She knocked on the door to Caroline’s apartment with her wine in-hand. She could hear Caroline’s dog barking and scratching on the other side of the door followed by Caroline cracking the door to say, “Ugh, one second, I need to put her in her cage.”
Her neck was tense waiting outside the door for what felt like an hour but was a measly 90 seconds.
“Sorrrrrry,” Caroline apologized as she opened the door all the way. “She still doesn’t take kindly to visitors yet.”
Unwrapping her scarf from around her neck and taking off her jacket, she assured Caroline that Sperry had “quite the learning curve” as well. “I’m just glad to be out of the apartment, tbh,” she continued. “So glad John is on a work trip and we can have a Winesday like old times.”
As Caroline began unwrapping the foil from atop the bottle of wine sitting on her island, she remarked, “Girl, you know mama’s always up for some wine.”
Earlier in the week, she reached out to Caroline to see what her schedule was like – something that happens every week but never actually leads to any plans outside of a happy hour here and there or a Friday double date. With John out of town and Todd attending a work dinner with clients, Wednesday appeared to be the perfect night to bring back the tradition they had let fall by the wayside less than a year after being out of college.
“Sooooo, like, dish,” Caroline said as they settled in on the couch and turned on re-runs of Modern Family. “I know something’s bothering you, and if you tell me that everything’s fine, I’m just going to keep prying so you might as well just tell me.”
Uneasy, she began fussing with her turtleneck sweater. She sat up and put one of her legs beneath her butt before leaning over to the coffee table and picking up her Olivia Pope-esque wine glass.
“Oh, I like this,” she commented after her first sip.
“Not to brag but it’s, like, a super nice bottle that John’s parents gave us at our stock-the-bar party,” she explained. “John’s dad’s bestie is a Master Somm at some Michelin-rated restaurant or something. I’m almost pozzie he was supposed to be on Chef’s Table on Netflix but turned it down.”
With her jaw dropped, she responded, “Whaaaaat? Are you, like, cereal? That show is so crazy. I can’t watch it without pausing to make a reservation somewhere.”
“I know,” Caroline reiterated. “But, like, you’re avoiding telling me what’s getting at you.”
“Ughhhhhh, fine,” she groaned. “It’s just, like, super embarrassing and you’re going to think I’m a total psycho.”
Caroline rolled her eyes before assuring her, “You’re talking to the girl who once drunkenly gave a guy second-degree burns in college because she smashed a bagel sandwich in his face after he called me the wrong name when we were making out – I thiiiiink whatever you did isn’t as bad as that.”
“Hahahahaa, Brad! He was SUCH a fuckboy.”
They erupted with laughter before Caroline took the remote and turned down the television so they could really get into the conversation.
“Ugh, fiiiiiine,” she belabored. “So, like, I was stalking this girl on Insta and––”
“Yeah,” Caroline interrupted. “I know. John told me. Well, he didn’t ‘tell me’ tell me, but I was using his iPad and his text conversation with Todd was up on the screen and I read the whole thing.”
They again erupted with laughter which caused Caroline’s dog to begin barking in hopes of getting out of her cage. Caroline slapped her thigh and yelled, “Penny! No!” before she continued.
“Okay, so like, Todd bought me flowers and explained the whole sitch to me but I still just, IDK, feel uneasy about the whole thing.”
Caroline nodded along thinking to herself, “Oh my God, she looks so fucking Olivia Pope right now in that sweater and with that wine that I just want to puke” until she snapped out of her daze and brought up the text messages she had previously read just days before.
“So, like, I’ll say this,” Caroline began, “Todd def didn’t cheat on you. And even if he did, he’s not telling John. But I totes don’t think he did.”
“But liiiiiiiiike,” she hesitated, “How do we know? Todd didn’t talk to me for like 24 hours on that trip and claimed it was because he ‘lost his phone’ or whatevs.”
“I mean, IDK, maybe Todd lost his phone?”
“You know what I mean, Caroline. I just don’t get why he wouldn’t have told us about these girls sooner.”
Caroline let out a laugh before explaining, “At least he’s told you about these girls. John thinks he’s being sly by not telling me as if I have no idea.”
“Hahahahaha,” she laughed in response. “Stupid boys.”
“But seriously,” Caroline clarified. “I don’t think anything actually happened and Todd was supes worried about it so I legit think everything’s fine. And, like, you know we fucking met that girl on Halloween, right?”
“Yeah, Todd told me but all I remember is waking up with white paint all over my face and Todd sleeping on the couch upright with a whiskey in his hand.”
Caroline again belted out laughter before asking, “Are we hot messes?”
“Struggle shuttle, population: us,” she said in response before they cheersed. “But like, am I crazy? What should I do?”
“Honestly,” Caroline reluctantly responded, “Yeah, you’re being a little cray. You should probably do something nice for him,” she affirmed while using air quotes as she said the word “nice.”
Horrified, she almost spit out her wine at Caroline’s suggestion before she laughter spilled from her wine-stained mouth.
“When’s the last time you… you know…?” Caroline asked with a closed fist bobbing towards her mouth. She couldn’t get the words out without cackling at how “innappropes” she was being.
Combing her brain for the last time she had “you know’d” Todd, she paused before admitting that it hadn’t been since his birthday.
“His birthday!” Caroline exclaimed. “Welp, better pour another glass because you’ve got some work to do tonight, sister.”
She stood up from the couch and brought her glass to the island where another bottle of wine sat – the wine that she had brought. She explained to Caroline that it was a cheap bottle she had picked up from a bodega on the way over. She uncorked it and gave herself a heavy pour. Her phone, which was on “Do Not Disturb” due to the traditional Winesday rules, was turned over. Picking it up, she opened her texts to and typed in Todd’s name. Typing away, her message simply read, “Soooooo when are you getting home tonight?” .
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