21. Breaker Zone

When it finally happened, it came from an unlikely source.

It was a Sunday in mid-October. Earlier that afternoon we'd lost a double-overtime heartbreaker--on penalty kicks--against our main rival in the conference. I was pissed off because I hadn't played well, and I didn't want to go back to my dorm room: halfway through the game Coach Miller had benched me, and he'd sent in my roommate Trey to replace me. Coach had recruited midfielders heavily the previous spring, so we were crowded at that position; that meant the freshman midfielders always had to compete with each other for playing time. I'd pretty much started every game, and Trey was constantly bitching and moaning to me about it, giving me his in-depth analysis concerning why he should be starting instead of me.

He'd played great after Coach pulled me, scoring twice, even though we'd lost. I wasn't interested in hearing him gloat after the game. I was walking back toward the dorms, wondering who I could hang out with until I got my head right so I wouldn't have to talk to him. I'd cleared out of the locker room without showering; I wasn't interested in spending any time letting people rip on me for my performance. I figured I'd hang out in the dorm lobby and watch a little TV until I was fit to be with people.

I'd just reached the front steps when I heard someone call out to me from behind.

"Sucks, don't it?"

It was Dean. I shut my eyes for a minute and took a deep breath. Lord, give me patience.

I turned around and bumped knuckles with him, working to be sociable. "Fuckin' blows goats is what it does."

He laughed. "Dude. You were blowin' goats."

"Well, thanks, Coach," I said, scowling. "Because I'm too stupid to know without you telling me."

"You probably lost the game for us. You turned it over for crucial plays five times. Two of those led to scores. You stunk it up out there."

Dean was a junior; I was somewhat obligated to take this shit from him. And aside from that, he was right. Still, I didn't like it.

"Anything else you need to share with me?"

"Nah, that was enough, don'tcha think?" I tried to be irritated, but Dean's grin rarely made that possible.

He clapped a hand on my shoulder. "Look, man, it happens to all of us. You were overdue. Don't let it get to ya." He pulled the front door open and motioned me inside. "I gotta get some class notes from The Wiz." David Wizner was the head resident of my dorm. "Then I'm going home. Why don't you come over? I'm guessin' you're not exactly in the mood to be with your roomie. We can hang and play some Sixty-Four. I got FIFA World Cup '98 and I suck. It'll make you feel better to whup my ass all over the field. I gotta fridge fulla beer too."

I had a Nintendo 64 too, and I'd practiced plenty on FIFA World Cup. Dean lived a short walk off campus, and the offer was tempting. It beat spending time with the guy who got me benched. "Sounds good to me, long as I don't have to talk to your damn roommates," I said. "I'm not feelin' real social." Greg Whitmore thought he was a comedian on the order of Chris Farley, and Miguel da Silva, our hotshot Brazilian forward, was just plain annoying.

"Not a problem," he replied. "I just called Greg. He's over at his woman's place--he'll prolly spend the night there, like always. And Mikey was going to the library after he showered up. He said he'd be there till they threw him out, so unless you're planning on staying 'til two in the morning, you won't even have to see 'em, let alone talk to 'em."

"I'm in," I said, turning toward my hallway. "When you're done with The Wiz, come get me. I gotta shower."

"Naw, man," he said, frowning. "I don't wanna hang around for that. This'll only take a minute. Just grab some shit to change into. You can shower at my place. But hurry up."

When I got to my room I grabbed some clothes and stuffed them into my gym bag; Trey wasn't back yet. Then I met Dean on the front steps.

* * * * * * * * * * *

At college, "a fridge fulla beer" usually meant Coors Light or some other swill; Dean had two cases of Negra Modelo. I'd never had any before and was seriously impressed by it.

By sunset, we'd both showered and changed. I'd put on a pair of blue Umbro soccer shorts and a white T-shirt; he'd dressed in jeans and a polo shirt. I'd been kicking ass and taking names at FIFA, and we were through a couple of pizzas and about a six-pack each, when Dean put down his controller, turned to me out of the blue, and deadpanned, "So what's it like to be hot for guys? When you like dick, is it the same as when you like pussy?"

My heart fell into the pit of my stomach. This kind of shit had come up in joking ways every now and then in the locker room since the team had found out about Kyle, and about me. But this was a one-on-one, and something about Dean's facial expression belied the laugh that followed his question. He'd been one of the guys who'd originally voted to boot Kyle off the team, and I wasn't expecting this from him. I didn't need a damn confrontation over my sexuality tonight.

I couldn't think of what to say, and he wasn't helping me. We stared at each other for a few seconds. Neither of us spoke.

I got no clue from looking at his face. I didn't know if he really wanted to know something, or if he was just trying to give me a hard time, or if he was looking to throw down a lot of moral talk about how depraved I was. But his silence was exasperating me.

