I’m sure we’ve all done things we regret- shoplifting, eating cat food, double parking- I’m not exactly a saint, myself. Of course, there are some levels even I’d hoped never to stoop to.
As usual, sambuca had plans that run alternatively to mine. This would be all fine and dandy, but me and sambuca have a bit of a history… So, that’s where things tend to get a bit sketchy.
You see, it was my 18th. Just finished college, about to go into uni- I’m as textbook a teen as you can get. My boyfriend bought me my first drink- orange sambuca. It tasted nothing like oranges and everything like a burnt-out throat and a good time.
I remember grinding on him later, in the club. We were slicked with sweat and he still smelled incredible- my head was full of the things we were going to do later that night- probably eat cake and sleep, but that never stopped my fantasies…
Then came sambucas 1, 2, 3, 4…. Maybe a few more… And my boyfriend’s smell was mysteriously swapped with the general headiness of the club- my arse was possessed, with a mind of its own- it ground towards anything it felt vaguely attractive for the better part of the night, like a possessed poker.
I don’t know when or how I met Tall, Dark, and Handsome. I also don’t know the name of Tall, Dark, and Handsome. So, let’s just call him TDH. TDH smelled clean, and he seemed nice. Those should, perhaps, have been my first warnings. Of course, I was out of my head, so him carrying a literal red warning flag probably wouldn’t have helped all that much. It might have been a nice gesture.
His hands were warm on my hips and it was as if everything else in the club was dull, muted. He flashed every colour of the strobe lights, like a kaleidoscope instead of a person. Green. Blue. Demonic red. Every now and then the lights would go down, and we would cling to each other even harder.
TDH was comforting. I don’t remember the exact circumstances- whether my friends and boyfriend left the club early, or if TDH and I decided to make our own way back. I also don’t remember what the sex was like- I hope it was good, at least, for TDH’s sake.
What I do remember, however, is waking up with a herd of stampeding wildebeest in my head, and a recurring taste of alcohol and kebabs. I remember rolling over and smelling that comforting thing again- only this time it was mixed with something else- something familiar and metallic.
I froze. I couldn’t remember how we met. Who was this guy? what was his name?
And most importantly, why was he dead?