The Price of Friendship

Chapter 2

“Who’s up for a round of DDR?” Peter asked once the last of the pizzas had been consumed.

They hadn’t been eaten; Angus had been right about that. ‘Inhaled’ would have been accurate. I couldn’t imagine where Drew and Peter put all the calories they absorbed, but between them they ate almost half, leaving the remainder for the rest of us.


Peter stared at me as if I was a creature from another planet, which is what I was feeling like after the evening’s revelations.

“Dance Dance Revolution! You’ve never heard of it?”

“Why don’t you show him? That way he’ll know better than to go up against you,” Drew said.

Peter jumped up. “Well, come on, Rick! Let’s get going.”

We all headed back to the arcade games, and I got to see Peter in action on the DDR machine. Drew whispered to me that Peter was showing off by picking a particularly challenging routine, but I was impressed. I initially begged off trying it out as being way too difficult, but Drew encouraged me to try an easier dance than the one Peter had demonstrated. I found it to be a lot of fun, especially when Drew played on the machine next to me, doing the same routine at the same time.

I even managed to forget for a while that I was supposed to be Drew’s new boyfriend. I had to admit that I liked the guy, and I was definitely in his debt for introducing me to his friends. I just kept my mental fingers crossed that he wouldn’t want me to do anything gross.

“Again?” Drew asked me after our second go on the machine.

“How about giving someone else a turn? It was my idea!” Peter was tapping his foot and his arms were crossed.

“Why don’t you and Peter have a go?” I suggested. “I’m not that fit — I could do with a break.”

“Ha! This’ll be easy,” Peter said, grinning at Drew. “Want to be wiped off the dance floor?”

“Never!” Drew winked at me while Peter took my place. He beckoned me over and whispered, “He’s going to beat me, but I’ll give him a good run for his money.”

I nodded and watched while the two argued about which selection they would try. I glanced around and pushed the two guys from my mind when I saw Sue comforting Claire in the corner of the arcade. I glanced back once and saw Peter selecting something on the DDR machine, and then I slipped away.

I wasn’t sure what I would do, but everyone had been so good for me that I felt I had to at least go over and say something. I didn’t know what it was that had upset Claire, but I wanted to check if I could help. I didn’t think that would mess things up.

“Hi. Is there anything I can do?” I asked when I reached where they were sitting.

Claire was sniffling while being hugged by Sue. Sue glanced up, a frown on her face, and opened her mouth, but appeared to change her mind on what she was about to say. She looked back at Claire.

“Why don’t you try talking things over with Rick? He’s got no history on this, and he might be able to help.”

Claire wiped her eyes and looked at me for a moment, before nodding. Sue gave her one final hug before standing up. “I’ll be with Joe if you need me.”

“Thanks, Sue.” Claire dropped her gaze to the tiled floor and just stayed there, slumped like a wilting flower.

I sat down next to her, not quite as close as Sue had been. I reached out a hand and put it on one of Claire’s. “I’m here, if you want to talk.”

Her head still bowed, Claire twisted her hand around to clasp mine. She squeezed momentarily before starting to speak.

“I don’t know if you know, but I’ve just broken up with my boyfriend.”

“I heard that earlier. Phil, wasn’t it?”

“Yeah. He’s a homophobic prick who can’t stop putting Drew down, even though he knows I like Drew and there’s nothing wrong with being gay. I’d finally had enough and told him I never wanted to see him again.”

I just held her hand. I didn’t know what to say — that sort of thing was something I had never done before. I decided to just listen and let her get things off her chest.

She looked up. Her eyes were red and I could see tracks down her cheeks. Her dark brown hair was partially dishevelled, though I liked the way it framed her face.

“Then how come I’m feeling so miserable?”

I took a chance and shuffled closer to her, putting an arm around her shoulders. “How long were you going out with him?”

“Just over two years.”

I guessed she was about my age, since she was in the same year as Drew and me. “That’s a long time.”

“It was all fine until Phil found out about Drew. Then he changed.”

“How long ago was that?”

“About six months ago.”

I was surprised. “I thought Drew’s been out for a couple of years.”

Claire smiled at me. Even though she was sniffing back tears, I could see the inner beauty that had probably attracted Phil.

“Phil didn’t go to our school. He’s started an apprenticeship, so he only met the others in the group when we were on social outings. Drew doesn’t usually show his gay side, not since he dumped James, so the times they met they got along fine. It was only when someone made a comment at a party that Phil found out. It was one of those things that had never cropped up in a conversation before.”

