I had this guy friend that I was significantly close with during our first year of University. He had seen me through some break-ups and I had seen him through some of his. It was a long time before I began to develop deeper feelings for him, and I fought these every step of the way – mainly because I knew that the possibility of him returning these affections was just about slim to none. He was disgustingly hung up on my roommate – typical. She was very cute, I will admit that, but also astonishingly ignorant, two-faced and slightly insane, not to mention that she had a long term boyfriend that wasn’t going anywhere any time soon. So, both he and I were cursed to live in this secretly torturous and unrequited love triangle for the rest of the year.
At one point late in that year, we had been drinking a lot and the two of us found ourselves alone together and we sat on one of the outside benches. He proposed the possibility of me and him becoming roommates the next year, along with a couple others. The alcohol in my blood stream wasn’t going to let me stay quiet and much to my inner horror the tears started to flow as I proclaimed, “B...b...but, I can’t live with you... I love you too much!” Oh fuck. I guess the cat was out of the bag then – no turning back. He was really good about it though – from what I can remember – I was a drunken train wreck that night. He understood and it surprisingly didn’t affect our friendship after that day – although we never brought it up either, not even in joking.
Guess who he ended up living with instead? I cringe even when I think of it... the two-faced insane chick, Andrea! So even though I had wisely decided that I wasn’t going to be a glutton for punishment, he thought he would do it instead. For a very intelligent guy, he sure was stupid when it concerned the affairs of his heart. I have no idea what went on in that house that year, but I couldn’t see it being a very emotionally healthy situation.
So, it was about mid-year and a large group of us had gone out for a bender at the pub around the corner from where they lived off campus. I still lived on campus, which was a fair distance away, and the last train of the night had long since gone. I stayed at their place, and my other girlfriend that lived there had a boyfriend, so I wasn’t going to be staying in her room that night. I suggested that I crash in his bed, and he gave me a ‘look’ as if to say, “Are you sure that’s a good idea?” I responded even before he could verbalize it with a slurred justification, “Jamie, get over yourself. I need to pass out now. I’ll stick to the left side!” So I did, with my back facing him and I passed out almost instantly.
A few hours must have gone by when I was awoken by him softly rubbing my back and playing with my hair. I was completely lucid, but I remained facing the wall for a few seconds, contemplating what the next move would be and how this could either be a wonderful thing, or a complete catastrophe. I rolled over and said one thing to him very sternly, “ARE-YOU-SURE?”
He nodded his head and whispered a faint “Yes” in assurance as he leaned in to kiss me. It quickly led to us having sex. It meant so much more to me than it did to him, but I knew what I was getting myself into. I had no expectations; I just wanted to be with him at that moment and that’s all that mattered.
Of course, the events of that night were made known by a couple people– it was almost impossible to keep a secret in that crazy house, which meant that Andrea knew what happened between Jamie and me. Two weeks had past and we all went out again for another drinking marathon. Jamie was sitting across from me when Andrea showed up. She skipped directly over to him and sat on his lap and put her arms around him. She shot me a devious smile before batting her eyes at Jamie and giving him a kiss on the cheek. Now, I know I have some personality flaws, but jealousy is not one of them – I never had an issue with it in high school, ever. I was also painfully aware that I had no claim to Jamie and that what had happened between us would probably never happen again, but something snapped inside me that night.
The alcohol couldn’t have exactly helped... but a jealous rage filled my stomach like a noxious acid and it was corroding me from the inside. I smiled back at Andrea and pretended that it didn’t bother me, but simultaneously I was imagining myself lunging across the table and beating that smug look off her face until she was black and blue. It’s unfortunate that she behaved the way she did – it is women like her that sadly make some women enemies of each other and I never fully understood that concept until that night. I was utterly astounded that she could take so much pleasure in hurting me – she knew exactly how I felt about Jamie. I never really cared for her before that night, but she reached a new low and I was done with her toxicity for good.
At 21, I would like to think that I had matured a bit since my tumultuous early teens, but the intense jealousy and hatred I felt that night took me totally by surprise and I clearly wasn’t out of the woods just yet. I decided that I needed to take a break from that crowd for a while and reclaim control over my emotions. Miraculously, Jamie and I maintained our friendship and even had sex a couple more times, but I never again went to visit their crazy little Melrose Place.