Drunk in love
We are checked into a fancy hotel by the time evening falls. She doesn’t feel like going to the one where her mother’s staying, even though it’s just a few minutes away. She needs to be near me tonight, she said. She needs to feel me close to her, just in case she’ll wake up in the middle of the night, thinking it was all a dream.
I should know better, but I let her. The entire ride back, on the Vespa, we didn’t say a word. She just held on tightly to my upper body, with her head on my shoulder. We didn’t even wear our helmets. By the time it got a little chilly and we got bored of staring into the distance, we ended up here.
“Here’s the key, Miss. Your room is at the second floor, on the right. Number 203. Elevator is down the hall.”
The gentle man softly smiles at me. He must be fifty years old. I friendly accept the keycard and thank the person in front of me. He’s staring at me and I wonder why.
“Is there a bar?” I tiredly ask, faking a confident half smile.
Any moment now, he’ll ask me how old I am, but I decided to give it a try anyway. Seconds pass, while he examines the both of us. If I didn’t know any better, I’d say he recognizes us both. We were quite the biggest news ever around town when we got rescued. Some of the locals can’t seem to shake our faces out of their memory. The old guy ultimately ignores the age matter and points out a trendy section in the back of the lobby, like he’s feeling compassionate about our situation. There’s piano music reverberating through the majestic, open door. When I look into his eyes, I immediately get it: he pities us – we deserve a drink.
“This is a fancy place, Mariana.” Lauren whispers as we’re making our way over to the bar.
I shrug: “So?”
She pulls my sleeve and rolls her eyes: “So, it’s a bit expensive, no?”
I can’t help but laugh over her cute comment. Of course it is. But that doesn’t matter. I like to feel pampered tonight. I have a credit card to make that happen. Daddy’s way of making up for something someone else did to me.
“If only I’d bought you that car.” he said the other day, while we were watching a movie together.
I immediately knew what he was talking about. I had begged him for a car when I turned fifteen. Then, a year later, I begged him for a car again. But he wouldn’t let me have one. He was convinced that a bike did just as much – it just took you a little while longer. I was mad at him for a week, but I noticed he found it rather amusing whenever I refused to talk to him or answer his questions. He even made a game out if it.
In his mind, buying me that car wouldn’t have let up to all of this. I wouldn’t have been kidnapped. I’d thought about it too, in the fortress, but just like everybody else, they need to stop feeling guilty. I learned that eventually, any difference might have brought me here as well. Some things in life are inevitable, you see. And nobody can possibly foresee them.
“I sometimes blamed myself.” I answered him while keeping my eyes focussed on the television. “If only I’d left on time that day, then I wouldn’t have crossed John’s path.”
I heaved a silent sigh and blocked out the memory of that evening. That terrifying experience of being grabbed off my bike. That’s when I turned my head to look my father in the eye. They were sparkling.
“Truth is, I didn’t get that car. And mom didn’t pick me up after school. And Ellen let me leave alone. And John picked me. And the sky is blue and donuts are delicious.”
He frowned in a disturbed way.
“It was meant to be, Pápa.” I explained.
He started nodding almost invincibly.
“I never thought anything bad would happen to my little girl, you see.” he sighed after a thoughtful moment. “I was supposed to keep you safe. From all the awful things in the world. I promise I’ll do that from now on.”
He put his hand on mine and softly smiled. The next day, he got me a credit card.
“Don’t worry. Come on, I’ll buy you a drink.” I tell Lauren, while crossing arms with her.
She smirks and looks over to a sign hanging across the counter.
“This is an open bar.” she informs me in a serious voice.
But I refuse to commit to her depressed mood. We’ve had our moment in the fortress. We relived our lives as victims. Now it’s time to move on, or I’ll end up falling asleep crying.
“Fine. Then you buy me a drink.” I smartly propose.
She pats my shoulder and tells me to sit down. Then, she orders us both a margarita. And another one. And another one.
It’s no surprise that we’re heavily kissing and feeling each other up when we enter the hotel room. She started caressing the skin of my upper arm after the third drink. Result: goosebumps. Later, the tips of her fingers circled along the hem of my bra, slightly visible by my shirt sliding down my shoulders. Result: I got nervous right away – not to mention, turned on. By the time we reached the elevator, she had pinned me up against the mirrored wall inside. She groped me wherever she could reach for my skin and I can’t say I didn’t enjoy it. Her lips touched mine aggressively. She was horny as hell. And slightly drunk, but so was I. Miraculously, we didn’t lose that keycard somewhere on our way here. We even managed to smuggle a bottle of wine upstairs.
