by scavola

by scavola - a place to showcase my books, and for readers to comment / contact me if they'd like.

gay fiction written by a gay man for gay men

twitter: @by_scavola / / email: byscavola@yahoo.com

(the'Duke' series and the 'ATL Engineering' series tabs above.)

Monday, August 17, 2015

Lancelot

I wrote this for a school project when I was like twelve or thirteen:



Lancelot
          
Born to Ban as Galahad,
the king of Bain was his dad.
He was stolen as a tot
and was renamed Lancelot.
Away he went with Vivian
never to be seen again.
The Lady of the Lake raised him well
and much blood he did spill
for he was the greatest knight
and he won every fight.
His equal had not been found
until he began to roam around.
He met up with King Arthur young
and a battle was begun.
They did battle from noon to night
until Lancelot met his plight,
but because he won with a magical sword
Arthur gave him a reward.
The king made him champion
and with him many battles won.
Thus Arthur made his first mistake
when Guinevere he had to take
to his new castle in Camelot
and he chose her to be taken by Lancelot.
And later when Guinevere he saw,
he fell in love and dropped his jaw.
This was true love at first sight
and his tongue he did bite
for this maiden true and fair
was the queen of King Arthur.
“What shall happen to me now?,
he pondered on his desperate brow,
“I’ll defend my king through thick and thin
but Guinevere’s heart I wish to win.”
They traveled on past church and farm
then Guin gave Lance a tap on the arm.
“The maidens in the coach so small
wish for you to have them all.
But to one man goes one wife
so help them to end their strife.
Which one of them will you choose
for they all have sent their woos?”
“My queen so lovely Guinevere,
tell them not to despair
you’re so kind, sweet, and cleaver
and I’ll love you for forever.”
With this statement he did start
a conflict that tore the king apart.
But this trouble was not yet started
until Lance and Guin departed.
They went out one summer day
to take a role in the hay.
In the middle of their passion
they were caught in a wizardly fashion.
Merlin reported this to his master,
news of this great disaster.
Boy King Arthur’s patience was spent
and away to the forest by himself he went.
He went off to kill them both,
his favorite knight and his betrothed.
He went to them and raised his sword
but could not kill those he adored.
They were sleeping, they were still
while King Arthur fought his will.
Into a rock his sword he thrust
to tell them he knew of their lust.
And when Lance awoke next morning fair,
he ran away in despair,
for his king had sought him out
and Guinevere began to pout.
“The King hates us!”, she sadly stated
and to the church she was now dedicated.
She became the sister of a divine order
while Lancelot fled to the border
for far away in a distant land
he became the hermit Galahad.
And in this state he did die
for he lived a sinful life.
Because he’s dead, my tale is told,
the tale of Lancelot of the age of old.

Sunday, May 17, 2015

SHAY



Reclining in a wading pool of natural stone, crimson board shorts contrast his skin, fair with a golden glow. His near shoulder is tense, a cap of muscle. From his armpit, where his chest curves, his nipples are dots. His stomach isn’t too tight, only creased at his ribs. A thin line of sparse hair runs from his bellybutton, over the slight pooch of his belly, and into his shorts. His far leg bent up, his near leg sways under the water.

More man than boy, he’s more handsome than cute. A short mop of brown hair is fringed in curls. His sullen glare isn’t focused, more a reflection of his mood. Under his long, jutting brow, his lashes are thick. The tip of his nose is strong compared to his weak chin. His lips are soft and pink. He bends his ear to his shoulder and back again.

He fidgets, adjusting his position, his stomach flexing to a six-pack in a brief, downward clench.

His weight now on his near arm, a thick vein runs from above his arm pit to the crease of his elbow. His chest is stretched tight. He brings his far leg down, tugging at his shorts, and then brings his leg back up.

He tosses his head about a bit and sighs. He contemplates rubbing his belly but doesn’t.

