It’s a cool fall day and you’re new in school, new in town, new to adulthood. You smile to yourself as you pass the old buildings and hand planted trees. This is the time of freedom and self sufficiency, time to grow up and shed the old you. You are prepared with your boots and scarves that make you look sophisticated yet trendy. It is then that you see him. He’s nothing near the conventional standard of good looking. He’s lanky and scruffy, his head may be a little too big for his body. Yet you notice he dresses in button ups and carries books, real books! He’s smart and funny in a quirky way. You exchange glances and then you part ways.
You are walking with your friends to a party, nothing too fancy just an apartment get together. When you arrive it is hot and cramped and you want to leave. Then you see him, he walks around talking and smiling to all the people he knows. Then he walks up to you and says one simple word “bourbon?”. You take a swig of the brown liquor he’s holding out to you and you do your best not to wince as it slides down your throat like molten lava. You lie through your teeth and say it’s so delicious. Then he smiles. He’s impressed. The night continues and you don’t talk.
Finally it is time to take your drunk friends home and you start walking home. He joins, wanting to leave as well. You’re both slightly annoyed by the drunk people and start talking. You talk about literature, you have found someone who loves reading as much as you do and you’re pleasantly surprised. He’s pretty drunk now at this point but the conversation is fantastic. Though you wonder if he is always this feminine, you find it cute. He almost walking in front of a car and you stop him. He looks at you with a brilliant smile and thanks you for saving his drunk life.
Then it starts to pour. You have about a mile to walk and you are cold and wet but so happy. Finally you get back home and invite him to stay so that he wont have to walk in the rain home. He accepts. You lay in bed and talk for hours, smiling and laughing. Finally when it is time to sleep you jump into your roommates vacant bed and allow him to use yours.
He wakes you up early the next morning, you are not a morning person but for him you are. He makes you food and you hang out all day and it is not long before you are communicating every day. He hasn’t asked you on a date yet and you’re getting nervous. You make the move, you’re sly about it and you ask him to show you a good bookstore since you are new here. He agrees and your date begins. Donuts and books and intellectual discussion follow. You can’t believe everything has gone so smoothly. You end the day sitting on a roof of a building, overlooking the city and he says what you have been dying to hear, “I really like you.” He says confidently. You shyly admit to having feeling for him and then your heart races as he asks to kiss you. The moment couldn’t have been more perfect and in a split second it’s over.
You can’t stop smiling and listening to love songs you pretend to hate. Life is wonderful, he is wonderful. You’ve forgotten what it’s like to be wanted by someone and you’re addicted to it. You crave every word that comes out of his mouth. Your friends love him and you love his friends. Parties are great and in the second week of dating you have sex. You do not make love, that’s for clingy girls. Mature girls have sex, for pleasure. It’s ok but he gets bored and you’re left feeling insecure. Why was he bored? Why weren’t you good enough? You try harder, having sex more and more. It’s not fun for you and he likes it at first but then bored again.
The stress is getting to you and he starts critiquing your literature choices. He challenges you on your opinions but not in a stimulating way. You’ve always prided yourself on your wits, since you were young. Then he speaks and you feel dumb. You want to prove yourself to him so you read his favorite authors. It’s not your style but you trudge on, you try so hard to be smart for him. To him you are an infant who knows nothing.
Weeks past and you’re at your wits end trying to impress him. To make the one who can’t fall in love, fall in love with you. He ignores you now and you don’t know what happened. You get him to take you home and you try to be romantic but he sleeps at the edge of the bed and all you can do is stare at the cold, dark ceiling and pray it wont happen. Hope it wont happen. Make it not happen. It happens. He says what no one wants to hear. He’s over you. You mean nothing to him. Just like that he’s on to the next and you’re left crying into your books. You aren’t so smart anymore.