First, a warning: If you find homosexual conduct between youths offensive or do not wish to view or read such material, or it would be considered illegal in your situation, close this page or file and discard it. This material is intended only for audiences who wish to view it.
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Third, content codes: BB con mast oral anal play Young Teen High School Boys Consensual Masturbation Anal Oral Play
Fourth, description: The following story contains the consensual sexual activities of teenaged boys. While some of the events may be true, the names of all involved are altered, the locations are changed, and circumstances and activities modified. No identifying information is provided. This work is intended for entertainment only. Overall, this is a collection of reminisces, fiction and collected fantasies.
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For all the goodness than comes with closeness, between friends and more.
For all the beauty, obscured and obliterated, by the actions of idiots,
To all the ones who can tell the difference,
and especially to the ones who live the difference...
Author's Note: This is the longest chapter so far. Let me know if you think it rambles a bit too much and where. I just can't bear to cut it any more.
More Birthday Surprises
"I bet so..." Tom trailed off.
"I should have listened to you and closed the door," Ray offered, snapping out of his reverie. "Man, she must have got a good look! We weren't under any covers or anything! Mom must have seen us, closed the door, turned off the teevee and yelled goodnight before dad came up," Ray stated. "Dude, that was a major screw up."
"Why? It turned out excellent, man! You got it sooo good!"
"Yes, I did!" Ray said conspiratorially, bouncing his eyebrows and smiling slyly.
"You perv! I meant you got it good with your parents! If this was switched, I would be in the morgue right now and my dad in handcuffs and there would be yellow tape all around my house!"
Just then the front doorbell rang and a familiar knock announced the arrival of the first party guests; Eric if the melodic knock following the bell was any indication, and it was. As Ray opened the door he noticed it had started snowing harder and two or more inches already covered the ground.
"HEY! Happy sixteen, Ray!" Eric said in his slight country accent, passing Ray a large, square, box wrapped in gold paper.
"Ooo, lemme guess," Ray said, hefting the box and gently shaking it. It was about one foot to each side and didn't make a noise depites Ray's violent handling; it felt like one, solid, unmoving object. "What the..."
"You won't guess, don't even try! Just wait 'till you open it!" Eric stated, shrugging off his heavy winter coat.
It had become a long-standing tradition, Ray's guessing what a gift was before opening it. Birthdays, Christmas, any time he received a gift. The boys had started getting wise to the game and had begun to do whatever they could to try to fool him, or at least, prevent any kind of reasonable guess.
Ray smiled, stopped shaking the box, and told Eric to drop his coat on the chair and come on in.
"Hey, Tom!" Eric called as Tom entered the front room, waving already.
"Hey, Eric. What's up?"
"Dude's age, it's up by another year! And he can start driving us around!" Eric said, slapping hands with Tom.
"Yea, sure, if you buy me a car!" Ray said, walking past, the large box in hand.
"Damn, he could almost fit one in that box!" Tom teased.
"Just the engine. Brent is bringing the body, Ryan the frame and Jeff the interior!" Eric laughed.
"And where would you put it together?" Ray's dad asked as the boys entered the dining room.
"We thought we would use your garage," Eric piped up.
"Oh, you supposed, did you? And what if I object to that?"
"Guess, we could put the thing together in my garage and use my tools," Tom offered.
"Yea, everything we need, a bent screwdriver and a set of tiny crescent wrenchs!" Eric teased.
"Yea, more than you got!" Tom shot back.
"No arguments over how many tools you have," Ray's dad proclaimed. "Or how big they are." Ray's father pretended not to notice as all three boys shared sly laughter and snickers. "You boys go watch a movie, we rented a couple, on the coffee table, until the rest get here?" he asked, taking the large box from Ray.
The boys turned and went to the living room through the double doors and quickly started squabbling over what movie to watch. Tom and Eric squabbled,while Ray watched.
I wonder if Eric has any idea what Tom and I are doing? Ray wondered. Lord knows he should. It's not like he and I hadn't been busy plenty in the past.
At five foot and six inches, and around 130 pounds, Eric was taller than Tom, but about the same weight. Eric was thin; really thin, so thin you could see his ribs when he had his shirt off, and almost everyone had seen him that way. What most didn't know, was you could also see his hip bones all around his waist, only Ray knew that. And the kids in Eric's P.E. class, but Ray knew it much more intimately.
That boy needs some fat and muscle, Ray though, watching Eric's narrow butt in the jeans he was wearing, noticing his hips seemed wider, and that his almost non-existent butt was more full. Was he gaining weight? Or just experiencing a growth spurt? Ray wondered.
Eric had cut his hair down to a crew cut and it looked like a sunburn on a bald head. Eric's hair, all of it, as Ray knew well, was bright red. Ray could see Eric's pale blue eyes, so pale they almost seemed gray, glinting in laughter as he and Tom continued to argue over the comedy or the horror movie.
I hope they take their time, 'cause I'm already watching what I want to see, Ray thought, watching the boys start to wrestle. Tom had about a year on Eric, and some muscle, but Eric was used to defending himself against the other boys and was holding his own. Eric got under Tom, who was now bent over Eric's back, trying to grasp hands around Eric's waist. Eric got out of Tom's arms and locked his own arms around Tom's legs, his head turned to the side and burying itself into Tom's groin.
Hey, now! Don't be hurting those, Ray thought. Those are my toys, and I don't want them damaged! The doorbell rang, interrupting the match and another of Ray's fantasies. The knocking pattern revealed that the twins, Brent and Ryan had arrived.
Tom met his dad, who was already opening it, at the door. Both twins rushed in a blizzard of energy and fresh-fallen snow.
"Hey, Ray!" and "Happy birthday!" they exclaimed in unison, presenting two identical packages wrapped in white tissue-type paper.
They weren't the only packages Ray examined slyly as his father took the two gifts and told Ray to take his guests in to see the movie. He added that he or his mom would get the door and for Ray and his friends to enjoy themselves.
Back in the living room, Tom and Eric and decided on the horror flick, somehow, and it was just starting up as Ray and the twins came in.