He shifts his weight and pushes himself up, standing now. He snags his board shorts down as water drips off. He runs his thumbs along the waistband as he turns and steps out of the pool, the water sloshing. The top of his ass, peeking out of his shorts, flexes left, right, left as he strolls to a lounge chair. He kneels and rolls himself down onto the chair. He places his hands behind his head as he settles in, legs straight and open wide.

He takes a deep breath and sighs, closing his eyes. His thick arms and chest crease around his arm pits, the hair trimmed, natural but neat. His torso, long and smooth, is like a roman statue, but with the suppleness of youth. A faint line of hair runs down the curve of his belly, peeking out of his shorts. He drops his hands to his sides, hooking his thumbs into the waistband of his shorts.

He touches his belly lightly with his fingertips, and then rubs it, palms flat. His left hand slides up to his chest, rubbing back and forth against his nipples.

His right hand slides into his shorts up to his wrist. His shorts bulge as he grabs himself, tugging. He looks away as he begins groping in earnest. His left hand runs over chest then through his hair and settles behind his head, bicep bulging.

He gazes into his shorts. With his left hand, he grabs the shorts’ ties. His right hand pops out of his shorts to help. Ties loose, the Velcro rips as he pulls his shorts open. His left hand holds his shorts open as his right hand plunges into his shorts, pulling out his thick cock. He looks away as he strokes himself with his fist, his limp cock flopping over his thumb and forefinger on the down stroke, his scrotum stretching on the upstroke. His cock grows longer and less floppy as he tugs, his left hand rubbing his crotch. He gives one long, slow tug amongst the short ones, stretching it out.

His chest flexes as he strokes himself hard. He lets his cock go and it settles his belly to the left. Thumbs tucked into his shorts, he lifts himself up and slides them over his ass and down to his knees. His large balls are in a tight sack, a pale crimson over his lightly-tanned skin. A dusting of hair spreads from between his thighs. He holds his cock upright and begins jacking himself from head to root. His left hand grabs his balls, pulling them up and away, rubbing them, to settle on gripping them loosely.

He has enough skin to crease over the head of his cock as he strokes up and then pulls down taut. He holds himself still, pulls his cock back to his belly, as his left hand fondles his balls, the sack growing loose. He stretches his cock out, the dark patch of hair pulled up the shaft. He starts jerking, his hand slapping his belly, as his left hand wanders.

His cock is more rigid, his scrotum loose and wrinkly over two large balls. His left hand releases his balls to pool in his crotch, and wanders across his belly and chest to behind his head as his right hand continues to jack himself longer and thicker. He lets his cock go and, pushing down at the root, it stands as its full length. As he squeezes it with both fists, it turns red.

He works the tip of the shaft, just a couple of couple inches. He jerks so fast that it’s a blur. His balls, resting free in his crotch, occasionally rescind as he tenses. The head of his cock is swollen now, flaring out wider than the shaft.

His lips are parted as he takes shallow breaths. His pectorals are bulged into mounds. His belly is still soft below his ribs. He kicks his hips, his cock jutting forward on a curve.

His cock is now a long hard shaft that he jacks vigorously with a loose fist. His breathing is more pronounced with slight gasps. His legs squirm. He grabs his cock with his left hand, squeezing it, making it harder, longer, and more red. Using both hands now, he strokes the whole shaft in tiny jerks, his mouth gaped open. He looks to the side, watching something intensely.

Dropping his cock, he slides his shorts down his legs and off. He turns, his right leg on the ground, his cock poking his belly, his balls stuck between his thighs, his taint thick, as his left foot pushes up and off the lounge chair. He grabs his cock as he stands, stroking straight out from his belly. His left hand rests on his thigh, thick with muscle. A portable DVD player sits on a nearby table.

His breathing is in time to his jerking that shakes his body. He’s tense, his thin chest stretched tight along his breast bone, his biceps bulging, his stomach ridged with the curve and “v” of his obliques leading to the patch of hair between his legs that’s pulled up onto his cock. He puts his left hand behind his head revealing his full side profile with all its nooks and crannies, pectoral, ribs, stomach, hip and thigh.

