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Ryan could see it in my face on the ride home. I just know it.
Or maybe it was the deafening silence in the car that he noticed before anything else. Who knows? Either way, I know that he had seen the same thing that I had seen right after our big, supposedly 'shameless', kiss on a public street. Hailey...technically his 'EX' girlfriend, was right there watching us from across the street. I'd love to be oblivious enough to think that a teenaged girl wouldn't notice two hot boys from her school practically making out right in front of her! I'd like to think that the whole act went unnoticed and that nothing about our date night would have any future consequences. But who am I fooling? Seriously. I mean...she saw us....didn't she? Hailey saw us both. She 'knows'.And I have NO idea what that means yet. But all of my most paranoid thoughts lead me to believe that it CAN'T be any good!
That bothered me. I mean...one day coming out to my friends and family was one thing....
Being FORCED to come out against my will...before my time...outside of my personal comfort zone...that was apocalyptic to me. Especially when it came to the vengeful heart of a woman scorned. The very idea of it all had me trembling inside.
I know that people may not really sympathize, understand, or support, my need to keep my true feelings hidden for just a little bit longer ....but that sense of privacy was something that was really important to me. And while Ryan was always quick to say how much he was willing to respect that and keep our relationship a secret....
Hailey never had a reason to make such a claim.
She was a wild card, to say the least.
What if she 'told'? Is she still heartbroken over Ryan? Angry, maybe? Would our exposure to the whole school be a part of her 'justice' considering Ryan's lack of interest in her? I mean...how much ego would she gain by telling people, "It wasn't me! Ryan's just gay! And he has a boyfriend too! That's why he dumped me!"
I think Ryan saw me sitting in an uncomfortable position in the passenger seat of his car, staring out of the window with an intensity that let him know that I was thinking too much again. Like I always do.
"Dude...I swear, if you decide to jump from this moving car, I'm NOT stopping to come back and pick you up! Hehehe!" Ryan said, hoping to inject a little bit of humor into the tense moment.
I attempted to give him a half-hearted smile, but I don't know how sincere it looked on such short notice.
He said, "Randy...seriously, it's no big deal. Ok? I mean it."
"What if she tells somebody?" I said. "What if she tells everybody?"
"So what?" He said. "Would that be so bad?" That's what Ryan said to me...and I have to admit, the silence that followed was all my fault. And I felt bad for it. I really did. Especially when Ryan looked over at me and seemed to retract the statement altogether. "Look, we can always say that it never happened. Right? It's her word against ours. I broke up with her. Maybe it'll just come off as some desperate attempt to get back at me or something. I mean, rumors come and go. It'll hardly last more than a week or two as long as we don't feed it by confirming or denying anything. Just...don't WORRY so much, ok? It sucks to see you so miserable like this."
A feeling of shame washed over me, and I told him, "Ryan...I'm so sorry. I'm so very sorry. I don't want you to think that I'm...uncomfortable about you and me being together. I just..."
"Dude, don't worry about that. I'm not trying to push you to do anything that you don't want to do, ok? It doesn't even matter. I just want us to be happy. You and me. That's all that I care about."
"I just...I wish I had your courage when it came to this..." I mumbled sadly.
At that point, Ryan and I had come to a red light, and he stopped the car...turning his head to look me in the eye, and lightly resting his hand on mine. He said, "Randy...I did what I did because I felt that I had to. That was the right moment for me. I don't know...maybe it was the accident, or the idea that my dad didn't know me as well as I wanted him to. Maybe it was just me being so far gone in love with you that it felt like a total blasphemy to not tell other people how I felt about you. I don't know what it was. But that was MY moment. Ok? I was given an opportunity...and I felt a certain tug on my heart. That's all it was. It's not like I really planned for it. It just happened. And someday...the same thing will happen to you. You'll know when it's right. Trust me." Why was he even being nice to me about this? You'd think he'd be frustrated with my lack of disclosure. I'm not what he wanted me to be. Not yet. I figured that would be a deal breaker in situations like this. But it wasn't. Not for him. Ryan loved me no matter what. All the time. Flaws and all. It's a love like his that made you question whether or not you were worthy of something so special. So utterly divine. He loved me for no reason at all, other than I was willing to love him back. How rare is that? How irreplaceable? How fragile?
