Author's Note:

Hi readers! It took me a long time to write this one. I asked a few of you to read this in advance to give me their two cents. Some of them had a lot of things to say, which I thought was awesome. I hate the fact that a big chunk of this chapter ended up feeling forced and unnatural. It's mostly because I did a bad job of foreshadowing in the previous chapters so I had to cram it all in here.

With that said, I hope you like this chapter. I originally titled it The Truth About Tyler, but then I renamed it because the chapter ended up having more storylines than just that. I wrote a prologue just in case you wanted to get a little background of the characters in this chapter before you dive into it. The prologue's basically one big flashback which I separated from the story so that none of you get confused. This update's a long one so I hope the wait was worth it. I'd like to thank Adriel and Brad, for offering to help me out with this chapter. They pointed out all the weak parts in it... I couldn't change much of it though, but I do hope to do better in the next chapters.

I don't think I can update this on a regular basis like I used to since my job requires me to travel a lot. I think the best I can do right now is to update once a month. Again, I really value your comments and suggestions. This chapter is proof of that. Send me an e-mail at To all the readers I have, thank you for sticking with this story. It's your e-mails that let me know that you people still give a damn about it. As long as you tell me you're interested to read more, I'll keep writing. Thanks again. Okay, enough of that shite... here's the next chapter...




Prologue: Vince and Tyler

Vince waited patiently as his mother searched for the keys to their apartment. His eyes were still swollen from all the crying. At the age of seven, he lost his dad to a car accident. He didn't know why it happened; all that he knew was that he'd never see his dad again. He just sat on his chair and watched in silence as they lowered his father's casket. His eyes welled up as his mother threw the first rose in the grave.

"There," Moira pushed open the apartment door and let Vince in first.

He quietly walked to his room as his mother went to the kitchen to fix herself a glass of whisky. Vince sat on his bed and slowly pulled off his brand new leather shoes,
the ones his father bought him a couple of days earlier. He couldn't cry anymore, the tears just wouldn't come. He stared blankly at his father's old piano sitting at the corner of his room. He walked over to it and sat down.

He looked at the ivory for a long time, wishing that something would come out from the silence. He put his right hand on the keys and played one short and lonely chord, a glimpse of all that he felt at that moment.

It took a month and a half for things to get back to normal, or so it seemed. Moira was cooking Skirlie-stuffed chicken, something Vince's dad used to love. Vince decided to go out the hall and play right beside their apartment door. He noticed some men going up and down the hallway staircase, hauling furniture into the adjacent apartment unit. He decided to stand up and take a look.

He walked inside the other unit and saw a guy talking to one of the movers, telling him to put the couch down in the center of the room. His wife was busy looking for spots to hang their pictures on the wall.

"Are you lost?"

Vince turned around to see a young boy, probably his age, looking at him.

"No. I live next door."

"We're moving in here," the young boy smiled, "I'm Tyler."

Vince returned the smile and introduced himself, "I'm Vince."

"Where have 'ya been?" Moira asked as Vince walked in.

"I was next door," Vince sat down on one of the kitchen stools as his mother served him some food. "Mum, we have new neighbours."

"Oh. They moved in today?"

"Yep," Vince stuffed his mouth with chicken, "They're nice."

"You didn't bother them, did you?"

"Nope. They let me stay... Mum, is it okay if I played with Tyler."

"Who's Tyler?"

"He's the kid next door."

"I need to meet his parents first... but let's eat now, alright laddie?" Moira smiled at her son.

"Okay," Vince grinned.

Moira laughed as she and Tyler's parents talked in the living room. Vince was sitting at the edge of Tyler's bed, his tongue sticking out the side of his mouth as he moved his body side to side. Tyler, on the other hand, was fixated on the screen before him, his fingers moving quickly on the controllers. With one final kick to the face, Vince jumped up and down in celebration.

"Ha! I win! I win!"

Tyler put down his controller watched as the K.O. sign flashed on screen. "Yeah. But that was just one round. I can still beat you."

"I dare 'ya to beat me!" Vince said cockily.

Tyler took the controller as the two of them played video games all night. For some reason, Vince's arrogance matched his performance. He kicked Tyler's butt in all his games. Moira stopped by the door of Tyler's room to see that both of them had already fallen asleep on Tyler's bed with the TV still turned on.

Tyler's mom, smiled and whispered, "Thank you for letting Vince play with my son. He really wasn't too happy with the move. It's nice that he's found a friend this quick."

Moira smiled, "I'll take Vincent home now so Tyler can sleep better."

"No, it's okay. Let him sleep here."

The two mothers watched their sons sleep quietly beside each other before turning off the television and leaving them with their dreams for the night.

"Happy birthday!" Tyler smiled as he handed Vince his present.

"What is it?" Vince looked at the big box in his hands.

"Open it," Tyler smiled.

Vince excitedly ripped the wrapper and grinned as he pulled out the ukulele from the box, "Thanks!"

"You're welcome," Tyler kept smiling. "I knew you felt bad when your mom sold your dad's piano. I know it's not the same thing, but you can play with it."

"Where did you get the money?" Vince tried strumming the ukulele.

"I asked a little help from your Uncle Ronnie so he sent me money from Scotland... I paid half of it though," Tyler beamed.

"That old wanker?" Vince laughed. "Thanks," Vince smiled at his best friend.

"There you are!" Deb walked in Vince's room. She was wearing a pink party hat that Moira put on her. "Your mom said it's time to blow the candles."

Vince and Tyler looked at her and started laughing.

"Why are you two laughing?" she asked, very much annoyed.

"You're wearing pink."

Deb made an incomprehensible screaming sound and stormed out which made Vince and Tyler laugh even harder. Deb was one of the boys, growing up with three guys as her best friends. She was a tomboy and hated when people made her look girly. Tyler and Vince walked out of his room and went to where Moira had set the cake.

It was chocolate. Vince wasn't really a fan of cakes, but Lewis found a way to coerce him to make his mom bake a chocolate cake. Lewis was beaming beside the table as Moira lit all eleven candles on Vince's birthday cake. Everybody started singing along as Vince looked at his friends and made a wish before he blew the flames out.

"So what did you wish for?" Lewis asked Vince as he ate a huge chunk of chocolate cake.

"You don't ask that," Tyler spoke up, "If he tells you, the wish won't come true."

"It's okay," Vince grinned, "I wished we could stay friends forever."

"That's it?" Lewis asked, "That was your wish? Man, that's dumb! If I were you I'd wish for a car!"

"Do you even know how to drive?" Deb butt it.

"You look pretty in pink," Lewis teased her which made her lose it and started pulling his hair.

"Ow! Ow! Ow! Ow!" Lewis started screaming as Deb pulled his hair. Tyler and Vince just kept laughing as their two other friends started battling it out.

"I don't think it's dumb. I like your wish," Tyler whispered to Vince as he wrapped an arm around his best bud.

Vince was trying to cram for a test the following day. He really couldn't concentrate since he had other things in mind, things that normal thirteen year-old boys think about when they're alone. Vince slipped his hand down his crotch and started rubbing it. He felt himself getting hard until he heard a knock on his bedroom door.

"I need to study mum," Vince hollered, not wanting to be disturbed.

"It's me."

Vince stood up and unlocked his door. Tyler looked at him. His eyes obviously watery but was trying to hide them from Vince, "Can I sleep here tonight?"


Tyler was lying on his side, facing away from Vince. Vince was also on his side, facing the opposite direction. The two had no problem sleeping side by side. They'd been doing it since they first met. When Tyler's parents left on trips he'd usually be left at Vince's and he'd sleep over. For some reason, Vince couldn't sleep. He turned his body around and faced Tyler. He quietly looked at his best bud's nape and smiled. He loved Tyler. He was his best friend... Then he heard it, the stifled sobs. He'd only seen Tyler cry twice. The first time was when Tyler broke his leg in a bike accident. Vince stayed with him in the hospital all night. The second time was when Tyler saw his dad hitting his mom. He went to sleep at Vince's and Vince comforted him the whole night.

He quietly sat up and shook Tyler gently on the shoulder, "What's wrong?"

Tyler quickly wiped his tears without looking at Vince.

"What's wrong?" Vince repeated.


"Come on. Tell me," Vince insisted.

Tyler sat up and looked at Vince, "My mom left."

"What do you mean?"

"Last night she had a fight with my dad. She said my dad was having an affair. She said she wanted to go. She left us and my dad doesn't even care," Tyler's tears started falling on his cheeks, "She's gone."

Vince didn't know how to react. This was the first time he'd seen Tyler this devastated. He started tearing up as well and extended his arm and wrapped it around Tyler, letting him cry on his shoulder.

"I don't know what to do."

Vince felt Tyler's tears on him. He just listened and held his friend closer.

Tyler woke up in Vince's bed. He looked up to see Vince smiling at him, "Rise and shine buddy."

Tyler rubbed the sleep off his eyes and saw that Vince had made him breakfast in bed... well he made his mom do it anyway. Vince was holding the ukulele Tyler gave him two years earlier. "Are you okay?"

Tyler nodded.

"She'll come back. I know she will."

"I hope you're right."

"Come on! When have I ever been wrong?" Vince grinned.

Tyler laughed, "You're full of yourself, you know that?"

"Shut up and eat 'yer food," Vince smiled as he started playing a tune.

Somewhere over the rainbow, way up high
And the dreams that you dreamed of, once in a lullaby
Somewhere over the rainbow, blue birds fly
And the dreams that you dreamed of, dreams really do come true

Tyler smiled as he took a bite of toast. Vince winked at him as he continued singing.

Someday I'll wish upon a star
Wake up where the clouds are far behind me
Where trouble melts like lemon drops
High above the chimney tops that's where you'll find me
Somewhere over the rainbow bluebirds fly
And the dream that you dare to, why, oh why can't I?

