(DISCLAIMER: This is a work of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events, locales, and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. It’s important to remember this is all totally fabricated, embellished, and exaggerated for entertainment purposes.)
When T turned around to say something, our hands broke apart. She averted her eyes with a grin, but spoke anyway.
“You’re gonna love it here…Kevin,” she winked super conspicuously again.
“It’s Mark,” I corrected her.
“No, it’s whatever she says it is,” he pipped up, taking her side.
The instant we got to Brooklyn he told me he had bad memories of this place. Apparently he’d written a entire song about it, but wouldn’t tell me what the tune was called or what it was about. It’d be on the album, he said, and I’d have to wait ’til may to hear it. From the change in his demeanor as we passed certain streets, I figured it must’ve been about me. He stared out of his window in a gloomy daze, leaving me to grapple with the awkwardness that had fallen over the car. Thankfully as we neared the port, he sprung back to life.
“No fooking way, mate! Are we taking a boat ride?!” he grabbed the back of my neck like he wanted to kiss me. I just grinned and stared at his lips.
“Not exactlyh, but close.”
“Still…it’s so fucking sick, Z. I never expected you to bring me here!”
“Told you you’d love it!” T said, grinning back at him.
“Well then, I guess you were right, love,” he said softly, gazing into her eyes. I think he was flirting. Wow. I hadn’t seen the ‘magic’ of Harry Styles from this perspective in a long time. Suddenly I remembered G’s words from the other day about how he was rumored to sleep around LA so much. I shoved the notion out of my head as quickly as they entered, remembering how jealous she had been when she found out about he and I. Her word was simply not credible. Still, I forgot how he couldn’t help but flirt with anything that moved, even if he never intended to carry through with any of it. He just liked to be liked and milked it in any way he could. Also, why the fuck did he never call me ‘love’?
I cleared my throat, “This is, like, one of my sickest hideaways.”
“You seem to have a lot of those,” he muttered.
“It’s super chill most days. Nice place to grab a drink. A bite to eat. People don’t bother me around here, thank God. The owner’s nice.”
“Her name’s Caroline. She’s like a ship conservationist—”
“Preservationist,” T piped up.
“Yeah, that’s what I meant.” We laughed.
The driver pulled in beside a massive historic tanker ship docked off the coast of Red Hook. Now we hopped out and told the driver to circle back in a few hours. Once we headed onto the deserted deck, Haz kicked my kneecaps out from behind, making my legs buckle. Caroline greeted us at the door to the gallery. Fuck she was a breath of fresh air, always happy to see me. She gifted us a huge smile and a ‘Heyyyyy there‘.
“There you are! Thought you’d changed your mind!” She was totally badass. A tall, blonde, middle-aged chick with a husky voice and as many tattoos as me. I’d met her a time or two hanging around the place with friends, and we got to know each other pretty well. Her dad got her into ships. She was slowly getting me into them too.
“Sorry ’bout that, C,” I chuckled. “We was runnin’ a bit late. Had trouble findin’ a ride.”
“Well, you’re here now. It’s all good!” she declared, clapping me on the back with an ‘attaboy’ sort of gusto. “Welcome, everyone, both new friends and old—”
“Thank you!” Haz said cheerily.
“—to the Mary Whalen! Come on in, come in! I won’t keep you waiting. It’s getting cold out there, isn’t it? Still waiting on summer.”
“We’ve got a long way to go!” Haz grinned.
We followed her inside and down a tight hall to the indoor bar area. It was much warmer here and the room was surrounded with blue lights and plenty of windows that presented views of the port and the surrounding water. The sun was beginning to set so a chill glow spread across the bar, lending it a cozy feel.
Caroline popped on some classic rock, Kansas’ “Dust In the Wind” to be exact. I didn’t bother to suggest different music because I knew her taste was more aligned with Haz’s and this was all about him. We took our jackets off and chose a table on the far end of the room out of ear shot of the bar. I grabbed us all a glass of Peroni and some snacks and we got to drinking. T excused herself shortly after to use the rest room.
