There was no cover charge, but they required you to buy either a drink or a dish off the menu. I ordered mozzarella sticks. Disgusting junk food, but oh so yummy. Tonight was the first time I ate junk food in a while. For some reason, tonight seemed a night I deserved it. The show lasted just under two hours. After, I walked across Baker Avenue to finally reenter campus having spent a whole day off it. Then it was a 15 minute trek back to Wilburn Hall. The mozzarella sticks were all I had ate since 11 in the morning so I headed straight to the caf for a strawberry chicken breast salad without taking my earbuds out. Then I went to my room.
When I opened the door, it was dark and empty except for the orange light from the street lamp creeping into the edge of the room. It’s the fourth floor and still the street lamps are strong enough to penetrate up here. Sunny wasn’t around. She never is. I can count using my fingers the number of times I’d run into her in our room. It took an entire semester for me to realize the situation. I went the whole of last semester wondering whether she might be inside each time I unlocked the door and twisted the stainless steel knob. It was only amidst the craze of finals week when I just went inside without a care for whether Sunny was inside or not. That’s when I began thinking of this room as just mine. My stuff no longer resides on only one half of the room and now spreads across the entirety of it. On top of Sunny’s desk — the one the university provided her — is my tea making station. I’ve just made a pot of earl gray.
I sit and drink it out of a mug I’m borrowing from the caf while opening up my laptop to check my email a final time before bed. Next door I hear my suitemates laughing at something. One of them continues their laugh as the other talks. My inbox is filled with class reminders for the upcoming week, pleas from the RA for us to attend upcoming hall events, and one peculiar email from a person I don’t recognize.
I hope that you get this. I just wanted to email you because there’s something I think you can help me with. It’s about Moriah. Could you meet me sometime this week for coffee?
PS: please don’t tell Talia.
Jim. It’s the Jimmy Moriah went to the movies with last night! I have no clue why he’s reaching out to me on email. He must’ve gotten my address from Moriah. Why did he not want me telling her that he was emailing me then. Or maybe he meant about us meeting, that is if we do end up meeting. I’m okay with meeting Jimmy, but I don’t want him to start imagining and assuming so I tell him that I’ll be at Expressions on Tuesday doing some work after 5:30. And that he can come by around then. I’m about to shut my laptop when he replies immediately. He says he’ll be there.
I brush my teeth, wash my face, and change into an ugly cotton t shirt. I put lotion on my face and then I dump out whatever’s left of the earl grey inside the teapot. Before getting into bed, I walk over to the window to shut the blinds.
I stare outside. The sky’s purple, the streetlamps cast patches of orange onto the sidewalks, and stiff trees stand bare out in the distance. Several minutes later a train passes by sounding its whistle in the distance. I close the blinds and get into bed.