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it's all wrong...
at work, the first thing marie did was show me her huge paycheck. i was jealous and she laughed and said, 'next time we drink, it's on me.'
next time we drink? why are we drinking again? i thought i didn't drink. i thought i was a good kid... no drugs, no sex, no drinking... i thought this drinking was a one-time thing, because i'm 21, so i have to try it once, right? but now i've tried it, so why do it again? if molly asked me to get drunk with her, i would say no without thinking twice... but this is marie... and if marie says there will be a next time, then there will be a next time. i don't want to drink, but i want to drink with marie.

things go downhill. sara calls off, and i was going to go home a half hour early, so i could catch the bus, but without her, they need me to say. marie says she'll take me home. i like being alone with marie... i like having her undivided attention, especially when she's feeling like she likes me.
then kiera calls off, and she was supposed to be the night cashier tonight. teena asks me to stay, and i really don't want to, but i can't decide why. if i stayed, there would only be 8 hours between the time i got off work here and the time i had to be at udf tomorrow. by the time you count for transportation and showers and all that jazz, i'll only get about 5 or 6 hours of sleep, and i only got 5 hours of sleep last night because i got up early to go out with katie this morning. so i need sleep. and i need to pack. friday night, when i get off work, i'll have to go straight to bed because i work again saturday morning at udf, and then again saturday afternoon here... so if i work the night shift tonight, i won't be able to pack until sunday night, and we're moving on wednesday. i'm slow about packing, and i need more time than that... but while these excuses play in my mind and come out of my mouth, i worry that the underlying reason is just that i don't want to give up that ride home with marie. i've already looked at the schedule and i know that i pretty much won't see her again for two weeks. i work with her a half hour on sunday, but it's the first half hour of my shift, so it will be busy and she won't talk to me. besides that, i'll be going two weeks without her... i want to see her tonight as much as possible. and if that's my real reason for not wanting to do the night shift, it's an awful reason. i stall and tell teena i don't know, and i try to figure out which reasons are my real reasons.

i get a headache and some customers get upset and there's way too much to do...

marie asks if i love her, and i answer, 'yes, no, i don't know.'
she says, 'you know, you're really starting to hurt my feelings,' and then she stops speaking to me for a while.

marie gets mad at me because i want a break when i'm due for one, and she doesn't want to give me one. by the time we finally go to leave, we're both grumpy, and so is teena, who is staying to be the night cashier because i ultimately decided that my fake reasons were good reasons, even if the marie reason was awful.

marie says we have to go to wendy's before we go home, and then we have to bring it back to teena. we go... she accelerates fast, and i tell her she scares me. she barks, all evil, 'i SCARE you?!?!?!'
'no, no, no, i didn't mean it,' i say quickly.
she laughs and touches my face and tells me that she loves me, and that i make her laugh. then she says, 'i'm hanging out with tyrone, paul, and kyle this weekend.'
is she trying to make me jealous? what am i supposed to say to that? i ask meekly, 'why?'
'because they're funny and i like them. is that ok with you?'
no, it's not ok. it's not ok because i know she likes them more than she likes me. i want her to want to hang out with me this weekend, not them. and i don't understand why she's telling me this, either. i think she's doing it on purpose... i reply flatly, 'yeah, do what you want.'
we pull into the drive-thru and she says, 'i love you,' and holds out her hand palm-up for mine. i put my hand in hers, and as her fingers slide between mine, everything else dissolves away. she loves me and i love the way those words make me feel. i love the way her hand feels. i think i might love her, and i wish i didn't...

