I'm not sure how long I laid awake. The last thing I remembered was the cat, after several minutes, jumping back up onto my legs, walking slowly up to stand on my chest and staring into my face for a few seconds. "Sorry," I said. That seemed to satisfy him, and he sauntered back to my feet and draped across them.
I'm not sure how long I slept after that, but the sun was streaming into the living room when I woke up. I could hear a radio and chattering coming from the kitchen. Before I sat up, I glanced at my feet to see if the cat still there. He was gone, so I stretched loudly, swung my feet down to the carpet and stood with a groan. I started to wander into the kitchen and see what was up, but I stopped when the question of what I was wearing occurred to me. I glanced down. Just boxers. I tried to work out whether boxers were pajama-like enough to walk around in or if they were too underwear-like. Deciding that I shouldn't take any chances, I looked around for my clothes. They were nowhere to be found. So, I shrugged and headed into the kitchen.
"Hey!" yelled Cami, Sam's roommate, "there's a little girl in here, dude!"
"What?" I shrugged. They were eating pancakes, which smelled delicious. Amy was sitting at the table behind a giant stack of pancakes with a candle stuck in the middle.
"Simon! We're having a birthday party!" Amy yelled.
"Yes," said Sam, standing and walking over to me, "we are. Unfortunately for you, stinky birthday-forgetting pig-men in their underwear are not allowed." She grabbed me by my nipple and started dragging me back into the living room.
"Ouch!" I yelled. "Can I at least get some coffee?"
"Not until you've showered," she said, squeezing harder.
Amy was laughing her head off in the kitchen. "Take a shower, pig man!" she yelled.
"Okay, okay," I said, pulling Sam's hand from my nipple. "Where are my clothes?"
"I'm washing them," she said. "Don't get used to it." She was pushing me toward the bathroom.
"Whoa," I said. "There are some very important things in my pockets," I said.
"I took everyting out and put it in a bag," she said. "Don't worry." We arrived at the bathroom door.
"Sam," I said, bracing myself against the door jamb. "I would really like a cup of coffee first. It would help me wake up."
"Oh, really?" she said. "Do you know what I would like, Simon? I would like to wash these." With surprising quickness she grabbed my boxers and whipped them down to my knees.
"Hey!" I tried to grab them, but they fell down around my ankles.
"Cold in here?" she giggled, and I jumped out of the boxers and slammed the door to the bathroom.
I could hear her laughing outside the door as she turned to go. "Yes, it is, in fact!" I yelled after her.
"It's seventy-five degrees, Simon!" she screamed back, laughing.
I was going to yell back that I was hot-natured, but then I couldn't remember if hot-natured meant you always felt hot and you wanted it colder or if it meant that you always felt cold and you wanted it to be hotter. So, I just started the water and took care of my business as I waited for it to heat up.
The hot shower felt really good, and I stood under the powerful stream for a long time, trying to sort my thoughts and come up with a plan. I wasn't really sure what to do. I had more questions than answers. First, where is Amy's mom? I had no idea. Second, where the hell is my car? Probably towed. That I could do something about. Third, who, if anyone, is Romeo di Marti? I could Google him when... Damn! My laptop was in the car. Damn! Well, that settled it. The first thing to do was to find the car.
"Here's your clothes," Sam said, bursting through the door. "You'll have to go commando until your shorts are done."
"I'm all warmed up now," I teased her. "Care to see a more accurate representation?"
"I'd love to, but I have to go throw up," she said, closing the door behind her as she left.
When I was dried and dressed, I went to the kitchen. "Any more coffee?" I asked Cami, who was sitting at the table in front of a computer.
"Yes," she said, not even looking up at me.
"Great," I grabbed the pot, but it was empty. "Where?" I asked, turning to her.
"The beans are in the fridge, the grinder is in the cupboard, the water is... should I go on?"
"No," I sighed, setting the pot back down.
I went over to the fridge and opened it. The coffee beans were in a little bag on the top shelf. As I reached for it, I saw a paper sack on the countertop beside the fridge. Peeking into it, I saw my things. Relieved, I inventoried them as I put them back into the pockets where they belonged. When I got to my wallet, I opened it and pulled out a $20. Walking over to Cami, I slapped it onto the table beside her computer. "If you'll make a pot of coffee," I said.
She looked from the computer toward the bill and then looked up at me. "Is it tough to be so lazy and stupid?" she asked.
"No," I said, "but it's expensive. What do you say?"
"Okay." She snagged the $20 from the table and got up. "I was going to make a pot anyway."
I sighed and shook my head. "Where's Amy?" I asked.
"They're in Sam's room," she said, opening the fridge.
I grabbed the phone from its cradle on the counter and dialed the main number for the police station.
"Who are you calling?" Cami asked.
"Police," I said.
"You know the number by heart?"
"Fort Worth Police Department," the voice on the other end said. "How can I direct your call?"
"I think my car was towed," I said.
"God, what a loser," Cami muttered.
"Please hold," said the voice.