Chapter 3
Copyright 2005 Julien Gregg
Edited by Bruce

This story is about homosexual teenagers.  If you are offended by this kind of story, then you shouldn't read mine.  If it is not legal for you to read erotic fiction where you live, then you should not read this story.  If you have questions or comments, email me.  You can also visit my webpage.  There is exclusive story there, and you can join my mailing list to be notified when I post to a story.  This story is copyrighted, so please do not duplicate it in whole or in part without permission.

Now, I'd love to tell everyone that Phillip and I got right into hot and sweaty sex, but that would just be a bold-faced lie. I mean, who wouldn't want to be able to say that they had sex with such a gorgeous sixteen-year-old boy? Phillip was everything that his picture suggested. He stood at about five feet, nine inches tall with a perfect gym body. He was muscular, but not so muscular that it was painful to look at him. His muscles bulged just right in all the right places. His skin had a nice tan, and that offset his sun bleached blond hair. His brown eyes had a glint in them that could only come from being a guy who knew he was sexy but wasn't stuck on himself. His blond hair was cut short, but not too short, and it had a natural part in the middle that was just so sexy.

When he spoke, his voice had a pleasant timbre. It wasn't too deep, and it wasn't too high pitched. The sound was definitely male, but it wasn't overly male. It had a happy edge to it, and I got the feeling from listening to him that he was a person that could be happy most of the time. It just fit with the way that he carried himself. His gate was sturdy and confident, showing that he was a guy who had no hang ups about himself, good or bad.

He kept up a pleasant conversation at supper, leaving no one out. He had a way of making you feel like you were the only person in the room when you spoke to him. He was that good at listening. When he replied to anything that you said, his replies were articulate and not too wordy. He wasn't abrupt, but he would never be accused of being long winded, either. There was just a sense of genuine interest when he listened to what you said, and he never tried to make himself appear to know about things he knew nothing about.

When I explained my desire to start a landscaping business and told Him about the lawn jobs I currently had, he seemed interested. He admitted that he knew absolutely nothing about landscaping, but if I needed help with snow and ice, he was the guy to talk to. Living in Maine, I could easily see that about him. He even expressed an interest in helping me when I told him that I could use the help while everyone was at work.

I have to admit that trying to sleep with him just on the other side of the wall from me that night was difficult. I won't lie and say that his looks didn't have an effect on me, cause they did. I just wanted to spend more time getting to know him. I thought that he would make an interesting friend. Yes, I wanted there to be more between us, but I really had just met him. I'd only had one sexual experience, and I wasn't exactly eager to repeat it. I knew nothing about Phillip sexually, and I thought that finding out would be fun.

On Sunday, he didn't go with me and Charlie to work on the lawns that I had to make up from the rainy day. He spent the day with Tom and Shirley while Charlie and I slaved away with mowers and rakes. He was at the house when I got back, though, and he made a comment about how sweaty I was. I thought I saw a certain look in his eyes as he looked me over, but that could have easily been wishful thinking.

"All clean now," he said, smiling at me as I came back down the stairs after my shower. He seemed to be standing in the same spot I'd left him in almost a half hour before.

"I feel better, too," I said, returning the smile.

"So what is there to do in Storyville on a Sunday evening?" he asked as he followed me into the kitchen.

"Well, the mall will close at seven," I said as I started to make myself a sandwich. "Hungry?"

"No, thank you," he said, smiling again. "I ate with Tom and Shirley just a little while before you came home."

"I can't tell you what there is to do around Here, because I don't really know what you like to do," I said.

"I'm happy with just about anything," he said, sitting down across from me at the kitchen table.

"There are four movie theaters here," I said. "Batting cages, a water park, several regular parks, video arcades and all kinds of things are also possibilities."

"I'm not much of a mall rat," he chuckled. "Batting cages are . . . ok, I don't swim much, but a regular park doesn't sound too bad. Want to go and hang out in one?"

