Author's Notes: I've received numerous emails asking where one could find other stories written by me. So to save time answering each email, I've decided to include a list of stories and where they can be found. While Hero-Psycho-Dreamer is the second story I've written alone for Nifty, my writing partner, Josh and I have written several stories together.
In the High School Section of Nifty:
Moonlight Will Prevail, July 8 2001: This short story is one of my favorites though it was the most difficult to put to paper. It deals with Josh's troubled childhood and chronicles the events that forced him to move to Harrisburg Pennsylvania. I still tear up when I read this, very emotional for us to bring to life. Forgive the numerous editing problems and mis-spelled words, this was one of the first stories we attempted to write together.
Love of Strange Medicine, Feb 1 2004: Sadly this is the last story Josh and I wrote together. We had plans to make this a multiple chapter series but life, as it has a way of doing, intervened and Josh passed away due to complications from his bursting appendix. I altered it slightly to make it a standalone short story. I felt it summed up his hopeful, positive outlook on life and I posted it as a tribute to his passing.
In the Encounter Section of Nifty:
Another Rainy Night Without You, June 2 2002: Pretty much a stroke story and the only one we ever attempted to write. This story was born out of a man we saw often while partying at the local gay bar, Stallions, in Harrisburg. His pure animal aura and the predatory way he stalked through the club searching for men inspired us to create our version of his character. Again Josh used his fascination with the rain and envisioned a complex back story for this man's nightly habits. As a side note, those of you that have read Blind Revolution, this is Gabriel's first appearance in written form. Much like Conversation on the Stairs deals with Justin and his time spent alone, ARNWY shows us Gabriel after BR takes place and before Revolution Calling begins. Apparently Josh had big ideas for Gabriel long before we began writing the story. More of Josh's influence than mine, but he always liked the pure animal instinct of the character.
In the Sci-Fi Section of Nifty:
Moment of Clarity, April 9 2004: My first story I posted on Nifty without Josh. Though I think it's one of the better stories I've written, the readers of Nifty did not agree. But I'm proud of the end result and stand by the statements I made. Any explanation I make might ruin the story for first time readers. Afterwards, feel free to email me with any questions or comments. I'll try to explain what I was going for.
In the Boy-Band Section of Nifty: We wrote the bulk of our stories here. Josh would have told you it was because I was obsessed with Justin Timberlake. My version is quite a bit different but that hardly matters now.
Let It Rain, July 30 2001: A story inspired by a song Josh heard in the mid-nineties. Whenever we would get together and brainstorm, he would title each idea Let It Rain until the story evolved away from his vision of the title. After two long years of every idea being titled Let It Rain, I told him we would just write the damn story and be done with it. Just so I would never have to hear the title again. All in all, I am happy with the story for what it is, a dark look into a love gone wrong. For those of you keeping track, another story about the rain and the emotions Josh felt for it.
Time Stood Still, December 1 2003: Time Stood Still was conceived late one night after Josh and I had been talking and kicking around story ideas over a few beers. (okay several pitchers of beer) This song came on the radio, Time Stood Still, and I immediately fell in love with the lyrics and the story the song described. Convincing Josh to agree took some time and fancy bullshit but in the end we threw ourselves into the idea. At the beginning of each chapter, we included the portion of lyrics that inspired that particular setting in the story. Constructing a story around music lyrics was a daunting task for us both but I think the end result was well worth the aggravation.
Conversation on the Stairs, May 15 2002: Though not really a sequel to Time Stood Still, I urge readers to first read TSS before this one. This story deals vaguely with the aftermath of Time Stood Still, kind of secondhand look into one of the characters between TSS. Also makes some statements about coming to terms with love. Kind of sad in the end but I think it sums up nicely.
Like The Rain, December 11 2002: Wow, the first story we posted online. The idea is great, the writing is somewhat juvenile but at the time we were so proud of it. The story evolved because of Josh's obsession with the rain and the Clint Black song Like the Rain. While the song never grew on me, his pure enthusiasm for the story inspired me. At the time, I was watching Babylon 5 quite religiously and I included several references throughout the story. I've always wanted to go back and fix all the problems with the story, including several subplots that we lost over the twenty chapters. Maybe one day. The basic plot is mine but Josh, true to his nature, wove his darker side through most of the scenes. And you get to see the evolution of our writing style as we grew and learned from our mistakes.