His left hand explores again, from his shoulder to his chest, sliding down his belly to his crotch. He cups his balls, giving them a tug as he continues to jack himself. He lets his cock go and it sticks straight out. He tenses and it jumps a few inches, over and over again. His left hand behind his head, his right hand cups his balls, rubbing and tugging as his stiff rod bobbles about.

His ass is two humps of muscle clenched tight to narrow bands, deep dimples at his hips. He’s slightly hunched over, stroking, shaking, flush, his mouth gaped open, as if he were one big cock himself.

The head of his cock is shiny, backed by the ridges of his foreskin. When stretched taut, his cock is a mottled crimson with spidery veins protruding from the base. He whacks it hard, making fapping noises as his balls flap.

Relaxed, his ass spreads out full, his thighs thick. He sits down again, not taking his eyes off the porn. He reclines on the chair with his legs spread open. The fine, long hair of his ass crack runs up from his thighs and over his taint. There’s the shadow of his balls bouncing, then the tips of his balls appear and disappear, and then the whole sack, balls flopping. Huge balls in a loose sack stretch all the way down and jump up in a flash, over and over and over again.

With his left hand tugging his cock, he caresses the head with the nimble fingers of his right hand. He stops, stretching the shaft up with one hand and his balls down with the other, the full length on display. He grins, revealing a gap in his front teeth.

He gets back to work, jacking his full length faster and faster. His body tenses and he gulps air feverishly. He gasps and grunts as the first spurt of cum zigzags and then arcs over his left arm. The second is a dribble that lands on his balls. The rest is drips flung to his belly and thighs. One weak stream splatters his chest and rolls down wet. He continues to jerk, making the head froth, his fingers dripping with cum. He slows his jacking and smears the goo over his shaft, pulling tight on the up stroke to milk it out.

His grip is gooey as he strokes, rubbing the tip of a finger over his slit. His cock is loose now and ambles about. His body splattered with cum, he looks up, his eyes pale gray, and grins.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

a day in the life . . .

an update of the "a day in the life" I did a year ago, my how things have changed. You can read the original "a day in the life . . ." here: LINK
_____

I’m up before my alarm clock, anxious. I grab my first cigarette, the puffs of smoke keeping the fluffy white monster at bay. The natural daylight lamp above my bed, on a timer, clicks on. Especially after the worst winter in Michigan history, I bask in its soothing light. Cigarette out, the fluffy white monster creeps onto my chest and the paw-paw dance begins. He’s completely focused as he purrs and needles the covers over my chest. The alarm clock goes off, a rain forest with birds chirping; I smack it off. His little face so serious, he thinks that if he keeps it up he can keep me here. At the strike of 9:00pm, I leap up, tossing the covers and him aside.

I hobble to the bathroom on achy feet for the three “S”s, shit, shower, and shave. Before I’m completely dry, I grab another three “S”s, socks, shorts, and a shirt and start with a little Bag Balm in my crack. Hey, with all the walking I do, if I don’t, I chaff. I pull on my shorts and sit on the bed, un-pausing an episode of Star Trek the Next Generation on my PC / flat screen TV. Bag Balm on my feet, to rub out the kinks and prevent blisters, I pull on my socks. With my Bag Balmy hand, I moisturize my face, the one-two punch of Bag Balm and moisturizer to stave off more wrinkles. After I pull on my t-shirt, I comb my hair. The guy who cuts my hair only knows one style but he’s cheap. When I leave his salon, I look like a 1960’s Ukrainian businessman. I make the best of it, using the cheap gooey version of the expensive hair product I prefer. I grab my second cigarette.

I feed Frank the fish, a blue beta. Dumb fish, I try to feed him in the clear part of the small globe tank, but he always comes up in the plants. So he winds his way through the plants, managing to gulp a couple stray pellets as I turn off his tank light.

