Within these four walls of my bedroom, I sit quite comfortably. The only movement I make is to turn the page, and the only noise is the whispering sound it makes. For a student on a Friday night, this might seem strange. Shouldn’t I be getting ready to go out, blasting my music from my stereo to the high heavens? Or, maybe, binge watching TV shows on Netflix with my best friend that lives only down the hall, gorging on pizza?
There is a sharp knocking on a door. Not my door, but the one down from mine. It shatters my silence and concentration, bringing me back down to the real world. A question, muffled slightly by the walls but still fairly clear, follows.
“Are you coming out with us tonight?”
I strain to listen for the answer, not sure whether to hope for a yes or no.
“Yeah, I’ll be ready soon.”
“Cool, meet in my room at ten for pre-drinks with the others.”
I wait in anticipation, heart beating faster as the seconds tick by. They are long and drawn out. It feels like an eternity. My fingers grip the delicate pages so hard I’m half afraid they’ll tear. Will they knock on my door?
Soon, the light sound of socked feet on the carpet scuff away. Silence resumes and I sigh, fingers shaking as they relax.
But something inside me has begun to ache, feels empty and cold. Hollow.
I put my book down, get up and switch the light off, dowsing my room in darkness. I crawl back into bed and draw the duvet up and around me. For some reason, my eyes feet hot and wet.
The heavy bass of music pounding up from the room below mine makes my bedroom walls vibrate. I try not to listen to the laughter and drunken chatter floats up through the floorboards.