Jenney's Asshole Ch. 03byPhantasy_Star©
Episode 3: "The Commons"
Friday was considerably muggy. As she scooted across the sweeping crosswalk, Jenney felt her possessions rumble about inside her backpack: textbooks, writing supplies, manga comics, chapstick, a bag of kale chips, cell phone, her inhaler, and items recently acquired from the local drug store per her roommate's instructions—a new tube of KY Jelly, and a box of Magnum XL condoms.
Havemeyer road separated the dorms from the large Humanities building, and this particular day its pavement was sizzling hot from being baked in the sun all morning. Crossing it, she ducked into the shade of a long row of trees along the path. Her complexion was simply not compatible with weather like this. Even though she's applied SPF-45 before leaving her room, it still felt inadequate. Beads of moisture trickled down her brow.
It wasn't just the heat making her sweat; she knew what she had to do. The tumult of student life rattled around her as she swiftly walked through the spacious front atrium of the building.
She hung her head and averted any possible eye contact with her peers. She hadn't yet made many friends besides Nicole, but now was not really the time to make any new ones. The sooner I can get this over with, the better, she thought as she walked up the stairs to the second floor.
Legal Ethics class, room 289. She stood outside of the doorway, stuffing her hands into the pockets of her bluejeans and leaning anxiously against the wall. She squinted at the incoming cloud of students filtering in, trying to spot the boy she'd been internet-stalking for the past few hours.
Maybe if I just smile at him when he walks in, he'll know what to do next, she thought to herself as her heart speeded. She suddenly felt faint as someone at the end of the hall turned the corner. It was Merv, the boy she'd reluctantly been put up to "do".
He was walking with two of his buddies. One guy was unfamiliar; a lanky boy with a neatly-cut afro and a pair of scraggly mutton chops. The other she recognized as the husky, mocha-complected boy who sat rather loyally next to Merv in class, though she couldn't recall his name. His wide brown eyes seemed to dodge about rapidly as he walked, as if searching for conversational fodder at every turn.
The three of them joked enthusiastically with one another as they approached the classroom door. The third guy hovering on their periphery seemed more quiet and reserved—almost pensive—but smiled and nodded knowingly his head as he listened to their chatter, and they seemed to appreciate his presence.
Merv himself, however, eclipsed them both. Though she'd absently noticed it before, he was even more striking in person. The pixellated flash photos she'd seen plastered about his profile page simply didn't do him justice.
As the three of them approached door, they stopped abruptly. They seemed to be unaware of her. Amidst a series of barely intelligible in-jokes, one of them rather enthusiastically mentioned something about a party.
The skinny quiet guy then bid them farewell with some fist-bumps, and quickly disappeared around the opposite corner. She felt air rise in her chest and she began to panic as the remaining two turned in her direction. She suddenly felt their eyes upon her.
Just smile! Just look up and smile at them! She thought, but instead she found herself slinking along the wall and darting into the crowded and still-unsettled classroom.
"God damn," she heard Merv's buddy utter from behind her, followed by a stifled chuckle. She knew what it was about—her big rear end.
While she'd been incrementally learning to make peace with her anatomy, the attention it garnered was typically from guys whom she found little attraction to. Perhaps it was telling, then, that Merv himself didn't appear to chime in. Instead, he suddenly appeared rather perturbed by his friend's indiscretion, regarding his buddy with a disapproving look.
"Yo, shut up and sit down, Zaid. You know she can probably hear your ignorant ass," Merv said in a hushed hiss as he passed Jenney. He briefly looked down at her with his potently dark eyes as he moved, flashing her a sincerely apologetic look, and then sat down a few desks behind her.
She felt a rush as the lingering effect of his gaze started to melt her psyche. God, he's actually really hot, she thought to herself confusedly.
A sensual rush erupted underneath her bluejeans. Tiny pinpricks of excitement shot through her crotch and nipples. Most telling, she found that her sweaty teenage anus began rapidly winking—perhaps in anticipation of the unknown.
She heard Merv bopping his friend—whose name she now knew—on the back of his head lightly in disapproval one more time, unaware of her arousal. "Dumbass," he repeated again.
"I'm just sayin', man!...damn...white girls got booty now, too?" Zaid mused to himself gleefully before shutting up, though he continued to snicker to himself under his breath for a moment.
