The Importance Of Friendships
It’s freshman year and my mom helps me move cross-state from Colorado to Nebraska, unload my stuff in giant rolling laundry carts into McGloin Hall, my home for the next nine months. McGloin is supposed to be just for sophomores, but I waited until the last minute with the application, all the freshman dorms filled up so they stuck me in, too. It’s half-reward, half-punishment. Newer and nicer but isolated, tucked and hidden behind …show more content…
We eat an awkward welcome/goodbye barbeque lunch with our parents and then we’re left to ourselves in McGloin, marooned on the second floor, what’s supposed to be a common room that apparently doubles as an overflow for wayward freshmen. Ryan and Tom are from Nebraska, close enough to leave campus for family dinners, visits with high school friends. So on the weekends it’s just me and Seth, a Chicago kid with the strangeness and attitude to prove it. We have two primary activities: we drink, and we play racquetball. Sometimes, but not necessarily always in that order. Seth has a fake ID and we find our mecca at Bucky’s gas station off of Dodge Street. Twelve-packs and pints of vodka for less than ten bucks. God bless America, or at least …show more content…
Somehow I make it back and into the room, both Ryan and Tom there too, for once, both sleeping until I crash in, waking them up.
Are you okay? they want to know. Where’s Seth? But all I can do is slur and mumble in response, crawl in bed and fall asleep.
* * * *
Something’s happened. Bianca stops texting, passes us by in the dining hall with just a smile and hello. I ask Seth about it and he tells me nothing, man. Nothing happened. I try to ask her about it, track her down outside the library but she won’t say anything, just makes quick small talk and says she has to go. She’s really busy but let’s hang out soon, okay? It goes on like this for weeks. I don’t know what else to do so I keep playing racquetball with Seth, keep drinking. We stop going to Kiewit.
* * * *
Jasey corners me one night at a party, yelling over the music that I need to talk to Bianca. When I ask her why she just slurs something about Seth, stumbles away before I can ask anymore.
I catch her outside of Kiewit at dusk, the campus fading blue and hazy orange, dry air sweeping over the cool green grass reminding me of high school nights back in Colorado, Bianca on the dance and cheer teams, me the weird loner she for some reason agreed to hang out with. She’s coming from the library now, books to her chest. Tries to brush me off but this time I won’t let