Casey sat up in their sleeping bag. Rubbing the sleep from their eyes, they looked up at the clock that hung on the wall. One PM on the dot.
With a dry mouth and a throbbing head, Casey felt as though they were about to throw up.
“I’m never drinking again.” They vowed.
Rubbing their head they looked around at all the other party goers passed out around them. Not wanting to wake anyone else, Casey slowly rose up onto their hands and knees and crawled away from the group of bodies. Then, with the help of the back of the couch, they slowly rose up onto their feet and steaded themselves. Once they were sure they could walk without falling over, Casey began making their way to the bathroom.
After splashing some water onto their face, Casey opened the door and made their way back into the hall. Then, on their way back to the living room, they ran into Jaxson.
“Hey Casey, you’re awake. I was just about to head out to pick up some aspirin and get some food. Wanna come?” He asked.
Too hungover to speak, Casey simply gave him a thumbs up before following him to the foyer.
“Here, might wanna put these on.” He said as he pulled a pair of sunglasses from his coat pocket and handed them to Casey.
Thanking him, Casey put on the glasses and pulled on their jacket. Then, as Jaxson opened the door, Casey thanked all things holy that Jaxson had given them those glasses. Stepping out into the bright sunlight, Casey and Jaxson made their way to Jaxson’s car and hopped in.
Making their way out of the driveway, Jaxson made a right before looking over at Casey.
“So Casey, where ya from?” He asked, looking straight ahead.
“New York.” Casey replied as they pulled the sun visor down.
“The Big Apple or further north?” He asked.
“Further north. Rochester to be exact.” They said.
Jaxon nodded as he made a right.
“Nice. Been there a couple times. Back in the day I used to run drugs back and forth across the border for my old man.” He said.
Jaxson shook his head.
“Ass.” He said with a scoff.
Jaxson’s statement made Casey think about their own past. Back when Casey was about thirteen they lived in a group home with a kid named Carter. Casey and Carter used to do drug runs for their foster mom and her boyfriend, Mike. The fact that Tammy, their foster mom, was even allowed to have foster children in the first place was mind blowing. Tammy and Mike had a meth lab in the shed behind their house and dealt drugs out of the basement.
All thoughts of Tammy and Mike vanished as Jaxson pulled into the parking lot of Big Frank’s. Making their way inside, they were greeted by Heather, who was already waiting for them with three brown takeout bags. After paying her and leaving a generous tip, he and Casey grabbed the bags and made their way back to the car.
“Do you still keep in touch with any of your foster siblings?” He asked as he backed out of his parking space.
Casey shook their head.
“I wouldn’t even know where to find them.” They said.
Pulling up to a red light, Jaxson stopped and looked over at them.
“This might be a silly question but have you tried social media?” He asked.
“You mean like Facebook or Instagram?” They asked.
Jaxson’s face fell.
“No Casey, I meant social networks as in the movie.” He said sarcastically.
Casey laughed, giving Jaxson’s shoulder a playful shove.
“I guess I could try Instagram. But no one ever uses their real names on there.” said Casey.
“So try Facebook first.” Jaxson suggested.
“Thanks Jaxson.” They said, causing him to smile.
“No problem Case.” He said.
The light turned green and Jaxson stepped on the gas, taking off.