From my one-eyed spyglass, I scanned the hallway intently. With the door shut, I wondered if she was lurking somewhere out of my field of vision. I knew that I had to do something soon, because Longhorn was leaving, and if Sweet Cream’s move wasn’t approved, I would be alone and vulnerable. Longhorn wasn’t just vacating the room, he was leaving school. He was departing to be a father, husband, and who knew what else, rather than student. Even though I wasn’t going to admit it to him, I respected his undertaking, because I wasn’t ready to attempt anything that difficult. I was actually going to miss him and his Texas bible-thumping drawl a little.
Throughout the half semester, we had developed a grudging understanding. We had even dismantled the Blue Line partition of tape that had first divided the room. Although Longhorn overly polite attitude toward me was a façade, it was a welcome change from the total disrespect of my friends. They had first started to mock me after they heard the story of my rejection. It was my own fault for mentioning the incident in a half-inebriated state at a crowded party. Equally unfortunate, the story had gained a life of its own, and had become impossibly distorted, some versions having Helen smacking me indignantly in front of a classroom of stunned onlookers.
While drunk, my friends liked to chortle about the story. They also enjoyed proffering advice of how to “move on”. I told them that I didn’t need advice about rejection. But I did approach them when they were sober, seeking advice about my collateral problem. The problem was of course, woman related. It had to do with Scylla. Scylla was also in Advanced Classics, and if Helen was the fairest of the maids in the course, Scylla was her perfect opposite.
Scylla had a moustache, which looked a bid off on a woman. She also had deathly pale skin, quadruple pierced ears, oddly-dyed hair, a grating voice, and strange smelling clothes. While I was sure she was a perfectly nice person on the inside, I had no burning desire to be near her outside of class. However, she had other ideas.
Soon after the date debacle, she approached me, and told me in a matter of minutes that she would not refuse a date from me. In a flustered, but polite manner, I had told her that I was not seeing people socially at that moment. It was a lie, but it was a plausible lie. She nodded, and headed off. I was glad that I had dodged a bullet while maintaining a shred of dignity. I thought no more of it until I read my e-mail later that day. My inbox possessed a message from Scylla, time-stamped a mere ten minutes after our conversation.
The message asked if I would come by her room later to “study”. I unequivocally and uneasily responded that I was busy. The parentheses in the e-mail seemed to portend a double meaning that I did not want to contemplate. Later, I checked my e-mail again. There was another message from Scylla. This time there were no hidden meanings. It was a very indecent proposal. Politely, I responded that I had no interest in a “kinky all night bondage session” with her, and courteously asked her to refrain from similar messages in the future.
Since I considered the disturbing matter closed, I had gone to sleep easily that first night. The next morning, I had five new e-mails. Three were from her. All three had new lewd proposals. Grimacing in horror, I had quickly deleted them. In class that day, I could feel her eyes on me, imagining new bedroom antics. I had to return back to my dorm after class to shower, because the touch of her thoughts made me feel dirty. In my towel, I checked my e-mail and found a new crop of ramblings from her. I deleted the messages, and cleaned my keyboard and screen.