It was love at first sight that muggy early summer afternoon at the dimly lit local mall.
I could tell she was smitten with me immediately. She gawked, rather shamelessly, for a few brief moments and then quickly shuffled away.
I watched her continue to eye me as she aimlessly walked from rack to rack having a seemingly internal battle about what to do. After what felt like a lifetime she walked back over to me. I learned that her name was Kelsey and that’s how it all began.
A few weeks later was the Fourth of July and she decided it was time to introduce me to her friends. It was going to be my coming out of sorts.
So that hot Wednesday afternoon she packed up the car and we started our trek to her friend’s house. I could tell she was nervous; her ex boyfriend was also going to be there and I knew she wanted us to make a good impression. She kept glancing at me with a shy smile.
Her friends loved me and I heard them whispering about me throughout the night.
“So cute Kels!” one squealed at her when she went into the kitchen to get another beer.
“Where can I get one?” another said with a nudge and a wink.
I was a huge success and I could tell she was thrilled. We were off to a great start.
The rest of the summer we were practically inseparable. Her friends and family joked that I looked like I was made for her. She said all the time that I was the best thing she’d ever walked out of that crappy mall with.
As the summer came to a close she prepared to go back to school and we realized our time together was going to grow shorter. Some seemed to think that I was only “summer material”.
I went with her on move in day and just hung around while she unpacked and went shopping with her roommate. I didn’t mind patiently waiting; I knew I’d get my time eventually.
Finally after dinner she announced they were having friends over and then we were going out. Once again I was going to be introduced to new friends and she was excited.
Her roommate, Lauren, raved about how great I was and when her other friends came over we took a ton of pictures to capture us together. Little did I know then but it was the beginning to the end.
By the time we finally made it out the boxed wine had been flowing a little too fast and she and her friends were a little too drunk.
A few hours later we all stumbled back to her apartment and we quickly darted into her room. As she rummaged around trying to prepare for the next day, her first day of classes, I grew increasingly nervous. Something bad was going to happen, I just knew it.
When she was finally ready for bed she struggled trying to get out of her skinny jeans. Everyone’s seen the commercials that depict girls jumping and dancing around to button their jeans and she was exactly the same, except she was trying to take hers off. Normally I would have laughed at her clumsiness but I had a bad feeling tonight.
I saw her trip before she even realized it herself. I wanted to help, to try and catch her but I couldn’t. She got tangled up in her pants and we went tumbling to ground. It’s amazing the amount of furniture she made contact with on our way down. She managed to smash her head against her desk and then proceeded to bounce her face on her bed frame. We landed on the floor with a crash. She crumbling on top of me, pinning me to the ground.
Lauren was immediately at the door, pounding and demanding to be let in.
“Give me a second Lauren!” Kelsey yelled back as she sat on the floor trying to regain her composure. I felt something hot and wet dripping onto me.
When she finally crawled and opened the door, Lauren gasped. “You look like a car accident victim from a movie!” she cried as she yanked us into the hallway. The dripping was getting worse; I wished it would stop so I could focus on what was happening.
She never takes herself very seriously and a fall like that is pretty sobering. She brushed past Lauren heading towards the bathroom and said with a laugh “I definitely broke my nose”.
Nothing prepared me for what I saw when we looked in the mirror…
There was blood smeared across her face and in her hair. She really did a number on herself. The worst part is there was blood all over me. On my collar and the buttons that line the front of me.
“Well this shirt is probably done for,” she said off-handedly as she started to clean herself up.
WHAT?! That statement was my worst nightmare. We had come so far and now a stupid accident was going to ruin everything! She should have stopped drinking earlier and none of this would have happened! I’m starting to panic. I don’t want to be thrown out! I wanted to beg her to put me in the wash and fix this. There was still hope we could recover.
Well that fateful night was six long months ago. Kelsey was preoccupied with her consequential black eye and her classes and didn’t get around to washing me for a week or two. By then it was too late and the stains had set forever. She claims to be upset that her “favorite shirt” is ruined but if she really meant that she would have tried to save me faster. So now I sit in a bin under her bed, with other rejected clothes waiting to be donated and ignored by her, who claimed to love me. What a lie.