In His Songs
Chapter 16: Vince's Birthday

Vince shifted his numb arm, trying not to wake Kevin up. He looked at him in silence as he held him in bed. Kevin's face was angelic. The soft morning light traced the shadows on his naked torso perfectly. Vince let out a slow yawn as his eyes took a scope of his apartment. He could see the dark outlines of furniture in the haze. Vince would have to move some of his stuff to accommodate what Kevin would be bringing in. He smiled at the fact that they were finally moving in together. He felt Kevin shift his head on his naked chest and Kevin's hand moving across his bare stomach. Everything was perfect, Vince thought as he slowly ran his hand through Kevin's hair. He carefully slipped out of bed and kissed Kevin on the cheek. He walked barefoot on the cold floor as he searched for his boxers Kevin had tossed away the previous night.

Everything was still very vivid in his mind, their tongues mashing against each other, Kevin fucking him in different states of undress, in different positions, in different places inside the apartment, and the several loads he blew in Kevin's mouth. He felt his stiff morning wood coming back to life as he finally saw his underwear on the couch. He would have to deal with that later. First, he needed to make Kevin some breakfast. Vince washed up, dressed in silence, and grabbed his keys. He watched in silence as Kevin slept on their bed. He leaned over him and kissed him on the cheek. Kevin's naked body silently turned towards him as he slowly opened his eyes.

"Good morning," Kevin smiled, his hair still a mess.

Vince smiled, "Go back to sleep. I'm going out for a bit. I'll be back in a few to make you breakfast."

Kevin sat up and stretched his arms, "No. Let me do it. It's the least I can do after what you and Xavier did yesterday."

"What do you mean it's the least you can do? You're moving in with me. What more can I ask? Now you go back to sleep and I'll take care of everything."

Kevin smiled, "You're spoiling me."

"I love you," Vince grinned as he put on his coat and walked out the door.

Kevin looked around Vince's apartment. It was going to be his as well. He still couldn't believe how lucky he was to find the perfect guy for him. It was almost unreal. He slid out of bed and headed for the bathroom. He took a leak and washed his face. His eyes were deep from lack of sleep. It was a crazy night, definitely one he would remember. He put on his underwear and headed for the kitchen. There were a few eggs in the fridge and some slices of bread. He took them out and lit the stove. As he cracked open the shells on the hot pan, Kevin checked the time. He still had two hours to spare before he met up with his friends at the dorm. He had a plan set for Vince's birthday and he was going to need their help. Kevin smiled at the thought of seeing Vince's face when he sees the surprise they set up for him.

"Oh shit." Kevin quickly tried to rescue the burning eggs in the pan to no avail. "Well at least there's three more to spare."

Vince was humming a song in his head as he entered the store. It was a cheerful tune without lyrics, something that had been spinning in his mind the very moment he woke up with his Kevin in his arms. He walked to the back of the store and pulled out a carton of milk and orange juice from the fridge. On his way to the counter, he spotted a pack of twinkies and decided to take one as well. He checked a couple more aisles just to see if he had everything before heading to the cashier.

He put the stuff down on the counter as he waited for the young guy before him to pay up. The girl behind the cash register was waiting impatiently as the guy searched for his wallet. Vince glanced over the counter to see what the guy bought; it was a box of condoms. Vince grinned and started checking him out. He looked like a high school student. 'Probably a junior,' Vince guessed. He was around 5'8" with brownish-blonde hair. He had a good build to him, a little pudgy in places, but just right.

"Do you have the money or not?" the girl asked impatiently.

"Uh... hold on. I might have some change here," the guy dug around his pocket hoping to have enough. He pulled out a couple of dimes and started counting them in his hand. "I think I dropped my wallet somewhere."

"Here. I'll just pay for it," Vince handed the girl a twenty.

"Uh... thanks," the young guy smiled sheepishly, a bit embarrassed by the whole situation.

"Better safe than sorry," Vince grinned as he showed him the box he took as well. "I need one myself. I'm gonna need a lot of them."

The girl handed the young guy his purchase and started punching all of Vince's items.

"Thanks again," the young guy smiled as he left the store.

"Don't mention it."

"You're back," Kevin smiled as he plated the eggs and set them aside.

"I thought I'd be the one to make you breakfast in bed," Vince placed the stuff he bought on the counter as he wrapped his arms around Kevin's waist and gave him a kiss on the side of his neck.

"Well, I beat you to it," Kevin smiled as he turned around and kissed his boyfriend. "Sit down."

Vince grinned as Kevin set a plate of eggs and some toast in front of him. He poured coffee into a mug and set it down as well. Vince started eating as Kevin watched him. They were exchanging quiet smiles from across the table. "So... I was thinking we can move your stuff in this Friday since we'd be done with finals by then," Vince suggested as he took a bite of his toast.

"Are you kidding? It's your birthday on Friday. You're not doing anything," Kevin said as he sat down with his own plate.

Vince stopped eating and looked at Kevin with a coy expression. Kevin noticed Vince's stare and asked, "What?"

"You're planning something," Vince grinned as he waved the fork in front of Kevin's face.


"Yes you are. You're up to something."

"I'm not," Kevin denied, trying his best not to make eye contact.

"Better make sure it's good then." Vince smiled as he took another bite of his toast.

"I told you. I'm not planning anything."

"Really?" Vince tossed the bread aside, "Well I'm planning something right now."

"What?" Kevin looked at him.

Vince pulled out the box of condoms inside the grocery bag and pulled Kevin out of his chair.

Matt lay down quietly on his bed. He'd been doing that the rest of the morning. He didn't know how he felt. Of course he was hurt, how could he not be? He thought the guy liked him. He was his first... almost his first. He'd never done that with anyone. He felt so vulnerable and used. Yet, the rational guy in him kept telling him to move on. He knew what he needed to do, but he felt like he needed to sulk for a while. He was contemplating getting out of bed since Kevin was coming in a few minutes. He sat up and looked at the empty bed on the other side of the room. Kevin was going to move out the following semester. He was going to have a new roommate. Matt sighed as he heard a knock on the door.

"Who is it?"

"It's Xavier."

Matt opened the door and let Xavier in. He had a hoodie on and his favorite baseball cap beneath it. "Kevin's not here yet?"

"Nope. But he should be. Do you want anything? We have soda..."

"No thanks. I'm good."

Matt offered Xavier a chair as he went to their small fridge and took a sip of milk straight from the carton.

"So... how've you been?"

"I'm doing good," Matt answered, as he put the milk back. "You?"

"Good," Xavier nodded as he pulled off the hoodie he was wearing. It was quite warm inside the room. He took off his baseball cap and ruffled his hair a bit as Matt watched from a distance. Then, it hit him.

"Hey. You look like someone without the hat on," Matt chimed in excitedly as if he had the answer to some quiz show.


"The prince guy... Harry. Yeah, that's it."

Xavier laughed, "Hell no."

"Yeah. You do," Matt chuckled for the first time after the incident with Keegan.

An awkward silence crept between them. Matt and Xavier never really talked that much. They barely even knew anything about each other except for the bits and pieces of information Kevin passed along. Matt tried to find something to do or say just to break the ice. He watched as Xavier stretched his arms for a while, his well-defined body flexing under the confines of his shirt. "So uh..." Matt spoke just before he heard another knock on the door. "I'll get it. It must be Kevin."

Matt walked over to the door and opened it to see Deb and Lewis.

"Hi Matty!" Deb smiled as she pinched his cheek. "How's little Matty doing?" she asked, pertaining to Matt's penis, which she saw when they played a trick on him that Halloween. Matt blushed.

"Hey," Lewis greeted him as he walked in.

Deb and Lewis saw Xavier already seated on Kevin's side of the room. Lewis gave Xavier a nod which Xavier responded to by nodding back. The two newcomers chose to sit on Matt's bed, a safe distance away from Xavier.  Matt could feel a little tension between the two groups and he instantly knew that he was going to be the 'conversational scapegoat' as he called it.

"So Matty? How've you been doing?" Deb started as they heard another knock on the door.

"Finally!" Matt sighed in relief as he opened the door.

Kevin walked in with a smile on his face. "Hey Matty! Good, everyone's here."

Matt closed the door and took a seat beside Xavier.

"So what do you have planned?" Xavier asked.

"As all of you know, Vince's birthday is this coming Friday. So I want us all to throw a little surprise party for him."

"Cool. A party. I'm gonna call some people," Deb spoke.

"No. I want it to be an intimate party, you know? Just us friends."

"Oh," Deb frowned, "Well that sucks." Everybody in the room instantly looked at Deb. "What? I mean, what's the point of throwing a party if it's just us? Vince likes being in crowds. It'll be great. Remember the party we threw for him three years ago?" Deb looked at Lewis.

"Oh yeah. That was crazy. We almost got arrested. Good thing Tyler knew how to drink and drive like a mad man."

Kevin looked at Lewis at the mention of Tyler's name. "Tyler? Tyler Lockhart. You know the guy?"

"Well, yeah. He's a friend of ours."

"Why don't we invite him to the party?" Matt asked.

"That's unlikely," Deb answered.

"Why?" Kevin asked.

Deb bit her lip, "Well... because Tyler's busy. He's a very busy guy."

"Yeah," Lewis agreed. "I mean he hasn't even talked to Vince yet. His schedule is that messed up."

"Oh," Kevin knew they were hiding something.

"Well if Kevin wants a simple small party, let's give Vince the best damn simple party he's ever gonna get," Xavier stood up and wrapped an arm around Kevin. He noticed the odd stares of Lewis and Deb and quickly pulled his arm back.

"So what do you want us to do?" Matt asked.

"Well, Deb, you have to be the decoy and act as a distraction. You need to lure Vince away from his apartment on the day itself."

"Oh god, that's going to be torture," Deb said to herself, loud enough for everybody to hear.

