Can Lucy Seduce Abs?
B Magazine, July 2002

Writer Lucy Hatherall flirted for England with out fave ex-Five pop star Abs...

'No one else will fancy you if you don't fancy yourself' says Peta. So on go the stripy boob tube and my favourite tight denims. Add my brand new cowboy boots, and I'm feeling pretty darn sexy and off to a good start.

I make my entrance with a big smile plastered across my face (don't forget, smile equals attractive). Abs pulls me up a seat next to the sofa and flashes me his cheeky boyish grin. I immediately go to work and hold on to his eye contact saying to myself, 'I want you'.

I start off with some 'light and breezy' conversation and ask Abs how he is. He launches into a monologue about his new solo carreer. I interject with the required 'mmm's' and 'oooh's' but I still seem to be interrupting rather than encouraging.

Maybe this is the moment to fantasise. As I stare into his big, dark brown eyes, I imagine what it would be like to wake up in the morning with those puppy eyes staring down at me. I suddenly get a grip when I catch a disturbed expression on Abs' face. Oh deas - I hope I wasn't unconsciously panting or anything distressing, like that...

Next step - subtle touches. I flutter my blue eyes from behind my blonde hair as I ask him about his tattoos (I've done my research). He displays hos artwork in all his glory and I can't help but lean forward and touch. Bingo! He loves this.

I maintain the eye contact (a winning effort) and encouraged, try another of Peta's flirt tips. I twist my hair round my fingers coyly, while I ask him about his perfect woman. 'A blonde perhaps?' I enquire, making an attempt at a sexy-movie-star pout. 'No!' he says laughing at my blatantly obvious tactics, 'I used to like the blue-eyed blonde thing, but now I go for brunetter.' Foiled, dammit.

The light conversation is drifting along nicely though and we're chatting about popstrel Holly Valance. 'I wouldn't mind a bit of her Kiss Kiss', he says looking me straight in the eye with a twinkle. This calls for some emergency flirting (I'm not going to be upstaged by that Aussie pop twiglet). Cue elaborate, husky, fake laughter in a bid to make Abs feel like the funniest guy alive. I'm not sure if it's working, but at least he laughs along, too.

I'm on a roll and confident enough to execute three flirt tactics simultaneously. I lean forward, flick my hair to bare a shoulder and twist my necklace around my finger. I carry on playing with my necklace until it feels like I'm getting repetitive strain injury. Finally, Abs throws a series of looks towards my neckline. 'I like your necklace. It's cute'.

Success! All I can think about now is the moment he gets down on one knee and asks me out on a date (fantasy number two). I ask him if he needs a party partner now he's no longer with the boy and find myself following it up with, 'You could always give me a ring...' (where did that come from?) Embarrassingly, Abs laughs off my offer. There's no promise of a rendezvouz and I'm disappointed.

But it's not over and I am shocked when Abs leans forwards to me again (hey, hey!) and takes hold of my necklace. 'I really like this you know'.

'Yeah, and it would look great on your bedroom floor', I say. Actually I don't. I want to, but instead I'm so taken aback, I mumble, 'Er, yeah, it's like a plectrum for the um, guitar from....'

'So do you play then?' he asks me.

'Er, no'. Then he touches my leg lightly and says, 'That's another thing I like, girls with hidden talents'.

He takes a good long look into my eyes and then with a smile and a handshake he's making his exit.

'Well you can at least give me a birthday kiss - it's my birthday today!' I shout after him (sorry Peta, I know desperation didn't figure on your list. but what's a girl to do?)

'Ahh, Happy Birthday darling', he says planting a kiss on my cheek.

As I walk out of the hotel, I'm pretty impressed with my lip service, but I can't help but wonder wheter I've just been out-flirted....

- Abs releases his debut solo single What You Got, on 12 August -