Fluffy the cat is waiting for me at the sink, he’s taken to drinking out of the top of the Britta pitcher. I know, but hey, the water gets filtered. I scrape the dry tuna off his plate, give him a teaspoon of “tuna fresh”, as we call it, and fill his dry food bowl. For myself, I put a cup of orange juice, a cup of mixed berries, a teaspoon of flaxseed, and a scoop of protein powder in the blender.

I un-pause Star Trek and grab my third cigarette, checking facebook, twitter, email, and my goodreads group. Cathy’s ranting about how thankless self-publishing is again. A few friends have posted pictures of themselves out and about, enjoying life; I live vicariously through them. On twitter, weather forecasts and news, Jeffrey’s on a roll again, but now’s not the time for pictures from Fratmen. I delete my email spam. No activity on my goodreads group. We have almost 250 members but only a few actively participate and those only rarely.

Time to go, I put on my ridiculous-looking uniform, khakis and a shirt with vertical, blue stripes, as if I should be serving ice cream. Name badge, check, pocket notebook, check, marker, pen, check, box cutter, check, wallet, phone, keys, check, watch, check. My cigarettes and sunglasses I put in my coat pockets. I pass by a lounging Fluffy on the way to the kitchen and poke his belly with my toe. I put on my custom-fitted orthopedic shoes, grab my smoothie, and head out, making a conscious effort to lock the door. Too often, I get OCD and have to go back and check. It’s late dusk, dark but with a clear sky, a warm, quiet night. In my car, I light up my fourth cigarette and a fifth before I get to work. I drink my smoothie then light up a sixth. A few minutes early, I take a deep breath and then punch in the door code . . .

Ten hours later, I’m home. Fluffy’s waiting for me at the door and meows while I take off my shoes. He runs ahead of me to the bedroom, always stopping in front of me so that I have to nudge his fluffy white butt with my foot. He hops on the bed as I empty my shirt pocket of badge, note book, marker, pen, and box cutter. Turning to him, he reaches up to me with a stretch. I grab him and hold him over my shoulder. My ear to his chest, I enjoy his purr until he squirms away to sit cradled in my arm. As he purrs and drools, he’s a drooler, I take off my watch. I pet his fluffy head and scratch his damp chin until he decides enough is enough and leaps down. Sometimes he wants a second hug, but not today, he’s already heading off to the kitchen. I empty my pockets, separating the quarters from the loose change and dropping them into separate bowls. They dropped the price of the coffee-vending machine to fifty cents, so now I’m no longer short of quarters for laundry, bringing home a load’s worth a day from three cups of coffee.

I turn on the tank light and find Frank waiting for me, already gulping as he shakes his flowing blue tail; I sprinkle in some pellets. I stop by the bathroom to douche my nose and splash water over my face and head; dripping wet and with water up my nose, it feels like I just went swimming. Back in my bedroom, I light a cigarette. I un-pause Star Trek as I moisturize my face and check facebook, twitter, email, and my goodreads group. Cathy “shared a link” to an interesting article that I’ll save for later. No pictures from friends as while I’m working they’re all sleeping. On twitter, weather forecasts and news, Jeffrey’s already on a roll again, but no pictures from Fratmen. Robert Grant posted another affirmation; every time he posts I sigh, he’s the perfect man, (sigh). On my goodreads group, a new member is chatty, making random comments on posts. That’s at least good for exposure, and wouldn’t you know, a new request to join the group is in my inbox.

Fluffy the cat is waiting for me at the sink; the Britta pitcher has drained down / filtered the water so I fill it up for him. I scrape the dry tuna off his plate and give him a teaspoon of “tuna fresh”. For myself, I put a cup of white grape juice, a cup of can spinach, well-rinsed, two pear halves from a can, a half of a single-serve plain Greek yogurt, and a half of an avocado, which I have to cut and peel, in the blender.

