Dinosaur Bones

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Literary Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
Part one of a slightly autobiographical story, very much inspired by the great writers of the Beat Generation and my own insane life.

Submitted: July 19, 2014

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Submitted: July 19, 2014

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It wasn’t until five drinks in that I remembered his face; apparently we’d been on a few dates since the new year started. I didn’t remember, of course, because there wasn’t a night that I’d been sober since Thanksgiving of that previous year. I was gazing intently into his sea green eyes, remembering that piercing and shocking color but not his name. His name. What the hell was his name?

We were at a bar a few blocks away from where I was staying at the time- my parent’s place, because the rent elsewhere was too high, and when the waiter delivered my sixth Jack and coke of the night, when a song on the jukebox suddenly erupted through the speakers, amplifying itself through the entire bar. It was a tune I had picked in a whim, just to make the night more interesting, a melody that made my heart crumple, my stomach twist into itself, my vision now clouded with sharp memories of a better time...

He leaned close to me and stole a kiss. I obliged.

I ordered another drink, realizing quickly that he was looking for more than kisses. I downed what I had in my hand, savoring the burn of alcohol in my throat, and excused myself; I took too long to find the fucking ladies’ room and found myself stumbling onto a stall devoid of any sort of gender connotation. I pissed, taking the time to re-evaluate my life while on the toilet. Head in my hands, the stench of who knows who’s piss in my nose, and yet I felt like I hadn’t reached rock bottom.Stepping out of the stall and washing my hands, looking in the mirror at the messy blonde hair and slightly smudged makeup that hugged my eyes, I still held fast to the confidence that rock bottom was just a mystical place people like to talk about to deter others from becoming alcoholics.

I was profoundly tipsy at this point in the night, speaking of alcohol. Walking back out to the table my date- James? Johnny?- was sitting at, I noticed that a few men turned their heads. They fucking better, I thought as I strode through the bar. I’d spent quite a bit of time perfecting the way I walk to attract the most attention and still let the men think I was uninterested. The right combination of how far your hips swing and how high your head is held makes a world of difference. I noticed my date smiliing gently at me, too, and I felt a sudden yet slight twist of shame that I couldn’t remember his name. That inkling of shame left me almost immediately.

Sitting down, he was sipping a beer and fiddling with a pen, scrawling numbers onto a stark white receipt. I stood above him, finishing the cocktail in my hand and making eyes at the guy a few tables away who was staring past his date. My man, whose name started with a K according to his signature on the tab, joined me in standing, took my hand, and led me out the door. It was the last thing I remembered until I woke up the next morning, still wearing half of my clothes and curled up on the bed as far as possible away from K. I had been dreaming about the man I loved, the man who broke my heart and haunted me day in and day out. I lay awake for a minute or two, remembering what I could about the dream- we had been in the apartment we shared, laughing over drinks and crackers whilst watching our one of our favorite films. I was sipping wine out of the bottle while he spent the night fixing himself whiskey and cokes. I was laughing at a joke he made... then we were smoking cigarettes on the balcony, still chuckling..It was oddly specific and completely accurate to how we had spent our nights together, which made me worry. Was I thinking too much about my former fiancé again? Or was this still a normal part of the breakup stage for me to be in?

The guy next to me stirred, and, out of fear that he was going to awaken soon, I softly slid out of the bed and gathered the bottom half of my clothes. Good thing he had left the bedroom door open, because every door had the potential to squawk and cry for attention. The apartment was silent save for a cat who had perched himself on a windowsill, following my motions with his enormous eyes. I dressed the remainder of myself  of the animal, gauging my hair and make-up with the silver plated toaster, and saw myself out without saying good-bye to the guy in the bedroom or his furry friend. The empty hallway greeted me with the same judgmental look I had gotten from both the cat and every hallway previous, and I continued on my way towards the stairs, trotting down them towards real life, before said judgment could burrow itself deep and make a home in the icy tundra of my heart.

The morning that I joined seamlessly into was cloudy and grey, yet busy and brimming with people. I had no sense of what time it was, but time as an institution was vaguely unimportant to me. I stood on the corner of the street for a few brief moments, choosing instead to talk a walk down to the pier rather than returning to my parents' apartment. Purchasing a coffee from a street vendor who had set up shop across from last night's watering hole and throwing some spare change into his plastic and grimy tip jar, I noticed the kindess in this man's eyes. He was very middle aged, with a warm smile that danced across his lightly crinkled face and begged for only one in return. I shyly granted him the request, cracking a sideways grin that mustered more strength than I cared to admit to even myself.

Coffee in hand, I soon found myself standing at the edge of the wooden boardwalk overlooking the shimmering body of water this town was built around. I closed my eyes and listened to the sounds of the morning. To my left, a gaggle of small children pestering their mothers for treats and longer tethers to play in the water. To my right, muffled silence and the promise of solitude.

I smiled, wider this time, and turned to the right, walking slowly into the strange land where my thoughts danced without chains and whips and consequence.


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