The day began for Caleb as any other day of what he considered his boring existence. Well it began that way; fortunately for him it didn't stay that way.
'Why did I agree to this?' Caleb thinks as he walks through the store. 'The gay guy has taste so he has to plan the party. Bullshit, I hate this stuff; maybe I should send back my membership card. Yes I like to shop but for clothes and nothing else.'
"May I help you sir."
Well that caught me by surprise more like scared the shit out of me. The look on his face was priceless. Little bit of terror mixed with shock.
"I'm sorry you startled me" I replied
"That's quite all right my fault." he replied.
I was having a hard time suppressing my laughter. See you have to understand I really don't take to being snuck up on, from behind. I tend to react with flying fists. God I remember the first time Zander snuck up on me, he thought he was being playful, that was until I nearly deviated his windpipe with my elbow. A Quick evaluation showed that I hadn't actually connected but I definitely scared him none the less.
" Actually I could use some direction I need supplies for a moonlight picnic. You know basket and all that jazz." I said.
"Certainly Sir, this way, I can help you get what you need"
I swear there was a little disappointment in his voice. Obviously assuming I was straight, oh well all the better. I was not exactly in the mood for flirting this afternoon, too much to do, and the majority of that is something that I definitely did not want to do. Fuck the majority of it was something I didn't want to do. I made a promise to the others though. Well better get this over with. Besides have to save the flirting up for later in the week if things go as we all planned.
Nick looked up from the TV where he was playing Mortal Kombat with Brian.
"Someone's in deep shit, Kevin sounds pissed Nick" Brian replied
"Yeah whatever, I'm not worried, your cousin has to learn to lighten...."
Nick didn't get to finish as the door to the hotel room burst open. However instead of feeling fearful Nick burst out laughing, tears were starting to form in his eyes as he looked at the image before him. It didn't help matters any that he could hear Brian snickering under his breath.
There in the doorway stood Kevin in only a towel with Howie hanging from his shoulders trying to hold him back, obviously Howie was doing a poor job at it. His hands were barely around Kevin's shoulders and his feet appeared to be dragging behind him. As funny as that image was, the truly hilarious part was the fact that Kevin's once black hair was now bright neon green.
"Hey Kev love the hair, but why did you choose that color" To Nick's credit he was in mid flight as he was saying this or he would not have been able to put enough distance between himself and Kevin.
"I am truly going to kill you kid, and no-one's going to stop me this time."
Kevin's face was twisted and his eyes showed nothing but rage. Nick was beginning to think that perhaps he had gone too far; after all he was only supposed to keep Kevin distracted while Caleb left. As he looked around he saw he was getting no help from the other two in the room. Howie was busy having no luck holding Kevin back. As for Brian, well he was rolling around the floor in utter hysterics trying to keep from peeing himself
"What are you laughing at you idiot, your supposed to be on my side, your family after all." Kevin roared at his cousin.
" I.... Can'...help. It....that color..." That was all Brian could get out before another wave of laughter overcame him.
Nick was taking advantage of this to get out the door. It probably would have worked if I had not been trying to get into the same room. As I opened the door Nick's true style and grace came through as he fell before my feet face forward. The loud thump brought the attention of the room back on him.
" Nicky I told you, your too young, please stop throwing your self at my feet..." I was going to continue when Kevin's voice caught my attention.
" Nick! Don't move one more step until I get a chance to break your legs."
The command in his voice caught me off guard I mean it was not unusual to see Kevin and Nick fighting almost like a father and son, but the venom in his voice was truly startling. It was then that I looked up. I immediately took to a fit of laughter my sides hurt. This did nothing to calm Kevin as he quickly approached the now prone Nick. I decided I had better intervene before the world was deprived of two Boy band members. I quickly and deftly stepped over Nick and placed my self between him and Kevin.
"Caleb get the Hell out of the way, I have to break his legs."
"Kevin calm down, NOW!"
The room went silent, no one ever spoke to Kevin like that, most were too scared, after all He did always look menacing when he didn't smile. I however am his best friend and have been for over 3 years. I had seen the other side of Kevin the big kid that was trapped within. That gave me a better insight into Kevin and I also had the Guilt factor. My mamma said Guilt was the gift that keeps on giving. That was one card I could play with Kevin very well. What most people don't now is that Kevin had kidney problems most of his life, and he really only had one functioning kidney. That was until three years ago when that one failed. That's where I came in. He needed a kidney so I gave him a Kidney. See what a nice guy I am. God, I amaze my self at times.