“Gay side?” I blurted out before I could stop myself. I didn’t want the conversation to be about Drew, even though I had a morbid curiosity about that aspect of him.

Claire gave me a weak smile. “Drew used to be quite affectionate with James, teasing him a lot. James returned as good as he got, too. When you saw the two of them together, there was no doubt that they were a couple. Since James cheated on him, though, Drew hasn’t done those things with anyone. He doesn’t flirt with other guys, either. Apart from his lack of interest in girls, he’s just a typical male, so it really wasn’t surprising that Phil didn’t realize.”

“Would it be rude to ask how old you are, Claire?”

She gave a brief snort of laughter. “A true gentleman.” She leant over and gave me a kiss on the cheek. “Drew’s a lucky guy. I’m almost seventeen. Phil’s eighteen.”

I blushed at both the compliment and the kiss. “Does that mean Phil’s your first serious relationship?” I was confident with my guess, but I worded it as a question in case I was wrong.

“Yes.” She paused for a second. “Do you think that’s it? I just need to get over him?”

“I wouldn’t put it that way, but you’ve got a lot of investment in that relationship. Regrets about losing that investment can be expected.”

Claire grabbed me in a short, spontaneous hug. “Thank you, Rick. That makes sense.”

I wasn’t happy that she let go so quickly, but I smiled anyway. Through a bit of blind luck, I thought I had helped. I watched as Claire pulled out a tissue and wiped her eyes. She gave me a weak grin. “It’s going to take me some time, isn’t it?”

I nodded. I didn’t want to say anything else, just in case I messed things up. Claire seemed to be in a better frame of mind, and I thought it was best to leave it at that.

We talked some more, with me doing most of the listening and Claire doing most of the talking. There was a lot that I sensed she didn’t want to say, but I was happy just to be there, keeping her company while she got some things off her chest. I think my simply being non-judgemental was enough to help her. After maybe fifteen minutes, there were longer and longer pauses in our conversation.

“Would you mind if I came to talk to you more, if I need to?” she asked eventually.

My eyes went wide. I hadn’t thought she would want more than just that one chat. “Sure! Anytime.” I patted my pockets, looking for something to write on. “I’ll just give you my number, if I can find a piece of paper.”

She chuckled as she pulled out her phone. “Just tell me what it is and I’ll store it straight away.”

The only person I had exchanged phone numbers with before then was Drew. It was something I never had a cause to do, and so I hadn’t thought of the obvious solution. I hoped the lighting where we sat hid the flush I felt in my cheeks as I gave her both my home and mobile numbers.

“I must look a fright.” She looked me in the eye. “Please be honest. Do I need to tidy up?”

I smiled. “You look absolutely beautiful to me, but if you want to clean up, go ahead.”

Her laugh sounded a little forced, but I could tell she was feeling better. “Definitely a gentleman. All the good ones really are gay.” Before I could react, she gave me another kiss on the cheek. “I’ll be back soon.”

I sat there, lost in my thoughts about how wonderful it felt to have people like Claire liking me, when someone sat down beside me. I glanced over and saw Drew’s smiling face.

“Sue told me you were helping Claire, and kept me away. From what I saw just now, it looks like you did some good.”

“Umm… well… I hope so.” I stared down at my feet. I felt like a fraud in so many ways, but I didn’t know what to do.

Drew put his arm across my shoulders, just like I had done with Claire. “I’m sure you did. Now, I think you need to lighten up. What would you like to do: shoot zombies, ride motorbikes, drive cars, do tricks on skateboards, or race space flyers?”

My head snapped up at the last item. “Space flyers?”

Drew chuckled. “That’s as good a name for them as any. Come on, I’ll show you.”

He stood up and waited for me. In a moment of panic, I thought he was going to hold my hand, but he just waved for me to follow him and then lead me around to where the ride was located.

His name for the ride wasn’t too far off. It was basically a racing game with a space theme, but the seats were mobile and rolled with the movement of the vehicles, so much so that the rider needed to wear a seat belt.

I was hooked after one go. There were two machines, but one was in use, so Drew and I alternated for about forty minutes. I had gone back to the counter three times to get more coins, and I was about to go again when I realised I would still need to pay for dinner. The solitary five dollar note in my wallet was unlikely to be enough.

“Um… Drew? I think I’ve had enough for now.”