I finally said, "I can take bullshit as good as the next guy, but if you're fuckin' with me, I'm not in the mood, so maybe I should just go."

He reached under the TV stand and grabbed the soccer ball that was lying there. As he talked he passed it back and forth from one hand to the other, a study in nonchalance. "I'm not fuckin' with you, Andy," he said. "Don't get so defensive. You know I don't care about your...what you like and what you don't. I just thought maybe you could...could tell me a little more about it since it's just the two of us. I never talked to a guy who...well, you know. I'm interested. I mean...not interested, okay? I just wanted to know more. I wasn't trying to give you a hard time."

As I tried to work out how to respond, he kept fidgeting with the ball, looking at me expectantly.

Fear and self-loathing hadn't served me well in the past year, and here in college those things were slowly being replaced. One of the ways I'd begun to deal with realizing I was bisexual was to develop and harbor a suspicion that there were a good number of "guys like me" who could go there. I wasn't certain on that theory, but if what my Dad had told me about himself was true, there were a lot more guys than people realized who'd at least thought about it. And not just gay or bi guys.

After all...

Consciously I hadn't thought anything about testing that suspicion. I had decided that somewhere along the line I wanted to try being with a guy again, but I wasn't out to convince the entire population of straight guys that they'd enjoy dick. I'd assumed I'd eventually try getting with a gay or bi guy. Still, my subconscious must have been working that straight-boys-can-go-there theory out at some level, because somewhere in the silence between the two of us, a plan came fully-developed into my head, one that I thought could show a few people that they and I weren't so different after all. Starting with Dean.

I motioned him up from the floor by the TV, where we were sitting, and over to the couch. I had an idea. I had a couple of ideas, actually, but how they played out depended on what happened next. "Okay," I said. "I'm gonna take you at your word. But I don't think I can explain it in words so much. Maybe I can think you through it."

"What do you mean?" he asked.

"Just cooperate with me here, okay?"

"Okay, Einstein," he replied. "I'm a willing subject in this here thought-experiment."

"All right," I said. "Here goes." I stopped for a few moments to think. "All right, do this first," I began. "Think about sex with a girl."

"You better not get me doin' too much of that," he said. "I got no girlfriend and I haven't been on a date in three weeks."

"That'll just enhance your visualizing abilities," I said, smiling. "Now think about your latest jerk-off fantasy girl. Tell me what you think of when you think of her."

Dean closed his eyes and started free-associating. "Soft. Tender. Sooooo fuckin' sweet. Curves. Delicate. Wet. Hot. Sooooo fuckin' pretty and sexy."

He opened his eyes and looked at me with a questioning grin.

I considered for a minute. The beer made it difficult for me to get clarity. But he'd asked, and regardless of what he was expecting, I had some expectations of my own.

I stripped off my shirt and dropped it on the floor. "Now look at me."

Dean gulped audibly and shook his head. "Dude. What the fuck?"

"I'm just trying to get you to answer your own question," I said. "Just go with me on this. Either you want an answer or you don't. Now quit acting all nervous and fuckin' look at me, and think about what you see."

He scanned my upper body. "Okay, you're kinda ripped. Big deal," he said. "What's your point?"

"My point is, you're not gonna get my point unless you stop bein' a pussy and cooperate with me here. Don't panic, man, I'm not gonna get gay cooties on you. Now close your fuckin' eyes again and think about something for me."


"Think about touching a woman," I said.

"It's been so long ago I can't remember," he joked.

He closed his eyes and appeared to concentrate on the matter. After a few moments, he opened them again and said, "Okay, so what?"

I moved closer to him. "Now squeeze my shoulders."

That rattled him. "Say what?"

"I'm not kidding," I said. "Put your hands on my shoulders and squeeze."

He hesitated. "I don't know, man, that's queer."

"Squeezing my shoulders is queer?"

He shook his head. "Look, I just asked you a question. I wasn't hittin' on you. I don't get with guys."

"I'm not asking you to get with me," I said. "Why'd you ask the question if you didn't want an answer?"

"Feelin' you up isn't an answer," he quipped.

"Whatever," I said. "But how did you learn about soccer? Did you study a book? Did you listen to someone tell you about it? What did you do?"

He started to answer, then stopped.

"Fuck you."

I smiled. "I knew you'd get my point. Physical shit--sports, sex--it's about bodies, not just minds. You don't get it from a book. I figured I could help you see firsthand. Doesn't mean you're gonna get all horny, moron. But you admitted I got a decent form. So already you know the difference between a guy looking good and not. I'm saying, go with what you know and build on that. You really want to know what it's like for me to like guys? What I like about them? Or were you just tryin' to score a laugh at my expense?"

The look on his face was one of a guy who'd been cornered. "I wasn't trying to fuck with you," he said quietly.

A minute passed. Finally he said, "If I do it, you won't tell anybody, right?"

