"I wonder where she is."
They scan the room looking for the third part of their trio.
"I dunno." She shrugged, "She said, she was here and that she needed a ride."
They continue to scan the room in futility.
"I know she's here." He tries to let logic solve their problem, "I saw her car when we drove up."
One of them releases a sigh of frustration or exasperation. "This is the third time this month."
"So, who was it this time?" the taller of the pair asks.
The shorter of the pair shrugs and shakes her head, "Who knows?"
The pair walks through the room. They see a red haired person coming towards them. The taller of the two greets her, "Hey Wendy. Where's…"
Wendy cuts them off, "Thank you guys for coming." Wendy smiles and sighs in relief. She turns and leads them into her kitchen. "She's in here…I've been keeping an eye on her." Their eyes fall to the sight at the kitchen table.
It's their third part and she's sitting at the table with her head down on her folded arm and a beer can in the other. The pair looks at their friend with solemn faces. Their thoughts are interrupted… probably for the better. "You guys should've been here… It was an awesome party… at least until this happened." Wendy explains as she looks upon the sad sight from a distance at her refrigerator.
The pair looks a little put off, however, they put that aside and focus on their friend, who is their top priority. "What happened?" Wendy doesn't know who asked but she figured that it wasn't important.
"Well, everything was goin' fine until she got a couple of drinks in her." Wendy shuts her eyes. The pair can't discern whether it's because of pain of the memory or just trying to remember at all. The pair's thoughts were again interrupted, "Then, it was like she couldn't stop. She, then, proceeded to try to pick fights with a couple of girls and a guy."
"Which guy?" one of the pair asked. Again Wendy is too distracted to notice which one. She guessed it was the girl.
"Greg." Another sigh could be heard from one of the pair. It could've been either of them. To be honest, they all had a propensity for sighing. She decides to continue, "Anyway, she started saying something about you two, and love, and perfect… it was really hard to understand her through her slurred speech and crying." The pair suddenly became a little anxious. The female slid away as she looked at the male who had paled a little bit. Ignoring this sight, Wendy continued yet again, "At that point, we decided to call it a night and I sent everybody home. That's why some of the cars are still here despite the empty house." The pair nods and she looks at the beer can in the third's hand, "I guess that while I was calling cabs and other rides for people who were too drunk to get themselves home; she came in here and got another." They can only gaze at their friend with sad and/or thoughtful expressions. "Like I said… you guys should've been here… maybe you could've stopped all this." Wendy leans against the refrigerator door.
"What! Freddie, she's an ad…" The girl was interrupted.
"I know… she's an adult, but she's still our friend." He turns to Wendy, "Thanks for calling." Freddie smiles in gratitude. And his friend goes to figure out how to proceed from here.
Wendy returns his smile, "Of course…" The pair rejoins them having figured out a course of action. Now, ready to go, she nudges Freddie. He winces and she shakes her head. Wendy observes this sight, "You know… her words were slurred and difficult to understand but if she was saying what I think she was saying then… I think she might be right." The pair chooses to ignore the words of their old friend, instead of becoming self-conscious once again.
"C'mon Freddie, help me get her to my car." Freddie moves to help her, "We share an apartment so I'll take her in your car. You can drive hers, since you know how to drive stick." She slings their friend's arm over her shoulder.
"Ok." He does the same.
They thank Wendy and leave her place. Once they reach the apartment building, they help the third to the couch. "I'll just go get her a blanket. Where do you guys keep the extra blankets?"
"Why not just get the ones from off of her bed?"
Freddie, once again, put his logic to work. "Well, if she throws up then she'll have to go through a lot of trouble washing sheets and redoing her bed. This way…"
Being worried about her friend she ceased to care about what he was rambling on about, "Whatever… I don't know where they are."
He sighs, "Ok." He disappears down the hallway.
The female of the pair turns on the tv and quickly mutes it, as to not wake up her friend, who, at this point will probably have a hangover the size of Brazil whenever she decides to wake up.
"Ugh." The third stirs and awakes.
"Well, hello there."
"Ugh… what time is it?" the third places a hand on her forehead.
"It is…" the other, looks at her watch, "… 12:45 in the morning."
"Why is it so early?" the third asks, the events of the previous few hours, obviously still a little hazy.
"You shut down another one."