Both twins had left their coats in the chair at the door and were dressed in black jeans and button-front shirts. Naturally, Ray let his eyes wander over the two almost identical boys. Both had the same height and build, about five foot four or five inches, about 140 pounds, blond-brown hair and average complexions. Both also shared the same bright gray eyes, otherwise the similarities ended. Brent's face was long and narrow, his nose the same, and his front teeth a bit bucked out; they always showed, as his thin lips rarely met. Ryan, though, had a shorter, rounder face, straight teeth and fuller lips. Ryan also wore wire-rimmed glasses and was a bookworm, where Brent was the active, skateboarder type.
Ray had to watch as they took seats on the couch, squeezing in between Tom and Eric, filling the couch with their warm bodies. Ray so wished he could be that couch right about now.
"Hey, is Jeff coming?" Brent asked of Eric.
"He said he was when I talked to him today," Eric replied.
"I haven't talked to him since I invited him and he said he would try to make it," Ray said.
"So, like, what happened with you two?" Eric asked innocently.
"We had a fight, about something stupid, is all. I don't know if he is coming or not," Ray answered, truly wondering, and feeling really bad about what had come between himself and Jeff so recently.
Both twins were fighting for a bit more room, pushing each other into the other boy, either Tom or Eric, who pushed back. The whole thing was about to boil over into a wrestling match and Ray was starting to feel his dick swell and his balls stir. Brent gave Ryan a tittie-twister and Brent paid him back with a fist to his groin; a bullseye. Ryan grunted and doubled over his crotch, moaning.
"Ooops, sorry, bro," Brent said.
Before the thought could take hold, and a fantasy play out in Ray's mind about soothing poor Ryan's sore nads, the doorbell rang and Jeff's regular knock, one not heard in quite some time at Ray's house, announced Jeff's arrival.
Ray sat up, startled, and happily surprised. He heard his dad say hello to Jeff, and soft voices for a few seconds. He started to wonder what was going on, what his dad was saying to Jeff, and what Jeff was saying to his dad. The rest of the boys had heard Jeff's knock, but were busy fighting for territory on the couch.
Ray found something sexy about every one of his friends, not just The Circle members, but most especially Jeff. There was something more about how he felt about Jeff, something Ray couldn't label. If there was one of the guys Ray didn't understand how he really felt about, it was Jeff. He wanted Jeff, sexually, indeed. But Ray was deeply concerned about how Jeff saw him. He was terrified Jeff would start thinking of him as a total fag. He could handle it if about everyone else abandoned him; but not if Jeff did it, as had almost happened already. The last couple weeks had been tough; daily wanting to talk to Jeff, to explain, to smooth things over, to patch things up. Worse, though, would be Jeff thinking he was chasing after him, so Ray just let Jeff have his space.
Ray was about to go and see what was keeping Jeff, and perhaps break up their chat session before things got prickly, when Jeff strode through the door and waved at Ray, almost as if they hadn't had any fight at all.
"Happy b-day, dude," Jeff said, taking the last free chair in the room.
"Glad you made it," Ray said carefully.
The other boys gave a hi to Jeff in turn, still trying to maximize their own spaces on the couch.
Ray was glad Jeff came, it would have been weird to not have him here, but it was weird having him here, too. Jeff seemed intent on the movie, as if he had not watched it before. Ray simply didn't know what to do, or say, or try, to make things right. He decided to try to get Jeff to the side, alone, at some point, and see if there wasn't some way to get things good between them.
"Okay you heathens, the food is ready!" Ray's mom called from the doorway to the dining room. "Come and get it!"
Almost all the boys made bee-lines for the table, except Jeff and Ray. Almost as if they scripted it, they met at the end of the couch and both spoke at the same time.
"Dude, we need to talk," Jeff said as Ray said, "Jeff, I'm really, really, sorry about what happened, I just want us to be friends, man."
"It's okay, Ray. I'm sorry I acted like a kid and ran."
"I'm sorry I, for, sorry," was all Ray could manage, choking a bit on the emotions.
This wasn't lost on Jeff, who noticed Ray's red, sore eyes, not knowing about the earlier events between Ray and his parents.
Jeff put his left hand on Ray's shoulder and offered his right in the secret pledge and said, "Forget it for now, okay? We can sort it out later. Friends?"
Ray mirrored Jeff's hand on his shoulder, "Like then, like now, like forever," they swore, then both boys joined the party in the dining room where there was food, friends and fun waiting, their troubles forgotten in the way only the young can do.
Dinner was done, the dishes gone, the cake lit, blown out, and mostly devoured. The adults had left with the last of the cake and had told the boys to hang out a minute and they would be right back.
"Okay, time for presents!" Ray's dad exclaimed as both he and his wife were carrying them into the dining room and placing them in the center of the table.
"YES!" every boy echoed.
"Which one first, which one first..." Ray's dad teased, ranging his hands over the assorted packages.
Ray stood and grabbed the one in purple paper that had "Hands Off!" printed all over it in gold lettering. "This one!" he said, already tearing into the card on the outside. The card was all white, just the word, "Sixteen?!?" on the front, also in purple lettering. Inside was Jeff's name and the phrase "Friends are what friends are, whatever they are, always friends. For my best friend." written by hand. Ray smiled, realizing Jeff came tonight with the intention of smoothing things over. He should have known that. Inside the box was another, smaller box with another even smaller box, all wrapped in the same paper. Ray held the latest one up, about the size of a pack of cigarettes. It rattled in a solid, satisfying way.
"I give up," Ray said, after giving it a few hefts and a shake or two. "Unless, miniatures?" Ray said, smiling, certain that was indeed what was inside. After opening the last box and revealing his accuracy, Ray smiled and said, "Cool, two elf archers! Thanks Jeff!"
"MOM! Do you have to take pictures?!?"
"Yes," she said flatly, as if he had asked if she had to stand on her feet instead of her elbows.
"Happy birthday, Ray," Jeff said, smiling.
Suddenly, Ray realized: Two Elven Archers. Holy shit! No way Jeff meant that! It had to be some coincidence. Maybe some unconscious psychological choice as Jeff had picked out the packages. Had to be! He had started to look at Jeff, out of instinct, to search for some sign, something, that would verify or deny the intentional or accidental coincidence!
"Okay, one for one," Ray's dad said. "Next?"
Across the table, Jeff wore only an ordinary smile. Nothing there to reveal anything.
