My Best Friend's Ex(7)By: Quinn & Meghan Quinn
Now, I live in a house I despise, a house that reminds me of everything I came so close to having. Something I may never hold in my grasp.
It’s like constantly coming home to a slideshow of devastation on replay. I fucking hate everything about this house. It represents loss. Darkness.
On a heavy sigh, I finish washing my body, turn off the shower, and towel off. Silence greets me as I sit on my bed, my head in my hands, trying to ease the tension building in the pit of my stomach.
So much fucking silence. Silence, a wife and baby should have smothered. Silence, a family—my family—would have filled, but is now possessed by a lonely, bitter fuck.
I couldn’t despise myself more.
“Three Old Fashioneds, heavy on the booze,” I call out to the bartender. I take a seat at the bar in The House of Reardon, a bar we frequent when we don’t want to be caught up in the college life in downtown Binghamton and just want a peaceful drink.
“Three?” Logan asks. He strips off his jacket and hangs it on the back of his chair.
“Adalyn is going to meet us here.”
“I thought she had to babysit her niece tonight.”
“Niece got the flu. Adalyn wanted nothing to do with that and I don’t blame her, especially since we already have to be around a disease pit on a daily basis.” I pull out my phone and start searching through my emails, hoping and praying for any kind of news on apartments.
“Hey, guys.” Adalyn sits next to Logan just as the bartender sets down our glasses. Logan hands the man his card to open a tab. He always insists on paying for our drinks since he saves mad money on rent, but Adalyn and I never leave the bar without slipping cash in his pockets. He never mentions it so either he pretends we never pay him, or he is beyond clueless and thinks his pockets grow money.
“Hey, Adalyn,” I mumble, not looking up from my phone. Rejection after rejection email hits me. “Ugh.” I black out my phone and rest it on the bar. “I’m never going to find a place. It’s official. I’m going to be homeless. Any luck on your end?” I ask Adalyn. We split up inquiries to help each other out with our workloads.
Adalyn shakes her head, but there is something in her eyes that says otherwise. I’ve known Adalyn for a while now, so I know when she’s lying because she does this thing with her lips where she presses them up toward her nose. Rather odd quirk actually.
“What aren’t you telling me?”
Adalyn takes a sip of her drink and then sets it back down on the bar. She holds her glass with both hands and stares at the liquid as she speaks. “I haven’t found anywhere for us to live.” She swallows hard. “But my sister offered me space in her basement for the rest of the semester.” Apology is written all over her face as she turns to me. “If there was more room, I would say you could stay with me, Emma, but the room is already the size of a closet and if it wasn’t free, I would turn her down so we could find a place together but . . . it’s free.”
My hearts falls to the sticky floor of the bar. Great. Adalyn has a place to live and honestly, I can’t even be mad at her. If I had the same opportunity, I would be saying yes before I could even blink in surprise from the offer.
“I’m sorry,” she says. “I’m going to help you find a place though, I promise.”
“It’s okay.” I sigh and lean back in my chair. “You don’t need to apologize, Adalyn. That’s one hell of an opportunity. You can save so much money until we graduate. I would be mad at you if you didn’t take it.”
“But what are you going to do?” Adalyn asks.
“I’ll figure something out.” I take a sip of my Old Fashioned. Whenever I drink with my friends back home, I have one drink, often because I’m too concerned with making sure none of them accidentally trip and fall into the bonfire. When I’m with my college friends, I drink. And tonight, I plan on drinking, and drinking a lot.
Logan nudges me with his shoulder. “The offer still stands to room with me.”
“And shack up in your bunk with you?”
“Wouldn’t be the first time we shared.” This time he wiggles his eyebrows and a blush creeps over my cheeks.