I rolled my eyes. "Jesus fuckin' Christ, ya big baby," I responded angrily, "I'm not tellin' you to suck my cock. Just feel the texture of my skin, feel the muscles. And think about the difference."

"I can't believe I'm even thinking about doing this," he said, still staring at my chest.

I shrugged. "Okay, just forget it." I picked up my shirt and reached for my gym bag beside the couch. "I think I better go, man. I'll catch you tomorrow."

"Wait," he said.

He set the soccer ball down on the couch. "I'm sorry. It was weird. But the only reason I asked....I don't know, man, I know I'm not gay or even bi, but everybody thinks weird kinky shit sometimes. I wondered what made you decide. I wondered if it was like stuff that goes through my head once in a while. I wondered why you decided one thing about yourself and I decided another thing about myself."

I put down my bag and sat down again. "Are you saying you think you're bi?"

The defenses came up again, with a vengeance. "No," he shouted. "I'm straight! I'm not even bi; get that through your thick fuckin' skull, okay? I just wanna know why you are."

He went to the refrigerator, grabbed another beer, and sat down beside me. "I'm sorry, man. It just makes me nervous, okay? And all I'm saying is that it's not like a guy doesn't think weird shit every now and then. Like I said. And you seem normal like everybody else, and I just wondered if the difference was you just did something different in your head with the crazy shit that goes through a guy's head sometimes."

"I wasn't trying to come on to you," I lied. "But I still think what I had in mind would help you understand what I like about guys. I mean, you know, in that way. Even if it didn't turn you on."

He sat motionless, looking me over. After a while he nodded, hesitantly.

He reached over and put a hand on my shoulder.

Then another.

Squeezing lightly at first, then more deeply, he closed his eyes as he kneaded the muscles.

After a while, he pulled back from me and opened his eyes. I ignored his deer-in-the-headlights expression. "Okay," I said, "stand up with me."

We stood up. "Put your hands around one of my biceps," I said. He swallowed hard and squeezed my left bicep while I flexed it. I heard him mutter "damn" under his breath.

"Okay, now put your hands on my chest, and feel my chest and abs."

He backed away and said, "No, man, that's enough of this shit. I get the general..."

"Do it," I ordered, interrupting him.

Reluctantly, slowly, he moved toward me and put a hand on each pec.

He let his fingers knead my pecs lightly, and slid his hands across the smooth skin. The fingertips of his right hand brushed over my left nipple, moved down toward my abs, then back up again. His left hand got into the act. He did this a couple of times, each time becoming more deliberate about feeling my nipples. After the third pass or so, he took the thumb and middle finger of his right hand and squeezed my nipple gently, rolling it between two fingers. I moaned, and his breathing began to get deeper and heavier.

Trance-like, he knelt down in front of me, letting his hands move up and down the ridges of my abs. As he made his way lower, his fingers rubbed back and forth over the trail of hair below my belly button.

He reached the waistband of my soccer shorts. Absently, he started to tug the waistband down about a quarter inch. Reflexively, I thrust my hips forward a little, causing my now-hard cock to push against his wrist.

That broke the spell for both of us. He pulled his hands off me as if he'd just touched a hot stove.

"Okay, I'm done with this bullshit," he said, violently. He jumped up and backed away from me.

Over the last few minutes, the effect of the beer had attenuated some, and I was starting to feel uneasy about this crazy idea myself. I nodded my head back toward the couch. As we walked back over and sat down, the stunned expression I saw on his face made me nervous.

* * * * * * * * * * *

I was about to ask him what he'd learned, when he said, "What the fuck did you do that for?"

The hostility surprised me, and put me on the defensive. "Hey. You were the guy feeling me up."

"Quit fuckin' with my head," he said emphatically, as he jumped up and began pacing the floor. "I just thought...goddammit, I just asked you a simple question. You told me you weren't gonna fuck with me. I trusted you and decided to go along with your stupid shit, and then you..."

I didn't let him finish. "I did what? Like you got a mouthful of cum or something? Why the hell are you so pissed off?"

He didn't answer.

He walked slowly back to the couch and sat down. "Damn, Phillips," he said. "Look, it's just that I...dude, I've never felt on a guy like that. It was just weird, you know?" He looked down for a moment, then said, "It was...it was definitely different."

I waited for him to say something else. Finally, he added, "I mean, it didn't turn me on or anything. It's just...You won't tell anybody, will ya?"

The pleading in his eyes pissed me off, but I kept my cool.

"I already told you," I reminded him. "Of course not. But if it didn't turn you on, why would it matter? It was all innocent, right?"

"Well, yeah," he said. "But it might raise some eyebrows."

I raised mine at him. "So I'll ask you again," I said. "What did you learn?"

He furrowed his brow. "What did I learn about what?"

"Well, first of all, I guess, what's the difference between a guy's body and a girl's?"

