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Justin Campbell Justin Campbell
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The Party Sequel #2

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She had a friend.

      Lying deep within a window-well bordering the breezeway at the side of the house, covered in several tossed Ottawa Citizens, Duncan slowly stirred to life. He was fortunate to have been stuck down there, as the energy rays called into action by Ryan from the desk, the rays that re-arranged everything into a superficial cleanliness, hadn't reached down there. Had he been lying above grade, he might have found himself re-arranged dramatically.
       To Duncan's immediate left, a face blinked in and out of existence simultaneously in the basement window. The sudden movement helped the blonde thrust himself towards consciousness. As he became aware of his place, he noted he had bandages wrapped around his head, as well as bits of glass littered across his body. Thankfully, he didn't realize they were the bits of Joel Graham's prized visual he'd accidentally smashed earlier. He also had no idea the athletic director was planning his next move against him at that very moment.
       With great effort, he pulled himself upwards into a sitting position. His body ached with pain, and as he brushed his hair, bits of broken drumstick came loose.
       The breezeway was empty; the only sounds came from the streets and the crickets further back in the yard. As Duncan stood in the middle of the place, he noted little light coming from the windows of the house; everyone must be getting ready for bed, and no doubt the door was locked. He would have to find a way to get home.
       Duncan ambled out towards the street, which was quiet and lit orange with sodium vapour light. The driveway was already thankfully dry from the water Doug Elliot had used to wash away the alcohol and foam, so there was no danger of him slipping or sticking to the ground. No children were about, or pedestrians. What was he going to do, catch a bus? Take a cab? Walk? He wasn't walking all the way to South Keys, it was over twenty kilometres away.
       Duncan scratched his head; more drum stick fell out.
       Bright light suddenly washed over him from his left; a black car had just put its high-beams on as it coasted around the concrete barrier. About to pass him, it quickly slowed and came to a stop. The passenger window rolled down.
       A young man of similar age stuck his head out. “Hey, man, you okay?”
       Duncan took him in: Glasses and a beard, a strong nose. Dark hair. Sunglasses - at night? The guy was very obviously taking in his own messed up appearance: Tangled, messed up hair, shredded clothes that sparkled thanks to the last bits of boccolini glass, two black eyes, an obviously tossed-about look.
       Duncan tried to analyze all the chaotic possibilities this situation could possibly warrant depending on how it evolved. But his mind wasn't in it. So he just said, “I don't know.”
       “You look totally dishevelled - you want a ride, man? Looks like you need one.”
       Duncan stared for a second, and then numbly agreed. “Okay.”

       “That game was the most intense game of my life, you know. I mean, how anyone understood what was going on, I don't know. You really did, though. I can't believe you held it together to the end, man. You were all over the place. I think I tripped and fell eighteen times, and it was always over the poor kid curled up on the floor. I hope I didn't break his ribs. And Paige, my god, she was nasty in play…how did you keep facing her like that? Anyways, it’s not every day someone’s stick snaps thanks to Duncan…he obviously wears his hats for a reason, you don’t want something to break under his coarse blades. Come on, man, life is more than something you hit things with. Isn’t it?”
       Approaching maximum revs, Kevin wearily fumbled with the gear stick, grinding the truck’s transmission as he had been since starting the drive home. A day’s use of such a huge vehicle had not given him much practice. The self-adjusting seat was nice, though. Thankfully, hardly much traffic was on the streets at this hour, and the only victim of his last left turn was a stop sign. In the cab behind him, lying in the fetal position, was his best friend Lloyd. Kevin had been keeping up the one-sided monologue for the past seven minutes as he drove, hoping to elicit a response from his normally well-adjusted comrade.
       “We should be twenty minutes to the depot. When we get there, I’ll park the truck, get the car, and we’ll be on our way home. You wanna crash with me tonight?”
       Lloyd didn’t respond.
       “Yeah, you should probably crash at my place,” he answered himself.

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