I Hate You
Chat Song: ‘Dynasty’ by Miia.
“A scar I can’t reverse and the more it heals, the worse it hurts. Gave you every piece of me, no wonder it’s missing. Don’t know how to be so close to someone so distant.”
Sunday May 17 2020
Josh’s location: Sitting on his bed.
J: Ian. I did something really messed up.
I: What? What do you mean?
I: What about her?
(Joshua sighs, taking a minute to gather his thoughts. He is not sure what had gotten over him earlier; what on earth did he just do with his best friend? He has a girlfriend who he is certain he loves, how could he have been so disloyal? But that is not the only guilt weighing on his shoulders. The heavier one is: how could he have just walked out leaving Lex without staying behind and spending more time with her? What he did was not like sexting or virtual intimacy; it was real, and she deserved to have shared that moment with someone who is not attached to someone else. Someone who will lay next to her after it all happens and make her feel loved. He won’t deny the fact that he enjoyed the moment, and he did feel a strange foreign feeling when their lips made contact, but it doesn’t eliminate the fact that what he did was wrong. He felt like he made the biggest mistake.)
J: I touched her.
I: 🤔You touched her as in....?
I: 😳What?? You mean virtually, via video chat, right?
J: No. Physically.
I: Dude, how on earth did that happen?
J: I went to her house earlier today. I should not have gone there; I have no idea why I did. We were in her room...we were talking for a bit and then I kissed her, and things just went a bit too far from there. I wasn’t in the right frame of mind. I feel so fucking guilty. I can’t believe I did that.
J: I know. And the whole time I totally forgot that Sabrina had messaged me. She got mad, thinking I was giving my ‘attention’ to someone else.
I: Which you were, by the way. You should have told her you were playing a video game or something. That works all the time.
J: I never thought of that.
I: Dude, I told you that sexting is torture.
J: I know now.
I: You do not like Lexie intimately; you’re gonna mentally fuck her up. Has a guy ever touched her that way before you?
J: No. She’s a virgin.
I: Exactly. You’re gonna mess her up, J. You better keep your distance.
J: I can’t do that. She’s my best friend.
I: Not anymore. Best friends don’t kiss and touch each other.
J: I can’t just touch her and then not talk to her, Ian. That would be quite messed up.
I: Yeah but you must pull back. Keep your distance a little. Withdraw. So that she has time to unfeel anything that may be building up inside of her. Take my advice, keep your distance for at least a week.
J: She won’t like that.
I: But it’s better than her getting hurt. Lex can be quite fragile, and you know that.
J: I know. Sabrina can’t know about this.
I: She would be so heartbroken. Did you get back to her?
J: I went to her house but she wasn’t there. Plus she’s not picking up my calls, so I’ll give her space.
J: Yeah...but I am more worried about Lexie, I hope she is alright, I just left her like that.
I: You left her?
J: Yeah. I felt so remorseful about not responding to Sabrina while I was...doing ‘that’ with Lex. And being there, sitting on her bed was pulling me down into the quicksand of guilt.
I: So you touched the poor girl then left her right after...you’re a fucking asshole Josh.
J: I know.
I: Was she hurt when you were leaving?
J: No...I don’t know, I didn’t look back.
I: You’re a giant dick.
J: I know, and I feel guilty. I want to ask her if she is alright.
I: You can’t do that right now. Let her unwind. You’re the first guy she has ever gotten a little intimate with, so you have to handle the situation with care, or she may start getting attached. Don’t text her for a week.
J: I am sorry but you say that ‘I’m mean’ but your idea of a ‘solution’ is quite messed up.
I: Okay ignore her and if she tries really hard to reach out to you, I mean like double-texting-hard, then you send her small, one-worded texts. You know, like: Yes. No. That type of thing. Keep it short and give her space and time to forget what happened.
J: Alright. Advice noted.
I: You are effed.
“Lexie! Dinner is ready.”
Lexie shifts a little at the sound of her mom’s voice. She lacks the appetite to eat anything. Since Josh left, she has been staring at the wall in her room, the bitter-sweet moment she just spent with him playing on repeat in her head.
She knows that this is all her fault. It is no secret that Josh has a girlfriend and yet she made her emotions take full control of her and impaired her judgment. Her tears are all dried up and she is numb, not sure what to feel now.
She is curled up in bed when the door to her room creaks open. Due to her reluctance in offering a response, her mom has decided to check up on her, moving over to the bed with a worried look on her face.
She swallows and begins to sit up, not wanting to create a scene and raise her mother’s suspicion.
“Is everything okay?” Her mom sits beside her, pressing a knuckle to her daughter’s forehead. Lexi’s mother is a nurse, which naturally makes her a tad too caring sometimes. “Are you sick?”
She shakes her head. “No…just tired.”
Her mom presses her lips together, tilting her head to the side as her brown curls follow. “Did something happen between you and Josh?”
Lexie stiffens a bit, narrowing her eyes. “No…"
“Are you sure?” Her mom raises a curious brow and Lexie nods, attempting to remain unphased.
