She looked good that night. She looked damn good. I couldn’t take my eyes off of her at dinner as we ate and drank our bottle of wine. It was chilly and I held her hand as we waited for a cab to the art show. They were serving absinthe, which was terrible. The show was amazing; I think half the fun was mocking the art snobs. We walked to the burlesque show where I proceeded to drink more and more. I realized it while I was fucking her in the seedy bathroom in the basement of the Slipper Room.
I was drunk.
I couldn’t concentrate on our sex. I made an excuse and we went back up to the show, she knew.
“No more Maker’s, ok?”
No problem, I just switched to beer instead. Oh and it was hot in there, I think I literally ripped off my undershirt five feet from the fucking stage. I could see myself doing it, but I had no idea what the fuck I was doing. Why in the hell am I drinking?
Memory goes shoddy from here.
Rosario’s Pizza was across the street, we stopped in for slices, I hadn’t had one yet and I was to leave tomorrow. We sat and ate, I have no idea what I was talking about but I had said something that pissed her off.
I looked up and she was gone.
I think I remember watching her walk away and thought she was joking. She called and said she was down the block and that I should come meet her and we would leave. I told her to come get me. She hung up.
At this point I still didn’t realize what the fuck was happening. Then she sent me a text.
“___________ is my address. Take a cab, your shit will be waiting outside.”
Memory gets real fucking clear from here on out.
I sat down hard after she didn’t answer the phone. I clawed at my face and cursed myself, people laughing at me as they passed into the night. I was too shocked to form tears; I had thrown this entire thing away. Friday night was wiped clean. Apparently there was still plenty of growing up to do.
Now she knows. You are just a child.
Guilt, rage, terror, sorrow, fear and anger along with a healthy dose of not knowing how the fuck to get back to her house had me tearing myself up inside. I wanted to punch my hand through the brick and push my cigarette through my arm. What had I done, I already knew that I would never forgive myself for this. I wanted to punch and burn, but…well, I didn’t.
I sobered up. I felt it hit me. Friday night was not lost on me, I remembered what changed in me, and my new heart still beat in my chest. “If this is my punishment,” I thought, “well then so be it, at least I will learn.” I stood there, on the corner of Houston and Orchard with my back against the wall and a cigarette burning my lungs. She was gone and I knew that it was over, it was all my fault. At least I would learn.
Her name lit up on my cell phone. She was coming back.
I thought that it was kind of her to come back for me so I didn’t wander around all night, but I still knew that it was over. She was furious. There was no defense for her attacks, I had nothing to say. I didn’t blame it on my drinking or my past and I didn’t lie. I told her the truth.
“I am a fucking fool, I am so sorry.”
She walked a good five feet in front of me. I tried to catch up, but for every step I took she seemed to take ten. “Don’t fool yourself, you idiot, she is gone.” For once it was only P talking. The other voices in my head were dead silent, I was talking to myself. The sorrow was beginning to hit me as the chilly air sobered my step.
There were tears in her eyes as we got in the elevator; she really did care, didn’t she? I suddenly thought of something Benedict Smith always says. “This is what you are, this is….NO.” “This is not who I am, I am merely hiding the real me behind a haze of alcohol.”
“Open your fucking eyes and look at the woman standing right in front of you, you stupid fool.”
OPEN YOUR EYES.
I couldn’t lose her like that, not like that. I suddenly remembered how she looked at me, what she saw in me. I couldn’t say I was sorry enough, I never meant it like that before. Regret poured out of my mouth, I couldn’t apologize enough.
“You are just a kid, I am thirty years old. What am I doing with you?”
That hurt. That hurt a lot, took my breath away. I had never felt so small and pathetic in my life, she had hit me where it hurt the most, where my greatest fear was hiding. I knew all along that one day she would wake up and realize I was a child and then she would leave me. I sat down hard on the bed as tears welled up in my eyes. I could feel them run down my cheeks as I said it.
“You’re right, I’m sorry I ever did this to you.”
I hurt so badly to see her cry, so I told her that I would sleep on the couch, leave tomorrow and she would never have to hear from me again. She said no. She sat down next to me and I took her in my arms. It felt so right, a sigh of relief escaping from my lungs, but it also felt so wrong. Why was she holding me? Why wasn’t she slapping me? Was she actually forgiving me?
Let’s not be too hasty here, we all no you have no luck whatsoever.
I could feel my head starting to hurt as I tried to explain myself and my behavior to her. It was not going well. She said that she was drunk and that we should just go to bed and deal with it tomorrow. I would have stayed up all night to make it right.
I climbed on top of her slowly and gently pushed my way inside of her. I looked into her tear-filled eyes as I held myself inside of her and kissed her forehead. She started to cry. I could see in her eyes how much she loved me and just how badly I had hurt her. I felt my own tears starting to form and fall onto her breast. I had broken my only two promises.
1. Don’t get drunk.
2. Don’t make her cry.
I rolled off of her and took her into my arms; I could not fuck her. I just kept saying it in my head over and over again, “You have blown it, my friend, it is over.” I held her tightly but we did not speak. She fell asleep in my arms after about thirty minutes while I laid awake in my guilt-ridden agony.
I blew it. Tomorrow I would leave and this would be another painful memory. Tomorrow I would get on with my life and she would do the same. Tomorrow was the end of this beautiful thing we had together.
Tomorrow there would be no redemption.
I had blown it, that Saturday night, on the corner of Houston and Orchard.