Updated: Jul 6, 2020
Let me tell you what the boys DIDN’T tell you about that night.
Rian spent two hours in the bathroom. I tried to go in there to talk him out of it. He was balling his eyes out. He kept going on and on and on about his father and how he was a “righteous screwup” because of him. His father gave him the scar. He won’t tell you, but I’m telling you. I eventually got in there with him, but I couldn’t do much. I couldn’t talk him out of it. Hell, he looked awful. His eyes were so red, it was like someone’d just decked him. I felt so bad. When I left, I told Corvun, because Corvun always knows what to do when Rian gets into his phases like that.
I sat with Jayren for a while, who was killing time on his phone. We talked about Rian for a while, and Jayren eventually put his phone down and engaged in the conversation. (INCREDIBLE!!) We all feel back for Rian. That’s why we wanted to do the party for him. He loves the city, but it’s hard to get out there and avoid all the cops. Jayren told me we should dress up, and I agreed. Just for the hell of it. We turned some jazz on and got ready together. I love Jayren’s company, because he’s honest. He’ll tell me if my hair looks like shit in the good way or the bad way. Think “Are you trying to attract flies?” versus “That’s the shit.” He told me not to snitch about it, but he let me in on the fact that Rian likes it when I look like I could kick him in the teeth and still turn heads while doing it. I fucking lost it, but I dressed like a hoe anyway.
When Corvun led Rian out of the bathroom with a bag on his head, I think Jayren and I both lost our shit.
Corvun told us Carina had our ride, and we all headed out.
We took the bag off Rian’s head. His eyes were still puffy.
I told him I loved him.
Jayren told him he loved him too.
Rianjust kind of rolled his eyes.
He looked back at me though, and I grinned at him.
He got a little flustered at that. He’s so sweet.
When we got to the bar, I stayed with Rian. I played a little dirty, and in hindsight—I don’t really feel bad about it. I sat on his lap, kissed his ear while he played piano. He couldn’t get enough of it. When I told him happy birthday, it stopped him.
He asked if that was today. (He breaks my heart.)
I told him we were all blessed the day he was born.
He kind of just laughed it off.
So I kissed him.
We got some drinks, and after he was two shots in and cooling down I went to find Corvun. We talked for a little, and I asked him why he had to put the bag on Rian’s head. Corvun laughed about it. He told me at first, he threatened Rian with it like— “I’m going to put a bag on your head, because you’re ugly sobbing, you know that?” —and when Rian cried harder, he actually did it. Tough love. But that’s what it is: love. In its own weird, crooked way. Corvun organized this whole thing. He told me Jayren and I were giving a speech, and I asked him why the hell he hadn’t told me sooner.
I tried to come up with something ridiculous and cheesy, and it worked. I told him there’s two ways to look at life—the good way and the bad way. There’s two ways to look at everything, actually, including death, and the color green. I went on about that for a while—how green to me is sort of a gross color but after meeting him, seeing his eyes, all of the plants he grows, essentially him putting the life in the color, I looked at it a different way. The good way. Jayren did better, though. He always does better winging shit like that. I thought I rambled too much.
On the ride home (Ophiah came with us, after showing up mid-party), Rian thanked us.
Corvun was smug about it, but I told Rian it was only returning the favor for his friendship.
Seriously, we would not be the same without him. I think he keeps the humanity in us, whether that’s with his plants or his singing around the dorm or arguing me about how mint ice cream is better than vanilla (it’s not, mint ice cream tastes like toothpaste), I don’t know. Whatever he does, it works. He’s the one who keeps us sane.