I’m looking forward to having some game time today with my best friend.
I straighten up the living room, check batteries in the controllers, grab the Code Red Mountain Dew from the fridge and the Doritos out of the pantry. Three games sit on the floor in front of the TV ready to be chosen.
A knock sends me flying to the door to answer it. I feel like a six-year old all over again, but I’m really in my early twenties and far too old to act like this. It’s just… I don’t have enough friends that I can feel as comfortable as I do with him.
I open the door, and he’s standing there with a bag hanging over his shoulder, and just past it, I can see his wife waving excitedly at me from their car . I wave with both arms high in the air, “Hi, Rho-rho!”
It’s taken me a while, but I’ve finally feel fine spending time with him. I have rules. His wife must know we’re hanging out. She’s my friend too. We’re all buddies.
Rhokesia never has any reason to distrust me. She and I talk all the time about the perfect guy. She knows my type: cool geeks. Antoine is neither of these things.
So we play the games. I drink over half the bottle of Code Red, as he drinks wine. I keep kicking his butt and punching him when he beats me. It’s all good fun.
“You’re just so cool,” he tells me. “You’re just like a guy!”
That’s what every girl wants to hear… I’ve been stuck in friendzone with so many of my guy friends. But I don’t mind him saying it, though, since it’s him.
His hand lands on my knee, “I wish I’d met you before I married.”
I push him away, mouth agape. You’ve just ruined it!
“You and I have so much in common. I have nothing in common with Rhokesia,” he continued.
“No,” I say standing up. Asshole! Nothing can ever be the same again.
“But I thought-”
I am not attracted to you! “No!” Come on, Mel. Say something real!
This complete disconnect from mind and mouth infuriates me. My face goes red, but I suck in a breath before finally speaking, “Antoine, you have to go.”
“No. That’s it. It’s over. You’re married!”
He nods his head, resigned, and I walk him to the door. “I can’t believe you would think-. You were my friend,” I say, preventing him from saying anything else.
As he crosses passes the front door, I see him turn to say something, but I slam the door in his face.
I cry for a moment in anger and frustration. How could he? I never did anything. I was just being me. Oh my god. I’m despicable. I did this. Somehow I caused this.
My hands shake as I lift my phone to get her number.
She has to know.
I stare at her name in my list and pause.
What if she blames me? I blame me.
I scrunch my eyes and take two deep breaths before closing my phone.
You just can’t see him outside of work anymore. It’s better this way.
I step away from the door and collapse on the couch. I guess single girls aren’t meant to be friends with married men.