Warning. This may be triggering.
“I love you two. I want you both to come to Northwestern.” Juliette throws out her arms and nearly smacks Nick in the face. He ducks, still holding her tight against his chest.
“I can make plays for you right here, sweetheart.” He winks at her.
She rolls her eyes slightly but doesn’t make any move to get Nick to release her. “It’s because you won can you say those things.”
“We can both be winning in about five minutes.”
“You’re too young to be this smooth.” She runs a hand down his chest clearly enjoying being held up in the air and being pelted with bad lines.
“I have a lot to learn. If only there were someone willing to teach me.” He adopts a pitiful air and dips his head slightly so she can run her fingers through the bottom strands of his hair.
Juliette giggles. “I’ve been known to give some private lessons.”
He whispers something to her that makes her flush and her eyelids slide to half mast. He doesn’t need lessons, at least not the kind that she’s able to teach but whatever he’s said has Juliette ready to abandon her party. She points upstairs and he strides off to find some privacy for them both.
After the two leave, someone brings me another drink and there’s a steady stream of North Prep kids along with some others who come out to give me a high five. Nick and Juliette are gone for a long time. Long enough for the clothes to start coming off and the pool lights to dim. There are couples in different stages of undress and coupling all along the pool’s edge and in the water itself.
Jason Milhouse has Stephanie Stanton pinned to his chest and from the way she’s rhythmically bobbing up and down it doesn’t take much to guess exactly what’s going on. Another guy on the basketball team is leaning against the pool’s edge and his girlfriend is eating his face off. In the hot tub that’s below me and to the left, there are two big chested girls who I don’t recognize double teaming this year’s homecoming king. One is kissing him and the other has her hand down under the water. His face isn’t visible but it’s hard to imagine he’s unhappy.
On a night like tonight riding high from excess adrenaline, with a little too much alcohol, and enough pheromones in the air to make a virgin spread her legs, I’m feeling Charlotte’s absence keenly.
My dick is getting hard at watching the soft core porn taking place around me. In a couple of hours it will probably be triple x rated if Juliette has anything to say about it. The couples won’t be going at it under the water. No, they’ll have moved inside and be making out and out right fucking in her media room. It’s happened before and tonight has all the hallmarks of another debauchery.
Abruptly, I sit up. I should go. It’s not that I’d cheat on Charlotte but being here, feeling aroused and alone doesn’t make for a good situation.
Nick can stay here and I’ll pick him up in the morning. If he’s not entertained by Juliette all night, there’ll be someone else that will occupy his time. I text him that I’m heading out.
“Hey man, good fight.”
It’s the college guy that I knocked out—the one who was vying for Juliette’s favor and lost. I look at him warily but he’s got a guileless look on his face. Maybe he isn’t a bad sort. I shake the hand that he’s holding out.
He knocks the side of his forehead. “Got me good here with a roundhouse. Nice.”
“Thanks.” I throw him a bone. “My ribs are pretty sore.”
“No hard feelings,” he says and offers me a drink.
“Thanks but I’m heading out.”
“You can’t leave now or I will be offended. Come and have a drink.”
He gestures toward the living room. I see his crew sitting with…oh fuck, is that Greta? It is. She’s sitting on the lap of the guy that Nick dropped and looking pretty friendly. His hand is up her shirt and she’s looking pretty happy. I don’t like her much but I can’t leave without making sure that she’s there because she wants to be not because she’s too drunk to be able to say no. With a sigh, I take the drink. “Lead on.”
“Buck Morrison. Sophomore at Northwestern.”
“Nate Jackson. Senior, North Prep.”
“You planning on fighting professionally?” Buck asks as we drop down into chairs next to Greta and her new friend.
“Doubtful,” interjects Greta pulling her lips away. Her man starts mouthing her neck but Greta appears uninterested and, more importantly, not very drunk. “His dad owns a huge hedge fund. Don’t you plan on taking over?”
There’s a snideness to her voice, almost an accusation that I have too much. I don’t know where it comes from given that her family is well off. Maybe not as well off as my parents, but they aren’t hurting.
“Not right now,” I say but I’m not interested in talking about my future with this girl. I haven’t even had that talk yet with Charlotte.
“Nice.” Buck nods his head. “Daddy Warbucks paving your way.”
I bristle at this statement. I’m not interested in people measuring the size of my dick based on who my dad is. It’s exactly why I’m going to join the military but I’m not going to share that with these fools. “Sure,” I respond impatiently. “You okay Greta? I didn’t know you knew any guys at Northwestern.”
She rolls her eyes. “Not everyone’s interested in fighting.” Her friend squeezes her boob and Greta releases a fake moan. At least it sounds fake to me but Buck grins like it’s a hot sound.
“Drink up man. You can’t knock me out and then not share a drink together after. That’d be bad sport.” He knocks his cup against mine.
The dark liquid appears to be some cola mixed with rum. He’s right. Dad would think poorly of me if I just walked out but that’d mean I’d have to wait another hour to make sure I’m okay to drive. I guess after this I’d head upstairs and find Nick and Juliette. There’s got to be a small room in this place where I can chill out by myself.
I swallow half the glass. It’s a really shitty drink mix. Greta’s watching me avidly as if I’m the most interesting creature she’s ever seen. Her man is mauling her now, hand between her legs, another up the back of her shirt, but he could be caressing a stone for all the response he’s generating. No, it’s me she’s fixated on in some weird way.
I down the rest of my cup to show Buck that I’m a good sport, barely able to conceal the wince as the last of the bitter contents drains down my throat. Greta leans forward, satisfaction thick in her voice and evident on her face. “Remember this. You’re only getting what you deserve.”
Her face is chilling. I swing my gaze to Buck and he too looks smug but I’m no lightweight. I stand up and head immediately for the bathroom. I’m going to stick my finger down my throat until it all comes out. But before I can make it, Buck grabs me from behind and places an arm around my neck. I struggle but the effects the alcohol and the drug are hitting me. The arm at my windpipe is making my vision fog.
I stumble and careen into a hallway wall. Buck grunts behind me as he takes the brunt of the hit. Thrusting my head backward, I try to knock him out. There’s a curse and then a prick at my waste. Greta is there and she’s holding something long and metallic. And then…it’s all a blur. My head is heavier than an anvil. My ears are blocked and I can’t open my eyes but I sense movement. I try to lift my head up to see where I’m going but it’s too heavy and my eyes are glued shut.
At one point I’m on the cusp of awareness. I can hear noises around me like the rustling of clothes. There’s a tug at my waist and then the denim of my jeans gives way. Am I home? I try to roll my head to the side but there’s a hand preventing me from moving. It must be a really powerful hand because my entire body feels immobile. Struggling against the bonds does me no good. A coolness hits my groin and chest, as if both are bare. The voices in the room sound tinny and far away.
“God, he’s huge.”
“Shit and he’s not even erect.”
“He’s wasted on that girlfriend of his. She probably only knows how to do it missionary style.”
“I’d let him take me anyway he wants.”
“Get on with it.” That voice sounds like Buck, the guy I beat up.
“You’re a dead man,” I say but it comes out slurred. In the small recesses of my brain, I figure it out. He’s drugged me. They’ve drugged me. Him and Greta. I don’t know who else is involved. I hold on to one thought. No matter what happens to me, I’ll make them pay. It won’t end well for any of them.