This story uses italics (including this section) and bold so I recommend using a browser to read it. The story starts slowly so please be patient. All characters are eighteen years or older
“Son, are you trying to tell me that this is really your driver’s license?”
It was a Friday night at the end of my sophomore year at college. A cop had pulled me over as I was driving home.
“Yes it is, Officer.”
“And your last name is really Chevrolet?”
“That’s my last name. Just like it was the last name of Louis Chevrolet, the co-founder of the Chevrolet car company.”
I hated it when people wouldn’t believe that my last name was Chevrolet. If it was Ford, they wouldn’t think twice. Now if it was “Google” or “FedEx”, I could understand them being doubtful.
“Are you any kin of his?”
“Not that I know of, Officer. He was born in Switzerland in 1878 and the Chevrolet I’m descended from came to the US from France in 1795.”
“I find it hard to believe that anyone is really named Chevrolet.”
“Can I show you an article from my high school that has my name in it?”
“That’d be nice.”
I learned long ago that seeing my name on a website somehow made it real for people. I pulled up an article from my senior year. The picture with the article showed me with short, dark blond hair and blue eyes.
“Here you go, Officer,” I said as I handed him my phone.
“Wrestler, huh? Made district semi-finals?”
“In the 170 weight class.” For a school as small as ours, it was an impressive performance.
“Have you been drinking tonight?” the cop asked as he handed me back my phone.
“No, Officer.” Fortunately, I hadn’t.
“Then why do I smell alcohol?”
I pointed my thumb to the passenger seat. “Because my stupid little sister got sloshed at a party. She called me to come get her when her date wouldn’t take no for an answer.”
“Todd!” squealed my sister Ashlynne. “Why did you tell him that?”
“Because he was going to want to know why I’m driving a drunk girl home. Isn’t that right, Officer?”
“I’m not drunk!”
“That question was going to come up,” said the officer in a slow drawl. He seemed to be enjoying our conversation. A small town cop having a little fun. I wasn’t. “Roll down her window.”
I rolled down Ashlynne’s window as the cop walked around to her side of the car. I had no idea why he had pulled me over. If he wrote me a ticket, the cost of my car insurance would explode.
“My, you are a sporty little model,” said the cop to my sister. I ground my teeth – I was sick of car jokes and puns. “Do you have any ID?”
“No,” she said in a small voice. “I was on a date and I didn’t think I would need my wallet.”
I offered, “I can show you a picture of her with her name on our school website.”
“That’d be good,” said the officer.
I pulled up a web page that had Ashlynne on it. “You’ll have to trust me that she’s not an unrelated Chevrolet.”
The cop laughed. “I don’t know if there’s another Chevrolet family in the whole state.”
I reached over and handed him my phone. He looked at the web page. “Cheerleader captain? Miss Chevrolet must be great at revving up a crowd.” The cop held his flashlight so it wasn’t shining in Ashlynne’s eyes but he could clearly see her face. Ashlynne was the quintessential cheerleader – 5’5″, blue-eyed, blond, pretty, big tits, firm body.
“How old are you?”
“Are you in this car of your own free will?”
“Do you want me to take you home instead of your brother?”
Mom and Dad would hit the roof if their little princess was driven home by a cop. As it was, it was going to be a challenge to get Ashlynne in the house without Mom and Dad noticing she was sloshed.
“Making sure you’re okay.” The cop turned off his flashlight and walked around to my window. “Now, you probably know why I pulled you over…”
“I have no idea.”
“You were doing 36 in a 35 mile per hour speed zone.”
I bit my tongue. My insurance rate was going to go through the roof because I was going one mile over the speed limit while rescuing my asshole sister from a bad party scene.
“Now, I can write you a ticket,” continued the cop. “Or you can come blow into a little tube in my car and I’ll give you just a warning.”
“Fuck!” I said.
“I’m sorry, Officer. You’re only doing your job. I have to drive back to the dorms tonight and then get up ridiculously early tomorrow for my Geology final. Losing all this sleep because of my stupid sister is killing me.” I exhaled to clear my mind. “Let’s go.”
I got out of the car and we walked back to his cruiser. He motioned me to get into the passenger seat. I sat down in the seat and then blew into a tube he held for me.
“No alcohol,” said the cop.
