It’s just gone midnight. I don’t want Lorna in my hotel suite anymore. I want it back to myself. I want her to go. The heroin, though, she can leave here with me. We’ve had one hit. For some reason, I feel anxious. I want the next fix now. I don’t want to make out with Lorna. I don’t want a flashback. My sex drive has vanished. I felt drawn to Lorna earlier. Now I don’t, not in the slightest. I feel really uncomfortable. Although we only shot up heroin, I feel like I’ve been on the crack pipe. This isn’t how I usually feel on smack.
This is really strange. Maybe it was bad gear. Maybe that’s what it was. I want to ask Lorna if she feels strange too but I feel too strange in myself to talk. We’re lying on the bed in silence. At least we’ve got our clothes on. Her arm’s around my waist as she’s cuddling into me. I don’t like it. It doesn’t feel good. It doesn’t feel right. I don’t feel like I’m me anymore. This isn’t any kind of flashback. This is just like crack.
“I need another hit,” I say to Lorna eventually, once I’ve found the courage to use my voice.
She turns her back to me, preparing the hit on the bedside table. I light a cigarette in the hope it’ll make me feel relaxed. If the cigarette doesn’t make a difference, the hit should. It must be anxiety that I’m feeling. Heroin will sort that out for sure.
I push myself to sit upright on the bed. Leaning my back against the padded headboard, I open my eyes wider. I’m seeing in double vision. This is something that has only ever happened when I’ve speedballed, and I haven’t done that often.
Lorna passes me the filled syringe.
“Thanks,” I say, rolling back the sleeve of my pink cardigan. I look for a vein. It’s hard to see with double vision. “Can you find a vein for me, please?” I ask her.
Lorna takes my hand in her lap. She runs her fingers softly over my arm. It feels like spiders are crawling on my skin where she’s touching me. “Here’s a good one.” She wraps my tan belt around my arm, just above the elbow.
“Is this the same kind of heroin as last time?” I ask. I know the heroin in Australia is different from England because it’s white, not brown, and it’s stronger. But this wasn’t the feeling I had on it last night.
“There’s only one kind of heroin, Nicole, and this is it. This guy’s stuff is always powerful. It’s more pure.” She strokes my hair away from my face. “How are you feeling?”
“I feel fine,” I lie. I’m too scared to tell her the truth.
“Gimme your arm back. How can I give you a shot like that?”
I didn’t realise before, but now I notice my arms are wrapped around my waist. The tan belt acting as a tourniquet is hanging loose. I’m holding myself. It’s that self-protection, or self-consoling or something. I put my hand back in her lap. I want the fix. I need the fix. She inserts the needle into the vein on the inside of my elbow. She pulls back the plunger then pushes in.
I don’t feel better. If anything, I feel worse. I should be lying back, gouching out, but I’m not. I’m still sat upright. My unseeing eyes feel wide open. I’m thinking Lorna’s going to tie me up to the bed. She’s going to steal all my money and credit cards. She wants to take my designer clothes, shoes and handbags. She doesn’t really like me. I thought she did. But now I don’t think so. I’m convinced she’s here to rob me. That’s the reason she wants to hang out with me. She wants everything I have.