"I will not calm down! Look what he did to my hair!; I am so tired of his pranks and childish behavior."
Kevin he is a child, after all he is only 15, you need to relax and take it as a joke we can wash the dye out. After all it's only hair. I could tell that this was not working, time to work the guilt.
" Kevin this..." as I faked a sharp intake of breath and I favored my right side. "Caleb what's wrong, are you okay buddy. Come here and sit down and relax, tell me what's wrong."
It worked just like I Knew it would. I was experiencing a little pang of guilt for what I had done to Kevin because I could sense the deep concern in his voice.
" I'm ok Kevin just a little tired. I am ok, don't worry must have done too much of a workout this morning."
"I never should have let you push your self so hard. " Kevin responded. I could see those green eyes beginning to mist over. "Kevin stop you did nothing it was my own fault I am ok. Tell you what, go back to your room and I will help you fix your hair, I began to whisper " your towel is not exactly hiding anything dude."
Kevin stopped and looked down and turned a slight pink as he got up to leave. During my little acting debut Nick had gotten up and moved into the corner of the room. Brian had also regained control of himself and was standing with Howie to my right. Kevin Got up and without any words made his way to the door, obviously calmer then he was when he had entered the room. None of us however, noticed that someone else had joined the room. Zander stood in the doorway surveying the situation, with a blank face. He probably would have gone unnoticed, only he was blocking the doorway and Kevin nearly ran into him in his attempts to leave the room.
"Oh I'm sorry Alex, I should have been watching where I was ...going" Kevin's voice was small and almost shy especially realizing he was basically naked except for that small hotel towel. AJ looked to him and with a slight shy smile replied, " It's ok Kevin, It's my fault" Kevin gave a slight embarrassed smile and quickly left the room.
"Wow, man how do you always do that? Kevin is like putty in your hands" Nick energetically asked as he started to bounce around the room.
"Yes Caleb, how ever do you do that?" came the sneered reply form the doorway. We turned just in time to see AJ's retreating back quickly followed by the door slamming shut.
"Oww!" "What did you guys do that for?" Nick shouted out to the room.
Obviously I had missed the two backhands to the head he received from Howie and Brian. I was too focused on the door and letting thoughts of the past play in my mind 'Oh Zander, whatever happened to us.' Enough of that I knew what I had to do, It was obvious, and I had to stop trying to live in the past.
"Nick please tell me why you decided to dye his hair." I asked to the room in general still focused on the hotel room door.
"Well you guys wanted Kevin distracted so he wouldn't notice Caleb missing. After all the last couple weeks those two" pointing to Caleb and the door indicated Kevin " have been joined at the hip. He would have known something was up when he couldn`t find Caleb. This way he is none the wiser."
I turned to see the very large shit eaten grin on his face. I had to laugh how could you stay mad at him, everything was done in pure friendship and love for the people he knew as family.
Brian began "Those two are getting worse, Kevin is constantly on edge and ..."
"And AJ is a walking mood swing." finished Howie
" If you consider going from bad to bad a mood swing." I added half-heartedly
"Those too need to fuck and get it over with" Nick added to all of our shock "What just cause I'm young doesn't mean I'm stupid."
"Yes it does." the three of us replied smiling. Nicky threw himself at us and causing us all to tumble into a heap on the ground, where a heated wrestling match soon ensued
Several hours later:
"Where the hell are we going Alex?"
"I have no idea Kevin we were supposed to be meeting the rest of the guys at the club. But we seem to be in the country."
Just then the limo pulled to a stop the driver open the limo door.
"Sirs we have arrived"
"Kevin looked out of the limo to see a rustic looking cabin in the background. "Where are we?"
"Sorry sir can't tell you. I can tell you that yourself and Mr. MacLean are wanted in the cabin and that you will receive whatever answers you need in there."
"Come on Kevin, lets just do this and go in. Let's find out what those other morons are up to."
AJ pushed himself out of the limo and made himself to the cabin door. AJ didn't need to turn around to know Kevin was right behind him. He could sense his presence always, ever since the first day they met he had a connection that he could not deny as much as he tried. Which over the last few weeks had taken its toll on himself, sending AJ in to bad mood after bad mood. Causing the guys, including Kevin, to avoid him. AJ wasn't sure if that was a blessing or a curse not to be near the man he longed for, for so many years.
