Indie Author Answers #19: Time Jumping Confusion

Tip of the week

Just some podcasts I listen to that you guys might like: Sell More Books Show, Self-Publishing Podcast, The Creative Penn, The Author Biz, Writing Excuses, Self Publishing Questions, Rocking Self Publishing

Now lets do the last chapter of part 1!

22: Alex


The morning after it happened, Alex stumbled into a deli just down the street from Heather’s apartment to purchase a breakfast burrito. He had sunglasses on to shield him from the light, and for some reason, a random Sublime song in his head, which was still somewhat full of Xanax jelly from the day before. He had an unclear memory of raiding Heather’s fridge at some point in the night, but could not distinguish his memories from dreams he may have had. Regardless, he woke up ravenous and made a quick departure from her apartment to get food. She had been asleep in the bed, wearing almost nothing. Tantalizing, even with a disheveled bed-head and a dabble of drool on her pillow.

In her living room, she had kissed him, her mouth warm and tasting of bourbon. She suckled his neck and through his haze, Alex vaguely sensed of danger, but her wet mouth on his neck was perhaps the most enticing sensation of his life. He did not want it to stop.

She pulled his shirt over his head, and she took off her top and his heavy hands rose through the sea to grasp her rubbery breasts. Feeling their soft weight, now he had more energy. Still, the idea that he should not be doing this gnawed at him, and he should tell her to stop, so he opened his mouth to protest but then her hands went down his pants and that ended any remaining higher brain functions. Her flexible fingers washed away any reservations he might have had knocking around.

“I want you,” she said.

“Okay,” he slurred, barely in English.

She stumbled to her feet, then whipped off her stretchy pants in one quick motion and pulled him by the arm into her bedroom. She hopped to her nightstand, opened the drawer and retrieved a pack of condoms. Alex swayed, trying to keep his balance. Heather tore the package open and rolled the condom over her thumb.

She fell onto a pile of clothes on the floor, then rolled over onto her back and beckoned him. With one hand, she slid down her panties while she placed the other on Alex’s lower back, pulling him toward her. With his heavy hands, jelly brain, and droopy eyes, Alex had sloppy and half-awake sex on the dirty-clothes-laden floor with his best friend’s girlfriend.

He completely avoided Brian the day after. The day after that, remnants of the Xanax still lubricated his thoughts, but he had returned to clarity. For the most part. Alex went to the Hill to get another breakfast burrito before class, and to test Heather’s statement that Wiles ordered coffee every morning from Buchanan’s. Alex wanted more Xanax, and figured Wiles would know where to find some. Brian probably would not get something like that for him. Even if Brian would, Alex did not think he could look Brian in the eyes.

After Alex got his food, he wandered down the Hill towards the coffee shop, and indeed, there was the blue Jeep that had been the point of contention in the argument at the keg party. Alex entered Buchanan’s, where Wiles was ordering his coffee. When Wiles took a seat, Alex approached him.

“Excuse me, Derek?”

Wiles blinked at him. “Yeah, who are you?”

“I’m Alex. We met at Miguel’s house, that night when you and that fat guy were getting into it in the living room?”

“Right, right, I know you. You’re Connelly’s boy.”

Alex did not like the label. “He lives on my floor,” Alex said.

Wiles sat back in his chair, and sipped his coffee while surveying Alex in a way that felt like a dissection. Alex tried to keep a poker face. “This is kinda funny,” Wiles said. “I was just thinking about you the other day.”

“You were thinking about me?”

Alex’s phone buzzed, and he peeked at it. A text message from Heather: he knows.

Wiles pointed at the burrito. “That place any good?”

“Oh yeah,” Alex said, “best burritos on the Hill. Get the bacon and egg, though. The sausage is so greasy it makes the tortillas tear apart.”

“Can I trust you?” Wiles said.

The sudden topic change caused Alex’s head involuntarily to jerk. Wiles had a devious tint to his eyes and he seemed like the sort who would steal your wallet and not think twice about it. Just talking to him challenged Alex. “Sure, dude, why, what’s the problem?”

“Let’s step outside.”

They exited the coffee shop and had a seat at a patio table. Alex thought about Heather’s text message. Did she mean that Brian knows? That can’t be what she means. He ate his burrito as Wiles continued. “Connelly told me that you’re friends with a lot of people in your dorms. He said you’re a popular guy.”

“I guess,” Alex said. “Some of them are chumps, but you could say I’ve met a lot of people.”

“You live in the one off Farrand field; the U-shaped light-brick one, right?”


“Well, here’s the deal. There’s a guy who lives on your floor in your dorm. I need to get him something. But the problem is this other guy who lives on your floor. I can’t have him see me.”

“Well, why can’t you ask Brian to do it?”

“Connelly can’t know about this. He doesn’t mess around with this stuff.”

“What stuff?”

“Don’t worry about the details. It’s just a little white envelope. I just need to know if I can give it to you and trust you to give it to this guy. That’s all.”

Alex, chewing his burrito, considered it. He swallowed, and moved his tongue over his sweater-coated teeth, which he had not brushed since yesterday morning. Dirty teeth disgusted him. Wiles’ task seemed easy enough, although Alex imagined that the contents of the envelope would land him before J-Board for certain. Still, the idea excited him. “Yeah, I’m in,” he said.

“That’s what I like to hear.” Wiles pushed a pen and a piece of paper towards Alex. “Write down your number.”

Alex did so and slid the paper back across the table. “Alright, son,” Wiles said, “remember: this is all on the D.L. as far as Connelly knows. Might be a minute before I call you. But when it’s all ready, I’ll let you know.”

And just like that, Wiles backed away from the table, pulled the hood of his sweatshirt up over his head, and walked away. Alex, his head swimming from his first full-on Derek Wiles Experience, finished off the last bite of burrito and crumpled the wrapper into a ball. He noticed the time on his watch.

Shit, I’m late for class.