What’s a Woman to Do? (October 1, 2003)

What's a Woman to Do?Hardcover: 352 pages
Publisher: St. Martin’s Press; 1st edition (October 1, 2003)
Language: English
ISBN: 0312286872

When a corporate diva, Janeen Hampton-Giliam meets the kind of dream man that’ll make most women want to trade theirs in, a struggling marriage with a philandering husband gets even harder to maintain.

Her younger sister, Sissy, is having the time of her life playing madame in her own Law School prostitution ring until the only man who has ever given her exactly what she needed suddenly reappears only to cause more drama than she could imagine.

And then there’s Joyce- the eldest of the three, who spends most of her time praying for the sins of the other two, while at the same time dealing with hidden secrets of her own.

With so many scandalous dilemas hanging in the balance, What’s A Woman To Do?

What’s a Woman to Do?
by Victor McGlothin

Janeen Hampton-Gilliam eased back slowly against her leather chair, crossing her shapely legs, until her long frame was comfortably cradled in it. “I sat there staring at him for hours,” she said, just above a whisper. Softly clenching her bottom lip, between her teeth, she allowed her mind to drift back to the most intimate moments of her life. It occurred several weeks ago in New York City while she attended a Real Estate Management conference.

Val, her good friend and long time assistant eagerly listened on while taking in every word as Janeen continued sharing intimately provocative thoughts. “His smooth chocolate colored skin radiated beneath the bright lights of that lecture hall. Each day I tried to get a seat with a view. I would sit a row or two behind him, usually five or six seats over. You know, far enough away to stay hidden in the shadows of my world but close enough to hang on to the fringes of his.”

“Shoot, let me close this door,” Val said anxiously, from the opposite side of the large mahogany desk. “Janeen, you sure can tell a story. It’s like getting deep into a good book without having to turn the pages. You should be a writer girl.” Val wasted no time closing the office door before locking it. If she had a do not disturb sign, it would have been hanging off the knob on the other side. As Val returned to her perch and poised herself for an earful of someone else’s business, Janeen drifted even deeper into the sensual thoughts that had her wishing for more of the catalyst, which caused them in the first place. “He was so beautifully black like a rare onyx stone, tall, tailored and smooth without trying to be. Everything about him was effortless. There were several other women who noticed that about him too. Humph, some of ‘em more than just noticed but each time he’d give ‘em the brush off with a sultry no thanx and keep right on stepping. It must have been hard for him to block the onslaught of women sling-shotting their panties and room keys at him.” Janeen smiled when that particular memory came back to her as crisp as a new dollar bill. “He was the kind of man that makes a woman wish she could trade hers in,” she added, with a slight head tilt for emphasis sake. “For four full days of that real estate conference I watched him walk, talk, take notes on one boring speech after another without seeming bothered by them when mostly everyone else was trying their damndest to merely stay awake. For those four glorious days I down-loaded him into my memory, allowed him to captivate my mind, and welcomed him to become a part of me.”

Val was so entranced by the idea of the gorgeous mystery man that she had to stop herself from drooling while catching her breath. She even had to clear her throat before she could speak. “Uh-uhh, all that heat. Whoo-weee. Is it getting hot in here or is it just me?” She began fanning her face with an opened hand. “Why didn’t you say something to him? You know, go on up to the man and introduce yourself. You got it going on. I see the way men look at you around here.”

In fact, Janeen was a rather striking woman in her own right. Her smooth peanut butter colored complexion and short jet-black curly hair accentuated the deepest brown bedroom eyes imaginable. She was an attractive package by anyone’s standards.

“Oh I wanted to Val.” Janeen blushed at the compliment, thinking back. “’Almost did it once or twice but I couldn’t… out of practice I guess. But more than that, I was terrified that we might have gotten to talking and enjoyed it too much.”

“Would that have been so bad?” Val asked innocently. “Just talking sounds harmless enough.”

Janeen smiled and wrinkled her nose. “No-no-no. You don’t understand. With that kind of man, the conversation would have been superb; no doubt about that but stimulating conversation is powerful. It can take on a life of its own. I’ve seen it happen. Just talking can take you places you never intended to go and have you butt-naked before you can even remember if you packed your diaphragm.” Both women doubled over with laughter while momentarily forgetting where they were. “Can I get a witness?” Janeen added.

“Amen Sistah!” Val answered, with her hand raised in the customary testifying position.

After coming back to their senses, Val glanced at an 8X10 photograph of Janeen and her husband Raymond, of fifteen years, sitting on the nearby credenza. “That brotha you can’t seem to get off your mind sounds like the kind of man who tippin’ out was invented for,” Val suggested, with an I won’t tell if you won’t wink.

Janeen’s lips curled into a half smile. “Nah, I don’t believe in that but don’t get me wrong, I ain’t no saint. I’ve had some impure thoughts that a married woman shouldn’t.”

Val’s mouth flew opened. “Oooooh! Uhh-uh.”

“Huh, one the last day of the lecture, he came in late and took the chair right next to mine.”

“Nooooo, he didn’t?”

“I almost lost it. I was so turned on when his cologne hit me that I felt a little tingle between my legs. I could feel my nipples pushing themselves against my blouse too, probably trying to get out and introduce themselves. Before I knew what hit me, I had jumped up out of that seat and bolted for the door.

Like a small child hearing her first bedtime story, Val leaned in closer with a twinkle in her eyes as the story climaxed. “Uh… where did you go?” she whispered, from the deep throws of suspense.

“Well, I couldn’t make it to my hotel room fast enough so I ducked into the ladies room in the hotel lobby girl.”

Val’s eyes bucked with disbelief as she placed her hand over her mouth to muffle the scream she held in. “Janeen, you didn’t? Tell me you didn’t.”

“Huh, yes I did. ‘Told you that me and Ray haven’t been too cordial lately and I’m a very sensual creature, like all the women in my family.” The thought of getting that turned on over a man she’d never been with was too much for Val to fathom. She let out an unbridled shriek so loud, that co-workers outside Janeen’s spacious office took notice. “Believe me when I say this Val, if walls could talk…they’d be too ashamed to tell.”