8:37 PM

God, calm down, Elliott! I love the kid, but I also hate him, does that make sense? You can be friends with someone your whole life but just kind of loathe their current incarnation, I guess. I don’t know. I just try to look out for him. His heart is good, but all the blood is currently taking up space elsewhere.

There’s Tilly. Of course she looks beautiful. Fuck. I wonder what she’s talking about with Hair Chewing Pete? Ugh.

Man, I hate parties.
8:40 PM

Taylor’s party! Oh, crap! I should still go, right? What if everyone is paired up already, though? What if I walk in and everyone is just making out all over the place and I have to sit there and eat chips with the rejects? Maybe Taylor just invited me to be nice, anyway. I generally hate these kinds of parties. I went to a few in middle school, before I was out, and the boys couldn’t understand why I didn’t want their tongues in my mouth. Eventually I told them I had mono. Super-contagious mono. That did the trick. But that was a long time ago. And Taylor is so…

Oh, screw it. I’ll go. What’s the worst that can happen? At least there’ll be chips.
8:45 PM

She’s still not here. I’ve been sitting here talking to Mikey about our sixth-grade field trip for like 10 full minutes. Remember that gift shop? Remember when Mrs. Wicker told us to stop throwing gummy bears at other cars on the highway? Ugh. He seems about as into it as I am, but we’re both soldiering on. I know he wants to ask me about Tilly, but he won’t, because he’s stubborn. So we just keep talking about nothing, memories that we barely remember.

This might be the worst night of my life.
8:57 PM

What can you ask your ex-girlfriend’s best friend without sounding like a creeper? How’s she doing? Is she happy? Too presumptuous, I think. Because I don’t really have the right to know the answers. I don’t have the right to know how she is or if she’s happy or if she ever talks about me or if she still has that shell I gave her from North Carolina or if she hates me or anything else. I’m the one who broke her heart. You don’t get to ask questions after that.
9:05 PM

I can’t believe this is happening. I can’t believe this is happening. Bridget Collier! The most beautiful girl I’ve ever seen! And she likes me! Me, of all people! She even likes my chip breath! She’s putting her hands on me and it’s the greatest most terrifying thing that’s ever happened to me. God bless this terrible futon, amen.
9:15 PM

Oh, darlings, I know he’s looking at me. Let him look, babes! He’s the one who walked away! Do I miss him? Do I still love him? Does it matter? (Yes, yes, not really.)
9:20 PM

9:22 PM

Exactly as I feared: Everyone’s partnered up, faces plastered together. The candles are a nice touch. Taylor looks so pretty. Not sure why she and Mike Powell aren’t hooking up with anyone. They’re just sitting there talking. Maybe she’s not interested in anyone? Maybe she’s seeing someone?
9:23 PM

She’s coming over here. Oh my god. If she sits next to me I might just melt into this chair. If I screw this up, this will be the worst night of my life.
9:27 PM

As fascinating as it’s been talking with Pete for the past hour and a half, I’m going to have to draw the line at him putting a piece of my hair in his mouth. Not my scene, Peter, darling! Gross! He doesn’t seem too heartbroken about my departure, though: He’s currently making out with Roberta, who hasn’t cut her hair since kindergarten. It’s a dream match, really.

Oh, my word: Daisy is here. Taylor is freaking out, I can tell. It’s a best-friend-radar kind of thing. There’s this one tendril of hair on the left side of her head that actually curls when she’s nervous, probably because she keeps playing with it. It’s totally in spiral mode right now. Ooh, they’re talking! Not sure what about, but they’re both laughing and smiling a lot. Mikey is just sitting there, staring at his shoes. He’s only here to support Elliott, I’m sure.
9:45 PM

Bridget says she has to go—something about strict parents and a 10 o’clock curfew. I want to tell her I love her—I’m pretty sure I do—but instead I just tell her I’ll text her (which I’m, like, already doing) and that I’ll see her around. I will also see her in my dreams, but I don’t tell her that, because I want her to actually like me. BEST PARTY EVER!
9:46 PM

Elliott has spent the past hour with his face plastered to Bridget Collier’s, but she’s leaving for some reason. I think her parents are really strict. Now he’s giving her sloppy goodbye kisses on the stairs. It is disgusting, but I’m happy for them. I am also happy for me, because now that their makeout session is over, I can finally get the fuck out of here.
9:49 PM

He told me I was “too intense” for him. Darling! Buy the ticket, take the ride, you know?
9:51 PM

Have you ever loved someone so much it scares the shit out of you?

Like, have you ever met Tilly Baker?
9:53 PM

He’s leaving, I think. No, wait, he’s stopping. What is he doing? Oh, god, he’s coming over here. I hate him. I love him. I’m suddenly jealous of Taylor’s lip gloss game. Why is this song so good? Why is his hair so greasy, but in the best way? Why does anything happen, ever?
9:55 PM

Fuck, I love parties.
10:10 PM

I love everything!!!
10:14 PM

I love Taylor for insisting on fake candles. I’ve already knocked down five, and Mikey has knocked over three. Not that it’s any of your business, darlings!
1 AM

Am I glad I went? Yes. Yes, yes, yes. Times infinity plus a million. Taylor is so beautiful, and her lip gloss tastes like…some kind of soda? It was perfect. We’re going to hang out tomorrow. I can’t wait.
1:15 AM

I am lying on a pile of blankets on my basement floor, staring at the ceiling and watching the tiny flickers of flameless candles dance around the walls. Tilly is asleep on a bed of pillows—the one she made up/out with Mikey Powell on—and the smell of perfume and chips is still in the air. But nothing really matters except for Daisy. Daisy, Daisy, Daisy. The most beautiful girl in the world.

This may have been the greatest night of my life. ♦