"Nicole, where are you going?" Becca screamed as I exited the backdoor of Chase’ house, budlight in hand.

I just couldn't be in there anymore. Everyone was talking about nothing, and I couldn't pretend that I cared for one second longer. I just couldn't.

I loved my friends, but I couldn't for the life of me begin to understand why they seemed to care so much about what everyone else at this dumb school thought about them.

Becca called my name again, but I ignored her, and walked down the patio. She could text me if she wanted to, or she go back to flirting with Nick. Ew. Nick was so boring.

I stared across the backyard, threw back the last few gulps of the beer, and the rarity of my solitude made me more and more aware of my undeniable misery. How was it that everyone inside was so excited by this evening? It was the same party we'd had a million times before, and I could write a novel relaying the extent of the monotony. I tried explaining this to my friends a few times, but they just acted as though I was crazy, so it became an internal monologue of whining instead. I was always around people, but incredibly internal. Predominantly internal, in fact. Except no one else ever knew that. Poor lonely, popular Nicole. I was aware that these weren't real problems.

"Nicole! Can you come back inside? We're up next for beer pong!"

Ugh, of course we were. 

"On my way!" I shouted cheerfully and skipped back up the stairs of the porch.

"Sorry about that. I thought my Mom was calling me so I freaked out, but it was just Courtney sending a million texts," I lied, as I gestured to my blackberry. I hated lying, but sometimes it was necessary. It would make Becca wildly uncomfortable if I explained that I needed five minutes away from the party because I had to ruminate over how meaningless life is. I needed another beer. Or something with vodka in it.