I’d first met #33 a couple of years previously. She was kind of androgynous; I thought she was a boy the first time I saw her. I didn’t know her very well, but between my trip to Canada and the start of my second year at uni, I wound up at Wolsey’s in Bangor with her and some mutual friends. We danced together upstairs. She was hot and I was wondering what her story was. She’d been quiet in the past and we’d barely talked, and now she seemed all confident and fun and cool.
Outside after closing time, some boy was coming on to me and I wasn’t interested. I took #33 aside and said, let’s pretend you’re my girlfriend if he keeps it up, okay? She said okay, have you ever had a girlfriend? I said no; she said she had. And then she kissed me.
As previously mentioned, kissing a girl is not usually the smartest way to get rid of a straight boy. I believe he actually spluttered and called his friends over; apparently he had never before seen such an amazing sight. Whatever. I was making out with #33 and I was thrilled. I wound up going back to some boy’s house because she was. We stayed up really late. She dipped her finger in speed and dabbed it on my gums and I let her because I hoped this intimacy meant there was something more on the cards. But instead, I think she got off with the boy whose house we were in.
A day or two later I met her for breakfast at Queen’s University. I was excited, I thought maybe it was a date. It was good talking to her but I couldn’t figure out if anything more was going to happen. I imagined what it would be like to get off with her in her student accommodation. I wanted to know how someone from the same place as me had managed to have a girlfriend, because I hadn’t known anyone queer when I was growing up other than Angus; I’d kept quiet and waited till I left town.
A couple of nights after that, I was at the Hal Al Shedad gig at Giro’s in Belfast. I found #33 after the band had finished playing. “Can I kiss you again?” I asked. She said yes, and I did, but when the lights came on she pretty much fled.
Not long after that, I returned to Scotland. We swapped a couple of postcards, which was cool, but nothing came of it. I never said hey, I want more. I saw her again several years later when both our lives were in a completely different place.