He relaxed some. "Shit," he said, chuckling, "I coulda told you that without having you make me give you the full-body workover."

"Okay, but you free-associated before about a girl's body. Now free-associate about mine."

"Ugly," he said. "Skinny." He broke out the grin again.

"You lying sack o' shit," I said, punching him. "No kidding this time, do the same sort of word-association."

"I don't know, man. Anyway, we all got similar builds on the team. You and me, not that much different."

"That's not what I asked," I said.

Annoyed, he replied, "Okay, what did you ask?"

"Set the bullshit aside since it's just the two of us. Tell me what came into your head."

"Hard," he said. "Not just your dick, although I caught that too," he said with a wink and a smile. "Strong. Tough. Defined. Confident."

"Confident? My body's 'confident'?"

"I don't know, man," he stammered. "It's just what came to me."

"None of those words you said about women, though, right? No 'sweet'? No 'soft curves'? No 'delicate'? No 'tender'? But you liked it anyway?"

"I didn't say I liked it," he said, looking away.

* * * * * * * * * * *

You learn a few things when you devote time and energy and brainpower to the art of seduction. You learn about the various nuances of interest, and desire, and ambivalence, and incipient guilt, and you learn how to watch those wrestle with each other in the facial expressions, in the body language, of the one you're after. You learn when to press your advantage and when to let the other person have a little slack.

I'd never gone into "sexual conquest" mode with a guy before. The one sexual encounter I'd had with a guy had been so completely vulnerable, so devoid of calculation or manipulation, it couldn't possibly serve as a reference point.

But as I put Dean through his paces feeling my muscles, I began almost unconsciously to look for clues and cues in his face, in his gestures, his tone of voice, his body language; just the way I did when I was looking for an advantage with a woman. Somewhere along the line of this little "thought-experiment," the cold, calculating, using part of me decided that tonight was the night, and that Dean was the man who'd take me a little farther down my road.

That he was semi-hostile made it all the more compelling.

I looked him in the eye and said, "So, if my body did turn you on--which, of course, it didn't--what would turn you on about it?"

"It didn't turn me on," he said. "I wanna be real clear on that right now."

"Right. You didn't like it."

"No," he said, "I didn't say that."

"So you do like my body," I said.

"No, I don't," he said. "I mean...I...you're tight, and..." he blushed furiously. "Goddammit, you're fuckin' with my head. Again."

He sighed.

"Your body doesn't turn me on, okay? But I see the things that are attractive about it. You keep in shape. We all do. It wasn't a turn-off. I didn't dislike it." He glared at me. "And I swear if you quote me you're dead meat."

I laughed. "All right, then. Just so we're clear--if you didn't dislike my body, and if you could see the things that are attractive about it, then in some sense you liked my body, right?"

"Asshole," he muttered.

I kept the pressure on. "Was it unpleasant to touch me? Be honest."

"It wasn't pleasant, it wasn't unpleasant, it was okay, okay? I liked how firm and tight you are. There, ya happy?" He glared at me.

"So, when I tell you that I'm attracted to guys and girls, do you get sort of what I mean?"

"I think so," he replied, rolling his eyes. "Or let's say I can admit to appreciating those qualities on you."

I let those words hang in the air for a minute before I pushed. Then, flashing him a seductive grin, I said, "So what would it take for you to let me feel you up like that?"

He stared hard at me, then looked up at the clock.

Swallowing, he looked into my eyes and said quietly, "Not m-much."

He tore his eyes away from mine and looked toward the window as he asked, "Would you...I...would you do more?"

* * * * * * * * * * *

I felt my dick spasm once in response. "Are you fucking kidding me?"

"Okay, never mind, I'm sorry I brought it up," he said.

"No, man, don't be," I replied, rushing to reassure him. "I just...I mean, this whole time you're all 'don't fuck with my head, I'm not bi, I never said I liked your body.' And you were the one talking that day about how fucked up Kyle is and all afraid he'd hit on you." I looked at him, wary.

"I've already told you I'm sorry about that, Andy, what the fuck more do you want from me? Shane just kinda got me on a roll that day," he said. "I don't hate Kyle. He and I are good."

"I know," I admitted.

He continued. "I'm not gay. I'm not even like you--bi, or whatever. But I guess it doesn't gross me out. And what you just made me do..."

I broke in on those words. "What I made you do?"

"Naw, I didn't mean it like that," he said. "I meant, what we just did...I see your point. Your body, it's....it's okay. I can see what would be...like what would be attractive. And look, man, I haven't gotten any in so long I'm just fuckin' horny. And--no offense, man--but I'm thinking you're bound to give head better than any girl."

"Why would I take offense at that?" I asked, bristling. "Is it a bad thing?"

"Dammit, Andy, I didn't mean it like that, either," he said. "I'm trying to do this right, man, give me a break; this is totally new to me and pretty damn unexpected. I just misread you, man, I wasn't gonna think of you like a slut either way. I'm sorry."

