As a universal rule, I tend to only go to parties at the weekend because a) no party organised midweek would be worth going to, and b) there was no way in hell I could survive a day at work with a monumental hangover. This day was a Saturday, and the party was the apartment of a friend – it was his birthday party – Dale’s.
I had known Dale Flood for a few years, in fact I’d go as far to say we’d been pretty good friends for a while and yes, in my teenage years, we had found ourselves fooling around one night, but that was about the size of it. Nothing more, nothing less. We had fun together, the same sense of humour (mainly forming puns to emphasise the unusual nature of his surname), the same taste in music, the same general fondness for each other’s company. In fact, we’re all friends here, so it’s safe for me to admit that I really liked Dale and had done for quite some time. Sure, we’d had a bit of fun back in the day but it never quite progressed into anything else, as much as I would have liked it to. So, given my uncontrollable feelings towards Dale, I was excited to see him.
Naturally, my timekeeping was questionable once again as I managed to hop the train into the city an hour later than planned to join the celebrations. I didn’t care much for arriving on time at this point, as my appearance was more important than my punctuality if I was to catch his eye in a light other than the friend zone. I sat myself carefully on the edge of a seat on the train so as to ensure that my outfit stayed perfectly in tact. I took my lipstick out of my clutch to apply another long lasting layer of lusciousness and at the same time, I saw my phone light up.
You on your way or what? Typical Naomi making a fashionably late entrance 😉 can’t wait to see you! xxx
It was a text from Dale. Three kisses, as of late, that was just our thing, never a text without them. However, the winky face – apart from being the mark of a moron – did in fact suggest a slightly cheeky flirt which wasn’t something we really did these days. Maybe he really WAS looking forward to seeing me?
I arrived at his apartment after about twenty minutes on the train and thank the lord, it hadn’t rained, so the frizzy hair stayed away and my lashes were still firmly glued to my eyelids. An excellent start to the evening, I thought. I could hear the nostalgic rock music blasting through the door before I even managed to get in, it was just like being 17 again at a alcohol-fueled shenanigan with old friends. My favourite.
Dale opened the door and was clearly already pretty intoxicated, as he threw in arms around me then kind of shoved me into the kitchen – where party central always was – whilst he poured me a glass of I’m not quite sure what, but I’m certain it could have stripped the paintwork off a car. I drank it anyway, I needed to play catch up.
A couple of hours went by and needless to say by this point, the music was still blasting, the drinks were still flowing, and everyone seemed to be in love with each other. Oh the things a few cocktails can do to a group of people! Dale and I were chatting, laughing, joking, in the kitchen, with the occassional brush on the arm or wink across the room. Was he ACTUALLY flirting with me?
Maybe this was it. Maybe he did like me too. Maybe we had to wait a couple of years to grow up a bit before thinking about putting our feelings into practice. Sure, a quick fumble way back when had nothing to it but now, maybe there could be more to Naomi and Dale. After all, he’d been texting me for weeks before the party, and he was looking forward to seeing me. Maybe it took a bit of Dutch courage for him to seal the deal?
Dale shared his apartment with 2 friends, who were also in attendance and in no fit state for anything at the time due to, well, Tequila I imagine. He’d been telling me about wanting to start writing professionally again, and I encouraged him. I remember us sat around in college whilst he scribbled down all sorts of prose, and from what I could remember, he was pretty good.
“Naomi, come in here, I’ll show you, I’ve been working on something…”
I followed him into the bedroom, watching carefully as to where I was putting my feet. 6 inch heels and copious amounts of God knows what was in the punch bowl seemed to be a terrible combination. Just as he went to pick up his book, he looked at me. You know the look, the deep-into-your-eyes-I’m-about-to-kiss-you-so-please-kiss-me-back look. He knew I fancied him, he must have. Of course I was going to kiss him back, so I did.
The kiss quickly escalated. The party was still raving in the other rooms and yet here we were, lips locked making our way into his en-suite. He bent me over in front of the sink and lifted my dress, it was when I closed my eyes that I realised I was a lot more intoxicated than I initially thought but don’t worry, I knew exactly what I was doing. We’d crossed the line and gone from friends to something more, and I reckon I’d fantasised about this for a while.
Well, not this.
We continued and had sex. It wasn’t good. It wasn’t great. It wasn’t anything. It was as I opened my eyes and looked into the mirror in front of me as we were getting it on that I realised he didn’t like me at all, and how could I have been so fucking stupid. There was no emotion, no eye contact, hardly any contact at all, just a 5 minute quick in and out from behind, then nothing. I wanted to cry. I can’t believe I fell for it. Literally moments after he was ‘satisfied’ shall we say, he left the bathroom and headed back into the party. I was still in the bathroom, drunk, confused, hurt and feeling absolutely ridiculous.
He didn’t like me, but he knew I liked him, and I guess Mr Clever Clogs took advantage of that fact to get his end away on his birthday. I’d never felt so humiliated, I could literally hear him carrying on partying in the other room as if nothing had just happened. I couldn’t stay, there was no way, so I left. I didn’t say goodbye to anyone, I just kinda popped my head in the room and waved, and jumped a cab home. How could I have been so stupid?
I’m not gonna lie. When I got home, I cried. I’m always the one who follows their head and not their heart, but in this instance, my emotions got the better of me, and resulted in me feeling completely used and degraded. Obviously, because I’d had a bit to drink, I considered that I might have been acting slightly dramatic, so I sent Dale a text to say it had been nice to see him and hoped he’d had a good birthday, and his response?
Yeah U 2
Wow. That really summed it up. He’d put in the groundwork, I’ll give him that, but he had at least confirmed that I wasn’t overreacting, I was perfectly correct. Dale Flood had completely used me. I guess the surname thing isn’t that funny anymore, but now it makes sense that he could be named after a natural disaster, because that’s exactly what he was.
It’s been a long time since this happened, and of course I’ve recovered from any emotional trauma I endured, but I can comfortably assure you that my heart leads me nowhere these days and maybe that’s my problem, love isn’t logical, it’s emotional, but how do I know when to make decisions using my head or my heart? Who knows, no one knows, I guess that’s the challenge.