About Last Night
The morning light filtered through the curtains, hitting Charlie’s eyes with an unwelcome intensity. Groaning, he shifted under the sheets, the pounding in his head reminding him of the previous night’s indulgence.
Rolling onto his back, Charlie rubbed his temples to alleviate the headache. Memories of endless laughter, bright lights, and glittering performers flashed in his mind, followed by an abrupt blackout.
Charlie squinted, trying to piece together the events leading up to this pounding headache. The drag show – that much he could remember. The performers’ energy, the crowd’s cheers, and the carefree atmosphere. But after his fourth glass of dirty martini, the memories seemed to blur and dissolve, slipping through his mental fingers like sand.
A sigh escaped him as he reached for his phone on the nightstand. Looking at the screen, he winced at the harsh light but was determined to unlock the mystery from last night. Scrolling through his messages and photos, Charlie hoped for some digital snippets to lead him through the fog of his memory.
There were a few snapshots of the drag show – extravagant costumes, dynamic dance moves, and a glimpse of Ming and Xing with beaming smiles. But after that, the screen was a void, reflecting the gaps in his memory.
His stomach churned uneasily as he swung his legs over the side of the bed, the cold floor sending a shiver up his spine. As he stumbled to the bathroom, flashes of hazy scenes floated through his mind: Ming laughing, Xing ordering more drinks, himself taking another sip of his dirty martini, and then… darkness. The pieces were there, but they refused to fit together neatly.
Turning on the faucet, Charlie splashed his face with cold water, hoping it would help clear the fog in his mind. He leaned on the sink, staring at his own reflection as if searching for answers in the depths of his tired eyes.
Drying his face with a towel, Charlie returned to the bed and collapsed onto it, closing his eyes and attempting to recall more details.
Charlie’s head throbbed mercilessly as his phone erupted into a shrill ringtone, jolting him from his hungover stupor. He sighed and glanced wearily at the screen, revealing Xing’s incoming call.
Though the idea of talking felt torturous, a nagging feeling whispered to Charlie that Xing might hold some crucial answers about the hazy events of the previous night.
“Hi, Xing. What’s up?” Charlie answered the phone with a deep growl.
“You tell me, Charlie, how are you feeling this morning?” Xing’s voice dripped with amusement, his laughter almost palpable through the phone.
“I feel like I’ve been hit by a truck and can’t remember a thing that happened last night at the drag bar,” Charlie managed to say, his words slow and his voice heavy.
“Oh, Charlie, you really don’t remember anything?” Xing teased.
“Well, after my fourth dirty martini, I think, I don’t remember anything,” Charlie said slowly, attempting to put together what happened the previous night.
“Oh, you don’t remember that Peng bought us a round of shots last night?” Xing’s tone carried a hint of playful teasing.
Suddenly, Charlie’s eyes widened, and he exclaimed, “Wait, Peng was there last night?”
“He was there, Charlie. In fact, he was practically vying for your attention all night, especially right in front of Ming. It was quite comical,” Xing shared a chuckle in his voice on the other end of the line.
“Oh god, Xing, I’m drawing a complete blank about last night. Can you fill me in on the details?” Charlie’s voice was curious as he attempted to piece together the events between when he had those four drinks and when he somehow ended up back home.