"This one," Tom said and handed over the box they had closed earlier, before Ray's parents got home. Ray feigned guessing it's contents, but quickly said, "Simple one. Game for the computer," and tore into it. Of course he was right; he already had played it with Tom earlier.
Ray's eyes went back to Jeff, trying to find something there, something revealing. There was nothing but a smile as Ryan slapped the back of Brent's head in payback for the nad shot earlier.
"Two for two," Ray's dad stated.
"And the twins, next, cause I already know what Eric got," Ray said.
"How?" Eric demanded.
"Dude, I can read you like a book! I know exactly what's inside that oversized box!" Ray stated. "Monopoly. He had it in his bedroom last time we stayed over there and he thought he hid it in time!" Ray shook each of the twins identical packages, listening to the sounds they made as he felt the mass and weight. "Yea, too easy! Models! Probably cars, and, probably Fords!" Opening them only proved Ray was correct twice more. One was a fifties Ford pickup, the other a sixty-five Mustang. "Cool! Thanks guys!"
Next was his parents gifts, a shirt with "I'm with dumbass" and an upward pointing arrow, and a 50 pack of new CDRs. The first gift sent all the boys into riots of laughter, with dares for Ray to wear it to school tomorrow.
"Cool gifts, everybody, thanks!" Ray said after verifying that Eric's gift was a Monopoly board game and another FLASH-CLICK had occurred..
"One more," Tom said, handing over a CD sized package in white, snowy Christmas paper.
"What? Two?" Ray asked, surprised.
"Yea, I thought I would surprise you this year," Tom offered, passing over the package.
Surprise me? You always do! Ray thought silently, but said, "Well, either a computer game or music cd," while opening the package. "Hank Williams Junior?!?" Ray exclaimed, trying to seem as if he didn't understand the gift.
"I saw what you keep in your footlocker!" Tom stated, laughing.
My footlocker!?! Ray worried. Tom! You wouldn't!
"Yup. I know what he keeps in that footlocker!" Tom exclaimed to all the guests who had turned to Tom who was now the center of attention. More than once one or another boy had tried to get Ray to open the big, blue footlocker, asked, or at least wondered what Ray kept in it. Ray never, not once, ever opened his footlocker with anyone around.
"What?" came from at least five throats.
"Country music cds, and lots of them!"
Laughter rang out and Ray blushed. It wasn't rude laughter, or teasing, or mean, it was good natured laughter, made even more evident as Eric yelled, "Closet country case!"
"Closet country case!" the rest of the boys mimicked, all laughing.
Ray blushed deeper, laughed, and winked at Tom, who winked back, smiling widely.
"We've heard you playing it, but we didn't think about buying you any," his dad offered. "We didn't know who to buy anyway."
"I heard you singing to one of his songs, so, I knew you liked his stuff, and since that cd just came out, I didn't think you would have it," Tom concluded.
"I don't, and I wanted it, too!" Ray said. "Thanks, Tom, a lot. Well, I guess I have to admit it and come out of the closet. Guys, I'm a country fan!"
More riotous laughter followed. Ray noticed the looks his parents gave each other, then himself. Maybe now would be a good time to really come out of the closet? No. Not now. Just let the party be a good, fun one, I can tell them some other time. Maybe alone, one by one, he thought. He saw Tom shrug and take a long drink of his soda, returning the looks the other boys were aiming his way. Definitely not now. I have to protect Tom. If I come out now, it would mess with him I think. And I don't even want to risk it. No. Not today.
"Well, that leaves one last bit of unfinished business," Ray's dad said. "If you will all follow me boys, mom will get Ray ready," he said gathering the boys into a group and leading them into the kitchen.
"What's this?" Ray asked as his mother put a blindfold over his eyes.
"Your dad and I have a surprise for you, just wait a minute while your dad gets everything ready."
"What? What's going on?" Ray kept asking.
"You can keep asking, it won't do you any good," his mom warned him. "You know, your dad and I almost lost it when they yelled 'closet country case'! I saw his eyes get wider than ever! And I thought I was about to faint!"
"It was, sorta funny, and scary! Do you think I should tell them?" Ray asked, hoping for the best advice his mom ever gave him.
"Honey, I think you should do what feels right. But I don't think right now is the best time, though. Enjoy your birthday party. Worry about that tomorrow."
"Thanks, mom," Ray said. It was, as Ray hoped, some of the best advice she ever gave him, and she always gave great advice
His mom wrapped her arms around him from behind and hugged him tight. "Love you."
"Love you too!" he said, returning the hug.
After a few more seconds his mom said, "Okay, let's go find out," and led the blindfolded Ray through the house.
Ray had seen everyone go through the kitchen door, so he knew he was being led that way. He guessed by the steps and directions his mom led him they were near the table. She stopped him there and spun him around.
"Mom!" Ray complained.
"Just wait," she said slowly.
Ray was turned around and didn't know what way his mom was leading him now. He heard hushed voices and laughter, snickers and urgings to keep quiet. What the hell? he wondered. It was colder, and smelled of gas and oil. He was in the garage, he realized, at about the same time his mom pulled the blindfold off. The garage lights switched on and Ray was facing a large, black, shiny object. His eyes adjusted and he realized he was looking at Tim Miller's van.
"Tim's van?" Ray asked.
"No, your van," his mom and dad said in unison.
"Happy birthday!" the boys all shouted together.
"My?....." Ray said weakly. "My, van? You bought me Tim's van?!?" he cried, touching it. It was real, he could feel the cold metal, the driver's window, the door handle. He could see the black and red velvet interior through the tears welling in his eyes.
Ray's dad grabbed Ray's right hand, holding it at chest height. "Yours," he said, dropping a set of keys into Ray's hand.
"Uh, no way!" Ray said, "No, absolutely way!" he went on, not even noticing the continued flashing of the camera. "I never, not once, ever mentioned this van! How could you know?" Ray asked, looking into his father's face, feeling the tears start down his cheeks and his face grow hot and red in embarrassment of crying in front of his closest friends.
"Well, when you go out riding with your buds, and you stop and oogle this van every time it goes by, your buddies notice!" he explained. "They noticed, mentioned it to us, and we worked a deal with Tim and his dad."
"But, he would never sell it!" Ray exclaimed.