"Sure," I said, thinking that any time I spent along with him was time I would be getting to know him. I wanted that more than anything at that moment.

We grabbed a couple of sodas and got into my truck. I had to apologize for the empty Rally's wrappers and soda cups before putting them into a plastic bag and running them to the trash cans. After that, he flipped on the radio and dialed in a station that he seemed to like, and we were on our way to the park.

"So, if I can ask, as we drove down the street, why are you living with Tommy, and your brother is staying across the street with your parents? I thought Charlie was your older brother?"

"He is," I said uncomfortably. "He's in town for the summer, like you. He'll go back to Carbondale and school in August."

"What about you?" He asked, and I knew what he was getting at.

"My parents and I had a falling out," I said. "Now I live with Tommy."

"Was it because you're gay?" He asked.

"Yeah," I said, glancing at him.

"Look," he said. "I'm sorry about that. I'm kind of a nosey person sometimes."

"No problem," I replied. "It's just something strange and very bad happened to make my father throw me out of the house."

"Must have hurt," he said more to himself than to me.

"Yeah," I agreed, and we were silent for a while after that.

When we got to the park, there weren't many people there. I thought it was odd that there were so few people out in the sunlight on a Sunday, but it just meant that Phillip and I would have more time to talk. We walked over to a picnic table in front of the shelter houses to sit and talk about anything that came to our minds.

"So you graduated from high school," he said after we'd sat down.

"Yeah," I said, smiling at him. "Finally."

"I can't wait to graduate," he said. "Then maybe I can move out of my parents' house and get them off my back."

His expression turned dark, and we were silent for a few minutes. I didn't know if I should ask about what was bothering him or not. It wasn't exactly like I was being forthcoming about what had happened between me and my parents. I just didn't know if I was ready to tell him about all of that, yet.

"Sorry about that," he said, smiling sheepishly at me after we'd been silent for a few minutes.

"That's all right," I replied. "Things aren't exactly great in my family, either."

"Well, I'm sure that your parents are nice people," he said. "Mine are, too. Its just that they caught me doing something that they really didn't approve of."

"You don't have to tell me about that," I said.

"Thanks," he said. "I'm not really sure if I'm ready to talk about it with anyone right now."

"No rush," I said. "Tell me about Maine."

"It's a great place," he said, smiling. "I've lived there my entire life, and I have a lot of friends at home. You'd like it there."

"Isn't it cold?" I asked.

"Not all of the time," he chuckled. "We do have seasons in Maine."

"I didn't mean it like that," I laughed. "Its just that every time I see anything about Maine on television, all I ever see is snow."

"Well, we have beaches and grass, too," he said. "Maybe some day you can come visit and see for yourself."

"I might like that," I replied.

"So tell me why it is that someone as good looking as you doesn't have a boyfriend," he said, looking at me with a mischievous glint in his eyes.

"Well, I guess that would be because I haven't found anyone that I'd want to have as a boyfriend. I'm not really all that experienced with this sort of thing."

"You said that you'd had sex, though, right?" He asked.

"Once," I replied.

"But you do know what you like, though?" He said.

"I know that I liked having my dick sucked," I said amazed that I could say that to him without blushing.

"Well, every guy likes that," he chuckled. "Did you like anything else about the experience?"

"I didn't like most of it," I admitted. "When it was happening, I was too stunned to think about it, really. Then I had plenty of time to think, and I now know that I didn't like being fucked. As it turned out, I got fucked twice in the process."

"Oh really," he said with wide eyes.

"Oh yeah," I replied, and I found myself telling him everything, from how long Keith and I had been friends, to telling Keith I was gay. I told him about Keith being really cool about it and swearing that it made no difference to him. Then I told him about the day that I had sex with Keith, or rather the day that Keith had sex with me. He was very interested in what happened afterward, and he seemed to be upset when I told him what Keith did. He seemed even more upset over my parents' reaction to what Keith had said.