I said, "I just feel like...everything will be ruined when this whole relationship becomes about something other than just you and me being happy. I don't want it to be about whispers in the hallway, or staring eyes, or our parents approval or disapproval. I don't want ANYBODY else but you. I mean...does that make any sense? Do you know what I'm saying? I just don't want to think about...'them'. At all. Not ever. Just....you and me. Together. Happy."
Ryan gripped my hand tightly as we heard the sound of a car horn behind us, telling us that the light was green. He started off, but ?I think he was actually kind of touched by what I had to say. It was the truth. Our relationship could suffer through almost anything if it had to...but I was afraid to go down that road. The hard road. Where we become so busy trying to battle the opinions of people who have NOTHING to do with us and our feelings for each other....that our love takes a backseat to the conflicts and obstacles ahead of us. I didn't want that. And as much as I wanted to believe that we could maneuver our way through it all if we had to...why complicate things more than needed? I mean...right?
Is that just a comfortable excuse that I've been using to remain a coward about the whole thing? When it comes to leaping out of the closet in front of my friends and family...I seem to have more excuses than incentives. It's hard to tell whether it's a paranoid psychosis or just a matter of self preservation, working to keep the life I hold dear safe from being ripped apart by people who don't have the capacity to understand. But whatever it is...it all leads down to one question. And one question alone.
If I can't come out for me and feel comfortable about it...could I find the strength to do it for him? It's not even a question of whether or not he's worth it. Of COURSE Ryan is worth it! That and much much more. He's what I want. I can't imagine being SO in love with anyone else! I just wish that the answer to that one question was as easy as I wanted it to be.
We got close to home, and I felt a little bad about our first real 'date' coming to an end. I mean, as long as Ryan and I had been together...as many awesome times and giggles that we've shared with one another...we never really made our love....ummm...'official' like this before. Not that I can remember. Well...you know, except for Ryan screaming that we had been fucking all night to a few old ladies standing outside of a hotel! Hahaha! I still owe him a slug in the stomach for that one. But I noticed that his car wasn't slowing down much as we got closer to my house.
I raised an eyebrow and Ryan and I exchanged a smile. "Hehehe, what are you doing?" I asked.
Ryan smirked as he passed my house up. "Our date's not over yet."
"Oh really, now?"
"Nope! You're coming over." He grinned.
"Annnnnd...what happens when I come over tonight?"
"Hopefully, you'll get naked and frisky and we can start our Spring Break a little bit early." He said.
"Hahaha! Excuse me?" I giggled.
"I bought you dinner, took you to a nice place...and now you owe me, buster."
"Are you suggesting that, just because you paid for most of a fancy dinner...with MY help, no less...that I owe you some sexual favors to show my appreciation?"
"I'm not suggesting anything. I want some ass, dammit!" He said, and laughed out loud when he saw me gasp and lean back against the car door.
"Hahaha! You're such a fucking GENTLEMAN, Ryan!" I cackled.
He said, "Does that mean you're not coming over?" He looked over at me with a smile. I felt myself blush slightly, even though I tried to hide it from him. Was there any real point in trying to hide my true feelings from Ryan at this point? "I can totally turn this car around and take you back home, if you want." He was calling my bluff in a major way, and it made us both laugh.
"MAYBE I'll come over for a little bit. And we'll see what happens..." I said.
"Oh, I know what's gonna happen." He replied. "I'm going to make this a night to remember. Trust me on this. This will be a night that you'll want to keep close to your heart for a long time to come."
I saw him grinning to himself, and I just couldn't help myself. I quickly leaned over to kiss him gently on the smooth surface of his flawless cheek. "It's already that kinda night." I said. "Thanks for making everything so...special. K? I love you."