Although the chaos and noise of the still-unsettled classroom rendered their exchange obscure, she couldn't help but pull the back of her t-shirt down as far as she could and bury her face in her hands.
Well, I screwed that up, Jenney thought as she tapped her pen on the open notebook in front of her.
"So, you must be pretty butthurt right now, huh?"
Startled, the young girl looked up from her Chemistry book. Her roommate stood there in the doorway of their tiny room, grinning.
"You heard me," Nicole said, pulling out the small clip fastening her curly web of black hair to the side of her head. "I said you must be pretty butthurt, right?" she repeated as she flicked the tiny steel object directly at Jenney, hitting her target on the forehead with olympic precision.
"Ow!" Jenney exclaimed as the steel clip bounced off her face. "Nicole! Don't do that!" she said, suddenly boiling with aggravation.
"Oooh ow ow, don't do that, wahh wahh," Nicole taunted back in an exaggerated snivel approximating Jenney's voice. She closed the door and hung up her leather jacket. "Fuck, you're so whiny. Answer my question, freakybutt. So did you do those black guys?"
Jenney suddenly took an increased interest in the reading material laid in front of her. While she had been legitimately studying before her roommate showed up, she had been doing so casually; now it suddenly felt pressing. "Can I please tell you about it later, Nicole? I really gotta study tonight, got an Organic Chemistry test tomorrow, okay?" In actuality the test was not for a week, and the lie showed on her perennially honest face.
"Just tell me what happened, silly," Nicole said, as she lit a cigarette and walked over to the window with feigned weariness.
"I uh, didn't do it yet."
Nicole's brow creased, but she remained silent, taking another drag as she peered out the window, waiting for an elaboration. "Uh, like," Jenney continued, flipping through the pages of her book rapidly and without purpose. "I was gonna say hi to them, but then I got shy. And uh, didn't."
Nicole simmered, her face scrunching in dissatisfaction. Out of pure spite, she employed a few more moments of more brutal silence in response. Like Ms. Adara, she had figured out that this girl did not fare well against it.
"I'm sorry," Jenney squeaked, feeling an intangible weight bear down on her psyche.
More dreaded silence. Puffs of bittersweet smoke exited Nicole's prominent nose, and then her lips, billowing outwards like dragon's breath. Jenney suddenly felt fear squiggle through her heart. "You better fuck them before this weekend's over, or your precious undies are gone forever. I don't want to have to explain 'em if someone finds them in my car, so I've got to get them out of my hair way or another."
"I'm sorry, I—"
"Holy hell. Do you ever stop friggin' apologizing? Look freakybutt, It's your choice. You want to be a little chaste nerd your whole life, that's fine. I'll just chuck those weird plug-undies of yours straight into the trash compactor down the hall. Just watch."
"No! Don't do that, please," Jenney begged, slamming her book shut and sitting up in her bed. Her powder-blue pajamas hung loosely on her curvaceous body. Her modestly-sized, nearly milk-white breasts were almost visible through an unbuttoned sliver. Nicole caught them out of the corner of her eye, admiring them, but said nothing. "I promise I'll do it this weekend. In the hallway, I heard them talking about a party..."
"Ohh yeah, I heard about that. It's uh, a black party. You know, like a Black Student Union thing they have every—oh wait, freaky! That's perfect! Why didn't I think of that before?"
Nicole reached into her back pocket, retrieving her iPhone and tapping away on it rapidly. "Oh wow, that's tonight at Messer Hall South, starting at 8:30 pm. That's only two hours from now. You'll be surrounded by big black ones there. They'll probably run a train on your thick ass."
"Oh God," Jenney murmured, her eyes momentarily defocusing behind her heavy lenses. Perverse and half-formed images flashed through her mind. In lieu of any strong real-life reference points, they were mostly amalgams of the few pornographic images she'd seen online, though she had a hard time picturing herself within them.
"But whatever you do, make sure Merv is one of them. That's the deal, since I know who he is and can confirm he did the deed. Now you better start dolling yourself up, 'cause it's going to be a rough day at the orifice, haha."
"Remember when you said you'd give me a few shots of whiskey so I'm not jumpy..."
The humidity lingered even after sundown, leaving the darkened campus enveloped in a sultry haze. Jenney reached the summit of Havemeyer road, the horizon line of darkened trees stretching out in a panorama. She was still buzzed from the Maker's Mark shots. Clutching her purse, she felt its contents. She felt the tube. She felt the black box.
