Knots 5

Chapter 5

Matt

That damn Megan was a tease, but the friend in my pants and I had a date with her next Saturday. I figured it was a wait and see opportunity. Should I or shouldn't I try to have sex was the question I kept asking myself. She seemed willing and didn't seem willing at the same time. This was going to be like losing my virginity all over again, and as stupid as it sounded, I kept wondering if Megan was the right one.

My problem has always been that I just think too much. Part of it was that I finally began to realize that actions have consequences, and I was going to have to start thinking about the consequences before I acted. I wasn't worried about getting her pregnant. Condoms were a must, so that was off the table, but she acted so coy, it was hard to tell if she wanted to have sex or not. At least with Andy, I knew. There was never any doubt, and if we were boyfriends, we'd be exclusive, and we could do it anytime we wanted. That sure would have been the simplest solution. After all, we were together most of the time anyway, but I wanted to find myself, as if I was somewhere to be found.

I saw a quote the other day from George Bernard Shaw. It said: Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself." I didn't know it at the time, but I guess that's what I was trying to do in some odd sort of way. They say experience is the best teacher, but I've come to believe this is true only if you're willing to endure the pain that goes along with it. It might be a lot easier to listen to the wise people who have gone ahead of us and warned us about the stupid things we shouldn't do. You know how parents always tell their children not to touch the stove because they might get burned. Well, if a kid listens to his parents, he won't get burned, but if he doesn't, then he will. Yes, he learned his lesson, and he'll be in pain for a day or two. If the burn is real serious, he may carry a scar with him his whole life.

I was seventeen, and I had enough scars to last a lifetime. I should have known better. My parents taught me better. Now they were disappointed in me, and I was disappointed in myself. So where's the balance? Our English teacher wrote a new inspirational quote on the chalkboard every day, and this is an old Chinese proverb I had to write down: "There are no limits to the bounds of moderation." It made me examine my life. Is a little sex okay, but too much sex not okay? Is a little food okay, but too much food not okay? Is a little loneliness okay, but too much loneliness not okay? Is a little love okay, but too much love not okay? Is a little whiskey okay, and too much whiskey not okay? As you can see, this could go on forever. It all comes down to balance.

Andy and I decided to call our story Knots because knots often describe what we do with our lives. But it doesn't mean that all knots are bad. There are good knots and bad knots. There are love knots that are good as long as they're not used to tie someone up or tie them down or keep them from being themselves. Thomas untied the knot that held him and Colt together because Colt felt tied down and wanted to fly. I smile every time I think of Colt wanting to fly. It may have been different if they were married and had children, but at their age, it was the right thing to do. The only way Thomas could have saved himself from that hurt was to have never tied himself to Colt in the first place. But would he have been better for it? Pain is a part of life. I now realize that while some people would think I was crazy for doing what I did, I think I was brave. I was taking a chance on losing Andy as I pursued this desire to learn more about who Matt Spence was. But life is about taking chances. The secret is not taking chances that will ruin your life forever. If a person plays with matches near a can of gasoline, starts a fast-burning fire, and suffers third degree burns, then he was stupid. Too often we play with matches and get severe life-altering burns. It was that way for Andy and Dillon. Dillon went to jail and Andy was ready to kill himself. Nothing good came from our prostitution. Andy was almost killed. The only reason I was saved was because I stopped playing with matches before he did. But the images of what I did with all those older guys will always be in my mind. I keep hoping they will fade, but they remain there, even to this day.

You can see that I was filled with self-doubt. That's part of life though. If we always do the safe and sure thing, then we won't have much self-doubt. Most of us want to avoid pain and hurt in our lives, so we do all kinds of crazy things to avoid it. Some of those things cause us more hurt and pain than if we'd have kept a level head and sought balance. Look at Ollie, he had dressed all emo when he first came to school because he thought it showed he was different. The thing he failed to realize was that we are all different just because we're us. We're unique. A person doesn't have to go out of their way to be different. Martin Luther King was different. Abraham Lincoln was different, Jesus was different, Gandhi was different, and what they did made a difference. I want to be that kind of different.

*****

Andy came over Sunday after my date. "Did you fuck her?"

"Is that all you ever think about? No, I didn't have sex. Didn't even try."

"Coward. Of course, I knew you wouldn't, and talking to you about your date would be a bore. I'd be happy to tell you about our threesome."

"I don't want to hear it. But I do have some other news."