"Matt you help me with the decorations and the set-up of the place, while Xavier and Lewis can go buy the food."

"I want to go with Matt," Xavier quickly spoke up. "Lewis knows Vince's taste in decorations and stuff like that. Matt and I can just get the food. Tell us what he wants and we'll bring it there."

"Okay," Kevin nodded.

"This is going to be a disaster," Deb whispered.

"Tell me about it," Lewis agreed.

Xavier waited for the elevator to come up. He stayed a little longer so that he wouldn't get stuck with Deb and Lewis. He knew they didn't like him; the feeling was definitely mutual. He could see past their fake smiles. Vince was okay, but Xavier couldn't understand why he would have those two as his friends. Xavier licked his lips, itching for a glass of wine, but he was quitting... trying to. He heard a door close from behind him followed by soft footsteps on the hallway floor. He turned his head around to see Matt, twirling his keys on his finger, walking towards him. Matt accidentally flung the keys a few feet away and quickly, and embarrassingly, picked it up.

"You're going out?" Xavier smiled as Matt found his composure.

"Yeah, I'm getting breakfast. Kevin just passed out on his bed. I think he and Vince had a great time last night," Matt chuckled as the elevator doors opened.

"I'd say they had a great time all morning as well." Xavier punched the button as the elevator slowly descended. "Mind if I join you? I'm starving."


Another one of those moments of awkward silence fell between them as Matt started swaying his torso to and fro, waiting for the elevator to stop. "Uh... Do you like donuts?"

"They're okay."

"Cool. I'm going for donuts."

The doors slid open and both of them headed out at the same time, adding more awkwardness to the mix. Xavier stopped first and let Matt pass through. Matt blushed as he hesitated a bit. It took him a few seconds to realize that Xavier was waiting for him to go first before he went out the elevator.

Xavier put his hood over his baseball cap and put his hands in his pockets. "Where to?"

"This way," Matt led Xavier out the door and started walking to a nearby diner. They didn't talk much on the way, just bits and pieces about Kevin's party plans for Vince, which they both agreed was going to be a disaster. They took one of the empty tables at the back as one of the waitresses took their orders.

"What're you having?"

"Um... I think I'll have some of those donuts. Probably three of those frosted ones... oh and a coffee... black."

"And you?" the agitated waitress looked at Xavier.

"Just some bird seed and city juice. Thanks."

The waitress walked off to the counter, leaving a puzzled Matt staring at Xavier, "Birdseed?"

Xavier smiled, "It's cereal. It's something I learned from Agnes. She's a waitress at a diner in Queens. I'll take you there some time, if you want."

"Sure," Matt smiled, "What's city juice?"


"Oh... but isn't it longer? I mean, you could just say water."

"What's the fun in that?"

Another awkward silence fell between them. It was starting to kill Matt. Was he nervous? Why would he be? Xavier pulled his hoodie down and placed his cap on the table. He ruffled his red hair and looked around the busy diner. Out of the blue, he spoke, "Kev must really love Vince."

"What made you say so?"

"He never planned anything for me like this when we were together."

"Well, Kevin's a really nice guy and-"

"You like him." Xavier cut him off, his eyes on Matt.

"What?" Matt was shocked.

"You can't really hide it. I can see it."

"Well... How the hell did you know?"

"I don't know, actually... but there's something about him. Kev has this au naturale thing going on. He doesn't see it in himself yet because he often takes himself for granted. That's why I think he and Vince are perfect together. Vince brings that out of him. He's a lot more confident, and a little less anti-social now," Xavier smiled at that inside joke.

"That's creepy."

"What is?"

"You're doing the Vince thing. You're reading minds."

Xavier laughed as their orders got to their table. Matt quickly took a bite of his donut and smiled like a happy puppy, at least that's what Xavier thought. He thought he was cute, the natural blonde in his hair starting to show through the color. Matt caught him staring and raised an eyebrow. "Aren't you going to eat your birdseed?"

"I was going to... but this doesn't look that appetizing," Xavier pushed the bowl away from him, "I think I'm going to skip breakfast."

"No! Breakfast is the most important meal of the day. You need to have enough carbohydrates to convert into usable energy so that your body functions well throughout the day. You have to have it," Matt insisted.

"Do you have any clue how geeky you just sounded?" Xavier smirked.

"I am a geek. Get used to it," Matt chuckled as he took another bite of his donut.

Xavier took a deep breath as he watched Matt happily eat his food, "I hope you don't get offended with what I'm going to say, but for a guy who just broke up with his boyfriend, you don't look sad."

Matt downed some of his coffee and put his donut down. "I don't know what Kevin told you, but he wasn't my boyfriend... but it's okay. I have to deal with it sooner or later... Have you ever had that feeling when you hate someone so much but you really can't because you love them?"

"I did. I mean, you do know what happened between me and-"

"Oh, yeah. Well, that's what I'm feeling right now."

"But you're dealing with it so well. When Kev and I broke up, I was a mess."

"I get depressed when I'm alone, but that won't stop me from functioning normally."

"Wow. It must be nice to be you for one day."

Matt smiled as he wiped his mouth with a paper towel. "I've heard that before."

"Am I on trial again?" Vince shook his head as Deb tried to reason with him.

"I like Kevin, but this whole party he's planned out is a stupid idea."

"I told you, I like it. I'm actually pissed you spoiled the surprise for me."

"Cut the bull Vince, you always know anyway."

"Except for the one that Tyler did. That was classic," Lewis butt in as he rummaged through Vince's fridge in the kitchen.

"I know the surprise every time because you keep spoiling it for me." Vince watched as Deb paced around the couch he was sitting on. "Besides, I like the idea. I think a small party would be good for a change. I want to celebrate Kevin moving in with me as well so I think just having you guys there is enough."

Deb stopped pacing and looked at Vince, "You know what's worse?"


"Xavier's coming. I think he even planned this whole intimate thing."

"What the hell are you talking about?" Vince groaned, knowing fully well where Deb was taking the conversation. She had this theory about Xavier trying to steal Kevin back. After what Xavier had done for him and Kevin, he didn't want to hear another word about it. "Xavier's a nice guy."

"Yeah. He's a nice guy, who happens to be your boyfriend's ex. He's going to barge in and screw with your relationship."

"Oh shut up!" Vince snapped.

Lewis watched from a distance, trying not to get involved in the heat of the argument. Deb shook her head in frustration. Vince could see her eyes flaring up at him, "Don't you ever tell me to shut up! You know I know these things. I'm trying to help you out. I know what's going to happen. If you keep closing your eyes to it, Kevin's going to end up like  Tyler."

"Leave him out of this."

"Why should I? You know it's true."

"It's not! Kevin is different. He wouldn't do that to me."

"Wouldn't he? That's the same thing you said about Tyler when he chose that ho of yours."

"Fuck you!" Vince stood up and lunged at Deb which made Lewis run over to restrain him.

"That's not cool!" Lewis shouted.

"Get off me!" Vince shouted as Lewis gripped him tighter.

"Fuck you Vincent! Fuck you!" Deb screamed. "You know what? I made a mistake. I shouldn't have taken your side. Tyler really didn't do anything wrong. He was smart enough to know not to hang around with you."

"You fucking bitch!" Vince lost it and tried to get loose from Lewis' grip. Lewis did what he had to do to calm him down and sent his knee crashing into Vince's gut. Vince collapsed on the sofa. He had the wind knocked out of him as Lewis let him go.

"I'm sorry man. But I had to do it."

Vince groaned silently on the couch. The fresh pain still surging through him.

Deb had her face hidden behind her hands. Lewis wrapped his arms around her as she started to cry. Vince felt Lewis' eyes on him as little guilt after what he tried to do. She was spilling tears to see them that way. Vince had never really had a fight with her like that before. "I'm sorry."

"Look," Lewis spoke, "We're just looking out for you. We don't want it to happen again. Just consider what we're telling you."

Vince nodded.

Deb pushed Lewis away and looked at Vince, "You're hopeless." Vince watched as she stormed out of the apartment. Lewis looked at Vince one last time before he followed his girlfriend out.

Vince rested his head on the back of the couch. He shook his head. He wasn't thinking straight. He was never violent. Never. Something about what Deb said just hit him hard and he couldn't stop himself. Maybe she was right. 'But Kevin's different,' Vince told himself as he heard his cellphone ringing. He forced himself to stand up and answer his phone.


"Hi. Your voice sounds funny. Are you okay?"

"Yeah," Vince lied. He was still a bit in pain after the hard blow Lewis gave him. "What's up?"

"Nothing," Kevin smiled, "Just checking up on you... I love you."

"I love you too."

Kevin ended the call and put the phone down on his table. He was flipping through the pages of the phonebook, trying to look for a certain Tyler Lockhart in the list. Luckily for him, there was one Lockhart residence somewhere in Lower Manhattan. Matt walked in the room and took off his jacket. He noticed how cheery Kevin was as he pulled off his shoes. "What're you so happy about?"

"Everything's going according to plan."

"Do you really think Vince will like it?"

"Why not?"

"It's just going to be us. Doesn't Vince have other friends? Family?"

"Well, yeah."

"Why don't you invite them?" Matt suggested as he stripped down to his boxers.

"Well his mom and his uncle are in Scotland... and I have no intention of inviting any of his screaming fangirls, not to mention his screaming fanboys."

Matt chuckled at Kevin's comment.

"I'm heading out to see what cake I'll buy him. Wanna come?"

"Nope. I still have some studying to do. Wait, aren't you going to study for your finals?"

"I don't think I want to finish it."

"What?" Matt was surprised with the words that spilled out his roommate's mouth, "Why?"

"Well I thought getting a job instead of going to class. I mean, it's pointless. I'm going to live with Vince now and I want to help out with the rent and the bills."

"You can't just throw it away Kev. Didn't you talk to Vince about this?"

