The party was, I think, that May. The time had blurred into early hours–two, three, four in the morning. I think. Time to sleep, and wait out our hangovers. The bedrooms were taken. They always were. Well, maybe they weren’t, but the doors were closed and we’d heard whispered stories of the times when people opened them to check for vacancy. The last two parties, I’d gotten lucky enough to stretch out on a couch with other early sleepers, not giving so much as an inch for any drunken bodies wandering, searching.
None of those times were worth writing about, though. This time I was with the people who stayed up late, skittering from room to room chatting, searching for a social sanctuary, holding fingers to our lips for fear of waking prone victims of vodka and gin. We ended up in the den. Or parlor. Or whatever you call it. Whatever they, I mean the people that lived there, called it, we were in there, and that’s where we eventually slept.
I’d guess it was an hour later that we snapped out of warm alchohol slumber to a battle cry from the next room, something triumphant and defiant, like the belting of Rossini’s barber. A moment later it was a song, ringing loud throughout the first floor. The next moment it became definite: two voices passionately joined in the first verse of “I, Don Quixote”. The voice of the knight errant sallied quickly in our direction.
Through the bathroom, the TV room, and around through the kitchen and dining room came Patrick and Patrick, our Men of La Mancha, nude and grinning. They finished the first chorus in the den and moved on.
That morning we had breakfast at the Mini-Gourmet. I had a cigarette-smelling five dollar bill; it bought me a plate of hash browns and eight cups of coffee, each with the same definite, unfortunate bottom. They told me it was one bottomless cup, but I had my doubts. The Metro found its way to the table. We took turns reading ‘Something Wild’: eccentric personal ads, hidden in the paper’s back section after pages of rent-a-girls. A man headlined his ad “SLIPPERY RECTAL EXAM”. I don’t remember it all, but I’ll summarize: “SWM seeks anything with an asshole. Cargo room preferred.” The real ad was juicier. Maybe that’s a bad word to use in the context.
Since I left them, I’ve picked up the Metro once or twice and flipped to the back. “Something Wild” is gone, but the girls are still around. One of them’s been in there for a year or more now. Patrick had a collection of “Vixen Fyre”’s ads on his fridge, last time I saw him. Every month, Vixen got a new face, a different neck, smaller or larger eyes, a change in ethnicity, but always kept her hair colored and ironed. She sometimes wore glasses to hide bloodshot or blackened eyes.
Someone suggested when we were out once that Vixen was a metaphor for something. I said she was really just a whore, that’s all.