He smiled. "What? You're gay?"

"Colt walked into Sam's Pizza with Zoe. They sat with us, and he kept giving me the eye the whole time we were there. I think he wants me."

Andy grabbed my hand. "So do I."

I pulled away. "Tough. Neither of you are going to get me. For now, I'm sticking with Megan. We had a lot of fun. She's kind of a prick teaser, but I liked the banter that went on between us." He let out a low laugh. "You mean like we're doing now?"

"Well, I guess, kinda. She felt small in my arms and her lips were soft and she smelled..."

"I know. Just like a girl."

"She was fun and kind of a challenge."

"You mean like me?"

"Yeah, Andy. If you must know, yes, you are just like a girl except for the soft lips and breasts."

"Did you touch those babies?"

"No. We only kissed."

"Does she kiss as well as me?"

I laughed. "You'll be happy to hear she wanted to know if she kissed better than you and Thomas."

"What did you say?"
"I said a lot better."

"Asshole."

Megan and Zoe

Zoe called Megan that same night. "How was your date with Matt?"

"Wonderful. He's so sweet. How `bout Colt?"

"Him too. We had a great time, and he's an awesome kisser."

"Is that all you did?"

"None of your business."

"Maybe not, but did you see the way Colt was looking at Matt when we were at Sam's?"

"It's just your imagination. I think you're a little jealous because I got an actual date with Colt. I believe I won the bet."

"I'll give you that, but Matt's older and wiser, more mature, and a great kisser too. Plus he's probably going to be the starting quarterback this year."

"That might be, Megan, but Colt will have his day. Trust me."

"His day with you?"

"No, in football."

"He doesn't play football."

"I know, but after doing so well in basketball, he's thinking about playing football."

"Good for him." Megan paused. "Did Colt put any moves on you?"

"Moves?"

"Yeah, like touch you."

"He tried. I pushed his hand away. How about Matt?"

"No, he was the perfect gentleman."

Zoe cleared her throat. "How far do you think we should let them go?"

"Why are you asking me? It's up to you."

"I know, but I'm not sure. He's so hot I could eat him."

"Maybe that's the answer to your question."

"The first time should be special, and I'm not quite sure he's the one," Zoe replied. "How `bout you and Matt?"

"Same here. You're never going to believe it, but I asked him if I kissed as well as Andy and Thomas."

"What did he say?"

"He got upset. It was cute. I think I embarrassed him."

"But, what did he say?"

"He avoided the question, but we started kissing again, and he put his tongue in my mouth. I think it made him hard."

"Why?"

"I don't know. It just seemed like he was full of passion. Did Colt get hard?"

"I don't know. He seemed excited enough, but he's been having sex with Thomas all this time, so I'm wondering if he can even get excited with a girl."

"There's one way to find out. Put your hand on his you-know-what."

"I'm not going to do that," Zoe protested.

"Just tell him you wanted to see if you turned him on."

"What if he's soft? Does that mean I don't turn him on?"

"You're asking me? I suppose there's no way of telling. Everyone's different, even straight guys. Some guys I've kissed did nothing for me and others, like Matt, really turned me on. I think it depends on the guy. Did Colt turn your knobs?

"My knobs?"

"Yeah, you know, like turning on the stove. Did he light your fire?"

"Yeah. I got all hot and tingly."

"Maybe he's the one," Megan said.

"Maybe, but I think we should take it slow. I'll follow his lead."

"Good idea, but sometimes guys need a little encouragement, so don't leave it all up to him."

"When did you get to know so much about guys? Have you had more experience than you've told me about?"

"No, just heard other girls talk. I think they're right."

"You may be right, Megan. I think Colt probably needs a little shove."

"Matt does too."

Andy

My world was a mess because there were temptations all around me. Colt was free, Thomas was free, Ashton and Scott were free. Just thinking of the possibilities was driving me crazy. From what Matt said, Colt might be on the prowl, and I was thinking we could ask him to join Ashton, Scott, and me in a four-way. Thomas let me know he wasn't interested, and besides, Matt would shoot me if I tried to do anything with Thomas. I wasn't sure how he'd feel about me going after Colt. The way I saw it, Colt could be a starter on both teams. He could mess around with us, date Zoe, and mess around with her. He'd almost be as experienced as me, except for the whole prostitution thing. It really bothers me to say that here. But unfortunately, it's a fact.