While she lets go of me to pull her shirt over her head, an intoxicated version of me starts giggling while pouring out two glasses of wine. I put the bottle down and try to have a sip of my beverage when she takes it away from me to pull my pants.
“Come over here, Mariana!” she commands.
I get pushed on the bed and she straddles me. The look in her eyes confuses me, even though I’m not exactly at a point where my mind’s properly working. But I know this girl. She’s frustrated, she’s sad about today and all the feelings she went through in a brief period of time. So am I. Part of me is convincing myself to stop her from attacking me in such a violent, yet extremely yummy, way. But I can’t help myself. I’ve been waiting to kiss her for so long. I’ve been dreaming of having sex with her for months.
And so it happens: whatever plans she has with my body, I let her achieves those goals. I feel great for the first time since long. I feel loved and horny as hell and like myself at last.
An hour later, we’re naked under the sheets, panting heavily. The initial rush of the arousal has vanished, so now there’s that awkward after-sex moment where nobody knows what to say. I’m just silently stroking her hair.
“Mariana. Are you okay?” she eventually asks me.
She’s not making excuses for what happened between us. On the contrary, she crawls up against me and puts her head on my shoulder. I can’t help but smile like a happy bastard.
“I wish I could fall asleep right now and be in a coma for a thousand years … On the other hand, I’d really like to finish my glass of wine first.”
She starts giggling and pokes my ribs, which makes me shriek.
“I hate how smart you are, sometimes.” she tells me.
I nod amusingly and close my eyes extremely worn out: “Yeah, it bothers me too.”
But then reality comes knocking and my phone makes some vibrating sounds. I escape from her touch and reach for my device on the night table.
“Who is it? Ellen?” a curious Lauren asks, leaning on her elbow.
I love how jealous she gets over my friend. Especially since Ellen is anything but gay. But I’m not the one who’s going to tell her that.
“Yeah, she’s asking how today went. Not really sure how I’m going to explain this one.”
I said too much without thinking, because I’m not sure if it was an appropriate comment. She remains quiet, so I turn my body back at her after sending a brief answer.
“Tomorrow, we have to go back to our lives,” a sobered up Lauren informs me.
She’s staring at the sheets instead of me. I nod, thinking about the meaning behind that.
“You mean your boyfriend and your family.”
That’s when she looks up to me and carries sincerity in her eyes that make me fall in love with her all over again.
“You are my family, Mariana.”
I crawl back under the white fabric comfortably and wrap my arms around her naked body. A soft peck gets placed against her forehead and I heave a heavy sigh. She then stares into my eyes for a very long time. If we wouldn’t be connected on such a level, it’d be awkward. It’s not. It’s like coming home at last, just like she says. A tear wanders her soft cheek and I wipe it away with a kiss. She grasps on to me, to recognize my heartbeat and I smile like a complete love fool. She closes the gap between our mouths and enrolls us in a passionate kiss. That’s when we start making love. Soft, tender. Completely different than just now. I kiss her skin and taste it. I feel her touch and absorb it. I look into her eyes and get her. She’s my girl. The precious girl John gave me.
I wake up around three A.M. and escape to the bathroom to enjoy a hot shower. Nothing like the sensation of water to erase my worries and organize my thoughts. I close my eyes and get carried away by the touch of some sticky hairs on my face. My elbows are placed against the white wall in front of me and my breathing is concentrated and relaxing. The adventure of returning to the fortress is disturbing my sleep tonight. I can’t shake it off: the smell, the atmosphere, the memories, John’s face, …
Suddenly, I feel the presence of another person in the room. Though the water flow is keeping me from hearing anything else and I still have my eyes shut, I immediately know it’s her. She opens the cabin door and enters the shower to stand behind me. When I turn around to have a look at her, I notice she’s still wearing the shirt she’s sleeping in. It’s soaked before I can comment on it. All I see is the shape of her breasts through the fabric that’s sticking to her skin. Without saying a word, she hooks her pinkies under the hem of her panties to pull them down in a sensual way. Those eyes keep staring into mine. Her feet step out of the fabric one by one. I swallow deeply and put the tips of my fingers on her lips. She trembles under my touch and that weirdly amuses me. It doesn’t take long before she softly kisses me. It’s quite intense and passionate. Warm as well.
“Lauren.” I whisper, even though I have no idea what I’m about to say to her.
She hushes me and puts both hands on my cheeks. After a few kissing moments, her body forces me back, until my naked butt and back touch the cold tiles of the wall. I grasp for air, because the change in temperature startles me – but it just makes her laugh joyfully in my mouth. She then kisses me again, longer and deeper this time. The cold on my back has magically disappeared; all I experience right now is the unexplainable heat her touch activates inside of me. Her hands start exploring my naked body. She loves it when I’m not wearing any clothes. It gives her the freedom to go wherever she wants without any obstacles. I understand it: I prefer this girl naked as well.
