February 6th, 2009 / 3:41 pm
Web Hype

Barry, Jereme and pr at the AWP: An Htmlgiant Original

"I love you, Jereme."

The day of trolling tables and tables in a convention center is over. It was fun, but now the real fun begins. We started drinking at dinner. Now, it is late. Like, two in the morning. We are all in a suite, in Blake Butler’s suite. Blake has a suite because he is famous. The light is dim and yellowish. Sounds of delicate laughter and glasses tinkling with booze abound. I am sitting on a couch, the windows behind me, but I can feel Chicago glittering below. Jereme is next to me. Sitting there on the couch, next to each other, it no longer matters that I have an Amazonian, East German discus thrower vibe to me, because when I am sitting, it hides that aspect of me (as opposed to standing). Being next to Jereme is like being next to warmth. Being next to Jereme is like wanting to hold a baby bird in my hands and I’m afraid I won’t do it right, because it is so delicate. But I want to, I want to do it right, I feel I’ve never wanted anything so badly in all my life. I also am afraid he might get angry at me and that would crush me. But everything is good. He is not angry. He has beautiful eyes. We are nicely drunk, not yet shit-faced and I haven’t blacked out yet. My right shoulder is touching Jereme’s left shoulder. I can smell him. He smells like cigars and whiskey and a man’s warmed skin. I have all this love flowing from me, from my chest, from where my heart is, toward Jereme. He lets me touch his beard. It is soft, the way longish beards are, not scratchy. It is thick and comforting. I stroke it with my hand. Then I lean in, and rub my cheek on his beard. This is what I am doing when Barry walks up to us, towering above us, interrupting our soft, kind moment.

“pr.”

“Yes?”

“That’s enough.”

"Don't be mad at me, Barry."

“What?” I suddenly realize I am much drunker than I thought, like usual. But I still haven’t blacked out.

“We’re just talking.”

“pr, man, I don’t want to do this but you asked me earlier to look out for you.”

“We’re just talking.”

“You said, ‘Barry, if I get really drunk, don’t let me make out with anyone. I would die from guilt and my husband would kill me.’ Remember? At dinner tonight?”

“We’re just talking.”

“Get up.”

“We’re just talking.”

“Get up. I’m taking you back to your room.”

At the other end of the couch, Blake starts humping the armrest.

“We’re just talkiiiinn….”

Barry grabs my arm and I stagger up. Man, I’m shitfaced, like usual, but I am not in the safety of my home! Whoah! Suddenly, I am frightened of myself.

“Bye, Jereme,” I say.

“Goodnight, pr.”

“I love you, Jereme.”
I love YOU, pr.”

“I love you so much, Jereme.”

“I love YOU.”

“OK, that’s enough, pr, come on.” Barry has a firm hand on my elbow and leads me toward the door. I look over my shoulder, back at Jereme. I love turning my head over my shoulder and looking back at a dude, cause then I hope I can catch them checking out my ass.

“I love you Jeremeeee!!!”

Barry shuts the door behind us before I can see if Jereme was checking out my ass so I am disappointed and we are in the hall. The hall is quiet and boring and I am sad to be there, petulant, like a twelve year old, and angry at Barry. I miss Jereme’s smell and his beard.

“Come on, pr. Let’s go.”

Barry leads me down the hall to the elevator. We don’t talk. Barry pushes the down button. I look at him. He looks so, so, so…stern. I get sort of excited by his sternness. I also really like elevators, so when the elevator door opens, my mood has miraculously lifted.

“Hi, Barry,” I say, giggling a tiny bit.

“pr.” Barry rolls his eyes.

“I like elevators.”
“Oh, pr, what am I going to do with you?”

“I love you, Barry.”

“I love you too, pr. You are hammered.”

“I’m always hammered. I love you. I love being hammered. Hammer, hammer, hammer…” I trail off.

The elevator is going down and not only dudes get that special feeling in their groin area when an elevator goes up and down fast, but so do the ladies. I get that, lifty, tickly vibe in my crotch.

“I love you, Barry.”

“I love you, too, pr.”

Suddenly, I almost fall and Barry catches me. He is so THICK. It’s like being caught by a tree. I am in heaven. I want to stay there forever.

“I love you, Barry.”

“I love you too, pr. Now come on, let’s go, we’re here.”

We are on the fourth floor because I am not famous. We walk to my room.

“Don’t be mad at me, Barry.”

“I’m not mad at you.”

“I love you, Barry. I’m drunk.”

“I know, sweetheart. We’re getting you to bed.”

“I love you so much, Barry.”

“pr, pr…”

Barry takes my key out of my bag and opens the door for me.“OK, girlycakes here we are. Goodnight, pr.”

“Let’s be friends, Barry.”

“We are friends, kitten.”

I lean into him, into his thick, boxer’s neck. “Let’s be special friends, Barry,” I whisper.

“Goodnight, pr.” He give me a little shove into my room.

“Don’t leave me!”

“Baby girl, you’re fine. Just go to sleep.”

“Come in! Pleeeeaaase.”

Barry hugs me and I feel like I am being crushed in the best possible way. Then he pulls back. “Goodnight, you.”

“Pleeeeeasse! Please, please, please…I love you!! Wait, no, no, no, don’t go…”

Barry shuts the door. I hear a “Goodnight, pr” and the faint noise of footsteps walking away.

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