Two hours before the ball drops, I slip and slide down your street. A fresh layer of snow blankets the asphalt and patches of ice hide beneath it.
When I come around the bend by your house, you appear in my headlights. Cracking ice from the windshield of your Jeep. I'm not sure if you've noticed me, or if you spotted my car. I coast to the curb and stop a few doors down the street from you. Kill my headlights.
I haven't made up my mind if I'm coming to your party. I want to see you, but I dread seeing anyone else. Your sister. Your parents. Guys I went to high school with. Friends of your parents who may know my parents. Friends who might ask questions that I'm unprepared to answer.
I'm sorry about Christmas. I didn't stop by like I said I would. Truth is, I don't know how to sit in a room with your parents looking at me. Wondering how the guy who used to date their daughter is trading glances with their son.
I don't know why I care what they think. Maybe I don't care. Maybe I'm the one who cares. Because I've had this story in my head for so long—the American Boxed Life. You graduate high school, go to college, get married, buy a house, and have a kid. In that order. Because that's what normal people do. As tedious as is sounds, I always thought that would be my life. The normal path. Like everyone else.
It's all new to me in a way that's both wonderful and terrifying. And now I'm thinking that maybe I am this thing. I'm the guy who likes the cock, the balls, the ass. I'm the guy who likes stubble and armpit hair. People I went to high school with will be at your party, Colton. And I don't know how to explain that the guy who used to screw your sister is gay now. I am gay, right?
Just so you know, Colton, I'm utterly intoxicated by you, and wonder how I've looked at you for so long without really seeing you. The few moments when I'm with you is when I feel fully alive. Everything else is a bad high school play—the kind of pretending that looks and feels horrible.
Your guests arrive in batches of twos and threes. Trudging across your snow-covered lawn, they loiter in front of your porch. Check their cell phones, and once fully weaponized with their Tweets and Facebook status updates, they ring the bell.
Jackie opens the door. Flashes her shitty waitress grin and lets them inside. Her eyes pause on you and I can read the look on her face clearly: “Why the fuck are you clearing the Jeep? The party's in here.”
You look up at her just before she close the door. You turn halfway around and your gaze meets mine.
Show me your snowman-melting smile.
“Fuck,” slips out of my mouth, because I don't really want to come inside. My face won't hide what my body feels when I look at you. People will ask questions—that I'm not ready to answer. When did this happen? And how long have you known? Have you always? Didn't you use to date girls? Didn't you date Jackie?
You hold up a finger, which I interpret to mean “give me a minute”. I'm not sure what's going to happen in a minute, but I nod anyway. Kill the engine of my car.
You jog to your door, turn the knob, and bump it open with your hip. The door falls shut behind you,and I close my eyes. Aware of my icicle toes. My cold fingers. My cold butt cheeks. Aware of how odd and stalkerish I must appear. Lurking at the curb. Watching the idiots stagger in.
Letting out a sigh, I remove my keys from the ignition. I catch the door handle, check my shoulder into it, and feel a cold slice of air as I shove it open. Planting my feet in the snow, I launch myself out of the car. Steadying myself on the door-frame, I step out into the street. Slinging the door shut behind me.
I turn toward your Jeep and glimpse you coming out of your house. A knapsack hangs from your shoulder. You make a come-here gesture with your hand.
My cock stiffens at the forethought of you. What I want to do to you. What I want you to do to me. It's been playing nonstop in my mind for days. Even when I sleep.
I'm not sure where the line is with you. I'm not sure what to do with you. Do I hug you like a long-lost friend? Can I hug you tighter? Can I taste your lips?
We meet at the curb behind your Jeep. You melt me with your smile. There's both happiness and freshly-conquered fear in your voice. “Glad you came.”
“Me too.” I open my arms and you come into me. Dropping your knapsack into the snow, you clutch me as if I might disappear otherwise. You bury your face in my chest. Sigh.
We hug like we're trying to squeeze into the same pair of pants. There is no room between our bodies.
The tip of your stiff prick pokes against mine. I drink in the scent of you and feel the heat of your body bleeding into mine. “Sorry I haven't been around.”
“Ah, fuck it... You're here.”
Our bodies tangle around each other. If there are any wandering eyes, there are bound to be wondering minds. This isn't how two old friends greet each other.
I glance at your knapsack. “What's with the bag?”
“Just a couple of bottles of wine, some vodka, a dime bag of weed, some lube...” You look up at me when you say the word 'lube'.
Of course my mind wanders with all the things that people wonder, but I don't say anything.
“Thought maybe we could get the fuck out here,” you say.
“You can't just ditch your own party!”
“It's more Jackie's party than it is mine. You're the only one I invited.”
I spot the many layers of what you say, but lack the motivation to process everything. If you only invite a single person, it's a rendezvous, not a party. But more than anything, it's a gamble. That the person will show. That one person will be enough for you.
I scoop your knapsack from snow. Sling it over my shoulder. “Okay, then...”
The road hums beneath us. My feet vibrate against the floorboard. My butt. My legs. My hands, too. They all tingle and tickle.
The wipers rub the windshield and your fists clench the steering wheel. You stare ahead, finding the road in the falling snow.
I watch you. Study you. See your face in water color. Blurred in shades of winter. I see your arms edged in dashboard light, and a soft glow spreads from your face. If there's such a thing as a soul—a part of you that lives in perpetuity—I think I see yours, or make believe that I can see it. Because I want to see it.
Centering your hand on the steering wheel, you tap out a beat with your thumb. You stretch your right hand blindly toward me. Your fingers brush across my leg and graze my inner thigh. With your thumb you stroke me.