Suddenly a crash could be heard from the back of the apartment. "Ahh! Stupid pillows!"
"Who's with you?"
"I brought Freddie along to help me."
"I swear if you're not gonna use 'em…" Freddie looks and sees the third awake on the couch, "… Oh, hey, you're up." He tosses the blankets to the sober of the two that sat on couch. "How you feelin'?" His only answer was an agonized groan. "That bad, huh? I'll go make some coffee."
"I'll take mine with one milk and two sugars." The sober called to Freddie.
"What am I… wearing a 'Thanks a Latte' uniform?" He grumbled as he went into the kitchen.
The sober, did hear him, "Imma have to go and get it myself." She moved to raise herself from the couch.
"You know he'll get it for you." The third's voice sounds a little sad.
"I know. He still fears me a lil bit." She returns to her seat next to her friend, "I was gonna force him to make it." She sees her friend's despondent look. "So… you wanna tell me about it?"
"I tried, Sam, I really did." Sam nods her head and pats her friend on the back, "I wanted Greg to be 'Mr. right'. But I saw him makin' out with that horse-faced skank, Jocelyn." Sam wanted to compliment her friend on her minor abandonment of decorum that would, usually, keep her friend from talking bad about anyone. She also wanted to find whoever this Jocelyn skank was and rip her 'horse-face', clean off. As far as Greg goes… as soon as Carly showed her who Greg was she would call her Uncle Carmine and have him "dealt with". Left with the task at hand, Sam decided to try to be the voice of reason.
"No offense Carly, but that's the third 'Mr. Right' this month."
"So… What's your point?"
Sam, guessing that her friend was still under the influence, decided to ignore the abrasiveness of her friend's statement. "My point is… that you should be patient."
"That's easy for you to say." Carly tries to rise to her feet but falls back to her seat. After repeating the process several times she decides to stay on the couch. "You've already found your 'Mr. Right'." Upon finishing her statement, Carly started to cry.
Sam, being a little uncomfortable with her new position as comforter, placed and arm around her best friend's shoulder. Freddie enters the room just in time to witness the scene. Sam decides that it would be better if she handles this alone. "Freddie, could you give us a minute?"
Freddie is initially put off by her request. After all, Carly is his friend as well. Upon further observation of the situation he gives in and nods. "Sure. I'm just gonna head to the store, I just remembered that I need some things for my place." Sam directs her attention back to her friend. Out of the corner of her eye, she can see Freddie place something on the table and grab her car keys off of the table.
He leaves the room and looks at his watch. What place is open at 1:30 in the morning? Grumbling to his self once more he got into the blonde's car and drove off into the night in search of a way to waste what he guessed should be an hour or so.
Sam watched the door for a bit after it had been closed. She then remembered her friend's statement. "Carly, trust me, I haven't found 'Mr. Right'." She averted her gaze to the ground to hide her disappointment.
Carly hits the couch cushion in frustration, releasing a sigh. "Yes you have, Sam. You know you have. you just don't realize it yet." She lets her shoulders sag in defeat.
Sam, being thoroughly confused at her friends crazy statement, figured that she must still be drunk… maybe even more so than she previously thought. She picks up one of the coffee mugs off of the table and hands it to Carly.
Carly takes a sip and hands it back to Sam. "This one is yours."Sam takes the mug and takes a sip. She reaches over and hands Carly the other cup of coffee. She takes another sip.
It tastes like her coffee; the coffee that Freddie bought for her when she forced him to ditch school because he had just gotten his car. He took her to a coffee shop instead of their regular hang out. Now, ever since then, when the trio was together they would go to 'The Groovy Smoothie', but when it was just the two of them they would go to 'Thanks a Latte'. Not as a date or anything, but to be two friends chatting over a cup coffee.
When they graduated, they decided to let Carly in on their little secret. She took this secret a lot better than the first one. They shared their first drink together as high school graduates. That was one of only two times that Carly had accompanied them to the coffee shop. The other time was when Sam and Carly had moved out of their places and decided to share an apartment. Freddie had moved out a couple of months before they did, but they wanted to celebrate the occasion as a group.
Carly had decided to leave the two to have their ritual… woe be unto him/her that interrupts a Sam and Freddie ritual, but, being in their waning college years, Sam looked forward to sharing a cup of coffee with her two friends for the third time.
