Chapter One

 

Kiki


 

Have you ever had a goat walk all over your butt? I’m serious here. And somehow, I’m supposed to stay in a zen state as a baby goat tramples his little hooves all over my body? 

My best friend, Lola, has had some nutty ideas in her life. ‘It’s all in the sake of a healthier lifestyle,’ she says. 

Once, she had us paddleboarding. Which yes, nothing out of the ordinary. But, instead of starting in a lake, or in the intracoastal, she had us start on the beach. 

It took us about thirty minutes just to paddle past each breaking wave. We had a little section of people on the beach cheering us on. I’m sure they just liked watching us wipeout. 

Talk about a workout. I was so exhausted from fighting the waves I couldn’t go on any further. 

Another time she thought it would be fun to head down to Miami and walk from South Beach to downtown. Which we did, but I wished I’d known ahead of time that was the plan. I thought we were heading south to party, because that is usually what one does in Miami. But, I wouldn’t have worn my favorite black heels. 

Sure there’s wanting to be adventurous, but there’s a fine line between adventure and just plain silly. 

And maybe this is it. 

I’m not actually complaining because I’ve never been part of a routine where it has not benefited me greatly, but I just don’t quite understand bending yourself into the shape of a pretzel and then thinking, you know what this also needs? GOATS. Lots of little goats jumping all over us.

Yoga with Goats. Goga? Goga on. Super creative title. I know. You’re welcome.

Point is, Lola thinks it’s fun to try new things, and well Poppi and I should probably have our heads examined because we go along with whatever hairbrained plan she has. 

I like to say we’ve gotten smarter, but this ...this right now...is insane. 

“I’m pretty sure this goat just got to third base,” I whisper to Lola, trying to keep my yoga pose in check. 

This is supposed to be a serene space. It’s got all the elements to make a person relax. Soft music. Beige walls. Hardwood flooring with blue yoga mats spaced equally around the place. Even the yoga teacher is the epitome of tranquility. Her name is Flower, I kid you not, and she has her hair piled into a wicked knot on the top of her head. Other yogis would be jealous. 

“Close your eyes and work through the movements,” Flower purrs at the front of the class. “Now move into downward dog pose. Remember to make sure you don’t lose your goat.” Flower gives a sideways glance at Poppi. Her goat took off long ago and is now across the room eating a potted plant. 

I stare at my goat, his big brown eyes stare back. “Please stay with me little guy,” I whisper as I move my body into downward facing dog while the goat balances perfectly on my ass. 

You could say my goat and I have gotten pretty close. 

“Now move into crab pose. Keep your goat steady.” 

Sweat trickles down from my forehead as I glance at the teacher who glides into the pose with ease, her goat looking like he’s riding out the perfect wave. “Are you going to get your goat?” I ask Poppi. 

Her mouth drops open as she scans the room, locating her goat. “Nah, he seems pretty happy over there.” She waves a hand, and then focuses her attention back on me. “Also, I still can’t believe you’re engaged, Kiki.” 

I bite my lip, trying my best to keep my inner yogi at peace. “It’s not too soon is it?” 

Poppi’s elbows hit the mat as she stops posing. “No, it’s like a dream come true. Henry’s perfect.” 

I smile. “He is perfect, right?” I still can’t believe I’m getting married. Me. Kiki Kingsley is engaged. 

And Henry really is just soooooo perfect. 

Even the way he proposed was perfection. We’d only been dating a month, and he took me out to La Pearl. It’s the type of place where you have to call months and months in advance to get into. I’d always wanted to go. I was ecstatic that he asked me, and I remember spending hours finding the perfect dress. It was a hot little red number with matching shoes. 

And then it happened. 

It was a little cliche, but still so romantic. 

He ordered champagne to the table, and there was an engagement ring in the glass. Shock doesn’t even cover the expression I wore on my face. 

When I glanced over to him, he was on one knee, asking me to be Mrs. Henry Faniki. I never even knew his last name, and I was saying yes over and over before I had the chance to put the two together. Kiki Faniki. Yes, my name will rhyme. 

“Just the name,” I breathe out, keeping my pose and goat stable. 

“Kiki Faniki, the first woman on Mars. See it sounds more prestigious when you put it doing something important,” Lola says. 

“Breathe,” Flower huffs, staring in our direction, obviously not very happy with us. “And no talking.” 

“But, I’ll never go to Mars,” I whisper back. 

“You never know that.”