Urban Cowgirl 3.0

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“What about a cute little brownstone? Those are always so trendy!” Monica gushes over an ad for an apartment that’s hilariously out of my price range.

“Why not move into a suit at the Plaza?” I squeal with exaggeration. Monica rolls her eyes at me as she pours herself a third glass of wine.

“Well you can’t leave Manhattan. That’s for sure.” She reaches over my shoulder and clicks out of an ad for a charming studio in Brooklyn.

“Why ever not?” I sip from my glass. Ben catches my eye and gives me a conspiratorial wink.

“Its, like, self-imposed exile!” Monica has always had a flair for the dramatic.

“You know what you could do, Ashley?” Ben chimes in. “Find a place in Jersey. You could get an identical apartment for half the price over there.”

“You can’t be serious!” Monica shrieks, spilling a few drops of wine onto her wood floors.

“If you can give me one legitimately good reason why that’s a bad idea then I’ll drop it,” I put my hands up. Monica scrambles for an answer but ultimately comes up with nothing. “That’s what I thought.” I don’t bother hiding my smug smile.

“You’re a shameless elitist, sister of mine,” Ben teases. Monica opens her mouth to debate but quickly closes it.

“It’s a sign that I’ve had too much to drink when I can’t think of a comeback against my idiot brother,” Monica sighs and drains her glass. “I’m going to bed. And remember, Ashley, you can stay here as long as you like.”

“Are you just saying that so I won’t move to Jersey?” I ask.

“Yes.” Monica disappears into her room.

“I think she thought we were serious,” I lean over and whisper to Ben.

“That’s half the fun,” Ben replies. “Even sober, Monica is terrible at figuring out when I’m joking and when I’m not.”

“That must’ve made for an amusing childhood,” I smirk into my wine glass before I take another sip. I’m careful not to overdo it like I did last night. Though, if Ben is planning on cooking another breakfast tomorrow morning, I could weather any hangover.

“Once, I convinced her for a whole week that our parents literally had eyes in the backs of their heads after she kept getting in trouble. The truth was, she had no idea how to be sneaky.” I stifle a laugh quickly followed by a yawn.

It’s getting late and I have work in the morning but it’s always nice to sit and talk with Ben.

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