"He had too," Ray's dad explained. "He lost his license for three years for driving drunk, then drove again anyway. He lost it indefinitely then, at least five years, and did a deal where he has to join the army for three years or go to jail for five. He signed up and leaves Monday."
"The army for driving without a license?" Ray asked, knowing full well that wasn't normal.
"He also had some other charges, I didn't ask. Ask Tom, he was the middle man on this deal," his dad said.
"Tom? You managed this?"
"Well, I mentioned it. The van, that is. Your parents asked me to talk to him when they heard he was going away, man. I guess he had open beers, grass, and, um, some other stuff, when he was pulled over last time," Tom finished.
"Wow, I didn't know he was such a, a..."
"Dumbass?" Eric offered.
"Rowdy partier, but, yea, dumb, too, I guess," Ray said, handling the new keys he held with one hand and wiping his wet eyes with the other.
"Now, like I said earlier, you can give us rides, now!" Eric said.
"You knew, too?" Ray asked, incredulous.
"Yup. We all knew," Eric answered, beaming with pride at having kept such a secret, and so well.
"Tom here is probably a bit deeper in trouble, though. He met with Tim this afternoon and directed him here. I guess he missed a couple classes, but his parents said it was worth it, if you help him with his schoolwork, that is," his dad said.
"So, I did see you at the bookstore! That's what you were doing! And that explains your wallet!"
"You found my wallet? I was afraid it was still out there under the snow?" Tom answered.
"I've got it upstairs," Ray explained, turning to look again at his new van. I don't freaking believe it! I got a car! And it's THE VAN! He reached out and opened the driver's door. No lights came on, as those lights were disconnected; one of many things half-done by Tim to the van. I'll fix that no problem! Ray thought gleefully. And the lights in back, and the headers, and the door latches and the side door, and all the little things that needed real fixing. Tim tried, but just didn't have the skills, patience or drive to finish any of the things he had started doing to the van.
"Well, hop in," Ray's dad said, slapping his son on the shoulder. "Why don't you all crawl in, and me and mom will go clean up inside. I took the liberty of putting the ice chest inside with some sodas and some chips. Have a good time, but if that thing starts, you will be able to vote before you touch it again!" his dad warned, smiling.
The whole crew of boys filed into the vehicle, pouring into it through all the doors at the same time. Cries of "Cool!" and "Awesome," and "Neat" emanating from the inside of the van.
"Serious, son, don't start it in here."
"I know, carbon monoxide and about a hundred other chemicals," Ray interrupted.
"I don't know what, but, yea, no starting it. You can wait until tomorrow and we can open the garage door and you can rev it up then, okay?"
"Yea, okay, don't worry. If I started it, you could easy hear it inside, huh?" Ray said, wiping his teary eyes again.
"We are going to talk about that exhaust! We'll leave you alone with your friends for a while, now. Their parents are picking them up in just over an hour, so go have some fun in your van. If you boys come in before their rides get here, your mom and I won't come out here, so you boys can feel alone, okay?" Ray's dad said, hugging him one more time. "And, happy birthday, son," he finished.
"Happy birthday, Ray," his mom said, wrapping him in a tight hug.
"Okay, mom, you'll make me cry again..." Ray said, sniffling
Both parents turned and started to leave, when his mom spoke up, "Oh, I forgot!" and spun around, whipping the camera out and up and drawing a bead on Ray like some Elven archer loading his bow and taking a shot.
"Got it! Another precious face for the album!" she said.
"Sorry, son," his father apologized, shrugging and leading his wife back into the house.
Ray smiled after them, loving them, and turned to climb into his van.
"Dude, let's hear that stereo!" Eric piped up.
"Yea, and have a soda," Ryan said, handing one up.
"Wish we could smoke a doobie in here, to christen it!" Tom stated.
"Ya, right, my parents would smell it no problem!" Ray said, meaning it.
"Yea, but they told you, uh, yea, never mind, duh," Tom said, after remembering Ray didn't want anyone to know what his parents knew. "Just have to wait until you get it on the streets," he added.
"Imagine the sex you could have on this funky bed!" Ryan said, bouncing his butt on the curved, chez style bed filling the back quarter of the van's interior as if fucking someone sitting on his lap.
"Think of the sex that Tim Miller had on this funky bed!" Brent added.
"Ewwwwwwwwwww!" both boys said in unison, rolling off of it.
Don't get me started thinking about the sex Tim and I had on that bed! Ray thought as he put the key in the ignition and turned it until it clicked. He then turned on the radio and the sounds of AC/DC filled the van and the garage.
"Man! He left his CDs in here!" Tom exclaimed upon opening the compartment in the center of the engine cover. "Tons of them! AC, Def, Metallica, Styx, uh, Ray, it's got a bow on it and your name," Tom said, handing it over to him.
Ray stared at the CD in his hands. A blue bow, like for Christmas, was stuck to the plastic wrapping, and the words "Happy Birthday, Ray. From Tim" written in black magic marker.
"I didn't know he even liked you," Eric said surprised, as were all the boys.
"Yea, I guess he did, kinda," Ray answered. "At least, he gave me some CDs to play in the stereo."
"It has a CD player?" Eric asked.
"Put it in?" Tom asked.
"Ewww! Styx is pussies," Brent declared. "Let the radio go, he's got it on the best station and it's better than Styx, any day!"
"It's not the radio, it's a CD, rich boy," Tom answered back.
Ray held onto the Styx CD, not quite knowing how to react. This CD was a secret he and Tim shared. It meant something to the two of them that wasn't anyone else's business. Ray didn't want to listen to Styx right now, especially not this album. And even more especially not in front of the guys.
The boys chatted, laughed and had a great time for the next hour, sharing Ray's thrill at being the first of The Circle to get a car. Not only a car, but the cool, custom van of Tim Miller's. The boys wondered over the sink in a van, and soon had figured out how the pump faucet worked after locating the five gallon plastic tank in the cabinet under the sink. They talked about how easy it would be to fix all the inside lights and get them working again. How new seats, or at least covers, would go a long way in improving the insides. How the black and red upholstery was cool. Who would get the first ride and, of course, who would get the first ride in the bed.
Ray knew that was going to come up sooner or later. He was glad that the guys took it easy on him, or, at least, easier than his parents had done earlier that day. Eric and the twins agreed that Marie, next door, would probably be the first to use the bed with Ray.
