Dave A. lived up by Aurora Village and met a cute girl in the record store there named Cindy. He invited her to the Neptune and the after party one night. Pam Sprowl had earned her degree at the UW and was resigning as the manager and this was our farewell party for her.
I picked Dave up in my Dad's old green truck, then drove over and picked Cindy up and headed down to the Neptune on I-5. Cindy was gorgeous, pretty with an attractive body and a good if slightly acidic sense of humor. We went to work while Cindy watched the movies and visited with Dave at the concessions counter. One of our clean cut recently hired coworkers was excited about attending his first actual party and we all tried to act sophisticated on the subject.
After the RHPS ended we drove over to the house that 3 or 4 female UW students shared near 45th in Wallingford and the serious drinking began. Most of the Neptune crew was there and Frank B. was there, hitting on Dave's date mercilessly. We laughed and talked and pounded a few drinks. I visited with them a bit then wandered off to visit elsewhere. It had been a long day and I was drinking heavily so I got sloshed pretty quickly. I could still talk and move, but I was prone to poor balance and the occasional stagger as the alcohol kicked in.
After a while Pete walked over and said "Dave, you better go deal with Dave. He's outside." Huh. I walked to the front door and out, and there was Dave with a large tree limb in his hands. He was bouncing the end of it off the cement of the sidewalk and he looked very upset.
"Time to pack it in already?" I asked, acting like the tree limb was no big deal.
"Just keep Frank away from me!" Dave snarled.
OK. I turned around and staggered back to the stairs and up to the door and back into the party. Said goodbye to Pam as I staggered past, but I don't think she heard me over the music. I found Cindy back in the dining room hanging out and visiting with the coworkers.
"Hey Cindy, it's about time to go" I said.
She frowned and said "it's so early, is something wrong?"
Uhh, how do I put this, "Yeah Dave's upset and I figured we should get rolling."
Now she looked really upset, and she was so gorgeous and it made me feel so sad that I wanted to hold her and make it OK. I'd normally be way too repressed to act on an impulse like that, but I had been drinking fairly heavily. Cindy felt wonderful as I hugged her tight and her hair smelled good.
"It's OK, don't be upset, Dave'll be all right." Eventually, after a few days.
The door to the bathroom opened and someone wandered out.
"Hang on a minute, gotta take care of this" I said as I staggered over to the bathroom and relieved myself. As I opened the door and came out Cindy was hovering so I stepped up and took her in my arms again. I rotated to the side of the bathroom door to get out of the way a little and leaned back. Against a door, which opened as I put my weight on it.
I remember things slowing down as I fell back through the door. I moved my left arm over to the door as it slid past me, trying to grab something to hold onto. No dice as I fell to a full horizontal extension and looked up past my feet at Cindy, staring down at me as I fall away from her. I remember being surprised that it seemed like I kept falling, like there wasn't even a floor there. That's the last I remember for a bit.
The next things I recall, I'm back up in the living room, swaying a bit and feeling odd, with Pam freaking out and Pete calming her.
"Oh my God, we need to take him to the hospital! He's going to die!" Pam shrieked.
"Ah, relax, it's nothing much" Pete said in an attempt to calm Pam.
I hoped Pete was right and wondered who might need to go to the hospital. The back of my head felt very odd, and there was a strange warmth below it around my neck and the top of my shirt. I reached back and touched the gaping wound, about as large as my hand, wide open and very wet. My hand came back bright red with blood and I realized who might need to go the hospital.
"Guys, I'm going to have to side with Pam on this one. I need to go the hospital" I said calmly.
The clean cut coworker at his first party didn't drink or smoke (that's why he wasn't invited to parties much, I suppose) so he was nominated to drive me to the hospital.
"Look away, this may hurt a bit" Patty, one of the coworkers who lived there, told me. She was holding a towel.
I turned away and took a breath as she firmly pushed the towel against the wound. The feeling is hard to describe: the flaps being pushed back, the throb and spiraling dizziness, through the overwhelming sensations the relief of being cared for as she puts her other hand on my forehead for better purchase and clamps the towel fairly firmly against the wound. I take a gasping breath and the dizziness ebbs a little.
The wetness on my back had now soaked down several inches into the shirt down into my shoulder blades. Patty walks me carefully to the door - "slowly now" - she guides me down the steps and out to the car.