"Well, yeah."

"And what did he say?"

"He said I should stick to my studies."

"Ha!" Matt beamed, "That's good advice right there. Study!"

"Okay, whatever. Cake now, study later. Bye!"

Matt sighed as he watched Kevin walk out. "This is bad." He took out his phone and thought about it for a minute. He punched a number and waited for an answer, "Are you busy? I need your help with Kev."

'Red Velvet... Shortcake... Cheescake?' Kevin looked at the selection on display and shook his head, 'That's Xavier's favorite. What the hell is Vince's? Stupid. Stupid. Why the hell don't I know this? I suck as a boyfriend... I suck.'

The woman behind the counter had been watching him eye the cakes for a good ten minutes already. She smiled at the young guy politely and gave her suggestion, "Why don't you try our chocolate fudge cake? It's good for all occasions."

"I don't know if he likes chocolate."

"Is it for your dad?"

"No," Kevin smiled, "It's for my boyfriend." He felt good saying it out loud. There was no awkwardness in it. He was proud. Something about Vince made him feel comfortable just saying it. Unfortunately for him, the lady wasn't as comfortable as he was when she walked away and went back to count the change in the register.

'Walnut Pie?' Kevin was stumped. There were so many cakes in the store. He decided to move on to the other fridge. A guy walked in the store, but Kevin didn't pay attention. His mind was pacing. Trying to think about cake was difficult, knowing exactly where he was heading to next. It was a long shot. Trying to invite Vince's long lost best friend... and fuck buddy, was going to be difficult. He didn't know if the guy would be a total jerk, and he didn't know if Vince would like his little surprise... 'But what's there not to like? Vince would love to see his old friend come to his party,' Kevin thought as he moved to another row of cakes. He was debating with himself about Lemon pies when something that the guy at the counter said caught his attention.

"I need to pick up the Torte I ordered yesterday."

"Name and receipt please."

The guy pulled out the receipt and handed it to the lady. "It's Tyler Lockhart."

"Tyler what?"


Kevin turned around as saw the guy in the black jacket. 'No fucking way,' Kevin thought to himself, 'What are the odds?' The guy was a little taller than him, and a bit more built. He had the same brown hair as Kevin had, only his was longer and tied in a ponytail. He had a scruff of hair on his chin and a similarly shaped nose. Kevin finally understood what Deb said when she had 'examined' him the first time they met. Kevin knew it was probably a bad idea, but his feet and mouth were quicker than his mind at that moment. "Excuse me, did you say you were Tyler Lockhart?"

Tyler turned to look at Kevin, "Yeah. Who're you?"

"I'm Kevin," Kevin stretched his hand which Tyler shook politely, "I'm a friend of Vince."

"Vince?" Tyler let go of Kevin's hand as the woman brought him his order. She pulled off the lid and showed him the Torte in mint condition. Tyler nodded as she closed the box and started tying it up with a ribbon. Tyler returned his focus on Kevin, "You're a friend of his?"

"Actually... I'm his boyfriend."

"Oh. Well, nice to meet you then. How is he?"

"He's good. It's his birthday this Friday."

"Yeah, I know," Tyler nodded as the woman handed him the box. "Let me guess. You're trying to buy him a cake?"

"Yeah," Kevin smiled, "I'm having a problem though. I don't know what kind of cake he likes."

"He doesn't like cakes."


"You can try getting a deep fryer."

"A deep fryer?" Kevin was confused.

"Yeah. That and a bunch of Chocolate bars. Knowing Vince, he'd go for the Snickers." Tyler read the look on Kevin's face. "I'm not joking. He likes deep-fried Snickers. It was something his mom made a lot when we were kids."

"Thanks for the suggestion," Kevin smiled, still trying to figure out if this guy was screwing with him.

"It was nice meeting you again. Tell Vince that I wish him happy birthday," Tyler picked up his cake.

"Why don't you tell him yourself? Come to the party this Friday."

"Nah. I can't crash Vince's party."

"You won't be crashing the party. I invited you. Besides, Vince would love to see you there."

"He said that?"

"Yeah," Kevin lied.

"I'll take a rain check."

"Can I have your number?"

"Sure," Tyler put his cake down as Kevin handed him his phone. He punched his digits and handed it back. "I gotta go. I have another party to go to."

"Thanks again. I'll send you the address."

Tyler grabbed his box and walked out of the shop. Kevin noticed the woman looking at him, shaking her head. 'Bitch,' Kevin thought to himself as he walked out the cake shop. 'Now where the hell can I buy a deep fryer?'

Kevin tried to balance the box on his knee as he fished for his keys with his right hand. He was holding up a bag of candy bars with his other hand as he tried to figure out how to unlock the door. 'Why the hell am I still holding this?' Kevin put down the bag of chocolates and carefully placed the box down before opening the door. He quickly picked up the box and the candy bag as he walked in.

"Can you help me with this?" Kevin shouted for Matt.

"Let me take this," Vince took the box from Kevin.

"What the hell are you doing here?" Kevin was shocked. He wasn't supposed to be there. "Where's Matty?"

"He's at the library studying for his Political History final." Vince examined the box and grinned when he saw the bag Kevin was carrying, "A deep fryer and Snickers? Is this for my party?"

"No," Kevin lied. "I bought it for me."

"You're a fan of deep-fried Snicker bars?"


"Since when?"

"Since I learned how to make them."

"You don't have to lie to me you know?"

Kevin just kept quiet as he stuffed the candy bars in the fridge. He knew he was caught. There was no point in hiding it. "You like deep-fried Snickers, so I bought them."

"Did Lew tell 'ya?"

"Um... yeah," Kevin lied. since Vince knew about that surprise already, so he thought that he might as well keep Tyler a secret. "What are you doing here?"

"You can't quit school."

Kevin closed the fridge, "Matty called you?"

"You should thank him. He's an awesome friend. Now, I thought we talked about this."

"We did."

"What happened?"

"I don't want to stay in school. I can find a writing job so I can help you out with the bills."

"No." Vince said sternly, "If you're going to quit school because of the move then I think you shouldn't move in with me."

"I'm moving in with you."

"Then stay in school. Let me handle the bills. I wouldn't ask you to move in with me if I didn't have a plan."

"But I want to quit."

"I won't let you. It's either you stay in school or I'm getting my keys back."

"Why the hell are you doing this?"

"Because I know you're making a wrong decision. If you really want to help out, find a job that would let you stay in school. If I can do it, I know you can do better. Promise me that you're not going to drop out." Vince looked at Kevin, who had his arms crossed during the entire argument.

Kevin was pouting. He knew Vince had a point, a damn good one, "I promise."

"Good. Now start hitting the books. I brought mine here so we can study together... and no, we're not going to have sex. It's time to study... we can fuck like bunnies when you're already staying at my place."

Kevin sighed, "Fine... but I have to admit, you're sexy when you're trying to be persuasive."

Vince grinned, "I'm always sexy."

Matt walked out the hall, relieved. At that moment, he could breathe easy. He was done with all his finals and had Vince's party to go to the following day. Everything was coming to a close, the semester, the year, his feelings for Keegan.


He recognized the face. Chris' deep blue eyes still pierced through him. Matt forced a polite smile as his ex-team captain walked towards him. "I heard you quit the team."

"Yeah. I gave coach my resignation."

"That's too bad. I was hoping you'd stick around. You were the best among the newbies this year."

"I realized that swimming isn't really my thing."

Chris just nodded even though he didn't agree with him. "So what are your plans?"

"I'm just going to concentrate on my studies right now. That's what I came here for."

"That's cool." Chris pulled out a small envelope and handed it to Matt. "Keegan wanted me to hand this to you."

"How is he?"

"He's fine. He's done with his defence."

"Wow. So both of you are graduating already? Congratulations."

"Thanks." Chris smiled. "Are you going to stay here for the holidays?"

"I'm thinking about it."

"Well if you are, you can come over to the apartment. I'm throwing a New Year's party there. It's gonna be awesome."

"Sure," Matt smiled.

"Okay. I guess I'll see you then. Happy Holidays!"

"You too." Matt couldn't help but check out Chris' butt as he walked away. His team captain still gave him a boner. Matt sighed as he felt the envelope in his hands. He didn't want to open it. He wasn't sure what Keegan put in there. It must've been a letter, but he didn't want to read it. Matt thought he made everything clear when he left Keegan alone in the diner. He didn't want to remember him. He wanted nothing to do with him anymore. He walked over to the nearest trashcan and thought about it for a second. Matt sighed as he pocketed the envelope in his jacket. 'Later,' he thought.

Xavier pulled off his sweatshirt and tossed it over the couch. He went to the kitchen and looked at the bottles sitting all over his counter. There were eight bottles of red wine, one vodka, one gin, and a couple of light whites. They were staring at him, pleading to be drunk. He took a bottle of Merlot and popped it open. He took it with him to the couch and turned on the TV. He was done with finals, all he had to do was go to Vince's party, get his grades, and fly off to Melbourne for the holidays. It wasn't something he was excited about. He felt his cellphone vibrating in his pocket as he took a quick swig from the bottle.

"When's your flight?"

"On the 23rd. Why are you calling?"

"Can't I just call my son?"

"Dad, you rarely check up on me. Why are you calling me?" Xavier put the bottle down.

"It's about the Gallagher deal. What did Tony tell you exactly?"

"He proposed a small merger with one of our lines so I told them I'd look over their papers and send them off to you. Why? What's the matter?"

"I want you to decline."


"Yes. Tell Tony that we're not interested."


"The Gallaghers aren't really the kind of people we want to associate with. Their stocks are going down and their family is a mess. We wouldn't want to tarnish any of our companies with them, do we?"

"But why would you tell me to meet with them if you weren't interested in the first place?"

"Just do it. And one more thing, keep away from that Andrew Gallagher. That boy is trouble."