Blind Revolution, September 14 2003: Josh had this fascination with gritty characters and the idea of showing their evolution through plausible circumstances. Or how he put it, to write a story where we see the revolution of thought through the main characters. Envisioned as a trilogy, Blind Revolution was our most ambitious project. The subject matter is one I was not sure if the readers of Nifty would embrace. Dark and sometimes disturbing, Blind Revolution proved to be a successful venture for us garnishing several Boy Band Awards over the two years we posted it and more fans than we could ever hope to have. Sadly, the trilogy was never finished. Josh and I stopped writing together due to many circumstances in our private lives and though he planned on finishing the trilogy alone, he never got the opportunity. I've been asked to continue the story by several fans. But the story itself was Josh's and I feel it would be somehow disrespectful to his memory to carry on without him by my side. Blind Revolution did end clearing up the main conflict so new readers can enjoy it and still have an ending though we left numerous things open for the sequels.
As always, I can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org for any questions or comments regarding this or any story I've written. Thanks again, Angel.
Chapter Three: Before the Storm
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Slamming the door shut behind him, Noah Chandler leaned against the door and tried to block out the sound of voices yelling in anger. His father had been home for less than ten minutes and once again they were fighting. Not knowing or caring about this latest argument, Noah ran across the room and turned the radio on full blast before collapsing on the bed. Letting the music wash over him, he covered his head with his pillow.
Noah had turned sixteen two weeks earlier to little fanfare. Where others had huge parties celebrating the first real milestone to adulthood, he had spent the day alone in his room. It wasn't the fact his parents had forgotten his birthday, that happened almost every year. And it wasn't the fact he hadn't made the trip to the Department of Motor Vehicles to get his driver's license. He had long given up on the hope of ever having his own car to drive. Nor was it the fact that he had received no gifts yet again. Or that anyone he knew wished him a happy birthday. What really made him crazy, screaming at the top of his lungs in the middle of nowhere crazy, was the fact that he truly did not care one way or another. That he had somehow sunk so low that nothing really mattered anymore.
The one gift he had received on his birthday was a straight razor. The kind old men and sophisticated gentlemen used in the movies. It was surgical steel with an ivory handle, bright and sharp enough to cut silk. The clerk who had sold it to him had assumed it was for his father and rambled on how lucky his father was to have a son that loved him so much. The irony struck him funny at the time and he had admonished to the clerk that the only way his father would ever see it would be to pry it from his dead hands. Of course he had made sure he had already purchased the item before declaring his suicidal intentions. Not that the clerk believed him or even if he did, the clerk would not get involved in something that was clearly none of his business. One of the greatest perks to living in America, people just didn't care about others anymore.
Suddenly, a banging on the door interrupted his musing. His door opened and his father stood there red-faced and with a sneer, demanding, "Turn that fucking music off."
As the door slammed shut, he threw his pillow across the room. Giving the closed door the finger, he turned the radio down low enough where no one could hear it. Grateful the fighting was done for the night, he stood up and walked over to his collection of CD's. Choosing one of his favorites, he popped it inside and headed for his computer.
Slowly bobbing his head to the chaotic sounds of The Cure, he reached inside his book bag and pulled out his digital camera that he stole from Best Buy during his summer employment, he downloaded the pictures he had taken that day at school. Once downloaded, he opened the folder and quickly scanned through them.
Several were of his teachers, candid snapshots of them picking their nose or scratching their bottoms. Others were of boys he thought were cute, boys walking, boys laughing, boys sitting outside in the quad. A few were of his tormentors, members of the football team as they swaggered down the hall pushing and shoving all those that were dumb enough to stand in their way. But the majority of pictures were of one boy in particular.
In all his sixteen years, he had never seen anyone that captivated his imagination as strongly as Ryan had. Even before the dyed hair and makeup, he had found himself staring at the youth in an almost pathetic fashion. Now that he had changed, the image assaulted him, wrapping him up tightly till all thought was focused on the gothic boy that dared to be different. The star football player that walked away from popularity without a backward glance. For all purposes, outing himself to the entire school by his silence in the face of acquisitions. Whatever he had felt about Ryan before this year was lifeless compared to the feelings he now harbored.
Staring at the pictures, one in particular stood out and made his heart skip a beat. Ryan was sitting in the quad, a cigarette dangling from his mouth. Squatting in the shadows, Ryan looked like a bored rock star as he stared at his fellow students. From the way his brow was furrowed and the intense look in his eyes, Noah could tell that Ryan was troubled about something. His shirt was pulled tightly across his upper body as he squat there with his arms folded, the wind tossing his hair gently. Wishing he could read the boy's mind through the picture, he hit the print button. The rest of the pictures were Ryan walking through the halls, sitting alone during lunch, and the last one was of Ryan and Brett sitting on the bench in front of the gym.
