Congress Avenue, Friday, November 12, 5:10 p.m.
Jude slept off the last dregs of the damage he had done to himself the previous night, blissfully unaware of the bright, bright day just outside wherever the hell he was. Blissfully unaware, for that matter, of pretty much everything: his broken relationships (plural), his dwindling bank account (singular), the impending deadlines, the late bills.
Then his bliss came to an end. He woke up.
Jude’s eyes blinked open, creaky and rheumy. He blinked rapidly, the world slowly coming into focus. The ceiling first. Glossy, popcorn texture. Heavy. Badly applied. He turned his head. Cheap plastic paneling. Stamped on wood texture repeating every four feet.
Fuck. I must be in the suburbs.
He sat up, blinked some more. He was sitting on a couch, a painfully vivid floral pattern that sent shards through the surviving brain cells. He swung his legs off the couch and cracked his shin against a thick-legged, inelegant coffee table, He cursed again, then noticed a half-empty Shiner Bock teetering on the edge of the coffee table. He picked up the beer, smelled it, drained it, and set about figuring out exactly where he was.
He rummaged around in his pocket, dug out his cell phone. 10:38 a.m. Saturday. There were message. Five voice mails, nine emails, a couple of dozen texts. Fuck. Saturday really shouldn’t suck so hard before lunch.