By James Brady
Goodbye sweet lady, goodbye
The door slams in such a perfect way, the connection between lock and latch is exquisite. He can't even find a way to hate her for materialising her false anger. Never has the ring of an aggressive shutting of a door sounded so fucking good.
Wonderful heels descend the stairs before another door is shut albeit with much more consideration. Even her false anger is already gone. She is over the whole thing by the time she makes it down the stairs. Tommy thinks briefly about trying out the same path as she has just taken, maybe by the time his lungs hit the brisk autumn air he would be totally over it. Happily banging one of the fantasies in the marketing department by weeks’ end.
He doesn't try though; his body doesn't let him move. Tommy is apparently under the power of some rip off hypnotist. He knows he can move if he wants to, he just can't at this present moment.
So he just sits slumped against the wall in his room, passively trying to replicate the album sleeves of heartbroken musicians he will no doubt invest himself in as part of the recovery process. He just needs a bottle of jack and he is good to go. He only has a half drunk beer in the fridge and baileys he had gotten for Christmas in the cupboard though. Soon the sickly cream hits his lips before he slams it down on the kitchen table.
A few hours later and Tommy awakes with dribble and tears on his pillow. Saturday afternoon has now turned to night and the darkness only makes potential movement harder. Tommy feels utterly hungover despite the fact that he hadn't drunk since Wednesday. Though predictably that is probably going to change in the next few hours.
Tommy picks up his quarter charged phone and spills the beans to friends. He is shamelessly looking for sympathy, no denial there. He will look back on himself in a few months and cringe in embarrassment at the desperate shell that is currently spread across his unwashed sheets.
Ah babe, so sorry to hear that, ring me if you need a chat xoxo
Plenty more fish in the sea mate! X
Fuck her mate come out with the lads and get your dick wet
I have some gear that'll make you forget every bad thought in your head, including her!
Mission complete, hollow sympathy gained.
Before Tommy knows it he is half cut bumping into people on a dance floor sound tracked by bands that tell him he shouldn't have bothered with love in the first place. He tells some poor soul his story of woe before they give up on the niceties and straight up tell him he is the human version of a comedown.
Shots momentarily lift his spirits and he soon clumsily spills his whisky coke over revellers too drunk to notice. Middle of the dance floor, looking around for instant gratification, an unbreakable band aid to the pain temporarily subdued by excess.
Saturday night. I am back.
Sod off body clock.
Tommy's head rings in pain and his stomach begins the process of surmising whether it wants to eject the majority of its content in his bleached toilet bowl. It isn't the hangover that he cares about though it’s his room.
It feels completely bare. Cold and empty to the point he just feels like breaking the law and nipping down to IKEA to fill it with the kind of modern furniture he scathed at on many hungover Sunday.
Why are you such a cynic about everything? Even reasonably priced Scandinavian wood gets you all riled up.
Tommy winces as the memory fades and cutting blade that is his headache returns.
The prospect of a day has never seemed so long.
Paracetamol. Water. Hard to shallow toast.
Back to bed.
Back out of bed. Retching. Better.
Tommy’s snooze is broken by a buzz from his phone. He pounces upon the sound like a tiger who waits for its prey in the long grass for hours. Though his enthusiasm is soon shattered by the electronic writing place before his eyes.
Hi love. Still coming over for Sunday dinner? Hope so. Be here at two. Love Mumxx
Rage soon builds up inside his core and is it isn’t long before his faux rage emerges.
‘’No Mum I don’t want spuds and fucking…chipolatas, I want my girlfriend back!'' Tommy's brain freezes when it comes to the task of listing meat and trimmings.
The outburst leaves him almost breathless, any amount of effort seems like a gargantuan task today.
He just couldn’t face any of it.
So much so that his face dives into his pillow and after a few seconds of increasingly heavy breathing, he screams loud enough into it that his flat mate might hear if he is in. Luckily Luke is out for his Sunday morning squash game, the productive prick.
Tommy almost gives himself whiplash and nearly dislocates his arm
Buzz oh glorious buzz, what you hold in store for me?
Hey love. Still coming over for dinner…
Tommy curses before he finishes reading.
''Fuck you double text reminder that I forgot about!’’
Tommy then takes the phone in his hands and decides that he wants to try and destroy it. He attempts to break it in two or just press the screen so hard that it simply evaporates before him.
''Die phone die! Just like my heart you can die, arghhhh, break you fucking...'' At that a sound comes from the recipient of ever wavering strength.
You don’t really mean that.
The soft words set Tommy back a touch and his overly fierce grip on the device softens.
The voice that reaches his ears soothes him to the point he almost feels guilty for his rash outburst.
Tommy sighs a touch and realises that any answer will simply top off the procession of pathetic that he has organised in his mind.
He places the phone down on his bed, stands up and performs a physical release of the pent up anger trapped beneath his skin. His arms flay and his neck strains so that the veins below make a rare appearance. He feels really good for a moment before returning back to his state of hungover pity.
Soon enough his back finds his duvet cover and his head once again meets with his damp pillow. Tommy crimps his toes and thinks about going back to sleep to a place where none of this is real. His arms stretch up above his head and then flop back onto the bed.
As they do his left knuckle finds the back of his phone. Before he knows it he is instinctively is scrolling down social media, trying to find a funny video or post to cheer him up. Instead he finds out his favourite player is injured for two months and that some girl from Uni that he hasn't spoken to in over a decade's pet goldfish has finally croaked it.
The book of revelations.
He closes the app on his phone and deliberates opening another one to check what some celebrity’s views on religion are on this holy Sunday. As his right thumb goes to automatically press on the left middle of the somewhat smudged touch screen, Tommy intervenes and halts the process.
Instead he lowers his thumb to the button at the bottom and temporarily pauses before shrugging and pressing his thumb down.
Lionel Ritchie appears fully dressed with mic in hand for a second before his sentence finisher is cut short by a short sweet reply.
Tommy smirks a touch, a completely natural reaction.
He instinctively asks the hollow secondary nicety that follows the greeting.
''How are y..?'' Before he can finish Luke storms into the room.
Sorry didn't quite catch that.
''What was that?!'' Luke asks fishing for a reason to tease Tommy, even in his hour of need.
''Ah nothing was just seeing what films might be on.'' Tommy splutters the words so fast that only someone heavily used to his voice would understand.
''Sounds like fun.'' Luke looks upon his friend and soon realises what he has stumbled in on. A stinky, potentially heart wrenching and teary eyed masturbation session.
Something he just can't let stand.
''Come on, get changed, open the window and meet me in the kitchen in twenty.'' Tommy starts to protest but a cheeky smile and slow ponderous shakes of the head halt the process.
Luke grins from ear to ear.
'' Cheeky Sunday session, we shall soon be upon thou!'' And just as quickly as he came he is gone. He really is annoyingly energetic.
Tommy eventually rolls himself up, his head telling him he shouldn’t be vertical just yet. He manages to find some paracetamol and water from the night before and soon finds himself in the shower. As he returns he goes to charge his phone yet as he does the auto pilot throws himself out window. Tommy realises what Luke had stopped him doing yet he doesn’t feel ashamed. He feels disappointed. Disappointed that the conversation could not develop.
‘’Hurry up mate, pleasure yourself later!’’ Luke’s words hit Tommy’s head like a hardened snowball, leaving a real sting.
For peer pressure takes over yet as Tommy eventuality makes his way to the grungy meeting place, he takes a long look at his slender phone, gazing at it a good five seconds before stuffing it into his pocket.