Disclaimer: I own all characters thus they are copyrighted to me. All lyrics belong to their respecive owners. I'm only borrowing them. This story is not to be copied or posted elsewhere without permission from the author. This is a psuedo-true story with some embellishments about homosexual teens and love. If you are underage or find such material offensive stop reading now. There is nothing sexually explicit in this chapter but there will be in subsequent chapters.
Thanks so much to all who responded, it is very encouraging to know the story is appreciated. The feedback helps motivate me to write. Any and all feedback positive and negative is welcome at firstname.lastname@example.org. I will continue to respond to all e-mails.
"Mr. Sandman, bring me a dream. Bum-bum-bum-bum. Make him the cutest that I've ever seen. Give him a lonely heart like Pagliacci and lots of wavy hair like Liberace." Okay, so maybe not like Liberace, but close enough. School had started again and I am now a mighty, mighty junior, running into Nick Revere wherever I go on campus. It is yet another typical sunny California day, and I am sitting outside with my friends enjoying the almost-crisp autumn air for an hour before I end up back in class. Danny is sitting around making wisecracks and annoying the girls, Lauren is being especially militant about her liberal feminist, environmentalist, animalist views, and Greg is singing, barely on-key, because his next class is choir and he is close to being the first person to ever not ace the course. "Mr. Sandman, I'm all alone. I need somebody to call my own. Please turn on your magic beam. Mr. Sandman, bring me a dream." Honestly, he could just move his lips and not sing like half the choir does anyway, but for some reason he is an idealist. I think it's funny how the guys have to sing harmonies to songs like "Mr. Sandman." As for me, I'm sitting as close to paradise as I can while in school, without a care in the world save for that I'm desperately lonely and am about to explode from holding back on talking so I won't sound gay.
With a sigh, I lay back like a salamander on the warm stone bench and try to push the thought from my mind. I don't have much time to relax for it isn't long before Parker comes along, blocking my sunlight. "Hey," she starts as I try to slither back into the sun, "just so you know you're taking me to homecoming." Well at least this time she's letting me know in advance. That's definitely an improvement although I still don't have a choice in the matter. "Oh and I've been asking around for you and I'll have a surprise waiting," she finished with a wink. Parker always has something suspenseful to hold back, and I've learned to just not ask since I know she won't tell and rather sadistically revels in my unanswered queries. Besides, her surprise can't be all that amazingly stupendous. Her last 'surprise' involved an impromptu trip to the mall and all the money I made from my summer job, where she made me try and buy all kinds of clothes I know I don't need. Come to think of it, all her surprises are usually a little pricey and a lot painful for me. So really, I should be dreading any sort of surprise she has planned.
Before I know it, the dance is upon us, and for some strange reason, they're holding it in the English Department building instead of the gym, with students milling around in the halls and classrooms. So this is a novel idea, having kids running amok in the school instead of herding us all into a controllable space. It's just as bad as I anticipated when Parker and I arrive. Part one of her surprise involved us wearing our pajamas, since that was the theme, and Parker had bought me some sexy, black silk pajamas. While all the other girls looked like a Victoria Secret catalog, Parker actually had a pair of matching pajamas like mine that were cut for a girl but still covered everything up.
We mingled for an hour and I received a lot more attention than usual from the girls, probably due to Parker's influence on my hair and clothes. After a while though, I start getting bored and had no one really to talk to since Parker ditched me to hang out with some of her other friends. I'm ready to leave so I stand off to the side in front of one of the end classrooms and start scanning the hall for Parker. Standing in front of a door was probably a bad decision because a moment later someone stumbles into me taking us both into the dark and empty classroom.
I had the wind knocked out of me and heard a muffled curse as the lights suddenly snapped on. It took me a moment to recover from the impact and adjust to the harsh fluorescent lights, but when I did, I realized I was sprawled out on the floor looking up at none other than Nick Revere with all rational thought escaping my mind. His brow furrows over honey-brown eyes and he straightens out his clothes, looking very harassed. I'm way too shocked that this is actually happening to say anything and Nick Revere is preoccupied with himself, so he stands there for a full two minutes before noticing me on the floor in front of him.