" Well AJ lets go! Come on lets get this over with." Kevin softy spoke behind him.
A little further away on a hill above the cabin three friends sat, with their attention strictly focused on the small rustic cabin.
"Yah Rock they just got here, the limo just left. How are things going back at the hotel, keeping management busy?" .... Yah, ok... Yah I know... Jesus Rock... Sorry! Ok got to go will call you later with an update."
"How many times do I tell you not to swear around Brian?" Howie replied "What did he have to say?"
"I did not swear! and Brian said things were getting nuts. Everyone is looking for us and they are not buying Brian's story. I hope this works because if not, management will never let us out of their sight after this stunt."
"What do you think Caleb?" Nick asked
I really wasn't paying attention to my surroundings. I was too focused on the cabin and wondering what was going on inside. I was hoping that our plan had worked out however; a small part of me was hoping that the plan did not work. How did that saying go, If you love something let it go, if it doesn't come back it was never yours to begin with. Although true as it was it sucked. I much appreciated the other version where you hunt it down and kill it. Just joking I could never hurt Zander. I just don't understand how we arrived in this place although I saw it coming for a long time.
"Caleb! man are you there? answer me."
Leave it to Nick to be the one poking me in the head. I love the kid like a little brother, but there are times I could kick his ass.
"God Caleb stop zoning out . We wanted to know what you were thinking about all this"
"Oh its great I think it's going to work"
"I may be young Caleb but I'm not a moron you are not ok with this, you are still in love with him." I looked at Nick with a little bit of awe. How did Nicky get to be so smart.
"He's right Caleb, why are you doing this to yourself"
"Guy's, Zander has loved Kevin from the beginning even before I entered the picture. We only got together because both of us couldn't be with Kevin."
This statement surprised Howie; "You are in love with Kevin"
"Was in love with him. Kevin is my best friend. He's like a brother, it would be weird now."
"Then what happened dude, why did you change your feelings?" Howie asked.
"Howie, that's a stupid question AJ happened"
Both Howie and I turned to look at Nick. It was like seeing Nick for the first time. He wasn't the young kid we all knew and loved. He had this deep intellectual look to himself, it was all in the eyes. They say the eyes are the windows to the soul and it is so true. Nick's concern and love for me was shining through brightly, and I was truly caught off guard and speechless.
"Tell me it's not true, and I will call you a liar Caleb, I see it in your eyes every-time that you look at AJ. The way you go all quite and distant whenever AJ's name is spoken. It's like you are trying so desperately to remember every detail in fear that it will be gone. So please tell me how you can sit here and set up your ex-boyfriend, who you are so desperately in love with, with your best friend. First thing I want to is how are you going to deal with it if it works and they so get together. Like we all are hoping."
Nick spoke softy and concisely laying it all before me. Confronting me with the issue at hand. The one issue I was trying to avoid and obviously doing a miserable job at it.
"I won't lie to you Nicholas you are right I am not ok with this I am still in love with him. I always will be no matter what happens or who we will be with at the time. I also know that AJ does not feel the same about me, yes he may have loved me or thought he did for a while. It always came back to Kevin and AJ, they are soul mates I can see it and I know you can. Just because I love him is superfluous they belong together and I am just going to have to move on."
They say talking out your problems helps you realize them and then you can begin to work through them. That is what happened to me It finally hit me that it was over between AJ and I, and that I had to move on with my life. But what was my life. I had lost myself in AJ's life for so long I feel I don't know what it is to be only one person. I didn't realize that my eyes had begun to mist over and that I was close to tears. I sat there in silence staring at two of the people that had become my family.
Howie and Nick moved closer and wrapped me in their arms, holding me in the solitude of this warm summer evening. I was barely managing to hold it together, and keep the tears at bay.
Howie whispered in my ear "Caleb you are not superfluous, never believe that about your self."
That was it I couldn't hold back the tears any more. The sobs wracked my body I was giving into the pain. I was completely being supported by two of my best friends. It seemed like hours had passed as we sat there huddled, with only the noise of my sobs breaking the silence. Then they were gone. It's true you can only cry so much. I had nothing left, no tears left to cry anymore. I just felt numb about the whole situation. I pulled myself together and separated from the guys.