“Mate, this is legendary. I love it here so much” he said, gazing around, grinning at the hodgepodge decorations and eclectic furnishings. “It’s so sick.”
“Tell me about it.” I propped my head on my fist and met his eyes. “I fell in love the first time I came here with Jawaad. He was in town and we just Googled a few bars outside the uppity part of town and found this.”
“Haven’t seen anything like this in LA.” He made a corny joke about how it gave the term “dive bar” a whole new meaning. He elbowed me and asked if I saw what he did there.
“Yes, babe, I get it. Dive as in ‘dive bar’ but also dive as in swimming because we’re on the water. Genius, mate. Couldn’t have said it better meself.” At that, he cracked up at his own joke. I loved him the most when he was being utterly embarrassing.
I tossed a few pretzels up and tried to shoot them into his open mouth, but they kept landing on his nose and eyes and making him lose his shit. His laughter was infectious and soon I was snickering uncontrollably. Finally he ate one directly out of my hand before gurgling some of his beer.
The beautiful peculiarity of the now blew my mind. Everything about this moment was divine. Imperfect and surreal, like a barely remembered dream. Suddenly I thought I’d like nothing more than to run away from it all to some remote island and build a pub just like this one in the middle of nowhere. Right on the water. No one to keep me company but this marvelous creature sitting next to me and a few dogs. Maybe a cat or two. Plenty of fish in oversized aquariums that he and I would make silly faces into whenever we were drunk.
Just a sick little getaway like the Bradford Arms, which my grandparents used to own back home, and which I replicated as best I could in an old shed in the garden of my London place. That was hands down one of the dopest spots on earth. All my eccentricities collected into one place. My own little private tavern that no one could access without my consent. Filled with generational memories of my family and all the weirdest, coolest, most mind-bending shit I could find in my travels, like a blue lava lamp and an old anatomy dummy and an antique Arabic sword. I could see it now. He and I vanishing off the face of the planet and moving someplace no one knew our names or history. Just serving the locals for as long as we saw fit.
When Taryn got back to the table, “Hotel California” was playing and she was visibly upset. She plopped down and slammed her phone onto the table, burying her face into her hands.
“T, wussup?” I asked.
“Nothing…it’s nothing.” She looked like she’d just gotten her period.
“Yo…youh gud, bruv?”
“Yeah…it’s just Ellie.”
“Who’s Ellie?” Haz asked.
“My bae.” At that, he snorted.
“Your bae?” he teased. She threw a handful of pretzels at him.
“Wus wrong? What happened?” I insisted.
“She’s mad at me. What else is new?”
“I’m going home to see my parents in a few days, remember? And so she’s upset she can’t come. God, it’s like…we’ve been over this so many freaking times, y’know?”
“Why can’t she come?” he wondered.
“Because I won’t let her. But not because I don’t want her there.”
“Then what’s the problem? If you want her there, why’s she mad at you?”
“Hey, uh…her parents don’t know yet…” I replied. “About them. They don’t necessarily know that T is…well…”
“Gay!” she shouted, before taking a big swig of beer and leaving a foam mustache behind.
“No way…how’s that?”
“I just never told them.”
“Why?” he persisted. Damn, was he drunk? He had no idea how pushy he was being. I kicked him beneath the table.
“I don’t know…” she shrugged. “I just…it feels really weird, y’know? They’re, like, super strict Christians. Church every Sunday, conservative dressing, bible-thumping Christians. The difficult kind. Somehow, the idea of looking my dad in the face and telling him I like girls is…”
“Petrifying…” I completed the thought for her, envisioning my own dad.
“You think you’d ever tell ’em?” he mumbled, finishing the last of his beer before starting in on mine. I got up and got us all a second round. By the time I got back to the table, they were leaning across and staring into each other’s eyes. Giggling like schoolgirls. A weird sexual tension surrounded the table. I wanted to drop the tray I was carrying and cause a scene. Watch beer and glass spay everywhere. Bet they’d remember I existed then.
