They found the bar on Yelp, which all three had agreed never to tell anyone. It was just a few doors over from the restaurant, and the night hadn’t felt over yet.
After succumbing to the pull of a third round, she goaded her boyfriend with words and elbows to tell Sid the story of when they had watched a drunk girl fling herself at him. “Like I wasn’t even there.”
Neil dutifully ran it down, through the confused phone call the next day. “I let Carol answer. Short call.” They all laughed, loud enough that people at the bar looked over despite the throbbing bass. “My buddy Barry at work, when I told him, he had the best reaction. He was so mad at me for giving her my real number.”
Sid leaned forward, the sofa cushion sliding under him. “Why?”
Smirking, Carol said, “Barry’s a douche.”
“He thinks infidelity is inevitable.” Neil didn’t make it clear if he was issuing a correction or giving support. “And he thought I was doing it wrong. He was all, ‘Dude, what are you doing? You get a second phone, keep it in your car, only check the messages.’”
“Again, like I wasn’t even there.”
Shaking his head, Sid sat back on the couch to look more relaxed. “A second phone? Really? That gets found. Google Voice made that outdated.”
Carol nodded and pointed. “Yeah, totally. And anyway, you can set your phone to automatically delete or hide certain messages.”
Sid looked at her across her boyfriend. She turned away and sipped her Moscow Mule. They both knew they had been a little too ready with this information. He rubbed his thumb across the raised letters of his beer bottle. They could only hope Neil hadn’t noticed.
Neil nodded along to the Kanye song that had just started, without seeming to realize he was doing so. “Yeah, man. It would get found. That’s some Walter White bullshit right there.”
She insisted on paying when they closed the tab. At each red light during the drive home, Sid took out his phone and balanced in his hand. Each time he stopped himself from sending her a text.