we take the food back to teena, and on the way home, we talk about me moving, and having my own car. she says she wants to move too. she offers, 'i'm gunna move in with you, and live on the floor of your room.'
i say ok.
she says yeah, she'll bring her bed and throw mine away.
i tell her, 'i want your bed.'
she says i can't have it, because she's not using mine, and then she adds, 'but we could both just share my bed.'
i tell her that's a good idea. and then, because i wonder if that was too blunt, i backtrack, 'because i hate my bed. it's tiny. i want to roll any which way and have room. and every time i move, my mattress moves with me.'
she answers, 'i know. we fell off, remember?'
how could i forget? her hands in my hair and her lips on mine, our bodies pressed together while our hips acted with minds of their own, thrusting and grinding... the moans and the gasps and the urgency with which i pushed and she pulled and we rolled... the mattress slipping, and us tumbling onto the ground, the moment lost... of course i remember... i will probably remember forever. i answer slowly, 'yeah.'
yeah, i remember., i want to say. i remember what we were doing when we fell out, too. do you? it seems like you don't. it seems like this is just funny, like you might say 'remember the day you wore mismatched shoes?' or, 'remember the time the bird got trapped in the store?' falling out of bed is not the whole memory to me; is it to you? was the rest of that meaningless? do you sleep with so many people that the only thing you remember me for is that we fell out of bed? fuck, marie, you mean something to me... why is it just a joke to you?
i sit silently and stare out the window. she's quiet too, and i wonder if she's thinking about the rest of that night, or if she's just making sure that she gives me plenty of time to remember it.
then she asks, 'so... molly doesn't know that you're... uhhh... quote unquote bad?'
'no,' i tell her.
'why not?' her question sounds impatient
'i don't know, because... what if she gets mad or something?'
'why would she? it's not like you're going to hit on her or anything,' she replies in disgust.
i don't like the response. i don't like the disgust, because i don't know what she means by it. is she trying to say that i'm hitting on her, that she's the one who should be mad at me? i certainly hope not... and i don't like it that she seems to miss the whole point. doesn't she realize that it's not an easy thing to do, to come out of the closet? maybe to other people it is... maybe to her, it's easy, but isn't it obvious that i'm not like them, and not like her? christine understood... why can't marie?
but i want to keep going, all the same. i want to talk about this, becuase if i could just make her understand, she'd be there for me, wouldn't she? i want to tell her how badly i want to come out to molly and aaron, how much i want them to know. i want to tell her how i had planned on doing it last night, and how molly went straight from one job to the other and i never even got the chance. i want to tell her about the ways i could say it, to describe those online quizzes, and the one i made, where the last question would out me to anybody who took the quiz. i'd like to hear her opinion on coming out that way. i want a real person to talk to, and i want it to be her. i want her advice, and i want her to hold me and promise she'll be there for me... so i start, 'no... but it's still scary.'
she says nothing.
'because i can't say that word, anyway.'
she's still silent.
'any of them. just bad, and she doesn't know that one.'
still no answer.
'it's hard, even if i wanted to, how could i, without the words?'
we pull up next to my apartment, and in answer to me spilling my soul, she says, 'ok, get out before another car traps me in.'
i feel like i was a balloon before, and somebody just let out the air. i'm numb inside and my limbs feel like jello. i get my bag and get out. i tell her, 'night,' and my voice sounds hollow.
she answers, 'night,' and she's driving away before the door even finishes closing. i watch her go, and then i stumble upstairs, into the apartment, and collapse onto the floor and just cry. molly's at aaron's and alana's at extra's and it's just me and my tears... alana and lauren have already moved all their stuff out. the room is empty and my sobs echo off the walls. i feel completely alone. i cry for me, and for marie, and for christine... god, i miss christine. why'd she have to leave me? i need her to come back... she understood... she would know what to say... she could fix it, and she would, i know she would... maybe she never slept with me, but at least she fucking cared... i hate this.

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you make me sad. i feel like i know you, although i only know what you've shared with everyone here, and we've never personally talked. but i feel sad for you. maybe not FOR you, but more WITH you, make sense? probably nothing i can do for you, but let me know if i can.


sure, it makes sense, and thank you. until i figure out what i need to do to help myself, there's probably nothing anybody else can do either, but i really do appreciate it...

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