He gave me a puzzled look and then glanced down at the wallet in my hand. “If you’re short, I can lend you some. I didn’t tell you how much we normally spend playing games here, so it’s my fault if you’ve run out.”

“Nah, it’s all right. I can make do.” I appreciated his offer, but I didn’t know if he was making it as a friend or as a boyfriend. I could accept the former, but I was uncomfortable with the latter, as I felt it would put me under an obligation.

I rolled my eyes at my thoughts. I was already in deep; a little deeper wasn’t going to make any difference. I then spotted my rarely used credit card.

“Is there an ATM around here?”

“Sure. There’s a few, depending on which bank you want to use.”

He took me around to the one for my bank and I cashed up. I realised if that was going to be a regular Friday night thing, I would definitely need a job. I had a reasonable amount of money in my account because I had been saving up my allowance for some new computer games, but those had dropped in priority. I felt uncomfortable with being Drew’s boyfriend, but for his friendship and that of his friends, I didn’t hesitate. I’d been alone for too long.

* * *

“I’ve been thinking…” Angus started.

“That’s a new one,” Joe quipped. He dodged Angus’s lazy swing.

“Ignoring someone who shall remain nameless…,” Angus continued.

“He means you,” Sue said to Joe in a loud whisper.

“… I’ve been thinking about Rick’s situation.”

I quickly swallowed the piece of lemon chicken I had in my mouth. We’d bought Chinese for dinner and were back in the food court with a multitude of dishes in the middle of the table.

“What about it?” Drew asked, flicking a curious glance in my direction.

“He hasn’t told his parents, but maybe they’ve already got an inkling. Drew, you said your mum suspected before you came out.”

I reached for a spring roll. I didn’t want to meet anyone’s eye, and if I stuffed my mouth, I wouldn’t have to talk.

“Do you think they know?” Claire asked me before I could take a bite.

“I don’t think so. I’d be really surprised if they think I’m gay,” I replied honestly.

“You have to admit, Rick doesn’t give any hints out,” Peter said. “I assumed he was straight when I met him.”

“Drew picked it up,” Angus said. He gave Drew a quizzical look. “How did you work it out? With the so-called gaydar of yours that you’ve always complained is broken?”

Drew grinned sheepishly. “I’m not really sure. I suspect there was a bit of wishdar in it, initially. I saw Rick approaching the gate, and wondered if he was going to be coming to our school. I was over the moon when he walked in the gate.” He turned and winked at me. “Just a bit taller than me, and with curly blond hair, and a wonderfully lost expression on his face. I just had to make him my friend.”

“You were just drooling over him, in other words,” Joe said, smirking.

Under the table, Drew’s hand slipped into mine. I thought he meant it as a reassuring gesture. I liked the way he said he’d wanted to be my friend, but Joe’s comment gave it a sinister edge. I felt used, but I had to be honest with myself. I was in a state of wanting friends so much that I would take any I could get. So, I was actually using Drew, in my own way.

Sue elbowed Joe in the ribs and scowled at him. I gave her a smile of thanks.

Drew ran his free hand through his hair. “Yeah, I guess so, at least at first. It certainly hasn’t hurt that he’s a nice guy and we have a lot in common.”

“Like both being gay?” Claire asked.

“I didn’t know that, then. I hoped, but I wasn’t sure. So I dropped a few hints that I’m gay, and he seemed okay. In fact, he seemed really eager to know me better. Then tonight, before we left my place, we had a chat. When he put his arm around me, I knew. He told me he understood what I had been through before I came out, and that he’s been through similar.”

Drew smiled at me, while I sat frozen in shock, a slight grin stuck on my face to hide my inner turmoil. I had reacted to his revelation about his one-time lack of friends and what that had meant. I hadn’t even considered the possibility that he would take it as meaning I had the same underlying reasons for my depression.

Drew turned back to Angus and the others. “So, it’s only because we talked about it that I really knew. I don’t think anyone would pick him as being gay without doing that.”

“Okay, but there’s still something he needs to be ready for,” Angus said. He caught my eye. “A lot of people know Drew, and if you spend a lot of time alone in his company, they’ll wonder. You’ll probably get a few questions asked.”

I pursed my lips. That thought had been in the back of my mind since the whole surreal situation had started. “What do you think I should do?”

“Just be yourself,” Drew said, squeezing my hand under the table. “I’d like you to be honest, but coming out’s not something to do lightly. If you have to lie and deny it, I’ll support you.”