I turn on the TV in the living room by the power strip, as the boxy TV’s switch doesn’t work anymore. I fire up the old Xbox and the VCR to play it through. The fitness program starts; I bypass the workout for a yoga routine. I like the combination of downward dog to plank to up dog, to plank, to downward dog as it builds strength in my arms and stomach. The knees to chest and hip openers un-stiffen my back and legs. I through in some head rolls, twists, and side extensions for my neck and shoulders. While the program’s doing the corpse pose, I do crunches on my “bean”, like an exercise ball only bean-shaped for stability. I gulp the rest of my smoothie, rinse the glass and fill it with iced tea.

Back in my bedroom, I light a cigarette. I un-pause Star Trek and check social media again. Fluffy’s playful, and charging back and forth through the apartment. He pounces on the bed, sees the cloud of smoke, and charges off again. After I finish my cigarette, I play with him a bit. His favorite game being grabbing my arm with his claws and biting me while rabbit kicking. This takes place under his tree, the Christmas tree still up, lit but with no ornaments. He’s also into yarn now, so we play with that a bit.

After stopping by the bathroom to treat my wounds with peroxide and Neosporin, I light another cigarette, un-pause Star Trek, and check social media again. I want to write, I want to read, I desperately need to look for a new job, but being so drained and achy from work, I can’t focus. So I lay in bed, smoking and watching Star Trek, maybe grabbing a snack, until I drift off to sleep . . .

Saturday, August 31, 2013

change . . .

Another Writing Group writing assignment, (love my writing group!) This one will explain where I've been for the last three months, as I haven't been active online or writing much at all:
_____


change

by scavola

Quarters stacked on a shelf in neat piles for easy counting, five dollars plus some, just short of two loads. I need to do like four loads. I could make do with two, one work uniforms and one sheets, but how long has the rest of the pile been sitting there? I sniff it . . .

I sort the laundry, putting colors in the hamper and bundling up one minimum load of whites and two more loads of whites that should probably be three. Five loads would be fifteen dollars. I could go to the bank and, checking my wallet, buy a roll of quarters or two. The bank, or actually, credit union, is twenty minutes away. And I’d have to take a shower and wear my good clothes, not my grubby clothes.

I might as well go to the laundry mat ‘cause they got a change machine and it’s always “laundry day”, people wear whatever’s clean, for better or for worse. The nicer laundry mat, with soccer moms in t-shirts and leggings, is like thirty minutes away. The shitty laundry mat, with obese women in inappropriately unbuttoned day gowns, is right around the corner; I don’t think I’d go back though, if anything because their old machines don’t get my clothes very clean.

Fuck it. If I go out and grab a few quarters then I can just go to the apartment complex’s laundry room. The machines are smaller and don’t do as good a job but I can run back home during the wash and dry cycles. At least I can during the week days; on the weekend there’s too much chance that people will fuck with my shit or steal it. My shit hasn’t been fucked with or stolen, but it’s that kind of apartment complex with that kind of people. (We were in the news recently, a baby boy stolen right out of his mother’s arms. The baby boy was recovered but still, who does that?)

At the Wow-mart across the street I can pick up a few things and hopefully get some quarters in the process. I grab my loaded hamper and head out of my ghetto apartment, past the dumpster that’s ripe with spoils like the trash compactor at work. By ‘ghetto’ I don’t mean urban or black, but Eastern European. Old men, who all look like Ed Asner, dressed in dark suits, hats, and shined shoes, stroll around with their hands behind their backs clasping rosary beads. Old women, who all look like Ed Asner, wearing black from head to toe, sit on lawn chairs on the grass, rosary beads in one hand, cigarettes in the other, watching over children running around half-naked.

There’re silhouettes of people hanging out in the stairwells as I drive by. Younger folk wearing a mismatch or ill-fitting clothes, like they got them free (or stole them from the apartment complex’s laundry room). They stare at me, as if longing for a ride somewhere, anywhere. Only about half of the people here have cars but they can all afford cigarettes, booze, and cell phones . . .

