It was ten in the morning and I was coming to on the wrong side of my bed. I know this because usually in the morning, the fast thing I feel with my left hand is the cold wall with multiple posters. Today, my hand stretched out to feel nothing but emptiness. However disoriented, my brain still found this an unusual phenomenon and compelled my eyes to open and investigate further. The first thing I saw was my closet. Always ajar and begging for attention, it made me grateful that at least I was in my room. It also confirmed that I was on the other side of normal. Which meant I probably went to sleep (read passed out) not my usual self. Now aware of this trivial fact, I rolled back to the middle of the bed and closed my eyes once more, hard. Like a finger on a trigger, that action set of a very nasty chain of events that ended with a baby being born in my brain. Or at least that’s what it felt like. Everyone knows labour is a real pain, so please don’t ask me how I knew.  It literary felt like someone was having a party in my head with a sledgehammer. So I had to sit up and groan like a sailor, furiously massaging my temples. Then I noticed bodies on my floor. Immobile bodies quiet as death. I almost freaked out before I gathered that no one dies hugging their legs that close to their chest. I tried to figure out who they were but there was almost no room for any useful activity upstairs. So I slumped back to my pillow and purposed to wear this feeling out. But my body was not done rebooting itself, and currently the senses in my mouth were just coming alive. By extension that meant my throat mostly. It felt like that sledgehammer guy had traded tools for a grill and barbecued something extra spicy and smoky in there. I could have killed for a glass of water but I was apparently lazier feet was more convincing than rusty throat. I lay still for a considerable number of minutes in the darkness behind closed eyes and the emptiness that engulfed my brain. Waiting

Then, one by one, and as blurred as a foggy dawn, the memories started trickling in.

I could remember how the place looked like. It was exactly like all other campus parties you can recall. Lots of booze, lots of smoke and screaming music. I remember not wanting to go. I remember the demon of Friday night assaulting my laid back introverted angel. And it did not take much persuasion. I have a few friends and they didn’t need any sort of convincing whatsoever, I could tell. Fast forward to eleven p.m. and the memory gets even blurrier.

I remember dancing (I never dance). I see a female face. Light skinned and awesome red lips. I give her my bottle and so fades the rest of the night. Back to the present and I am busy looking for light skins in the array of bodies on the floor. None. A huge sigh of relief escapes involuntarily. At least I did not make that bad decision.

Feeling a tiny little better, I reach around to the top of my bed and feel for my phone. It’s more out of habit than necessity really.  I find it and it is on. I can tell by the blinking blue light at its top left corner. That’s not my battery low sign.

Oh, shit.

There is of course only one person I could have messaged in my drunken stupor. And it’s the person I really shouldn’t have messaged. I’m even scared to read through the thread. The place between indecision and an ebbing hangover should not be desired by anyone at all. It stretches the recovering cells in your brain like clothes hanged in the storm to dry. I hear someone move and gladly lean over to look.

As he sits up, he looks like he’d been run over by a freight train. And oh, I have never ever seen him before in my short, long life.


4 thoughts on “The Morning After

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