I jerked my head up and down once. “Okay. I’ll try to be honest, if I can.” Things was getting more complicated by the second.

“Don’t worry if you can’t,” Peter said. He smiled reassuringly. “We’ll protect you, one way or another. That’s what friends are for.”

I wondered if I was really being a friend, considering the deception I had going.

I looked around the table, at the great bunch of people who, while knowing me for only a short time — a couple of hours in the case of Joe and Sue — were willing to help me and do what they could to protect me, just because Drew wanted them to. My body shuddered involuntarily, as I thought of how they could easily do the opposite if I did something to make Drew hate me.

“Hey, are you okay?” Drew asked. “You’re shaking!”

“I’m just worried about the future,” I said, trying to keep to my policy of being as honest as I could be.

He leant over as if he was going to give me a hug and kiss, but Sue’s loud cough interrupted him.

“Careful, Drew. You might like to show affection publicly, but it’s not going to look good for Rick’s straight image.”

“Sorry. You’re right.” Drew turned back to me and gave me a soft smile. “Don’t worry too much. I’ll be here for you, I promise.”

I gave him a sickly smile while staying silent. I was glad when he didn’t interpret my expression correctly.

* * *

“Did you enjoy the evening?” Drew asked as we strolled along the road towards his house.

That was a loaded question, and I knew I couldn’t answer it fully. I decided to stick to the more pleasant part of the truth.

“It was great meeting everyone, and I loved the games. Everyone was really kind, too. They’re a great bunch of people.”

“That they are. You made a good impression on Sue, too. She said I’m really lucky — that you’re a good catch.” Drew grinned at me. “I think that was the general consensus of everyone I asked.”

I pondered the implications of that statement. “How many did you ask?”

“All of them. I wanted to know what they thought. I so much wanted them all to like you.”

That was the answer I was afraid of. Despite his apparent confidence, it seemed to me that Drew was insecure. He needed his friends’ approval, and that meant that it was almost certain I’d earn their disapproval if I upset him. Sue had told me outright that I had better not hurt him.

I was torn in two. One part of me wanted to end the charade and tell Drew the truth. The other, greater part couldn’t face the consequences of that action.

“You know that we don’t really know each other that well,” I said, trying to seed some doubts.

“I know, but we can take our time. There’s no rush. I’m not planning on us having sex until Tuesday or Wednesday.”

I stumbled to a stop and stared at him in disbelief. His angelic expression clued me in. “You’re joking, right?”

He laughed. “Yep, but the look on your face was amazing.” His grin slipped away. “You’re not ready, either, are you?”

I nodded, surprised and pleased at the question. I gave him a smile. “I’m new to all of this. I really don’t want to rush into anything.”

Drew glanced around. The road was quiet and there didn’t appear to be anyone in the area. He then stepped up to me and put an arm across my shoulder. I flinched, but he made it look like we were just a couple of mates. “No rush, I promise, Rick. I don’t want to fuck this up, especially not by fucking too soon.”

I swallowed. That was something I wasn’t even ready to think about, except in vague, distant terms.

We started moving again, and after a few strides Drew dropped his arm. We walked in silence, not touching, but exchanging glances from time to time. Drew’s glances were always smiles. I tried to make mine the same, though I kept wondering how long I was going to get away with fooling him.

“Did you want to come and see me tomorrow? We’re playing at home this week,” Drew said, as we approached the corner to his street.

After a moment of confusion, I realised he was talking about football. “If I can. Mum and Dad may have something for me to do, but if I’m free, I’ll come. Where’s the game?”

He told me, along with the start time. “It’ll be cool if you can make it. We can head back to my place and then from there to the cinema. Did you have any preference for what you’d like to see?”

“No preference at all. I don’t even know what’s playing.”

There was silence for a few steps. “You really haven’t gotten out much, have you?”

The gentleness got to me. Even though I was a fraud, Drew really cared. Not just as a boyfriend, but as a person. I couldn’t say anything, because I was sure whatever I tried to say would get stuck in my throat. I just shook my head.

“Don’t worry, Rick. Everything’s going to be okay.”

That hit me hard. Ultimately, everything wasn’t going to be okay, but I was enough of a coward to take what I could get and leave the future for another time. I smiled at him. “Thanks, Drew.”

We were approaching Drew’s home when he put his arm in front of me, making me stop. I was about to ask him why, when he put a finger to his lips. I cocked my head as I tried to work out what he was doing. His grin told me nothing.

