Written by anon
I was a late bloomer. By the time I got to my third year of undergrad, I was living abroad for the first time, studying in France. I still had not had sex. I had gone out with a group of girls I didn’t know very well, and one night we had met a group of guys on their “gentlemen’s night,” a night consisting of homemade burgers, men, and whiskey.
Being 20, none of us had learned to avoid people who use the term “gentlemen” unironically. So when they invited us over to a pregame for an Erasmus party the following week, we said yes. After the pregame, my friends went to the party
with some of the group and I chose to stay at the residence with the rest, including a former German exchange student who was just there visiting his friends.
Clueless and unexperienced, I hadn’t noticed he was interested in me until he kissed me in the staircase. About five minutes later, he moved and I realized he was going down on me.
I panicked, expecting someone to walk down the stairs and discover our public indecency (and my inexperience). I also remembered that I had left a clean pad down there and really started stressing…
“Can I…” I called down to him in elementary French, “can we go to your room?”
He rushed me down the stairs and into a room as I tried to remember how to breathe.
“Wait,” I asked when he kissed me on the bed, remembering that he no longer attended this school and was visiting his Erasmus friends from Germany. “This is not your room… this is your friend’s bed?”
And that’s how I learned the expression for, “I don’t care” in French.
“Wait,” for the last time. I ran into the bathroom. The pad was clean, an emergency pad— I just needed to throw it out. I probably wouldn’t care, but at the time everything was spinning and I could think of two things 1) it was happening and 2) he couldn’t know. I pulled it out, rolled it up and covered it in toilet paper and scanned the bathroom.
“Um… is there a trashcan anywhere?” I called out.
The pad suddenly felt heavy in my hand.
“I need… a trash can.” I could hear him sigh from the room.
“Just throw it out the window.” So I walked across the room, and I threw a pad out the sixth story window.
About half an hour later, I still had not had sex with him and I got a text from my friends telling me they were coming back to the residence to pick me up. I took the opportunity to leave.
In my head, I like to imagine that below on the plaza, right before I dropped the pad, a girl stood there in front of her ex. She’d promised herself she wouldn’t go back and yet was in the process of convincing herself that maybe going up to his room wouldn’t be so bad. And at the moment she opened her mouth to say yes, a pad poorly wrapped in toilet paper came flying from the sky, hitting her ex directly in the face and sticking in his hair. She took it as a sign to be strong and finally walk away; for good this time.
In reality, the more likely story is that the next morning several hungover students on their way to breakfast saw the rolled up pad covered in crumpled tissue lying on the floor and thought to themselves, “well at least my evening didn’t involve whatever that was.” And an hour later, somebody cleaning the street on another Saturday morning outside a student residence probably wished that all twenty year olds would grow the hell up.
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