“You were good! You wanted it. You were begging for it. You said you enjoyed it. You were okay. You were happy. Trust me. Trust me. Trust me? No?”
It is eight hours since I saw your face quite clearly in my head. Clearly. Not blurred. Not inebriated, I was. Not drunk, I was. Not shaky. Not un-sorted. Not un-firm. Not un-clear. Eight hours. What happened? Eight hours. What did I do? Eight hours. I do not remember. Eight hours. Tell me, please do.
Eight hours. There’s slit packets under the pillow. Eight hours. My clothes in the hedge between the wall and the bed. Eight hours. There’s a snoring man beside me. Eight hours. Tell me, instead.
“Drink up! Drink up! Here’s a drag. Drink up! Didn’t you tell me you had this capacity? Drink up! Be a man.”
Did I scream with joy? Did I mumble in disgust? Did I shake my head in denial? Did I nod, did I protest? Did I sing? Did I not utter a single word? Did I tell you I understand what is happening? Did I tell you yes? How absurd! Does my being in love with you give you a license? Does my knowing you give me comfort? Does my agreeing to drink up give you this notion? Does it? I’m being curt.
It has been ten days since. Ten days. I do not remember. Ten days, it has bothered me. Ten days, I’m trying to write that story. Ten days. Those eight hours. Nothing. Nothing. Nothing.
Cigarette butts. Shorn weed. Two tiny bottles of gin. Gin! My favourite drink. Gin. Boxes of food. We had takeout? Was the food good? Did I eat? Did I like it? There’s that filter on the floor. The one you said catches all the tobacco, gives out only the good smoke. “Take it in. Take it in. Open your mouth. Take it. Here. You like it? Can you hear me? Do you like it? Damn you!”
“Drink up! Drink up! Here’s a drag. Drink up! You want to go lie down? What a pussy. Drink up! Lie down? I’ll come join you. In a moment. Let me see the others off. Drink up! Be a man. Chug that. Inhale this. Don’t worry. Do how much you can.”
Ten days. Eight hours. Trust me. Take it in. I ask you.
Was there consent?