Jan 1:

Happy New Year everybody! Except, please, be quiet... I am majorly hungover. We went to a party last night. It was thrown by the roommate of Jim's friend Stephen. I'd never met Stephen before, but he was one of the guys Jim sometimes plays poker with. “He's a huge nerd,” Jim warned me.

“More than you?” I teased.

Jim made a face at me. “Hey, you have no idea what you're talking about. At least I've never dressed up like an elf.”

I didn't know what he was talking about and I didn't think I wanted to know. Anyway, Jim's friends Dave and Sue picked us up so that we could drink recklessly. Sue was going to be the designated driver of the night, since she was apparently pregnant. (Why is everyone freaking pregnant?) Jim and I had dinner beforehand, and he was kind of dressed up nice and looked, I have to admit, incredibly handsome. There was a part of me that wanted to tell him to forget the party and go back to his place to just fool around.

Stephen lived on the second floor of a three-story building, which thankfully looked like it had an elevator. Dave and Sue took the stairs while I waited with Jim for the elevator to come. It was one of those old elevators where you had to manually open the outer door in order to get inside. The door looked like it weighed a thousand pounds, and Jim was having a lot of trouble getting a good enough grip on the handle. He laced his fingers into the handle and he just couldn't get it open more than a couple of inches. “Goddamn it,” he said after his fifth unsuccessful try.

Finally, I just grabbed the door and opened it. I know Jim hates it when I help him, but it was just hard to watch him struggling with the door like that. I wasn't sure what was worse: watching him struggle or the look he gave me when I helped him.

We made it upstairs in one piece (barely—that elevator was sketchy) and we could tell where the party was by all the noise coming from outside and the dozen empty bottles of beer stacked outside the room. A guy opened the door for us and immediately recognized Jim, “Hey Jimmy, you made it!”

“Hey, Stephen,” Jim said. “This is Tessie.”

I shook Stephen's sweaty hand. I have to admit, Stephen was what I'd think of when I'd imagine a stereotypical nerd. First, he was really overweight. I mean, I'm overweight, but this guy was definitely obese. And the stained T-shirt with some horrible programming language joke on it wasn't doing him any favors either. Also, he had long hair that was tied in a ponytail. I absolutely hate long hair in men and I'm grateful that Jim keeps his hair cut very short. The long hair would have been bad enough, but he was also balding. Long hair + balding is such a bad combination. Overall, I think if Stephen kept a journal, he could have easily called it “Diary of an Ugly Man.”

“Tessie,” he said. “So good to finally meet you!” He winked at Jim. “Nice job, man.” The whole interaction made me feel very desirable.

We went over to the punch bowl to get a drink. After interacting with Stephen, Jim was looking all that much cuter. I couldn't believe we were going to be stuck at this party for at least another two hours until midnight. “I hope Stephen hooks up tonight,” Jim said, glancing at his friend. “He's had a rough year. Poor guy.”

I looked at Stephen, who was drinking a beer with another guy who looked about as undesirable as he was. I didn't think there was any chance he was hooking up tonight.

We each poured ourselves a glass of the punch. I took one sip and my entire throat burned. This punch was at least 90% vodka. I looked at Jim, who was coughing. “Jesus,” he said. “This stuff is high octane.”

“I think if we drink one glass of this, we're going to be wasted,” I said.

He grinned. “Well, bottom's up.”

Two glasses of punch later, we were both completely toasted. Neither of us are big drinkers and I think this was the first time we've ever been drunk together. It was... interesting. Jim gets horny when he's drunk. We went into a far corner of the room and he pulled me into his lap and started kissing me and touching me like we were the only people in the room. He had his hands in places it should definitely not have been in a public place, but I was drunk too and wanted him just as bad. We couldn't keep our hands off each other. We were making out like the ship was going down.

It didn't even occur to me what a spectacle we were until I noticed that there were a couple of guys next to us who were staring and snickering. I heard one of them say, “Hey, look at that.”

Even though I was drunk, I felt embarrassed. I guess we were kind of a freak show: the really ugly girl and the cripple making out. I felt really self-conscious all of a sudden and pulled away.

“What's wrong?” Jim asked, looking up at me with bleary eyes.

“Um,” I said. “Maybe we shouldn't be doing this with... you know, so many people around.”

“Oh,” he said. He thought for a second. “Do you want to find a room?”

We found the coat room. I sat down on the coat-covered bed and Jim wasted no time spreading my legs apart under my dress. He lowered his head and started pulling my panties down with his teeth. I couldn't believe he was about to go down on me in the coat room of a big party. Any second, someone could have walked in. It was so hot, it was unbelievable.

I only had about a minute of bliss before we heard the doorknob turning. I quickly sat up and covered my bare bottom with my dress, just in the nick of time.

It turned out to be Stephen. “Hey, you guys,” he said in a mischievous voice. “What are you up to in here?”

“What is it?” Jim asked, a little irritably.

“We're all watching the ball drop in Times Square on TV,” Stephen said. “I'm rounding people up.”

“That already happened like three hours ago,” Jim pointed out.