I have to loop around the access road to the highway to get to the ghetto Wow-mart. By ‘ghetto’ I mean run down and dirty. There’s a shiny new Wow-mart in a better part of town, but that’s like twenty minutes away and they turn their noses up at me like they know I don’t belong there, even though I once did. Are my clothes mismatched or ill-fitting? They’re the same clothes I’ve had for years, maybe that’s the problem. Or maybe it’s my ten dollar hair cut. I bring in a cart from the parking lot as I go in, a work habit.

By ‘ghetto’ I don’t mean black, because everyone here is a shade of gray, quite drawn and dull. No one greets you at Wow-mart, no one smiles or even makes eye contact. (If we don’t smile and make eye contact where I work, we get disciplined.) Customer Service is busy and I know why, everyone wanting to return shit they found on the street for cash for meth. Turning away from G.M., (a retail term meaning ‘General Merchandise’), I head towards their grocery department. I get out my list. When you’re poor, you make a list and stick to it so that you get only what you need, except for maybe Fritos. I don’t need Fritos, but I want Fritos. They don’t make generic brand Fritos, I checked, and name brand is pricey, but I think I can spare some change for Fritos.

My order comes to $17.94. Fuck! I should put back the Fritos, but I want the Fritos. “Can I get some quarters?”

“Huh?” the cashier asks, now looking at me like “are you gonna be a problem?” She hands me a couple of dollars, a nickel, and a penny. I offer a dollar back to her, which she stares at like it’s loaded.

“May I please buy some quarters?”

She grabs the phone. “Customer needs assistance on aisle five.” With the mash of a few buttons, she signs off her register, resigning herself into a reclining position, arms crossed over her chest. Customers groan and pull out of line.

“What he want?” the manager asks the cashier.

“Quarters,” she says, rolling her eyes.

“He want quarters?” the manager asks; the cashier nods. “You give him change?” The cashier rips off my receipt to show the manager, who grabs her glasses from a chain around her neck to read the receipt. “You done,” she tells me, “thankyoushoppingWow-mart.”

“But I need change,” I say, offering her the dollar.

“You want change?” she asks with a scoff; I nod. “Then buy some gum!”

My cushy Fortune-500 job in the city, where I only occasionally picked up a pen or typed on a computer, my secluded retreat in the mountains, (with a full-size washer and dryer), my friends, living large, my body, my youth, the last fifteen years of my life . . . lost to the recession. I’m back where I started, back home, but with only professional experience and an MBA to show for it. With my experience and education, I’m now only qualified to stock shelves at a supermarket on the graveyard shift. They work me like a dog, treat me like an idiot, and still I don’t make enough to make ends meet. I’m too old for this shit. At the end of the day, I hobble into bed and crash until I have to (struggle to) get up and go back to work. Beyond survival, I don’t have the luxury of anything else. Am I making a living?

I want change. I need change. I buy some gum.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

the secret . . .

Another Writing Group writing assignment, (love my writing group!) This one I'll be submitting (to be considered) for publication in a periodical / gay lit. mag., so any critiques would help!
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The Secret

