Feisty Francesca

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#27 A drunk horndog dating a gentleman

“Hey!” a tiny little girl in her early twenties jumps into the garage, her short green hair making her look younger than she probably is. “I’m Marcia.”

“Francesca.”

We shake hands and she takes in my appearance. My highlights have faded a bit to light purple, my nose piercing is pink and glittery, I’m in jeans and a long-sleeved shirt. Nothing cool like her black dress with red polka dots, and my shoes are basic sneakers, not black military boots like hers. She smiles, apparently deeming me worthy, and she goes to get up her keyboard. Joshua is already practicing the song on his guitar while Yord gives him pointers.

Fuck. Okay. No going back now.

It takes us a while to get through the song without messing up halfway through, which gives me some time to give myself a silent pep talk. We’re not doing vocals yet, just playing together until we’re perfectly in synch.

“Okay, go Franny,” Yord says, winking at me. “Rock that mic, girl.”

“Yeah,” I breathe, even more nervous now.

“Want me to sing along?” Joshua asks. He knows the story about my dad and my stage fright. I told him during our walk this morning, so he gets it.

I nod, grateful to have some backup.

Yord counts down and I get through the first ‘ey ey ey’s and ‘oh oh’s without trouble. Joshua winks at me and I start the first verse, my eyes closed.

“Julie was a girl like no other. She used to have a style that would make ’em boys stutter. And everytime she rocked that stage with a mic in her hand, she made me a bit more desperate to be in a band.”

Joshua is singing along, but once we’re through the first verse, I realize that I’m okay. I’m having fun. I open my eyes and give him a nod, silently instructing him to let me have this. He grins and focuses on his guitar.

“Julie Julie Julie, I’ve been thinking ’bout the things you could’ve been,” I sing, even jumping around a little. “Julie Julie Julie. So what happened to my favourite high school queen?”

When we’re done, everyone is smiling.

“Damn, girl, you can sing,” Marcia says, sounding impressed. “Is she in the band?” she asks Yord. “Because if she is, I want in as well.”

“Well, Fran, what do you say?” Yord ask, starting a soft ruffle on his drums to add some suspense. “Are you in?”

“I guess…” I glance at Joshua for support. “Yeah, okay, I’m in. But I’ve got stage fright, so I’m not sure if I will ever make it out of this garage.”

“Oh girl, we will push you the fuck out where you’re ready,” Marcia promises with a wink. “Well, not Josh, he’s too sweet to do any pushing, but Yord and I are hardcore. We won’t take no for an answer.”

“Hey!” Joshua protests. “I’m not sweet!”

“Yeah you are.” I ruffle his curls and smile at how hard he’s blushing. “You’re like a little puppy.”

“Right?” Marcia agrees. “Okay, so do you know In your arms by Chef’Special, Francesca?”

Oh shit. No no no.

“Why do you look like you wanna puke?” Marcia asks, confused. “It’s okay if you don’t.”

I do know that song. It’s a song about missing your deceased father because he can’t sing you to sleep anymore, and hoping that you can sing your own kids to sleep with your own songs one day, like your dad did for you. That one has me bawling my eyes out every single time.

“Play it for us,” Joshua says, squeezing my arm. “I bet you play it acoustic at home, right? Just pretend you’re in your own living room us idiots making you all nervous.”

“Okay,” I decide. It’s time to get over my fears, I guess. I sit down on the stool next to Josh and take the guitar Yord hands me. Here we go.

I get through the first part without trouble, but then it’s time for the second verse.

“I miss you so, I miss you so. And I’ll miss you ’till i’m old. I miss you so, I miss you so. But my fears will fade, I know, ’cause it’s my heart that you helped to build. And love is my compass still, yeah, love will fill the holes I’ve got, ’cause you will never hold me. But I know that you are with me, and I k-know t-that you’re in p-p-peace…” I can’t finish the last lines, and I start crying, clutching the guitar.

“Oh fuck,” Yord says, sounding freaked. “Did we break her?”

“No,” Joshua says softly, putting an arm around me. “She’s fine.”

I blink away my tears and realize that he’s right. I’m fine. I cried in front of two people I barely know, but I’m fine. I pick back up where I left off, finishing the song with minimal tears. When I’m done, I play it again, this time getting through it without shedding a single tear.

When I look up after I’m done, I see that Yord and Marcia are both wiping at their eyes. Surprised, I look at Joshua, who is also looking misty-eyed.

