my novel, Do Not Disturb, hotel heiress Honor Palmer finds herself
powerfully attracted to her business rival and all round arch-nemesis, the
dashing and ambitious Lucas Ruiz. When I was asked to think of
the benefits of dating your enemy, initially I could only think of three letters:
S-E-X. Sex, surely, is rarely hotter, or more passionate and
intense, that when there is a love/hate element involved.
When I worked
in the city (London’s Wall Street) in a very competitive, male, testosterone-driven environment, workplace feuds were common. When they occurred
between the sexes, they frequently involved a hefty dose of flirtation. Affairs--sparked by competition and fueled by the huge amounts of money and
power at stake for the winner--were rife. So was the burn out rate, both
professionally and romantically. It was an exciting place to work,
but it could also be utterly exhausting. I loved it, and met my husband
there, a relationship that began as outright war (seventeen years and four
children later, I think we can safely say I won); but just thinking about that
period now, the “sexual napalm” years, to quote John Mayer, makes me want to
lie down and take a long nap.
is often said that men and women can’t truly be friends. But I wonder if
they can ever truly be enemies either. Attraction, frustration and
suppressed lust have their role to play in male/female enmity and rivalry, just
as they do in love. So what are the benefits of dating your enemy?
1) Incredible sex.
2) Give it a decade or so and they might
just become your best friend.
3) The realization that you probably weren’t really enemies
in the first place. You were lovers, stuck on the wrong side of the