In Due Time
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Warning: This work of fiction contains sexual contact between two males. If you are opposed to reading something like that, or if it is illegal for you to read this type of material in your area, please leave.
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Sundays are always bad. You spend the night before up way too late and by the time you wake up on Sunday; it's already too late to actually enjoy the day. You have to spend what little time you do have on the homework you've been neglecting all weekend and when that's done, you lay in bed trying to make yourself go to sleep for school the next day.
At least, that's how Sundays are for me.
Most Sundays. Apparently, I was actually looking forward to this particular day or something because I woke up at ten in the morning. That's like, a record for me on the weekend. I hate mornings and I always put off leaving my bed for as long as possible.
I woke up smiling. Fucking smiling. I didn't think I'd ever woken up smiling before, but I was thinking of him, the second I opened my eyes, and something inside me swelled. I took a breath and it felt better than it ever had before. It was strange and new and something that I could definitely get used to. I'd never taken pleasure out of simply breathing before.
I wanted to see him again. I actually tried to be horrified by that thought. Tried to hate myself for it. Tried to tell myself to stop thinking about him, but nothing worked and when I walked downstairs with a smile on my face, the vein in my mother's forehead bulged like I'd never seen it before.
"Uhm," I said, stepping back out of the kitchen before I'd even fully entered it. "I cleaned my room, and now I'm gonna go...clean something else. I'm grounded, right?" She didn't answer. Just glared and I took another step back. "Right. Grounded. Sounds good."
Her eyes widened further, so I finally shut up and ran. Literally. Right out the back door, but not before shouting that I wouldn't leave the house.
I mowed the lawn. Yeah, I'd totally already done that, like three days ago, but I couldn't leave the house and I needed to do something. I couldn't sit still. I had a lot of energy and I didn't know what to do with any of it and if I couldn't calm down a little when the lawn was finished, I fully intended to suck up and kiss as much ass as it would take for my mom to let me go across to Chloe's to use the pool.
It was just...good. I mean, I would have sworn that when I woke up that morning, I was going to be freaking out and trying to figure out a way to get Shane away from me and keep him away. But I wasn't.
I was trying to figure out how I could get to see him again without pushing my mother into sending me off to some boot camp or something. Just...everything felt so good. And I felt...different. Better.
I mean, yeah, I still had to worry about keeping it secret, and I'd still have to be careful around my friends...but when it was just me and Shane alone...it could be okay. I could let myself feel...everything. I mean, I knew it wouldn't work forever and...but maybe for a little while I could forget about what was and wasn't normal and just...everything could be good.
And I wouldn't have to lose my friends either. I could have them both. My family and Shane. Maybe.
I was kind of lost in thought so I kind of almost shit myself when Shane tapped my shoulder.
"Holy fucking shit!" I screamed and the lawn mower went dead as I let go of it.
"Language," Shane scolded, mockingly. "Your mother's inside. She sent me out here. She said to tell you, you're not grounded, but you two are going to have a `talk' later. Sucks to be you, bro."
"Yeah," I nodded. I would rather have been grounded.
So, here's the thing. I had no idea what to say. And I was sort of terrified that he'd touch me or something. Not that I had a problem with that or anything, not when we were alone, behind a locked door. I wouldn't freak if he did it, then. But outside of my house where any of the people I wanted to keep my little secret from most could see us, I definitely had a problem with it. And I had no idea what I would do if he tried anything.
He was gay. And he seemed to be completely okay with that. So, it didn't seem that far fetched to think he might try something. Like kiss me or touch me or something like that.
But he didn't.
He just laughed at me when I took a few steps away and shook his head. "You're paranoid. But I sorta knew that. So, you wanna go inside? You mom was cooking and I'm all over taking advantage of my excellent timing, if that's cool..."
I hesitated. Mostly because I didn't think he was serious, especially since all I could think about was tasting his lips and having his hands in the most inappropriate places possible. Yeah, I know I was just saying how scared I was that he might touch me. I'm a complicated guy.
"You wanna have breakfast?" I asked skeptically. "With my mother?"
Shane laughed again. "Yeah," he said. "If it's cool. My family rushed off to church and I kind of have to fend for myself. We're out of cereal at my house and that's the only breakfast food I know how to cook so..."
"So, you decided to mooch off us?" I finished for him, smiling, for no apparent reason. Except, Shane has a dimple in just one of his cheeks when he smiles and it's kind of cool to look at.
"Yeah," Shane agreed, nodding. "But if it's not cool--,"
"No," I interrupted immediately. "It's cool. I'm game. I could eat."
Then he did touch me. He reached out and grabbed my hand. Not to hold. Just a slight tug in the direction of my house, his middle finger brushing the palm of my hand before he let go.