I started to get out of the cruiser when the cop motioned me to be still. “Let’s talk while I fill out the warning.” As he was writing, he asked, “Why didn’t your mom or dad get your sister?”
“Because they would have been furious that she had drunk alcohol and that she had gone to a party where people were drinking.”
The cop shook his head. “So she feared her parents’ anger more than possibly being raped by her date?” That pulled me up short. I hadn’t thought of it that way. “Too many parents are like that. She was lucky she could call you.”
He silently filled out the warning, letting that sink in. Ashlynne was lucky that I was home tonight. I lived in the dorms, though I’d be moving home in a few days. I came home tonight to meet with the owner of the fast food place I’ve worked at since high school about a summer job. I had been about to head back to the dorms when Ashlynne had called. The cop finished the paperwork and began typing into his computer. “Be easy on her. She needs to have someone to get her when she’s in an unsafe situation.”
I sighed. I knew the cop was right. However, I really wanted to chew my sister out when I got back into the car. “I will.”
He moved away from the computer and his voice lightened as he handed me my warning. “I put on your record that you were cooperative and had gone out of your way to help a drunk friend, so hopefully the next cop to pull you over will cut you some slack.”
“Thanks!” I said. I was surprised at the kindness.
“Now go home and good luck on your final tomorrow.”
* * * *
After dinner that next day, Ashlynne came into my room and closed the door.
“Thanks again for getting me yesterday.”
“It was no problem.”
“Thanks for taking Mom and Dad to the living room. I expected you to have left before I came in and for one of them to be in the kitchen waiting for me.”
The plan we had agreed to in the car was that I would go in first and that she would come in ten minutes later. When I came in, I told Mom and Dad that I had something important to discuss with them and that I wanted to talk in the living room.
I shrugged my shoulders. “It wasn’t a big deal. I had something to discuss with them.”
“How did the final go?”
“Well. Turned out that sleep wasn’t an issue. A bus drove us out to where our final was. I slept the whole drive and felt fresh when I got there. I identified everything I was asked about and had a good answer to every question. On last night – call me if you’re ever in a situation like that again. I won’t be thrilled, but I’d much rather you be safe.”
I felt awkward being nice to Ashlynne. She and I had fought all the time growing up. One of the things I had liked about college was that I was away from her. I had hardly seen her since last summer as my roommate’s mom had gotten me a job during Christmas break working at an amusement park and I had stayed with them for all but Christmas Eve and Christmas Day. I had changed a lot in that time.
Ashlynne asked, “Is there something I could do for you?”
“Could you set me up with a cheerleader? A smart cheerleader with a great personality?”
“Almost every cheerleader I know who isn’t a bitch is dating someone.”
“Oh well. It was worth a try.” Nothing ventured, nothing gained. “How about you tell me how you wound up in that situation?”
Ashlynne had been standing while I was sitting in my desk chair, but now she sat down on my bed.
“That’s fair.” She sighed. “I’ve been wanting for a long time to go out with a smart athlete and last night, I thought I had finally gone out with someone who was right for me. You don’t know Jeffrey as he transferred to our school this year. Offensive lineman. Shot putter. He’s also in most of my AP classes. A really nice guy I thought. I think he found me intimidating as it was a long time before he would talk with me. It wasn’t until a few weeks ago that he showed much interest in me. I finally told him that if he wanted to ask me out that he needed to do it soon as school was almost over. So he asked me out for last night.”
Ashlynne leaned forward, apparently happy to have an audience for her story. Ashlynne was a talker and always dominated our conversations the few times that we did talk.
“So we went out to dinner and had a great time. He was so different than the other football players. Instead of talking about only football, he talked about books, movies and music. We have very similar tastes. He seemed thoughtful and caring. I was thinking ‘Wow! This is great.’ We went to a movie and we held hands and kissed during the movie. When we got outside, I suggested we go someplace where we could be alone.”
“So everything was great to that point.”
“Yes. Best date I had ever been on. As we drove, I decided that I was going to let Jeffrey do whatever he wanted as long as our clothes stayed on.”
“Then everything fell apart. He drove us to a house that was hosting a football team party. I was not happy about that. He said that we would be there for only a few minutes and then he left me to go find someone. I decided to have a daiquiri while I waited. When Jeffrey didn’t come back, I went looking for him and found him with some football players. It was awful. It was like his IQ dropped 30 points in their company. The only thing they would talk about was football games and football practices.”
