CHAPTER 5 - The Bus Ride
By the time we cleaned the fish, loaded our gear into the jeep, and cleaned up the boat, I was dead tired. I thanked Daniel's Uncle James and Aunt Dorothy in a daze and then we climbed into the jeep. I yawned so widely, my eyes watered. It occurred to me that Daniel might also be tired. “You OK to drive?” I asked as Daniel backed onto the road.
“Yeah, I'm fine,” Daniel answered, stifling a yawn of his own.
“Do I need to do anything to help you stay awake,” I asked with a broad grin.
“Oh, hell no! You've worn me out… well that way, at least. But I'm OK,” Daniel smiled. “Go ahead and rest.”
“I will,” I agreed as we drove away from the beach house. “But first I have a question about your cousin Austin and the look he gave me.”
Daniel turned red, but didn't say anything. He looked at a loss for words.
“Let me guess,” I said. “Somehow Austin knows that you and I might be sharing more than a humble friendship?”
Daniel nodded, staring straight ahead.
“And the only way I can think that you would tell Austin about us, is if you and he have messed around before, right?”
Daniel looked at me with mild surprise. “Maybe you ought to write detective stories.”
“So tell me about it.” I demanded.
Daniel shrugged. “You know how I've stayed with them at their beach house a few times? Well, at the beginning of the summer, Austin and I had to share a bed. And, well… I woke up with morning wood the first day and with Austin sleeping all over me. He was hard too, and well, one thing led to another and we jerked each other off.”
“Well, that morning that was all,” said Daniel, flushing again.
Another shrug. “We've sucked each other off a couple of times, and well, he wanted to try cornholing and we did that… a few times, but mostly we've just jerked each other off.”
“You must have done a hell of a lot of talking while you jerked off. How did he know about us?”
“Well,” he said, keeping his eyes on the road, “last week, we talked about girl friends, and one night we even talked about boys we thought were good looking. He brought up your name first. You made quite an impression on him in the scouts. Said you helped him a lot and treated him well for a tenderfoot. He likes you. Anyway, I told him I liked you a lot too.”
He negotiated through some traffic, then continued, “Last Tuesday night, when I stopped by my Uncle James' house to make sure we could still use the boat this weekend, Austin followed me out to the car. He stayed right on my heels, asking what all we were going to do. When I got into the jeep, he leaned in and asked, `So, are you and Sean messing around together?'”
“Austin didn't even give me a chance to answer,” Daniel complained. “I guess my face gave it away. Before I could say anything, he just said, `cool' and walked away.”
I thought it over. “Do you think he'll say anything to anybody?”
“Austin? Naw. He's cool.”
That relaxed me enough to yawn again. “I think I will take a nap,” I declared as I put my duffel between the seats. I explored whether it was possible to avoid impaling myself on the gearshift while lying down on my duffel and putting my head in Daniel's lap. It was, and I did. I found the softest place to lay my head was on his well-cushioned package.
Daniel combed his fingers through my hair. I “ummmed,” satisfied, and fell asleep. Part way home, I woke at a stop. I had grown stiff in that position and tried turning on my other side. That put my face into Daniel's stomach. I nuzzled him as his hand returned to my hair, and I fell asleep again.
WEEK 2 OF SCHOOL
That first week after we got back was busy, with school, football practices, long conversations on the phone with Daniel, homework, and too little sleep. Rachael called me Monday night and again on Wednesday, and continued being extremely friendly at school. She couldn't have made it any clearer that she wanted to go together. A month before, I would have been interested. But it was hard to be interested now.
I was surprised to find Daniel's cousin, Austin at the house when I came home from football practice on Tuesday, and then again on Thursday. Ostensibly, he was visiting my brother, Colin, and his constant companion, Tommy. Each time though, as soon as I walked in the door I picked up an instant shadow.
Austin really was a cute guy. But he looked and acted so damned young, and so damned obvious! I was embarrassed, even if I was flattered by his friendliness.
Colin lost no time in teasing me about my “fan club.” After Austin left the second time, Colin poked me in the ribs. “Austin told me he was jealous of me because he always wished he had a big brother. I think you're nominated.” He poked my ribs a second time, and jumped back as I punched at his side. “It's that interception you made, and all those tackles last week,” he protested. “You're a star, Sean. Hey,” he said thoughtfully, “maybe I could sell your autographs.”
