Northern Downpour

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It had been a little over two weeks since I unraveled with Charlie on his bed and completely changed the dynamic of what it meant to be us. In that time, plenty had changed. His knee had been healing up good enough. School came to a temporary close for the awesomeness of fall break. Lacrosse practice had been suspended until the weather cleared up. Nothing but gratuitous amounts of rain, rain, rain. The field was like Atlantis. There were quite a few things to be concentrating on in the world, even besides football season on the tube. I poured over brochures for different colleges. Charlie was accepted at Trinity, even into Kappa Alpha Alpha as a legacy, but I needed a backup school in case lacrosse wasn’t enough. This was one of those nasty rainy days with no practice. I sat at the kitchen table, waiting for Charlie to come over. He’d finally been able to lose the crutches and walk for himself. We were supposed to watch the Patriots today. Mom was at work and was bringing home wings for dinner later. It would surely be a good night.

To be honest, not too much had changed with us, though. I felt more comfortable with him than I had in the past…it was like a great weight being lifted off my chest. As far as doing, you know, couply things, though…not so much. In the privacy of our bedrooms at night, staying over, things had changed. I wasn’t afraid to seek comfort anymore. I’d grown accustomed to feeling his warm arms around my belly and on those nights that we spent apart, I craved it so bad. His smell, a mix of Irish Spring and Old Spice Code Red, lingered on my nightshirt. (Between you and me, it rarely saw the wash. I know, right?) Call me girly, call me somebody’s bitch, but I wanted more. I thought that it would be like with a girl, all the affection and stuff. Yeah, part of it’s on me. I didn’t try too hard. I guess I was still afraid of him just being all, “No, give me space” or something. I was determined that today be different, though. It would. I’d get over it and take what I wanted. What was that ding? Oh, doorbell, yeah.

I opened the door, and it was Mom. “Francisco, honey, did you take out the trash yet? (I did) And did the catering company call about my brunch on Thursday? (Nope, not once) Here, these are for you and Charlie (oooh, BBQ and 911 sauce), I’ve got to change and dash for my meeting with Jen (Jen? The cute redheaded lady with the glasses?) in HR.” With her cosmetics company starting to finally pick up business, she was always busy. But on the good side, we had money now. She wasn’t stressed anymore and could afford nice suits and stuff. And the allowance wasn’t bad either. She dashed off to her bedroom and shut the door, leaving me with a couple Aeropostale bags and two buckets of wings. Nothing wrong with that, is there? Ding again…this time it was who I hoped.

“Hey, what’s up? I saw your mom’s car’s still there,” he gestured to the cennet mahallesi escort Jetta. He looked great. Uncombed and wet, sweats and a team hoodie. Perfect. “Yeah, she’s got dinner with her friend at work, she’s just leaving. Look, dude, wings. I’ve got ESPN on in there already. Come on in,” I ushered him in, taking the wet jacket and hanging it up on the doorknob to dry. I was nervous, but I leaned up for a quick kiss. Worst fears, he backed off. “She’ll be in there a while, man, it’s okay,” I held onto his arm and moved in again, this time meeting no resistance. He relaxed and slipped his tongue across my bottom lip…warm, tight feelings in my sweats. God, I had to break away before things got too hot. Good thing I did, too, Mom came out looking for her bag.

“Hey there, bud, how’s that knee?” She smiled, but she was in a hurry. “I’m good, Mrs. Kala, got a date?” He cracked open the first bucket and sniffed, delighted with the 911 sauce. “Pssh, you wish, Mr. Mellon. Gotta go, don’t wreck the house, don’t wreck the car, don’t wreck yourself. Love you!” And she was out the door. “So, bro…” he slung an arm around my waist. “What’s up? You’re not yourself today.” He knows me too well.

The brain-scaldingly spicy aroma of 911 wings filled the house as we loaded up plates and clanked open a couple cokes. We plopped down on the couch under the blanket and scootched up close. God, it felt so good feeling him again…I dreamed about this every night that we’d been apart. And come to think of it, that’s not all I needed last night…just thinking about his soft body and that too-much-sun-on-the-vineyard tan…GAH. Tried to squash that image, thinking hard hard hard about little old ladies at the grocery store, old socks, anything to kill my growing…excitement. Oop, too late, he already felt it. “Hey, what was that?” he felt down my thigh and much, much too close to…”Whoa, dude, too close,” No, no, not too close! Touch me there, please! Why was I afraid of him? I didn’t mind when it came to making him feel good, but it just…scared the devil out of me. He was slightly confused.

He slipped his hand under the waistband of my sweats, sliding his fingertips into the secure tight band of my jockeys. “Cisco, come on, man. Let me feel.” I involuntarily jerked a little, jarred at the invasion of space. God, why did it bother me now? He’d touched me before, in his bedroom, that time when this all started. And how many times before that did I dream of that very thing? Maybe it was some sort of quarter-life crisis thingy. Like how did I know that what I’d been feeling all this time was real? Well, obviously it was real, you know, guys don’t generally like do sex and stuff if they’re not in love. For-real in love, not like those goth dudes that don’t know what the hell they want to do, with the makeup and hair and what-not. I’m going esenler escort to freak myself out into another panic attack.