A few yards down the path, she could see the dead-end lot that curved towards Messer Hall. It was a large, flat glassed-roofed structure that sat in the perpetual shade of a larger, boarded-up and seemingly forgotten campus building.
As such, the hall avoided the slow bake that gripped much of the college that day, and maintained a refreshing coolness. As she walked through the front gate, she could immediately feel the difference, and she smiled, swiping a bit of sweat from her temple.
The seismic thudding of urban dance music rumbled somewhere beneath her feet as she took a few tentative steps across the boardwalk that ran above one of the lower dance rooms. She looked down, seeing the large mass of students congregating and socializing beneath her, some gyrating to the droning rhythm, some standing in clusters and chatting exuberantly.
Descending a steep stairway, she began to hear husky chatter amidst the heavy bass. As her two smooth, snowflake-pale legs emerged at the top of the final flight leading down into the main quarters, she heard the chatter stop, and knew immediately she must have drawn attention to herself.
The ripe scent of marijuana filled her nostrils. Taking a few more steps down, she came eye-to-eye with three hooded boys who were quickly placing a pungent joint out of sight. She didn't know any of them. They looked relatively friendly, if a bit unsure how to react to her.
"Oh hi!" she said, smiling at the slightly puzzled but entertained group eyeing her. "I guess uh, it's started, right?"
"Uhhh, yeah," one guy in the corner responded, his dark eyes squinting slightly as he scratched his chin and casually reintroduced the joint from behind his back.
"Cool!" she chirped, forcing herself to smile widely.
Calculating the situation quickly, a knowing smirk cracked on his face, which seemed to be a cue for his friends to break into a subdued chuckle.
That she was clearly not a member of the Black Student Union was, of course, immediately apparent; what drew their attention, though, was how awkward she was. She wore the same pair of red high heels she'd worn on her prom night, and although they looked nice, she had never mastered walking in them. In fact, she clearly hadn't worn them since then, as her wobbly climb down the stairs looked precarious rather than sexy.
Furthermore, her attempt at eyeshadow gave her the effect of a stunned raccoon. Her chestnut hair was slightly frizzed from the humidity. Her white spaghetti-strap tank top had a tiny moth-eaten hole conspicuously over her breast, which she'd noticed too late to change. The red miniskirt around her broad hips fought against her curves, looking altogether too narrow for her.
The guys at the bottom of the stairs appeared slightly guilty for the obvious amusement her appearance provided them, covering their faces as they continued to suppress outright laughter.
She immediately felt ridiculous. She smiled at the group and then ducked by them humbly, mouthing an inaudible apology. As she passed, she felt their eyes zero in on her sizable bottom the minute she passed by.
"Yo girl, you looking' for something?" one boy with a nasally voice said boldly as he leaned around the corner.
"Oh, uh," Jenney paused and thought a moment. "Do you know where Merv is? Merv Jordan-Casey?" she asked shyly.
"Uh, yeah. He that tall, dark-skinned dude right?" answered one of the boys with a raised eyebrow.
"Nah, I mean I think I saw him go in. With like 4 people. But ah, I'm high right now so I don't remember much, haha."
Jenney laughed, nodding, but remained quiet. Part of her wanted to dash and go find Merv immediately, but she didn't want to be rude, since the three of these boys were still eyeing her. One boy took a hit, held it in his lungs, then exhaled with a cough, smiling dopily.
"You smoke, girl?"
She froze in the dark doorway leading to the dance hall, turning slightly towards them.
"Um, I'm not sure..." she remarked. Which was true. She'd never smoked anything before. One boy smiled at her, then stretched out his arm to offer her a hit from the bulbous blunt in his hand.
"Go on," he said. "You look kinda like, nervous. Should loosen up a bit," he said, his grin displaying a neat row of pearly whites.
"Oh! I didn't know I looked—okay!" Jenney said, politely extending her hand. "My name's Jenney, by the way..."
10:09 pm. The dance floor in the southern wing of Messer hall throbbed and bumped with subharmonic frequencies, streetwise music pounding her eardrums. The room was sweaty and thick with figures swaying, grinding and loping to a beat nearly strong enough to lift Jenney off the floor.
