by The Subterranean
The snow fell in a haze of flurries outside of Jason Mardel’s back window. It was eleven o’clock at night on a Sunday. He was starting to do a four page term paper that was due tomorrow. He created his title page in a haze of Red Bull and coffee. He would have started it sooner but he was too busy procrastinating.
There wasn’t really much to this college student. He was studying to be a philosopher. The paper was about a quote written by Confucius about wisdom. So far he had written only one word, The. He was not thinking straight.
Just at that moment, his roommate, Aaron Donaldson walked in.
“Man, are you still up?”
“This paper is half my grade.” he replied
“If you’re still up why don’t we go to this party that I happen to know of.” Jason had to laugh at the thought process of his roommate.
“I really have to do this.”
“Come on, you’re mind’s screwed up. The party will help you think straight.” Aaron did have a point.
“Fine, whatever” he got up from his chair, leaving one word typed. The.
They got in Aaron’s old beat up Volkswagen hippie van. It had served them well since they met at the beginning of Junior year. Aaron was twenty and Jason was nineteen both still juniors. There would be beer at this party. He wasn’t planning on drinking any though. The.
The party was halfway across town and the had to stop for gas. Aaron didn’t have any money, as usual, so Jason was forced to pay.
“This is ridiculous. I should be working on that paper.”
“Shut up about that. We’ll get you home in plenty of time for you to do it." Jason hoped he was right.
They arrived at the large house. They could feel the vibe of the bass under their shoes through the sidewalk. There was definitely a lot going on. People were screaming, laughing, and throwing up over the bannister of the porch. Aaron and Jason walked past, avoiding them. The.
Their first impression on the inside was nonetheless crazy. Jason saw a group of three people sliding down the stairs on an ironing board, screaming gleefully as they rammed into the wall. People were laying on the couches drinking and making out. It was so loud that Jason had to yell so his friend next to him could hear him.
“Shit man, it’s pretty loud. Maybe we should get out of-” But Aaron had disappeared into the crowd. All Jason could do was sit there like a deer caught in the headlights. The.
Jason wandered throughout the large house. He had never felt more awkward in his entire life. He recognized a few people from his dorm room but he didn’t know them enough to say more then “Hey, what’s up.” while a lot of people replied, drunk “Heeey, you’re Aarons roommate right, niiice.” they said in their slurred talk. The.
Meanwhile his roommate was just the freaking life of the party. All he could do was watch Aarons crazy-ass escapades. He had never seen this side of his roommate before. He had drunk so much Jason was wondering if he could even feel pain. The
Surprisingly, with all his other friends around Aaron walked up to his roommate.
“Man, yyoouu need a drrink.”
“Dude, you’re wasted.”
“It only seems that waay because yyyou are too sober.” He then proceeded to trip over his own feet. The
Aaron grabbed Jason a can of cheap beer from a cooler not too far away.
“I’m not going to drink this.”
“Come on drink it.”
“Buzzkill” This went on for about two minutes. Drunk Aaron is really annoying, Jason thought. Finally he took a swig.
“There, see it’s not too bad” Aaron said. Jason took another swig. The
At first the beer tasted like total shit, but as Jason got more and more wasted it began to grow on him. He had fun at this party. It had been a ages since he had a good time. At two o'clock AM the party was still going strong, but at that moment he had remembered that he had a paper to write. The
Jason had looked all over the house for his roommate. Finally he found him, in a bedroom, in the middle of having sex. Aaron abruptly stopped and covered himself up with bedsheets. Next to a beautiful brunette woman.
“What the hell, dude” Jason ignored him.
“I’m going back to the dorm to work on my paper.”
“Whatever” Aaron threw him the car keys not really paying attention to where they landed. Jason left and got in Aaron’s van. Drunk. The
Aaron arrived at his dorm building at Eight AM through a ride from a buddy. He was hungover and had very few hazy memories of what happened last night. All he remembered was having sex and giving Jason his car keys. He hoped that Jason wasn’t driving drunk. He figured Jason was responsible enough not to drink. The
He walked into the bright open light that was his dorm building. He arrived at his door and fumbled for his keys, but the door was already open. Did Jason forget to shut the door? He walked in and there were 3 men sitting on his worn fake-leather couch. The
“Are you the owner of a Green nineteen sixty-nine volkswagen bus with a licence plate HTP dash 201?” One of the men asked.
“Yes” Aaron replied anxiously.
“Did you lend that car to your roommate, Jason Mardel.”
“YES” Aaron was freaked out now.
“He crashed into a tree driving home from a party last night.” Another man stood up,
“The hospital did everything they could but he didn’t make it.” The man had a genuinely sad expression on his face. The first man started talking again.
“We ran some tests that conclude that he was under the influence of alcohol when he crashed.” he continued, “Did you know he was drunk when you gave him the car?”
“Maybe.” It sounded like he was covering something up when he said that but he really didn’t know. Apparently the officer didn’t want to deal with it right now.
“That’s a ticketable offence, we’ll see you in court” The three men left the room. The
Aaron felt more guilt then he could even believe. He let his friend drive drunk. His friend died, because of him. He was frozen in shock for a while, then he just started screaming. His dorm was on the first floor so he had a patio. Aaron walked outside.
“AAAAAAAAAGH” he yelled into the icy air as steam escaped his mouth.
“WWHHYYY” Aaron was depressed. He had killed his friend. He walked back inside his room. He started crying. Oh the pain, the agony. THE.
He looked over at his ex-roommates white laptop. There was a word document pulled up. It was the paper Jason was about to work on. In a way, this paper had killed Jason too. If it weren’t for this paper Jason would have came home from the party with Aaron, sober. But if it weren’t for Aaron he would have drove home sober to work on the paper. The
He realized he had heard Jason talk about the paper enough he knew what it was about. So he began to type out What Jason had started. He had typed like he had never typed before, with an energy that enveloped him into the computer as if it was a life or death obstacle course. He typed as if it would bring his friend back to life.
It wasn’t one word anymore it was an entire paper that started with the most important word of them all The. Aaron stopped feeling the guilt he had felt before, and then that just made him feel more guilty. Oh god, why. He found a thick rope hidden away in a drawer somewhere. He stood on top of the chair he had been sitting in before, when he wrote the paper. The. He tied the rope to the ceiling. The. In doing so he reflected upon every moment that had led up to this. The. He was filled with this huge intensity that he had never felt before. The. The chair fell to the ground in one sickening Thud.
“By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is noblest; Second, by imitation, which is easiest; and third by experience, which is the bitterest.” -Confucious
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