"I feel like I'm still drunk," Sarah said, blinking in the beam of sunlight that was spreading through the folds of the shades onto our lofts.
"That means it was a good night," I said with a yawn, despite the fact that I had been awake for at least the past half-hour.
I could never sleep when I drank. I don't know what it was, but I would get maybe four hours of sleep max, and be perfectly fine until 6pm when I would crash.
The sunlight streamed through the amber leaves of the trees as Sarah and I made our way down the shop lined street of her college campus, clutching iced Starbucks drinks in our hands.
"I think I overreacted," I sighed, "about kissing Steve."
"You finally came around?" Sarah said, taking a sip of her iced carmel macchiato.
"I'm over it," I shrugged, "Shit happens. He was cute. And a senior."
"That's my girl," Sarah said, holding out her drink and we clinked our plastic cups together in a toast.
"So I was talking to Ian," Jen began.
I raised one eyebrow. Jen, Sarah, Jen's boyfriend David, and I were all watching the game in David's apartment, catching up for a few moments before Sarah and I had to head home. I had to work and Sarah was going home for the night with me.
"And he says you need to talk to Andrew Kang."
"Because he's still into you, and you need to stop leading him on."
"Me? Leading him on?" I stared at her incredulously, "Jennifer, I haven't talked to him at all in like a week! He asked me out, it didn't work out, I was busy."
"Well he talks about you all the time."
"What am I supposed to say? He's a nice guy, he really is, but I just don't find him that attractive," I admitted.
"That you don't like him!"
"How am I supposed to do that?"
"Text him, just be honest!"
"Jen, that's a lot easier said than done if I want to try and be a nice person."
"Jen's right," Sarah interjected.
"Thanks Sarah," Jen said with a smile.
"Just text him," Sarah said.
I sighed, "Fine. I'll brainstorm something on the way home."
"I CAN'T DO THIS!" I shouted, once-again death gripping the wheel of my car, "This is so mean, and so insensitive, and it's like breaking up with someone I was never even with and-"
"And what?" Sarah said, re-reading the perfect text I had managed to compose.
"I've got to call Andrew."
"What?" Sarah exclaimed, "We're going to text him, it's easier!"
"Not that Andrew," I said quickly, "Andrew Davis. He's Andrew Kang's best friend, I've got to warn someone on the other side of the fence what I'm about to do."
"Fine, that's a good idea, and Xaylia, this text is really good! It's nice, but it lets him down easily."
"I wish I didn't have to text him, it's seems insensitive."
"Me and Jen both say to text him-"
"If I could do this in person, it would be perfect."
"You are so weird," Sarah said with a laugh.
"Call Andrew Davis," I commanded my car.
After a few rings, he picked up, "Xaylia, what's up girl?"
"Hey Andrew," I said, "Ok, look I'm about to do something, and I've got to warn you."
"What are you doing?"
"Ian told Jen, to tell me, to tell Andrew Kang that I don't like him," I said.
"Because apparently he's still hung up on me, and I wasn't trying to lead him on or anything, and I don't see why this is necessary, but they're convinced-"
"Hold on, how are you going to tell him this?"
"Jen and Sarah say to text him-"
"Don't text, that's so insensitive."
"My thoughts exactly-"
"Call him, be honest."
"I just thought I'd warn you, being his best friend and all."
"Yeah, thanks," Andrew said, "I just got into Tulsa, so good luck, I'll give you a call tonight or something, ok?"
"Sounds good," I smiled, "Talk to you later."
Twenty minutes later, I was pacing in circles on Sarah's driveway, waiting for an answer, "Maybe he won't pick up," I said optimistically to Sarah.
Shit, "Hey Andrew, it's Xaylia, d-did I wake you up?" his voice sounded groggy. Maybe he was out of town? He worked for an airline, he was one of those guys who it was hard to know where in the world he was...
"Oh my God, I'm sorry," I paced more rapidly, "I'll call you back later or something-"
"No, no it's ok, I needed to wake up," he insisted, "What's up?"
"Um, ok, listen, I just think I owe it to you to tell you this," I took a deep breath, "You are a super nice guy Andrew, but I really only see us as friends. I'm sorry, I know this is horrible of me to say, but I just don't want you to have the wrong idea here, and I'm so sorry if I've ever given you the wrong idea. And I'm still your friend, whether you want me to be or not, you're a fun guy and we have a great time together, but I just felt like I should be honest here. I'm really sorry," I added again, cringing inwardly.
"Um," Kang paused, "Wow, that was... no one's ever been that honest with me before."
"I'm sorry, this is an absolute horrible way to start your day-"
"No, thank you," Kang said, "Like you've got some serious balls to just tell me that. It's great!"
"Yeah, anyone else would have just kept me in the dark, but you just put it all out there," he said, and I swear I detected a note of appreciation in his voice, "This doesn't change anything between us, right?"
"Oh totally not," I said quickly, "I mean, you're free to hate me once you're a bit more conscious, but it's all the same for me."
"Good," Kang said, "Thanks for telling me."
"So where are you that you're just now waking up?" I asked, and then conversation flowed as normal.
I ended the call feeling strangely good about the situation. Maybe it was my inner alpha coming out, or maybe it was just a stroke of good fortune; but I had pulled that off...flawlessly.
Even though I still thought it was as necessary as getting run over by a bus.