"Hay! I don't think Marie is going to be the first, but that isn't any of your business, anyway," Ray warned. "Besides, the way Eric is humping the bed, he is going to be the first, and it will be all alone!"
All the boys laughed, except the target of the joke, who blushed even more violently than Tom and Jeff, sat up and said, "Ya, well, the way you and Tom are going at it, he will be the first back here with you!"
Silence. The barrier had been broken. Eric had discussed the forbidden. Ray and Tom, both in the front seats, silent; Jeff, Brent and Ryan all making various, "ooooo!" noises followed by a few seconds of silence.
"Ain't nothing you didn't do, too!" Ray almost yelled at Eric, was on the verge of doing so.
"Sorry, I didn't mean it," Eric said, downbeat.
"Not like we don't all know," Jeff replied in the following silence.
"What?" Tom and Ray exclaimed simultaneously.
"I said, it's not like we don't all know, anyway," Jeff repeated, slightly louder.
Thump. Thump. Thump.
Ray could feel, not only hear, his heartbeat hammering in his chest. He looked over at Tom, who was as red as anyone had ever seen him. Neither boy knew what to say, or do, how to react to try to save any shred of innocence. Ray locked eyes with Tom, who looked as if he had just seen his own heart ripped from his chest and devoured by some monstrous entity.
"But, forget it. I have the feeling Tom and Ray aren't doing anything we've ain't done, at some time or another," Jeff finished.
More silence. Some nervous coughing.
"Hey, this is a party, not a funeral! So, who cares if Tom and Ray are having some fun? I know what you two get up to in that tree house in your yard," Jeff said by way of shifting the topic and placing the marker onto the offender.
"You don't know crap!" Brent declared defiantly.
"I know all about the notches, and the numbers," Jeff hinted.
Both twins snapped their head toward each other in surprise, mouths agape. They had never looked more alike.
"Notches? Numbers? That sounds interesting," Eric said, hoping to hear more.
"None of your business, carrot-top!" Brent said loudly.
"And none of our business, about Ray and Tom," Eric said, now understanding where Jeff was going.
"So, just forget it," Jeff stated, placing his hand out for a group swear. "What anyone does with anyone, is their business, and none of any one else's," Jeff declared.
"Like then, like now, like always," all the boys swore.
Jeff started another line of discussion with, "And now, I think there is something we should tell Ray, about Friday's party..."
"ME!" nearly everyone screamed at once, startling Ray.
"I will! I reminded you all of it!" Jeff said, calming all the other boys down. "Okay, Ray. Friday, for the party after here? Well, there has been a change of plans. Well, it is going to be just The Circle, just us, after all."
Ray was unsure how to respond. He was glad to hear the girls weren't going to be there, but what about his other friends? There weren't a lot of other friends, just a small hand full, but what about them? "But, what about the other guys? I told them there would be a real party after the one with the parents," Ray said.
"Man, don't worry, we thought of that." Tom explained, cutting Jeff off. "See, were are going to have the party here in the house, then we are going to move everyone here to the garage and the van. I already mentioned it this afternoon to your parents and they thought it was a great idea. They agreed not to even come out the door. But, they said no beer and no crazy stuff. Then, when the party here winds down at ten, and everyone else goes home, we've all got permission to stay the night, so we move the party to the new location."
"Even Todd is staying all night. The whole Circle will meet after the second party."
"And, Jeff has a speech for you. He won't tell us what, but I guess I know part of it," Tom finished.
"And don't ask me anything about the speech! I do know what I want to say, but I am working on how. And no, no hints, no guesses or anything," Jeff stated firmly.
"So, what about after the van party?" Ray asked.
Tom took over again, saying, "We just changed the location. So, we move the party, just The Circle members after everyone else has left, to the new location. It's close, and we can get there on foot or bikes in a couple minutes. Everyone's parents know we are with The Circle there, so it's as usual to them. We will go party, do what we're gonna do, then come home and crash before morning. Your parents still think we are going over to Rob's uncle's house overnight, hell all our parents do, so I gave them the cell phone number, for Jon's phone!" Tom said with a laugh. "He's been answering in a deep voice all week in case they called to check with 'Rob's uncle'," he finished in a reasonable baritone. "So, if anything goes wrong at their houses, we won't be out of touch, so we won't get caught. And if anyone has to be picked up right away, they can be here before their parents even get in their car," Tom continued.
"And nobody's parents have called any of us for ages, so we don't even expect that to be a prob, but just in case," Jeff added.
"Well, if you gave Jon's cell phone number to my parents, he has to be around to tell us someone's parents called, so, Tom's garage?" Ray ventured a guess.
"Pfffffffffft!" Tom hissed. "As if! Come on, if you are going to guess, try better than that! And no one answer!" Tom warned the rest of the boys. "Let him hire Sherlock Holmes!"
Great, now no one will say shit! Ray thought. Okay, fine, I won't guess. Close, only a couple minutes walk or ride, Jon will be there, we can stay overnight, no adults, they can smoke and there'll be liquor? So few choices. "Okay, so everyone else will be here for the parent's party and the van party, but just The Circle for the late party at this mysterious location,?" Ray asked, waving his hands and wavering his voice as he said 'mysterious location', like some old horror flick.
"Right. And we will each give you one clue, to have some fun with your head! You ask each one of us one question that does not require actually telling you the location, get it?" Jeff said.
"Okay, I think so. This is wild! Great idea guys!" Ray laughed. "Okay, so, who do I start with?"
"Me," Jeff said. "Because this game was my idea. So ask one and Tom is next."
"Okay. How many blocks away is it?"
"Bad question. Gives away too much," Jeff declared.
"Fuck. Fine. Ummm, have I been there before?"
Jeff looked to Tom and the rest of the boys for confirmation it was a good question. All nodded. "Yes. Tom is next."
"Okay, Tom. Have I been there with you?"
"Yes," Tom answered, as it gave little more information and did not hint at the actual location. "Eric."
"Okay, E, have I been there before with you?"
Eric immediately looked to Jeff then Tom for permission. "Is that the same question?" he asked them.
Both shrugged before Jeff said it was fine.
"No." Eric answered. He waited before realizing he had to assign the next person. "Oh! Brent!" he said, pointing.
