My eyes narrow at her. Then, I pull her down to the bed and roll on top of her. Challenge accepted, I say.
I’ll be gone this week—we have a wrestling meet in Indiana at Purdue, and won’t be back until late on Friday—but if it’s okay, I’m going to try texting you from the bus. I miss you. I really freaking miss you.Even if you aren’t ready to see me, I had to try.
I might be a douchebag, but I’m not a quitter.On Friday night, I’ve sequestered myself in my bedroom. Mel and Winnie are both getting ready to hit the bars since it’s the weekend, but I’ve been in no mood to socialize.My door is ajar, so I can hear them both laughing, and occasionally they stick their heads in to make sure I haven’t changed my mind about going out. Getting dressed up. Getting drunk.
Or, Zeke Wasted as Winnie so eloquently put it.I know waiting around for a guy to text you is a dumb thing to do—sadistic, really, and a little pathetic—but unlike a lot of guys, he isn’t playing games. He said he’s going to text me and I believe him.
I showed his letter to my roommates—a huge mistake, because obviously they’re both outraged on my behalf, having found me crying in the living room the night I blindly walked myself home from the library, too upset and blinded by tears and mascara to drive.
I’ve read it at least fifty times, fingers running over the hurried lines. The messy, hurried scrawl. Black ink. Black mood.I managed to find us a studio to rent, using the rest of my savings. And I got a job waiting tables. I got Tate enrolled in school. But the one job wasn’t bringing in enough money, so I got another. In the end, I was working three jobs.
There was a guy I waited tables with. The night he quit, he told me all about how he’d scored this job being an escort, and he was making a shit-ton of money doing it. So much that he didn’t need that job anymore. He said I should give it a try. He gave me a card with the number of the place he’d started working for. So, I gave them a call. What could it hurt, right? And, if taking some women out for dates or whatever would give me more money to give Tate a better life, then it was all for the better.So, I went in for an interview. Told the woman I was twenty-one. I looked it. But she laughed and said I had to show her ID. So, I told her I was eighteen. She said she had no problem with that. That her clients liked younger men. Said they would love me. She hired me on the spot. But said there were rules. Under no circumstances was I to have sex with a client. I told her that wasn’t something I was looking to do. So, she sent me off to HR, which was basically an overweight middle-aged woman behind a desk, smoking a cigarette. She took my photo for the database. I was given a form to fill out. Then, it was done. I was signed up with the agency and told they’d call me soon. I left, and they called three days later with a job for me.
A woman needed a date to her friend’s wedding. It was her first time using an escort. And my first job, so it worked well, as we were both nervous. I picked her up in a cab, took her to the party. We danced and drank. Had fun. When the night was over, I dropped her back home, and she thanked me for a great evening. Easy. Then, a few more jobs started to roll in, and I was getting more and more popular.Then, one night, I was out with this woman. She was in her forties. But really good-looking, you know. She oozed class, and the jewelry she wore could have fed Tate and me for the rest of our lives. She started telling me how her husband didn’t pay her any attention. She was sure he was screwing his secretary. She mentioned how lonely she was. Then, she reached over and slid her hand up my leg. She stared me square in the eye and said she’d pay me a lot of money to make her feel good about herself.