I stood at the bar in the Off Ramp, slowly peeling the label off of my bottle of beer. Across the room stood Layne and his new girlfriend, who up until half an hour ago, I had no idea existed. I could feel everyone's beady eyes staring at me, probably waiting for some kind of reaction, but I definitely was not the type of person to give them any kind of satisfaction. I mean, me and Layne had just been screwing around for a while before Alice had gone on tour, it wasn't like we were in love with each other or anything. The guys had all warned me about him, but whatever body part I was thinking with the night I saw him for the first time was definitely not my brain. Layne didn't owe me anything, but I would have at least expected him not to make me look like a fucking idiot. I knocked back the rest of my beer before I slunk out of the bar. I wasn't really in the mood for a party at this point, so I started to walk home. The guys are going to have a field day with this shit, I thought to myself.
I lived in a basement apartment a couple of blocks away from the bar that I had rented from a newspaper ad, sight unseen, a couple of months ago when I decided that I had had enough of Vancouver. The two upstairs apartments were rented by a bunch of band boys, and we had all made friends quickly, even though sometimes it felt like I had surrogate big brothers policing me now. I let myself in, grabbed a new pack of smokes and a bottle of beer, then went back out to sit on the porch. It wasn't long before I heard the ruckus coming up the street, letting me know that the guys were almost home. Mike and Eddie got there first, Mike giving me a big drunken hug on his way in while loudly proclaiming that Layne was a gigantic bastard. Eddie, still kind of new to the group, shot me a shy smile before rushing inside. Jeff and Stone followed a minute later. Stone had that damn smug look on his face, and before he could open his mouth, I told him that if he was going to tell me he told me so he could shove it up his ass. Looking slightly injured, he ran inside while Jeff flopped down beside me on the porch. "Smoking's bad for you, you know" he said, plucking the lit cigarette out of my hand and taking a long drag. "Thanks Dad!" I replied, rolling my eyes before I took a drink of my beer. "You should really be nicer to Stone, he's madly in love with you." I choked on the beer, launching into a massive coughing fit, as Jeff laughed at me hysterically. "Fuck off Jeff" I managed to sputter out in between hacks. "I'm serious! His heart was broken when you hooked up with Layne. He never had the balls to tell you." I shrugged my shoulders in disbelief. "Honestly Jeff, I think the only person Stone is in love with is Stone. Stop fucking with me." I said grinning. "Dude he told me himself! I would know this shit, I'm his best friend...maybe he wouldn't seem like such an asshole if you gave him a chance. Think about it." he said, winking at me before ruffling my hair and heading inside. I sat outside for a few more minutes by myself before going downstairs to my apartment. I wasn't really sure how to digest this news. I got changed and crawled into bed, my mind going a mile a minute. Stone was a good looking guy, but he did always seem to act like kind of a smug asshole towards me. We had started out fine, and then all of the sudden things got a little weird. Right around the time you started banging Layne, a small voice told me from deep inside my head. Jesus fucking Christ, Jeff wasn't kidding. I had no idea what I was supposed to do with this realization. I suddenly felt horrible for being so shitty to him, but I had honestly thought that maybe he just didn't really like me all that much and I thought I would return the favor. It wasn't lost on me that now, here I was lying in bed, thinking about Stone of all people. Did I like him back? Oh god this is like fucking high school. I tried my best to fall asleep, telling myself this was a problem for tomorrow me to worry about.
I mulled over the idea of him for a few days, wondering if there was more. I had to admit I was kind of curious. Saturday night rolled around, and I was spending the night in. I wrote freelance for a couple of small papers in the area, and I thought I'd see if I could come up with a few pieces that could get picked up. I could hear the guys practicing upstairs. Well I assumed they were practicing, as I heard music every few minutes punctuated by the sounds of them yelling at each other. I was lost in my head, when all of the sudden there was a loud bang outside and all of the power went out. "Fucking brilliant" I muttered to myself. I fumbled in the dark to the window, and when I looked outside I realized that a huge chunk of the city was dark. "Fuck, fuck, fuck." I almost launched myself over the coffee table as I tried to get back to my couch. I knew damn well that my dumb ass didn't own a flashlight, so I was out of luck there. I sat on the couch for about 20 minutes contemplating my new dark existence before someone started knocking on my door. "Emilyyyy" came a voice from the hall, as I made my way to the door, where i could see a slit of light coming from the crack underneath. When I opened it I found Mike standing there with a flashlight and a big smile on his face. "Don't sit alone in the dark, come upstairs! We have alcohol!" He didn't need to ask me twice. I closed the door behind me, and he helped me up the stairs with the flashlight. We went into the open door of Jeff and Stone's apartment on the first floor. "Hey girl!" Jeff exclaimed, handing me a glass that contained a ridiculously strong jack and coke. The room was lit up with a few candles, and I looked around for a place to sit. Of course the only seat left was on the couch right beside Stone, Jeff undoubtedly knowing what he was doing when he flopped down on the other end, leaving only the spot between them. It might have been kind of romantic if Stone had even bothered to acknowledge my existence. Instead he was focused on Mike, who was now sitting in the middle of the floor playing pretty terrible drunken covers of Def Leppard songs while Jeff and Eddie laughed their asses off. He was getting so into it that eventually even Stone had to laugh.
What had started out as a shitty night had ended up turning into an awesome one. We were all pretty roasted by the end of it. Everybody was either passed out or close to it, including Mike, who was sound asleep on the floor, spooning his guitar with a small smile on his face. I decided that I had better go back downstairs to my place and try to get some sleep. Stone opened his eyes when I stood up from the couch. "I'll walk you down." He said, grabbing a flashlight. "I can probably make it." I replied, as he rolled his eyes and pulled me by the arm towards the door. I ended up having to hang onto his arm on the way down the stairs, the drinks I had making it even harder to navigate through the darkness. When we got to my door, I turned around to tell him goodnight as I walked into my apartment. All of the sudden he was on me. I gasped in shock while my arms somehow made their way around his neck. He dropped the flashlight on the floor and kicked my door shut before pushing me up against the wall. Whatever else Stone was, he was definitely attractive, and I decided to just let any misgivings go and enjoy this. I dragged him down the hall to my bedroom. We made it to my bed, ripping our clothes off on the way. Both of us were way too wasted to even consider any kind of foreplay. He moved me down onto the bed, using his knee to ease my legs apart. He looked me right in the eyes and said "Tell me you want me". I looked up at him, eyes wide. "I want to know that it's me you want to fuck right now and nobody else." He was too fucking much, but I didn't want to stop now. "Fuck me Stone."