us by French perfumers.
It’s a luxe life, but someone’s got to live it.
Our apartments are all within walking distance of the Metropolitan Museum of Art on Fifth Avenue, and the single-sex private schools, like Constance Billard, which most of us go to. Even with a hangover, Fifth Avenue always looks so beautiful in the morning with the sunlight glimmering on the heads of the sexy St. Jude’s School boys.
But something is rotten on museum mile. . . .
B with her mother, arguing in a taxi in front of Takashimaya. N enjoying a joint on the steps
of the Met. C buying new school shoes at Barneys. And a familiar, tall, eerily beautiful blond girl emerging from a New Haven line train in Grand Central Station. Approximate age, seventeen. Could it be? S is back?!
THE GIRL WHO LEAVES FOR BOARDING SCHOOL, GETS KICKED OUT, AND COMES BACK
Yes, S is back from boarding school. Her hair is longer, paler. Her blue eyes have that deep mysteriousness of kept secrets. She is wearing the same old fabulous clothes, now in rags from fending off New England storms. This morning S’s laughter echoed off the steps of the Met, where we will no longer be able to enjoy a quick smoke and a cappuccino without seeing her waving to us from her parents’ apartment across the street. She has picked up the habit of biting her fingernails, which makes us wonder about her even more, and while we are all dying to ask her why she got kicked out of boarding school, we won’t, because we’d really rather she had stayed away. But S is definitely here.
Just to be safe, we should all synchronize our watches. If we aren’t careful, S is going to win over our teachers, wear that dress we couldn’t fit into, eat the last olive, have sex in our parents’ beds, spill Campari on our rugs, steal our brothers’ and our boyfriends’ hearts, and basically ruin our lives and piss us all off in a major way.
I’ll be watching closely. I’ll be watching all of us. It’s going to be a wild and wicked year. I can smell it.
Like most juicy stories, it started at a party