Xavier heard the line drop as another GAP commercial filled his widescreen TV. He wasn't sure what made his dad change his mind so quickly, and why his dad knew about him meeting Andrew Gallagher.

The envelope had been sitting on Matt's table for an hour. He thought of Keegan and their last conversation. Matt was confused again, confused about everything. It all seemed to go so fast. A couple of months ago, he was happy just to get away from his folks, but then Keegan happened. He questioned himself, and everything that happened between them. 'He wasn't ready,' Matt thought to himself as he remembered the very first time he and Keegan kissed. His cock brushed against Keegan's hole and he said that he wasn't ready. Matt knew that he wasn't ready for it as well. It was the very first time he ever did anything sexual with a guy... or anybody else. Keegan was his first, even though they didn't fuck.

What was so important that Keegan had to write him a letter; a letter that had been waiting to be read? It was killing him to know, but the words that he said in that diner were very final. He didn't want anything to do with him. He was used and confused. He needed somebody, but he didn't know who. His hormones were going haywire.

"Hey! How did it go?"

Kevin walked in the room with a smile on his face, "Piece of cake. If I don't ace all those tests, then something's insanely wrong with this school." He tossed his jacket aside and fell face first on his bed.

"Are you excited about tomorrow?"

"Yeah. I just hope everything goes as planned. Deb's going to pull Vince out of the apartment so that Lewis and I can set-up."

"What are you gonna do to his place?"

Kevin sat up and chucked off his shoes. "Lewis trashed all my ideas since he said Vince wasn't into balloons and streamers."

"Thank God," Matt blurted.



"So we decided not to put any decorations. We're just going to set up a piano, some candles, a bar somewhere in the kitchen, and the deep fryer."

"That's cool."

"I need you guys to pick up a couple of chips. I'm making the dips there and Lewis says he'll bring some food from the hotel. Oh, and Xavier's going to haul all the alcohol from his room. We need that, plus he needs the detox anyway."

Matt chuckled. "So everything's set?"

"It looks like it. Hey, are you hungry?"

"Yeah. I haven't eaten all day. Let's grab a pizza."


Deb heard the store door open from the back. She placed the King novels back on their shelf and went to the register, "The store's closed."

"Well you should flip the sign then," Vince grinned.

Deb sighed, "Have you come here to apologize?"


"Then start grovelling." Deb continued stacking the rest of the books on the counter in order.

"I'm a total jerk. I shouldn't have shouted at you."

"Keep going."

"I didn't know what came over me. I'm really sorry."

Deb stopped stacking and looked at Vince, "And?"

"And what?"

"Tell me that I'm right."

"But you're not."

"I'm always right about these things."

Vince covered his face with his palm in frustration. He didn't want to argue with her again. "Look, Deb, I love you to bits, but this is crazy, and I know you know that. I'm in love with Kevin and nothing's going to change that. Even if he leaves me, I'll still love him. I'll fight for him. I'm not going to end up like I did with Tyler."

Deb walked over to Vince and put her hand on the side of his face. His eyes were as innocent as they were when they were still kids. She smiled, a lonely subdued smile. "We just don't want to see you get hurt. I wish you'd take care of yourself more. It was hard for us to, you know?"

He could see Deb's glassy eyes starting to well up as he smiled. Deb's hand was still on his cheek. "I know, and I love you and Lew for sticking with all my crap. I admit, I did a stupid thing with Tyler. I wish I hadn't... I miss our old merry band."

Deb smiled and playfully slapped across the face. "Well it's over."

"Have you talked to him lately?"

"No. He's been really busy lately. It was Milo's birthday yesterday."

"Oh, I forgot."

"Here," Deb walked behind the cashier and took out a large box and placed it on the counter. It was a plain cardboard box with a pink bow on top. "Lewis and I bought this for you. I guess I'll give it to you now so you can use it tomorrow."

"What is it?"

"Open it up."

Vince grinned as he pulled off the bow, "It's pink."

"Shut up."

Vince laughed as he pulled a black case from inside the box. He unlocked it and smiled as he held the violin in his hand, "You're fucking kidding."

"Happy birthday."

Vince smiled and kissed Deb on the cheek. "You do know that I don't know how to play this yet."

"But you will. You always do."

The snow was going down that December morning. Xavier clung to his coat as he waited for Matt to meet up with him in front of his hotel. He had Vince's present in his pocket. He wasn't sure if he would like it, but it was better than nothing. A long black limo stopped in front of him as he checked to see who it was.

"Are you trying to freeze yourself?"

"No. I'm waiting for a friend."

Andrew looked around, "Well that friend isn't here yet. Why are you outside?"

"He's around the block. I didn't want to bother him to go inside."

"Would you like to step in?"

Xavier looked inside the limo window. Andrew was by himself and a glass of wine. "No thanks. I think I'll freeze my ass off a little longer.

"Suit yourself. Remember, the party starts at seven o' clock. But the real party's around ten so drop by that time."

"Party? Oh shit. I completely forgot."

"You forgot?" Andrew raised his eyebrow.

"Yeah. I have this other party I'm going to. But it's early in the afternoon so I'll try to drop by later."

"You should," Andrew replied, a little disappointed.

Hotel security approached the car and looked at Andrew, "Excuse me sir. This is a no parking zone. It's drop-off are for hotel visitors only."

"We were leaving." Andrew looked back at Xavier, "I'll see you there."

Xavier nodded as Andrew rolled his window up. Xavier watched as the limo pulled away. His mind totally blanked out about Andrew's party.

"Who was that?" Matt walked up to Xavier.

"Just somebody. Do you have the money?"

"Yeah. How about the drinks?"

"I had them sent to Vince's place. We'll just get some chips and some real food then head over there."

"Kevin said we should grab a couple of Scottish sausages too."

"Doesn't he have one already?" Xavier grinned.

Matt looked confused for a second, then chuckled. "Yeah. But it wouldn't hurt to have more right?"

Vince tried playing The Four Seasons again on his violin. He'd been practicing all evening and he thought he was slowly getting it... much to Deb's dismay. All throughout the day, Deb had to suffer through all Vince's bad notes and melodies, making her regret they even gave him the violin. It didn't help that they walked around a frozen Central Park with Vince's violin in hand. Even in the elevator going up to Vince's apartment, he was still trying to master the strings.

"Can you stop that for a minute?"

"Why?" Vince asked as he purposely played another loud note.

"I swear, I'm going to break that in half if you don't stop. I don't care if it cost us a fortune. I'm going to break it on your head."

Vince laughed as the elevator doors opened. They walked up to his apartment door as Deb whispered, "Remember, you're supposed to be surprised."

"What are you talking about? We just had a fun day in Central park and we're going back to my apartment," Vince whispered. "Hold this." He handed Deb the violin and put his hands in his pockets.

"Whatever," Deb rolled her eyes. "Oh look, we're here now!" Deb shouted as she turned the knob. The room was all dark when Deb decided to flick the switch.

"Surprise!" Kevin yelled... only Kevin yelled.

"Oh look. It's a surprise party. Be surprised," Deb stated in monotone.

Vince smiled like a five year-old kid on Christmas day as he walked over to his boyfriend. "I love you." He put his arms around him and planted a kiss on his lips.

"Okay. Pass the chips!" Lewis yelled from the bar as he opened a can of beer from the kitchen.

"Were you surprised?" Kevin asked, still wrapped in Vince's arms.

"Honestly, no. But I loved the effort," Vince grinned as he kissed him again.

"Okay. I'm gonna throw up now," Deb rolled her eyes and joined her boyfriend at the bar.

Matt and Xavier were waiting quietly for the lovers to stop making out in front of them so they could greet the birthday boy, but it seemed that the tongue-sucking was going to take longer.

"Here," Deb handed both of them a plate of Scottish sausages and some gourmet fries Lewis had scored from the hotel. "Consider this a peace treaty," Deb looked at Xavier.

"For now," Xavier nodded.

"Happy birthday!" Matt cheered as Vince finally stopped locking lips with Kevin.

"Thanks!" Vince grinned as he wrapped his arm around Matt and gave him a quick peck on the cheek.

Matt blushed as he handed Vince a book. Vince flipped its pages and found that they were blank. "It's a songbook," Matt explained, "So you can write your songs there."

"Thank you," Vince smiled and hugged his friend.

"And this is from me," Xavier cut in, "Happy birthday."

Vince smiled and gave Xavier a hug, "Thanks man." He opened the box and found a silver watch. "Whoa. This is expensive."

"Don't worry about it. I didn't know what to get you so I thought this would be okay."


Kevin handed Vince a plate of Scottish sausages which made Vince laugh like a lunatic. "This and deep-fried Snickers? I feel like I'm in Scotland all of a sudden. All that's missing is me in a kilt."

"Please don't," Deb yelled from the bar as she downed a shot of Malt Whiskey.

Vince placed his food down and grabbed a bottle of wine. "Okay! Everybody shut up!" Vince walked to the center of the room and grinned. "Thank you for doing this for me. I can't say that enough. To Kevin, my lovely boyfriend, who's gonna fuck me crazy tonight," Kevin blushed, "I love you. This is amazing. You're the best bunch of people I know and I wouldn't have it any other way. So with this, let's get fucked up!"

Everybody cheered as they took a shot of alcohol. Vince downed a large gulp of red wine before setting the bottle aside. He sat down on the couch beside Kevin and kissed his boyfriend on the cheek.

Lewis was busy helping himself to Xavier's generous donation of alcohol as Matt and Xavier chatted it up on the couch. Deb decided to put on some music as she watched the merriment in the room. She heard a knock on the door and decided to see who it was.

"Hi Deb," Tyler was standing by the doorway.

"Oh shit."

"Who is it?" Vince yelled from the couch. His eyes darted to the door just as he saw a ghost from his past. Deb looked at Vince in silence. His face was pale and his eyes were still set on the door. "Excuse me for a minute."

