Friday, April 19, 2024

Broken Bonds

Waking up on a Sunday morning to the sun peeking through the blinds, I lay curled up tightly under the covers, the chill of a slightly cracked window tickling my toes. How enticing it was, the thought of lying in bed forever after a long weekend of drinking that seemed almost endless.

It was the first weekend of school and like many students during syllabus week, I had spent most of my free time tipping bottles back with friends well into the night. “Wine Wednesday” turned into “Thirsty Thursday” and then by Saturday I couldn’t keep the days straight any longer.

But there I was, lying in bed on Sunday, wondering how it could be that I wasn’t in my own bed, but rather a guy’s bed off campus.

Did my wish finally come true? Did I some how manage to finally get what I’d always wanted- that one chance to be with him?

I would reply yes if the circumstances of the matter had been different. With my head lying gently on his bare chest, I began to trace his tattoo with my finger over and over both listening to the sound of his heartbeat and attempting to patch together memories of how I’d gotten there.

There was that bottle of Mr. Boston pulled from the depths of the freezer, passing from one hand to the next, chanting over and over to chug it. It was followed by a series of pong games to which a winner was never truly declared. Did that joint I saw ever manage to touch my lips or was that his lips that got the taste of bud on my tongue?

The sun went away and the moon danced in its place.

My blood alcohol levels began to rise, and my inner “white girl” crept out.

Why was it suddenly so dark outside? It was sunny like five minutes ago.

Wait how comes he’s with my best friend and not me?

I wish he looked at me like that.

His roommate has such pretty eyes, I think he’s almost cuter than him.

One beer, two beers, three beers, four.

Time passed. It never stopped.

One minute, I was standing on the porch cheering cars on as they passed.

The next minute, I was being pushed against a wall in some place dark, with his hands slowly caressing my inner thigh, teasing me.

I’ll spare the details that followed. Half dressed, I started blowing chunks into his bedside trash can. Anger and panic kicked into his voice, and he left me there to fend for myself, with nothing but a plastic bag in the dark.

Somewhere in my mind I kept thinking, Where is my best friend? The one I came here with? Why isn’t she answering my texts? Did she go back to my dorm, is she safe?”

Light-headed, I began to pick up my clothes gingerly. I found my best friend’s necklace on the floor, the one I’d given her for her birthday last spring. Light reflected off the fake diamonds and I wondered if she was OK.

Stepping into the kitchen, I saw the door down the hall open, and there she was. My best friend crawling out of my summer fling’s bedroom. Sheepishly, she croaked a “good morning” and walked into the bathroom.

People never cease to amaze me. The way you can hold such trust and faith into someone you’ve known your whole life, just to have it thrown out the window over some guy. The only thing I can ever really ever wonder is:

“Was it worth it?”

Email Nicole Casale at

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