"I love you more..." He replied, and we pulled into his driveway at the end of the street. God, I was already hard. We both were. Thank goodness for the darkness of a Friday night, because we were both looking pretty obscene as we hurried up to his front door and into his house. Hehehe! The neighbors would have gotten quite an eyeful, had they been watching.
Did we make love? Heh...of course we did. For the better part of two hours, in fact. We barely got through the front door without reaching for one another. His body was always so warm. His caress, so gentle. Sometimes he would run his fingers through my hair, and it would give me goosebumps from head to toe. He always knew just how to touch me.
That precise touch at that particular moment...combined with the sensual pressure of his lips against mine...it was an electrifying experience for the both of us. And yet, he always made me feel like it was something that he was doing just for me.
We had been together for a long time, and had developed an internal instinct for one another that kept our every movement in sync. Every kiss, every lick, every curve, every whimper, every moan. And when our bodies tensed up and we enjoyed the feverish contractions on a shared release...Ryan refused to let me go. No...he kissed me deeply on the lips, and he'd wrap his loving arms around me...the warmth of his skin bathing me in a radiant glow...and he'd hold me close until our breathing slowed and our muscles relaxed. His arms were strong. Protective. And I'd feel myself trembling as his adoration for me extended my orgasm for much longer than the initial explosion. I could feel his breath on my shoulder. Soft kisses, randomly touching the back of my neck without warning. And when I purred with delight in his tender cradle, it would excite him to the point of clinging tighter. Ryan's legs were so smooth as they rubbed up and down against my own. It was a level of comfort that I've never known. One that I'd never be able to live without ever again. It was love. A special love. A 'complete' love.
Such a fragile thing.
After a while, Ryan had gotten up to grab some bottled water from the fridge downstairs. Hehehe, I desperately needed something to drink, but I was too comfortable to get up and get it. Nor did I want to say anything, simply because I didn't want Ryan to let me go. Luckily, he thought about me and came back with two bottles instead of one. He leaned back against the headboard, and I snuggled up beside him, laying my head on his chest. His heartbeat was slow and steady. His voice always sounded a bit deeper to me whenever he moaned softly in my ear. A low grumble that tickled the senses and created a warm rush that washed over me like warm waves rolling onto the edge of an exotic beach. He took a few sips of his water, but made sure to keep his arm draped attentively over my shoulder...occasionally leaning over to place a kiss on my forehead. It just made me realize...things could actually be like this for us. I'm not talking about on a Friday night while his dad wasn't home. I mean...it was possible that there may come a time when he and I could maybe be like this...all the time. Like a real couple. Sharing a house or an apartment somewhere...hehehe, I'd cook something up for dinner, and Ryan and I would cuddle on the couch to watch TV together. Kissing sweetly during the commercials. And when it was time for bed, we'd get up and retire to the bedroom...kiss each other goodnight...and then we could just relax, with Ryan holding me close...just like he is now.
It was such a simple and subtle fantasy, but it was one that seemed soooo farfetched when Ryan was just that hot new kid in class that I was trying to picture naked. Hehehe, no...this was different. There was a place for us. A place where we could build our own world together and make it work. Life could be one long fantasy, day in and day out, for the rest of our lives. Just us, together. I don't know what made me so unbelievably happy in that golden moment, but I smiled wide as I kissed Ryan gently on his nipple, and gave him a squeeze as I buried my head in his chest again.
"Aren't we feeling affectionate tonight?" Ryan smirked. "You want to try for one more? My dad still won't be home for another 20 minutes or so. At least, I don't think he will. It depends on traffic..."
While more sex is always a plus, I didn't want to rush. Ryan was always so much better when he was being slow and sexy, enjoying every last second of it as if it was an eternity all its own...his eyes staring into mine. No, I just wanted to be close for now. We'd have plenty of time for more heavy breathing during Spring Break. I was going to make sure of that. I told him, "Tonight was perfect, Ryan. Everything was awesome. Thank you."
"Well, tonight was long overdue." He replied, and gave me another quick kiss as he said, "I love you. I want you to be happy."
Another kiss was exchanged, and I couldn't help but to think back to my vision of Ryan and I living together somewhere else...
