• Why am I here?

    Oh, that’s right, because John dragged me here. Almost against my will, but not quite.
    I did kind of want to come here, but it’s just not my kind of atmosphere.
    The thumping music, flashing lights, bodies smashed together; not my most ideal way to spend a Saturday night, especially when all those things are in some rundown building on the south side of town.
    I would much rather spend my Saturday night (or any night) with my significant other doing something that we both love to do.

    Sadly, I'm in between significant others at the moment.

    I had to get away though. I needed a distraction, something to take my mind off of her. John knew it, too, so of course he invited me to this place he heard about.

    Like a good friend.

    It was also an opportunity to put some effort into my appearance for once. Diana dressed me up in some uncomfortable jeans, a tight shirt, and put some gel in my hair. Now I look “Hot!”
    Then she had the balls to ask me, “Patrick, why don’t you always look like this?”

    I don't always look like a male stripper because I don't like to. I would like for people to notice my personality, but that's pretty much the opposite of what anyone in this hell whole would be interested in.

    I should just leave.

    It must be so obvious I don’t belong here.
    I take one last look at he huge crowd of people from the balcony I was on. All of the people were flowing together, kind of like an ocean. Diana stood out, her red hair caught the right amount of light to look like she wanted it to; on fire. Next to her, actually hanging off of her, was John. He was the clingy type and liked to ‘claim’ his girls.
    I should say bye to them, but I’m sure getting to where they were would be a waist of time and energy.

    I’ll just text John later.

    As I leave, I see a girl passed out on the stairs connecting to the balcony, and another girl trying to drag her down them.

    Definitely not my atmosphere.

    I shuffle through all the mangled bodies around the exit and finally push through a side door.
    After I got out of that dump, the cool night air felt good on my constricted lungs.

    Why did I ever quit smoking? I would kill for a light up.

    Crap, I quit because of her. Don’t think about her!

    Ok, I’ll walk home, it’s just a couple of blocks--

    What is that sound?

    Sounds like someone panting, and... whimpering.
    Then I hear, "Just a little, that's all. It'll only take a few minutes, then I'll be done."
    More whimpering.
    I hear a loud 'SMACK' and the person yell "Be quiet!"

    I turn, and on the other side of the exit there is a guy. Make that a really filthy guy with ripped clothes and mud all over him. He had something, someone, pushed up against a wall. A girl, pushed up against the wall.

    “STOP!” I hear her shout frantically, but he had a hand over her mouth that muffled the sound.
    Her eyes found me, and they got wide. She was telling me to save her, to get this guy off her.

    Say something. Do something.

    “Hey. HEY! Get off her!”
    I take long strides up to the guy, and shove him off the poor girl.
    He turns quickly and looks like he wants to knock the wind outta me, but thinks better of it. He looked way shorter than my 6’4 height, and at least thirty pounds lighter. I could do some damage, and it wouldn’t take long at all.

    Five minutes, tops.

    I muster up a dirty glare and send it his way. All the thinking he was doing ended, and he abruptly turned and ran.


    I take a look at the girl, and my glare vanishes.
    Besides the puffy eyes and disheveled appearance, she was beautiful.
    She had naturally blonde hair; you could just tell, it went well with her complexion.
    She had the biggest eyes I have ever seen, a blue-grey color from what I could tell. They were almost translucent. How did I not notice that before?
    She had a small nose and round cheeks sprinkled with small freckles.
    She had the kind of pout some girls had to buy, but the lipstick she was wearing was smudged all around her mouth.
    She wore jeans and a jacket, and I could see a faint rip in her shirt.

    Say something.

    She needs some comforting, or counseling probably, after that experience.

    “Are you aleight?” I ask softly, trying not to startle her.
    “I’m ok,” she replies quickly, too quickly.
    “Do you need me to call anyone?”

    She opened her mouth to answer, but before she could the door to the club opened.

    Startled, she took a step towards me. She smelled like some kind of flower. Her perfume was all that filled my nose, but not in an overpowering way. In a ’your all I want to smell’ way.

    Two people stepped out and walked up the alley, not paying any attention to what was happening on the other side of it.

    Like I had.

    I turned to face her again, only to see she was already looking at me.

    “Thank you. You really… really helped me out,” she says timidly.
    I smile, even though I probably shouldn’t have.
    Twenty-one, she has twenty-one perfectly placed freckles. I couldn’t help counting.

    You’re such a creep.

    “You’re welcome. Do you need to go anywhere?”
    She smiles faintly, and I see a glimpse of heaven; dimples.
    “I would like to go home. I live just North of here,” she says, nodding her head in the direction she was talking about.
    “No problem, I'll call you a cab. I’m Patrick by the way.”
    “I’m Riley.” She smiles wider, and her eyes crinkle at the edges just a little. I get a vague picture of what she would look like happy and safe.
    "Are you sure you're ok?"
    "Yes, I'm fine. No damage was done, I'll get over it," She says, then adds, "Thank you again. I really owe you one, you saved my a** back there. And...
    You've made me feel better already."