Lost in the moment, she found herself dancing as well, joyfully, wildly, erratically, interpretively. She whipped her hair in her shadow-smeared eyes and shimmied back and forth across the floor with abandon as alcohol and THC—substances wholly new to her—coursed through her system.
"Damn, that white girl crazy, what she doin' here?" she heard a boy behind her say, laughing confusedly. For the first time in her life, she didn't care about what others thought. She didn't mind sticking out. She knew most of these students had seen her around school, dodging social contact like the plague and burying her bespectacled face in books. None of them would have expected to see her here, doing this.
As she bobbed and thrashed to the infectious pulse, she sensed the discomfort of a few of the girls—their probing, cautious brown eyes letting her know she, the lily outsider, was merely being tolerated. Still, as boys ventured to dance up close to her, stealing glances loaded with sexual promise, she couldn't dwell on such politics.
The more she drank and danced, the more she felt time fizzle away. By the time Merv finally entered the room with his entourage, all her inhibitions had been thoroughly muted. Her face lit up dramatically the minute she spotted him, and she ran right over to him, clutching a plastic cup of cheap whiskey in her hand.
"HI!" she yelled tipsily over the noise, smiling ear to ear. Merv seemed taken aback. Zaid and and the quiet guy were both there with him, as well as a pretty caramel-colored girl with long braids who Zaid had his arm around.
"Oh. Uh, hi!" Merv responded, looking back at his friends. Zaid nodded and grinned, his eyebrows raising to the brim of his baseball cap. Jenney could almost see him utter another "damn" as he assessed the situation, but the girl with him—which Jenney quickly figured was his girlfriend—looked wary, and immediately tugged him away somewhere out of sight. Merv watched him go with a knowing shake of his head.
"YOU'RE MERV, RIGHT?" Jenney shouted over the booming music, leaning in. Merv could smell the alcohol on her breath, and noticed that her tiny voice sounded strained as it tried to compete with the volume of her surroundings. He nodded, looked back at his quiet friend, and then flashed her a surprisingly gentle smile. He motioned with an arch of his slender neck to follow him to a quieter place. She quickly downed the last of her drink and followed eagerly, alcoholic warmth washing over.
Down the hall, the two boys turned, waving hello to a few girls who returned the gesture enthusiastically. The girls stopped, staring at Jenney and rolling their eyes almost imperceptibly as they walked away. Jenney was too under the influence to notice.
"A little easier to hear you now," Merv said casually, staring Jenney up and down ambiguously. She couldn't yet tell if he was attracted to her; he seemed rather reserved, and didn't quite look at her the way he did some of the other girls in the party. "So uh, yeah I'm Merv. What's up?"
"Oh, how rude of me! My name is Jenney. I sit near you in Legal Ethics with Ms. Diaz—"
"Haha, yeah I know. Jenney uh, Chester something—ah yeah. Chesterfold?"
"Oh, good memory! It's field, Chesterfield, not fold, but close! Hehe," she said, taking a step closer to him. She saw the quiet guy look at Merv, sharing for a split second a mutual look of perplexity.
"Ah, okay, gotcha. Jenney Chesterfield. Yeah, so, whatcha doin' here? Just havin' fun?"
"Just a little fun," Jenney said, batting her eyes. "I mean I know this is like, a Black Student Union thing...I hope I don't stand out too much," she said, flashing Merv's friend a look now and noticing that he, too, was notably if not remarkably handsome—certainly not as striking as Merv, though some of that was due to his untamed mutton chops and shabby dress. I can do this, she thought to herself as another wave of downed liquor passed through her, sending a gently euphoric buzz through her body.
"Oh, nah everyone's invited, don't really matter about the color, haha. I mean you know...it's more like, most people in this school don't wanna get involved. They want to go to their own parties. White parties, or whatever. But it's not like we keep people out, that ain't constitutional," Merv said, flashing her another one of his sly smiles.
"Yeah," Jenney said, stepping in bravely and venturing to touch Merv on the forearm. His arm felt strong and sinewy. She looked at his friend and batted her eyes.
"Oh, sorry! And what's your name?"
"Kevin," he responded with an unexpectedly deep baritone voice.
Kevin took a step forward, looking around a moment to see if anyone was looking; thankfully, it was too crowded and noisy for them to stand out, regardless of Jenney's appearance. She responded by placing her other hand on Kevin's arm. It, too felt strong in her cold little fingers.