In my head, I practically had us shopping for pets and furniture. I couldn't believe how soothing it was, the idea that I could lay here naked in bed with the boy that I loved...and not have to go anywhere. To never look at a clock, or whisper an intimate word. Wow....I think I'm trembling again. I like this feeling.
I told him, "You know...I was thinking...maybe it won't be so bad." Ryan's forehead wrinkled a bit, and I added, "The Hailey thing, I mean."
"I mean, even if she saw what I think she saw, and she told people...maybe it won't be a big deal. In fact, it may even turn out to be a sigh of relief." Ryan snickered for a second. "What? What's funny?"
He said, "I must have rocked your world pretty hard tonight to make you say something like that, that's all." He started to laugh as I gave his nipple a sudden twist. "Hehehe, I'm just saying! I think I've got you all tamed and cuddly now, maybe I should start asking for favors and stuff before you return to your senses."
"I'm being serious here, ya know?" I grinned. "I was just thinking that...it might be kinda cool. Being able to hold your hand in public, give you a kiss at your locker every morning..."
"Have wild, hot buttered, boy sex in the bushes behind Frankie's...AHHH!!!" I gave him another twist, and he playfully grabbed a hold of my wrist to protect himself from any further injury. But after a moment or two of struggling, his beautiful eyes softened, and he leaned in to give me a delicate kiss on the lips. "I think that sounds like an awesome idea to me."
"Sometimes, I still think about what it would be like to wake up every morning, and roll over to see you sleeping at my side. Something about it is just..." I sighed out loud, "...It's just the most peaceful and cozy feeling in the world. No secrets. No excuses."
"Well, I'm sure we'll find a place of our own someday. Maybe just outside of town so we don't have to worry about people from high school gawking at us all the time." He said.
"I want them to gawk. Gawk away. I'm proud to have the prettiest, most popular, boy on the block. I'm just saying...maybe it's time, you know? Maybe this Hailey thing will be just what I needed. Maybe it's time I peeked out of that dark closet for a while and got to see what life on the outside is like, you know?"
Hehehe, Ryan seemed really surprised, playfully putting the back of his hand to my forehead. "Are you sure that you're feeling alright? Did I find a new G-spot on you tonight, or what? This is too weird."
"Don't laugh at me..." I grinned with a pouty lip.
"Who's laughing? I'm just shocked. It's so sudden..."
"Yeah. Well...I guess I didn't want to spend the rest of my Spring Break wondering and worrying and stressing out about what Hailey is going to do when school starts back up again." I said. "You were right. It shouldn't matter. I'm not going to LET it matter." I got a warm flutter in my stomach from the appreciative smile that Ryan gave me after hearing that. Then he rubbed his nose against mine in the cutest way, before kissing my lips again.
"Me either." He said, drawing me in to embrace me with both arms and let that unfathomably soft skin of his slide against mine again. And without another word spoken, he just held me there for a few minutes. Just hearing him breathe was like magic to me.
Then...like a brick through window...the moment was shattered in an instant.
Ryan just said it absentmindedly, I'm sure...but it sucked to hear just the same. Maybe a part of me hasn't learned to let go yet.
"Sean says it always seems like it's going to be a lot worse than you think it'll be in your mind. But at the end of the day, the benefits outweigh the bullshit. When I think about telling my dad and stuff, he's right, you know? It takes some adjustment, but people get used to it eventually." I didn't say anything at first. I just...laid there, wishing that I didn't notice that subtle pinch of heartbreak in my chest. "What?" Ryan asked. "What's wrong?"
"Don't tell me 'nothing'. Your body temperature, seriously, just dropped like thirty five degrees. What did I say?"
"Nothing. Really." I gave him a half-hearted kiss and started to get up. "I should go. Your dad will be home soon..."
"Randy, wait. Come here." He said.
"No, it's ok. I'm ok. Everything is...ok..."
"Come on..." Ryan took me by the hand and pulled me back into his arms again, giving me a kiss before looking me directly in the eye. "Do you trust me?"
