Coby shook his head slowly and smiled. “I can talk all night long, motherfu—”
I stood. “Coby! Sit your ass down!” I said, pointing to his chair. He sat. “I said it wasn’t him, and I meant it! Now everybody calm the f**k down! I’ve had a bad day, I’m here to drink, and relax, and have a good goddamn time! Now if that’s a problem for you, back the f**k off my table!” I closed my eyes and screamed the last part, looking completely insane. People around us were staring.
Breathing hard, I glanced at Trenton, who handed me a drink.
One corner of his mouth turned up. “I think I’ll stay.”
MY PHONE CHIRPED FOR THE THIRD TIME. I PICKED IT UP from my nightstand to take a look. It was a text from Trenton.
Get up, lazy. Yeah, I’m talking to u.
“Turn off your phone, ass**le! Some of us have hangovers!” Raegan yelled from her bedroom.
I clicked it over to silent and put it back on the table to charge. Damn it. What was I thinking, giving him my phone number?
Kody lumbered down the hall and peeked in, his eyes still half shut. “What time is it?”
“None of your business,” I said, turning over onto my side. Kody chuckled, and then he began banging around pots and pans in the kitchen, probably getting ready to feed his ginormousness.
I sat up, letting my legs dangle off the side of the bed. I had the entire weekend off, something that hadn’t happened since the last weekend I took off to see T.J.—and he canceled. Back then, I had cleaned the apartment until my fingers were raw, and then washed, dried, and folded all of my laundry—and Raegan’s.
I wasn’t going to mope around the apartment this time, though. I looked over at the pictures of my brothers and me on my wall, next to a picture of my parents, and a few of the drawings I’d attempted in high school. The black frames were a stark contrast to the white walls throughout the apartment. I’d been working on making it look more lived-in—buying one set of curtains with every paycheck. Raegan’s parents got her a gift card to Pottery Barn for Christmas, so we now had a nice dinnerware set and a rustic, mahogany-stained coffee table. But the apartment still mostly looked like we’d just moved in, even though I’d lived there going on three years, and Raegan more than one. It wasn’t the nicest property in town, but at least the neighborhood had more young families and single professionals than loud, obnoxious college kids, and it was far enough away from the campus that we didn’t have to deal with a lot of game day traffic.
It wasn’t much, but it was home.
My phone buzzed. I rolled my eyes, thinking it was Trenton, and leaned over to check the display. It was T.J.
Miss you. We should be snuggling in my bed instead of what I’m doing right now.
Cami can’t talk right now. She’s hungover. Leave a message at the beep. BEEP.
You went out last night?
You expected me to stay home and cry myself to sleep?
No, keep feeling bad. It’s really okay.
I want to hear your voice, but I can’t call right now. I’ll try to call tonight.
K? Seems like a waste of a text.
Work seems like a waste of a weekend.
Don’t worry, the groveling will be sufficient.
T.J. was difficult to stay mad at, but he was impossible to get close to. Granted, we’d only been dating for six months. The first three were amazing, and then T.J. was assigned to head this critical assignment. He warned me what it might be like, when we decided to try to make the distance work. It was the first time he’d been put in charge of an entire project, and he was both a perfectionist and an overachiever. But the assignment was the biggest he’d ever worked on, and T.J. wanted to make sure he didn’t miss anything. It—whatever it was—was important. As in, if it ended well, he would get a huge promotion. He mentioned one late night that maybe he could get a bigger place, and we could discuss me possibly moving out there the next year.
I’d rather be anywhere else but here. Living in a smallish college town when you’re not exactly in college isn’t that great. There was nothing wrong with the college. Eastern State University was quaint, and beautiful. I’d wanted to go there for as long as I could remember, but after just one year in the dorms, I had to move into an apartment of my own. Even if it provided a safe haven away from the ridiculousness of dorm life, independence came with its own difficulties. I was down to only a few classes a semester, and instead of graduating this year, I was only a sophomore.
The many sacrifices I had made to maintain the independence I needed was exactly why I couldn’t resent T.J. for making sacrifices for his—even if I was the sacrifice.
The bed dipped behind me, and the covers flipped up. A small, icy hand touched my skin, and I jumped.
“Damn it, Ray! Get your cold, nasty hands off me.”
She laughed, and hugged me tighter. “It’s already cooled off in the mornings! Kody is scrambling his dozen or so eggs, and my bed is like ice now!”
“Ew. Ew, ew, ew,” I said, covering my ears. “I did not need that visual this early in the morning. Or ever.”
“So who is blowing up your phone? Trent?”
I turned over to see her expression. “Trent?”
“Oh, do not play coy with me, Camille Renee! I saw the look on your face when he handed you that drink.”
I scooted back toward the edge of the bed, pushing Raegan until she realized what I was doing and squealed as she fell to the floor with a thud.
“I’m mean?” I said, leaning over the edge of the bed. “I didn’t toss a girl’s beer just because she wanted her table back!”
Raegan sat with her legs crisscrossed, and sighed. “You’re right. I was being a huge bitch. Next time I promise to put a cap on it before I toss it.”
I fell back against my pillow and stared up at the ceiling. “You’re hopeless.”
We both scrambled from the room, giggling as we fought to be the first one out the door.
Raegan sat on the stool behind the breakfast bar for about half a second before I kicked it over. She landed on her feet, but her mouth hung open.
“You are just asking for it today!”
I took the first bite of cinnamon and raisin bagel with apple butter, and hummed as the calorific goodness melted in my mouth. Kody had spent enough nights here that he knew I despised eggs, but since he made me an alternative breakfast, I forgave the putrid egg smell that filled up our apartment every time he stayed the night.
“So,” Kody said as he chewed, “Trent Maddox.”
“Looks like you already did,” Kody said with a wry smile.
“You’re both acting like I was all over him. We talked.”
“He bought you four drinks. And you let him,” Raegan said.
“And he walked you to the car,” Kody said.