"That really sucks!" He hissed when I was finished telling him all of it.

"That Keith guy sounds like a world class prick."

"Well, up until two weeks before graduation, I would have argued with you over that statement," I said. "Now I'll just agree and call it a day."

"You said that at Wendy's party no one was rude to you, though, right?" He asked.

"Right," I responded. "I heard that no one really believed what Keith had told them, and they were all whispering about when Keith and I would get into a big fight over it."

"Well, it sounds like that's exactly what you should have done," said Phillip. "I'd have kicked his lying Ass."

"Yeah, well, that wouldn't have been worth it," I said. "It wouldn't have made my parents accept my sexuality. It might have erased the thought that I'm some sort of sexual deviant, but I doubt it with the way my father feels about homosexuals."

"I was lucky in that department," he admitted. "My parents weren't exactly thrilled that I'm gay, but they don't hate me for it. They really don't care either way. My dad said that the only thing that bothered him about it is the prejudice in the world toward gay people. My mom didn't even say that much. She just cried a little and hugged me."

"You were lucky," I said. Feeling slightly jealous. "My parents would have hated me for it even if Keith hadn't said what he said."

"Well, my parents aren't exactly happy with me right now," he said. "I didn't think I'd ever see the light of day when they found out what I was doing."

"You don't have to tell me about that, Phillip," I said.

"No, that's ok," he said. "It really isn't Earth shattering. I was having an affair with my English teacher, and my dad caught us having sex."

"Wow," I said. That wasn't even the last thing I was thinking had happened.

"Yeah, well, I'm out of the closet now to everyone in Portland," he said. "Mike, my teacher, got fired, and I had to really beg my parents not to press charges on him. That would have only made things worse. As it was, I was like a freak in school after everyone found out, and they found out really fast."

"Ouch," I said. "I'm sorry to hear that."

"Well it won't be so bad when school starts again," he said. "I'm going to a private school next year."

"Your idea?" I asked.

"My mother's insistence," he chuckled. "I'm happy about it, though."

We talked more about Portland and how much he loved it as the sun set. His eyes sparkled when he talked about his home-town, and I was getting more and more attracted to him. I loved the way his eyes smiled when his mouth did. It was refreshing to find someone who genuinely smiled again. He was fast becoming one of the most gorgeous people I'd ever seen.

We decided to go and grab something to eat when both of our stomachs started to growl, and we had an even more pleasant conversation while we sat in Denny's, eating steaks. He told me about his younger and older brothers, Jason and Carl. It seemed the three of them loved to play practical jokes on each other much to the irritation of their parents.

I could see by the way he talked about them that he was close to his brothers. He told me that neither of them really cared about his sexuality, so that wasn't an issue. He was a year younger than his older brother, Jason, and a year older than his younger brother, Carl. The three were known in their family as The Three Musketeers.

I told him about how things had always been between me and Charlie growing up. Charlie had always been the protective big brother, and I told him about how hurt I'd been when he seemed to have brushed me off. That led to a discussion of the military and what we both thought of the war. We had similar opinions of it, and neither of them were very good. We just seemed to have more and more in common.

When we finally got home, it was almost nine o'clock. Vince and Tommy were sitting in the living room when we walked in. Tommy asked how our day had gone, and we both assured him that we'd had a good time. He told us Andy was on a date with Gage, and Steve was doing something with Nick and Jeremy.

I had trouble getting to sleep that night, because I couldn't stop thinking about Phillip. It was a crush, and I knew that, but it was different than any other crush I'd developed before. Unlike the way I'd thought of Keith, I wanted to get to know Phillip in ways that Keith and I never really took the time with. Sure, I knew all of Keith's favorite things and all of what he didn't like. I knew secrets and fears as well as fantasies and dreams, but I wanted to know Phillip on an even deeper level. I wasn't even sure how to explain that to myself, so I can't explain it here.