"Okay, uhhh, I've been nowhere the same with you guys, I don't, OH! Have I been there with you?"
"Uh-uh! And do I have to tell you Ryan is next?"
"Nope, and not the same question for you. So, ummm, is it a house or something else?"
"Don't answer that!" Jeff declared. "One question, no multiples," he warned.
"Gotch'ya. Is it someone's house?"
Silence. Ray stared at the floor about a foot away from his feet.
"We can get there in a couple minutes by foot or bike, someone's house we can stay the night at, we can smoke grass there, there will be beer and some other stuff, been there with Jeff and Tom but not Eric or the twins, I've been there before."
"Right on all counts," Jeff answered.
Ray hadn't realized he had spoken the list as he arranged it in his head. "Damn, not getting anything yet," he said purposely.
"You might, yet. Think on it," Jeff suggested.
Oh, I will, damn it! Ray thought. "Okay, I'll let ya's know!"
"Your parents are being cool letting us have the party in the garage and then going out. We don't want to push them and not be back by late morning. You got great 'rents, dude," Jeff said.
"You have no idea!" Tom declared before Ray could agree with Jeff's statement.
True to their word, Ray's parents never came in, but did knock loudly and open the kitchen door to shout over the music that Jeff's mom was here to pick him up. Jeff climbed out and came around to the driver's window, motioning to Ray to lean out.
"Your mom is probably having some coffee, you don't have to leave already..."
"Ray, I'll see you Friday, right after school. I'll be here as soon as I can, you be home then?"
"Yea, I'll be home," Ray said. "Tom will be here too, okay?"
"Yea, sure, fine. I've got something to say to you Friday night. It's gonna be hard, and all, but, yea, the guys all have to hear some of it, too," Jeff said, looking down at his shoes.
"What?" Ray asked, now quite worried.
"Don't sweat it. Just something. You'll see," Jeff said, looking now into Ray's face and eyes.
Those beautiful, blue eyes, Ray thought, once again staring into them, the first time in a very long seeming time. Gawd, I've missed those eyes, Ray thought. Why do I have to be such a fag? "Gee, now I'm not worried, at all!"
"You'll see, just wait. Gotta go, see ya," he said softly, then more loudly to be heard over the strains of Santana, "Bye guys, see ya later!"
The rest of the boys all called out their goodnights as Ray watched Jeff walk toward the doorway. He's so damned, fucking, adorable, Ray thought. Full butt, wide shoulders, big smile and big, soft, round, full lips, bright green eyes, sandy-blond hair, fair skin, strong, tall, sweet...is he loosing weight?
Ray shook his head as Jeff closed the door and returned to his buddies. They all left, Eric next, the twins following shortly, but not after an offhand remark about leaving the 'two love-birds alone'.
"See, that's why I don't wanna do it," Tom explained when it was just the two of them. "Bad enough they tease us about it, now I know they know," he continued.
"I, yea, they do," Ray admitted. Each one of the boys who had just left had done something at some time or another with Ray. Some more than others, some a few times, others quite a few times. One, literally, had fled, screaming into the night from it.
"It's not that I don't like it, man, I really do! And I want to do it. I just, don't want to confuse it with girls," Tom tried to explain. "And I don't want what they tease us about to be real. I guess it already is, sorta, but, not really. And I don't want it to. Is that okay? Do I make any sense?"
"It's okay with me. I don't want them to make fun of me, either. I think I'm going to tell them, soon, anyway" Ray said sadly.
"Maybe, Friday. Jeff, I guess, said, he has something, important, to say then, too. So, I think I will tell the guys, if there is a chance. And don't worry, I will keep you out of it, make it clear you aren't my boyfriend and there ain't nothin' going on, ya know?"
"Yea. Thanks. Hey, man, Jeff, about that, I know what he's going to say, and I promised to not say anything. I guess, lucky, I never swore to it. He never asked me too, either. So, I guess I can, I should, tell you, man."
"No. He mentioned it and said to not worry, so I won't. He didn't want to tell me, so I don't want you to tell me," Ray said.
"It's okay. He didn't tell you because he didn't want you to think on that instead of your party, Ray."
"Is that all?" Ray asked, wanting to know, but not if Jeff didn't want him to know for some other reason.
"Yea, I'm sure. Look, Jeff, he wants to tell us all, and I found out from Todd, that they're moving."
"They're moving to Atlanta, end of the school year. His dad's been down there all year, you know, and his job offered him more money and a promotion to stay there. His mom told them last month," Tom explained.
"Last month?" Ray asked, suddenly making more sense of what occurred that bizarre night with Jeff, as another piece of the puzzle fell into place.
"I thought that might be why he went home that night. He told you and you guys fought or something."
"Oh. I bet he was going to tell me, I know he was, now! And, I, GAWD, I'M SO FUCKING STUPID!" Ray yelled, pounding the steering wheel.
"What?" Tom jumped. He had not seen Ray have a temper outburst in a long time. Ray wasn't the type.
"What I did! I wouldn't let him tell me until after, never mind! I just put him off, and instead tried to rape him!"
Tom was confused. Ray had told him, had in fact pulled the Ice Bridge stunt with him; he knew what Ray meant by trying to rape him. "But, why would that make any difference? His knowing he was going to move and all?"
"It's, just say, probably was, well, never mind. I understand, I think, now, " Ray said.
"See how much trouble sex is?" Tom warned.
"Yea, well, trust me, it's no different with girls!" Ray warned back.
"And how would you know, oh great fairy?" Tom asked, smiling, meaning no harm.
"Because I've seen it, and heard all about it, and trust me, there's no difference," Ray said, seriously enough to convince Tom he knew it for a fact. "Haven't you seen it with Jon? Carol drove him fucking nuts! And he loved it. Then, well, you remember."
"Great..." Tom said, seemingly depressed. "Well, anyway, we need to act more, I don't know, more something around people."
"Less something. Less faggy."
"Yea, less faggy. Sorry," he added.
Ray jumped over the engine cover and acted like he was going to punch Tom. Tom bunched up his fists and made defensive motions with them.
"If you apologize one more time for using faggy, gay or something, I'm gonna kick your ass!" Ray said, smiling and laughing.
"Well, if you weren't a poof, I wouldn't have to apologize for you!" Tom shot back, taking a punch at Ray's extended shoulder.
