He grabbed a wine glass off the counter and rinsed it out in the sink, at the same time drunkenly attempting to avoid the slimy tower of bowls and plates resting precariously nearby, but not careful enough, as they shifted, in their partially solidified state, hesitated for a moment, then crashed down.
Ignoring the plate and bowl situation, he turned off the water, most of the way, and grabbed the only dish rag; dirty and stained as it was, to dry the wine glass, then tossed it somewhere into the kitchen abyss. It landed softly. He swung the fridge door open hard enough for the whole thing to shift when the door reached the climax of its arc and hit the stoppers on the door’s hinges. Grabbed the wine; unopened, a screw cap, and gripped the top, twisted, and took a bit of pleasure in the sound of the seal breaking. Poured a glass. A big glass. Replaced the wine in the fridge, reconsidered, took the bottle, and closed the door with his foot.
The chorus of the song on the small portable blue-tooth speakers was coming on strong, and he glided through the kitchen towards the living room, and smoothly grabbed his cigarettes off of the counter, ignoring the stack of unread magazines, chest high, that began a landslide towards the floor as his elbow grazed them. Light as a feather; the rhythm of the song in his steps, he threw on a light jacket, and stepped outside to smoke, blissfully unaware of the chaos and sadness behind him.
When he awoke to the birds chirping, the sun just below the horizon, in a folding chair on the porch, the backdoor was halfway open. Nearsighted, his first reaction was to look for his glasses, which he found under the folding chair. He hadn’t noticed the door yet, the first thing he noticed was a bit of wine left in the bottle, and; it still being semi-dark outside, so nighttime, he took a pull from the bottle. Ted lurched up from the lawnchair. Steadied himself on the railing as he almost fell forwards from the momentum, and took a drunken moment to take in the relative silence of the normally bustling street. Just him and the birds.
But in that beautiful pre-morning bliss, when it is still a bit dark, a sliver of the light from the living room shown from the still open patio door onto the wooden patio floor. Noticing this, he forgot all about the birds and the sunrise, and what a sunrise it would have been to finish the warm wine in the folding chair alone and still morning-after drunk!
He was alarmed. Why was the door open?! So he approached with caution. Sort of attempted to peak around the corner of the doorframe, but the goddamn door creaked like it always does. And then he saw it.
It was chaos. The apartment was trashed. The sink running. Broken dishes everywhere. Magazines and papers strewn about the house as if they had been looking for something important. He looked around for something, anything to defend himself with. He settled on a golf club- a putter. He walked slowly towards the bedroom to check on his girlfriend, keeping an eye out for the intruder along the way and also to see what they had stolen. When he got there, the bed was empty, sheets tangled on the floor. And he forgot about any potential danger and ran back into the kitchen to get his phone off of the charger to call the police.
Sprinting into the kitchen he slipped on a magazine and crashed to the floor, further aggravating the glasses and plates and bowls, which crunched and cracked underneath him on the floor.
Raising up from the floor gingerly, he grabbed his phone and it had a sticky note attached to it, dated 4 days ago:
I am leaving you. You’ve been on this bender for a while, and it was fun when we started but I cant keep up with you. And you need to call into work, if that is still even there.
I took your sunglasses because they always looked better on me.
He took a second to re-read, kind of focused on the date as much as his blurred vison would allow. The date seemed arbitrary, what is today? With shaky hands, he carefully creased the note and stuffed it in the pocket of his greasy jeans. The mess in the apartment suddenly made sense to him- she must have done it, then stormed out. He remembered the semi-full bottle on the balcony and grinned while he brushed he broken glass off- he’d call her later.