" Thank you guys I needed that"
"We are quite the group. Here we are all crying in the middle of nowhere" Nick joked. Both Howie and I laughed, leave it to Nicky to know how to lighten the mood. I reached over to grab Nicky's head and gave him a kiss on the forehead. Nick's response was so him.
"Get off me you fruitcake, I don't swing your way remember" Nick roared with laughter.
" Why the hell would I want some skinny assed kid when I could have sexy sweet D"
"You leave sexy sweat D out of this, I can find my own dates."
"Yeah and that's why your sitting out here with us huh" both Nick and I said at the same time.
"Oh my god, you two are spending too much time together and that is scary." Howie replied with laughter.
We spent the next little while in silence watching the cabin in the distance. Finally the lights in the cabin windows went out leaving the cabin darkened, light only by the glow of the moon. No one moved from inside the cabin. " I guess everything worked out" Nick said to no one in particular.
"Yeah I guess so Nicky, things are definitely going to change now."
"So what are you going to do now Caleb?" Howie question was spoken more from concern then curiosity.
"I guess I move on. Actually I think on some level I knew it was going to work it's probably why I accepted a date for Thursday"
"Date!" Both Howie and Nick shouted. Before they pounced on me and started to tickle me "Tell us about this, no keeping secrets" Nick teased as his fingers moved quickly over my body. "Yah tell us or we are never stopping" Howie added
"Oooooo....kay huff.....huff .. unclllllllllllle, I give...I give" I gasped in-between bouts of laughter. The guys released me and gave me some room to catch me breath.
"Com on Caleb give it up, man" Nick probed
"Okay I met someone the other day while you guys were at rehearsal"
"Caleb come on." Howie was just as bad as Nick at times " Tell us more and stop being so secretive."
"Okay, Okay. I can't tell you who it is, he has to be discrete, but he is cute and sweet and adorable and smart and cute" the corners of my mouth were threatening to turn up in a smile.
"Hah, look at that someone is thinking nasty thoughts."
" I am not thinking nasty thoughts Nick, well not yet." We all burst out laughing
" Ummm guys there is something else I have to tell you. This was going to be hard I wasn't sure how they would take it and I really was trying to chicken out.
" What Caleb?" Howie asked
There is only one way to do it and that was quickly "immovingbacktorlandoandleavingthetour" Both sat there stunned I thought maybe I was to fast " I said..." but Howie cut me off
"We heard you Caleb, are you sure this is what you want to do" They caught me off guard.
"What you aren't going to try and change my mind guys"
"Would it work?" Nick questioned.
"Ummm no." was my elequant response
"Look Caleb we know why you need to leave and we may not like it but we understand. Anyway Kevin is going to hassle you more then we ever could" that sly smile appeared on Nick's face and I knew that no matter what happened we would be ok.
Several hours earlier at the cabin
"AJ, I said are we going in. Hello AJ"
AJ had zoned out it was brought on by Kevin's soft whispering in his ear ' I got to get a grip, how am I going to last with Kevin so near all the time. Every time I see him I want to kiss him, but he doesn't feel that way why would he, I now he's in love with Caleb. Look at the way he is with him. He is like this totally opposite person, he becomes more of a kid then Nick, when Caleb is around. And after today I am sure that he loves him. When Caleb faked being hurt Kevin was right there beside him worrying and protecting him. He would never do that....' Kevin nudged AJ brining him out of his dazed state.
" AJ I said let's go in, where were you just now you seemed so far away"
"It's Caleb isn't it your thinking about him. Why did you and he break up, you were so great together and you loved each other. I know he loves you I can see it in his eyes. And you are obvious upset about it."
" You dolt he loves you not me" AJ mumbled under his breath.
"Nothing Kevin I don't want to talk about Caleb can we just go in and get this over with"
Kevin watched AJ approach the door and thought, about how much he loved everything about AJ. The way he moved and the way he spoke, and just the way to stood in a room. Caleb is so lucky, I could never have AJ. That's ok I guess, if I can't be happy at least AJ and Caleb should be happy. I have to distance myself from AJ and make Caleb see the light and get him back with AJ. A small smile appeared on his face of the thought of making AJ happy even if it was with Caleb. After all Caleb was his best friend, his brother and he couldn't and shouldn't be jealous.
"Kev come on man. " 'God he looks so sexy when he is thinking stop it Alex stop it, don't think about it.'