"It's not that I don't trust you, Ryan. Ok? It's just..."
"Sean and I are friends. That's what we are. That's all we are. He doesn't have a snowball's chance in Hell of being anything more." He said, and I kind of rolled my eyes, hoping that he would forget about it. I didn't want this whole evening to go South at the last minute. I just didn't want to wreck everything. "Hey...look at me." Ryan said with a grin. "I knew...I mean I really KNEW...that I was in love with you from the very first moment that I walked into that History class. You're the one that I want. I'm not chasing any rainbows. I'm not deluded enough to think that I could do any better. I've got my winning lottery ticket right here next to me. Nothing else matters. Nothing."
"Don't be sorry. I love you. I want you to know that. I need you to know that. Ok?" He caressed the side of my face with his hand, and with all the sincerity he could muster, he said, "I made you a promise, Randy Stephens. I would never, EVER, cheat on you. Never. I'm not going anywhere. I told you that I'd be faithful to you, and I'm sticking to my word. I've loved you for so long, I don't think I'd even know how to love somebody else. Hehehe, so...believe in me. K? Believe in 'us'."
That ache in my chest...it began to dissolve. A warm and soothing sensation taking its place. And as our lips touched again, and my hand slowly slid up his flat chest, around the side of his neck, and back to lightly toy with the strawberry blond locks of his hair...I felt at home again. Completely at home.
Then Ryan got a wicked gleam in his eye and said, "Besides, I already cheated on you like a hundred times already. It's gotten kinda boring at this point."
"Hehehe! What kind of a heartless, whorish, gigolo do you take me for, anyway?"
"Doesn't matter. Because if you run out on me, I'm banging every cute boy that I can get my hands on.Just you watch!" I giggled.
"Noooooo...don't!" He whined.
He rubbed my bottom softly. "Because, hehehe! Mine." He said. "Nobody else. Just me."
"Besides, nobody is gonna make your toes curl like I do anyway." He grinned.
"If you say so, porn star."
"Now, seriously...let go of me. I've gotta get dressed before your dad gets home." Ryan did give me another gentle kiss or two, but eventually let me get up. I put my shoes on last, and saw him doing the same. "What are you doing?"
"What do you mean? I'm gonna walk you home."
"Ryan, I live down the street. I'm fine. Just relax."
"This is still our first 'date', ya know? What? Like I was just gonna lay in bed and say, 'thanks for the sex, now get out!' Hehehe, come on. Let me walk you home."
I don't know why that seemed like such a special thing to me at that moment, but it did. I got caught up staring into his eyes for a moment, and finally managed to mumble, "Thanks. Yeah...that would be...cool." It was almost like falling in love all over again. Is that possible? I didn't think I could get any more goofy over this boy. But, as always, Ryan has so many ways to impress me.
He walked me all the way to my front door, and I knew that my mom was just on the other side of that door. In the house somewhere, doing 'mom' stuff. But even though Ryan was well rehearsed in the art of keeping our little affections a secret...this was the one time that I really didn't want him to.
"I had a great time tonight, Randy. You're the perfect date. I'll make sure that we do stuff like this more often. K?" I nodded, and he smiled. "I'll see you tomorrow. And remember, carnival this week! Stash some cash for it." He started to walk away, but I quickly reached out to pull him back. And I kissed him deeply on the lips...right there in front of the living room window. If my mom had been watching TV in there, she would have seen us for sure. But I didn't think about that. More importantly, I didn't care. This was the love of my life, and I was proud to have found it. Proud to be a part of it. And as we embraced and allowed our tongues to mingle softly between us...I felt myself letting go. The fear just melted away...and only that kiss maintained its importance.
We eventually parted, and the look on Ryan's face caused me to giggle to myself.
"You are just full of surprises tonight, aren't you?"
"Hopefully...someday soon...it won't be a surprise anymore." I said.
"Hopefully so." He said, and gave me a wink before walking away. Back to the sidewalk, and back home. Looking over his shoulder to give me a playful wave.
He's beautiful. He's just so damn beautiful. And he's mine.