And just that small amount of touching was enough to make the swelling, hard to breathe feeling come back. No inappropriate touching or tasting necessary.
Yes, breakfast with my mom and Shane was sort of a terrifying thought. But it wasn't as bad as I thought it'd be and I didn't really have time to think about it with the way Shane made me go a little blank every time he smiled at me. My mother and Shane seemed to be doing fine with conversation without me contributing so I was happy to sit by and eat my omelet without adding anything other than the occasional monosyllabic grunt.
That is, until my mother decided to start in with her insane questions. I almost missed it.
"...been doing with my son?"
Choking on an omelet is messy. And it's embarrassing. There were tiny egg particles everywhere.
"Mom," I snapped, eyes watering. "What--,"
"Oh, hush, Jake," she responded rolling her eyes. "That coach of yours does overwork you kids, in my opinion." She turned back to Shane. "Not that either of my boys will say anything about it."
Relief doesn't even come close to what I was feeling. I felt like I'd just fallen off a cliff and found that the ground was really only two feet beneath me instead of the thousands I was expecting.
"I just don't understand what you all could possibly be practicing for two hours, three days a week. I'll find out what that coach of yours has been doing with you," my mother continued, mostly talking to herself. "Roger is impossible though."
"Roger?" Shane and I chorused.
"Your coach," my mother said, frowning. "Horrible man."
"Coach is alright," Shane responded awkwardly. He'd finished his omelet. Which meant it was time to run away as quick as possible. "We run drills and work out some. It's mostly fun. Coach just likes to pretend he's a hard ass--um...I mean he likes to pretend he's as hard core as the football coach."
"We'll see," my mother said, thoughtfully. "I wonder if it might be possible for me to sit in on one of these practices."
"Psycho," I coughed, dropping my fork. Seriously, I had no idea what had gotten into my mother. She used to be one of those moms that smiled when she saw you, but looked at you like she wasn't sure if she remembered you name. I missed that. That was what I was used to. My mother had never been the overprotective type before she went out and found that church group. Or maybe it was the book club.
Whatever. One of them was making her neurotic.
My mother was glaring at me because the cough and the noise from my fork did not cover up what I'd said. I hadn't expected it to, but I was hoping she'd take it as a joke.
"Jake," Shane said abruptly. "You said you'd help me with chemistry?"
Oh, he was so lying and I started laughing. One, I didn't take Chemistry. Two, there's no way my mother would ever believe I was helping someone else with their homework. Chloe tutored both me and Ryan. And by `tutor', I mean, we studied with her and hoped to catch a good enough look at her homework to be able to get the answers for ours. I learned what the rest of the class learned doing homework when we went over it in class.
Apparently, though, my mom didn't know I didn't take chemistry, which is a lot more like her than sitting in on practices is, and she seemed thrilled to hear that I was helping someone else out. She beamed at me proudly and excused us, immediately.
"I don't take Chemistry," I informed Shane as we entered my room.
He grinned at me. "I thought I was the only one that took it last year," he said and I was actually a little sad that I had to disappoint him.
"I haven't taken it yet," I said, shrugging. "I took IPC, freshman year, I'm doing Bio this year, and for my third and final pick, I'll take whatever's easiest of the science classes they offer and thank my lucky stars I only need three science credits to graduate."
He laughed. "Slacker," he said, rolling his eyes.
I snorted. "Don't knock it, slacking is an art form. Anyway, it's better than being an overachiever."
"Whatever," Shane said and then spotted the books lying out on my bed. "Do you really have homework? I could go...or I could help. I finished all mine during study hall on Friday."
"Loser," I said, shaking my head. What a waste of a good sleeping hour. "And no, I don't want to do homework. Those are just there for when Ry and Chloe come over later."
Shane nodded. "Sorry," he said. "I didn't know you had plans."
"I don't," I said and continued when Shane looked pointedly at the books covering my bed. "I don't," I insisted. "They're coming over later, they do every Sunday. But Ry has community service right now and Chloe's...avoiding my mother. I don't have any plans right now."
"Oh," Shane said grinning at me. And I had a feeling that maybe he was finally thinking of the inappropriate touching we could be doing. Which I was okay with as long as we could lock my door. "What about your brother?"
"What?" I asked, more confused than I'd ever been around Shane. I mean, he said a lot of strange things I couldn't figure out, but I knew for sure that I was an only child and I had no idea where he would have gotten the idea that I wasn't.
"Your brother," Shane repeated. "Your mom mentioned `her boys'. Plural."
"Oh," I nodded. "She meant Ry. He...share's mine and Chloe's parents. His dad is way weird."