by scavola

Against the onslaught of frenetic beams of colored light, a mass of people gyrated in silhouette to a tribal beat enhanced by synthesizers. The deafening music left no room for thought, only feeling, and that feeling was elation. Young and full of life, in the warm press of bodies they shared this in bumps and grinds.
In the shadows, I stood alone, sipping my drink. A girl said “hi”, placing her hand on the high-top table. With one look, I deemed her unworthy. I wasn’t sure what I looked for but whatever ‘it’ was, she didn’t have it. I knew what she liked, my eyes, I have ‘bedroom eyes’. Otherwise, I was average, or even less than.
“Why are you all by yourself?” she asked, her hand moving to my shoulder.
“I’m here with friends.”
“Yeah? And where are they?” As her hand travelled across my back like a tarantula, she moved in closer. She reeked of, what’s that scent? Vanilla with spice and a hint of boiled cabbage . . . oh, that’s it, desperation.
“Good question. I guess I should go find them, thanks.” I gave her my best insincere grin.
“Whatever,” she said, rolling her eyes as she left.
I lost track of my other friends, but didn’t lose track of Justin. His fair skin glowed in the black light as did his bright white t-shirt and pale blue jeans. The rest of us had to dress up in pants, shirts, and even jackets, the proper plumage for the mating dance. Justin could dress down and still look good. The boy next door, he wasn’t exactly handsome, maybe cute with his bulbous nose and wide ears, but he had ‘it’ to the point it was blinding; like staring into the sun, nothing in periphery mattered. A Goth-girl wanna be eclipsed him, drawn to him like a moth to a flame.
Careful little girl, I thought, you might get burned. I grew tense and more and more so until the others came to me, ready to go. They asked me where Justin was, since we were typically inseparable. I made a bee-line to him, tapped him on the shoulder, and told him. He needed a minute. “For what?” I asked, giving the girl my best ‘eat shit’ look.
We all waited ten minutes, and then I told him again, pleading. After ten minutes more, I told him again, forcefully. The next time, I yanked him off the floor by his belt, breaking him away from the girl before she kissed him.
“She liked me,” he said in my ear, over the din of the music. “She was going to give me her number.”
“I’m sure she gives lots of guys her number.”
“You’re just jealous.” He shoved me away a little forcibly.
I backhanded his chest. “I could care less. You could hang out with her all night if we didn’t have to go.”
“If we have to go, then where is everybody?” His glare, white hot, burned.
“They were here a minute ago.” The room now spinning in silence, I’d lost track of them again. “Maybe they got tired of waiting . . .”
The Goth-girl wanna be was gone too.

“Son of a . . .” He was drowned out as my head collided with a wall. The shoving would’ve been the end of it, if security hadn’t spotted us and thrown us out. In a tangled mess, we struggled, limbs flailing. By the time the others found us, I was on top, holding him down. Something I’d enjoyed, something I should’ve enjoyed, now it made me uncomfortable, feeling his anger rise. I hopped up and tried to put some distance between us but the others had to hold Justin back as he raged.
“Tell them!” he yelled, “Tell them what you told me last night!”
He broke away, his fist coming right at me. I parried the blow, twisted his arm behind him, and knocked his legs out from under him. He yelled as his knees ground against the concrete, ripping his jeans and abrading him.
“Chill the fuck out!” I pulled his arm up until it was too painful for him to struggle and then a bit more.
This would turn out badly, but how badly hadn’t been decided. I looked to the drawn faces of the others; they were as scared as I was, but not for the same reason. I couldn’t hurt him like that, even though he could hurt me, but I had to do something.
I forced him down to whisper in his ear. “You promised . . .”
Through clenched teeth he muttered, “Fuck you faggot.”
I shoved him hard and stormed off, for the first time, alone. 

***** 

The night before, the ‘last night’ Justin referred to, he and I had had yet another talk about how I’m too affectionate, and we’re getting too old for that, and people make comments, and, “Are you sure you’re not gay?”
Outing someone while driving down dark, winding roads at fifty miles per hour isn’t the best idea, as in that moment my life flashed before my eyes, childhood sleepovers, the high school locker room, how Amy, Carla, and Vickie paled in comparison to Tom, Dick, and Harry, and yes, Justin, especially after ‘the incident’. I managed to stay on the road and replied, “Maybe.” This was the first time I hadn’t vehemently denied it.
“That would explain everything,” he said, patting me on the back, “but no poopy-dick for me.”
“Whatever,” I said, swallowing my heart.
In consideration, he nodded. “I’m happy for you, now you can start living your life, and I’ll be there for you.”
“You won’t tell anybody?” I asked, now scared of the reactions I’d get.
“I won’t say anything ‘til you’re ready, I promise.”
I quickly leaned in and pecked his cheek, which he rubbed sorrowfully with a ‘yuck’. He let me kiss him again when I dropped him off at home, for me to feel what it was like. He was that good of a friend. 

***** 

Justin told the others after I’d stormed off, but I didn’t know it then. It remained a big secret until I was ready to tell them, which, after what had happened, wasn’t for a long, long time.