“That was beautiful,” Joshua says, squeezing my shoulder. “You really know how to convey emotions when you sing, Franny.”

“Yeah,” Marcia agrees, sighing. “Beautiful.”

“Okay, so now we’ve got like, the best singer ever, an okay guitarist, a decent person on the keys and an epic drummer,” Yord sums up. “All we need are some original songs and a gig and we’ll be famous in no time.”

“Sure.” I laugh and roll my eyes at Joshua. “Because that’s how the music industry works.”

We play for another hour, but then I need to get going, because I’ve got to get some food in my system before heading over to the cocktail bar where I’m meeting Destiny. Joshua orders us some pizza and we eat in his apartment while we watch a movie.

I get changed at home, wanting to feel good tonight. I pull on a short purple dress and curl my hair. Destiny is already waiting for me when I arrive with two cocktails with umbrellas. We talk about our lives, and she turns out to be really sweet. She and her husband have been trying to get pregnant for eight months now, and she knows that lots of people take while to get pregnant, but she still worries, which is only natural. We end up getting shit-faced drunk together, having a blast. It’s nice to let loose again. I needed that.

When I walk out of the bar and get in my uber, I call James to see if he’s home. He picks up after a few rings, sounding groggy.

“Are you okay?” he asks in a gruff voice.

“Yeah,” I giggle. “Just had drinks with Destiny. Can I come over?”

“Now?” he grunts, sounding surprised. “Sure.”

I give my driver James’ address and hop out of the car, getting buzzed into the building right away. James waits for me in his doorway, surprised to see that I took the elevator. I’m too drunk for stairs, especially in heels.

“Hmm, you look hot,” I murmur when I see him standing there in his boxer shorts, tats on full display.

He looks me over with a frown. “Are you drunk?”

“A little bit, maybe,” I reply, giggling while I throw my arms around him. “Okay, yeah, very drunk.”

He grabs when I almost fall over and pulls me into his arms, carrying me into his bedroom bridal style. He helps me take off my dress and heels, but pushes away my hands when I try to take off his shorts.

“Honey, you’re drunk. We’re not having sex when you’re intoxicated.”

“Why not?” I ask, kissing him hard. “You’re my boyfriend.”

“Yes,” he says, pushing me away again. “I am. Doesn’t mean it’s okay for me to take advantage of you.”

“You’re not,” I assure him, rubbing his erection. Even though he’s telling me no, he’s more than ready for me. “Come on, let me ride that beautiful bedazzled dick.”

James grunts and grabs my wrists so I can’t keep touching him. “Fran, you’re drunk. We’re not doing this right now. Just go to sleep.”

“But I’m horny,” I argue.

“Yeah, me too, but the answer is still no.” He rolls me onto my side and spoons me, his arms caging me against his chest. “I’m glad you’re here, though. Let’s just go to sleep.”

I keep protesting, but he holds me and whispers sweet words in my ear until I calm down, and finally I fall asleep in his arms, feeling warm and safe.

***

“Morning, sunshine,” James says with a grin when I finally wake up and make my way into his living room in my panties from last night and one of his shirts. My dress and heels are still on his bedroom floor. “How did you sleep?”

“I slept fine,” I croak, my voice hoarse. “It’s waking up that’s the problem.”

“That’s what you get from getting drunk,” he teases, handing me a glass of water and a painkiller. “Best to stay hydrated. How’s your head?”

“Awful,” I groan. “Did I throw up?”

James shakes his head. “No, you were mostly trying to ride my beautiful bedazzled dick.”

“Oh God,” I grunt when the memory comes back to me. “Please tell me I didn’t also say-”

“-that I should never wear any clothes ever again?” James finishes for me, laughing at my horror. “And that I could totally be a stripper?”

“Shut up,” I tell him, finishing my water and handing it back so he can fill it up again. “Oh God, I’m so sorry. I get like that when I’m drunk. Horny and stupid and I’ve got no filter.”

He hands me my water and presses a kiss to my forehead. “I can’t say I’m a big fan of drunk Franny, but it’s good to know that you at least end up in my bed when you get horny and stupid. Do you have work today?” He checks his phone and nods. “Another night shift, I see. That’s going to be brutal with a hangover.”

I shrug. “It’s not that bad. Won’t be the first time.”

“Do you often get drunk then?” James looks like he doesn’t like that at all. Hmm. Guess we found something about me that he doesn’t think is cute and amazing and lovable.

“I like to party sometimes, yeah. I don’t drink as much as I used to, though. Do you ever go out, dance, spend all night in a club?”