She takes another sip of the coffee.
It was her coffee; simple yet… so complete… so… utterly… satisfying. The other two never ordered what she ordered. Carly felt that it was a little too boring, and Freddie didn't like its bitter taste so he never really thought to add anything to it. The original taste had put him off. He always ordered a hot chocolate, simple in its own right, but I didn't have the allure of her coffee. Carly always ordered whatever was new or something that had at least three different things in the title. But her order; 'coffee, one milk, two sugars', it was what she adored.
One mug, three parts… it was so much like her world. One world, three parts; that's all she had to depend on. She hated teachers as well as most other people in the world. She supposed that her sister might have her qualities but she never had an opportunity to try. She certainly couldn't depend on her mother. But she could depend on; one milk and two sugars. She could depend on Carly, Freddie, and herself… and she figures that, that is all she really has… all she really wants… that is all that she really needs.
"You see? You get that look on your face every time you drink it." Carly's voice pulled Sam out of her thoughts. "You are the most violent person I've ever known, even if you've mellowed out a little."
"Why, thank you." Sam smiles with a genuine appreciation of her friend's recognition, that she's still got it.
"But when you drink it, you look so peaceful… like you couldn't hurt a fly, even if you wanted to. Freddie told me that you've always gotten that look on your face; even when you had it for the first time." Sam tilted her head to the side and wore a confused expression. "He made a note that you were happy and content when you had that coffee." Sam froze a little bit.
Freddie noticed that she was happy? Freddie wanted her to be happy? I mean, sure, they didn't fight as much anymore, but to actually desire one's happiness… moreover the happiness of your nemesis? But, as sure as she loved ham, Carly said through her own lips, that Freddie made a note of her feelings. Freddie cared… about her. Sam found herself smiling.
Carly's voice brings Sam back to the task at hand. "You're lucky, Sam. You've found 'Mr. Right' and you know it." Carly, with a little more grace, rose from her place on the couch and went to her room, "Thanks for staying up with me and looking after me, you really are a great friend." She smiles and Sam smiles back.
"Any time, kid." Sam turns back to the TV.
"And tell Freddie I said thank you." Sam hears the girl's door push close.
Sam chuckles to herself, "She knows I'm not gonna do that." The mention of Freddie got her thinking.
Perhaps there was a reason that she had never been interested in any one else. They tried… of course they tried. She even went on dates with a couple of them, but none of them were right and she knew it. No guy had the allure that he had. No guy had the effect on her that he did. No guy's smile could lighten her mind, no guy's voice could speak to her soul, and no guy's eyes could look into her heart. There was only one…
"Hey…" Freddie reentered the apartment, "… Where's Carly?"
"She's in her room, asleep."
Back in her room with her ear against her bedroom door, Carly heard him re-enter and called Wendy. "Thanks for helping me do this." She had to whisper because when they weren't arguing with each other they were very attentive.
"You mean, they actually bought it?"
"Yeah, they don't suspect a thing."
"I had my doubts after you told me that the first two attempts had failed because she decided to get you herself."
"Yeah. Luckily, you were able to convince her that she needed help."
"I was even more doubtful, when you told me you were supposed to be drunk. I never thought that they would believe it."
"Yeah, me… drinking… I hate the smell of the stuff."
"Well, I'm glad it worked out."
"Me too. I'll see you later."
"Later." Carly hangs up the phone and goes to bed.
Back in the front of the apartment, Sam and Freddie had been watching TV for about ten minutes. Sam decides to break the silence, "So… you crashin' here or are you walkin' home?" Freddie rose an eyebrow as if to ask why he wasn't going to his place, "'Cuz at three in the morning, I'm not takin' you anywhere."
Freddie rolled his eyes and turned back to whatever show this was, "Fine, I'll crash on the couch." He engrossed himself in what looked like a TV show from the early 2000's, "So what do ya say we go out for a cup of coffee in the morning."
Sam smiles again, "I'd like that."
They say that if you look hard enough for something then you'll find it. Sam figured that the saying didn't really apply to everything. She felt that sometimes you only find something when you're not looking for it. That it'll come up on you when you least expect it. Like when you're comforting your friend in her time of need, or even… when you're sitting in your perfect world, talking with its most important part, drinking your perfect drink… café au lait, with two sugars.