Green Room II
Chapter 40

The phone convo with Craig was as Graham predicted. "Craig? It's Stuart here."


"Listen, I'm not sure what Graham's plan is but I didn't ask him to organize a fight between you and me. I think we've fought enough as it is."


"Can we be friends or something? Or at least not be at each other's throats all the time?"

"Fuck that, mate. You made the challenge in front of your chick, and now you wanna bail? Then you try something when I least expect it? Piss off. You're dead meat. And if you don't make a time, I'll make a time."

"There's no reason to fight. I don't even understand how all this aggro started."

"It started when you smacked my little bro. So now you're saying you can't take on someone your own size? I promise to go easy on you. Graham says it's gonna be all legal with the coach there. But he's my coach, so he's gonna want me to win anyway, hahahahaha!"

"Think you've got the balls to beat me in a fair fight?"

"Say what?"

"You heard me. I'll take you apart, fucker, once and for all."

Craig was so angry and loud, his voice was barely distinguishable. "You are dead meat, bro!"

"So now I'm your bro? Fuck you!"

He slammed down the phone so hard my ears rang. Cool, huh? Now I have the chance to demolish him. Yeah, right. I don't need this kinda stress. I know from experience how hard that moron can hit; instant stars. But, hey, this time his blows will be cushioned by gloves. I'll wear a steel jockstrap, and a medieval knight helmet. No worries.

Hi ho, hi ho, it's off to death we go! I'm dead, I'm dead, it's off with my bloody head!

Now Graham will need to visit every day to train me--at least train me to be fit enough to last three minutes in the ring as I try to avoid Craig, hahaha! I've never been inside one of those things. Kyle went a few rounds with the guys at school and said those rings are huge when you first step inside. But when you try to avoid an opponent, the size shrinks to a phone box.

Hey, G, I'm reading your mail and it sounds like you also want me to take out Craig. I'm chuffed that everyone has confidence in me while my balls shrink and my knees shake. BRETT COME BACK! ALL IS FORGIVEN! Now, there's a thought: what if I invite Brett to Byron and offer him to Craig as a birthday present?

Actually, now that I've considered my idea a little more deeply, I remember Craig and Brett were swim team mates. Fact is I'll be doing situps till I can no longer breathe. That's where Craig nails me every time, right in the gut. And I'll wear headgear so there's no chance of a knockout. Hahahaha!

I wrote G again two days later, and told him I thought Graham was selling tickets to the match, and probably taking bets as well. And me? I kept doing situps in the gym while my trainer watched.

"Everyone wants to be there, Stuart. All the junior swimmers wanna see you give Craig a hiding. That bully is dead meat, I told them. Joe says if you beat his big bro he'll challenge me to a match. Hey! That is so bitching because the whole school will see me flatten Joe."

"Hey, knucklehead, why don't you organize a fight between you and Joe and leave me out of it?"

"Because Craig is full of shit, and we all wanna see him down for a change."

"51 ... 52 ... 53 ... 54 ... Graham, my gut's hurting like hell now."

"Just a few more..."

"55 ... 100."

"That's cheating! Listen, Stuart, there's nothing wrong with you. I reckon you could take him right now."

"Cool it with this damn fight thing already!"

Despite my protests, what really worried me was disappointing the grommet. He was obsessed with my winning, but I wasn't so confident. Craig was mentally wired for this battle, and I wasn't ... nor anywhere near as motivated. Enough of that. One thing is certain, Graham is determined to get me to peak fitness.

Meanwhile, the pain of the bruises has eased. I admit, I initially exaggerated the extent of damage but, at the time, I didn't think so. I still have one massive bruise.

I was on internet chat Friday night, receiving advice from all over, as well as via email. It was obvious everyone rooted for me. Thanks for the vote of confidence, guys. HAVE YOU SEEN THIS CRAIG MORON?

1. Somehow get Brett to help me.
2. Speak to Mr. T. Ask him to check out this Craig and give me a few tips.
3. Speak to my dad.
4. Persist with Graham's training regime. At least he'll get me fitter than I was.

Everyone forgets that no spectators are allowed at the match. Graham says that whenever there's a conflict between two guys that needs one-on-one settlement, no one is allowed at the match except the boxers and their seconds, one for each corner. That put paid to the idea of having Mr. T or my dad present. Graham would be my second ... "because I wanna see Craig go down ... and you'll need someone to throw the towel for you, hehehehe."

