I hear the music. I thought it would be Unst. Unst. Unst. But instead, the music is matching up with the visuals, and I swear I hear Legs. Legs. Legs. And I see many of them. Everyone is in costume. No, everyone looks like they are sharing one costume. There is so much skin glowing in the dark, that it seemed like there wasn’t enough costume to go around. I’m not in costume. Purple shorts. Black spaghetti strap shirt. I’m in solids. Perhaps just being here is me being in costume.
I came with a crowd, and they’re fun, but I feel a step behind everyone. A Romanian is the only reason I haven’t been left behind yet. He knows i’m nervous. Before we walk into the club, he grabs my wrist, “Don’t worry. I won’t lose you.” And I smile, but I’m not sure about any of this. We walk up to the bouncer, he knows the Romanian. We walk in. No problem. I’m scared, but I don’t say so.
The ground is dirty. Drinks splash between my toes. I wished I wasn’t wearing sandals—I wished my feet were completely covered. Maybe that’s why all of these girls are wearing 8 inch heels, it gives them 8 inches of separation from the grimy floor. Oh wow, I understand heels now.
I can’t see anything. I can see everything. I can see too much. Where am I? I’m lost. I’m too slow for these people. I can’t pretend. My costume is disappearing. I just wanted to be held. I was falling a part. I started to look around. There were plenty of dark figures that would hold me. If I just fell into their arms, they would hold me. I could close my eyes and pretend. I could tell myself I’m safe.
But everything felt dirty. I couldn’t pretend. I wanted to be held by only one person, and he was somewhere far away, thinking of me, I hoped. Everywhere else but where he was felt dirty. Everyone else but him felt dirty. Why was I here?
I sat down.
“You’re gorgeous!” a man slurred. He slid his chair over to mine. I was waiting to leave, and in a way, I suppose he was too. I look at him. In the daytime, he was probably a decent man. Someone I would like to talk to.
“Where’s your boyfriend?”
“He’s dancing somewhere,” I lie.
“He’s not being a good boyfriend.”
“No, but I trust him,” I lied again.
“If I were your boyfriend, I would be dancing with you.”
“You’re gorgeous. Everything. You. Your face. Your body…”
“Did I tell you I’m extremely rich?”
I look at him. Seriously?
“Did you hear me? I’m very very rich. I could buy you a dress. Get you out of those shorts…”
“You think I’m just some guy, huh? You think I don’t know what love is. You think you’re better than me huh? You think…”
“No, thanks.” I said. The reply didn’t really make sense, but I didn’t want to listen to him anymore. After every word he spoke, he kept getting closer and closer.
“What? You want something to drink? Is that it? Anything you want. What do you want? I’ll go order it right now.”
“I don’t drink.”
His face turned red. He was getting angry. Impatient. Frustrated.
My legs were tired. I liked sitting. I couldn’t handle it for much longer though. The Romanian cut through the crowd. I stood up.
The “rich” man stood up.“Come home with me,” he grabbed my arm.
“Is this your boyfriend? Is this him? This is the guy? Oh my God. What a joke.”
The Romanian doesn’t even hear him, instead he looks at me. “C’mon. Let’s get you to sleep.”
We are driving back. He talks me into eating and drinking McDonalds for the sake of me surviving the morning. I feel guilty. I know he could have gone home with a handful of girls from the club, but he kept his promise and he didn’t lose me. He looks over at me and laughs. He shakes his head, he rubs his brows as all tired men do.
“Oh my God,” he sighs, “You’re just a kid.”