"Chris, man, ya ok? Ya haven't said anything for the last five minutes!" OK, that would be somebody talking to me. I pushed my thoughts to the back of my mind for a second.

"Yeah, sure Luke, I'm OK, just thinking, that's all. Last day of break and all that..."

"Oh, just don't. Total tragedy."

"Well, it'll be cool to see everyone again, I suppose."

"Yeah, but not so good to see Randall..." Mr. Randall, our principal, possibly the biggest asshole in the world... like ever.

"No kidding. I swear he hates me."

"Ha, I wouldn't worry about it...I think he hates everyone equally. How he got to be principal of a school if he hates kids that much, I will never know."

Ok, I suppose I better explain. My name is Chris Robinson. No, not THE Chris Robinson, of Black Crowes fame, just plain old me. My birthday is June 11th 1985 and tomorrow, I'm going to my first day of sophomore classes at Gold Beach High School. Sounds exotic, maybe, but that's the last thing it is, trust me. Gold Beach, Oregon is the place where I was born, the place where I was brought up, and the place where I have lived the whole of my 15 years and 3 months. In short, I'm bored with it. Summers don't seem to be quite as interesting and exciting as they used to be.

"3 months, gone like that! Man, what have we done with it? I remember thinking 'hey, that's school done for ages,' but oh no..."

"Well, um...um...there's the beach...and there was Lisa's party and..."

Hell, I had no idea where all the time had gone. I mean, we practically have the town to ourselves and the beach is cool, people have parties and that, but lying on a beach all summer is not my idea of an exciting time, and once you've seen your friends throw up on themselves 5 times, it gets real, real old! I'm sure you know the kind of thing I'm talking about, ya know, being free, but not actually having the money to do anything much. Not that my family is poor or anything, just that my money seems to find ways to spend itself. I spend practically all of it on CDs, guitar stuff, or putting it into the bank, saving for my first car, when I hit 16. Basically, all I've done this summer is hang at the mall or the beach, or train for the new basketball season. Sad but true - I have to train over summer break, or so says my coach, anyway. I play center for my school team, and I had always thought I was ok before I got to High School. In my freshman year, though, I found I was better than nearly all of my grade, so I was in the team. 11 starts, about 140 points with a game best of 28 - not too bad for a center, if I say so myself.

But, it was now about 9pm on the last night of summer break, and me and my best friend, Luke Macauley, were sitting in my bedroom in the basement of my family's 2 storey house. We'd even managed to sneak some beer down to ease the pain, but even the buzz from the alcohol couldn't counteract the depression that the impending return to school cast over us.

Luke stood up slowly, a look of resignation on his face. "Anyway, I guess I better jet, man, it's getting late. I gotta get ready and, well, I wanna get some sleep before tomorrow."

"Ya sure you don't wanna stay? My mom and dad don't mind, you know that." And it's true, they don't. My mom and dad are great about that kinda thing. They seem to understand about the whole teenager thing.

"Nah... I need to sleep. Any other day... "

"Sure, you're right, I guess."

He stretched and yawned, showing his perfect teeth, so white they shone, even in the relative darkness of my room. Ok, you could ask why I notice that kind of stuff about my best friend. Well, I'm gay, ok? I don't really think of Luke that way. I mean, I've known him for so long he's practically the brother I never had, but I've always noticed good-looking guys, ever since I was young. And Luke certainly was that! About 5'9", 145 pounds, with short blond hair and blue eyes that positively sparkled when he smiled. As a result, nearly all the girls in our grade wanted to get up close and personal with him in one way or another, but he seemed perfectly content to fly solo, for now at least. For that, I kinda respected him, how cool he was with all of the female attention directed his way. Not to say that I hadn't had my share of girls interested in me, and even gone out with a few. Hell, I had a girlfriend for a few months, but...nah, just isn't me. Anyway, no-one, including Luke, knows about me, and I don't think I could even go out of the house if it was any other way! I'm sure not gonna tell him unless I ABSOLUTELY have to!