He was right. I was being too touchy about it. I guess I still had some distance to go myself.

I smiled at him. A little expression of relief crept over his face. I strode over to him and began lifting up his shirt. "Don't be," I said, grinning and tossing his shirt aside. "I'll do all the 'more' you want, man. I'll fuckin' drain you dry, if you want it."

"Jesus," he whispered.

* * * * * * * * * * *

We walked into his bedroom and shut the door. The adrenaline was pounding through my system. My dick was steel. And, bravado notwithstanding, I was scared as hell: This would be my first time doing something like this since...


A trickle of sadness made its way through me and quickly dissipated.

Then The Voice--the one that always tries to give me the third degree, keep me honest with myself--spoke for the first time since I'd set foot on campus.

Slow down, boy, and think about who this guy is. You wanna be doin' this?

I wasn't sure. What would happen if Dean got buyer's remorse? Worse yet, we got along pretty well, but Dean was definitely the kind of guy who kept tabs on where his buds were, in relation to him, in the pecking order.

The Voice laughed at this one. As if you're not

Ouch. But all the more reason I had to be careful with this. Dean already considered himself a little better than me by virtue of his seniority. And he wasn't exactly a willing participant in what we'd just done. I had fucked with his head a little, taken advantage of some vulnerability and trust he'd risked with me. Anyway, regardless of what he'd just said, he hadn't been too cool about Kyle when Kyle outed himself. If I gave him head, would he think of me as someone who'd "become his cocksucker," giving him the right to treat me like some sub-male dick-whore? There was no way I'd let that happen.

I sat down on his bed, silently considering all this as I looked at him. It was apparent that waiting for me to take the lead was making him uneasy. "Fuck, Andy, you gotta be the one to make the move here; I...this is kinda freakin' me out."

"I'm having second thoughts," I said. "How you gonna treat me afterwards? We gotta be on the same team, for at least two years."

Frustration was starting to show on his face. "I promise...I fuckin' swear. It'll be fine. How could I give you shit? Dammit, I just had my hands all over you, everywhere but where it counts. That's pretty fuckin' suspect. Somebody else watchin' it would think so, anyway. So it's not like I got room to rip on you. You got me up for this, man; you gotta finish it."

I wasn't sure. "You don't think it's sick? Five minutes ago you weren't havin' any of it, and we both know what you said about Kyle."

He frowned. "How many times you gonna make me apologize for that? I'm sorry about Kyle, man. I told you, I was just fuckin' around. If it makes any difference to you, I've told Shane I think he's full of shit for the way he's being about him."

I crossed my arms and continued to stare at him. After a moment or two he said, "Dude, you're right. I'm the one who brought it up. I...I'm curious. I'll admit it. I wanted something to happen. I hoped you'd....I just thought it would be safe and I could trust you to..."

Before he'd had a chance to finish, I said, "You can trust me. That's not the issue, Dean. The issue is whether or not I can trust you. I mean, I don't give a shit who you tell. But I do give a shit how you treat me after." I sat down next to him. "But there's a way you can show me."

From the look of consternation on his face, I could tell he understood immediately.

"Fuck," he muttered to himself. He stood up and walked over to his window, looking out as he had before. I waited as he wrestled with himself. He turned and looked at the clock on the wall. Then he turned to me, smiled nervously, and said, "Okay. But I do you first, because after I get mine, I might not have the nerve to go through with it."

"Then you just bought yourself a top-shelf blowjob, my man," I laughed.

Taking a deep breath, he said, "Okay...I don't know what I'm doin' here...you gotta walk me through it."

I'd spent some time already thinking about the whole issue of sex with guys and how I wanted it to happen. I wasn't going to settle for some fully-clothed quickie that both of us would find easy to deny. There'd been too much denial of this part of me already, and in any case, the quicker it went by and the more spur-of-the-moment it seemed, the easier it would be for Dean to turn it against me later with a claim that he was horny and drunk, or that I came on to him when he was horny and drunk.

"I'll do that," I replied, "if you promise to trust me through this whole thing, okay?"

"Well...okay," he said.

"First of all, I got some ground rules. We're not gonna just whip 'em out and blast off as quick as we can. This has gotta be sex, Dean, not just a fuckin' blowjob from a queer. When this is over, it's gonna be something you participated in, you know what I mean?"

He sighed. "I get it. Look, if we're gonna do this, let's stop talking about it and just do it, okay?"

"Okay," I said. "The first thing is, we gotta get naked."


"I'm not doin' this halfway," I said. "So come over here and undress me."

"Why me?"

"Don't you trust me?"

"Yeah," he said, "but you can fuckin' undress yourself, can't you?"

"Look, dude," I said. "If there's one thing I know it's that ninety percent of sex is in the head. You've heard me say how I think a lot of people could go there if they'd admit it to themselves?"

