HARLEQUIN

In my over-reactionary eyes, "letting it go" was tantamount to letting myself go. Along with pushing Taylor out of my mind, I also abandoned beauty products, conditioner, skirts, and anything not considered "granny panties." Honestly, I was twenty-eight years old; I was damned to live with twenty dogs (cats are too cliché) and scare small neighborhood children. I could live with that. Really.

As far as joining the human race went, I decided jogging was too active, but I could always sit on a bench, smoke, and watch the joggers. Molly started to realize that not only had I begun smoking (which she liked), but that her cigarette stash was simultaneously diminishing. Suddenly, I no longer had to buy bread every four days.

But I still pilfered her cigarettes out of spite.

By Halloween I had fully regained my addiction to nicotine and my two-pack-a-day lung capacity. In the midst of my eighth cigarette of the day, Molly announced that later that evening we would be having and all-night drinking soiree and all her guests would be dressing up in light of the holiday. Personally, I never understood the one day of the year when it was okay for Molly to wear fewer clothes than she normally did, but as long as I didn't pay for the alcohol I didn't care.

She suggested that I too join her in celebrating the last day of October and I should also dress up. She later added that a costume was the only way she was letting me indulge in her alcohol, especially since she noticed I was smoking all of her cigarettes. Caught in my revenge from the bread-plucking stunt, I complied and found myself staring at my dresser completely hopeless.

After three hours of throwing everything from my closet onto the floor, I discovered the only un-businesslike, un-PMS-like clothing I had. Apparently, I'd hidden it from myself in hopes of never finding it and reliving the horror it brought back, but I found it nonetheless; I'm a shitty closet-arranger.

This pair of fishnets must have been at least ten years old and the holes by the toes and knees were only growing. Embarrassed, I chucked them in the closest trashcan and gave up creative hope. Perched in the center of my room once again, I peered into my closet wondering how long it would take me to put all the clothes back in place (read: I almost left them in the pile on my floor; it wasn't like anyone would ever be crawling into my room anytime soon).

I saw one more item of rejected, hidden apparel stuffed away in the corner and signed. Was I really that desperate for alcohol?

Yes.

Molly skipped into my room, ignoring the mess on the floor. "What are you-" and she spotted the fishnets. "Oh my God, you're throwing these away?!" I watched as she placed her filthy, half smoked cigarette in my coffee cup and reached into the trashcan with her grubby paws. It was like the bread incident all over again. "I'm taking them!" She wandered out of my room again, forgetting her smoke, mumbling something about how they would be just perfect for her costume.

At that, I closed my door and locked it, staring at the forgotten clothing from the corner of my closet. I picked up her discarded cigarette to finish it, facing down my worst Halloween costume idea ever.

I exited my room, hesitant to face the half-drunken crowd with my less than brilliant costume.

"Oh my God, what the hell are you wearing?" Molly staggered over to me, her champagne flute in hand. I never really considered champagne a Halloween beverage, but if she insisted, I wasn't going to argue.

"I think the same question could be applied to you." I stared at the grotesque sight before me. Molly stood in my fishnets, holes strategically placed over the thigh, knee, and calf. The rest of her body was clad in some horrible homemade rendition of an S&M prostitute or a bodice-ripping harlequin novel gone horribly wrong.

"I'm every man's fantasy."

"…Sure Molly."

"And what the hell are you supposed to be?" She picked at the oversized, men's blue button up shirt I was wearing over my backwards skirt. "And where's your other shoe? And what in the fuck have you done to your hair?"

"I'm the post-coital reject."

She threw back the rest of her champagne, her face twisting as the alcohol slid down her throat. "The what?"

It was perfect, really. I had found Taylor's old shirt with the ink stains and missing buttons stuffed in the back of my closet for the past eight years. The costume was genius; I had even gone so far as to ditch one of my shoes.

God damnit, I hadn't let it go.

"Don't worry about it," I helped myself to the Red-Headed Slut shots in the kitchen before mingling with Molly's filthy groupies.

Five shots into the evening, I decided to take my awesome costume and Molly's cigarettes outside for a smoke on the front porch. Despite the cold of the now early November night, I refused to wear a coat; post-coital lousy fucks deserved really cold weather.

"Fuck," I softly cursed, shoving aside a pile of dead leaves with my shoed foot and lighting my cigarette.

I rested there for a minute before my self-pitying was interrupted by Molly's drunken banter. She leaned out of the front door, clutching onto the frame for support, "Kaaaaate, I have a little friend for you!"

Jesus Christ. Any friend of Molly's is automatically an imbecile. "Superb." I finished the cigarette and flicked it into the street.

Molly shoved a drunker-looking man dressed as a Ninja Turtle in my general direction before falling backwards herself.

"Hi," he waved with one hand, making himself cozy next to me on the steps. "I'm Drew. Can I bum a smoke?"

"No."

"Oh." He tugged at his fingers in anxiety. "Can I get you something else to drink?"

"If you insist." The last thing I needed was more alcohol in my blood, but at least if I was sluggishly wasted I wouldn't remember this awkward episode in the morning.

He returned with a stupid smile on his face and two glasses of thematic black punch. "So how do you know Molly?" I suppose he had an amazing story on how he knew her.

"Misfortune," I drank the bitter liquid and reminded myself it was better than talking to Drew.

"I think she's pretty nice."

"Sure you do."

We lingered in silence a little longer, until he stood up and offered me his hand. "You must be freezing, let's go inside." Despite my burning desire to sit in the cold until I literally died, I complied and walked in behind him, refusing to take his hand. He led me into a quieter corner so we could "bond;" evidently, Drew couldn't comprehend the fact that I was in no mood to make a new friend.

"What's your costume supposed to be?" He laughed a little.

"Fuck buddy," I looked away, trying to see where Molly was so I could kick her ass for sticking me with this guy. "And you're a Ninja Turtle?" I hesitated and forced out the last two words, in denial that a fully grown man would have the balls to go out in public dressed like that.

He blushed, "My nephew loves the Ninja Turtles."

"Adorable." Hardly.

"So are you seeing anyone?"

"Drew? Is that your name, Drew?" He grinned and nodded, obviously counting down the seconds until he could throw me on the ground and violate me in three different languages. "Fuck off." I shoved my half empty drink into his green gloved hands and went to kick Molly's scantily clad ass.

I found her in the kitchen, one of her legs blocking the exit from an innocent and frightened young man. She was too drunk to hear me grab the fork from the drawer and come up behind her. It wasn't until I ran the fork down the back of her leg and liberated my fishnet hose that she started yelling and chasing after me with her black leather whip and the frightened young man ran for the door.