"Ok AJ lets go on the count of three, One Two Three"
They both stepped into the cabin and stopped mid step. It was truly wondrous. The cabin furniture had been moved to the outside walls and a huge plaid blanket had been laid on the hardwood floor in front of the blazing fireplace. Around the room were candles of all sizes and shapes bathing the room with soft warm light. On the blanket sat a dish of chocolate strawberries and a bottle of champagne with two glasses.
"Wow" was all AJ could say.
"This is amazing! This must be the wrong place" Kevin rationalized
" Obviously someone has planned a romantic evenings and we are interrupting"
"Hush, Kevin I think it's the right place and that this is for us"
"AJ what are you talking ab....." AJ placed his hand over Kevin's mouth and pointed his face in the direction of the banner located just above the fireplace. The Banner read 'Congrats Kev and AJ.'
"Congrats for what AJ, what is this all about?"
" I don't know Kev you know as much as I do here."
' I know Howie had something to do with this, this reeks of his handiwork, I never should have told him about my feelings for Kevin.' Meanwhile Kevin had begun to look around the room he noticed two envelopes with his and AJ's name on it. He picked them up and walked to where AJ was standing in front of the fireplace.
" Here AJ this may help, I found them on the blanket they are addressed to us. Here's yours."
"Well Kev I guess we open them, huh and find out what's going on." AJ was beginning to get nervous, if this was Howie idea what was in the envelope what would Kevin's say.
Kevin was having similar thoughts 'I am so going to kill Brian, I know he did this and what is in these dam envelopes hat did he say to AJ.'
"Well lets get this over with then huh, Kevin"
They began to open the envelopes slowly, both scared of what they were possibly going find. The envelopes contained one piece of paper. Both AJ and Kev reached in slowly each stealing glances at the others while they listened to their hearts beating in their ears. Dreading the possible outcome that lay ahead. Both only were thinking the worse. Well the time had come, both stood with the folded piece of paper from the envelope. They unfolded it and began to read. Both of their heads quickly shot up and they looked at each other with awe. Then they looked back at the paper. They both remained this way for sometime not speaking at all. Finally after what seemed like and eternity AJ let drop his piece of paper and walked forward towards Kevin. He took Kevin's face in his hands. Kevin looked up and peered in to AJ's eyes. 'It must be true' Kevin thought as he peered into AJ's eyes. He started to lean forward as AJ did the same. Slowly their lips met and they began to slowly kiss. The kiss gained in intensity and they embraced harder. They placed all there feeling into this kiss and both desired it to last longer and never stop. Both were becoming lost in each other. They probably would have continued if it was not for that nasty habit they each had of needing to breathe.
"Oh god Alex, I have been in love with you for years, but you were with Caleb and I thought you never could be with me so I kept it to myself. It was just a wish that you would be in love with me."
"Kevin shush. Yes I loved you since the first day I met you, I never truly loved Caleb down deep and that is why we broke up I kept comparing him to you. I was jealous of the time you spent together, you guys were so close I was jealous and wanted it, which lead to most of our problems in the end.
Kevin stood shocked at this revelation. It was only his wildest dreams come true
"AJ, about Caleb, Yes I love him but he and I are like brothers nothing more. I know he feels the same way, nothing could ever happen between us. You are my soul mate the one I want to grow old with.
This time it was Kevin who pulled AJ toward him and kissed him not as passionate as the first kiss but soft and full of love.
"Alex I think we should celebrate with this champagne they offered us" spoken with a sly smile.
"What exactly are we celebrating"
" Oh I don't know, perhaps many of firsts between us I hope." Kevin popped the cork and poured two glasses Alex sat on the picnic blanket before the fire and watched Kevin's movement memorizing each one.
" So who wrote you your note and what did it say" Kevin looked at AJ "umm it said he loves you."
"Mine said the same; Howie was always straight to the point. So who wrote it Brian?"
"Yeah, Brian said the same thing, not very original is he" Kevin laughed ' thank you Caleb I will never forget this and I won't tell him it was you' Kevin thought to himself.
The evening progressed slowly they sat and drank the champagne, talking and holding and sharing their deepest feeling with each other.
" Kevin could we go and get more comfortable" AJ spoke softy and began to blush.
Kevin didn't respond and AJ thought he had rushed things and insulted Kevin. However Kevin got up and began to blow out the candles. When he was finished he walked over to AJ reached out and took his hand and led him into the bedroom.
the end for now anyway
let me know what you think email me @ Rhythm@freeandsingle.com