“Soh, uh, what youh gonna do?” I asked, settling back into my chair and handing out the drinks. “Stairway To Heaven” was casting a spell across the room.
“I’m gonna go. I have to. And I’ll just deal with El when I get back. Same old shit. Hopefully I’ll be gone long enough for her to miss me.”
“Ah, classic emotional manipulation, gotta love it,” Haz grinned.
“Shut up!” she laughed.
“No, you shut up!”
“Youh both shut up!” I snapped. “T, this isn’t good. Maybe you should talk to her? Tell her how you feel. Tell her why you’re afraid.”
“Pff. As if you talk through anything with anybody,” Haz remarked, rolling his eyes. I could tell that was a personal jab, but there was no way I could respond to it in front of her.
“You think she’d understand?”
“She has to,” I said. “If she loves you, she’ll understand.”
“Wait…hang on, mate. Let’s be honest here, alright?” Haz spat. “Why does El conceding and giving in have to be some sort of measurement of her love? How is that fair, mate? What if she’s just tired of giving in? You ever think of that? What if she’s tired of being the first to always break? Tired of being left alone all the time and counted out? Maybe she doesn’t want to feel like a burden anymore? Ever think of that?” He was straight up scowling at me now. I sat there in shock. “And it’s not fair to say that if she doesn’t understand T’s need to hide her, that she doesn’t love her. It’s not cool to even insinuate that shit, mate. I mean it. Fuck you for that.” He looked down afterwards, pissed with me and embarrassed that he had lost his composure.
T stared at him wide-eyed, fully aware that it had hit home, but unable to let on that she knew about us. I just sat there dumbfounded. My hands were tied. I couldn’t console him in front of her and expose to him that I’d told her about us, but I also couldn’t deny that he was right. I’d misspoken. I needed to be more sensitive with this subject while he was around.
“I know she loves you,” I said to T, hoping he’d catch on. “Very much, no matter if she’s tired of hiding anymore or not. I guess it’s really fuckin’ complicated, maan. M’not really the best at givin advice, anyweh. Maybe I should sit this one out.”
“It’s ok! It’s ok! Don’t worry guys. I didn’t mean to bring down the mood. Let’s get back to happier subjects ok? You two miss the band days?”
I looked over at him and although he was still sulking, playing with a few broken pretzels on the tabletop, he couldn’t resist responding to her.
“Sort of. Sometimes, I think. But most of the time, I’m just excited about what’s next, y’know?”
“Of course! Who wouldn’t be?! Dude, with a record like that last one it’s clear you’ve been putting in the work.”
“Pizza’s here!” Caroline called, moving to answer the door.
“Oh yeah, I forgot to mention I ordered pizza since the kitchen’s closed,” T, said. Fuck I could kiss her right now. I was starving. I’d made the Spaghetti Bolognese but we hadn’t touched it before we got in bed. I couldn’t wait to get home and smash it. Even cold and congealed if I had to.
“Zaaaa!” Haz yelled, shaking his fists in the air like an ecstatic 14-year-old.
“Chicken and sweet corn,” I heard you guys liked it that way.
“Thank fuck!” I said, kissing her hair as I moved to grab the box.
“Gimme some of that!” Caroline muttered, snagging a piece onto a napkin straight out of the box. She was hysterical sometimes and I couldn’t stop laughing.
A few slices and another round of beers down, G called. I hadn’t spoken to her since earlier yesterday and I knew she’d be pissed if I didn’t answer. She called the most when I wasn’t staying at hers for a few days. I got up to answer in private, and Haz’s body language changed. He threw down his slice and wiped his hands with a deep, agitated sigh.
Still, I moved to the corner of the room to answer and resolved to make the call short. By the time I got back, he was seated over at the bar, chatting with Caroline and drinking something different. T was texting vigorously on her phone. I sad down and rubbed my hands down my face, feeling stupid and alone.