"Right," Shane said, brow furrowed. "He's a weird kid." I grinned, but didn't mention that Ry pretty much thought the same about him.
"So," Shane said fidgeting with absolutely nothing. "Wanna...uhm..."
I laughed. "You could lock my door," I said, surprising myself. "Just in case I was wrong about not having a brother."
Shane grinned, and actually blushed. I liked that it was him blushing for once. That it was me making him blush.
"Alright," he said, and he strolled over to the door to do exactly what I told him.
It's way too hard to concentrate on making out when your mother is downstairs making a shit load of noise. And every noise she made sounded like it was getting closer and closer to my room. It got to the point where Shane and I weren't even making out anymore. I was just jumping away from him at the slightest noise and he'd laugh at me for it before pulling me back in. Only to have me pull away a second later.
He seemed to think it was funny. I was terrified that one of those noises was going to be Ry. Once I even swore that my doorknob was being twisted. And yeah, my door was locked, but Ry had figured out how to unlock the damn thing after the third time I tried to hide from him during a fight.
"Would it make you feel better if we locked the windows?" he asked, sounding amused after about the tenth time I pulled away from him.
"The windows are locked," I said frowning. God, I'm such a fucking pathetic loser.
"So," Shane said, grabbing my shoulder and shaking. "What's up? Would you rather...not?"
See, I know everything was cool when we were talking about it the night before, but I wasn't thinking then. I was still okay with the kissing. I felt like I'd never get enough of it, but I wasn't sure I could talk about it. It felt weird. Like, I liked doing it and everything, but I didn't want to actually acknowledge anything. I just couldn't and the panic that I was trying to feel that morning resurfaced.
But only for a minute.
"Hey," Shane said suddenly. "I can go. I just thought..."
Words are way overrated. I wasn't good at using them, and I hated even hearing them most the time. Right then, I just wasn't interested in words so I leaned in to get more of his lips, determined to ignore everything else.
But he wouldn't let me.
"Jake," he said, frustrated. "Seriously, what's up? I don't...I don't get you on your best days."
Well, that really made two of us. "It's nothing," I responded shrugging. "I just...I'm not like you. I don't...I don't know. And I really don't want anyone to walk in. I mean," I said, thinking of Ryan. "I know my door's locked but Ryan..."
"Ryan," Shane said, eyes widening. "What about him? I thought you guys were like..."
"That lock isn't going to stop him," I interrupted, shrugging helplessly. "And I just...you're right; I don't want to talk about it. I don't even want to think about it, but I can't stop and then I like thinking about it and I like doing it and I just...don't want to. And no one can know because there won't be anyone left if they do"
Shane just stared at me. And he wasn't laughing anymore. I went back over everything that I'd just said, trying to find something that might have been taken the wrong way, but I really couldn't find anything.
"I'm sorry," Shane said, shaking his head. "What the hell did you just say? I mean...I thought those words made sense. Until you put them together."
"What?" I asked, confused.
"What?" Shane asked, no less confused than I was.
I had no idea what we were talking about anymore. For once, Shane seemed to be right there with me.
He laughed a little and shook his head. "You're...different," he said, turning to meet my eyes. "Making out is not supposed to be the complicated part."
Yeah, I totally spent the whole day thinking the words but hearing him say `making out' aloud made me blush.
Oh yeah, I'm totally that lame.
"I just don't want anyone to know," I said and I meant it. Things would be so much less complicated if I could have just made it go away. The feelings. But they stuck and Shane wouldn't let up. If I couldn't make it go away the best I could do was keep it secret until I could figure out how to get rid of it.
Or not. It's strange but I didn't like that thought anymore. Not if it meant getting rid of Shane and the kissing. The smells. The way he looked at me. I wanted to keep that.
Impossible, I know. I'd gotten myself into an impossible situation and I had no idea which way to go to get out of it.
And then, right in the middle of my panic, Shane kissed me again. Just briefly and said, "I'm not exactly about to broadcast anything over the morning announcements. I mean, I think mostly everyone knows about me, but I get it okay? If you're not ready to come out, it's cool."
I was still reeling a little from the surprise kiss but I definitely heard the words `come out'. I didn't like them at all, even if I wasn't entirely sure what they meant.
"I'm glad you get it," I said, leaning into him. He put an arm around me. It was such a small gesture. I mean, he'd had his hands almost all over me. Never under my clothes, but still. It was...a lot, for me at least. But having his arm around me felt like more. It felt good and when my mom made a noise that sounded like it came from right outside my door, I didn't move an inch.
"If you want to, like, cool it," Shane said, his voice muffled in the top of my head. "That's cool too."
