My ears ring as the music blares at a ridiculously high decibel. The party rages. Strange and foreign bodies intermingle with each other in synchronized motion. And I find myself oddly at peace with it all. The darkness helps hide the shame.
“I have to pee,” Julie whines over the speaker.
“Me too.” I don’t, but I know I’ll be obligated to anyways.
Twenty minutes later, we find ourselves still in line for the coveted bathroom. A disproportionately female line, I might add.
“I wish I could pee on a house,” Julie grumbles as the remaining man in line loses his patience and some dignity and walks down the stairs outside to relieve himself.
“Don’t we all.”
A girl behind us giggles. I turn and smile appreciatively at her. She gets me.
“Oh my god, I love your shoes.” She squeals a little too loud. My heart begins to race.
“They were only 20 bucks.” I explain proudly.
She gasps as if I just shattered her very fabric of existence.
“I’m serious. JcPenney.” I smile.
“Your hair looks super cute.” I touch a strand of her curly red locks. She smiles and her dark eyes expand in delight. The undisclosed rules of polite conversation have been satisfied.
“You’re SO sweet.” She touches my arm. I examine her face. Do we have bio together?
“So are you.” I reply touching her shoulder. This gesture bonds us. Bio girl and I against the world. In this moment, I would take a bullet for her.
I did not notice that the line has moved. I give bio girl a knowing nod goodbye as Julie grabs my hand and pulls me into the bathroom. The door locks behind us. I tower, uncomfortably close, over Julie as she pees. I can smell the alcohol on her lips from here.
I never know where to look in these moments.
“There’s no soap,” Julie grumbles as she shuffles past me to the sink. Of course, there’s not. The empty hand soap bottle taunts us, as Julie sloshes her hands with cold water. No towel either. She wipes her hands on her black leggings. She pauses to check her lipstick in the mirror. At this point, the smell of urine and beer starts to make me nauseous.
Five minutes later, we exit the bathroom. The party has died down since our departure. Bio girl has vanished completely. And as I began my walk home, I couldn’t help but wonder how her night ended, and if she ever found the cherished bathroom she was looking for.