Cool glass, never cold as it never saw the inside of my fridge. I carefully, with a combination of teeth and fingernails too short to do much, begin to peel off the top covering. The foil finally slips off, revealing either a cap or a cork. If it's a cap, it's twist off and chug time. If it's a cork, then the fun begins.

A frantic search, through drawers and cupboards to find the corkscrew. Ah, here it is. That lovely, silvery instrument that brings me temporary solace from my hellish torture. Neatly centre the metal disk over the top, begin to twist. No different than screwing something into the wall. Arms rising, in honour to the deities within above and around us, the thin flat hands at the end now pointing nearly vertically and parallel with the screw itself. A slow yet gentle push on the arms, firm enough to give them mobility to complete the task, yet slow enough to not shatter the glass. A satisfying Twonk and the cork extricates itself from the bottle's magnificent neck. I remove the screw and carry both bottle and cork to my chair. The wine glass, so perfect in its glory. The long stem of quartz crystal is a blessing to caress. The patterns in the glass so familiar, so nystallgic that I mindlessly reminisce outloud for the benefit of anyone on skype with me, if any.

Oh you cheap, sweet red wine! Your sickly vapours arise from the bottle in a miasma of the impending hangover. Your bloody essence cascades gently into my cup, and I stop about an inch from the top. No sense in overfilling you. I don't want to waste a single milliliter of your pleasurable goodness!

That first sip divine, I taste the sweetness, the warm summer sun on the grapes, ripening on the vine. The cool water spritzed onto them, giving them life. I swirl the divinity in my mouth, then swallow, feeling the warmth spread through my body. It's simply pleasure, in its purest form. There is nothing that can harm me now, not here, not in my own private garden of Eden.

The glass tips again, another sip. Now I'm used to the cloying sweetness of the sugars, and I don't necessarily sip, but I don't guzzle, either. By the second glass my hands have stopped shaking, and the emotional cork is starting to loosen. I can keep a dry eye during most sad things. I observe it from the outside, through a sheet of clear glass.

Sleepiness and a pleasant fog envelop me. There's no blurred vision, yet. It's only a matter of time before the real effects set in. I love how this takes away my pain. Like warm soft hands, stroking me and soothing my grief, my torment. Glass no. 3 is sometimes where I stop. Enough to knock me out once I rest not enough to get me drunk. But tonight is sheer hell and I don't stop at three.

Glass by glass the bottle's goodness slowly disappears. By glass no. 5 I'm starting to sob, the screaming renting the still air and shattering it like so much crystal and glass, the shards chiming and clinking to the floor in a crash of emotions that I can no longer stop..

By the ninth and final glass I can't stand up without help. I set the wine glass on the small table and stagger off to bed. My tortuous agony is abated. For a while, at least.

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