"I like this," I responded, throwing my head back, almost banging it against his chin. "I just...don't want to like it."
"You're kind of intense, you know that," Shane laughed. "But I like you anyway."
Okay, so, I totally knew that. Hearing it was a whole different story.
"Girl," I said, snorting.
"Queer," he shot back. I know he was just kidding. He laughed when he said it and it was obvious he didn't mean anything by it. But I still froze.
"I'm sorry," he said, honestly, running a hand up and down my arm. "I was kidding."
"Yeah," I said, tense. "I know."
Shane sighed. "It's possible that this whole thing--whatever it is--is a bad idea."
I shrugged. "I have a shit load of bad ideas," I said. The swimming disaster came to mind. I sincerely hoped that this bad idea would end differently.
"Me too," Shane said, pulling me in tighter. "I've got one right now."
"Yeah?" I said turning to face him.
"Yeah," he answered softly. And he kissed me.
As bad ideas go, I kind of liked that one.
I hate secrets. I'm terrible at keeping them. Or, if they're my secrets, I'm terrible at keeping them. Ry and Chloe have told me more secrets than I can remember and I've yet to let them slip over breakfast with my mother the way I did after I tried my first and last cigarette.
Keeping my secret with Shane was decidedly easier than I thought it would be.
I avoided my parents for a week straight after that day in my bedroom. I swore that if my mother took one look at me, she'd know. She always just knew things, even when she was one of those distant mothers that hardly paid any attention to me. And I definitely didn't want to see my father. I wasn't sure I could handle it if he started spouting off at the mouth about the dirty queers he'd seen in his office or at the gas station or whatever.
Ry and Chloe were impossible to avoid and I wasn't sure I was capable of going a day without seeing the two of them, but they never asked any questions. They made comments about how they were glad I pulled the stick out of my ass or how they wouldn't ask any questions if I'd stop smiling like some sort of crazy person. I even liked being around them as long as the conversation never strayed toward Shane. And it rarely did. Ry made a few comments here and there, but I never had the balls to do anything other than pretend like it wasn't happening.
And Shane...when I was with Shane, I didn't have time to think about anything. I couldn't get enough of him. Not just the kissing, though that was good too. I liked talking to him. I never got tired of hearing his voice, soft, raspy, and deep. He always sounded like he'd just woken up and I was always smiling around him.
When he was around, I couldn't stop trying to figure out a way to get him closer and when he was gone, I couldn't stop thinking about him, period. I wondered whether what I was feeling would qualify as `falling for him' but I didn't want to think about that either.
I avoided him at school. I couldn't be around him without being completely obvious and I knew I'd totally blow the whole thing if anyone actually saw us together. God, Ry and Chloe would totally catch on within a second of seeing us within ten feet of each other. So, I avoided him. Whenever other people were around, I avoided him. For two whole fucking weeks, I didn't even acknowledge his presence where others could see.
I never thought, for a second, that it might be bothering him.
Obviously, I was wrong. But you knew that.
"It's fucked up, Jake," Shane said, throwing his book bag onto my bedroom floor after we got out of swim practice.
"I told you," I said, dropping my arms to my side, helplessly. "I don't want anyone to know."
"Yeah, I'm sure that everyone listening totally thought `hi' meant `hey, can't wait to make out with you after school. Say, wanna go fuck in the janitor's closet?' Yeah fucking right, Jake. We're supposed to be friends. Friends say `hi' to each other. You practically fucking ran away."
I think he did it on purpose. Using that word, I mean. Fuck. Shane and I definitely weren't fucking. I mean...I'd thought about it. A few times and there was always a mess in my sheets afterward, but we'd yet to get past thinking. There was definitely no actual fucking going on yet. I think he said it on purpose to make me speechless and I definitely was, for several seconds. And when I did speak, I sort of ignored the fact that he'd said it at all. It was definitely the safest course of action.
"I'm fucking sorry," I snapped finally, throwing my own bag off into the disaster area that was my room. "I panic. It's what I do."
"Yeah," Shane said caustically. "I got it."
"You don't," I snapped. "If I...if we talk at school, I'm gonna do something stupid. And everyone will know. They already know that you're...you're..."
"Gay," he snapped and it was almost cruel, the way he said it. "Yeah, they know and I don't give a shit. They don't know about you, though. I mean, seriously, Jake, you're being an asshole. If you could just act like a sane person, no one's going to think anything unless they see something. Your running off when a friend says `hi' definitely does not qualify as sane."
"Fuck you," I said, angrily and I didn't mean literally, but that didn't stop the images from filling my brain.