Anyway, Luke and I went up the stairs, down the hall, and I let him out the door (he only lives 100 yards down the street - another reason why we've been friends forever, I suppose). I leaned back against the wall, covering my eyes with my hands. Shit! No more time off...not for another few months anyway...

"What's up, honey?" My mom must have heard me bang up against the wall or something, and she came out into the hall.

"One guess..."


"How did you know?"

"Parental intuition."

"Uh, right...I dunno, I just don't wanna."

"No one wants to Chris. Even your dumb old mom didn't want to go, back when we had to ride dinosaurs to school."

"Huh? Oh..." I grinned a little at that, even though it really wasn't that funny.

"I wouldn't worry about it, really, Chris. Sophomore year isn't as bad as they all say. You got the difficult bit out the way last year, and it's not like you dealt with it that badly, is it?"

"I guess not...still not looking forward to it, though."

"Son, I don't know many people your age who do look forward to school. It's just one of those things you've got to get through. And you will, because...well, mainly because you're your father's son." True enough. My father doesn't let anything beat him for long. "Now, go to bed. I don't want to have to drag you up those stairs in the morning!"

"Ok mom." I ducked through the door, shutting it behind me, and ran down the steps to my room, running from my mom's goodnight kiss. Well, c'mon, how many 15 year olds like that, huh? I crossed to my CD collection, scanned for a second, and picked out Led Zeppelin's Physical Graffiti, putting in CD 1 and flicking across to 'Kashmir.' I lay back on my bed, letting the music just wash over me, trying to relax. Cool song, but it only served to deepen my depression, making me realize what was ahead of me, and how long it would be before I got another break like the one I had just squandered doing not nearly enough, just hanging around town with Luke and pissing people off (I'm good at that!). Just thinking about having to go back to the prison I'd left behind 10 weeks before sent me down, back to all the homework, all the assholes. And back to basketball practice. Don't get me wrong, I love playing basketball! Hell, I play for the school, after all, but I simply can't stand hanging around with all the meathead jocks there are at my school. You know, all the fake macho shit, all the inane locker room crap, and most of all, one of my team mates.

Mark Masters, one of our point guards. About 6'4", 190, not really fat, just pretty solid muscle, which made him scary to say the least. And just about the worst complement to that, a really bad attitude. Not just that, but he's now dating my only ever ex, Martina, and he sure wasn't afraid to let me know about what they got up to. Well, there's not much I can do about that, as when I last saw them, they were all over each other. Yeah, sure, it hurts a bit, but hey, I've never really been into girls anyway! She can go to hell, as far as I'm concerned, and he certainly can!

Kashmir wound down so I clicked off the stereo, checked I had all the stuff I needed for the next day, books, pens and that, you know the kind of thing. Yep, all ready, so I set my alarm for 6am with a heavy heart. I changed, taking a quick shower before hopping into my king size bed. See, having the basement is cool - I get the biggest room in the house and I managed to get myself pretty much the biggest bed in the house, which would be way cool if I actually had anyone to share it with...

I tossed and turned for what seemed like ages, but I just couldn't get to sleep. I dunno, there's just something about the last day of holidays that gets to me. All I could think about was school, which sure is a rare thing for me! I just knew something strange was going to happen. I just had absolutely no idea what.

Copyright Hayabusa 2000

This story, unsurprisingly, contains scenes of love and sex between teenage boys. If you don't like the idea of that, I don't know why you're here. All characters in this story are completely fictional, and any resemblance to any persons, living, dead, dying, being born or yet to be born is purely coincidental and their own stupid fault.

Many thanks to Chris G for editing this, Chris, I don't know if you will ever truly understand how truly indebted to you I actually am. Once again, thanks for Turnabout, and all the help you've given me. Thanks also to Nifty for being the incredibly cool and generous people they are.

One last thing - if you like the story, please feel free to go to my website at http://hayabusa2001.tripod.com/ or to email me at hayabusa17@hotmail.com.