Chapter 1- Jessie
“Hurry we’re gonna be late.”
Alisha’s words chime throughout my mind as I scramble to get ready on time, glancing at the clock every couple of seconds so I don’t get left- again. Alisha and I are meeting another one of our-my friends- Jason for dinner. In our case, dinner is clubbing with cheap drinks and lousy drunks but still fun nonetheless. I reach for my phone and lastly my necklace, something I will never leave behind.
“Jessie I will leave you again! Even if that means I have to babysit Jason the whole night without you.”
“Fuck off I’m coming.” I answer her, and sadly the familiar abundance of anxiety fills me-making me question this entire situation. This is how she left you. Remember that? She was only supposed to go “out” and she went out and never came back. Fuck off.
I sneer at my own thoughts, pushing them further and further behind me, turning to rush down the stairs. “Coming!” I cant get left again.
“For someone who’s usual attire is sweats and old shirts you look really nice Jess.” Alisha’s sudden complement warms my heart, and I’ll never get used to it. “Really? I feel ridiculous.” I question as she pulls into Jason’s neighborhood, flexing her hand on the steering wheel. “Babe you literally look so hot. Like have my kids or something. That dress makes you look so stunning.” I can’t help but blush, Alisha is one of my biggest supporters and I love her for that. “I don’t know Li, I feel a little uncomfortable.” I look down to see the deep green material cinching around my sides. I met my eyes through the car mirror and they drape up and down from my spaghetti strap sleeves to the loosely tied black pumps.
“No need to be uncomfortable, you look very ravishing darling. And Jason will probably like it to.” “Alisha! Two things. One is-why’d you just talk like a eighty year old grandma. And two I will fucking kill you if you say that about Jason again. He’s my best friend.” “Aww my little best friend who I lived with at one point. There HAS to be something y’all have done.” Her response isn’t shocking, many people think me and Jason have done shit. “Nope! Never and you can ask the man himself- Hey Jason!”
“Hey guys. Where is the place were heading to tonight?” He asks as he climbs into the back seat of the car. “Always straight to business now are we Mr. Sinclair?” Alisha speaks up, grinning over at me. The nights just started and their already at it. “For the sake of things being causal and fun tonight, can we keep it chill please?” “Yes.” They both agree, probably realizing I’m not joking. “Thank you.” I say as we settle into a comfortable silence.
I wonder where we’re going. Is Hannah safe and okay?
“And it looks like we’re here! I love four.” Alisha speaks up, pulling me from my thoughts as we drive up to what looked to be a very tall business building? Alisha has the best places but in the weirdest locations. “Why do I get the feeling that this is a set up and you’ve kidnapped me or some strange shit like that.” Jason laughs from the backseat, and I’m glad we can all get along for the most part. “I can assure you if I wanted to kidnap you, you would be long gone!” I joke back as we pull into parking. The building looks simple enough, but that’s the thing. The simplest and dainty things can indeed be the most devilish and crazy-or at least that’s what Alisha says to me.
“Now we go into a sketchy elevator to get to a not-so sketchy party.” Alisha instructs as we walk over to the door, and I look over to Jason. He’s wearing a simple black button down shirt and black slacks, not straying far from his usual attire. “This seems...like a adventure.” “And those are the very best things Jessie! Adventures lead to wonderful memories.” She replies as we enter a hallway, with only two doors on the end. “Now one of these is our place and the other one is probably a torture room.” “Must you be so serious Jason? It’s a party.” Alisha says as she pulls open the door, leading us into a very crowded area. The lights dim the room to a faint purple, which adds to the already hazy party that is tainted with the smell of drugs, alcohol and sex.
Not my usual cup of tea. Jessie Stay away from alcohol.
“Im getting drinks.” “Get me something strong. I won’t be driving.” Jason requests as Alisha goes to probably flirt with the bartender for free shit.
“So nice to see you again. I thought we were out of business for a minute, the way you quickly scurried out of that last deal. Something holding you back?” The strangers deep accent cut through the thick smoke around us, entrancing my ears. Who is he and how haven’t I seen him before? It’s uncommon to go unnoticed around here.
“Sorry I got caught up with my personal life. It won’t happen again.” Jason turns to completely face the stranger, they were now head level. “And by personal life do you mean her?” I look up to meet the gaze that the stranger has placed on me, and I stop. Meeting me is a pair of strong green eyes, which seem to be staring deep into me like I was hiding something. I’m not hiding anything. Right?
Jason lets out of flustered sigh, bringing my attention to him now. “This is my friend Jessie. Jessie this is a work uh- acquaintance, Harry.” “Pleasure to meet you Jessie.” Harry says as he brings my hand to his mouth to plant a gentle kiss on my knuckles.
“Nice to meet you to Harry.” I smile, trying to keep my cool as he maintains eye contact. Why are they so intense, his eyes. Their captivating. He’s very attractive, I can’t keep my eyes from falling down to subtly check him out. Skinny black jeans and a print shirt button down shirt accompany his tall figure. His hands. The rings that accompany him-
A sudden cough brings me out of my mind, and I’m aware I stared far to long. Fuck. Not as subtle as you thought. “As I was saying before your friend checked me out so obviously, you still owe me.” Harry’s voice cuts through the air again, his deep accent ropes around my ears, tempting my mind into a less innocent idea.
“I paid you the shit I owed originally, we’re good.”
“You didn’t pay me shit Jason don’t act like you did. I’m tired of your games and lies, you are already aware of what the consequences will be, don’t make me use them.” At the end of his sentence, Harry’s eyes flick to me before landing on Jason’s again, and Jason looks to me.
“Is there something I missed? Are y’all dealing or something?”
“She’s funny. I see why you would want to protect her so bad.” Harry’s response confuses me even more as to what this conversation is about, leaving my head spinning.
with his final words, Harry and his friends leave us in our thoughts, and I’m having some questionable ones right now.
“What was that all about?” “Honestly just some work stuff.” Jason replies, trying to keep a neutral face. He looks stressed and- flustered? “Oh okay cool. I know work stresses you out a lot but I’m glad your back with us for now.” “Me to.” Jason’s response is genuine, but his smile isn’t. I need to relax. It’s nothing.
“And it looks like you folks could use some intoxication flowing through your blood. Shots?” Alisha suddenly walks up with an array of little glasses filled with various liquids.” “Holy shit did you fuck him or something? How’d you get so much shit?” “I just worked my charm. But as I was saying, we can’t let good shit go to waste. Shots anyone?” She responds. Fuck it. “We can call a Uber. Shots it is!” “Aye she’s loosening up!” We all laugh at Jason as we toss back hopefully the first of many drinks tonight, I’m far to nervous to try and do anything else.
“Let’s go fuck around on the dance floor!” “I don’t know Alisha, we’re a little to happy right now!” I slur my words a little bit as she pulls me out onto the floor after a few to many shots, leaving Jason at our table.
My thoughts begin to lighten up as I twirl around with Alisha, to caught up think about anything else other then trying to maintain what little amount of sobriety I have left.
“Thank you! And fuck life!”