The room is bathed in yellow light from the full moon; the third-story window hanging wide open. Sheer curtains billow out around us like a shroud. I try to ignore the messy room. Clothes strewn on the floor and bed. Illegible bottles of lotions or perfumes or lube are scattered on the dresser. I push her against the wall with a thump and a few of those bottles fall to the floor.
I’d forgotten to ask for her name–or maybe I’d just forgotten it–but at this point, it doesn’t really matter. After giving each other shotguns for the last hour I already know what she tastes like, what her lips feel like.
My mouth is too dry so kissing her feels clumsy, though she doesn’t seem to mind. I nip at her lip before I pull away and she smiles a playful little smile.
I feel along her body, my hand sliding up the fabric of her skinny jeans. Past the waist of her pants. My fingers get tangled in her shirt; she’s wearing a clingy tank top beneath an oversized Bob Marley t-shirt.
It was the shirt that had drawn me to her. The iconic Reggae god with a joint between his fingers, smoke billowing from his mouth. The shirt is maybe three sizes too big, but I could still make out the size of her breasts beneath the clothing. She’s the one, I’d thought.
All night we’d shared back-and-forth glances. I’d showed off my beer pong prowess and she’d serenaded me while jamming along on Guitar Hero. The bottles of booze had piled up and, with each hit of green we’d passed along in our circle, I’d felt braver and bolder and luckier. The first shotgun had been more of a joke than an attempt at flirting. I’d put the blunt between my teeth and she’d opened her mouth around mine. We’d exchanged air and I’d felt my heart race and not from the high buzzing through my brain.
Puff, puff, pass, six times or so and it was in my hands again. I took a deep drag, deeper than I thought my lungs could hold, and put my lips to hers. My tongue slippedd into her mouth and she didn’t even take a second to consider it. She opened and I entered and she tasted like smoke and PowerAde and Vodka and it was the most delicious mix I’d ever known. I couldn’t hold my breath any more and the smoke ran from my burning lungs, into her mouth and she breathed me in. She literally breathed me in. It was so erotic. I wished we were alone instead of in a room full of college students jeering and cheering us on as we made out in front of everyone. I wished I had her alone, just the two of us, but we weren’t. There was a room full of kids waiting for me to pass the joint burning in my fingers.
When I pulled away, smoke billowed from her nostrils. It was like a sexy dance the way the smoke moved and I knew I was high, but I couldn’t stop staring at her. Her hair was a silky, deep-dyed crimson–I’ve got a blood fetish–I couldn’t help noticing that her hair looked exactly like that behind my buzzed vision. Her skin was smooth and pale and she had the sexiest smile I’d ever seen. I wanted to put my lips back to hers, but without the blunt in my hand I wasn’t so brave. I took a quick sip of the Smirnoff we’d been passing back and forth–a sort of indirect kiss–and handed it to her. Her fingers were long and delicate, soft when they brushed against my own. Her nails, neatly manicured, long and painted black, my favourite colour. I imagined those nails digging into my back and the way she looked at me, she might’ve been thinking the same thing.
By the time it was my turn again, the joint had burned down to the roach. The circle had grown and someone pulled out another dime. I took a few fresh cigarettes from my box of Newports and handed them off before lighting my own–nicotine keeps the high going. I knocked off the ash on the roach and considered chewing it, but instead, I leaned over and held it out to her. Obediently, she opened her mouth and I placed it on her tongue.
The effects are like taking acid and I knew them as soon as I saw the look on her face.
“I’m fucked up,” she giggled and neither of us took a hit off the fresh joint. “Want to go to my room?” She asked in a lilting voice and it was the most beautiful thing I’d heard in all my life.
Pressing against her, my hands on her voluptuous breasts, twisting her nipples beneath the fabric of her lacy bra, my thoughts come too fast and too slow. I think of all the things I want to do to her and at the same time, I can’t seem to focus on what’s actually going on. I sink my teeth into her skin again, harder than before. Her nails scrape along my neck and it feels better than I thought it would. I find the clasp to her bra and unhook it. They’re round and firm and her skin is softer than anything I’ve ever felt.
“Wait,” I hear her whisper, but I pretend that I don’t. I kiss my way over her skin, my mouth like cotton. I slip a hand into her pants and, again, I hear her whisper more urgently this time, “wait”.
My face is in the valley of her breasts, breathing in her skin. My lips brush over her nipples as I work her pants down. Her thighs are thick as hell. I don’t know how she managed to button them.
I feel her push at me and she’s still telling me to wait and I don’t want to, but I do. Grudgingly, I do. I try to hide the frustration in my voice as I lift my head from her breasts, my hand still between her legs.
This girl, whose name I don’t know, whose face I’ve never seen before this night, whose pants I’ve been trying to penetrate all evening…who I danced with, drank with, smoked with, made out with…made a face that I immediately recognize. She wasn’t angry with my boldness. She wasn’t afraid of my assertiveness. She wasn’t turned off by my aggressiveness. She didn’t mind the fondling. The biting. The dry kissing. No. I recognize this face.
This girl, whose name I don’t know, opens her mouth and, before either of us can speak or react, a surge of sour, vile-smelling fluid rushes up her throat and spews from her mouth in a cascading spray of noxiousness. Acid and alcohol and maybe even a few internal organs blast from her mouth in a deluge that soaks my clothes and face and hair.
Maybe I’m too high, my reflexes too slow, my brain too addled to react, because I don’t move. I can’t move. I stand and take everything she throws at me.
When she finally seems to have emptied the contents of her stomach, she throws a hand over her mouth–a little too late–and sprints out of the room. I stand there, my body frozen with shock and confusion. I hear a distant door slam and I know she’s run to the bathroom because a few moments later I hear her vomiting into the toilet.
Carefully, I pull my shirt over my head, the sopping wet fabric sticking to my skin. I toss it on the floor and sift through the piles of laundry on her bed. I sniff a few shirts before realizing that any smell from her possibly-dirty laundry won’t compare to what is already affixed to my skin and choking my nose. I pick up the discarded Bob Marley T, the one that drew me to her in the first place, and throw it over my head.
It takes half an hour to walk back to campus in which time I polish off tiny bottle after tiny bottle of vodka. I pull another from the pocket of my cargo shorts and slip a cigarette between my lips and light it; the bright orange flame flickering to life. I exhale, watching a ring of smoke form in front of my face. I take another deep drag and exhale again.
The smoke billows above my head, a perfect circle to frame the moon.