Only An Hour Ago

February 2, 2011
So here I am, wherever that is, I’m not really sure. I drove for about an hour straight just trying to find someplace completely in seclusion. My car is in park, but the engine is still running. It’s so cold out; I want to be as comfortable as I can be for the time being. Outside is so beautiful right now. The snow is falling hard, the only thing in view are what the headlights give me, some trees in front of me and snowflakes. Right now, I’m watching them fall onto to the windshield and melt away quickly, because the heat is going full blast. I don’t usually appreciate the beauty of nature, but the alcohol has really opened me up.

I have a bottle of cheap vodka in one hand and a .38 caliber pistol in the other. I swiped the gun from Nigel’s dad’s gun cabinet, no one noticed, everybody was and probably are still drunk. The vodka was just the first thing I picked up, considering there was so much other alcohol around. I take swig from the bottle and shiver a little from the burning sensation. Just to think, an hour ago I was a completely happy person: I’m the school’s star quarterback, my parents have an abundance of money, I drive the latest Mustang, and I had the most beautiful girlfriend. What more could a teenager ask for?

“What time is it,” I ask to myself, out loud, like somebody else is here. Pulling out my cell phone is no easy task, my jeans are really tight. I have to pinch the bottom of my cell phone, in my pocket, to move it up little by little until I can pull it out all the way. The time is 12:17 a.m. An hour and eleven minutes after Courtney broke up with me. Why couldn’t she have waited until after the party? I’m looking at the background of my phone. The background is a picture of Courtney and me kissing in her bedroom. I remember having to take like 20 pictures before we finally got one with both of us in one. I also recall myself leaning into her too far and we both fell off her bed, we laughed for like an hour. Damn, I should’ve brought more than one bullet, so I could shoot my phone so I couldn’t look at the picture anymore, but I guess breaking it half will have to do. With great aggression, I do so, roll down my window, and toss it. I’m crying like a little girl that fell off her bike. Maybe it’s the alcohol, but I doubt it. I love Courtney, we dated for eleven months. Eleven months, that’s like 20 years of marriage, in high school years of course.

Another gulp of the silly water and the bottle is empty. I hold the bottle like I hold a football; I’m aiming for a tree that’s right outside my window. I torpedo the bottle and it hits the tree right in the middle making a raucous shattering sound. Pretty good for not having played football in a few months and if you consider the limited space I have in my car. I roll up the window; the wind is biting something awful. I hold the gun up under the light of the rearview mirror so I can look at it. Why do adults always want to buy a .38 for home protection? Looking it over from all sides, I wonder how something so small can do so much. It’s just a big hunk of metal and a little spring. Something so small can take away anything you’ve had or ever will have, isn’t that weird? I set the gun down on the passenger side, and decide to turn on the radio. It would be better to go out to a song than in complete incoherence.

I tune the radio to 102.8, the station that plays older music, I just can’t listen to the crap my friend’s listen to. The song that is playing is “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper” by Blue Oyster Cult. How appropriate. I pick the gun up again and can’t decide whether to put the gun under my chin, to my head, or in my mouth. In my mouth would be cleaner so my parent’s can at least have an open casket funeral.

I’m mouthing the words to the song, it sounds so terrible with my crying and trembling voice. I come to the part of the song that goes:

“Valentine is done
Here but now they're gone
Romeo and Juliet
Are together in eternity...
Romeo and Juliet…”

I’m crying again. I shove the barrel in my mouth, which gags me a little bit. The barrel is a lot colder than I thought it would be, but maybe it’s just my imagination. My teeth grind on the metal a little, giving me a shiver. With tears in running a marathon down both sides of my face, I cock back the hammer, and the little click seems to echo in the entire four foot radius of my car. I want the last thing that I think about be something happy. I think about when I first met Courtney. We met at a party, ironically enough. She was sitting with her friend’s, talking, and showing no assiduity to the carousing going all around her. I even remember what she was wearing: one of those pink headband things that volleyball girl’s wear sometimes, a baby blue winter coat with fur along the hood of it, tight blue jeans, and those really girlie Mukluk winter boots. I remember thinking I had never seen a real angel until that night. She looked like what I thought an angel would look like: long honey blonde hair, soft powdy lips, and a face that would bury anything Michelangelo had ever done. I walked over to her when her friend’s left her to hang with some other guys. Normally I don’t get nervous when I talk to girls, but I did that night. My voice was shaking and my hands were in my pockets the whole time. She must not have noticed because she was very into me as soon as we started talking. We stayed there talking and laughing even after most of the people had left; I even ended up driving her home! When we got to her house, she handed me her number and gave me the softest, but most pleasurable kiss I had ever had.

“That’s enough,” I think to myself. With a shaky hand and a deep breath, I’m gone.

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