"Well, if you weren't so cute, I wouldn't have the hots for you!" Ray laughed.
The mock fight ended shortly thereafter, when Ray's dad knocked and said through the closed door, "Almost ten. I think Tom should be heading home!"
"Okay!" Ray shouted back. "See you after school tomorrow," he said, tousling Tom's hair roughly.
"Notice something?" Tom asked, nodding toward the still closed door to the house as he opened the van door to get out.
"What?" Ray said, looking where Tom had indicated, but seeing nothing.
"The door. He didn't open it. He shouted through it, never opened it," Tom explained.
"So?" Ray asked, not understanding. For one second. Suddenly, meaning dawned on him. He looked back at Tom, back at the door, back at Tom. "You fucking noticed. You notice, like everything, don't ya? Do you really think he thought we were, uh, you know?"
"Ya. I see a ton of stuff. Stuff most people just don't notice, all the time. And I don't know, but he didn't open the door, did he?" Tom answered.
"He did open it other times, didn't he?" Ray asked quietly, looking at the door. He swung he head to look at Tom and said, "So, you noticed me looking at the van? And this," nodding toward the door. "And what else?"
"That Jeff still draws your eyes like magnets. And Eric. In fact, all of us. And you look like you know what's under the clothes, like you're remembering."
"Wow. I'm obvious, ain't I?" Ray asked.
"No, you're not. Really. Berry is," Tom said quietly.
"Berry. Marie's last boyfriend? He's obvious..." Tom said surely.
"What? But, he like fucked Marie and blabbed all over school about it. And he's always got a girl!"
"Yes, he did, didn't he? Made sure everyone knew about it, too, didn't he? And he only did it once with her. And he always has a chubbie in the showers, and he checks guys out, and he spends a lot of weekend nights at home with Larry Sanders. And Larry spends a lot of time at his house when Berry's parents are out of town. Just them. No parties, no crowds, no team mates. Just them," Tom finished.
"How the hell do you know?" Ray asked. "Been keeping an eye on him?"
"Since he started dating Marie. I like her too, but I didn't like him. And Berry's house is on our way to school. If you just looked, you would have seen the same things when we rode past, or on weekends when we went to the mall or parks. We go past all the time."
"Jeezus. You should be a detective! You are Sherlock Holmes! Why don't you have good grades, Tom?"
"You know I hate school. And the classes. And just sitting there! Like a prison! I can do the stuff they teach me, I just hate the tests. And the way the treat us. I hate it all," Tom said with some anger in his voice.
"Wow, dude, I know you hate school, but, not that much. Just do better on tests and up your grades a bit. At least so you don't get in trouble for today! What classes you miss to pull this off?"
"English and History. No biggie. I can almost ace the tests if I wanna. Won't be any problems because of today."
"History? Don't you have Higgs for History?"
"Yup, same as you. I got it ninth," Tom said dryly.
"Cool!" Ray exclaimed.
"I gotta help Higgs with his ninth period class a couple days to make up for skipping eighth period today!"
"Hey! So, you can tutor me some and explain my improving grades!"
"Yea. And we can leave school together!"
They shared a quick high five when Tom realized, "You skipped eighth? No wonder you saw me at the bookstore!"
A knock came on the still closed door and Ray smiled conspiratorially, motioning for silence and stealth. He opened the van door and waved Tom to follow as he hopped quietly to the door. He halted at the door as Tom arrived, and just after his dad finished saying...
"Tom, Ray, time for Tom to go home, it's ten o'clock and his mom just called. I don't want her to have to call tw..."
Ray whipped the door open.
"Okay, just coming. I'll turn off the radio, Tom. And your wallet is on my bed. I'll meet you upstairs and you can go home," he said, waving Tom through the open door. "Just be a sec, dad," Ray said to his fathers upraised eyebrows.
Ray went back to the van, turned off the radio and pulled the keys out of the ignition. He noticed the secret compartment, and since the guys were all gone, he checked it then. Cool, wonder what he left in there, probably nothing, Ray thought absently as he opened the hidden latch. Inside was a sheet of writing paper. There was some writing on one side, obviously Tim's, judging by the sloppiness and the spelling.
Back at the door, his dad asked, "What is it son?"
"Just looking around," Ray said crumpling the paper and closing the compartment. His dad couldn't have seen what he was doing, the compartment was behind the driver's seat, out of his line of sight. He held the crumpled note in his hand until his dad was looking the other way and then pocketed it as he entered the kitchen.
Ray ran upstairs and joined Tom in his room where his gifts had been piled on his bed by his parents.
"So, I guess this was one of the things on your mind when you thought there was a surprise party waiting inside?" Tom said, hefting his wallet.
"It was curiouser and couriouser," Ray intoned. "Your wallet in the drive, strange tracks in the snow, footprints all around the door, I mean, come on!" he said as he examined some of the items on the bed.
"Yea, I was wondering what you would notice and not notice. I stayed in front so I wouldn't have any ideas and couldn't give anything away. If I had been behind you, you wouldn't have gotten my wallet this way, either. But I would have seen if you noticed all the marks. I thought about that when I left your house to meet you at the store."
"Pretty slick, pulling all this off," Ray said sidling up to Tom "And, thanks, for everything! You were part of the best surprises. The van, the job, the books, thanks!" he said.
"Yea, well, man, just don't get all mushy on me," Tom said, blushing.
"Actually, I'm gettin' all hard on you, here," Ray said, now blushing as well, his fingertips in his pockets.
"Really? Let's see about that," Tom said, putting his wallet away and walking up to Ray. He reached out with his left hand and cupped the groin of Ray's jeans. After a quick verification, he said, "You are. And I really wish I could give you a good time on your real birthday," he said, still holding a handful of Ray.
The day's roller coaster of emotions continued to give Ray a ride and he said, "Dude, and you say you want to stop!"
"I do, but not cold. I don't want withdrawls!" he said, laughing. "We will have to stop when I start doing this with Helen," Tom declared.
"What? Cupping her balls?" he laughed, then continued, "Ya, sure, you said that like two years ago when we started doing this stuff!" Ray put a reciprocating hand on Tom's groin, finding that Tom wasn't as excited as he was.
"Ya, but, I asked her, and she said ya, and, serious, we're going out after I get my license," Tom revealed, removing his hand from Ray's crotch.
