ARTIFACTUAL (BOOK 1)
Mandy stands to inherit the family legacy--a famous
Philadelphia adult toy store and museum called Erotique--but she first has
to meet the terms of the will and spend the night. With the help of her best
friend, Bruce, she soon discovers the exhibits are VERY educational and her
feelings for Bruce run deeper than she realized.
PRIMARILY M/F, ROMANCE, CONTEMPORARY,
PARANORMAL, EXPLICIT ADULT FICTION
"You've gotta be kidding me!" Bruce took the
proffered legal document and scanned it. "That's just so ... so Scooby Doo."
Mandy snickered as she dove into her taco salad. "Wanna hear the best part? I
have to do it on the next full moon."
"Amazing. Just amazing. Where is this place, anyway? If it's in a rough
neighborhood, I'm going with you."
"Oh, come on! Don't tell me you've never heard of it? It's only the most
celebrated sex shop in Philly, maybe even on the entire east coast." Mandy
fished in her backpack and pulled out a glossy catalog. "This," she said,
proudly handing it to Bruce, "is Erotique."
"Oh! Okay, I'm a little slow. I just put two and two together. So, your great
aunt is... was the notorious Miss Vivian? I'd no idea."
"Yup. I come from a long line of lusty ladies who've used sex--in one way or
another--to succeed in this man's world," she winked. "The shop's been in the
family for generations. My great-great grandmother opened it in 1897 as a
treatment center for 'hysteria.' It was one of the first places in the city to
have electricity which, of course, powered the equipment. Once upon a time,
there were eighteen electro-mechanical vibrators in operation from the time the
shop opened in the morning until it closed in the evening. She made a small
fortune. Booked months in advance. Regular customers, too, from affluent
families. They just kept--pardon my pun--coming."
Bruce just shook his head, still absorbing the news.
"As more and more households got electricity, she gradually shifted from selling
the service to selling the actual merchandise for home use. And, she made sure
her products were always cheaper than the model Sears advertised as 'a device
for anxiety and female tension.' Those mainstream promotions disappeared in the
1930s, when the porn industry made it impossible to overlook a vibrator's true
purpose. Even so, a few of the 'climax closets'--as Aunt Viv called 'em--stayed
in operation clear through World War II. Her predecessor, my great-great aunt
Sophie, even accepted ration coupons in payment: sugar, coffee, gasoline,
"Whoa! Slow down," Bruce interjected. "Where'd you get all this information,
Mandy shrugged, "I grew up with it. Some of it was bound to sink in. It's
fascinating stuff, huh?"
"And it's all yours now--the whole enchilada? That makes you a very wealthy
"Not yet," Mandy reminded him. "First, I have to meet the terms of her will and
spend the night in the shop--alone.