Hell. A place beyond this world where the damned face eternal torment. I never believed that such a place existed… until now.
Hey, Japan, come to my party, she said. It’ll be fun, she said.
My ears are being assaulted. People are laughing obnoxiously loud, speakers are blasting overplayed radio music, and even the strongest ale cannot make me enjoy this.
America abandoned me an hour ago. After dancing, he went off to fraternize with South Korea. Then to bother Mexico. Now he’s somewhere close. I can hear him making terrible jokes, but I fear if I start looking around the room I might make eye contact with someone and they will take that as an invitation to talk to me.
I am hovering in the corner where I look just unapproachable enough for people to realize that I’m mentally exhausted and desire no further socialization. All I want right now is to go home and change. Nothing appeals more to me right than curling up with my DS and a jar of mini pickles. I am addicted to those pickles. (I need help.)
I eye the door. It’s so close, yet so far away. Time is moving slowly. That might actually just be the effect of the strobe lights. Either way, I’ve been here for far too long.
Who am I? I used to be one of the most powerful countries in the world. I should not stand here and wallow in self-pity. I should get what I want. The door. Freedom.
I make a break for it. I rattle the handle. It won’t budge.
I punch myself in the face. Ow. Shit.
I’m still here. I suppose that means I am not dreaming. This pain is real. My suffering is endless. What have I done to deserve this?
Well, I guess I could think of a few things.
“Leaving so soon!?”
I jump. It’s the hostess.
“Are ya not havin’ fun?”
“Ireland, this is a wonderful party. Truly. But I must go home… you see, my dog, Hichiro…”
She’s grinning. “Sorry, but ya can’t leave until the party’s over. You’ll miss the best part!”
“The best part?”
“We’re about to play Chit Chat.”
I feel my throat going dry. “What is Chit Chat?”
“It’s a lot like… speed dating! We pair up with someone we don’t know well, make a lot of small-talk, then switch to a completely different stranger and start talking all over again. We do this for hours. Oooh, looks like it’s about to start!”