Friday, September 14, 2012

No Better Than Before

Shan didn't have a good feel to this. How in the hell did he let Lily talk him in to going with her? A kegger at the lake. Oh yeah, this was there last week together. Then it was off to sweet old Dad's house. For good.

But was she there at the bomb fire with him, sitting at the lake's edge? Of course not.

Shan sat there ridged, chewing at the inside of his jaw trying to keep calm. He hated this side of Lily. But wasn't this the Lily he knew. The one who was flirty and would do just about anything to feel young and free.

Lily was off with her new girlfriend Ronnie, who looked like that punk with the pink hair on a TV show that Shan never could quite get through. Why would he expect anything different from his so called-best friend?

He pushed his thick hair back as smoke was getting into his eyes. Maybe that was why he felt as if he might be bleeding  tears. Just then he caught a preppy looking fellow in his pale polo shirt and plaid chinos looking him over. Shan ignored him.

A suddenly shiver stung him. Was this what Lily was getting at? Hook up with the nearest stranger?

Shan winced hard and got to his feet. Thank God, he was in his sneakers. He bit his bottom lip. He needed to go, looking at the dark sky for guidance. Where in the hell was the north star? Shan needed to go in the opposite direction.

"Want a beer?" The Gossip Girl boy toy wanna be asked. His perfect shock of blonde hair grazed over his left eye. He was much closer than Shan anticipated.

"No." Shan backed away. He suddenly felt like a caged animal. It was as if they were waiting for the fun to begin. "Uh..uh..would you tell Lily..if..if you see her..I..I had to go."

"But I could give you a lift." His lips curved up as if other ideas were lodged in his head. This so called college guy didn't look completely misguided, but Shan didn't trust him.

"I don't think so." Shan shook his head. No way in hell was he going to get caught up in this so-called party.

"Aw..but we haven't even been formally introduced..have we?" He kept smiling as if he were ready to share some of his pills. If only, Shan would cooperate. "I'm Alf."

Shan felt as if the night was about to cut him into bits if he hung around another second. He only excused himself as if he might need to go pee, alone. Of course, he wouldn't mention it. He really didn't want Alf to follow.

Thankful, the night was dark in the woods and Shan didn't seem to mind. He ran up the rocky embankment, moving toward the sound of the freeway. Luckily, he saw it from the top of the hill. And from the hill in the distance was the campus.

He didn't know how he actually got here. They'd met with Lily's friend on campus. She was a college student that Lily met online. Shan didn't even have supper. Her stomach growled now, but he forged on hoping he could follow along the freeway to get back to the campus.

It would be horrible if his Dad heard about this. His father ran a tight ship. Although, Shan hadn't been a part of that vessel in an awful long time. However, his Mom got married over the summer and she thought it was time for him to get to know his Dad, before it was too late. Something like that. Of course, Shan didn't like the thought of moving in with his Dad's new family.

Although, he didn't think too much about it as he ran as swiftly as he could away from the traffic. This was the last thing he needed. To get ran over.

Finally, more street lights welcomed him. So did the fast food chains. Shan slowed down as if maybe he'd dodged the bullet. He felt bad for leaving Lily, yet not. They might as well be done. He was tired of being loyal to someone who could care less about his feelings or being left in the cold. Still, she was his only real friend.

He listened to his heartbeat now. His mother always said he had the stamina of an athlete. Of course, he couldn't be so sure. He did like a smoke now and again. Usually, not tobacco.

But he was a loner. He never shared his stash, and he did make it last longer than most. Shan was good at making things last. He wasn't quite a slacker, although, it could have been his secret life.

He stopped at a TACO BELL for something on the dollar menu. He wolfed down a taco and a burrito. Afterwards, on the walk back to campus, he reached for a cigarette. A few puffs would do. He'd put it out before anyone knew. He hoped.

As he made his way back to the dorm, he passed by the student center. It was so lonely now. It was lit inside. And there he was sort of like a window display, sitting on a posh chair. His head stuck to his cell.

Shan smiled as he licked a piece of tobacco from his tongue. It was crazy to think he might be attracted to this giraffe looking boy. His hair looked like something from a Dr. Seuss story. Shan watched from afar. He bet this Henry already had someone. He was probably straight, too. Anyway, Shan didn't date. Didn't exactly believe he could be a part of that society.

Besides, he was waiting for someone worthy of him, wasn't he? Was that selfish to think?

Shan winced, took another draw from his cigarette. He let the buzz float through him. He pushed the heat of the cigarette on the palm of his hand. He winced hard thinking it didn't burn him at all. Maybe he was tuff, after all.

Yes, he was still here. The slight burn was almost a simple rush.  Although, he couldn't help but watch Henry a little longer from the darkness.

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