Kevin watched as Vince walked over to Deb and saw that Tyler had arrived. Deb took it as her cue to leave as Vince and Tyler stood face to face. "What're you doing here?"

"Your boyfriend invited me."

"Kevin?" Vince looked confused as Kevin joined them at the door.

"Hey! I'm glad you came."

"You invited him?" Vince turned to Kevin.

"Yeah. I thought it would be nice to see your old gang together again."

Vince let out a sigh of frustration as covered his face with the palm of his hand. He turned to Tyler, still standing in the hall and nodded. "We need to talk."


Vince walked past Kevin to get his coat. Something was wrong, Kevin knew it. He made a mistake by inviting this guy. "Hey, where are you going?"

"You go and have fun at my surprise party. I'm just going to talk with my ex boyfriend for a bit," Vince said coldly as he closed the door on Kevin's face. The room fell silent as he felt all eyes on his back.

Matt looked around the room. Deb was still in shock while Lewis took a strong shot of gin. He turned to Xavier and whispered, "Okay? What just happened."

"Your boyfriend seems nice."

Vince kept walking down the hall and pressed the elevator button. Tyler watched him as he impatiently waited for it to come up to his floor.

"You're not gonna talk to me?"

"Let's get outside first. I don't want to cause a scene here."

"I just went to greet you a happy birthday."

"Well, you ruined it."

"You know what? This was a mistake."

"What was a mistake Tyler? Can you fucking tell me?" Vince shouted. "I did what you asked. I stayed out of your fucking life and then you come here on my birthday and try getting back into mine. What the hell is your problem?"

Deb took another drag as the shot glass shook in her fingers. Lewis was watching her carefully. She was getting nervous as Vince and Tyler's argument permeated through the door. She hated it everytime those two fought, which happened very rarely when they were kids. Vince and Tyler were thick as thieves and if ever they fought, it was always serious. Lewis counted her fourth shot; she needed the alcohol.  Deb walked over to Kevin who was leaning on the door, eyes closed, shaking his head as he eavesdropped on the mess he started.

"Why did you do that?"

"I didn't know."

"You're fucking stupid."

"Hey!" Xavier shouted from the couch.

"Stay out of this!" Deb yelled as she snapped back at Kevin, "You don't know what you just did."

"Deb, take it easy," Lewis approached them. "He doesn't know what happened."

"Am I the only sane person in this room? My god! What the hell does it take for you gay guys to learn that exes are exes for a reason. They should stay out of everyone's lives."

"He said take it easy. Kevin didn't know," Xavier yelled at Deb.

"Why the hell are you even here? You're not Vince's friend. You're just here for your stupid old boyfriend, waiting for them to break up so you can screw with him again."

"I'm not taking this shit from a drunk bitch. I'm leaving." Xavier grabbed his coat and walked to the door.

"Yeah. Leave. Don't come back." Deb yelled as Lewis tried to calm her down.

"Call me if you need to talk," Xavier whispered to Kevin as he walked out. Vince and Tyler had been long gone when he reached the hallway.

Matt just watched in silence as all hell broke loose. He had no clue of what was happening. He felt out of place as he looked around the room. Kevin was still uneasy, standing by the doorway. Deb was talking in hysterics with Lewis about the whole predicament. Matt stood up from the couch and walked over to Kevin. He placed his hand on his friend's shoulder. Kevin's face was a mix of panic, guilt, and confusion.

"Hey, do you want to sit down for a bit?"

"I'm going back to the dorm," Kevin took his own coat and walked out leaving Matt alone with Lewis and Deb, and a whole lot of lit candles, uneaten food, and a kitchen full of alcohol.

"Are you going to continue ignoring me? I went all the way across town just to talk to you and you're going to ignore me."

"I'm not ignoring you."

"Then talk to me."

"Let's see, what do we talk about... you soddin' wanker?" Vince screamed from behind the wheel, "I haven't talked to you in almost two years. You told me to never to talk to you again, not in public, not in private, no calls, not even a fucking messenger pigeon."

"Okay. I get your point... Well, I made a mistake."

"Dumb fuckin' mistake that was." Vince stopped the pick-up and pointed out the window. The glass was fogged up by the snow but Tyler could see clearly where they were.

"Why are we here?"

Vince sighed as he calmed down a bit. He looked at his old friend then back out the frosted pick-up window, "So we can talk."

Vince carefully walked up the creaking stairs. His feet were almost heavy enough to break the old planks resting on the iron bars that kept them together. Tyler was a few feet behind him careful not touch the rusty old handrail. Their old beat-up building wasn't as fancy as it was a decade before. Years of neglect and a long-forgotten demolition notice turned it into a hollow piece of real-estate: a home of rats and spiders, and a probably a couple of lucky hobos.

Vince stopped by the door of his old apartment and tried the knob. Of course, it didn't open. Years of rust had sealed it shut.

"We're trespassing here."

"That never stopped us before, has it?" Vince braced himself as knocked open the door with the force of his shoulder.

The old apartment was barren except for the thick rug of dust on its once sturdy hardwood floor, and the spider webs that served as drapes for the windows. It was freezing inside as the winter breeze slipped through the cracks of a broken window in the old kitchen. Vince walked to the center of his old living room and looked at the damage time left. He remembered the couch which he and Tyler used to jump on, the old wooden table his mum served dinners for the four of them: Vince, Tyler, Deb and Lewis.

"Are you ready to talk?"

Vince turned around and looked at his old friend, "Go ahead."

"You know, I tried rehearsing what I wanted to say when I got to your apartment... I honestly thought you were okay with it. I guess your boyfriend doesn't know."

Vince sighed and nodded in silence.

Tyler took this as a yes and continued, "We made stupid mistakes in the past."

"We?" Vince butt in.

"Okay. I did. You don't know how it killed me to push you away... but I had to do it."

"I know. You told me... It killed me too, you know? I was your best friend and you dropped me just like that."

"But you have to understand--"

"Milo." Vince cut him mid sentence. "How is the little tyke?"

"He turned two the other day," Tyler smiled.

"And the whore?"

Tyler sighed, "She's fine."

"How can you live with yourself knowing that you don't love her and that you're only staying in it because of your kid?"

"You don't have to rub it in."

"So you don't love her?"

"I didn't have a choice Vince."

"You did." Vince looked at him straight in the eye. "You could either choose her, or me. You chose her. She was my fucking ex-girlfriend for crying out loud! The slut of the school. What were you thinking?"

"I wasn't, okay? We talked about this."

"Then why her?" Vince raised his voice as it started to crack, "Why didn't you choose me? I was better than her. I still am."

"I was confused. I didn't know who I was back then. What we did wasn't... it was... I didn't know what it was. We've been friends for so long that I thought it was okay to do it. We were two friends, experimenting."

"Tell me you didn't feel anything."

"I thought I was but then she told me she was pregnant." Tyler stopped, "I was going to be a dad Vince. I couldn't live my life knowing that I had a kid I couldn't take care of. What would my kid think if I abandoned him over some... over you?"

"I could've been there for you. You know what sucks even more? You left me out. You chose Lew and Deb to be your son's godparents. You cut me out of your life."

"I had to do it. I couldn't stand being with you and the way you made me feel... It was wrong."

"Wrong?" Vince shouted.

"No. I didn't mean that. I meant that I loved you... that's why I needed to be away from you. I needed to forget you so I can focus on my son. You don't know what it felt like for me to finally see him. I knew I had to do it. I had to forget you. That was the hardest thing I had to do. We've been friends since we were seven. It was impossible, but I had to do it. I had to love him more than I loved you." Tyler could see it, for the first time in their friendship, he saw the tears in Vince's eyes. He was always the strong one. He was always the one with the smile, but for the first time he saw him tear up.

"I don't even know why we're even having this conversation again," Vince shook his head as he looked up at the dusty old ceiling, "I already know the answers to them. I just want to know one thing... why now?"

"Because no matter how hard I try, I still miss my best friend."

That did it. Vince's tears fell as he hid his eyes in the palm of his hand. He felt Tyler's arms wrap around him. His hands gently comforting him. Vince couldn't control it as he wept and gripped him tighter. All the pain of rejection came surging back. All of those repressed memories came back. He just let it out. Tyler waited for Vince's sobs to subside before pulling back. Vince forced a grin on his now rosy face.

Tyler smiled back at him and greeted him, "Happy birthday."

Vince grinned, "You are a piece of work Mr. Lockhart."

"Well you are too Mr. Morris."

"Fuck this drama." Vince sighed as he got back his composure. "I still want to kill you though."

"Go right ahead. We're in an abandoned building. No one will know, but I'm very sure that I'll beat you to it and kill you first."

"Ha! You've never won anything in you life."

"Well I bet you haven't seen me play Left 4 Dead yet."

Both of them laughed for a brief minute. As the old place fell silent again except for the whistling wind through the cracks.

"Let's just get this clear," Vince cleared his throat, "The fact that I'm forgiving you right now doesn't mean we'll go back to being the best of friends. That's over."

"I had a feeling you'd say that... but it's okay if we stay friends, right?"

"I'd like that... but just friends. You know how weird it was to share Lew and Deb with you?"

"Yeah. It's weird. They tell me stuff about you, you know?"

"Likewise. Of course, I have to ask them from time to time. I love them both... except for Deb. There are time that girl goes all loony."

"She's been crazy since she shaved her hair."

The two of them shared another laugh.

"I missed talking to you."

"Same here," Vince grinned.

"Wow," Tyler looked at the crumbling ceiling, "This place is a mess." He started walking into Vince's room as Vince followed him from behind. Even though the space was empty, everything looked a lot smaller. Vince remembered his bed, sitting exactly in one corner of the room. It was a small bed, but he and Tyler could fit on it perfectly, even when they were in high school. It was the very same bed they started experimenting with each other... several times.