He remembered feeling anger as he looked at the angelic face that was marred by bruising, the eye swollen. His lips, luscious and ripe, were bleeding. At the time he wanted to run over and ask who had done that to his angel, to pay retribution on the fool that dared hit him. But his fear won out and instead he took the picture.
From the picture, he could tell by the two boy's body language that they were still friends. Despite being on opposite sides of popularity. They sat easily next to one another, their knees touching ever so slightly. They were staring at one another, their gaze purposeful and intent but without malice. And when Ryan walked away, Brett stared at him till he disappeared around the corner. Something about the two boys bothered him but no matter how he wrapped his mind around it, the answer alluded him. But that was a puzzle for another day.
He grabbed the now printed picture and walked over to his bed. Lying down, he held the picture up and stared at it. Those lips, as yet untouched, blue eyes that he felt could hold his attention forever, that body he wished would hold him, comfort him.
Looking over at the computer, he remembered the e-mail he had sent him. Blushing slightly at his forwardness, he wondered what Ryan thought as he read it. Did it excite him knowing that he was loved? Did it freak him out? Did he read it over and over again wondering who this boy Noah was? Did he think about it as he pleasured himself in his bed? Wishing Noah was there to complete the deed?
Turning his head, he caught his reflection in the mirror. Frowning, he looked at his pathetic excuse for a body. Straight brown hair, lifeless as he felt, that hung in his eyes no matter how he tried to comb it. Dull brown eyes, the color of feces that stood out against his pale complexion giving him a corpse like look. Short, barely five and a half feet tall with skinny arms and legs. His skin looked like it was stretched over his frame and shown every bone in his body. He was ugly, pure and simple.
The sight of his body caused him to growl out in anger and he crumbled up the picture of his angel. He had no right to lust after something so beautiful when he was so disgusting. Reaching over to his nightstand, he grabbed the ivory handled razor and slashed his arm. Punishing himself for ever thinking someone like Ryan would ever be interested in something like him. Kicking off his pants, he cut his skinny leg and smiled sadistically as the blood trickled down his leg to soak into the bed sheet.
As the pain dulled to an ache, he tested the edge of the razor with one finger, marveling again at its sharpness. Tracing the blade across one wrist, he knew it would only take a quick slash, one cut and his life would be over. Absently singing along with the CD, he moved his hand and put the cold razor against his throat. Smiling wickedly, he slowly pressed harder into his pale skin. His face, contorted into a mask of pain, his green eyes narrowed in concentration as he lay back on the bed. Laying the blade flat against his throat, he mimicked the motion of slashing his own throat. Reaching inside his boxers, he began to slowly stroke himself as he thought about taking his life. As he began to stroke faster, he turned the blade and pressed it hard against the soft tissue of his neck. The faster he moved, the harder he pressed. Within moments, he grunted as a powerful orgasm ripped through his body.
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Brett Fahey stared at the ceiling in the faint light of the television, the soft light giving his blonde hair a bluish tint. Glancing at the clock beside the bed, he stifled a yawn. 9:30. Looking down at the girl wrapped around him, he frowned as he watched her sleep peacefully. Her head was nestled on his chest, her arms and legs holding him tightly. Her red curls were damp despite the chill in the air from the air conditioner. As he studied her naked form, he saw her white perky breasts, long legs and flat stomach, the perfect cheerleader's body. Her normally perfectly made up face was smeared from their rough coupling. Even covered in sweat and makeup, she was beautiful.
He had been dating Britney Murphy for two weeks, hooking up with her at a back to school party Lee had at his house. As girlfriends go, she was high maintenance but worth some of the aggravation she caused. She was a real freak, a sexual adventurer that was willing to try anything, no matter how freaky or perverted. The sex between them was nothing short of epic, each time different and intense.
But something was missing, at least for Bret anyway. Take away his lust and youthful hormones, she had nothing to offer him. Shallow, whiney spoiled and consumed by the quest for popularity, she was nothing more than an empty package, beautiful wrapping on the outside but empty and dark on the inside.
Carefully untangling himself from her clutches, he grabbed his clothes from the floor and softly left her bedroom. Pausing only long enough to dress in the hallway, he made his way downstairs and out the front door.
