Terry and Andrew walked over to the bar to refresh their drinks. Terry considered getting something for Cerise but she seemed pretty involved in a conversation with Chrissy, which was probably a bad thing. He should really go over and intervene. But he didn’t want to get into it. What if Chrissy started freaking out or something?
“So what’s with Cherry bomb?” asked Andrew
“What do you mean?”
“You’re into nerds now?”
“She’s not a nerd. She’s cool.”
“The chicks don’t like her much,” said Andrew as he drank his beer.
“Tell me about it. Karine hates her. It’s hilarious.”
“So like, you’re just being funny? I mean you’re not actually into her, are you?”
“What if I am?” asked Terry, narrowing his eyes in annoyance.
“Seems kinda… pulled outa nowhere. She’s not even hot. I mean, I’d fuck her but… I wouldn’t go out with her.”
Terry felt a lurch in his stomach and he suddenly had a very strong urge to punch Andrew in the face. It was like in his hockey matches where he just needed to slam another guy into the boards. But he restrained himself and spoke through a clenched jaw. “Fuck you, man. I think she’s cute. And she’s got something.”
“I dunno. Something.”
“What do you mean?” Andrew pressed on, peering at Terry through his retarded wavy bangs.
“Why do you even give a shit?”
“I dunno, man. Just wondering.”
Andrew sauntered back to the pool tables and set up another game while Terry followed. He drank his beer and considered how to explain.
“She’s just… different you know? When she talks she actually like, says stuff.”
“You actually listen when she talks?” Andrew laughed.
“She’s interesting. She’s different. Kinda like a challenge.”
“Oh, you mean she’s a virgin,” Andrew nodded his head and smirked. “Ok, now I get it. Well, let me know if she was any good when you’re done.”
It took all of Terry’s powers of self-control not to smash his glass over Andrew’s head and shove him in the gut with a pool cue.
“Do you like pie?” Christina asked randomly. “I like pie. Too bad they don’t serve cherry pie here. Wouldn’t that be funny if they did? ‘Cause of your name! Get it?”
“Yes, I get it,” said Cerise through a clenched jaw.
“Oh my god, I’m so hungry! You know, you’re not so bad. You’re a good listener. I don’t know why I hate you so much.”
Cerise looked at Christina dubiously. Christina clutched her stomach and complained of hunger but then stood up suddenly.
“Oh my god, I think I’m gonna puke.”
She ran off and Cerise thought about getting up and joining Terry. She was angry that he’d been playing pool all night without her but what could she do? Any normal person would simply play with him and his friends but Cerise was too afraid to insert herself into their group.
As if to drive this point home, Karine plopped down into the chair Christina had abandoned and smiled bitchily at Cerise. “Having fun, Cherry?”
“What do you want?” Cerise shot back.
“What are you even doing here?”
“Why do you care? Don’t you have better things to do than hate me?”
“Yeah, I do,” Karine snotted. “Which is why I suggest you go back to your little life with your little friends and your little hobby of mooning over Jason Harris. He’s a little more in your league.”
Cerise couldn’t hide her surprise. She looked at Karine, stunned.
“Please Cherry, it’s so obvious you like him. I don’t know why you think you can get someone like Terry if you can’t even get someone like Jay.”
Cerise’s stomach lurched and she fought hard not to let her eyes well up.
Karine got up and leaned over Cerise. “Have a nice life, bitch.”
Terry kicked Andrew’s ass at pool and was setting up a game with Steven when Karine joined them.
“Having fun with your new girlfriend?” she asked.
“Lay off, Karine,” he said, not in the mood for another inquisition.
“Well it’s doesn’t seem like she’s having much fun.”
Terry frowned at Karine and looked at their table. It was empty. Had Cerise and Chrissy gone to the bathroom or something? Knowing Christina she was probably puking her guts out by now and Cerise was probably nice enough to be holding her hair back. But then Terry spied Cerise weaving through the crowd. She was walking towards the exit. Terry shoved his pool cue into Karine’s hand and sped off after Cerise. She was already outside.
Terry pushed open the door to the pub and saw Cerise standing at the bus stop across the street.
“Cerise!” he called out, running across the road.
“What?” she said, glaring at him.
“Where are you going?”
“How come?” He tried to put his hand on her arm but she pulled away angrily.
“Seriously? You can’t figure it out!? Maybe because I’m bored out of my freaking mind! Maybe because Christina was smoking in my god damn face. I don’t smoke. I don’t drink. I don’t go to bars. I don’t play pool. I don’t do any of this stuff.”
“Yeah, I know.” Terry couldn’t help smiling. She was clearly really pissed off but for some reason he found her even cuter when she was bitching him out.
“Oh, you know, eh?” she went on, her voice rising. “You managed to figure that out, did you? At what point exactly? When you were playing pool with Karine or when you were playing pool with Andrew? Or when you were drinking with Karine or when you were drinking with Andrew? Or was it when you were completely fucking ignoring me?”
Terry didn’t know what to say. She was totally right, he had ignored her all night. God, he was such a moron. “Fuck, I’m… I’m retarded.”
Cerise didn’t seem impressed by his non-apology. “This isn’t my idea of a good time, you know. Watching you hang out with your friends. And sitting around watching your friends being drunk at me. Or listening to them bitching me out.”
Cerise looked past Terry and lifted her chin. He turned around and saw Karine standing outside
Clydes, a smirk on her face. Terry turned back to Cerise and gently rested his hand on her shoulder.
“Cerise, come on, come back inside.”
“No!” Cerise yelled and shoved his arm away. “I don’t wanna be here anymore! I don’t wanna do this!”
“We can go somewhere else,” he suggested.
“No, I don’t wanna do anything with you!” Cerise turned away and started walking down the street, towards
Terry kept pace with her. “Please, Cerise. I’m sorry your night sucked. Please come back.”
She stopped but kept her back turned. “I just wanna go home.”
“Ok. I’ll drive you. Just let me go get my jacket and I’ll take you home.”
“I don’t think so!” Karine’s voice shot out.
Terry and Cerise both spun around to find Karine standing about a metre behind them.
“Karine, what the fuck?” demanded Terry.
“You can’t drive!” she said. “You’ve been drinking.”
“Oh for fuck’s sake!” Terry exclaimed. “Don’t give me a fucking PSA.”
Karine glared at Terry and crossed her arms. “Oh excuse me. Yeah, I’m really sorry my dad was killed by a drunk driver so I like, you know, think about these things.”
Terry sighed heavily. What a low blow to bring up her father’s death. It made him feel simultaneously angry and guilty. Karine turned around and walked back to the bar. Terry considered going after her but now the 211 was approaching and Cerise was rushing back to the bus stop. He tried to grab her but it was too late. Before he knew it, she’d climbed onto the bus and was gone. He walked back into Clydes and went straight to the table to grab his jacket. Karine was sitting there with a drunken Christina. He glared at her as he put on his coat.
“Don’t even talk to me, Terry,” she ordered.
“Me don’t talk to you?” he asked, incredulous. “Fuck you, Karine!”
Karine looked startled and Chrissy was downright shocked but Terry turned around and left the bar.