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Love. One word, one syllable, four letters. It has so many different meanings to so many different people. The dictionary defines it as ‘a profoundly tender, passionate affection for another person’, my mother says it a myth and most girls my age see it as the one thing in the world worth wanting. As for me, I don’t know what to think of love. All I know is that, eventually, it is going to kill me.
I pushed my way through the thronging crowd, music pulsing in my ears and two drinks held above my head so they wouldn’t spill. There was a steady buzz of voices as conversations unfolded all around me. It wasn’t the nicest club in town, actually it was pretty dingy, but music was decent and drinks were cheap ensuring it was always packed with people looking for a good time or who wanted to get absolutely trashed but didn’t want to spend that much money.
‘Excuse me.’ I squeezed past a couple who clearly didn’t know the meaning of the word decency and slid into the booth which Dylan was fiercely guarding.
‘God this place is getting popular. I don’t know why, it’s a complete cesspit. I mean we come here because they don’t id us but why would any self respecting adult even bother.’ She smirked. ‘I can’t complain though. All the more hotties for us, eh?’ I smiled weakly and sipped my vodka and cranberry while she scanned the room. She was always better than me at noticing guys who were interested. Or maybe I just didn’t care enough to look. I was never quite sure which it was.
‘Don’t look now but there are two guys two tables behind you who are being ashamedly obvious.’ After about ten minutes of having making, breaking and then making eye contact Dylan fluttered her fingers and gave a smile which was a mix sweetness, lust and menace. I sighed inwardly. Her routine was the same as always but it was still effective. Not just on the guys either.
Several minutes later and I was squashed against a wall with a sweaty arm slung round my shoulders. I longed to pull it off. Still it could be worse. I shivered as a dangerous memory tried to resurface. I felt the burn of bile in my throat.
‘I just need to…uh…go to the bathroom. I’ll be right back.’ The guy whose name I hadn’t heard moved to the edge of the seat and the stopped, grinning expectantly. My already unsettled stomach gave a jolt. I was so sick of drunken guys. I gave him a quick peck on the cheek and half climbed over, half pushed past him and tried not to run to the bathroom.
I began to retch as I stumbled into a cubicle and doubled over. I had tried so hard to forget but the memories just wouldn’t go away.
His lips were rough and forceful. His tongue darted around my mouth longingly. I almost stopped him when I felt his hand creep up under my skirt and begin to pull down my tights. I couldn’t though. I was normal. This was what I wanted. I kissed his neck and ran my nails down his back. Trying to act like I was used to this. Then I felt it, him.
My stomach gave one final lurch and emptied its contents. Lunch had been a bad idea. I seemed to have a lot of them these days. I straightened up, wiping my mouth with toilet paper. It wasn’t until I had washed out my mouth and fixed my lipstick that I noticed the tearstains on my face. I had no idea when I had starting crying never mind when I had stopped. I quickly washed my face and left the bathrooms. I made my way across the crowded dance floor, pushing and shoving half-heartedly. I had reached the edge of the dance floor and was preparing myself mentally for the imminent advances ofmy expectant companion when the crowd in front of my shifted slightly and our table came into view.
Dylan was sitting on her admirer’s lap locking lips. It was nothing I hadn’t seen before but I felt as if something was trying claw its way out of my chest. I knew the feeling well, too well. I watched as his hand slowly slid up her thigh. I spun on my heel and disappeared into the crowd once more.
The rest of the night was made up of draining unattended glasses and escaping leering faces with invasive hands followed by indistinct blurs and the constant hum of voices melding with the thumping of the music. On and on and on. Then somehow I was outside.
The icy fingers of the night grazed my arms as I slipped and stumbled over the frosty ground. Then there was an acidic burn in my throat and all the alcohol was being rejected and suddenly I was closer to the ground with a dull ache in my knees. I gasped and gulped for air and winced at its sting. Out of no where there were hands rubbing my back and running through my knotted sweaty hair and then I was being pulled up up up into a familiar embrace with her familiar voice chattering in my ear about how worried she’d been and why had I wandered off like that? As I breathed in the familiar scent of her perfume and tried to figure out if I wanted to laugh or cry.
Love will eventually kill me. Sometimes I wish it would be sooner than later.