"Yeah. So?"

I stood up. "If you got the balls to try this once with me, I wanna make it as good for both of us as I can. And to do that you need to get into the mindset of you're about to have sex with me, not just 'we traded blowjobs.' It's not just about dicks, it's about the whole thing. That's why the 'naked' part. And I like to be undressed by the person I'm gettin' with."

"That's what I was afraid of," he said uneasily. "But what-the-hell-ever." He walked back toward me until he was right in front of me.

"One other thing," I said. If you're gonna freak out on me or get all tentative or squeamish, let's not even do it. You go this far, you gotta get yourself into it the best you can. I mean it's just blowjobs, but like I said, I'm not just a dick with a life-support system attached, and you're not either. Do you know what I'm talkin' about?"

"Yeah," he said, smiling. "We gotta be into it if we're gonna do it."


"But I got a condition, too," he said.

"What's that?"

"No kissing above the neck."

"No worries, man," I said. "Why would I want to kiss an ugly face like yours?"

"I dunno," he smirked; "you seem to want to suck an ugly dick like mine."

He laughed, and for a while, the hesitancy in his body-language vanished.

He kneeled down at my feet and started untying my shoes.

The deliberateness with which he untied my shoes and gently slipped them off was maddening. Once he had my shoes off, he gently stroked the sides and soles of my feet through the cotton fabric of the socks. In response, I closed my eyes, inhaled deeply and breathed out slowly.

He took off my socks the same way he took off my shoes. Tenderly, excruciatingly slowly, brushing his fingers lightly down my feet as he bared them. A shiver went up my spine; my shorts began to feel uncomfortably tight. He stood up and reached for my t-shirt. I raised my arms as he pulled it over my head and threw it on the floor. Then he looked at me, smiled, and pushed me firmly downward until I was lying on my back.

He gave my chest a good visual going-over, then leaned over slightly and put his hands on my thighs. Just then the uncertainty must have grabbed hold again. "Fuck," he whispered, shaking his head back and forth. "Fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck, fuck." The last one was spoken full voice. "I can't believe I'm doin' this."

"You don't have to do it," I said, giving him an opportunity to back out.

Our eyes had a brief, wordless conversation. He raised his eyebrows and shrugged.

Then he grabbed at the waistband of my Umbros and tugged them down.

I lifted my hips as he slid them off my legs; he tossed them to the floor on top of my t-shirt.

He sat down on the bed next to me. My interest in the proceedings was obvious, even through the cotton fabric of my boxer briefs.

"Joe Boxer," he said. "Figures." Grabbing the logo-bearing waistband and pulling it slightly away from my stomach, he then let it snap back.

I laughed. "What do you mean?"

"Oh, nothing," he replied. "I'm just talking off the top of my head, saying whatever shit comes out. I think I'm just stalling or something. So..."

Slowly, tentatively, he put a hand on my crotch. "Damn," he said quietly. Slowly, he took a finger and traced down, then back up, the length of my cock. Towards the top of the upstroke my entire body shuddered in response; he chuckled.

I swung my feet off the bed and stood up. "I want you in front of me."

"I bet you do," he said as he knelt down and got eye-level with my midsection.

He took a deep breath and pulled the boxer briefs down to my knees. I lifted my right leg a little, pushed the shorts to the floor with my foot, and stepped out of them.

"Oh fuck, oh shit," he whispered to himself again, staring at my erect penis. I pulled the slightly-retracted foreskin back the rest of the way. A drop of precum spilled from the tip and dribbled a few inches down the length of my cock. "Wow," he said. "You get that all the time?"

"Yeah," I answered. "Don't you?"

"Only when I'm just about there," he said.

He reached for my dick, but I pushed his hand away and said, "Now you."

He looked at me and frowned. "You want me undressed for this part?"

"I want us both undressed the whole time we're doin' this," I replied.

He stood up and backed away from me a little. "Why?"

"You're beautiful," I said.

He winced a little. "You mean I'm hot. I ain't fuckin' beautiful."

"Call it what you want," I said. "I wasn't calling you a woman." I flexed a bicep and squeezed it. "Remember?"

"Right," he laughed. "I remember. 'Strong. Tough. Defined. Confident.' Jesus, me and my big mouth."

I said, "You're all those things. I wanna see that."

"But can't we just wait until it's my turn to..."

"No," I said.

"But I might...I mean, what if..." His voice trailed off as he looked away.

"What if what?"

"What if I get hard while I'm...while I'm suckin' your dick?"

I grinned and said, "Well, then I'll definitely feel flattered."

He shook his head. "But I don't...I mean, I'm not like that..."

Something about this felt familiar. Not in a good way. I blew past it, though, and said,
"Okay, you're not. So why are you worried about getting hard?"

"I fuckin' get hard just thinking about the word 'sex.' It's a sexual situation, I don't care if it's gay."