"Fuck you, Jake," Shane snapped back. "I think I've been cool. I'm pretty sure I have been, or I've been doing my fucking best, but this is stupid. I'm cool with not being able to kiss you...or touch you or whatever in public, I don't even think I'm ready for that, but I thought I'd at least be able to talk to my boyfriend outside of this fucking room!"
He was mad at me. Obviously. And obviously it was the worst idea ever to start grinning like a madman. Hell, I would have thought that the word `boyfriend' would have scared me. But it didn't. It was totally the opposite.
"Boyfriend?" I asked, grinning and I wasn't even slightly deterred by the way Shane rolled his eyes.
"Is that against your fucked up rules too?" he said, sighing. He dropped down onto my bed, sitting with his elbows on his knees, head in his hands. "Jake--seriously bro, this is--way too..."
"I'm sorry," I said, walking over to sit next to him, moving quicker than I thought I was capable of. Something in my chest was falling into my stomach and something else was stuck in my throat and I was fucking terrified. And not because he called me his boyfriend. But there was something in his voice that made me feel like he was about to take it back.
I can't even express how much that was so not on. And I was scared.
"I'm sorry," I repeated, quietly. I wanted to touch him, but I wasn't sure if it would make things worse. I wanted to kiss him and make everything go away. But I didn't. I wasn't sure if he'd let me.
"I should probably go," he sighed, looking up at me. "I--I'll see you later, cool?"
"No," I said, firmly and I finally put a hand on his arm, just in case he decided to try and move anyway. "Don't. I'm sorry, Shane. I won't...I don't know, okay. I'm trying."
"No, Jake, I know," Shane sighed, closing his eyes, and I focused on swallowing whatever was stuck in my throat. "I'm sorry. It's just," he paused, chuckling. "You're so fucking paranoid. It's hard."
"Don't go," I repeated, looking into his eyes and holding him there and I honestly didn't care if I was being pathetic.
He sighed, looking back at me. "I don't know what the fuck I'm doing anymore," he said and he kissed me. Hard. So hard that I bit my lip, but I really didn't care. I kissed him back with everything I had, not even bothering to go lock the door and vowed to at least have a conversation with him the next time I saw him in school.
I fell asleep with him. Our kissing eventually grew slower, almost leisurely as we lay there, but I liked the slow kissing just as much as I liked it any other way. The soft touching felt good and I wasn't in any hurry. I wanted it to last. I really had thought that it would eventually get old. That I'd eventually get tired of his lips. Of being more than just friends, but it'd yet to happen. I loved all of it. All of him. And we kissed, slowly for what seemed like forever and I was so fucking relaxed. His gentle touching had me sighing constantly in pleasure and when our kissing finally slowed to a stop, we talked, laying there face to face, lips still touching, we talked each other to sleep. Not about anything important. We weren't making promises we'd never keep or making stupid declarations, we just talked, until both of us passed out.
It was dark when I woke up. So dark, that I figured that Shane would be gone, because he still never stayed at my house after it got late. I actually missed him, I was so pathetic, but I wasn't surprised. He always ran off at around seven, leaving me to spend the rest of my night with Ry and Chloe. Which was perfect, really, because Ry, Chloe and me, usually never hung out before seven thirty on the week days anyway. Ry disappeared after school or swim practice and Chloe was always with her mom those days.
So, yeah, I thought Shane would be gone when I woke up and found that it was dark outside. His arms definitely weren't around me anymore and I was pretty sure I'd fallen asleep with my head on his shoulder. I might have been worried about the fact that he wasn't there anymore, but I was pretty sure everything was alright between us. And I fully intended to call him just to make sure.
When I rolled over to reach for my phone, though, he was still there, just a little farther away from me than he'd been when we'd fallen asleep.
I smiled as I let my hand fall around his waist, leaving the phone forgotten on my nightstand. I let my fingers play along the hem of his shirt, just barely brushing the bit of exposed skin between the bottom of his shirt and the waist of his jeans, but he didn't stir.
I could have kissed him awake, but I didn't really want to be the only one participating. And I was kind of having fun. I trailed my hand up his back, to his neck, the tips of my fingers playing in what little bit of hair he had there. I pulled slightly, trying to get him to wake up, but he grunted softly and started to turn away from me, but I held him steady. I liked the feeling of waking up with him there. He was always the first thing I was thinking about and it was cool to actually have him there already.
I pulled him in closer. And then he stirred.
"Uhm, Jake," said a voice that was all too familiar. Which should have made me happy. But it didn't. It was familiar, but not at all what I was expecting. I pulled away and actually fell off my bed in the process.
"What the fuck are you doing?" Ry asked.
And I had nowhere to fucking run.
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