“They’re here!” I whispered, more to myself than to anyone else. I was peeking out of the front entrance window, as I saw the rental car pull into the end of the driveway. I grimaced to myself. The dread and exhaustion was already setting in. My parents had failed to tell me that Miriam was coming with Tom for Thanksgiving until this morning when I got to their house. I had prayed they would’ve broken up by now. I thought that if he saw all of the girls his age at Purdue, that he would’ve found a better option.
Apparently Miriam had moved to Indiana with Tom. Annoying.
I also was severely hung over, which definitely was not helping my mood. Thinking back to the reason I was hung over, drew my thoughts back to the previous night and everything that happened. I audibly groaned, picturing Amanda’s lips pressed against Chase’s.
When I walked out and saw them pressed together, I could immediately tell that it wasn’t something Chase wanted. He was clearly shocked and her gesture unwanted, as his eyes were wide open and his arms were quickly grasping her upper arms pushing her away. I actually laughed lightly, for only a moment, because of how horrified he appeared. His eyes darted over to where I was standing, still holding the door open. He pushed past Amanda without giving her any sort of regard, heading towards me.
“Chase, wait!” Amanda called after him. “You know you don’t regret that.”
She grabbed his upper arm to stop him and I saw his eyes instantly ice over. He turned around and I heard him growl, “Let go of me, right now, Amanda. You were, and are, out of line.”
I felt frozen by my surprise and confusion. I didn’t understand why he was alone with her. But then again, he had every right to be. We weren’t a couple.
Unfortunately/fortunately, we didn’t talk about it. I had turned and walked back into the bar, with Chase hot on my heels. When I got back to the table, I downed the rest of my drink as Chase was saying that he wanted to explain.
I turned to him, wiping the remnants of the drink from the top of my lip. “No,” I slurred. “Now is not the time.”
His shoulders dropped, but I think he realized that that was probably for the best, based on the amount of alcohol in both of our systems. “Okay. Let me drive you home.”
“No. I’m going to take a taxi.” I knew he was fine to drive. He had drunk about a third of what I had. He also had followed the smart drink ratio of one adult beverage to one water.
He lightly placed his hand on my lower back. His voice turned firm. “Aleah, I’m not letting you take a taxi. I promise we can talk about this at another time, but I’m driving you back to your apartment. I want to ensure you’re safe.”
I obliged. The ride home was quiet. I actually almost fell asleep. Everything was spinning, and I was starting to feel a bit nauseous. Chase took my keys from me and opened up the building door and my apartment door and helped me in. I vaguely remember him helping me to my room and kissing my forehead.
I literally had dragged myself out of bed around 9:30 a.m., electing to shower and ready myself for the day at my parents’, because I sure wasn’t feeling up to it, yet.
I had to pull over next to a field on the way there to throw up, but knew there would be an egg casserole waiting for me, because that was my mom’s traditional holiday breakfast that she made. After hurling, I felt tons better.
And now, although hung over, I wasn’t feeling deathly, but was not looking forward to having Miriam present.
I knew that Bart and Nancy (uncle and aunt) and their children would be coming over, too. So would my grandpa and grandma (on my dad’s side). My dad had other siblings, too, but Christmas was the big get together where everyone would be making effort to get together. A couple of the families spent Thanksgiving with the in-laws or traveled.
I went to my room to shower and get changed, bracing myself for the day to come.