My mom set up an appointment with Dr. Walker for Friday morning, and it seemed like it was never going to happen. Our eight days of August football pre-conditioning were a couple of weeks away, and my time to meet with Dr. Walker was going to be limited.

Matt went to Megan's a couple of times during the week to swim. Colt and Zoe joined them, so I was Matt-less most of the week. We did finally get together to throw the football around on Wednesday. He'd grown a couple of inches since last summer. He put on at least fifteen pounds, weighing about one seventy-five. Poor me, I grew maybe an inch, if I was lucky, and only gained ten pounds, so I was a huge 140 pounds. My confidence was low not only because of my size, but because I'd missed two football seasons and two basketball seasons. I'd have to fight younger guys to get a starting position. Thank God for Matt taking a little of his precious time to spend with his best friend to work on throwing the ball, taking on handoffs, and making fakes. Yes, I was upset with him. He should have been spending all of his time with me, but no, he was with Megan instead.

We jogged to the park. Life had sure changed. "Matt, I was just thinking how cool it was to ride in Dillon's BMW convertible. It made me feel confident, like the whole world belonged to me. Too bad it wasn't true." I expected him to say, I warned you, but you didn't listen. Instead, he joked.

"Which did you like more, riding in his car or riding his BMW? You know, BMW, Big Manly Weeny?"

"You're not funny, Matt."

"Hell, Andy, it's been awhile. You need to start laughing about it. Shit, after everything we've done, you need to quit taking life so seriously. Besides, you're always the one making jokes."

I sat on the grass under a tree, and Matt joined me. "You're right, Matt. But it still hurts. It's easy for you to laugh. It didn't happen to you."

"It did, Andy. It affected all of us. Think how different our lives would be if there had been no Dillon Burke?"

I pulled some grass and threw it at him. "Is that your way of saying, I told you so?"

"No. This is about Dillon's action, not yours. He is a predator. Yeah, you thought you wanted him and you did, but he came onto you, not the other way around."

"But I wanted it."

He grabbed some grass and threw it back. "Look. He was seventeen, our age now, and you were fourteen. Randy and Thomas were thirteen. Look how young the freshman and 8th graders look. We were just like that."

"Shit, I never thought about it that way," I said surprised. "Those kids seem like babies. I know some of them think they're cool and hot shit, but they're still just kids, and we're going to be adults in a few months."

"Right. I'm sure that if we wanted to, we could lure a few of them into the sack because they think we're cool and know we're gay. Well, at least you are." Matt laughed. "I've decided I'm bi. Is that okay?"

"No. I want you to be one hundred percent gay and with me, not Megan."

"I don't want to get into that. You get my point though, don't you?"

"Yeah."

"So who knows how things would have turned out if Dillon never went after young boys."

"You're right. Things might have been a lot different. Actually, Matt, what you don't realize is that all this was a clever ploy to get you to have sex with me."

"Not funny, Andy."

"You just said we needed to laugh and not take life so seriously. That's what I'm doing."

"Okay, I'll give you that one." Matt stood and held out his hand. "Now it's time to get off your ass and prepare to be in the starting backfield with me." I grabbed his hand, and he pulled me up like I was a folding chair.

"I sure don't feel strong or ready."

"What ever happened to that guy who used to always brag about being Andy Gibson? It's time that guy came back. I'll be here for you, Andy. No matter what happens in our lives, you will always be my best friend. And don't forget, no matter how many knots we tie in our lives or how many mistakes we make, I will always love you unconditionally."

"Even if I go after Colt or Thomas?"

He kicked me in the ass. "Go out for a pass."

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Chapter Quotes

 

To be nobody but yourself in a world which is doing its best, night and day, to make you everybody else means to fight the hardest battle which any human being can fight; and never stop fighting. e. e. cummings

 

It takes courage to grow up and become who you really are. - e. e. cummings


Once we believe in ourselves, we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight, or any experience that reveals the human spirit. e. e. cummings

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If you like this story, please write a review, click like, and follow me. Contact me at eliassctt@gmail.com I answer all emails.

 

I'd like to thank Lisa for taking the time to edit Knots 1, 2, 3, 4, and 5. As the author, I take final responsibility for all parts of the story, including any errors.

 

This story is a work of fiction. Names, characters, places, and incidents are the product of the author's imagination and are used fictitiously. Any resemblance to actual persons living or dead, events or locales, is purely coincidental and no slanderous intent is implied.