"Then it doesn't matter," I said. "Anyway, I'm gonna see you hard when I'm blowing you; what's the big deal?."

"That's when you're blowing me, when you're makin' it feel good. It's supposed to get hard then. It's not supposed to get hard when I'm doin' you, and I don't want you thinking..."

I flashed him my most evil smile. "Are you hard now?"

"Yeah," he said, staring at the floor.

"And what's been goin' on? I been suckin' on you yet? Nope; in fact, you been runnin' your finger across my dick and lookin' it in the eye. So as far as what I'd be thinking if you got hard doin' stuff to me, I'd say that hoss done left the barn, bro."

His face flushed, and after a few moments, he rolled his eyes and said, "What the fuck ever. Okay. You want me stripped down while I do ya, you got it. But you gotta undress me too. That's your power thing and I get to have it the other way too."

"Gladly," I said.

"Just fuckin' hurry up," he said.

"Okay," I told him. "Stand right where you are and don't move."

I walked around him and stood behind him, moving in until my body was touching his. I leaned in a little and spoke quietly in his ear, "I promise you're gonna love this. I guarantee what I'll do for you is gonna make up for any grossout factor you experience keeping your end of the deal." I put my hands on his shoulders and began massaging them.

The heat from my breath in his ear must have given him a shiver. "I guess it's not gonna be no grossout factor. Jesus. This feels weird as shit and I'm sorry, it is freakin' me out some...but I'm fuckin' hard as a rock."

I reached around him and pulled him into me, his denim-covered butt mashing into my hard cock. As I traced my fingers over his nipples, he exhaled raggedly.

I ran my hands over his pecs and let my hands wander south, across his abs, then back up to his nipples, which by now were standing up and asking for attention. I worked on him like that for a while, then moved back down toward his abs and around the back.

Pushing him away from me slightly, I slid my hands down over his ass, squeezing firmly. Then I reached back around his waist and began unbuckling his belt. I pulled it loose from his jeans, tossed it on the floor, and unbuttoned his jeans. I pushed them down his legs and he stepped out of them.

He turned to face me. In that brief moment, something changed in him, and it startled me.

He stood before me. Tall. Certain. Almost defiant. Hands down by his sides, shoulders broad and erect. Proud. Gazing into my eyes, utterly unafraid. My eyes drank in his sleek, graceful lines, his taut musculature. He was clad only in a pair of white A&F boxers with blue vertical stripes; the insistent presence underneath was pushing the fly into obscene prominence. Eyes drilling into mine the whole time, he hooked his thumbs under the waistband and pushed the shorts to mid-thigh. Then he bent down and pushed them past his knees. They fell the rest of the way to the floor; he stepped out of them, kicked them aside, and stepped back toward me, facing me again, naked. His eyes flashed with calm, confident expectancy. And something more. Almost like anger, but not.

It was hunger. Hunger in wait.

I thought of a lion striding across the African veldt, surveying his domain; claiming it.

For a moment I forgot to breathe. He was beautiful. Powerful. Dangerous. And well past ambivalence.

"Touch me," he said.

I put my hands on his shoulders. He looked into my eyes and, just before he sank to his knees, he said, "You tell anyone about this and you'll regret the day you ever met me."

I nodded as he put his hands on my ass and pulled me into his face.

Everything seemed to turn slow-motion as I watched his tongue reach toward the tip of my dick and collect the precum that had pooled there. He licked his lips and rubbed them together, coating them with my lube; then he licked them again. Smiling wickedly, he said, "Tastes like mine."

That caught me off-guard. "You've tasted your precum?"

He shrugged. "Hasn't everybody?"

He took my dick in his hand, appraising it, pulling it downward to gauge the resistance, and letting it spring back up. It slapped me in the belly with an audible snap; we laughed. He took it in his hands again and gently pulled the foreskin over the exposed head. He let go and watched, as my dick stayed hooded. Then he grasped me again and pulled the foreskin back down. I closed my eyes and let the sensations wash over me.

"That's pretty cool," he said. "It stays pretty much where you leave it. Does it always skin back when you're hard?"

"Usually," I said. "Eventually."

He pulled the skin back up over the head of my dick, and in a fluid motion, lowered his face to it and put it in his mouth. I groaned as he circled his tongue around it, took it out of his mouth and looked at it, unsheathed it again, and put it back into his mouth.

Gradually he began moving up and down on me. He seemed to know just how to push the buttons. "Jesus, Dean," I moaned. "Fuck, that's good."

He took my dick out of his mouth, pausing in the action. "I've had a few blowjobs myself. I got the equipment. I figure I know how it needs to be serviced." He grinned and put me back in his mouth.

"You got that right," I gasped.