Ashlynne’s face was getting flushed in anger. “I had finished my daiquiri and someone handed me another one. I drank it and fumed while he talked with his buddies instead of me. I was about to tell Jeffrey to take me home when a football player came up to Jeffrey and slapped him on the back. Jeffrey grabbed my hand and pulled me upstairs. As I was climbing the stairs, I realized I was drunk; that someone had spiked the second daiquiri.”
“Jeffrey pulled me into a bedroom and closed the door. The room reeked. The bed was a mess. Couples apparently had been taking turns in the room and Jeffrey had been waiting for our turn to come up.”
The look on Ashlynne’s face turned from anger to fear.
“I was scared. I had been dragged into a room without being asked and now I was alone with a really big guy. Jeffrey said ‘We’ve got some privacy now. Let’s lay down on the bed.’ At this point, I was completely out of the mood. I told Jeffrey that I wanted to go home. He said that I had wanted to go someplace where we could be alone and here we were. He tried to kiss me. I dodged away. He said, ‘What’s wrong? You were kissing me earlier.’ I said that I had been comfortable then but I wasn’t comfortable now. I stepped away from him and he followed me. I kept saying that I wanted to go home and he kept saying that we were alone now just like I wanted. Finally, he lunged at me and missed. I got behind him and kicked him in the back of the knee. He went down. The bedroom had a bathroom. I ran in there, locked the door and called you. Once you agreed to get me, I yelled through the door that you were on your way and that you were a champion wrestler. I recited every tournament you’ve ever won and a few more I made up. Jeffrey tried to talk me out of the bathroom, but I refused. Once you texted me that you had arrived, I opened the bathroom door and Jeffrey let me leave the room. Then you took me home.”
I thought Ashlynne’s story over. Had Ashlynne blown it all out of proportion? Had Jeffrey realized he was being stupid when Ashlynne locked herself in the bathroom and if she had come out, would he had taken her home? Maybe. Or maybe Jeffrey would have fucked her against her will. Too many football players at my old high school thought that every girl that showed interest in them wanted to fuck them. I wished that they taught positive consent at my old high school, but anything about sex was verboten.
“You did the right thing in calling me. I’m glad that I could come get you.”
Ashlynne sprang off the bed and gave me a hug. “Thanks again.” She sat back down on the bed. “How was college?”
“Great up until the very end, where it really sucked.”
“How did it suck?”
“In a sucky way.”
I turned back to my computer and brought up a video that I had been watching before Ashlynne came in.
“That’s all you’re going to tell me? I tell you all the details of my harrowing date and all you’re going to tell me about your year in college is that at the end it sucked?”
I shrugged, grabbed my headphones and lifted them towards me head.
Ashlynne shot up. “God, you’re the biggest jerk. Why do I have to have such a loser for a big brother?”
I never told Ashlynne or my parents anything that I didn’t have to. My parents were so uptight that my doing something the least bit wrong would set them off. But Ashlynne had a point – she had told me all the details of her date when I had asked and now I was stonewalling her. As Ashlynne stormed across the room, I began regretting blowing her off. When she reached the door, I said, “Okay. I’ll tell you more but you have to promise to tell none of this to Mom and Dad.”
“I promise,” said Ashlynne as she crossed back to my bed.
“Start of the year in the dorms, I went trawling for freshmen girls. I found one named Mandy that I hit it off with. Mandy is very cute, very smart and lots of fun.”
“Is she good in bed?” Ashlynne said it kind of joking, kind of seriously.
None of your fucking business.
“She is very FUN. Anyways, after a couple of weeks we went out. We dated the whole year. It was great – she was my best girlfriend ever.”
“My plan was to visit her regularly this summer. Mandy’s family lives a little over an hour from here. Work and Mandy were the sum total of my summer plans.” I took a big breath. “Thursday, Mandy had her last final in the morning and then her family moved her out of the dorms.”
“Why didn’t you help?”
“Mandy’s sister Brooke goes to the university too – just got her degree – and Brooke and I don’t get along.”
“While Mandy was having her final, I helped my roommate Zach take his stuff out to his car. The dorms were a madhouse with too many cars for not a lot of spaces, so we had to haul his stuff a major distance. We bitched about the dorms the whole time. After we loaded the last of his stuff, Zach turned to me and said, ‘What would you think about getting an apartment next year instead of going back to the dorms?’ I said I liked the idea and that I’d research it.”
