My Sweet Eighteen

“Your parents go out of town for the weekend and you have the house to yourself. What happens?”

My dress keeps trying to travel up to my hips, my legs don’t seem to want to walk straight, my hair is more in knots than in two buns like they had been styled only hours before, and I can’t really remember what number of drinks I’m on.

The house is crowded with both people I know and love from school, but of also people that I can’t even recognise in the haze of the dimmed lights… or is that because my eyes are slightly closed? Oh yeah! I’m outside.

It was only meant to be a small gathering. I turned eighteen last week so of course my parents said I could have a couple of close friends over for the weekend; only a bit of alcohol was allowed, music must be kept low as it will irritate the neighbours, and everything must be the way it was left when they get back.

I stuck to those rules.

I promise.

It was Jaz that told everyone I was having a party… or was it Frankie? Wiley? Bonnie? I’ve had so many shots I can’t remember, but someone told pretty much everyone in our classes that I was throwing a Mega Eighteenth Birthday Party and that Everyone Was Invited. Which I did not!

Five of my friends were meant to come over and that was it. But now, there are so many people cluttering inside and outside of my house, the dining table is layered with alcohol, pizza that seems to have been ordered to my house over ten times is all over the floor, I’m pretty sure there is stubs of cigarette in my mum’s flowerbed, music that I don’t even like it being turned up to full volume from speakers I didn’t even know our family owned, and I’m being hugged right, left and centre and thanked for this awesome party, dude!

Tomorrow I’m going to have to get to work cleaning all of this mess up.

Right now though, I’m just trying to find Beth. I lost her in the crowd when we were dancing about half an hour ago. I’ve been looking all over but can’t find her. I suspect she ran up to the spare room with her boyfriend. God, I hope they’re not doing anything disgusting.

Bleugh! Just the thought of it makes me want to puke but I’m pretty sure both my upstairs and downstairs toilets are occupied with people doing just that. I made sure to put a No Entry sign on both my parents’ and my bedroom door so that those beds and our bathrooms go non-puked over.

Seriously, when did everything get so out of hand?

I stumble back into my house and up the stairs, the giant red cup in my hand sloshing pink punch onto my skin. I wish my legs would just work already and my head stop spinning. I don’t even remember having that much to drink… but if I’m honest, after one drink I don’t usually know when to stop. That’s why I don’t drink when I go to parties often. I don’t know my own limit and don’t want to test it either just in case I do something I’ll regret the next day.

Of course I go to parties. Being part of the Popular Group at school leaves a lot of pressure on me to attend multiple socials and parties, as well as keep my grades high, keep up to trend on what’s cool and what’s not, and to attend all of the club I can which goes back around to attending as many socials and parties that I’m invited to. It’s all a vicious circle, and I really shouldn’t complain. I love having so many friends. It can just be quite hard, you know, with keeping myself all of time for others but never really looking out for myself…?

Wow, I’m getting all emotional now! What have I drank that’s causing my mind to think in a depressing monologue all of a sudden?! Wow.

Wobbling my way to spare room, I crash into the walls a bit but end up getting to the door within a minute.

Opening the door, I hastily shut it again.

I do not want to go in there again.

I can still hear the girls and boy screaming at me to get lost.

There’s an image I won’t be able to get out of my head for a while.

Turning back around from the spare room I work my way up to my bedroom.

Whenever things get a bit too much in life, Beth will always find me in my bedroom, raking my brain on my computer playing video games – or taking cheesy quizzes on the internet if things get too tough to bare.

My bedroom is always a solitude for us both.

She lives only a couple of doors down from my house, so whenever her parents were fighting or she had another row with someone in the house she will always just come up to my bedroom, cuddle up in my queen size bed and just lie there.  We would either chat about what had happened or just enjoy the silence, lying there and looking up at my ceiling that we painted pink together back when we were twelve and both thought pink was the best colour in the world.

It doesn’t take my blurry vision long to climb the third set of stairs in my house and reach the door to my attic bedroom.

Calling Beth’s name, I open the door to my bedroom and make my way inside.

First I think it’s the drink getting to my head, but then I see the red stains all over my fluffy white carpet, the knife that’s been so conveniently placed in her hand as the girl lays there on the floor not moving.

Beth sits on my bed, covers wrapped around her and blood all over her face, dress and hands.

‘Konnie!’ Beth screams at me. ‘Quick! Get out of here! Quick!’

‘Beth, who is that?’ It’s all I can ask, my body still swaying from the drink… or the nerves… I can’t tell.

‘It’s Jaz,’ Beth tells me, ‘Please Konnie! He might…’

And then everything goes black.

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