Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Enemy Territory

"You can't say anything, but Ian almost has a girlfriend!"
"What?" I spat, nearly taking out a pedestrian as I made a right turn.
"Yeah!" said Jen, excitedly, "Her name's Amanda, and he took her up to the cabin for Labor Day with all of us."
"Wait, Ian actually brought a girl home?" I asked, glancing at my GPS to get my next direction. 
"Yeah, you know how that never happens, so he must really like her," Jen said.
"Wow, well good for Ian! Really, I'm happy for him."
Thank Chanel Jen was telling me this over the phone, so I just had to make my voice seem genuine and didn't have to sincerely smile, or try not to death grip the wheel.
"They were on the phone for like two hours the other day too," Jen added.
"You have arrived," my GPS told me as I swung into a parking spot across the street from an aged physics building on the campus of Michigan State University.
"Well I just made it to Sarah's dorm, so I think we'll stop over at visit you tomorrow before I head home. Tell David I hope he feels better," I said, my heart still reeling from the Ian news.
"Sounds perfect!"
"Love you!"
"Love you too!"
And as soon as I hung up I dialed Sarah. This was my first solo trip to visit her at school, and two weeks apart was simply too much to handle, I had missed my best friend far too much.
As soon as I saw her crossing the street, I leapt from my car in excitement. We were going out for a solid night of quality college partying at her school, and I had been looking forward to this all day. After six hours of organic chemistry, four hours of work, and an hour drive, me and my best friend were reunited. 
"Sarah, I have major news," I said, beckoning her into the car.
"What? What? I just talked to you half an hour ago!"
"I just got off the phone with Jen-"
"Oh my god, what?"
"Ian almost has a girlfriend."
"WHAT?" Sarah shouted.
This was why were best friends. Because we could scream our heads off like this together.
And also why we were in the car, and not out walking down the street, or people might actually see how weird we are.
"Well, I bet she's a slut." Sarah said, bitterly and I cracked up.
I was supposed to be over Ian. I really needed to be. But there was still this tiny glimmer of hope at the very, very back corner of my heart...
Now that corner was about to become as dark as the rest of my heart and soul.
"I need to get drunk."

"Burnett's? Really?" I cringed as the guy behind the frat house's makeshift bar mixed my drink, "At least this is the second drink of the night," I said to Sarah.
The perks of living at home: better alcohol. Going from Ciroc to Burnett's was a bit of a shock.
Sarah, her two friends, and I stepped out into a cool corner of the hallway to finish our drinks.
People were friendly up at Michigan State, or maybe, it was better put that drunk people at Michigan State were friendly.
"-I'm Steve," the blonde guy standing next to me held out the hand that wasn't holding a Bud Lite Platinum.
"Xaylia," I smiled back. The guy was decently cute. No Ian, but cute.  I shook that thought out of my mind as fast as it had come.
"You might not want to talk to her when you find out where she's going to school," Sarah said, slightly giddily.
"Sarah! You tell everyone and you're gonna get me shot," I laughed.
"Where do you go?" asked cute Steve.
"Community college," I smiled.
"And she's transferring to UofM!" Sarah cut in.
"Really?" said Steve, a teasing smile playing on his lips.
Michigan State and University of Michigan was the rivalry that divided the entire state of which I lived. And this was not the place to be admitting my future school plans, or risk getting dumped in the river or something.
"-Come up to my room, it's got a killer sound system," Steve was saying.
He was playing my current favorite song as we did a shot of tequila. People seemed to come and go. Sarah kept slipping in and out to call the guy she was currently interested in. Hannah and Meghan, Sarah's friends who had come along with us, kept drinking after I gratefully ditched the Burnett's. Steve kept playing my favorite songs. One guy was drinking tequila straight from the bottle. It all seemed to blur together with the content smile on my face. This was the college life I sometimes wished I lived. Here I was, wearing a cute outfit, with a cute senior guy's arm around me and my best friend on my other side.
Only thing that could be better?
Maybe the alcohol, but you can't have it all.
"You really want to go see him, don't you?" I said, taking Sarah's hands in mine.
"Yes," Sarah sighed, her eyes glinting excitedly.
"Alright, let's go," I concluded.
"Really?" Sarah said excitedly, "You want to go?"
"Why the hell not? The night is still young!" I said, twirling in place as Sarah clapped in excitement.
I felt a hand on my waist and Steve pulled me over to him, "Going so soon?"
"We're popular girls," I said. We had been here a while, and Sarah wanted to go see Caleb, the guy she was interested in.
"I can tell," he said, and I swear my heart stopped when his lips touched mine.
It didn't feel right. I couldn't just kiss a random guy like this. His kiss was greedy, his enchantment with me was just as obvious. But I couldn't do this.
I pulled away after just a moment, and waved a flirty goodbye before following my new friends out of the room.
"Oh my God," I said as Sarah and I spilled out with some of the party onto the lawn, "Ugh, Sarah, I've never done that before!"
"Kissed a random guy?"
"I've kissed two guys ever in my life!"
"Well now you've kissed a third, you've got to kiss a random guy every once in a while, college experience and all that," Sarah tried to assure me, as I doubted my life choices.
Three guys ever. What a wild life I lived. But the other two all had meaning to them, but this... this was weird...
Sarah and I left Hannah and Megan to head to a house party on the other end of campus to meet Caleb. It began to drizzle as Sarah and I held hands and wandered to the mysterious house that Caleb was at. His drunken directions were no help to us, and by the time we had gotten there, the party was winding down and we had ended up going completely out of our way to get to the house.
My buzz was wearing off as a friend of Caleb's, who was badly in need of Proactiv and contacts, kept trying to talk to me. Sarah was off flirting with a very drunk Caleb in the bathroom. The house was quiet, until the arrival of the guys who actually lived there a while later. But it was only so long that I could keep trying to make conversation with these guys and Sarah and I were back walking in the rain and holding hands.
"I'm trying not to judge Caleb on how drunk he was," I said to Sarah.
"He was really drunk," she laughed.
"But he seems to like you, and he is cuter than he looked in his pictures," I said in his defense.
When we crawled into bed a while later, my thoughts turned back to earlier this evening, "I hear that Ian almost has a girlfriend, and a random guy ends up kissing me, what is my life?"
"I really want to know more about this Amanda girl," Sarah said darkly.
"Me too! But I can't find out any more from Jen without looking suspicious," I said. Jen had no idea Ian and I had a thing once upon a time.
"Andrew!" Sarah said at once.
"What about Andrew?" I said, "Oh!" I realized a moment later.
"Andrew would know! He's Ian's brother-"
"They're close, he would tell him!"
"Let's call Andrew!"
"It's 3am!"
"And it's a Friday night, Andrew probably just got back from the bar or something!"
"But, but, Andrew's at his parent's house, which means him and Ian are probably a room apart right now-"
"We've got to find out more about her!"
"Tomorrow, we'll call him tomorrow at a normal hour of the day."
"Ok, deal," Sarah agreed.
"Tonight was super fun," I said, smiling up at the ceiling from the loft.
"I'm so glad you had a good time!" Sarah said.
"Getting drunk with my best friend? How could I not?"

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