I stepped toward him and he dodged away.
What was really funny was that at my house Austin picked up a shadow of his own, my little sister, Laurie. She was only nine, but evidently sweet on Austin. She followed him following me. We had our own little parade. But that was only a minor diversion. There were a lot of things going on.
As the week started, Stefan seemed almost embarrassed around me. He never asked how the fishing trip went, or even talked much about our game. When I threw an arm over his shoulder, he pulled away. So, even when Daniel was around, I tried palling around with Stef some between classes. It took most of the week before Stef began to loosen up.
Aaron tried to get me to his house, or to meet him in the johns. He was horny, even though he claimed he had banged Barbara over the weekend. I don't know, maybe he did; Aaron was always horny.
On Thursday night, my family and I went to watch Colin's team play. Daniel joined us even though Colin was about the only kid he knew who was playing. Colin started at quarterback and was an absolute standout. Unfortunately his team lost the game.
My family went on home, but Daniel and I hung around outside the locker room afterward to take Colin out for a malt. I wanted to cheer him up and honestly congratulate him for an excellent game. He needed it. He came dragging out of the field house looking really dejected.
At the DQ, I was specific and enthusiastic in my praise for his play. I ran through several of his plays, critiquing each. I was sure to let him know that I spotted a couple of shaky hand offs, and a lousy pass, so that he believed my excitement for his outstanding run on a quarterback sneak that almost broke for a touchdown, for several great passes he threw, and for overall great play calling-even if his backs couldn't run. Daniel helped me, adding his own compliments and encouragements. By the time we were done, Colin felt better.
Daniel drove us home, dropping us off in the drive. As we walked up to the door, I gave Colin's shoulder a squeeze. “You really did well, Colin. You played an excellent game.”
He clapped my shoulder, too, and smiled up at me gratefully. “Thanks,” he said. “I feel a hell of a lot better.” He reached for the door, and then paused. “And Daniel's cool, too. I'm glad you guys are becoming friends.”
Friday night was our second and final pre-season game. It was an away game, out of district, and almost a two-hour drive. The school we were playing was an old rival from a time when there had been fewer schools in South Texas.
I played for the entire second half, again. It was like I hit my groove. I played so well, I surprised even myself.
Besides getting another interception, I made a several solo tackles, include one touchdown-saver. Coach congratulated me in front of everyone as we were showering up, and loudly told me I would be starting the next game. That earned me several back and butt slaps.
I was high on adrenalin when Aaron came looking for me. Everyone was preparing to load out, and Aaron dragged me outside ahead of them. He led me onto the bus and then to the back where some of team gear was stored. Aaron cleared a space on one side of the seat that ran across the back of the bus, moving the equipment that was there to the seats directly in front. I instantly realized what he was up to. His rearranging cleared a spot for us in the far back corner. In the process, he made sure the seats immediately in front of us, on both sides, were fully taken up with equipment.
Aaron made it as private as he could. Younger guys normally sat in the back anyway, so I didn't think it would look that funny. I had been hoping, however, to sit up front and bask in the replay talk that was bound to go on as we headed back. Because of the way I felt about Daniel now, I hadn't been thinking about doing anything with anybody else.
But standing next to Aaron in the dark, back corner of the bus, my feelings grew mixed. I mean, after all that sex the weekend before, and then nothing all week but a couple of jack-offs at home, I was horny and Aaron was a harmless way to take care of it. Besides, Aaron's horniness was always catching. After declining his invitations all week, I didn't want Aaron to feel rebuffed. At least, that's what I told myself.
Besides, Daniel had only said he didn't want me messing around with Stefan. He never said anything about Aaron. Certainly, he wouldn't care if Aaron and I had a quickie sixty-nine in the back of the bus on the way home. It was always just sex with Aaron, right? So I climbed in by the window and Aaron sat next to me.
As the rest of the guys started climbing on board, Aaron surprised me by waving Stefan back to join us. We slid over which pushed me against the side and scrunched Aaron in the middle. Aaron seemed happy enough. Good, I thought. If anything happens, Stefan's on the other side of Aaron, so it won't be like messing with Stef.