The water is still flowing down the shower head and I love this entire scenario so very much. I pull the soaking wet shirt over her head and throw it next to our feet, on top of her panties. Now we’re both fragilely naked. Her knees push my legs apart and the movement turns me on massively. For God’s sake, we’ve just had sex twice in the last couple of hours, how is it possible that we still haven’t had enough? When I open my eyes for a brief second to look at her, I suddenly find the answer slapping in my face: just look at her. Look at that smoking hot body. That intense stare of desire, completely animal-like. Her wet, blonde hairs are highlighting the perfection of her body structure and everything inside of me commands to touch her in every perfect place. She’s now making soft, erotic moaning noises, which turn me on massively. She’s still pushing me against the wall, her right leg forced in between mine. The rhythmic moves she’s producing are way too enjoyable to be innocent. Our kissing remains romantically cute, though, like it’s the first time in a while since we’ve had a make out session. Her fingers play around with my breasts for a while and in return, I knead the flesh of her muscled back while heavily panting.
After a few minutes, she kneels to pick up the sexy shirt I just rescued her sensual body from and I frown all confused.
“What are you doing?” I ask, in a frustrating way.
All I want is for her to keep touching me, to have hot, shower sex with me. Why is she stopping? She takes the piece of clothing and wraps it around my wrists. I curiously smile. Then, she pushes my arms over my head to tie me to the riser rail against the wall. Given my history, you’d think I’d dislike certain behavior. Sorry to disappoint you, but I don’t. This girl just tied me up, so she can do whatever the hell it is she wants with me. And I’m more than happy to let her.
After some nervous laughter, she starts kissing my neck. Her head lowers to my collar bone, which drives me crazy. The discovery journey leads her down my stomach and my waist, just until she reaches that place down there that was invented for ultimate joy. I pull my hands down in a way to deal with the sensation, but they can’t move. The shirt won’t allow me. So now all I can do is stand there, experience the work of wonder she’s capable of and pray to God that it won’t make my knees collapse.
“We can just stay a day longer … Talk. Hang out.” Lauren proposes in the morning, wearing nothing more than a shirt and some panties.
She doesn’t want us to say goodbye again.
“No, we can’t.” I answer, semi-ridiculing her words.
But the blonde lady reacts rather agitated: “Why not?”
I sigh as I finish packing my backpack.
“Well, whatever happened in the shower a few hours ago may be an indication.”
I smirk over the hot memory.
“And if we’re going to stay here another night, I’m going to get us a bottle of wine again. And we’ll end up being drunk – again. And when we’ll both be drunk, you’re going to wish I’d never leave.”
A proud smile is thrown her way, but she can’t appreciate my smug face.
“Don’t say things like that …”
“Why not?” I frown.
“Because I have a … a boyfriend now.”
God, did she really just say that? It’s the first time she uses that word. Strangely, she doesn’t seem to support her own comment. It’s like she just uses it to keep a distance. Her voice delivered it in a repulsive way.
“Yeah … I don’t care about that.” I smirk, completely ignoring the fact that I’m massively jealous. “And neither did you yesterday. Or in the shower.”
Clearly, the sunlight has brought her some guilt and doubt. She’s been acting weird all morning, talking about progress and our hard work and how this might keep us back from going forward. I didn’t understand any of it.
“This isn’t how I wished for us to end up.” she tries – miserably. “But I’m finally doing better. Look at you, you’re all confident and sure about everything. I’m not the only one making progress. Being away from me helped you as well. You’ve turned into such a great woman. All strong and confident again. Look … You know I wish this could be different.”
How is anything of what she just said a reason to stay apart? I don’t know why, but my entire body is working up. I feel angry and overwhelmed and something inside of me is conscious of how irrational I’m reacting. But I can’t help it. It feels like all of my hidden emotions suddenly take control of me. Like everything that’s ever rushed through my head suddenly collides and decides to take it out on her. Maybe it’s the thought that she’ll be gone in a few hours. Maybe it’s the fear the experience that same amount of pain when it comes to missing her all over again.
“Oh, please, don’t start.” I suddenly snap. “What are you going to tell me? That you love me? That you wish you could be be with me? Because you have a really weird way of showing that. Screw my brains out and then tell me you’re going back to your loser boyfriend? You don’t love me, Lauren. You don’t even care about me. Because you wouldn’t be doing this to me if you did.”