Climbing inside his green Jeep Wrangler, he started the engine and caught his reflection in the mirror. A haggard face stared back at him, dark circles lining his blue eyes, his brow furrowed. It had been one of the longest days of his life.
By the time he drove home and hauled his weary body inside, it was just after ten PM. To his surprise, his father was sitting in the den, his head buried in a book, a glass of beer sitting next to him. Looking up as Brett entered the room, his father, Jeff, smiled and called out, "Have a good time with Britney?"
"It was okay." Brett answered noncommittally. Collapsing on the couch, he sighed loudly.
"First day of school was always the toughest for me." His father stated with a grin, grabbing his glass. "Trying to get back in the swing of things."
"You ain't kidding." Brett said with a laugh. "This getting up at six am sucks."
"The price we pay for a mediocre education." Came the reply. Putting his book down, his father asked, "How did practice go? Did you forget how to play over the summer?"
"Like that would happen." Brett stated empathetically. "Especially not after we went over the playbook damn near every day since Prom."
His father got a wistful look on his face, a look that said he missed playing football. "Well, have to keep you in tiptop shape. This is the year scouts start looking at you. Between you and Ryan, the championship is as good as won."
I wonder what you would say if I told you about Ryan's change. How he quit the team. How he quit me. "Coach says pretty much the same thing. Either way, I can't wait for our first game." Brett offered with a small smile.
"After last year's pounding, it will be good to see Bishop McDevit lose to the Hershey Bears." His father said with a wide grin. Then adding, "How is Ryan anyway? He was gone for the summer right?"
Standing up, Brett answered carefully, "He's doing good. Had a blast in Orlando and is anxious for the upcoming season."
"Good. I always liked him. He's a good friend."
"Yeah, he is." Brett answered quietly. Too bad I'm not a good friend in return. "I have an early day tomorrow. I think I'm going to hit the sack."
"Are you going running in the morning or do I make you some pancakes?" His father asked, picking up his book.
Tapping his stomach, he said, "Skip the pancakes, I need to stay in shape."
"Good night son." His father said with a smile. "I love you."
"I love you too." Brett returned as he headed up the stairs.
Sighing loudly, he shut his door and switched on the light. Noticing his answering machine blinking, he walked over and hit the button.
"I got cold and woke up and you weren't there. That was very bad slipping away without saying goodbye. Naughty naughty Brett. See you in the morning."
Erasing the message, he stripped off his clothes and placed them in the hamper. Grabbing a towel, he headed for the bathroom across the hall. After adjusting the water temperature, he took off his boxers and stepped inside. Washing away the smell of sweat and sex, he thought about the lie he told his father. Forgive me.
When did his life get so complicated? Was it just this morning when everything was right? How fast life could turn upside down. He had left the house on top of the world and had returned home somewhere between hell and the pit of hell. Fuck it.
Stepping out of the shower, he dried himself and then wrapped the towel around his waist and returned to his room. Turning off the light, he crawled between the sheets and emptied his mind. If he was going to make it through this school year, he would need all the rest he could get.
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Shutting off the engine, Lee and Nelson looked at each other before exiting the car. Making sure no noise was made as they shut the doors; they looked around nervously before sneaking into the shadows of the school. Making their way quickly to the back door of the gym, Nelson took a flashlight from his pocket and shined it on the doorknob. Lee took a key from his pocket and stuck it in the lock. Twisting the key, he grinned triumphantly as the door opened silently. Digging his own flashlight out of his pocket, he gestured with his head and the two headed across the basketball court. Walking into the locker room, they stopped in front of Ryan's locker. Each taking a can of spray paint from their jackets, they began. Five minutes later, they were back inside Lee's Jetta safely on their way to Lee's house. In the morning they would pretend to be as surprised as everyone else and sit back and watch the fun. Silently laughing at their own cleverness.
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Half way between Hershey and Harrisburg on Route 39 was a long forgotten off ramp. At one time, intended to join Route 39 with a new housing development, Exit 15 extended for a quarter mile before dead ending over the Spiny Brook River. Exit 15 or Reed's Folly as the kids dubbed it, was a favorite spot for horny teenagers to go. Turning off the engine, couples would fog up the windows and let their hormones run wild.
The Spiny Brook River lazily cut through the farmland fifty feet below, while the lights of Hershey could be seen glowing in the distance. More than one virgin gave it up while gazing at those lights.
When the moon was full, the valley below lit up as bright as day and one could see small herds of deer running freely through the lush farmland. Jumping and frolicking playfully as they lived oblivious to the madness of the humans all around them.