“Man, I’m just…I don’t know what it is. Wait, wait, did he just give them the penalty? Oh, that’s some bull right there!” I noticed the little stripey man on the screen waving his arms and breaking up a dogpile. It was damn hard concentrating on relationship stuff AND the game. The stereotype is a stereotype for a reason, heh.

“Cisco, please,” he set the plate of debris and wing parts on the coffee table and pulled me close. “You can’t just push me away. What is it you need? I don’t…shit, I don’t know what I’m doing.”

It was a solid question.

What did I want?

I tend to want lots of things at once, and sometimes they contradict each other. I want him to love me and hug me and touch every inch of me, but I can’t wait to get as far away as I can. The weird is stifling. I know deep in the back of my mind that he’s weirded out and…and…agh, the room is swirling. Colours like paint in a blender. A sick knot twists in my stomach and my chest feels tight, it’s so hard to breathe. My head weighs so much more than the rest of me, and when I get up to back up off the couch–


Sound hits my ears before the light hits my eyes. Wah-wah, muddle muddle. Can’t make it out. My head hurts. Ooh, but what’s so warm? Blanket. What’s on my head? Hand. Light flooding vision. Ceiling. Charlie.

Charlie. My boy. Blondie with the knitted brow.Taking care of me this time.

“Are you okay, man, what’s up? Was that another attack? Should I get your inhaler?”

“Nuh. M’good. Up.” He hefted me up and back onto the couch.

“When you’re less dumb, we are so talking about this. That was another panic attack, wasn’t it? Be honest, man.”

I nodded and once he sat down, I buried my head in his shoulder.

“No, no, let me check your head.” Pressure on the forehead, not what hit the floor first, but still sore. “Is that sore still?” More nodding. “Why did you freak out on me? I didn’t mean to suffocate you or anyth-“

My head was clear enough to find his face and put my hand over his mouth.

“Charlie. Shut up for like two seconds.” Wasn’t trying to be rude. But it was final…YES! THEY WON! HELL YES! SUPERBOWL HERE WE COME! I mean, not yet, but still, it was a slaughter out there. In a moment of manly bonding, we high-fived and wooted at the screen. We hugged, and after the initial rush of touchdown-induced euphoria, settled into a comfortable hold. This was what I wanted, and I felt this peaceful warmth spread over me, radiating from my chest. I could tell him anything. There was a reason I fell in love with this particular guy. He’s my best friend.

“Charlie, I want you to make me feel like this always, okay? I can’t ask for it, but just know, right?” I raised up esenyurt escort and planted a soft kiss on the side of his mouth. That didn’t stop there, though…he lazily stroked those long fingers through my hair and pressed me in for another. The heat of the wings gave him a spicy twang, it was hot in more ways than one. Was it time to let my defense down? I evaluated this decision as I let him lay me down and raise my shirt. Lips fluttered down my chest to my navel.


Blurry vision and carnival colourwheel spinning again, but for a different reason.There were too many feelings to process all at once. I could hardly concentrate on any one sensation, the soft wetness of his tongue, the hand with its rough texture and delicious pressure, slicked with-what? Spit? Warm and slick. My legs tightening and releasing. Breathing and heart thumping hard and fast enough to break apart. The swimming dizzy train of thoughts in my mind, incoherent but all completely true:

oh god

youre better than lindsay ever was oh god

please god dont let mom come in

right there

he must love me

He did love me, didn’t he? Was it too early to be thinking that? Of course he did, guys don’t suck off just anybody… Was-too late-explosion of feeling and every kind of gladness all at once.

My next conscious thought was feeling the gentle scratching of a towel on my most tender parts. How embarrassing. He didn’t have to clean up.

“Oh, hey, you…aww, you didn’t have to do that,” I tried to protest, but he kept at it anyway.

Charlie disappeared back into the guest bathroom, probably disposing of the towel. He returned and kneeled between my knees on the floor, hugging me tight.

“I wanted to. You know, you’re not the only person who gives.” Another soft kiss. My head began to swim again. “So what do you want to do now, man? The sun’s not up for long. I told Mom I was staying here tonight.” he folded around and sat crosslegged in front of me. I looked around the room at the organized racks of DVDs, the fridge, the pool table. And out the window, at the rain still stubbornly hitting the concrete and washing the lawn to death. I had a wild thought. “We haven’t played in the mud since we were little, Chuck. Race you to the back?”

There was that playful devil, that sneaky blonde boy I fell in love with. Long strides to the door with a disproportionately loud thudding like cattle herding. I was out first, but tripped on the steps and went down face-first into the fresh mud and water. “God, you’re filthy,” he laughed, and jumped on top of me, splattering me in the back of the head with goopy earth.

We wrestled for the longest time, and it occurred to me: this boy is my best friend. He loves me and wants me to be happy. We can make love and we still have this, watching the game and fooling around. This is perfect. I couldn’t ask for more.

And just like that? The panic attacks stopped for a long while. I was comfortable, truly so. That night, fresh and clean and still smelling like soap, we fit snugly together under the sheets. It was relieving, feeling him breathing against me and knowing that no matter what, the hard part was over.

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