“It’s just that Josh looked a bit uneasy when he left earlier...so I assumed something happened. That’s all.”
“Nothing happened, his parents were just probably fighting again.”
“Oh…that’s quite sad. I should give his mom a call tonight.” She exhales tiredly. “Alright, come down for dinner when you’re ready.”
Lexie just nods, as her mother conjures up from the bed and makes her way back out.
As she watches her mom leaves, she realizes that she is in no position to be petty. In a more logical light, Josh did nothing; he did ask for permission to touch her, right? Not once, but thrice. She could have simply said no and stood her ground; he didn’t force her.
So, she takes her phone up from the nightstand and decides to shoot him a quick text. The white light beams on her features as she clicks open his chat, quite happy and relieved to learn that he is ‘online.’ Her small fingers quickly tap her message.
(She notices that as soon as she sends the text, his status switches to ‘offline.’ She thinks nothing of it, proposing that maybe the app’s algorithm delayed displaying his status and that maybe he is busy and must attend to something before responding to her. But then, while she scrolls down her phone, observing the display pictures of her contacts, she notices that his profile picture has switched to an image of his little brother. She realizes that he was just ‘active’ a while ago and so she reopens his chat, discovering that he is back ‘online.’ Thinking that he somehow missed her text, she sends him another.)
(About thirty minutes have passed, and Joshua finally decides to respond.)
L: Is everything okay with Sabrina?
Twenty minutes later…
L: Oh. Are you okay?
L: Did you get home safely?
(Joshua has gone offline.)
Lexie narrows her eyes at his abrupt departure, then she shakes her head and tries to overlook the fact that he seems a bit weird. She concludes that she’s probably being sensitive because of what happened between them earlier and so she rests her phone down and chooses to get some rest, deciding that she will talk to him at school tomorrow.
But ‘tomorrow’ has arrived and Josh is not at school. The day goes by torturously for Lex; school tends to be a lot boring without Josh and Selene is much too self-absorbed to realize that Lexie is not in the best of moods. She prefers it that way; her ‘friend’ can be quite judgemental sometimes and she is not in the mood for her mean antics.
As soon as Lexie gets home, she rushes up to her room and grabs her phone off her bedside table, deciding to ask Josh if he is okay. She could not get him off her mind all day and found herself spacing out in classes.
L: Josh. Why were you not at school today?
(A few minutes have passed, and she is yet to get a response, but she lacks the patience today because she is now certain that something is definitely off about him. Could it be that his parents fought again?)
L: Seriously, why are you ignoring me??
(Finally, he replies.)
J: I am not ignoring you, Lexie.
L: Then what are you doing?
J: I’m just tired.
L: Of who? Me?
J: No. Why did you have to assume that? Geeze...
L: You are avoiding my messages and I didn’t see you at school today.
J: I just need time.
L: Did things work out with Sabrina?
J: Not entirely but we are almost there.
L: It is partially my fault. I took up all her time.
J: You didn’t. Just stop, seriously.
(Lexie blinks at her screen. Why is he being such a jerk? She can clearly feel the aggression in his text.)
L: You seem mad at me though. What did I do?
J: You didn’t do anything. 🙄
L: Don’t roll your eyes at me, Josh.
J: It’s an emoji, it’s not real, Lexie.
L: Why are you being an asshole?? Is it my fault that you are arguing with your girlfriend?
J: Everything isn’t always about you. Get over yourself, Lex.
L: You’re right. Everything isn’t always about me. It’s always about Sabrina.
L: I’ll stop texting you then.
J: Do what you want.
(Lexie stares at his message and she feels her heart painfully shattering as she furiously taps a reply.)
L: You’re an asshole.
J: I know.
L: I hope you never text me back.
J: I probably won’t.
(She takes a minute to absorb the words on her screen. Josh is really going all out. What did she do to deserve this?)
L: Fine, do whatever you want.
L: I don’t need you.
L: I hope you’re happy that you pushed me away. I will never ever text you back.
(Without waiting for his response, she angrily sends another.)
L: I fucking hate you.
(Lexie has gone offline.)
(Lexie has blocked you.)
Josh stares at the last sentence she sent, a sharp feeling piercing at his heart as he rereads the four painful words.
I fucking hate you.
Lexie has never sworn before now, and Josh realizes that he must have really hurt her feelings.
Arguments with Sabrina have never wounded him this much; he feels like someone is repeatedly hammering his heart.
He shuts his eyes and presses a palm to his face, exhaling heavily. He knows he deserves it, and if she never talks to him again, he has no-one to blame but himself.
His cellphone rings from his pillow, and he takes it up to discover that Sabrina has finally decided to call him. She was giving him the cold shoulder for a while and he was anticipating her coming around, but now, he is not excited about that anymore. He throws his phone down and decides not to answer.
Lexie just told him that she hates him, and that is the only thing that matters right now.
“Some days, it’s hard to see if I was a fool or you a thief. Made it through the maze to find my one in a million and now you’re just a page torn from the story I’m living.” —MIIA.