As soon as he noticed me, his expression softened, "Oh hey man, I'm so sorry." He continued apologizing as he extended a very well toned arm out to help me to my feet. "I totally didn't see you there," now he was mumbling softly as we were pulled face to face, "you should have said something."
Standing that close to him, forced eye to eye, I couldn't tear my gaze away. I managed a shy "uh-huh" in response. I shamelessly draw my gaze all over his face, memorizing his every feature as I realize I may never have this opportunity again. His perfectly manicured hair frames the incredibly baby-soft looking skin of his face. It seems that adolescence is being kind to him, as there isn't a single blemish to mar his porcelain beauty. A slight blush just kisses his cheeks pink and his full red lips are moist with his heavy breath. I can't help but lick my own lips at this sight and when I do, I hear his breath hitch and my head snaps up bringing our eyes to meet. For some reason he looks apprehensive and a little guilty, like a little boy caught doing something he shouldn't. When his breathing finally resumes, I feel his soft exhales on my own newly wet lips. Nick Revere recovers himself and gradually draws himself closer to me, his eyes heavy and half-lidded. Like a magnet I move to meet him halfway, scared to watch but not wanting to miss the visual proof. The time we take to cross that distance seems to take an eternity. My heart almost stops from the wild anticipation. I still can't grasp how this all happened. More than anything I want to feel Nick Revere's soft, sweet lips dancing with mine but all of a sudden he stops.
There is a loud ringing like someone pulled a fire alarm. Confused, I turn to Nick Revere, but he is frozen, not moving or saying anything. Suddenly the lights fade and dim, and as I open my eyes and fumble around, the fire alarm turns into the ringing of my alarm clock. Hitting the shutoff button on the clock, I fully wake up.
Damn. The dreams were getting worse. It was only a month since the travesty that was our conference call. School hadn't yet started and it was still the end of July, but in my own little dream world, Nick Revere reigned. That was the most vivid dream of him that I experienced to date, but every other dream was still just as frustrating. I'd wake up sweating after he'd touch my shoulder in the hallway or whisper something flirtatious in my ear in the middle of class. He'd invite me to a pool party where he'd be wearing nothing but Speedos or I'd have him on my bed in my room while trying to tutor him in trig. But never before had either of us gotten that close to intimacy. These night encounters were becoming disruptive to my days, since even though I was getting enough sleep at night, rarely if ever was it restful anymore.
I had such a wonderful Prince Charming leading me through exquisitely Sisyphean dreams that bordered on being the most sweetly haunting nightmares. The bags and black circles around my eyes grew more prominent every day and I was subjected to each tortuous night of desire. At least in your dreams you're supposed to be fulfilled, to will your subconscious into granting whatever you want. But for some reason, my mind left itself unquenched. Sometimes I would have to laugh at myself for wanting something so bad that deep down I know could never have. How ludicrous was I to still believe in my own private fairytale, clutching childishly to the belief that my Prince Charming would deign from his pedestal to ride into my dull and dreary life atop his white charger just to whisk me away? But no matter how much I told myself how stupid my wants were, how unbelievable my dreams, I could not deter my heart from embracing a fantasy it could never turn real.
Back in the real world, a lot was actually changing for me. The end of July was my sixteenth birthday, and that meant a driver's license and a beautiful new Camaro courtesy of my parents. Miraculously I didn't choke during the test and passed, which meant a whole new level of freedom for me. . My newfound freedom from my car also came with responsibility. I had a nice new car but the tradeoff was that was the last major gift I would be getting from my parents before college. They cut off my allowance and it was pretty much, "Well you have a car and that is a reliable means of transportation so if you want to eat you should probably use that transportation to find a reliable source of income." I pretty much expected that treatment from them, being the fiscal hermit crabs that they were, and actually I was relieved that they didn't charge me rent. However getting a job was easier said than done. In the middle of summer, no one wants to hire a sixteen-year-old without experience when there are perfectly good college students home and seeking summer employment.