"Oh, fuck, cool!" Ray was really glad for Tom. He had come to terms with the fact that soon, he and Tom would no longer be playing around in their special way. They had spent two years, almost, exploring, learning, teaching, experimenting with each other. They had done everything they could come up with together. Most things they did regularly. It had been a great ride, Ray concluded, as he gave a quick squeeze and release of Tom's package.
"Dude, thanks for the best birthday ever!"
"Well, if we had time I would make it even better," Tom said. "I still can't get over your parents, earlier!"
"I know! And I don't have to worry about it with them anymore, like with you all this time!" Ray exclaimed, overjoyed.
"Don't let the water-works start in again," Tom advised, hugging Ray close. "Happy birthday, Ray"
"Thanks, Tom. You're the best friend any guy has ever had," Ray said, hugging Tom close.
"And you're the best gay friend a guy ever had."
"You better go home before you get into trouble!"
The two boys broke the hug and left Ray's bedroom, heading downstairs to the front door where Ray closed and locked the door behind his buddy. He stood there for a few seconds, smiling to himself, feeling his emotions as they settled down from the events of the day.
Now I know Tom is capable of quite devious thoughts as well as actions, Ray thought. He broke many of my beliefs that I knew him intimately, totally and completely. Turns out, I missed a huge part of Tom's character. Several, in fact. Wonder what else I'm missing in him, and other people?
As Ray turned to go up the stairs and to his room he paused, instead walking down the hall past the stairs and around to his parent's bedroom door. It was open, his mom sitting in bed with a book, his dad coming out of the bathroom.
"You know, I told my friends tonight that I'm richer than any of the rich kids at school. I got the best parents, the best friends and the best life of anyone I know," he declared, trying not to cry. He wanted to be more adult than that, not their little kid, but their young man. "I wanted to say thanks, again, for the van. And about Tom, and the grass, and trusting me, and not treating me like some stupid kid."
"We still don't know what we did to get you, Ray. You're already smarter in school than we ever were, you were special when you started school and got mad at how stupid the books were. You were special when you proved more adult at your age than we were at yours. And you surprise us from time to time, too. And we love you, gay, straight or somewhere in between. Just as long as you know what makes you happy and you go for it," his dad said to him.
"Thanks. For the party, the van, everything," Ray said, holding back sniffles.
"Love you, Ray," his mom said, blowing a kiss like she did for special reasons.
"Good night, love you guys," Ray said, closing the door.
Upstairs, getting ready for bed, Ray was aglow with the weight of so much secrecy and stress removed from his life, stresses he didn't even realize were crushing down on him.
What an awesome day! I'm sixteen! And my parents knew about me! And Tom. They were okay with it. His parent knew he was gay and they were okay with it! They knew he smoked grass, and they were okay with it. They trusted him. They believed in him. They loved him. Nothing else mattered.
He felt as light and free as he could ever remember feeling. As if no bad thing could tarnish him, could rise high enough to even touch him. He felt as if a jerk-off would seem an anti-climax; a sad attempt to improve a perfect day. He was too tired anyway, and besides, it will be all the better for the waiting, he knew.
Things were too perfect, he thought, as he undressed and got ready to crawl into bed. He heard the paper crinkling in his pants pocket and remembered the note from the secret compartment in the van. He pulled the page from the pocket, un-crumpled it and began reading:
Thanks for advice and nice doing busines with you. I told Billy to give you good deals he will be taking over. Tell him I said thirty bucks and not a penny more unless it was really kick ass stuff. I told him if he coses you troble I will kick his ass for you. Take care of my van or I will kick you ass! Im glad to sell it if you get it. See you in a few years. If I get back into busines I hope you will still be my favorite custamer and I want a ride in your van some day.
Tim Miller had pretty much said he liked the things he and Ray did in the back of his van, and hinting strongly he would want a repeat when he got back, again in the van. And he had bought a copy of the CD they had listened to that first night, making a gift of it and about a dozen other CDs, all of which they had played as Ray paid. Wow, and I thought Tim was only desperate for sex! he realized. He really liked it.
And Billy would be supplying his grass from now on. That was better than Keith. Ray hated Keith. Keith always had a smirk and snide comments for Ray, almost as if Tim had told him how Ray paid for the almost weekly baggies of pot. And Keith was scary, like an ex-con, or a murderer in the making. Billy was cool and treated Ray like a younger kid, but at least it was in a friendly way. And Billy was probably the most honest of Tim's crew.
And the cutest, Ray thought. I wonder if I could make the same arrangement with Billy? Naw. Though Billy didn't have a girlfriend... Naw, no way. Billy would never go for that! That is why Tim mentioned the thirty bucks in the letter. Better not scare off your dope dealer, Ray chided himself.
That led to another set of thoughts firing off in Ray's mind, that Jeff didn't hate him and was coming back for Friday for sure. And they were buds again! Another weight off Ray's back. Then another weight slammed down on him to replace it. Jeff was moving! When?!? I don't know when! Or where! Alabama? Shit! Georgia? Damn it, how could I forget? Tomorrow! I'll find out tomorrow at school, from someone, something. All of it by lunch. Moving!
Tomorrow! He had to work in the bookstore after school! His first day! He was looking forward to it. And he had to help Mr. Higgs in his ninth period class next week. Tom's class. That could be cool!
Now his mind raced with the fact that the whole Circle was onto Ray and Tom. Nothing to do about that, now, Ray figured. It was so embarrassing, but what could he do? He had been with all of them in the past, and would do it with any or all of them again if they wanted or he could talk them into it. He liked it the most obviously. He had to tell them he was gay. It felt like he was lying to them, not telling them. He wanted to feel that same relief he felt after his parents' talk earlier today. That same sense of pressure relieved, of openness and cleanness.
Tom had pointed out the fact that dad probably thought the two of them were 'busy' in the van! Surprised dad, though, with Tom's help! Damned doors! Ray thought. Keeps coming back to doors. One door closes, another opens. Doors, doors and doors. It kept coming around to doors. Especially that long Saturday, that first day of sexual playing with Tommy. Damn, I haven't called him Tommy in years. Not since back then.
Ray reflected on the apparent fact that it only took him and Tom some 24 hours to get caught by his parents, twice, because of doors.
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