Ivy Winston was pretty sure she wasn’t crazy, but it worried her that her roommates didn’t hear the grunts and moans and screams that awakened her mid-day. The row house Ivy shared with three other women was only a few blocks from the hospital where she worked the graveyard shift as an emergency room nurse. It was in an upper middle class
neighborhood and there were no mental hospitals or sex clubs nearby to explain the sounds that seemed to be caused by two very different emotions, agony and ecstasy. San Francisco
Desperate for a good days rest after a grueling weekend of tending to the sick, injured, and stupid—a man who shot his own foot while cleaning his gun, and a teenage boy who nearly drank himself to death on a dare—Ivy fell into bed late one Monday morning positive that today she would sleep like the dead. And then it began. One woman kept crying oh God, oh God, before abruptly changing her tone, and cursing God. A man uttered one uh, uh, after another but just when Ivy expected to hear a satisfied end grunt he let out an anguished cry.Ivy didn’t know whether to be jealous of what these people were getting, or dismayed at the lack of happy endings. Either way, she couldn’t stand another minute of not knowing who and where these people were and why they were getting so much, when she couldn’t even remember the last time she’d had sex. Okay, that wasn’t exactly true.