The next morning, Tom came to get Phillip and Andy for some kind of family thing as Charlie and I headed off to the first lawn of the day. Charlie asked me all sorts of questions about Phillip while we worked that day, and during our lunch break, he demanded every detail of the time we spent together the night before.

"I know you- guys went somewhere together," he said. "I called to talk to you three different times, and each time, Vince told me that you and Phillip were both still gone."

"We went to the park for a while," I said. "Then we went to Denny's to get something to eat. We just talked, Charlie, nothing special."

"Nothing special, huh?" He said, smiling at me. "Then why does your whole face light up when you talk about him?"

"I like him," I admitted. "But it isn't like we're going to have anything significant. He's only going to be here for the summer. He leaves for Maine in August."

"That's almost two months away, D." He said.

"Yeah, but what if I really start to like him in those two months?" I asked. "How am I going to feel when he leaves?"

Yet, Phillip and I continued to get to know each other over the next few days. We went out to eat just about every night, and we even saw two movies that I couldn't recite the details of under gun-point. He had an easy way about him that made it easy to get to know him, and I found myself liking him more and more. It was starting to worry me. I was worried that I was going to fall for him and get my heart broken when he had to go back to Maine.

He went with me and Charlie on Friday to mow the lawns, helping us out. He raked up all of the grass clippings that I left behind after mowing with the old mower, and he helped pick up all of the limbs of the hedges that we trimmed. Charlie gave us space, and Phillip stayed close to me the entire day. It was nice having him with us that day, but once his shirt came off, I found myself drooling over his sexy upper body over and over again. Charlie noticed the predicament that I was in and chuckled at me every time he caught me.

When we stopped for lunch, I got an even bigger surprise. While Charlie and I wolfed-down burgers and fries, Phillip chose a side salad with no dressing. He explained that he rarely ever ate fast food, and when he did it was always a salad. For a drink he chose white milk and just smiled when I asked about that, too. He told us that fast food was one of the worst things that you could put in your body, and he had worked too hard to get his body to where it was.

As we pulled into the driveway, I noticed workmen coming and going from the back yard. Phillip and I shot each other a curious glance, but neither of us knew what was going on. We went into the house to see if anyone was home. Tommy's car was out front, but that didn't mean that he was home. He sometimes rode with Steve. He was standing in the dining room talking to one of the workmen when Phillip and I got inside.

"Hey guys," he said, flashing us a smile.

"Hey, Tommy," I said. "What's going on?"

"Oh, I'm having a pool put in," he said. "We're tired of having to drive all the way over to Wendy's for a dip."

"Cool," said Phillip. "Too bad it isn't already full. We could just dive in."

"It won't even be completed until Sunday," he said. "Then we have to wait for two days before we fill it."

"So, we should have the pool ready for use by Wednesday, then?" Asked Phillip.

"Should," agreed Tommy.

"Sweet," enthused Phillip.

I let him take the first shower while I sat in the dining room with Tommy. He explained everything about the pool to me, and I was really excited. I'd taken the pool at home for granted, and now that I didn't have it, I missed it. Tommy seemed to be excited about the pool too. He told me that he and Steve had been discussing it with Tom and Shirley for a few weeks.

"You had to get their permission?" I asked.

"Not to put the pool in," he said. "I had to have Tom's signature to get the money to pay for it. Any amount of money that large requires a bit of dialogue."

"You know, I should really be helping out around here more," I said seriously. I'd been thinking about that a lot, and I wanted to talk about it with him.

"What do you mean?" He asked. "You cook on Thursdays, and you are almost as much of a neat freak as Vince."

"I meant with bills and stuff," I replied. "I'm living here, so I should be paying some sort of rent."

"But I don't need you to pay rent, Dustin," he said. "I moved you in here, because you are my friend. I didn't move you in for money. Don't worry about it. Like I told you before, just help out with food and stuff. If there's something that you want personally, then grab it."

"I still feel like I'm living off of you guys," I said.