Despite Parker's attempts and protests, my birthday passed with little fanfare, just a quiet dinner and cake at home. I was relieved, not having to worry about being amidst a crowd of people with all the attention on me. This still didn't deter Parker from getting me a pair of black silk boxers and a keychain. She signed the birthday card with a wish that I get laid and soon because out of all her gay friends, I was the least entertaining. Over the summer, since I didn't see her in school every day, Parker took to only talking to me on instant messenger. Regardless of my new car and ability to come pick her up, she preferred a cyber-friendship and I supposed I could accept that as being more comfortable for her. I didn't really hang out with my other school friends either since they lived nearer to school and thus a thirty-minute drive away. As it was, we still couldn't decide on what to do when we hung out anyway.
So halfway through my summer, I was still a loser, still looking for a job, and no love life save for an overactive subconscious. Suddenly, growing up wasn't so much fun. The only person I saw with any regularity was Amy, and even though she was a year younger than me she did have a social life as well as the looks, style, and people skills to maintain it. The one accurate part of my dream life was that right after coming out to them, Parker and Amy systematically emptied out my savings account at all the different malls turning me into their little gay dress-up doll. I wonder how Cinderella's fairy godmother was at budgeting, because mine needed to take some notes.
With Parker absent from my daytime, Amy started checking in with me with more regularity, and the only reason I saw sunlight was because Amy saw fit to drag me from my room to go to the beach, and picnics, and barbecues and all the things normal people do. To her credit, Amy did keep the matter of my sexuality between us and no one ever asked why I wasn't hounding after the girls, which was just fine with me. Because of her intervention, I was initiated into a whole new social circle, and despite my still quiet nature, I was accepted into her little group of friends from Tremont. It was nice to actually have people from my hometown to hang out with but the differences between this group and my high school friends was evident from their lifestyles. My newfound friends were just as happy and enriched as my friends across the bay despite their not having as much access to money. The two groups never intermixed. Imagine my surprise then, when, a week after I got my license, Amy told me we were going to a party across the bay in Corazon.
"Come on," Amy commanded one Saturday morning as she dragged me from my soft, warm bed to the floor. I was still unused to having her walk over to my house at ungodly hours of the morning just to give me a wake-up call. I groaned, having landed heavily on my shoulder, while Amy finished her order, tapping her foot impatiently, "we need to go shopping. You need board shorts."
That prompted another groan and resentful mumbling, but I was sure not to say anything discernable, having been subject to Amy's wrath the last time I refused to go shopping. Standing up gingerly and running my fingers through my messy, tangled hair, I asked her the obvious, "Why do I need board shorts? You made me buy some last time we went to the beach."
Amy gave an exasperated sigh as she answered, "We're going to a pool party at three and you need to impress."
"You mean to tell me that those $20 swim trunks you made me buy aren't going to impress anyone? I thought the whole point of these shopping trips was to get me better style."
"Well yes, those are a good start and a nice basic everyday pair but the party we're going to is some rich kid's birthday at his mansion over in Corazon and you need to look good." I only had time to grab a clean tee shirt and jeans as Amy started pulling me out the door.
I almost missed that with my tee-shirt wrapped around my head, but as she was shoving me into my car, I had to ask, "Who do we know in Corazon?"
"We don't. Deidre is dating some guy from over there and this guy he knows is having his big ol' birthday party and it's pretty much open to everyone." Deidre was one of my new friends from Tremont and she always seemed to have a new sketchy guy. I was happy for her as it seemed she was moving up in the world.
"Yeah, okay, but why are we going?"
Amy looked at me, as she often does, as though I were two, "We are going because we want to meet the cute rich guys who live across the bay, get married and live happily ever after off of our first husbands' trust funds."
