Chapter Ten

"Alright, so what do you want for it?"

"Ten." she said to me with a smile and we made the quick transaction outside the computer lab, Skid Hall, we called it. The rest of the day I was weighted down with this little pill residing in my pocket.

Pot wasn't cutting it for me anymore. I smoked too much on a regular basis and it didn't affect me as much as it once had - it had become something I relied on. I needed something stronger, something more.

So I held the little pill in my hand in a driveway outside a friend's house where we were all partying, and all of my friends stood around me, Evan, Richard, Chris, Mark, Andrew, Dylan, and they were all telling me to man up and just do my drugs. I was scared, but incredibly excited. I looked down at the little blue pill that would determine the next few years of my life, staring at the "D&G" embossed on its surface, before putting it just underneath my tongue and letting it dissolve its chemicals into my bloodstream.

Funny thing is, the only person who wasn't pressuring me to take the pill was Chris. I sometimes half-think that I only did things like that to impress him. Actually I know that's the truth. We still hadn't discussed the issue between us, about our age difference, but I think he knew how I felt the whole time. We'd still get together and make out, fool around, or whatever, but nothing was ever discussed. So when I took that little blue pill, he went inside and mixed himself a drink, Jack Daniels and Vanilla Coke.

The rest of the night went fantastically. Even my jeans were fun to touch, and everything seemed to make me happy. Juice tasted amazing, pizza did not, I quickly found out.

Chris just laughed me the whole night, but in a nice way. I desperately wanted to tell him that I loved him, but felt that my words weren't valid due to my chemical influence, so I bit my tongue (not too hard, I never had problems gnawing my face when I was high) and decided to save my words for a better date.

Eventually the party dispersed and I stayed the night at Amanda's, and floated off into a dreamless chemical sleep.

* * *

I left for California with three pills stashed away in a folding footstool disguised as a plastic turtle. It was nearly Christmas and there was no way in hell I was going to be caught trying to cross the border with ecstasy - besides, I was going to Disneyland with my family.

The whole trip in California was spent in solitude. I was moody, crabby, and irritable and I'm sure I gave my parents one hell of a time, but it was the last place I wanted to spend my Christmas holidays. I missed all of my new friends terribly. I missed getting high.

So when my stepsister knocked on the motel room door one day with a joint (my parents were enjoying the rides and I was being moody) I stepped out onto the balcony with her and got high as a kite, and then she said to me, "Just don't tell your mom." so I staggered back into my bed in the room and fell asleep. I woke up and grabbed a pen and paper and started writing to all of my friends, telling them how much I missed them.

Last time I was in Chris's room was when he was back for a visit about two years ago, and he still keeps the letter on his dresser.

* * *

We got back the day before New Years, so I had just enough time to get home and fall asleep and find out what the plans were. Everybody was going to the trailer park for a New Year's party at Amanda's. I grabbed my pills, stuffed them into my bra and we headed out there.

This one was pink, with a little heart stamped into it. I placed it gently underneath my tongue and waited for that beautiful, blissful feeling to take over my body and soul once more, and within an hour the drugs started to kick in and I decided it would be a great idea to play around in the snow.

I stayed outside while everybody watched in concern from Trevor's living room window and felt and watched these beautiful white cottonball sized snowflakes fall from this white sky. Snow. I have never found anything like this, as it sinks into my pores, and the beautiful resonating silence it creates. I could have stayed out there forever.

"Jess, it's almost midnight!" I ran inside where everybody was sitting around watching television, or rather, the one channel that Trevor's TV could get. I don't even remember what we were watching or what was happening but all of a sudden everybody else was outside banging pots and pans and this loud raucous cacophony of noise made me want to celebrate. So I looked around for my New Year's kiss.

Chris was outside on the porch throwing up his JD & Coke into a plastic bag but I was high enough and didn't care so I kissed him anyways, but apparently he didn't even remember it the next day.