I watched as he snuck up towards the house. After a repeated gesture to be quiet, he beckoned me forward. I joined him at the fence that separated his house from, I suddenly remembered, Sue’s. Sue and Joe had stayed behind when we left the shopping centre, and I had the impression that they wouldn’t be following for a while.

“Listen,” Drew whispered.

I didn’t know what I was listening for, but I eventually heard the sounds of murmuring, above the rustling of leaves in the breeze.

“Wait here.”

Not knowing what he had planned, I followed his barely audible instruction and watched as he stepped into the garden. As my eyes adjusted to the gloom, I saw him crouched over something.

A moment later, there was a scream from the other side of the garden.

Drew started laughing and I took that to mean there was no need to remain quiet. I stepped in and joined him in the shadows amongst the bushes. I then worked out what he had done.

“Is that hose connected to a sprinkler?”

He nodded, grinning broadly. “And it’s just by the outside seat. Come on. Let’s see who we caught.” He reached down and turned off the tap.

We leaped out of the garden and back to the footpath before walking around to the driveway. Drew was whistling nonchalantly, as if he had done nothing. He likely didn’t realise I wasn’t practised at appearing innocent. To play it safe, I followed him, rather than walking with him.


“Hi, sis! Hi, Scott. How’s things?”

Drew’s sister was wringing water from her hair, while Scott was shaking out a blanket. From the look of them, the blanket must have been up around their chests, because only the top of their clothes appeared wet.

Scott was a tall guy, and he looked like he could have tied Drew into a knot if he wanted. He must have been used to Drew, though, because he just rolled his eyes and then grinned. “G’day, Drew.”

Drew’s sister wasn’t as forgiving. “You miserable little piece of filthy compost. When I get through with you, you’ll wish you’d never been born!”

“Aren’t you being a bit mean, Penny? I haven’t done anything.”

She paused and narrowed her eyes. I didn’t like the way she looked past Drew and stared at me. “Who’s this?”

Drew turned to me and winked. “I’m sorry, Rick. Please excuse her. My sister has no manners.” I could see over his shoulder that his comments weren’t helping to defuse the situation. Before Penny could step forward and throttle someone, Scott put a hand on her arm.

“Leave it, Pen. It was only a little water.”

She turned on him. “You stay out of this. He’s my brother and I’ll kill him if I want to!”

Drew grabbed me by the hand and tried to yank me forward. I was surprised for a moment and didn’t move. “Come on, Rick, before she can catch us!”

With that prompt, we ran around the back of the house and up the stairs. I glanced back once and didn’t see Penny, so I assumed she wasn’t following.

Once we were inside, we moved quietly towards Drew’s room. “My parents are probably asleep,” he said.

I nodded, though he wouldn’t have noticed. I swallowed once as we entered his room, while wondering if I should be there. I didn’t know what he was going to want to do.

“Now where’s your jumper?” Drew mused.

I relaxed. “I left it on the end of your bed.”

“Which end?” he asked, before spotting it and picking it up. He turned and smiled. “I’d like you to stay for a bit, but I promised your parents I’d get you home at a reasonable time. Maybe next time.”

I returned the smile as I stripped off his top and put on my own. “Thanks, Drew.”

“My pleasure. Now let’s go.”

“How are we going to get past your sister?”

A look of discomfort crossed his face. “Oh, fuck. I didn’t think of that. I should’ve set the sprinkler off on the way out, not on the way in.” His forehead wrinkled and then he grinned. “We’ll jump the back fence into Sue’s place and duck out that way.”

“Isn’t that going to get us into trouble with her folks?”

“Nah. They’re used to me. At one point there was even talk about putting in a gate so I’d stop climbing the fence.”

I had the impression he was hiding something, but I didn’t push. “We should get going then, before your sister comes looking for us.”

“Don’t worry. Her bark’s worse than her bite. Anyway, Scott’s a good guy. He’ll keep her occupied for a while longer, I’m sure. But we’ll sneak out, just in case.”

Drew crept to the door and peered out. He then waved me forward before tiptoeing into the hallway.

We padded back to the kitchen and out through the back door. I kept expecting to be jumped by Penny or Scott, but there was no one there. The half moon gave us sufficient light to see our way across the back garden to a gum tree that was near the side fence. The railings of the fence were on the other side, so I watched as Drew used the gum tree to help him up and over.

“The coast is clear,” he whispered from the other side.