Lauren comes rushing towards me and kisses me hard, in a way to make me stop talking – to stop from saying all these horrible words.
“Don’t say that. You know it’s not true.” she begs of me, breathing through my mouth.
I pant and nod compliantly after accepting my bad behavior towards her. She’s telling the truth. I said a terrible thing. I know that. And I didn’t mean any of it. Not a single word. Somewhere, I still feel shaken up about yesterday and this is my way of acting out. By being a bitch.
She holds my hands and remains in front of me for a few more seconds. This girl knows something’s up. She didn’t see me cry yesterday, because I didn’t let her. But I can’t fool her. Not even with my best game. That’s why we end up on the bed again, staring into the light of day.
“Talk to me, Mariana. It’s me.”
She has the softest and most caring voice ever. One that doesn’t make me reconsider.
“This was a mistake, Lauren. I’m a mess again. Going back there … I saw our bed. The basement. Our life together. And you know what I was thinking? I was thinking how it would be really great if we could go back in time and you wouldn’t have been there that night. How convenient it would be if you wouldn’t have kissed me and made love to me. And that way I wouldn’t have fallen so madly in love with you and everything would just stop hurting.”
My breathing is nervous and fragile. I feel so emotionally disturbed. It’s killing me.
“It would stop, because we’re not there anymore. We’re out here and things are so complicated right now. And if that night had never happened, every time I took a breath without you being around me, it wouldn’t cut through me like a knife. Because that’s the pathetic idiot I’ve become: I’m the heartbroken, kidnapped girl who can’t get over you. I cry in my sleep, thinking of you. I’m the loser I used to laugh at. And let me tell you: I was never a loser before I met you. Not even in that fucking basement. I was a fighter and …”
Hearing me talk about the old version of me chokes me up for a second. I catch a deep breath as I close my eyes. My whispering, almost pleading voice, appears. I can’t even look at her. My eyes are squeezed shut with fear that I might get too vulnerable.
“I want you to be happy. But I can’t accept that I’m not the reason for your happiness. And now all I do is wish that I could forget you. I wish that I could change how I feel about you.”
Although I can’t see her right now, my imagination predicts exactly how she’s dealing with my words. She’s sitting there, staring at me, hoping that I’ll be brave enough to look her in the eye. Except I’m not. Being out here is more scary than every second I spend in that house.
“Really?” she asks, carrying pain in her voice.
A deep sigh escapes my mouth and I give in. That’s when I open my eyes to stare into hers. My heart skips a beat. That’s when I realize.
“No.” I sigh.
That afternoon, we say our goodbyes at my place. She’ll be on a plane later today, heading back to her new home – leaving me behind again. I don’t know when she’ll be back. I don’t dare to ask. Maybe she just doesn’t know.
Her mom has called her all night long, all morning and even now, her phone is still buzzing. It’s refreshing to see how Lauren doesn’t really care a lot about the anxious attempt of attention from her mother. Almost like being with me matters more. Maybe that’s just what I like to see in all of it.
I don’t know if I’m capable of missing her again. I had found a way to live without her, but she just rushed into my bubble out of nowhere and despite the aftermath, she just took whatever she wanted: me.
One last time, she cups my face with her warm hands and kisses me softly on the lips. I taste her existence, her love, her pain. She’s thankful for what happened between us the last twenty four hours. And so am I. But that doesn’t make it hurt any less.
When she lets go of me and turns around, we both find an entertained Ellen staring at us with her eyebrows raised. She went out to go grab some groceries. Lauren shyly says hi, recognizing her from pictures, and walks away from the both of us. Her cheeks are red from flushing.
“I’m Lauren. Nice to meet you.”
Ellen smirks and nods in a friendly way: “Ellen. Hi.”
“We were just … saying goodbye.” Lauren faintly tries to come up with an excuse.
I immediately start grinning over that comment, but put a hand in front of my mouth in time to stop from laughing out loud.
Ellen nods, completely unconvinced and crosses her arms in an analyzing way: “Wow, you must be going away for a long time, then.”
My gesture to chop her head off the second she comes near me shuts her up. Lauren ignores the comment with blushing cheeks and just as she’s about to disappear into a cab, she turns her head to me one last time. I nod, telling her I’m fine and mouth a silent goodbye. She does the same, waves at me with sad puppy eyes and gets in. That’s when I feel the weight of the world taking its place on my shoulders. I experience a rapid movement of my heartbeat and realize what people are talking about when they say their heart is breaking. Ellen walks over to me and frowns judgmentally, hiding a smile.
“Shut up.” I tell her, before any word comes flying out of that big gap.