“This is fucked, maan,” I uttered. “Can’t keep doin’ this. Can’t take it.” I was mostly talking to myself, but she chimed in anyway.
“Jugglin’ everythin’. It’s gettin’ to be too much. Fuck, it’s always been too much. It’s completely fucked my mental. I can hardly tell who I am anymore, T. Not after all that shit last month. The photos—”
“I know, sweetie, I know. But you’re good now. Things are good, remember? Better than we could’ve imagined after that. I was so scared for you,” she rubbed my arm and looked me deep in my eyes. Hers were so gorgeous when she was tipsy.
“But now look at you! You’re smiling again. You’re laughing that adorable laugh.” Then she lowered her voice. “And you’re with your man too, out in the open! What the fuck, Z, that’s insane! You gotta count your blessings, I’m telling you, babe.”
“Yeah…” I turned to look at him across the room, feeling a warmth spread in my belly. “Maybe you’re right…”
I turned to her and whispered, “It’s just that he gets soh jealous, yeah? It’s weird, maan. He scares me sumtimes. Like…it feels like I don’t know what he’ll do sumtimes.”
“Yeah, maan. He’s such a fuckin’ unit too. I think he’s gonna choke me out, he gets soh pissed—”
“He’d never do that! C’mon now, I’ve known him for like five seconds and I know he’d never do anything to deliberately hurt you.”
“Yeah…maybe. I just don’t know how to keep him happy anymore. Some days are easy. But latelyh it’s soh hard to be together. We always have to separate or pretend in front of others or change our names. Leave buildin’s one by one and shit. It used to be soh fuckin’ easy in the band. We got to spend all day together, then at night we’d just link up, find each other in the hall and goh back to his place or mine’s. Even on tour breaks we’d spend time together easily. Noh one ever thought anythin’ of it. Now there’s soh much fuckin’ hidin’ it’s makes youh question if it’s even worth it.”
“Well, if my opinion is worth anything, I’d say it’s definitely worth it. Dude, you’re fucking crazy about each other. I saw it the second you walked up on the street, practically arm-in-arm. And the way he looks at you sometimes…especially when you’re not paying attention and don’t realize he’s doing it. It’s so fucking sweet, Z. Argh!” At that I smiled. She was right. I was a lunatic for questioning our worth. Of course it was worth it, and I was aware of that deep down. That’s why we did all the fucked up shit did to keep it going even when it seemed like every forced on earth had conspired to separate us.
I excused myself from T and ventured to an unoccupied hall of the ship where I knew there were guitars. I grabbed one and started tuning it. Then I strummed one of the few tunes I knew, approaching C and Haz at the bar.
“There he is!” Caroline hooted. “This guy knows how to have a good time.” She clinked her glass against Haz’s and gulped down the last of her drink. I kept strumming, no matter how many times I messed up.
“Careful, or you’ll hurt yourself with that thing,” he quipped, unwilling to look at me.
“Oh soh you’re the expert now?”
“Those lessons with Niall really paid off then.”
“Niall didn’t teach me shit. I’m self-taught. Auto-didact, bitch.” Fuck he was a funny drunk. Caroline turned down Kansas’ “Play The Game Tonight” and urged me to show her what I got. Now I was nervous. I was still novice, but totally in love with the guitar and would take decades to learn if I must. I had like six of them back home waiting on me, and had even left a couple back in Bel Air.
“This is a lil’ sumthin’ I wrote,” I licked my lips, started, then stopped when I messed up again. My face was beat red, the heat traveling up my throat. Haz didn’t comment, but he listened intently. I played a few chords and crooned about how I saw someone every night when I closed my eyes. How they were always on my mind. I wouldn’t stop looking at him as I played, but he didn’t have the nerve to look up at me, so he just stared at my hands.
“That voice!” C, gasped when I finished, pretending to have a heartache. “I wish I could bottle that, man. You’re unbelievably gifted.”
“He is…” Haz agreed. Now I just felt embarrassed for putting myself on the spot.