I found the hand and footholds that Drew had used and quickly joined him in the neighbours’ garden. I cringed when I noticed that I had landed in a garden bed, squashing a number of daffodils. I carefully lifted my feet and moved onto the grass. I could see that Drew had landed in the same bed, as there were more crushed flowers off to the side.

Drew beckoned me forward and the two of us headed across the backyard to the garage on the other side. We were halfway across when an outside light came on and illuminated us.

We both froze and stared at the house. I was expecting to be yelled at, but there was no one there.

Drew grabbed me by the hand and half dragged me into the shadows at the side of the property. “Must be a sensor light they’ve installed,” he whispered.

“When was the last time you did this?” I whispered back while wondering why he seemed surprised.

“About five years ago.”

Drew’s nonchalant answer annoyed me. He could have gotten us into hot water, since we were technically trespassing. I waited until we had snuck down the driveway and out onto the footpath before saying anything.

“Are you trying to get us both in trouble? What if they’d thought we were burglars? They could’ve called the police!” I couldn’t keep the anger out of my voice. The fear had momentarily overridden my desire to stay on Drew’s good side.

I was pleased to see the contrite look on Drew’s face. “Sorry, I didn’t think of that. I won’t do it again, I promise.” He reached out and put a hand on my arm as an apology. “Please don’t be mad at me.”

Drew needed me, maybe as much as I needed him. I just wished we could keep it at simply a good-friend level.

After taking a few deep breaths to calm down, I gave Drew a faint smile. “I don’t think you’ll be able to keep that promise, so I won’t hold you to it. But I’d appreciate a bit of warning next time. I don’t like being dragged into something without notice.”

Drew’s grin showed his relief. “Thanks, mate. I’ll do that. You are the absolutely best boyfriend a guy could ever want.”

I looked down the street, wishing he had left “boy” off of the word.

“You okay?” he asked, probably concerned because I had turned away.

“Yeah. Just give me a sec.” I could tell my voice sounded flustered, but I hoped he wouldn’t take it the wrong way.

We strolled along until we got to the park, not speaking. I wondered how safe the park was in the dark, but Drew turned onto the path without hesitation. Since it was so close to his home, I accepted his judgement and followed. He paused to let me catch up, and then we walked along side by side, Drew on the right and me on the left.

The park was darker than the street, with only the soft moonlight and distant streetlights providing illumination. It was restful, though, rather than frightening, with the normal suburban noises being masked by the gentle rustling of leaves in the breeze. It was as if we were detached from life outside and didn’t have to worry about the issues that bombarded us every day.

I was startled when Drew slipped his hand into my mine, but I didn’t say anything. It felt odd to stroll along, holding hands with a guy, but I believed I understood why Drew did it. I thought he needed the reassurance that I was with him. Not physically, but as his partner.

Partner. That word appealed to me. I thought about it for a few strides and decided I could accept that more than boyfriend. I was about to ask Drew if he would mind using it instead of the B word, when he pulled me off the path and towards the shadows at the side.

“What is it?” I asked quietly, not wanting to disturb the ambience by speaking too loudly.

He put a finger to his lips to indicate he wanted me to be quiet. I had a bad feeling, thinking he was going to pull another stunt, so soon after promising he wouldn’t do that.

He took me into the darkness by some bushes and then turned to face me. Without letting go of my left hand, he took hold of my right.

“Rick, I know we’re going to have to be careful, since you’re not out, and we have to be especially careful in front of your parents, so I want to say now how much I’ve enjoyed tonight, and how much I like having you here with me.”

He took a deep breath, let go of my hands, and then slipped his arms behind my back as he moved forward until our bodies were touching. I froze, fearing what he was going to do.

“We can’t say goodnight properly at your place, so I’d like to do it now. Thanks for a great time, Rick.”

My fears were realised when his face slowly approached mine. He was about to kiss me.

Worse than that, I was going to have to kiss him back.

Copyright Notice — Copyright © October 2008 by Graeme.

The author copyrights this story and retains all rights. This work may not be duplicated in any form — physical, electronic, audio, or otherwise — without the author's expressed permission. All applicable copyright laws apply.

Disclaimer: All individuals depicted are fictional, and any resemblance to real persons is purely coincidental.

A special thank you to Ray and Kel, and also to everyone at The Mail Crew. The help they have given me with this story has been fantastic. Special kudos go to Aaron and Rain of The Mail Crew for doing a brilliant job of editing. I can thoroughly recommend their website to all teenagers who are gay, lesbian, bi or not sure.