Turning toward you, my back pressing against the passenger door, I feel for your hand and grab hold of it. Not really pulling you away from me, but connecting with you. Linking us together with thumbs, fingers, palms, skin. An intricate tapestry of flesh.
With your hand in mine, I raise your hand to my lips. Kiss the back of it. Kiss the knuckles. Kiss the tip of your thumb. Parting my lips, I press my teeth against the tip of your thumb, not really biting. Merely nibbling, tasting, feeling the meat beneath your skin in my mouth.
"Ethan," my name slips out of you as a gasp.
Lowering my jaw, I let your thumb press against my tongue. Closing my lips, I suck on your thumb like I would if it were your cock. Relish the taste of your warm skin. The ridges of your thumbprint bristle my taste buds.
I close my eyes and lose myself in your warmth.
When I open them again, the city lights are far behind us. You follow tire ruts through the snow along a dark country road. The sugar-sprinkled trees stretch their long bare limbs over drifts of snow. Barns of raw timber guard over the frozen pastures. An occasional horse trots by.
Taking your hands from my mouth, "Where are we going?"
"We're going to miss the Ball-drop."
Then showing me your sick Frosty grin, you pull your hand from mine and lower it to my crotch. Finding my plumbs through my jeans, you squeeze softly. "Looks like the balls have dropped already."
Without slowing the Jeep, you swerve off the road into a large lot. Piles of empty pallets. Bags of frozen mulch.
My first thought is that you've run off the road, but rather than stopping, you keep driving. Between the pallets, the mulch, along a split-rail fence. Until I see soft white light in the distance.
"What is this place?"
"It's the place where a snowman loses his carrot."
You open the door and heat washes against my face. I breathe in sweet air as the chirping of birds and the gurgle of waters hits my ear.
Glancing over your shoulder, you hold the door open. "It's okay. I work here."
Ducking between your arm and the open door, I step into the explosion of orchids, lilies, and African violets. Green ivy crawls across beams and glass panels. A bird hops along the greenhouse path.
"And it's cool that we're here?"
"No one will ever know."
Moseying along the stone path, I take in a breath of spring in the middle of winter. Butterflies—blue and orange—flutter over the Azalea's and steam rises from the goldfish pond.
“Fuck,” is all I can think to say.
The door clicks shut behind me.
I glance at you, shirking your hat and coat. Stumbling, rocking from side to side, like a battered ship trying to right itself.
Our eyes meet. So much more than seeing each other—we've seen each other before. This is reflecting each other. Recognizing. Believing. Wanting. It's knowing you like a secret place in a park. There's someplace inside of you that I share with you that's only for us. With your eyes, you stir me. Wake me. Animate me.
Peeling off your shirt and kicking off your shoes, you tell me “lose the coat...fuck it, lose everything.”
Gasping the thick air, I nod and fumble with the buttons on my coat.
“Fuck!” You dig your hands into the fabric of my coat and wind me toward you. Our chins bump. Then, our noses. You drive me backwards with your kiss until my balance sinks. I'm falling—but not really falling. With your feet spread wide and your arms flexed, you hold me up by my coat. Waddling forward, your feet straddle my legs, as you both kiss me and lower me to the ground.
I sink into the garden dirt, and you lean over me. The heat of your body spreads across me as you slide your hands under my shirt. Your palms press against my hips. Your thumbs massage the flesh around my navel.
I slip my hands between your chest and arms. Almost to your armpits. Raising my head from the ground, I kiss your nipple. Suck it.
“Oh, fuck, Ethan...” I hear in your voice that it's the good kind of 'oh, fuck'. The simply wonderful kind.
Lifting my arms over my head, you pull my coat and shirt off in one tangled clump. Toss it into the African violets.
Now, our chest and arms are naked. And we're pressed together inside our furnace of body-heat and lust.
A drop of your sweat trickles from your armpit. Tickles the edge of my finger. A shiver pass through my body, as I drink in the scent of you. And lifting my hand to my mouth, I taste the drink of your body.
You yank on my belt, until the prong lets loose. Then yanking on my jeans, you lift until the button pops open. Your fingers slip past the elastic band of my underwear, comb through my pubic hair, until you hit the shaft of my cock.
Reaching around my shaft, you squeeze me. Pull me. Stroke. Until you decide to rid yourself of the obstacle of my jeans.
Your fingers graze my hips, as you yank my jeans and underwear to my knees in one violent yank. Wriggling and kicking, I help you dispense of my clothes.
Leaning over me again, you kiss my lips. My throat. My nipple. Then, pressing my hands into your chest, I kiss you while you finish removing your pants.
Straddling over me, the tip of pulsing cock, taps against my chest. You shimmy backwards until your butt settles on the ground between my legs.
“Ethan...” Your voice is barely a whisper.
“Can I get inside of you?”
It takes me a moment to realize what you mean. You slide your hands under my butt. I curl my legs toward my chest. You push back on my legs with one hand and reach for your knapsack with the other.
Your hard cock taps against my crack. Then, your warm thumb, slicked with grease, slips inside of me.
You look into my eyes. “I'll be gentle... and slow.”
Placing your hands on my hips, you prod with your cock. Not really ramming or shoving. You coax my hole to open for you. And when I'm fully relaxed, you slip in side of me.
My anus opens as you slide deeper into me. The head of your cock disappears inside of me. You slip gently forward. Until half of your cock is inside of me. Then, your pubic bone smacks against my butt cheeks, and I have all of you.
Curling forward, you kiss my nipple. My throat. My lips. Then lifting your chin, you smile. “Happy New Year, Ethan.”