"Stop that," he warned. "I don't want to hear that again. You are living with us, Dustin. Believe me, we like having you here a lot."

"Thanks, Tommy," I said.

"No worries," he replied. "Now, tell me about you and Phillip."

"What about us?" I asked, grinning like an idiot.

"Well, you guys have been spending a lot of time together this week," he said. "Charlie told me that you guys have been going out to eat, to the movies and stuff. How are things?"

"We're friends, Tommy," I said.

"That's all?" He asked, smiling at me.

"That's all," I replied. "I like him a lot. I think he likes me, but I don't want to push myself on him or anything. Besides, he's only going to be here until August."

"That doesn't mean that the two of you can't get a little closer," he said.

"He'll be in Maine," I replied.

"Yeah," he said. "That would suck."

"So you see my problem?" I asked.

"Crystal clear," he said. "You guys could still get a little friendlier, though."

"I'm not opposed to it," I replied.

"Opposed to what?" Asked Phillip as he came down the stairs.

"Nothing," I replied. "Shower time."

Once I was in the shower, I couldn't keep Phillip off my mind. My dick was also thinking about him, and it demanded attention. It wouldn't even go soft after I let a load of cum Swirl down the drain. Phillip was really getting to me. I started to think of how good it would feel to just kiss him softly and hold him in my arms. That kind of thinking wasn't doing me any good, so I turned off the hot water just long enough for the shock to settle into my balls and deflate my erect friend.

When I got back downstairs, Vince, Andy and Steve were all home. Steve had brought food home from work, so this wasn't a day when anyone had to cook. We all sat around the dining room table and dug in. Phillip sat across from me, and I noticed that he was looking at me quite a few times. I wondered what he was thinking, and I wondered what Tommy had said to him while I was in the shower.

"What are everyone's plans for the weekend?" Asked Andy as we ate.

"I've got work tomorrow morning," said Steve. "Then I thought I'd just spend some time with Tommy at home."

"I work in the morning, too," replied Tommy.

"What about you, Vince?" Asked Andy.

"I'm spending the weekend with Maria," he said. "I'll pick her up from work this evening, and we're going to hide out for the weekend."

"And you two?" Andy asked, nodding in my direction. The fact that he nodded at me and included Phillip didn't escape my attention.

"Lawns tomorrow," I said. "Then I'm playing it by ear."

"Can I go with you guys again tomorrow?" Asked Phillip.

"Sure," I replied.

"Then, lawns tomorrow," he said, smiling. "Then I guess I'll play it by ear, too."

"And what about you?" Tommy asked Andy. "What are your plans for the weekend?"

"I'm going to Magic Land with Gage," he said. "We leave first-thing in the morning, and I'll be home on Sunday night. Late."

"Magic Land?" Asked Phillip.

"Yea, it's a theme park about thirty miles outside of town," I informed. "Lots of roller coasters and thrill rides."

"There are water rides and other attractions, too," said Steve. "It's a really cool place."

"I'd like to go some time," said Phillip, looking at me.

"Well, we could go," I said. "I don't know about this weekend, but maybe next weekend."

"Cool," he said, and I wondered why he told me he wanted to go instead of Andy.

"Isn't Charlie going to be gone next weekend?" Asked Tommy.

"Yeah, it's his reserve weekend," I replied. "I was thinking that I'd take Phillip to Magic Land next Sunday."

"Very cool," said Phillip. "Will you need my help while Charlie is gone?"

"Very much so," I replied. "Friday and Saturday."

"I'm in," he said.

After that Vince and I cleared the table and put the dishes in the dishwasher. He talked about Maria the whole time, and I wondered if he was planning to ask her to marry him that weekend. I didn't ask him that, though. I didn't think asking that question would be appropriate for some reason. He left as soon as the dishes were loaded.