"Oh my God he's going to die in my mom's car and there will be bloodstains all over and my mom is going to kill me" the clean cut co-worker babbles as he starts the car and looks over as Patty puts me into the front passenger seat. She transitions to the back seat and keeps the pressure on my wound with her other hand on my forehead, clamping my head in place as we pull away from the curb and head to the hospital. I close my eyes and things kind of fade out a bit as my universe gets very small. I'm still experiencing the pain as a weird sort of intense feeling that doesn't hurt normally and I'm feeling quite shocky, sweaty and dizzy as the car moves.
Eventually they get my attention and we've stopped moving and we're at the hospital. It's hazy as we cross the emergency room and speak to the lady at the counter about insurance. "778-3964" I say. She picks up the phone and calls the number. After ringing for a while (it's 3 or 3:30 AM by now and mom worked this evening) my mom answers the phone. I zone out as the voices talk to each other - "your son is here with a head wound, can I get some information" and after a bit someone gets me up and takes me into a room.
They have me lie down and they poke needles into the open wound, injecting anesthetics. It makes me squirm some, and sweat more. They start stitching the inner portion of the wound, and I can still feel it a little as the needles loop through and the flesh is pulled together. I can feel the tightening of my scalp all the way to my face and it's very odd. Finishing the inner part they stitch together the outer part and my scalp and face tighten a little more. Tingling odd sensation. They finish and when I try to get up I find my arms are completely numb, so asleep that they won't function to lift me. They help me sit up.
I feel wide awake now, unlike when I came into the hospital. I wonder what they gave me in those last shots? They finish explaining how I care for the wound and what to watch for and tell me I can't wash my hair for 48 hours. I'm a big sweaty dude so I'm going to be pretty ripe by then.
I get up and head back to the waiting room. Patty and the clean cut co-worker look relieved to see me and we head back out to the car. Looks like we avoided any major blood stains in the car and things are much calmer as we drive back to the house.
We walk up into the house and the 5 or 6 remaining folk are all glad to see us. No sign of Dave, Cindy or Frank. Huh, maybe Frank drove them home? If so that would've been one frosty car ride, I guess.
Everyone insists that I need to lie down, I shouldn't go anywhere. I tell them I'd prefer to drive home while the drugs they shot me up with are still in effect since they are keeping me awake anyway but they insist so I go and lie down in the bedroom by the front door.
No chance I'll sleep so I lie on the bed, wondering what happened to everyone and staring at the ceiling.
I found out later what happened. Cindy was able to grab onto the door frame and catch herself so she watched me fall down the stairs behind the door to the far side of the landing 4' below the floor. I caught the back of my head on a ledge there, knocking myself out, and ended up lying in a spreading pool of blood around my head. Cindy ran from the house screaming "Oh my God I've killed him!"
Pete thought the thump/smash was Dave outside with his tree limb coming after Frank, so he was surprised to find me lying in a pool of blood on the stairs. He was able to wake me up and get me back up the stairs, which is where my memory kicks in and they took me to the hospital.
After I left Dave and Frank figured out some of what happened and went out to look for Cindy, Dave's earlier anger put aside. After that the party wound down a bit. That's pretty much what happened while I was at the hospital.
So I lay there wondering and I heard the front door opening and some voices. After a bit the bedroom door came open and Cindy came in looking very relieved to see me. She sat down on the bed beside me and smiled at me and she was so attractive! I realized my injured status gave me a free pass and I used it - sitting up and kissing her, still a little drunk, buzzing on something that keeps me awake, and intoxicated with the feel of Cindy, her smell, her lips on mine.
By the time Dave and Frank got back and Dave walked in Cindy and I had progressed to lying beside each other and fondling. Oops. I hate when that happens.
Dave's rage of earlier in the evening was nothing compared to this. Yet I had the messed up head and therefore had a free pass. He controlled himself, left the bedroom, and then screamed at everyone else. Cindy started to get up, but I held out my hand and stopped her. I told her about the free pass, and that Dave would just have to leave, which he did after a bit more yelling. Frank took Dave home, the door slammed closed, and it got much quieter in the living room. There were still a few voices, but they were much quieter.
Once the coast was clear Cindy and I got up, walked out of the bedroom, waved goodnight to our coworkers, and headed out to the truck for the drive home. I managed to get Cindy's phone number before I dropped her off. Oh well, maybe I'd get lucky on the second date...