The heat rose as we got into it. I had my hands in his hair, caressing his head as he sucked on me. I tried to let him control the action, tried to keep from grabbing his head and pushing him into me with my hands, but things got pretty intense and I got a little more forceful with him than I'd meant a couple of times. He didn't protest though; in fact, I was surprised at how deep he was willing to take me. Pretty amazing for a straight boy, I thought. But Dean never did anything halfway on the field either.

We began to settle into each other's rhythms. I was covered in sweat; I felt the lust radiate off me in waves. The pleasure, the sensation, the frenzy of coupling like this, was sending me rapidly toward the inevitable conclusion.

Just as I was rounding the bend, he pulled his mouth off me. "You gettin' close?"

I could only whimper. I figured he was done. I grabbed myself and started humping my fist, but he pushed my hand away. "I'm in for the full deal. I expect the same." Before I had a chance to say anything, he'd put me back in his mouth.

I couldn't control it any longer; I put my hands on his head and began full-out fucking his face. Finally, with a growl, I pushed deep into his mouth and exploded.

I went white-blind for a second and the room seemed to disappear. The dizziness, the ecstasy took over, and I was flooded with love for this beautiful soccerboy. As the white goo emptied out of my dick into his mouth, my neural circuits got imprinted with incredible--and permanent--feelings of tenderness and regard for my teammate.

The whole time my dick spasmed out its orgasm, he let me stay in his mouth. Finally, when the last shudder had passed, I pulled out and fell back onto his bed.

He'd kept from swallowing. He ran into his bathroom and spit into the sink, then filled a glass with water. He took a swig, rinsed, and spit. He looked at me sheepishly as he walked back over. He sat down next to me and said, "I'm sorry, man; no offense, okay? But that was gross."

I laughed at him. He looked hurt, and punched me on the shoulder. "I tried, dude. And, you know, it wasn't too bad. I could kinda get into it; I liked makin' you feel good. That was pretty awesome. The whole thing was kinda sexy. But the cum, man. That just made it too real. I was not up for that. I'm sorry."

"Don't be stupid," I said. "You let me finish totally. Jesus, Dean. I..."

An image--no, an experience--seared its way out of my memory and across my consciousness.

Exploding deep into Matt loving him so desperately so peacefully oh God I

I jumped, startled. Scared.

Dean was looking at me, eyebrows raised. "You okay?"

I took a few deep breaths.


I was quiet for a while. I waited for my head and heart to settle down.

I wonder if I'll ever be free of him

Finally, I sat up, stroked the inside of Dean's thigh, and pushed him backwards onto his bed. "We're not done here, are we?"

He grinned.

* * * * * * * * * * *

The second act was as good as the first.

These things stay with me:

The smell of his skin.

The taste of his semen.

The touch of his hands on my shoulders, in my hair.

The energy that hummed in him, radiated out of him.

And the way he kissed me on the cheek after I'd swallowed the last drop of him.

After he'd gotten his nut we lay in his bed together naked. He snuggled up next to me, his dick against my ass. We fell asleep briefly.

We got up and got dressed, went out into the living area. I got ready to leave. Just as I'd grabbed my gym bag, he said softly, "Hey. I think...I need to say something, okay?"

I looked at him without responding, and sat down on the couch with him.

He met my eyes with his, and said, "I...Andy..."

"I won't tell anybody," I said.

"I know," he said. "I wasn't gonna say that."

He seemed to be searching for the words. "It was good. I didn't like all of it, but...Thing is, see...oh, man, how do I..."

He blushed. "It was you."

I looked at him, trying to understand.

"I got off, yeah. And now I see what you meant. Or, I don't know, I think I know the answer to my original question."

I waited for him to find some words.

"It didn't change what I know about myself. But it was good. And, well...you..."

He shrugged his shoulders, sighed, scratched his head. "I felt good. About you. And I don't really get it. But I don't care. I liked it anyway. I just wanted to tell you."

I put my hand out to him, but he grabbed for me, pulled me into him, and gave me a quick hug and a slap on the shoulder. "This was a one-time deal. But you and me...I got your back any time, man," he said as he released me.

I smiled weakly, trying to ignore the way the words reverberated down the halls of my past. "You're all right, Dean," I said.

Awkward seconds ticked by as I tried to still my mind and memory. I wasn't successful.

Finally, I stood up. "I gotta go," I said hesitantly.

He walked me to the door. "Okay."

I shut the door behind me and walked freely into the night, a captive, nonetheless, of the present and the past.

Copyright 2007 by Adam Phillips. 

Sorry for the long delay.  Major life changes have happened in the last couple of months and they've taken lots of my time.  I promise that unless I get hit by a bus, I'll finish this story.  There are about 10 more chapters to go. If you'd like to stay informed about when I have a new chapter coming out, you're welcome to join yet another Nifty author's Yahoo group.  Mine's at http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Adamstories/  Thanks for reading, for the e-mails, and for hanging in with my ridiculously slow posting schedule.  See you next time!