Tommy put a DVD in the player, and we all sat around the living room to watch it. Phillip and I sat on the love-seat and I had to really concentrate on the movie to keep from just putting my arm around him. The movie was good, and thankfully, my attention was held by it. I don't know what would have happened if it had been a movie that I didn't like.

When we turned in for the night, I sat up in my bed to think about Phillip sleeping on the other side of my bedroom wall. I wanted so badly to tell him to just come crawl in bed with me, but I didn't think that was really a good thing just then. I still didn't know what he thought about me. For all I knew, he could just want to be my friend. Sure, there was times all week long that I thought that he was trying to get closer to me, but that didn't mean that he liked me as anything more than a friend. Just because we were gay didn't necessarily mean that he wanted to jump my bones. We were guys first of all, and guys had friends.

The next day, Charlie started to comment about the way that Phillip and I looked at each other. Thankfully, he waited until Phillip was picking up after me, and I was helping with the weed pulling. He said that it was cute how he blushed when I caught him looking at me, and I did the same thing when he caught me looking at him. I didn't think it was so cute, though. If anything, it frustrated the crap out of me.

After work I spent another load in a rather long shower and was forced to use the cold water to alleviate a certain stiffness in one region of my body. My situation wasn't helped when Phillip and I decided that we'd go out to eat, giving Tommy and Steve some alone time.

All through dinner we played the peek-a-boo game. We talked about Magic Land, but every now and then I'd catch him looking at me with a certain look in his eyes. I was sure he saw the same thing from me several times, too. I wondered when this tension would disappear and I could just ask him how he felt about me. I didn't know why it was so hard to just ask him, but I suspected that I was a little gun shy after Keith.

Now, you might think it's completely easy to sit across from a guy that you really like in a crowded restaurant. You might think that you could come up with so many things to talk about that had nothing to do with how much you wanted to touch him and kiss him. You might think that you could contain yourself every time he did something that you found just too damned sexy. You might even think that you could just think of other things to make your erection go away and give you some peace. You might think all of those things, but, believe me, you would be dead wrong.

This crazy feeling I had because of Keith was driving me insane. I wanted to be able to just tell him that I thought he was hot and be done with it. Phillip was, beyond any doubt, the sexiest guy I'd ever seen. Sitting across from him was both awesome and horrible. Something had to happen soon, or I was going to go completely crazy. Having him tell me that he wasn't interested in me for anything more than friendship would have even been acceptable compared to this.

When we left the restaurant and went to see a movie, I thought I'd be in for two solid hours of Hell. How was I going to sit next to him in a darkened theater without reaching across to touch him or something? Fate being the loving and attentive friend of mine that it was made sure that Phillip remained oblivious to my current situation. He happily discussed which movie we should see this time without showing any signs of sharing my discomfort in any way.

Fate shined further upon me when we got to the Cinemaplex. We did the expected things like buying popcorn, soda and one form of chocolate or another. We had a little round of opposing dialogue over which movie to actually watch. Sure, we'd decided on a movie while we were sitting in that evil restaurant that had us sitting at a table so narrow that our knees were practically touching the entire time, but when we got to the theater, there was a movie playing there that we didn't know about. Naturally, Phillip wanted to see that one.

It just so happened that the movie that he wanted to see happened to be a love story of sorts. Sure it had enough action in it to save it from being labeled a "chick flick," but the other movie was, I thought, much safer. There was no romantic element to it, and the action level was much higher than the film he wanted to see. We argued about it for a few minutes, but the deciding factor was something I never expected.

Keith was in the theater with another guy. They didn't see us, but as I watched them go in to see the movie I'd originally wanted to see, I quickly told Keith we'd watch the movie he wanted to see. Fate just kept throwing punches, and I was going to have to learn to roll with them. Now I had something completely different to worry about while we sat in the darkened theater.

"What's wrong?" Asked Phillip just before we bought our tickets.

"Nothing, why?" I asked, trying to give him a smile.

"For one thing, if you smile like that again, you'll scare all of the children in the place," he said. "What's wrong?"