“He’s gettin’ better!” T slurred, sashaying over with beer in hand and another foam mustache. “I told him to keep it up. Consi—”
“—tency is key,” Haz finished her sentence. She pulled him off the bar stool.
“Come on you two. I gotta game I wanna play.” We followed.
“Gimme that thing…” Haz said, taking the guitar from me and tuning it properly. I held onto his glass and smelled it. I was pretty sure it was tequila. I took a sip. Yup, tequila.
“You’re gonna start pissing tequila one day,” I remarked as he planted a foot onto the seat of the chair and played a gorgeous tune I’d never heard of before. “Woah, I really like that…” I said. “What’s it called?” He simply shook his head, a big, cheeky grin on his face as he played. He seemed to warm up to me again, but I had no idea why.
“Alright, listen up, guys!” T clapped her hands like she was rounding up a bunch of five-year-olds. “The game is this: we each take these darts and chuck them at that dart board over there, and whoever doesn’t land in the inner circle has to tell a really dirty secret.”
“Ah Fuck…” I said.
“I’m down!” Haz announced, setting the guitar atop the neighboring table. “Why don’t we spice it up a bit and make it difficult to throw? Let’s throw from like the middle of the room, and only after taking a shot…and then whoever has to tell the secret, also has to take a shot.” He was just making up reasons to drink more tequila at this point.
“I love that! Yes, yes!” she said, jumping up and down. They gave each other double high-fives. I rolled my eyes and grabbed the bottle he’d been drinking from the bar. Caroline also gave me three shot glasses.
“Alright, let’s do it,” I uttered, lining the glasses and pouring our first shots. Then I took my hoodie off to help me aim. When Haz saw me, he did the same; making a funny face and licked his thumb, using it to comically smooth each of his eyebrows. That meant war. I toasted the air, but before I could drink, T stopped me.
“Wait wait wait! Let’s make it a real toast.” They both grabbed their glasses. “To what though?”
“Uh, to spilling dirt!” Haz shouted.
“How about let’s toast to not a single word of this situation leaving this room. Like ever…”
“I’ll drink to that,” he said, and we all took our first shot. He and I hissed and she gave a little wide-eyed woof.
“Who’s up first?” I asked.
“No, we all throw at the same time. It makes it that much more difficult!”
“Sick, I guess.”
“Readyyy?” she laughed. “One, two, three, go!” We all threw and Haz shoved me to throw my aim off. My dart didn’t even touch the board. They laughed with an obnoxious effusiveness and called me a loser.
“You’re a fuckin’ cheater broh,” I got up in his face and he playfully sneered down at me.
“Don’t blame me. You’ve got a shit arm, mate. Now drink your shot!” he slapped my ass, shoving me towards the table where T had damn near overfilled my glass. I gulped it down, spilling some down my chin. Haz let out a triumphant yell, then helped me clean my face with the hem of his shirt.
“Fanks, broh,” I croaked, throat still burning from the shot. Now my vision was getting a bit loopy. Big sections of the room were blurring over. All I saw were his and T’s smiling faces. Big laughing mouths. Zeppelin was playing loudly in the background now. I started humming the tune to “Ramble On” although I knew none of the lyrics and had probably never heard it before.
“Z, the secret,” Haz said through the haze. “C’mon mate. You’re not getting out of this one!”
“I think I might’ve accidently cheated with my masseuse.”
“When?!” T squealed.
“No, mate. You already told me that one last year. Go again. Make it good.”
“Okay…uhhhh…” I wracked my brain for something fucked up. “Hey, uh…soh…this is bad.” I squinched my eyes closed. “I might’ve, like, done coke a few times last year…noh, it was actually the year before. 2015, innit? It was after I left the band. I got linked up with these dodgy producer dudes in LA, and they spent more time partyin’ than helpin’ me with the music. We went to Vegas on a whim one night, and just had a crazy fuckin’ bender. Booze, hookers, and mountains of cocaine. I almost died that weekend. I’m clean now though. Haven’t touched the stuff in years. No biggie.”
