The alarm went off twelve minutes past eight in the morning and she woke with a startle that shot through her body and made her toes hurt. The room was cold since she liked to sleep with the window open. It was sunday and she was hungover and had five missed calls on her phone.
She rolled over and slept for another five hours until she woke up more tired than ever to the relentless tapping on her window. The sun was now setting and it was still cold in her room and the fog was returning, rolling over the mountains with the calm sterness of the dark ocean from which it came. She knew it was him without looking behind the curtains.
Him, who had called her five times since she went home last night and then ten more times. He was an idiot with some serious emotional problems and an obscure mix of extreme confidence and deep-rooted insecurity. He had always a week-old beard, never a clean shave, and she hadn’t found any razors or scissors in his appartment, not even in the kitchen drawers. When she asked him drunkenly why he liked her, he said that she also wore only black jeans, just like him. He asked her the same question and she said it was because he cared so deeply about marine biology and because he was an adequate skater: not very good, but he could certainly roll down the steepest and longest hill in the city without falling. Even when the ground was shiny from frost.
She fucking hated that skateboard. The first time she saw him, she was late for class again, and walked as fast as she could without sweating or breathing too much. She saw him from afar as he came rolling fast. He looked at her and she looked back in anger until she could distinguish his facial features, but then he looked ahead of him at the road and she gathered up a big amount of spit and it rocketed onto the pavement. She found this so embarrassing it would make her curl her toes and bite her lips for the rest of her life whenever she thought about it. She never mentioned anything of it later, and neither did he, but she was never sure if that was because he hadn’t seen it or because he also found it painfully awkward.
The day after she saw him for the first time, she was off to a supermarket to buy caramel ice cream for her purging. She saw him from afar this time too, but he didn’t look at her now. Instead, she watched him so intently she bumped into a red toyota corolla in the empty parking lot and startled an unfaithful father of three and his east-european prostitute. Everytime she ate that caramel ice cream and stuck two fingers back in her throat, she thought of him and the unfaithful man and the poor prostitute.
Finally she saw him at the university library, he stood at the desk and had some kind of argument with the library lady. She stood nailed to the ground for a solid three mintues, staring intensely at him, thinking of how much he disgusted her. He was terribly good-looking with the unoriginal fashionable beard and the pretentious flanel shirts and the annoying black jeans and she had never thought in her wildest dreams that she would fall this hard for that guy. Then, she proceeded to ask a guy out for the first time ever. She was twenty years old and she had never uttered the words “will you go on a date” before.
He looked at her and crooked his mouth and said “sure” before giving her his phone number and a distant smile. She kept her texting neat and spartian and he put at least one smiley instead of a period at the end of his sentences. They had coffee and went to see a movie and she said “I’m sorry I picked up such a bad movie for our date”. He put his arm around her and she smelled his sweat and anti-perspirant. Her vision darkened as he covered her face with his. After that, she had no problem talking. In fact, she found it lighter to talk to him than with any girl friend she had ever had. They went to his place and she slept there for four days until she had to go home and get clean clothes and he followed and they slept at hers for the weekend.
He tried to show her how to skate and she did surprisingly well, until she asked herself if she was happy now, and she swerved and fell on the cold asphalt and scraped her hands and her right cheek and she got a hole on her favorite pair of black jeans. She didn’t eat caramel ice cream anymore and she didn’t bend over the toilet and puked until she thought she was gonna die. She felt as solid like the devil and stared at people with fire in her eyes. She was bulletproof and gave herself away as if she had built herself only to this time in her life. She showed him her movies and played songs she had downloaded and told him about her strangest nightmares and about the people she had slept with. He showed her how to skate and slapped her butt when they were naked in the bathroom and he told her about when his grandmother died and she realized she didn’t care. She couldn’t make herself attached to his passed grandmother, her scents, her voice, the way she used to walk. He only talked about her sometimes after they had sex, and then he talked about her and nothing else until he fell asleep. She got up careful not to wake him and opened the cupboards and drawers in his appartment and looked for a razor or scissors. Instead she found his stock of cigarettes and smoked them at the table and cooked coffee before he woke up.
She hadn’t told any of her friends about him but he clearly had. He had also forgotten to ask her if she actually wanted to come to the party. He looked surprised at first when he realized she was completely ignorant of their plans, but then he got happy and explained absent-minded that he felt as if she was a part of him and that she had always been there and that he actually felt like she always knew what he was thinking. She started sweating and was very happy that the bus was so full they couldn’t look straight at each other.
His friends were super nice and she was being a dick and drank one bottle of red wine and three glasses of whiskey. She opened the kitchen drawer and took out a pair of scissors and stuck them in her back pocket. He took her by the hand and locked the bathroom door and fucked her against the wall. The music was too loud for anyone to hear them, and he didn’t hear the scissors that fell to the ground. They shared a taxi back home with two girls and he fell asleep immediately. It took her only ten minutes to cut it off. Then she walked three hours to get home. She had considered breaking his skateboard but she realized he couldn’t make her pay for his lost facial hair.
He had now started yelling at her from outside the window. Fear filled her from top to toe and tickled her skin like the feet of a thousand spiders. She got up and drew away the curtains. She didn’t say anything. Yet, instead of becoming angrier and more frustrated, as she thought he would be, he started smiling and laughing and she hated him more than ever. She imagined herself getting stabbed in the gut until she felt calm and opened the window. He climbed in and laughed, and threw her on the bed before starting to make coffee.