Another Terribleminds challenge story. Title is based on a randomly picked cocktail. Oh, and warning, this one gets a little weird and gross.
– – – Bittersweet with a Twist – – –
David sat at the end of the bar, nursing his drink and wallowing. He figured he must look like one of those old townies, minus the old. He turned and raised his glass toward Jasmine. A toast to his dancing roommate, the birthday girl. His smile must have looked so fake. Because it was. He felt a drunk-heavy hand pat him on the shoulder. A friend of Jasmine’s? The guy grinned wide and danced in place.
“How can anyone be sad at Jazzy’s bash? You’re defying the laws of physics, man.”
“Call up NASA. Being their lab rat’d better than what I’ve got now.”
The guy laughed.
“I like you. Got a solution to your little problem.”
He pulled a plastic pouch out of his jacket and handed it to David. It was dark brown, with fancy white script printed on one side.
“I doubt chocolate is going to fix this. But thanks.”
“No. No! Not chocolate. Bittersweet. When you’re feeling low and full of what might have been, take one of those. Just watch out for the twist!”
David turned the pouch over in his hand. He felt three, hard squares inside. He stared at the Bittersweet, wondering just how this apparently street-illegal anti-depressant might work. He turned to the guy behind him.
“What’s the twist?”
But, he was alone again. He caught Jasmine’s eye, and felt a lump in his throat. He downed the rest of his drink and headed for the bathroom. The stall looked like an atomic bomb had been dropped in it, but this was the sort of thing that needed privacy. He walked by the two dudes at the urinals, and closed the door. He ripped the pouch open with his teeth. Two of the little squares fell straight into the toilet. With his luck, he was surprised he didn’t lose them all.
He pulled the last pill out of the package. It was modeled to look like chocolate, with a happy face imprinted on the top. David stared at the pill and frowned.
“You had better not be habit forming.”
One last deep breath, wish for a cup of water, then down the hatch.
At first, he didn’t feel anything. He wasn’t sure what he should feel. Just… better, somehow. He just wanted to stop feeling like-
“I’ve ruined any chance with her. I never told her and now I’ll be alone forever.”
David slammed his mouth shut. Did he really say that out loud? There was a murmuring snicker from the urinals. Yeah, he’d said it out loud. He could feel sweat beading at his temples. His stomach churned. But, then, a giggle burst out. Mid-laugh, he blurted out again.
“I’m inadequate at my job. My coworkers hate me. They know I’m faking it. I’ll probably be fired within the month.”
The two other guys left in a hurry. His stomach felt worse. His brain felt better. He felt a rush of pure, unabashed joy wash over him. Whatever was happening, it worked. He was smiling. If he could control his mouth, he might just be able to join the party out in the bar. Really, truly, join the party.
“My anxiety around more than three people at once is crippling. If it wasn’t for Jasmine, I’d never step foot in a place like this.”
Between the fits of laughter, and the crippling stomach pain, David collapsed onto the floor. The piss-stained tile reeked, but he couldn’t stop smiling. He felt like if he could stand right now, he could do anything. Tell Jasmine he loved her in front of her new boyfriend. Land on Mars. Become President of the United States. Hell, become Emperor of Earth!
“I’ve drifted away from every relationship that truly matters! I hate myself as a human being!”
He writhed on the floor. Every confession made him feel that much worse and that much better. He gripped the metal supports of the stall, bracing himself for either the best orgasm of his life, or the worse puke anyone ever had, ever.
It was the latter.
His throat was a hose, spraying bile and green chunks onto the filthy floor. His eyes watered. He could barely see, but he swore he hadn’t had anything green that day. They looked like lime rinds, curled and… wriggling. He had to be hallucinating. They looked alive. He slapped at them, completely horrified but still grinning like a madman. Watch out for the twist. He was going to kill Jasmine’s drug dealer friend if he ever saw him again.
The twisting, green, wormy creatures disappeared one by one down the drain. David checked his hand. A pool of emerald slime clung to his palm. Maybe it wasn’t real. Hadn’t there been a green-dyed pineapple on that cocktail? Maybe? It couldn’t be real. He laughed again.
He stood up, cleaned himself up, and made his way for the dance floor. Maybe he’d hug Jasmine’s friend instead.