“Holy shit, Z!” Haz grabbed my face, staring at me with a mixture of shock and bemusement. “That’s so…badass! You were like a rockstar for like a few days.”
“Fuck yeah, maan. The worst I’ve ever felt though.”
“Damn!” T said. “Didn’t expect to get anything that good on the first try. I’m just trying to get you two good and drunk and spilling so I can compile a book in a few years. Looks like I’ve already hit the jackpot!” At that we laughed, and a small part of me thought she might’ve been serious. Either way, I was far too drunk to care.
We all lined up again and Taryn missed. She took a shot and hopped around with a squinched face like she had sucked on a lemon. Then she told us she didn’t really enjoy going down on her girlfriends, but that she did it anyway to make them happy. She said she was kind of a hypocrite because she could receive but never wanted to reciprocate. Haz fell over onto the floor laughing; ACDC’s “Hell’s Bells” nearly drowning him out.
On the next round, something told me Haz had missed on purpose. I think he was tired of being the odd man out. He took his shot and it didn’t seem to faze him one bit. Then he told me he’d tried coke too in 2015 after I left. That he’d done a lot of weird shit to fill that void. My heart sank, but I couldn’t grab him and kiss him the way I wanted. I couldn’t wait to get home and tell him how sorry I was for putting him through that.
Taryn missed again and she said she stole her mom’s debit card when she was like sixteen and brought loads of weed, but never smoked it. She sold it to her friends instead. Haz missed a couple of times in a row and told about the time he slept with an old Russian woman who almost got him addicted to Percocet, forgetting he had already spilled that one last year. And although he wouldn’t allow me tell an old story earlier, I allowed him to because I didn’t want to give him any grief after my phone call with G. His second secret was a bit of a blur in my mind. He was so drunk I knew he’d miss every throw going forward, and was already pretty shit-faced.
I missed along with Taryn next, but she tapped out. I told them about the time I walked in on my parents having sex, and that it still gave me nightmares to think of the sounds they were making. They gave me a group hug for the trauma I must’ve been battling, but still made me drink. The next time around both Haz and I missed. I told him I’d take his shot because he was already too drunk. The first one went down uneventfully, but the second one choked the living shit out of me. I coughed a long time and my eyes watered over. He rubbed my back and shoulders until I was ok again, wiping the tears from my eyes with his thumbs. We were entirely heedless of how intimately we were behaving. It was just second nature and hard to shake, particularly when we’d been drinking.
Whatever eyesight I had left was completely impaired. My thoughts were compromised. My head spun. I braced hands on the table before blurting that I’d kissed a guy once. Haz’s head snapped in my direction, mouth dropping open. I don’t think he knew whether to laugh or panic. Taryn slapped him on the arm.
“Your turn, Kevin. You’re not getting out of a secret, buddy. C’mon!” Suddenly the truth was like a gnawing black void, beckoning us to open up and speak of it. I knew he could feel it too. I could see him fighting it.
“I…” he looked over at me for help, then tossed his hands up. “Me too. Fucks sake, mate…I kissed a guy too.”
“Okayyy!” she laughed nervously. “Woohoo! So was it, like, the same guy?!” He and I looked at each other and cracked up.
“Why on earth would it be?!” he asked. “Wait…shit, it probably was.“
“Okayyy then! I think we’ve all had enough of this game. I don’t wanna get you two into anymore trouble. Plus, I want more pizza!” She plopped back down into her chair and took up a cold slice. I stumbled around a bit, running my hands through my hair, straightening my shirt. I had no clue what to do with myself. I hadn’t been this drunk in a long time.
Haz grabbed me over to him in a sort of half hug, just as listless as I was. I fell into him, burying my face into his chest out of habit. He was so big and warm. Reeking of my bodywash; my laundry detergent. Mine, mine, mine. All of him. I wrapped my arms around his waist and he dug his fingers into my hair, softly massaging my scalp.