“Do Mom and Dad know you’re thinking of getting an apartment?”
“It was the important discussion we had last night.” Really none of her business. “As I walked back to the dorms, I had a brilliant idea – why not live with Mandy instead of Zach? Mom and Dad would probably freak and cut me off financially, but Mandy and I still might be able to afford it.”
“Mom and Dad would freak out.”
I shrugged. “Maybe. Parents aren’t as strict on juniors in college, particularly if they don’t have a little sister in high school. Regardless, I was looking on my laptop at apartments near the university when I heard a knock. I looked up as Mandy came in. ‘Mandy! I was just thinking about you! What are you doing here?’ ‘I can only stay a minute. My parents surprised Brooke with a summer vacation touring Europe. Airfare, Eurail pass and spending money.’ ‘Great for her!’ ‘And my parents surprised me by giving me the exact same trip. Brooke and I are going to tour Europe together. As I’m not going to see you for the summer, let’s break up and get back together in the fall. Gotta go!’ And she left.” I sighed. “I was stunned. I sat there in shock for ten minutes. Finally, I decided that we needed to talk this out. I called Mandy, but it went to voicemail. She texted me back that she’s crazy busy right now, but she’ll get back to me later. Then she never got back to me.”
“And she’s gone to Europe.”
“I think so, but I don’t know squat. What I do know is that everything I was looking forward to this summer won’t happen. Living together is out. Suckety suck suck suck.”
“Are you going to get back together with her in the fall?”
“Maybe.” I got up and started pacing. “She was a great girlfriend and it’s not her fault that her parents surprised her with a trip to Europe. She was looking forward to being with me this summer as much as I was looking forward to being with her. Her sister isn’t dating anyone and will be looking to pick up guys. I’d guess that it was her idea that Mandy break up with me so they can prowl together. Right now, I don’t want to forgive her. But will that change when I see her in the fall? It’s easy to forgive a hot girl who knows how to turn you on. There are few women in my engineering classes, I won’t be in the dorms to trawl freshman girls and I don’t know how easy it will be to meet girls at our apartment. By not getting back together with her, I could be cutting off my nose to spite my face.”
I sat back down. “So this summer is going to suck big time unless I somehow hook up with a nice girl who’s open to dating only for the summer.” I turned back to the computer and picked up my headphones. “Get out of here so I can cry in my beer.”
* * * *
After that weekend, things changed between Ashlynne and me. I rarely saw her as I was closing every night except Friday and she had two more weeks of school. When we did run into each other, we didn’t have any fights and in fact were friendly. Ashlynne graduated as the valedictorian with a perfect 4.0 grade point average. The Monday morning after Ashlynne’s graduation, I came down the stairs to find Ashlynne in the kitchen eating breakfast in a bikini. Mom and Dad had already left for work.
“Good morning,” I said.
My sister had been reading a book while eating non-fat yogurt with some healthy, high-fiber cereal added. I pulled out a box of Cap’n Crunch and poured myself a big bowl.
“I don’t think I’ve ever seen you eat breakfast in a bikini before.”
Ashlynne laughed. “I slept in late and as soon as I finish breakfast, I’m going over to a friend’s to hang out at her pool all day. How was work last night?”
“Same old, same old; which is a good thing. Work is only interesting when bad things happen.”
“I was wondering – what major was Mandy? Engineering?”
“I didn’t picture you as the type to date a women’s studies major.”
I shrugged. “She wasn’t how I pictured a women’s studies major to be and I did picture myself dating someone as cute as Mandy, so I decided to give it a try. It was a little rough at first because Mandy was so big into positive consent, but it worked out. We had a lot of long, interesting discussions that opened my eyes to what was going on around me.”
“Have you forgiven Mandy for going to Europe?”
“Umm…No. It really pisses me off that she’d suddenly unilaterally change our relationship. Our relationship had been all about communication and mutual agreement. When she gets back from Europe, we’ll meet and talk things over. I’ll decide then if I want to get back together with her.” The more I got over the shock of our breakup, the more doubtful I was that we’d get back together. “Regardless, I’m looking to date someone this summer; somebody to have fun with. Speaking of that, I hope I wasn’t too pushy when I asked you to set me up with a cheerleader.”