"I just saw someone that I didn't want to see," I replied quickly. There was no point in denying it.

"Do you want to skip the movie and go somewhere else?" He asked.

"No," I sighed. "Let's just see the movie and try to have a good time."

"Can you have a good time now?" He asked, raising his eyebrows.

"I can have a good time," I said. "Who I saw isn't important."

"If you're sure," he said, but I could tell that he was clearly unconvinced.

We went into the theater, and I tried very hard not to think about Keith. I was slightly successful, but not completely. After Phillip repeated what he was saying to me, after we chose our seats, I knew that this wasn't going to be a pleasant evening. Phillip tried to pretend he didn't notice, but I knew he did.

The movie was actually pretty good, but it was only keeping half of my attention. I kept seething as I thought about Keith being under the same roof as me. What was he doing in the theater? He wasn't even supposed to be in Storyville anymore. What was he doing there? I had to resist the urge to get up and storm through the place until I was standing in front of him. I wanted to know why he'd lied about me to everyone who would listen. I wanted to know why he'd lied to my parents. He'd destroyed my relationship with them, and he had the nerve to walk into the theater with some new friend, smiling and laughing. The entire thing pissed me off.

I was supposed to be having a good time with Phillip, and all I could really think of was Keith. I hated him more and more with each passing day. I just wished that he would disappear forever. Sure, that's an evil thought, but after all that he had done to me, I believed that I was justified in thinking that way.

"Ok, what is your mind really on," Phillip said to me when we were sitting in a diner not far from the theater after the movie.

"I'm obvious, huh?" I asked, stirring the sugar in my cup of hot tea and not looking him in the eye.

"Well, I just repeated the same question to you three times and got no response any of those times," he said. "So I thought I was entitled to know what it was that was occupying your mind when you should be thinking about me."

"What?" I asked startled. Thinking about him? What was that supposed to mean? Did he know that up until I'd seen Keith in the theater I'd been thinking about him and going silently crazy?

"Well, when you're on a date, its customary to think about the person that you're on the date with," he said, smiling at me.

"Is that what this is?" I asked. "We're on a date?"

"What else would you call it?" He asked. "We've been going out to eat, catching movies, walking through the park and every time it's just us. I call that dating. Now, you have to know that you've been driving me crazy practically since the day I got to Storyville, and unless I'm mistaken, you've been looking at me with a look that tells me that you've been having a similar problem."

"You've been talking to Tommy," I accused.

"What does Tommy have to do with this?" He asked. "Are you telling me that this has been nothing but you trying to keep me occupied while I'm in town? Please tell me that it isn't just that."

"We've been dating this whole time?" I asked.

"I thought so," he replied.

"Oh, if you thought we were on dates all this time, then we definitely were," I said quickly. "I mean, I hope we were."

"So then tell me what's been keeping your mind off of me all night," he said.

"Remember in the theater when I told you I saw someone?" I asked.

"Yeah, you said that it was someone you didn't want to see," he reminded me.

"Right," I said. "It was Keith."

"He was at the theater?" He gasped. "You should have told me! I would have knocked his head off!"

"Oh really?" I asked, smiling at him. The idea that he would do something like that was actually kind of a turn on.

"After what he did to you?" He asked, raising his eyebrows. "Hell-yes!"

"So, we've been dating . . ." I said slowly, dragging out the last word.

"Yeah?" He questioned?

"So all along you and I have both been trying to figure out how the other feels, and the whole time we both felt the exact same way?" I finished my thought.

"Well, if I've been driving you half as crazy as you've been driving me, then I'd have to say yes," he replied.

"And what have I been doing to drive you crazy?" I asked.

"Oh, come on!" He cried. "You have been walking around every day, looking like you stepped out of a magazine and giving me all of these signals that tell me that you want me, and then you turn almost a cold shoulder on me."

"Me?" I gasped. "You've been doing all of that to me!"

"We have it bad," he chuckled.