“Mmmm…babe…” I groaned, snuggling deeper into him, oblivious to the fact that we stood in the middle of the floor in plain view of everyone. T cleared her throat to snap us out of it. Still, I took my time letting go.
Later we had an impromptu dance party where T showed us how to properly twerk. Caroline laughed from the sidelines when I gave it a go. She then said I was too skinny. I took great offense to that. After we cooled down a bit, she took us all on a tour of the deeper recesses of the ship, the parts that remained off limits to normal customers for safety concerns.
After we dropped T off at home, Haz and I walked back to my place and soaked up the night. Breaking into song occasionally. Tripping each other. When he hit the ground, laughing hysterically, I felt awful so we stopped that particular game. He’d scrapped up his hands pretty bad. I patched them up when we got inside, cleaning them and putting Band-Aids across his reddened palms.
It was still too early to go to bed, so we ended up on the balcony smoking the fattest blunt I’d ever rolled and playing with the telescope. He tried to see into a neighbor’s bedroom but the lights were out. Suddenly he asked,
“Did you ever have the talk with her?”
“You know who I mean.”
“Why not?” he squinted, temper rising. “You promised you would after New Year’s. Z, mate, it’s been months, right? What’d you lose track of time? Need me to get you a calendar—”
“Why youh being a dick all of a sudden?”
“Because I know you want me to leave tomorrow, and you’re gonna go right back home to her. And I get to be all alone.”
“You’re not alone. What ever happened to Tess?”
“Fuck you. You know what I mean.”
“Look, babe…” I came to stand in front of him, pulling on the pockets of his hoodie. He gazed down his nose at me, looking stone cold sober. “It’s gonna happen, alright? I know you’re tired of everythin’…I am too, but the timing’s never been right really—”
“And it never will be, dummy. You just have to fucking do it, Z. Just take it in stride. Deal with the consequences like a man.” That cut deep. I swallowed thickly, trying not to feel offended. I hated having my manhood questioned, particularly when I knew that person was right. I was sincerely running from the hard parts. At least that’s before the extortion.
“Look babe…” I played with the strings of his hoodie, moving in a little closer. “You know the thing I told you about…the thing I couldn’t really explain earlier?”
“Well…it’s put me in a really really fucked up place with G. M’sorry I can’t explain it yet, but I can’t risk anythin’ poppin’ off right now. I hope youh understand? I can’t really say more, Haz.”
“Yeah, alright,” was his exhausted reply, as he moved into the flat. I grabbed his arm to stop him.
“Babe? We gud?”
“Yeah, whatever. I’m tired. And hungry.”
“Want me to heat youh up some dinner?”
“Whatever you want.” Fuck, he was pissed. I put the jay out and followed him inside, locking up the house. While he showered, I heated up the pasta. When he came out, he sat alone and ate at the kitchen island while I showered. When I came out, he was already in bed, flipping through the channels. I was good and drunk still, but he wasn’t. He held his liquor well. Worryingly well. His tolerance threshold was becoming exceedingly high and it led him to drink more and more these days. That was no good.
“Hey,” I uttered, pulling on a t-shirt and briefs. He’d opted to go shirtless, sitting at the head of the bed in nothing but his underwear. Glorious pecs on display. I stood in front of the TV, but he craned to look around me.
“Hey,” he replied, landing on a sitcom and pretending to be invested.
“Youh wanna watch Goodfellas?”
I really didn’t want to go to bed angry, but I also didn’t want to provoke him further. I just climbed in bed at his side and sat quietly. I didn’t even bother checking my phone. He checked his and was deliberately ignoring me. When I turned out the light on the nightstand, he abruptly shut the TV off, leaving the room pitch black. He grabbed me over onto him which a growl, and I was genuinely afraid of what he would do next. I couldn’t see him even a glimpse of him through the shadows. He slid my briefs off in the dark, caressing and squeezing my bare ass. Kissing me madly. Drinking my spit; my breath. Before I knew it, he was back inside and I was levitating.
(Thanks for reading!❤️)