School is on Spring break at the moment, which gives me time to plan a strategy, like find a flight of stairs in Philadelphia to climb and throw my arms in the air, like Rocky. Yeah, right. I don't have Sly's bod. If I did, I'd be invincible.

The total plus is that Graham now spends more time with me. Make no mistake, he's in charge, ensuring I train till I drop: situps, chinups, pushups, throwups and cockups. I also swim a lot; slow strokes that make me feel good afterwards. I figure that's because I stretch my obliques and warm them gradually.

By the time Saturday rolled around, I felt like something other than situps or punching the bag. I WAS HORNY! What to do? Nothing, except spend another quiet evening with Melanie. AGAIN!

When I reached Melanie's house, her folks were about to go out, but had organized snacks for us lovebirds to munch while we watched vids. AND, a couple of bottles of Smirnoff Ice. My baby smiled when she answered the front door. Hey, shut up, G. I'm cute! I wore loose-fitting beige chinos, a loose white T and a surf hoody. It was cold, okay? Melanie wore ... a tracksuit. Okay, so it WAS cold.

Shortly after her folks left, Melanie grabbed a couple of vids from the cabinet but didn't insert one into the player. Instead, she brought a tray of snacks and drinks to where I stood, and asked to see my bruises. "They're looking better," she commented after I removed my top. "Still a weird color, but you don't flinch when I run my fingers over your ribs."

"Hey, babes, you're giving me a woody."

We kissed as I took off her top, then fell back onto the couch.

I've had a few chicks in my life, G, but last night with Melanie was the most special I've had with a girl ... ever. Just the two of us, with thoughts of only us, and absolute intimacy ... naked together, embarrassed about nothing.

Snacks? They were forgotten as we became lost in our lovemaking, which was even more intense the second time around. Any residual pain from the bruising was gone. Our love for each other was sealed last night.

We did eventually get around to the snacks and drinks, but remained naked; both totally consumed by the magic of what took place. "You'll give birth to three of my kids in nine months time," I smiled as she sat on my lap, and caused yet another erection. "I used my teeth to make holes in the condoms." She responded with her wonderfully infectious laugh. Then I suggested she remain seated on my lap until her folks arrived home.

"Okay, we can tell my mom we're making babies for her to look after."

"Melanie and Stuart babies! Woohoo! They'll be the cutest little monkeys ever. Hey, check out the carpet--incriminating evidence all over the place. I think we better clean it up, like now!"

We busied ourselves with the clean up, then Melanie used her hairdryer to banish the damp spots. Afterwards, I laid on my back while she rested her elbow on my chest and cupped her chin in her hand. "What's going through that pretty head?" I asked as she gazed at me.

"Everything and nothing."

"Him?" I was unable to ignore the subject of Kyle. This night was so special, I needed to know if Melanie felt the same way.

"Yeah," she said thoughtfully after a pause. "It's not you Stuart, or us. I remember the last time we--Kyle and I--were together and tonight was like a replay. But I'm okay, and I think we're okay." Her eyes misted for a moment. "And I know he's okay with it."

I agreed.

The sound of a car entering the drive immediately broke our trance. We quickly moved to the den where we frantically dressed. By the time the folks walked in, Melanie and I were seated at the kitchen table, drinking coffee. "Hope you enjoyed the drinks and vids," her dad smiled.

"Yeah, best vids and snacks ever!"

Hey, G, I keep playing last night over and over in my head. I remember clearly each feeling of each and every awesome moment. I appreciate Kyle's love for Melanie. It's something you can't help. I think Melanie's insistence on waiting for the right time was a good idea. I also suspect last night was planned. She's a devious lady, G, and I love her.

So, is Stuart straight? Yeah, about as straight as Kyle was: straight in that you get max value from every friendship you have. That's something I learned from reading Kyle's old mail, and from Graham and Melanie. Even from Brett, in a way, but mostly from what Kyle wrote. There are no boundaries in friendship; love is something that needs to be demonstrated.

Speaking of love--my boxing coach is due here soon to give me a hard time. Which reminds me, I need to call Brett. I've also made mental notes to speak to my dad and Mr. T. They've not seen Craig in action so I guess there's not a lot they can offer in terms of pugilist strategy. Why me?