On this night, a single car was parked on the very edge of the road, it's windows steamy and its body slightly rocking as two youths inside climaxed. They had been driving out there for two years, living out their love in the darkness far away from prying eyes that wouldn't understand their love. One blonde, fairly tall and muscular while the other, a short brunet with the body of a wrestler. The blonde, Conner Winters, was eighteen, a senior at Hershey High with hopes of attending Penn State on a full academic scholarship. The other, Tyler Cummings, another senior at Hershey High, had his sights set on Dickinson's College to study law. They had been dating for over two years in secret, neither willing to risk coming out while still in school.
As Conner collapsed against Tyler's sweaty chest, he briefly kissed the brunet saying, "I love you."
"I love you more." Tyler whispered, tightening his legs around the blonde's waist, pulling him deeper inside. "I wish we could stay this way forever."
Slightly moving his pelvis, Conner grinned, "Can you imagine us walking into class like this?"
"Mr. Thompson would shit himself." Tyler said through laughter. Thinking about the uptight principle that ruled Hershey High with an iron fist.
Ignoring his outburst, Conner continued, slowly moving in and out of his lover, "This would definitely give a new definition to the term relaxed learning environment. I'm so relaxed right now I could go to sleep."
Rubbing the blonde's smooth back, Tyler sighed, "Definitely. I could get used to this."
Grinning, Conner explained, "Making love to you in the back seat of my car isn't necessarily something I want to get use to."
"I'm comfortable." Tyler said with a grin, stretching his short legs out, his feet resting lightly on the window frame."
"That's cause you're four feet tall." Conner stated as he pulled out and grabbed Tyler's legs roughly. Bending the small boy in half, he sat on the seat. Letting go, he pulled the legs close to his body but not before giving him a playful smack on his cheeks.
"Ouch." Tyler said, making a face. "Leave my ass alone."
"Gladly." Conner fired back. "I'm getting sick of it anyway."
"You love my ass." Tyler admonished with a grin.
"I love the whole package."
"You love my package?" Tyler asked, teasing his boyfriend. "You don't think it's too small?"
"For me." Conner said with a grin, leaning over and kissing his boyfriend hard on the lips. "It's perfect. Just like you."
Grabbing two fistfuls of blonde hair, Tyler growled in the back of his throat and returned the kiss passionately. After a few minutes, he broke the kiss and whispered, "You always know the right thing to say to me."
Leaning back in the seat, Conner murmured, "It's easy. I just speak the truth."
For a while they were silent, content just to be next to one another. Without realizing, they had clasp hands, intertwining their fingers together. After a few minutes, Tyler asked, "What do you think about Ryan and everyone saying he's gay?"
Conner started rubbing the brunet's thigh absently as he replied, "I don't know."
"I was thinking." Tyler said, rubbing his nose with the palm of his hand.
"I wondered why I was smelling smoke."
"Funny." Tyler said, squeezing the boy's hand briefly.
"What were you thinking?" Conner asked, staring into the other's eyes.
"If it's true. And he's really gay. Then maybe we should try and talk to him. Help him."
For a moment, Conner's heart started beating faster and a wave of panic washed over him. "What do you mean by talking to him?"
"Talk to him, hang out with him. See if our gaydar pings." Tyler said, throwing out ideas as fast as they entered his head.
"Because. I felt bad. When I heard everything they were saying about him, I just thought that maybe he might need a friend or two." Tyler said with a wistful look on his face.
"I don't know if I want anyone knowing about us yet." Conner answered slowly, choosing his words carefully. "Especially someone like him."
"What do you mean?"
"You've never talked to Ryan have you?" Conner asked, pausing long enough for Tyler to shake his head. "I have."
"I met Ryan at the end of last year, Sarah's party I think." Conner explained softly. "This was before the metal in his face and crazy hair but I got the impression Ryan is a bit self-centered, egotistical you might say. It wasn't anything he said in particular, just a feeling I got. For being a sophomore, he walked through the house like he owned it. Juniors and seniors alike called out to him, everyone knew him. He just had this air about him, like he was better than everyone else."
"You know how jocks are." Tyler said dissmissively, waving his hand. "Half the time they pretend to be someone they're not and the other half pretending to be someone everyone expects them to be."
"I don't know. He was dating the prettiest girl in school but barely spoke to her. Most of the time he spent floating through the crowd smiling as they kissed his ass. Like he lived for it." Conner said with a frown lining his face.