"Everything looks different," Tyler noted. "I missed this room. It felt like this was my real room and the one I had was just for show."

Vince grinned. "Let's check out your old room."

"Nah. I don't even want to go there... too many bad memories."

Vince and Tyler looked blankly at the empty corner in silence. "I'm sorry about your dad."

"Lew told you huh?"


"Good riddance. After what he did to my mom, he deserved it."

"At least you're a better dad. Sticking with that slut for your kid is sacrifice."

"She's not a slut." Tyler defended her wife.

Vince just shrugged his shoulders.

"Okay, she was," Tyler smiled, "But she's changed now. Milo changed us. Having a kid makes you different."

"I bet it does."

The two looked around Vince's room for a little longer, quietly reliving the good times they had in their heads.

"Hey, I wanna give you something. Would you mind driving me to the apartment?"

"Yeah. Sure."

Matt turned the key and walked in. It was still early in the afternoon but their room was pitch black. Kevin had closed the blinds. Matt felt around for the switch with his fingers and clicked it open. Kevin was lying in bed, staring quietly at the ceiling. Matt noticed he hadn't changed his clothes yet since he left the party. He took off his coat and walked over to Kevin's bed. "Dude, are you okay?"

"Did everybody leave already?"

"I left Lewis and Deb at Vince's. Deb started going nuts. What happened back there?"

"I screwed up Matty. I invited Tyler over."

"So that's why she kept talking about Tyler."

"What did she say?"

"Well she started blaming you for screwing the party up. But then she started rambling about Vince and how childish he was about the whole Tyler thing. I couldn't really understand anything once she started slurring her words.

"I knew it was a bad idea... I just thought he'd be happy to see his old friend."

"Just like the way Xavier got back into your life?"

"Honestly, that didn't even cross my mind," Kevin let out a frustrated sigh as he turned over to stomach and covered his head with a pillow.

"He looked pissed when he left."

"Don't remind me."

"What do you think happened between them?"

"I don't know," Kevin flung his pillow aside. "I don't know a lot about Vince. I don't know what cake he likes. I don't know stuff about his past. What sucks more is that he knows almost everything about me... even what I'm thinking. Does that make me a bad boyfriend?"

"I don't know. I've never been a relationship."

Kevin shook his head as he covered his face with his pillow again.

"Have you tried calling him?"


"Why don't you?"

"He's with Tyler. I don't want to piss him off even more."

"I know Vince. He's not the kind of guy who gets mad, right? You've never seen him mad before, right? Just this once?"

"Yeah. Would you mind stopping with the questions?"


Matt decided to follow suit and lie down with all his clothes on as well. He had a lot of things on his mind, and what happened at Vince's party was the least of his problems. Even though finals were over, he couldn't exactly breathe a sigh of relief knowing what a whirlwind that semester brought him. He went into college optimistic and happy, with the prospect of being away from his parents... then he came out, something that shocked even himself. He thought his problems would be over by admitting it to himself, but it proved to be the beginning of even more problems.

Matt could hear the sounds of the city outside and a couple of noisy people walking along the hallway outside their room. He had remembered the letter that was still sitting on his table. 'Now or never,' he convinced himself as he stood up and ripped the envelope open. He pulled out the piece of paper and started reading through Keegan's messy handwriting. It was a long apology, something Matt had already devised in his fantasies. Over past days he wished that Keegan would apologize for being a jerk and would come running back to him. He'd be on bended knee, pleading to be forgiven... and Matt would forgive him, and they'd finally do it for the first time, as a couple. But that didn't happen.

There's was nothing new in the letter, just a more detailed description of everything Keegan said at the diner. Even though he knew it was over, Matt felt good to actually have it written down for him, even to the very last period of the very last sentence. It was done. At least he knew he was sincere enough to take the time to write it down. Keegan left an address and his cellphone number at the bottom of the letter just in case Matt had decided to delete it from his phonebook. He tucked the letter back in the envelope and placed it inside his desk drawer.

Matt looked at Kevin, who seemed to have fallen asleep with his head under his pillow. He noticed Kevin's phone vibrating on his bed so he decided to wake Kevin up.

"What is it?"

Matt handed Kevin his phone.

"Hey. Where are you?"

"I'm at Tyler's place right now. Are you still at the party?"

"No. I left a couple of hours ago."

"I'm sorry about storming off. I have to confess, you got me there... I was surprised."

"You scared me. I thought you were pissed."

"I'm sorry about that. I was caught off guard. Are you back at the dorm?"

"Yeah. I'm with Matty."

"Great. I'll pick you guys up in an hour. I still need to celebrate my birthday right."

"Okay," Kevin smiled, a weight just got pulled off his back. "I love you."

"I love you too," Vince smiled as he ended the call.

Tyler walked out his room and handed Vince his present. Vince's jaw dropped when he saw the fragile thing in Tyler's hand. "You're giving it back?"

"Yeah. Well it isn't really mine. I gave it you, remember?"

Vince held the ukulele in his hands and strummed it. It still sounded the same way they very first time he held it many years ago.

"I want you to have it again."

"I thought it was broken," Vince let his fingers touch the strings as he started playing a short melody while they talked.

"I had it fixed... I still can't believe you threw it at me."

Vince grinned as he stopped playing, "You were lucky I missed. You just don't go saying that I'm worthless and disgusting and live to tell about it. I mean, I could've been fine with just the news that you were getting married... but no, you had to say that I should fuck off as well."

"Yeah... Like I said, I'm sorry."

"Here," Vince handed the ukulele back to Tyler. "Why don't you keep it? Give it to your son. Little Milo might turn out to be a musical prodigy like me."

Tyler laughed, "You're still an arrogant son of a bitch. Are you sure you don't want it?"

"Consider it as my birthday present to your son."

"Thanks," Tyler smiled. "He'll love this."

Vince checked the time, "I have to go. I need to pick Kevin up."

"You have a good boyfriend."

"I know," Vince grinned, "Are you jealous?"

"A little bit," Tyler smiled. "Happy birthday."


Vince and Tyler shared a brief hug before they walked to the door. "Well... I guess I'll be seeing you around then? Happy holidays."

"You too."

Xavier put on a clean shirt and looked at himself in the mirror. He burst into a smile. Matt was right, he did look a bit like the young prince. He put on his cap, but then quickly decided that he was going without it. He heard his cellphone ringing and answered the call.

"Do you have plans tonight?"

"Unfortunately, yes."

"Well that's shite."


"I was supposed to pick you up as well. I'm taking Kev and Matty to the pub with me."

"I can't. I have to go to this other party... Are you okay? You looked pissed when you stormed out out of the party."

"It's a long story. I'll fill you all in when I have the time. Thanks for coming, by the way."

"It was my pleasure. Happy birthday again."

"Cheers!" Vince ended the call and put his phone aside. He parked the pick up right outside Kevin's building. He walked into the hall and decided to take the stairs up this time. He was feeling light. Kevin did a big thing for him. It was a risk on Kevin's part, but it paid off. He jogged up the hallway and knocked on Kevin's door. Vince tapped his foot excitedly as Matt opened it for him.

"Hey. How did it go?" Matt asked as Vince walked past him.

Kevin was taken by surprise as Vince planted his lips on his. Vince held his head in his hands as their tongues met. The heat of Vince's mouth felt good. Kevin moved his hands on Vince's back as he felt Vince's lips press harder against his. Matt stood by the doorway in awkward silence as he tried to keep his eyes off the lovers sucking faces in the middle of their room.

Matt feigned a cough as Vince pulled away and looked over his direction. "Awww, Matty do you want a kiss too?" Vince joked before turning back to Kevin, "Let's go."

Kevin grabbed his coat and followed Vince out the door. Just as Vince walked out, he gave Matt a quick peck on the cheek and winked at him. Kevin just smiled as he saw Matt's face flush red. Matt just shook his head and locked the door behind them.

The club was packed with ravers who were all moving their bodies to the flashing lights and loud music. Random people brushed against Xavier as he squeezed through the crowd. He was pretty sure some random shirtless guy pinched his butt as he looked for a way up the VIP room. A bouncer was standing by the stairway and he showed him the text message Andrew sent. He walked up the winding stairs and moved a couple drapes aside as he walked into the VIP lounge. He saw a few people he didn't know having a few laughs over drinks at the private bar. There were two ladies shooting up at the adjacent table. He felt an arm wrap around him as the woman whispered, "It's the first time I saw you here. Do you want me to ride?"

Xavier quickly took her arm off him and looked at her in shock. She was scantily clad and obviously intoxicated.

"He's off limits."

Xavier turned around to see Andrew sitting on one of the lounge chairs with an equally intoxicated woman on his lap.

"You came," Andrew smirked as he told the girl to get off him. He stood up and walked towards Xavier, his eternal smirk still etched across his face.

"You invited me."

"Would you like a drink?"


Both of them walked over to the bar as Andrew ordered something called 'the Brew.' Xavier looked out the balcony to see the ravers going at it to the sounds being spun by the DJ. The guy was god and all the dancing ravers were his minions.

"Here, take a sip."

Xavier examined the yellow concoction that looked a lot like smoking piss, "What is this stuff?"

"Try it. You'll love it," Andrew smirked again, his shrew stare locked on Xavier.

Xavier took the drink in his hand and looked at it with apprehension. With one quick swig, he felt its cold liquid burn flow down his throat. He felt his face getting hot, but nevertheless, he felt pumped. "Shit."

Andrew smiled. "Good?"

"Yeah." Xavier smiled as he took another sip.

"Come with me." Andrew led Xavier to a more private room with a bunch of people sharing laughs and empty chitchat. They walked across the room to a corner lounge packed with a handful of people.

"Ladies and gentlemen, this is Xavier Thomas. His father is the owner and CEO of Trium Industries. He's currently residing here for the time being."

