I know that I’m only a few chapters into my other current story, “Freak Show,” But the idea for this story has been in my head for over a year now and I really wanted to start working on it. The scope of the story’s universe and its characters is quite large and would make for a giant story that I probably wouldn’t finish with its end so far away. Instead, I’ve decided to break it up into various stories that contribute its own plot. So, I introduce to you my new series, “The Winding Road” and its first part, “The Party.”
Part 1 of the series, “The Winding Road”
“The Party” by Rocky (Saywhat1147 on this forum)
Life is like a winding, mountainous road. As you go through life, you think everything is going a certain way and that everything is under control, but then, without warning, the direction changes sharply and your journey is taken elsewhere. At times, life is difficult, as its metaphorical incline steepens and wears you down. At other times, the road takes a dip and the necessary effort lessens. You should be careful, however, since at these moments, it’s easy to not pay attention, slip up, and fall down life’s treacherous slopes. Then, there are the times where you can look down the mountain and see where you came from, all the twists and turns you’ve endured. The winding road works in a funny way. Although you travel a long distance, at any moment, you’re not too far away from where you’ve already been.
In the end, the journey leaves you tired and desperate for rest. Some end up where they aimed to go while others realize that they went the other way. However, at this point, you will realize that it is not the destination that is important, but the time you spent on your journey. All the decisions you made at every fork in the road about where you would go were not that important. Ultimately, all that matters is the company that you brought with you for the ride, because at the end of the trip, before you close your eyes for the awaited rest, they will be the last thing you think about.
- Friday, September 6th, 2013 -
It was Friday night and it was time for the students of Ashvale University to let loose after their first week of classes. Nathan Cook carefully navigated through the masses, holding his beer up in the air in attempt to prevent any of the precious liquid from spilling out from the red plastic cup. It was the first house party that he and his roommates ever threw and he couldn’t have been happier with the results. The majority of the party was up in the attic, above the second floor. They had a plethora of colored lights accompanied by a few strobe and black lights to set the party mood while their brand new sound system blasted music that was sure to get their guests dancing. Down on the first floor, the music was covered up by the shouting and laughing of the people playing beer pong or sitting on the couches, socializing. Yet, Nathan knew the music was still pumping as the walls shook with every beat the subwoofer produced.
Finally, Nathan got to the door of his bedroom. He unlocked it with his key and proceeded to enter and locked the door behind him. He then made his way to his personal mini fridge that he kept from his dorm room and took out a couple bottles of liquor. The night was still young, Nate and his roommates thought they could earn a couple extra bucks if they sold shots and mixers up in the attic to appeal to those looking for something harder than beer.
Nate took the cap off the bottle of rum and took a couple gulps and chased it down with his beer for good measure. He walked over the mirror to make sure his hair was just the perfect amount of messy.
“Okay Nate,” he said to his own reflection. “Tonight’s the night you get somewhere with the ladies. No more Mr. Awkward.” He had never had much luck with women and never had a serious girlfriend. He wasn’t what one would call hot, but he wasn’t ugly. He was just average, and he was okay with that. The thing that Nate lacked was confidence. He never really considered that any girl would like him the way he liked them so he never really tried with too many girls anymore. He wasn’t afraid of rejection. After all, not asking is just another form of rejection. He just didn’t like to put those he liked in an awkward position having to turn him down. Tonight, though, he hoped that alcohol would give him some liquid confidence, but just enough to make a good connection with someone. He did not want to take it too far.
“It’s been two years,” Nate said, again to himself, as his thoughts drifted in another direction, “She is way out of your league and you’d never have a chance with her. She may have been super nice to you, but that’s just who she is. She’d never date you, especially if she found out about your little secret. Besides, you probably will never even see her again, so don’t let her keep dragging you down. There’s plenty of fish out there, you just have to go out there and see who you’ll meet.” With that, Nate took another gulp of rum and headed back out to the party to bring the bottles up to the bar.
A couple hours later, Nate was drunk. He wasn’t wasted, but his coordination was definitely not very good. He was having a blast, though, between dancing, or at least his attempt to dance, and getting to know people better. It was only about 11 P.M. and guests were still arriving, so he knew that he had a lot of partying ahead of him. He did not consider that a bad thing, either. Besides, he was just warming up at the beer pong table.
He had won three games straight with Ryan, one of his roommates, as his partner. This game, however, was a bit challenging. They had only hit two cups while their opponents had already sunk five. All the liquid that Nate had drank that night was starting to go through him and as his need to pee increased, he found it harder and harder to concentrate. Not only was he inaccurate, he was also imprecise. He missed left, then right, too far, then too short. Unfortunately, Ryan wasn’t having any better luck, either. Their opponents continued to sink cups, forcing him to take more and more drinks from his beer. which did not help the situation. With every drink that he took, it felt like the pressure on his bladder was increasing. Still, he knew he could hold it and he didn’t want to leave the table in the middle of a game.
Once his opponents only one cup to make left, their hot streak had come to an end. They were missing the lone cup as badly as Nathan was. Still, with six cups left for Nate and Ryan, there was little hope for a comeback. Nathan just wanted his opponents to make the cup so he could go to the bathroom. It was starting to get harder and harder for him to hold his bladder and he started to hop from foot to foot, making his discomfort quite obvious.
Finally, the other team made the cup. Nate quickly downed the rest of his beer and headed for the bathroom. He would have run if he could, but the pressure on his bladder was so great that doing so would let it all loose. Once he got to the bathroom, he noticed that the door was locked. He knocked to see who was inside.
“Occupied!” The lady’s voice said through the door, “I’m just fixing my makeup!”
“Well could you hurry, please?” Nate yelled in desperation, “I have to go really, really bad!”
“You can wait a minute.” The girl responded with attitude. “What, are you going to piss your pants like a three-year-old?”
Nathan didn’t appreciate the last comment. He thought of going upstairs to the other bathroom, but did not think that his bladder would survive the journey. He just had to wait. He just had to dig down and put all his concentration on keeping his pants dry. It didn’t help that the commotion drew a lot of attention towards him. People already had their phones out and were recording video in case he pissed himself. This was the last thing that he needed. He wanted to become more of a social butterfly this year and wetting himself like a little kid would not get him anywhere. He was at the mercy of the lady in the bathroom and it seemed like she was taking an eternity. Finally, just as Nathan had lost hope and was just about to lose control, the door opened and the young women exited. Nathan rushed inside, slamming the door behind him, ran to the toilet, and finally relieved himself.
As Nate left the bathroom, he felt much better. Not only was his physical anguish gone, but also the emotional stress of the possibility of humiliating himself in front of everyone on the first floor. With his happiness restored, he thought that he could use another shot and decided to head upstairs. As he walked around the corner, however, he ran into Ryan.
“Nate! There you are!” Ryan exclaimed excitedly in his drunken state, “Someone’s here to see you!” That puzzled Nathan. All his friends from school were already at the party. Anyone who just arrived would only know him as an acquaintance from a class or a similar situation. He didn’t think that anyone from his family would drop by this late, either, so the visitor remained a mystery to him until he was attacked by a bubbly girl giving him a giant hug.
“Nathan! It’s been such a long time since we saw each other!”