“You coming or not?”

We figured our cover was blown anyway, so we went out to watch the ball drop. It might be exciting in New York, but it's definitely pretty lame on the west coast. It didn't really matter though, because Jim and I made out through the whole thing. This was the first time I've ever had a guy to kiss at midnight and it was just amazing. Totally worth this horrible hangover.

Jan 8:

I haven’t talked much about work lately, I guess. Work sucks and is incredibly boring, except for the fact that I get see Jim sometimes for lunch. He’ll occasionally drop by during the day, but generally doesn’t do that because he’s pretty busy at the help desk. I ask him how he could tolerate so many stupid questions all day and he teases me with some of the stupid questions I’ve asked him over the last few months. To be honest, I don’t even try to fix my computer any more now that I know he’s around to help me.

Anyway, today my boss Rich called me into his office. I thought it had something to do with the project I was working on, but instead he had a laptop sitting on his desk and a frustrated look on his face. He asked me how I was doing and I knew he was somehow leading into something, although I wasn’t sure what. I told him I was fine and asked him how he was doing.

“Not good,” he told me. “I just bought this laptop for home and I’m having some issues with it.”

“Oh,” I said. I had a bad feeling.

“Tessie,” he said. “Are you still… um, seeing Jim?”

Awkward, so awkward. “Yes…”

“Do you think he might be able to take a look at my computer?” Rich asked. “As a personal favor?”

The computer helpdesk guys are NOT supposed to help with personal computers and Rich knows it. But of course, Jim has helped me out with my own laptop a bunch of times and once he fixed Sandra’s. Although that’s at his home, not at work.

“I could ask him,” I said.

Rich acted really happy and grateful. I don’t think saying no was an option. I hoped Jim wasn’t too busy.

I called the helpdesk and a guy named Tony answered. I know all the helpdesk guys really well, so I asked him to put me through to Jim. “Sure, Tessie,” he said. The guys at the helpdesk are all super nice actually, even though they’re kind of dorky. I’m sorry I never got to know them earlier. “Computer helpdesk,” Jim answered.

“Hey, it’s Tessie.”

“Tessie!” I love calling Jim because he always sounds so completely excited to hear from me. I mean, he’s friendly enough when he answers the phone, unlike some of the other guys who sound like they want to kill you for calling, but he always sounds so happy when I tell him it’s me. “What’s up?”

“Don’t kill me,” I said. “My boss brought his laptop from home and needs help.”

Jim didn’t hesitate. “I’ll come up during my lunch break.”

I felt all warm and fuzzy. Here he was, giving up his lunch so that he could make me look good in front of my boss. I’m so lucky.

I told my boss, who acted really happy and grateful all over again. Honestly, I love having a boyfriend who is a computer expert. In this day and age, it’s almost like dating Superman. Except when I’m a damsel in distress, it’s not so much that some supervillain has kidnapped me, but rather my internet connection has spontaneously refused to work. I know that sounds a little melodramatic, but I know I’m not the only one who’s been reduced to tears by a malfunctioning computer.

Anyway, Jim came up to our floor and did his magic on Rich’s computer. I don’t know what was wrong with the machine, but he was here for his whole lunch break, which I felt guilty about because like I said, it isn’t his job to fix people’s personal computers. Rich bought him a ham sandwich from the cafeteria to thank him, which Jim looked slightly annoyed by. I guess when you’re making a solid six figures, it’s worth a little more than a ham sandwich to give up your lunch break.

Jim made me promise that I’d go out to dinner tonight to make up for it. I offered to pay, but he refused as usual. I’ll pay him back though, don’t worry.

Jan 12:

I guess this is something I've never posted about, but it's something I think about: Jim's scars.

I have no scars. Well, there's this faint scar on my knee from some glass that cut me when I was about 12. And I had my tonsils out, so theoretically there are scars there. But other than that, I don't really have much in the way of scars. No huge slices across my chest or anything like that.

Jim, on the other hand, has a shitload of scars. One is really old, from an appendectomy when he was 10. The rest are from when he got hurt when he was 17. I've asked him what they were at various times or he told me when he saw me examining them curiously. This is my count of his scars:

1) A pretty long one on the back of his neck from when they did some kind of fusion or something back there.

2) One on the back of his hip, from where they took some bone to put in his neck. (I don't quite understand this, but nevertheless, there's a small scar there.)

3) A pretty nice sized scar from when they cut open his belly. He said that's something they do when you come into the hospital bleeding from somewhere and they can't figure out where.

4) There's a long scar along his right thigh, which was apparently broken and had to be operated on to fix it.

5) Also on his belly, a scar from a feeding tube he had early in his injury.

6) On his neck, he has a scar from a breathing tube he used to have.

7) Just barely below his hairline there are two little circular scars. I didn't even notice them for a while, but apparently they are from this halo brace that was screwed into his skull. Ouch.

To be honest, I find the scars very sexy. I've never dated a guy with so many scars before. When I look at them, I feel affection for him because he's been through something terrible and he survived, and I think he's become a better man for it.

To be continued...