When I walked into the hotel room, the party was still going full-force. I was exhausted and at least six drinks behind.
“Yeah, you look like you’ve been on a bus for seven hours,” was the first thing that he said to me, but a few minutes later, when he patted the floor and I sat down beside him, everything was easy, comfortable.
I’d known him forever: A weekend spent at a friend’s parents’ house in Texas sophomore year of college. . . A situation requiring an extra car on the return trip. . . Six hours in the passenger’s seat of a Suburban neither of us owned. . . Sunday nights with Jules watching cartoons on his sofa. . . And of course the few months I spent hooking up with his room mate.
A birthday message had re-opened the dialogue, and it gained momentum until we were talking every day-- John procrastinating writing business school papers and me staying in to enforce my no-making-out resolution. The internet makes it easy-- the facelessness of it makes it easy to tell everything, and the two of us needed no time to catch up.
We stretched out on the floor that night, and whispered before the wedding ceremony started the next afternoon. I ate the tiny zucchini off his plate at the reception, and we wandered off alone to eat cake. His arm kept falling around my waist, and I can’t say I minded. The party didn’t stop-- there was drinking back at the hotel and decorating the bride and groom’s car. He was wasted. But, somehow, at 4 a.m., I was sober. Very, very sober.
At the end of the night (rather the early, early morning), I climbed into the giant bed between John and Jay. And in the morning I woke up between them, before them. I didn’t touch John on the hand or on the chest or at all, so I don’t know what it would have felt like. And we, sluggishly, went to the send-off brunch. I ate the orange slice off his plate, and he had to go to the airport, and I’ll probably never know what it would have felt like.