Xavier felt these strangers' eyes fixed on him as Andrew introduced him to his socialite friends one by one. The ladies flashed him a couple of smiles and condescending stares, while the guys took the time to nod or actually shake his hand.

"Finally, this guy right here is--"

"Henry Carlyle III," he stood up and shook Xavier's hand.

"We call him Dirty Harry," Andrew whispered just low enough for everyone to still hear and laugh about it.

"Why Dirty Harry?" Xavier asked.

"You'll find out if you stick around," Andrew smirked. "Why don't you sit down for a while? I just have something to take care of."

Xavier sat down beside Harry and watched as Andrew approached a high school kid who seemed to have slipped passed the bouncers, "Who's that?"

"That... is Hadji Connors." Harry smiled as he took a sip from his brew. "He's our little toy."

"Toy?" Xavier asked, a bit confused, "Do they allow minors in here?"

"He's Andrew's guest of honor. He threw this party just for him."


Harry smiled as he pointed to the angry young woman walking towards Andrew. They could hear her screaming at the top of her lungs as she slapped Andrew right across the face. The people sitting beside Xavier cheered at the spectacle as the woman dragged Hadji away the VIP area. Andrew still had a smirk on as he walked towards them.

"Congratulations. You just made a fool out of yourself again," Harry laughed.

"It's just a minor setback. She'll come running to me very soon."

"Who was that?" Xavier asked again, a little more confused this time.

"Nadia Connors, Hadji's older sister. She's Andrew's latest project."


"I don't think Mr. Thomas here would like to know about that right now," Andrew cut in as he took Xavier's empty glass away from him, "Would you like another drink?"

"No thanks. I'm good... Uh, can we talk for a second?"


"In private."

Andrew saw the seriousness in Xavier's eyes as he led him to a quiet little nook in the lounge. "So, what do you want to talk to me about?"

"My dad is rejecting your dad's proposal."

"I don't do business at parties."

"This is important."

"And I don't care. Let your father deal with my father. As of now, I'm here to enjoy my night, and I hope you do as well. Andrew took out a small case from his pocket and popped out two pills. He took one and set it on his tongue and swallowed it right before Xavier's eyes. He offered the other one to him. Xavier just looked at the pale pink tablet in front of him and decided, "No. I don't do drugs."

"Come on. Live a little."

"I think I need to go."

"You don't want to do that."


"Because... the moment you step out the door, you'll regret it. You're one of us, Xavier. I need you here... You're like us."

"I'm not like any of you spoiled trust fund kids. I'm going."

"Fine. Don't say I didn't warn you."

"Is that a threat?"


Xavier turned around and headed for the exit. Andrew kept his eyes on him. He meant what he said. He needed him.

"How did it go?"

"It went well, thank you." Vince grinned as he gripped Kevin's hand on the table.

"So that means you're friends again?"

"Yep. But I don't think I'll hang out with him like I used to. He's married to that bitch now. I can't stand her."


"My ex-girlfriend, the one I talked to you about."


"It's good to know that we're on speaking terms again. But I guess it's different this time. I don't feel anything for him anymore. He's just a friend and will only be just another friend of mine. He's a changed man."

Matt came back from the bar with three beers in hand. He handed Vince and Kevin one each. "I'd like to propose a toast," he beamed. "To Vince."

Kevin and Vince looked at each other, waiting for Matt to add something. "That's it?" Vince asked.

"Well... yeah."

"Okay then. Cheers!" Vince grinned as they clinked bottles.

The woman at the karaoke ended her song with whistles and applause from the audience. The host went back on stage to call on the next performer in the sign-up sheet. Vince leaned over towards Kevin and whispered, "You know what would make me really happy tonight?"

"What?" Kevin asked as the spotlight fell on him.

"And to sing for us next... Mr. Kevin Stanford."

"Oh my god! You didn't!" Kevin looked at Vince in horror.

"I did," Vince grinned.

"I'm gonna kill you."

"Come up on stage Kevin," the host announced.

"Oh my god," Kevin repeated to himself as he looked around the bar. People were waiting for him to come up on stage. "I don't even know what song I'm singing."

"You can wing it," Vince winked.

Kevin was shaking as he walked on stage. He felt the heat of his body move up to his face. He knew he was probably red from embarrassment, but the harsh spotlight didn't make it obvious. Then, he heard the music start to play. "Oh my god. Is this serious?" Kevin nervously spoke in the microphone as the audience laughed. The lyrics flashed on screen as he started to sing... or at least tried to.

You are my fire the one desire
Believe when I say I want it that way

Kevin was shaking his head in embarrassment as the crowd began to cheer at his off notes. Vince started whistling as Matt chuckled noisily in his seat.

But we are two worlds apart can't reach to your heart
When you say that I want it that way

Kevin felt awkward, but sang the song nonetheless. The crowd continued cheering as some started to sing along in their seats.

Tell me why ain't nothin' but a heartache
Tell me why ain't nothin' but a mistake
Tell me why I never wanna hear you say
I want it that way

Xavier closed the door to his suite as he flicked the light on. He was a bit drowsy from that cocktail they gave him. He had had his fair share of alcohol but that drink was different. He pulled off his coat and tossed it aside. He went to the kitchen to get himself a glass of water.

'That was a mistake,' Xavier thought as he reviewed the night in his head. It was high school all over again, but this time, the spoiled brats were actually richer and probably more evil. His body felt hot. Whatever was in that brew was strong, really strong. He put his glass down and pulled off his shirt and tossed it aside. He felt the heat spreading through his body. He needed to move, and move around. He took another sip of water when he heard someone at the door.

He quickly paced towards it and looked at the peephole. Andrew was at the doorway, wearing a pair of dark shades, with a bottle of wine in his hand. Xavier licked his lips and thought about it for a second before opening the door.

"Hi," Andrew took off his shades. "I'm sorry about what I said at the club. I brought you this as a peace offering."

Xavier snatched the bottle from Andrew's hands and flung it aside, breaking it on impact. He pulled Andrew by the collar, dragged him inside, and slammed the door. He pinned him to door and watched Andrew's lips twitch to form a knowing smirk. Xavier punched him on the side of his face as he fell to the floor. Again, he grabbed him by the collar and pinned him to the door. A very evident bruise showed up in Andrew's cheek as they both smiled. Xavier pressed his lips against Andrew's as he started pulling away his coat. Xavier could feel Andrew's fingers dig deep into his back as he moved his hands up. Xavier broke away and forced Andrew's buttoned shirt open. Andrew pushed Xavier to the floor and threw it aside. "Do you want me?"

"No," Xavier smiled, the drugs in his drink were taking full effect.

"Good." Andrew picked him up and pushed him face-first against the hotel room's full length window. He pulled Xavier's pants down and revealed his bare ass. Andrew gripped his chest from behind and bit him lightly on the neck, just enough to leave his mark. Xavier moaned as he felt Andrew grip his already rigid cock and stroked it as he kissed his neck.

Andrew's hands moved down to Xavier's back and began kneading his butt. Xavier heard Andrew's pants hit the floor as he felt the hard tool grazing along his crack. He felt Andrew's tongue on his neck as he forced himself inside his hole. Xavier moaned as his palms lay flat on the glass. Andrew thrust himself in inch by inch. He used Xavier's cock as leverage, tugging on it as he fucked him, forcefully moving in and out. Xavier winced at the feeling he was giving him. He could feel the heat pulsing through his veins, moving steadily down his cock. He moaned as he let his face rest on the window. Little did he know that someone was watching them very closely.

"I'm gonna kill you," Kevin said as he sat down, his face still very red from his impromptu performance.

"I love you," Vince kissed him on the cheek, "The crowd loved it especially when you tried doing those cheesy Nick Carter hand movements. You just made me a very happy man tonight."

Kevin playfully punched Vince in the arm, glad that the whole thing was over.

"The Backstreet Boys? I didn't know you were a fan," Matt looked at Vince.

"I like pop sometimes. And that song was perfect for you," Vince grinned at Kevin.

"Oh, was it?" Kevin raised his eyebrow, "Well you better bend over tonight because I'm gonna take sweet revenge on your ass."

"Careful, Kev. We have virgin ears on the table."

"What?" Matt looked at Vince as all three of them laughed.

Vince's phone started vibrating in his pocket. "Excuse me. I have to take this one." He stood up and left the roommates to themselves.

"So... since you're leaving me next year, I need to look for a new roomie."

"Well, they usually assign it, right?" Kevin grimaced as he took a sip of beer. He still hated its taste in his mouth.

"Yeah. But we could always write a notice that we want to be roommates again. It just sucks that I need to start over."

"Don't worry. I'm pretty sure the new guy will be fine."

"He might be, but he's not you," Matt took a gulp of his beer.

"What does that mean?"

Kevin was taken by surprise when Matt lunged forward and kissed him in public. "What the hell? Matty!"

"I'm sorry. I just had to do it," he smiled, licking his lips.

"You're drunk."

"No. I just had one beer. I figured that if you're going away next semester, it might as well be now or never."

"Well you could've at least done it in private. Wait... no! I'm taken... You can't just kiss me when you want to," Kevin whispered, thankful that only a few people noticed what Matt did.

"It was just a harmless kiss. Vince kissed me."

"Well that was nothing and I was aware of it."

"Sheesh. Why are you making a big deal out of it?"

Kevin smirked, "Who are you and what have you done with Matty?"

"I don't know buddy," Matt chuckled as he downed his beer.

Vince was right outside the club as he held the phone to his ear. He was standing with a grin on his face, "You do know that I've been waitin' for you to call me all day. I thought you'd forgotten all 'bout your son's birthday. How are you doing there?"

Vince paced the sidewalk as the line started getting choppy, "Mum? Wait, are you crying? Mum? Calm down. What's wrong?"