"Maybe he was doing the same thing we're doing." Tyler countered.
"At school or even around our parents, we pretend to be something we're not." Tyler pointed out. "We act just like everyone else. We laugh at the gay jokes, we pretend to be interested in girls. Aren't we pretending to be straight?"
"We're not like him." Conner protested.
"For one. If he is gay. Then not only did he come out of the closet, he kind of kicked the door down and came out waving the rainbow flag." Conner argued. "And for another, if he's gay, he's ready for the whole world to know it. I don't know about you, but I'm not ready for that just yet. Just by talking to him, two seniors, hell everyone would figure it out pretty fast."
"Because we're talking to him?"
"Maybe. I don't want to take that chance." Conner stated firmly.
"It was just a thought." Tyler said with a sigh. Reaching for his clothes, he began dressing. Conner followed suit and in a few minutes, they were dressed and leaning against the railing, staring at the river below them.
An approaching car caused them to spin around quickly. As the car drove slowly down the road, they glanced at one another, relief spreading quickly across their faces. If that car had been five minutes earlier, they would have been caught naked in the backseat. A situation they were not prepared to face just yet.
"It's probably someone else looking to do what we just did." Conner stated casually, crossing his arms across his chest.
"Ten minutes sooner and they would have seen something to put them in the mood." Tyler fired back, giggling softly.
At that moment, red and blue lights started flashing and both boys cursing silently. As the police car stopped, the searchlight came to life blinding them. Shielding their eyes, they waited.
"What are you kids doing out here?" A deep voice called out from beyond the light.
"Nothing." Conner answered respectfully. "Just watching the lights."
A shape appeared in front of the light, giving them the view of a large man, his hand resting lightly on the butt of his sidearm. "Is that you Conner Winters?"
Finally recognizing the man, he called out, "Yes sir, Officer Peabody."
They could see the man visibly relax, his hand sliding off his sidearm. Finally stepping into the light, they saw a barrel chested man with fiery red hair, piercing green eyes and a wide toothy grin. "I didn't recognize you at first. Hi Tyler."
"Hi Officer Peabody." Tyler called.
Officer Peabody was a member of the State Troopers, a well liked spokesperson that every kid at Hershey High knew on sight. He spent many hours talking to the students about the dangers of drugs and underage drinking that ran rampant through the school. He had been featured several times on the local news for his outstanding performance in the line of duty. The students knew him to be a fair easygoing officer. Someone that could be trusted and depended on to keep a secret within the boundaries of the law.
Walking up to the railing, he leaned against it and peered at the lights. "I often come here during the late shift and do the same thing. I found it to be quite relaxing."
Falling in beside him, the two boys followed his gaze. Turning around, he pulled out a pack of small cigars and put one in his mouth. Lighting up the vanilla cigar, he smiled contently before saying, "I don't have to remind you boys that it's past curfew."
Conner replied, "We're both eighteen now."
"Really?" Came the reply. "How time flies. I remember you two when you were no more than this tall and still had pimples." Glancing sideways at Tyler, he added, "Though some of you are still this tall."
Tyler pouted as the other two laughed. Saying, "I remember you too. Back when you could see your toes."
Rubbing his small potbelly, Officer Peabody clapped the boy on the back saying with a laugh, "Are you two ready for the last year of hell?"
"You know it." Conner said with a wide grin.
"Figured out where you're going to college?"
"I'm going to Penn State."
"Good for you." He said, taking a deep drag off the sweet smelling cigar. "Always makes me happy to see two bright boys heading in the right direction."
"As opposed to the wrong direction." Tyler said with a grin. "Remember, I'm going for a law degree."
Looking at the boy, weighing him, Officer Peabody said with a sigh, "Knowing you, you'd probably get some cushy job as a defender. In a few years I'll probably be up against you."
"Know your role." Tyler said with a chuckle.
Glancing at his watch, Conner stated, "Tyler, it's getting late. Time for us to head back."
Officer Peabody flicked his half-smoked cigar over the railing and said, "Good to see you boys. Have a good year."
"Thanks, you too." Tyler called out as he opened the car door.
Conner waved and started the engine. Looking over at Tyler, he said as he pulled away, "That would have really sucked if he caught us."
"You telling me." Tyler said with a grin. "I almost shit myself when I realized it was him."
"Never would have happened." Conner said with a straight face.
"Cause I packed you good and tight."
To Be Continued
Copyright©2004 Burning Angel