Not prettier, smarter, or richer. Not wiser. Cruel, un-nerving. Without the messy burden of guilt.
We got along great at first. She said, use any of my things, so I said use mine. She said eat any of my food, so I said eat mine. Difference is, she went for it. She wore my clothes, because she hated doing laundry. She ate the cookies grandma sent.
On the seven thousandth fire alarm (false of course) I still called her friend. Used that word first, rather than roommate. I hopped out of the top bunk just as she left the lower. Came down hard and broke her collarbone.
The boyfriend really got to me. Because I had a crush on him first. But she asked him out. And brought him back to our room. And expected me to disappear.
She told me if I needed the room, she’d happily clear out. Part of the reason I can’t hate her is because she meant it. It wasn’t said with the assumption I’d never collect. She imagined me capable of a one-night stand.
I heard the bone snap. My immediate reaction was elation. She writhed on the floor, in the nightgown she thought was sexy but not slutty, perfect for being seen in during firedrills
After they carted her off, I opened her vodka. She always said, help yourself. I imagined what I’d do if her boyfriend came by, with this liquid courage. Won’t happen, but still, I dream of being cruel.