James shakes his head. “No, never.”

“Never?” I repeat, so shocked that half of my hangover seems to disappear in the blink of an eye. Surely he’s kidding, right?

“Not really my scene,” James says, shrugging. “I like a glass of wine with dinner or late at night, and I drink the occasional beer, but I’ve only been drunk three times in my life, when I was 21 or 22 or something. And I’m not a great dancer at all, don’t really like clubs. So loud, and everything smells like sweat and booze… No, I’d rather just snuggle on the couch with my girl.”

That last part sounds sweet, so I smile. Still, it’s a little weird that my own boyfriend doesn’t party at all. It’s not a dealbreaker or anything, and maybe this shouldn’t be a surprise since he’s obviously a very serious and responsible guy. He didn’t even sleep with me last night. I’ve ended up in Thomas’ bed in a similar state many nights before, and he never seemed to have a problem letting me ride him until I passed out.

I’m not sure how to feel about that. Is Thomas wrong for having sex with drunk girl? I guess I should be happy that James is so good to me and that he doesn’t want to take advantage of me, but does that mean we’ll never have drunk sex? I like drunk sex. It’s fun and sexy and I let myself go completely in a way that I never would when I’m sober. It’s not something I do a lot, but occasionally… yeah, I like that. A lot. My threesomes with Thomas were both when I was drunk and I don’t regret those nights at all.

It’s not like some random guy in a club tried to take me home last night and sleep with me after getting me drunk on purpose. I had drinks with a friend and came to my boyfriend’s place for a little midnight… snack. Surely that’s not taking advantage of me? If I’d been sober I’d have wanted to sleep with him too. One hundred percent.

“I need to head in to work soon,” James says, kissing my forehead again. “How about I make you some breakfast? You should get some food in your system, baby.”

“Yeah,” I agree, not voicing any of my thoughts. I’m still hungover and not sure if this is even something I should bring up. He was really sweet to me last night and he’s taking care of me right now, being the perfect gentleman. Maybe I’m just too used to douchy guys and I need to get used to someone like James, who puts me on a pedestal in a way no guy has ever done before.

When James eventually changes into his police uniform and heads to work, I stay at his apartment a little longer. He gave me a key before heading out so I can lock up behind me, and now I’m sitting on his couch with the key in my hands, staring at it.

I’ve never had a guy’s key before.

Well aside from Thomas, but that doesn’t count. That’s just for convenience because we’re neighbors.

Does this mean James and I are taking another step towards being even more serious? Is this like a step on the ladder to love?

I don’t know. All I know is that I don’t love him yet, but think I am falling for him, slowly but surely. He’s amazing. I’d be stupid not to fall for him.

With a sigh, I put my dress and heels back on and do the walk of shame to my apartment. I’ve never been this glad he only lives ten minutes away from me, even when I’m stumbling around on hooker heels.

“Holy moly,” Thomas says when he sees me. He’s getting back from buying groceries, his hands full of bags. “You look sexy as fuck.”

“I don’t,” I grumble. I take my keys from my purse and open the door for him so he won’t have to put his stuff down. We ride the elevator together, Thomas’ eyes still on me.

“Why are you doing the walk of shame in the middle of the afternoon?” Thomas asks when I open his apartment door for him and thrown myself onto his couch. He puts down his groceries and his hungry eyes rake over my body.

“I had drinks with Destiny and spent the night with James after,” I explain. I should get up and head to my own apartment, but I’m so damn tired from walking over here. And hungover. Mostly that.

“Sweet,” Thomas says, grinning. “Drunk Franny is sexy and a hell of a lot of fun. I love drunk Franny. James is a lucky guy.”

“Yeah,” I grumble. “He could have been.”

“What?” Thomas asks while he starts to put away his groceries.

“Nothing.” I get up and stretch my sore limbs. “I’m going to take shower. See you later, Thom.”

He looks over his shoulder at me, his gaze lingering on my breasts that are spilling out of my dress. I wave goodbye and head to my own apartment, knowing I need a shower and some more painkillers, and preferably a few hours of sleep before I have to head in for my night shift.

James texts me to ask me how I’m feeling later that afternoon and I call him during his break to chat for a moment. He’s got me smiling like a smitten teenager, and I decide that I like someone treating me like a lady for once. So, we didn’t have drunk sex. That’s no big deal, right? He likes me better sober and one hundred percent in control of my actions. That’s a good thing.

Right?

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