Well obviously. Why didn't I see that before? We got to the mall and Amy picked out a bright baby blue based floral pair of board shorts and matching tank top from American Eagle that I was sure would draw attention to my very pasty complexion. Amy, my "date" coordinated with a yellow mini-bikini I didn't approve of but wasn't about to risk my neck over.
Before we left the mall, I had to ask, "So are we bringing a birthday present or what?"
"Well I don't know whose birthday it is, do you?" I shook my head in response. ""Well we don't want to offend anyone by bringing an inappropriate gift so no, we're not bringing anything." I could always count on crafty little Amy to justify her cutting corners, "besides, there'll be enough people there that no one will notice us and our lack of present."
It wasn't long before we found ourselves on the highway to Corazon, the hot July sun beating down through the windshield onto our bared skin. And after passing my school and series of turns up a winding mountain road, we were looking for public parking outside the wrought-iron gate to what could only be called a palace. About an hour late due to traffic and bad directions, there were no good spaces left and Amy was becoming cranky, as we had to trudge up a hill to get to the front gate. I was actually admiring the redwoods surrounding us and trying to ignore the impending doom creeping up the pit of my stomach at the thought of people.
Amy and I followed the sound of blasting music and party noise around the mansion to the back yard where the party was already in full swing. The yard was as sprawling as the mansion imposing with an iron fence separating the clearing from the redwoods. Snacks and drinks were set up buffet style off to the side, a DJ was mixing on a large outdoor sound system, and in the middle of everything lay a gigantic pool. I was in awe, trying to drink in everything, but Amy wasted no time in socializing and introducing herself to everyone. There must have been close to fifty people already there, playing lawn games, hanging in the pool or by the food, or just talking. More people were arriving by the minute and everyone was rich, gorgeous, and flaunting it. There weren't any imperfections that couldn't be fixed with a parent's love and credit card. I didn't even know Burberry made swimwear. Everything was simply overwhelming to me. As soon as I was sure Amy lost track of me, I slunk off to the side of the house where I was sure no one would be.
I was mistaken, and collided with the person who had the bright idea to hide there before I did. I kept my balance but he was knocked to the ground. He didn't seem too put off by it and got up, brushing himself off. His eyes were the last of him that left the ground and as they found their way up to meet mine, he just uttered an, "Oh, hey."
I "hey"ed him back and took stock of the guy standing in front of me. He was about three inches taller than me so that probably put him around 6'1" or 6'2" and had a mop of curly auburn hair that wasn't cut too short. I also noticed that he was wearing the exact same board shorts I was, meaning some girl must have had her way with him, dragging him off shopping as well. The difference between us was that while I was hiding my skinny figure in a shirt, he had muscles and a tan and didn't need to cover those up. When our eyes finally met, I was struck by their depth and intensity. I'm sure most people would have considered them unremarkable or even plain, but for some reason, I'm just captivated by random people's eyes finding some profundity where others see nothing. The poor guy looked as overloaded as I was but beyond that, he looked bored.
The mystery guy broke the long, contemplative, and I'm sure boring silence with a customary greeting. "I'm Mike," he mumbled before jerking out his hand.
"Josh," I replied trying to sound as masculine as I could. We gripped each other's hands and pumped very mechanically exactly three times before releasing and dropping them back to our sides. Another awkward silence passed.
"So 'sup," he started.
"Not much, man. You?" I replied hoping I was right.
"Not much," we were both halting in speech, "you enjoying the party?"
"Oh yeah, totally," damn, that was unconvincing. I should have been more enthusiastic.
He started to move past me while issuing a departing comment, "I should probably pay my respects to the birthday boy." And with that, he walked around me and was gone.
I just stood for a minute collecting my thoughts, alone now as I had originally intended. I believed that encounter had gone very well. I met someone on my own for the very first time and managed introductions if not clumsy ones. I talked to another guy and a butch one at that and he wasn't calling me a pansy or a fag or anything, so I must have done something right. Pulling myself together and filled with my newfound confidence, I went to rejoin the party.
To be continued