We talked about the game, but as soon as we were on the highway and it was dark back in our seat, I felt Aaron's hand slide up and down my thigh. It was hard to tell, but it looked like he was doing the same to Stefan's leg. In the seats farther up, some of the guys were talking, while others were falling asleep. No one looked back at us. I put my hand on Aaron's thigh. The back of my hand brushed the back of Stefan's hand, doing the same thing on Aaron's other leg. There was electricity in the contact.
Aaron undid his pants and pushed them and his underwear down to his knees. His big cock sprang up, a darker shape in the dark. I saw Stefan's hand move to take hold of it. Again, I looked around nervously. Things were quieting down up front. Everybody was facing forward. I undid my pants and lowered them. Aaron's firm grip was instantly on my hard cock. He stroked me as I rubbed his inner thigh and Stefan stroked his cock. This was even better than a sixty-nine. I figured Daniel would have to think that mutual JO was harmless enough.
But then Stef moved to the floor. He knelt in front of Aaron and took Aaron's cock into his mouth. Stefan lowered his pants, but kneeling on the floor his position was cramped. He pushed Aaron away from me on the seat and moved up between us, sliding his ass up almost into my lap while keeping his head in Aaron's lap. His naked ass pushed back against the bare side of my leg. It was too tempting to not rub my hand over his butt.
Stefan had a fine butt, made finer by football workouts. I let my finger slip into his crack.
“Do it,” Stef lifted off Aaron's cock to encourage.
It'd be awkward in the space we had, but I rolled my hips to spoon Stef and my cock pressed against his butt. I bent over him, lowering my mouth close to where Stef was sucking Aaron. “I don't have any lube,” I said.
“Use spit,” Stef quickly whispered, before returning to work on Aaron.
I wasn't sure my spit was viscous enough, but I was so damned horny. I spit into my hand and rubbed it into Stef's butt. I spit some more and rubbed it over my cock. Then keeping my head low behind the seat, I pressed the head of my cock into Stef's crack and found his opening with my cockhead. Holding my shaft, I pushed forward with my hips, and my crown popped inside Stef. He tensed while I carefully pressed forward until my balls lay against his butt. Then I laid my chest on his side, and reached between his legs to take care of him too.
Stef worked on Aaron, while I ground into Stef's back end. Holding Stef cupped in my body like that seemed different than it had before. It was hard to still think of it as just messing around; just getting our rocks off. He loved me, and we'd been buddies a long time. I was tempted to kiss him.
Closing my eyes, I concentrated on the feelings - Stef's smaller, hard body under me; his tightness on my cock as I moved in and out in long strokes; the breeze blowing over my bare hips, my face, and through my hair; the rocking of the bus, and the vibrations from the road coming up through the floor; the gentle bouncing that swung my balls back and forth on the soft skin of Stef's butt, and rubbed the front of my thighs against the back of his.
And then Aaron was crawling over us, bare ass above the back of the seat in front, wet cock dragging across my back. Stef and I both cursed under our breath as Aaron made too much noise. He pushed Stef and me forward on the seat and wedged his hips down behind my butt.
“I don't have lube,” I hissed back at him.
Aaron pushed my butt forward, almost shoving Stef's head past the end of the seat in front of us. Then Aaron did the saliva thing, rubbing spit into my butt. I reached back to add spit of my own, not trusting him to do a good job of it.
Aaron was horny and not in his gentlest mood. He found my hole and his cock felt huge when he pushed in.
Afterwards, Stef fell asleep, lying back against me. I rested my cheek on the top of his head and stared out the window. We entered a stretch of concrete highway, and the steady clack, clack of the tires on road gaskets came through the open windows, making me drowsy. However, instead of the warm afterglow of sex, I had pangs of guilt. So much for mutual JO, I thought. How would I ever explain this to Daniel? Maybe, I thought, I better not tell him at all.
The next morning, Saturday morning, Daniel and I took our first bike ride. He showed up wearing black lycra bicycling shorts and a bright yellow bike jersey. His cleated bike shoes had the effect of working his butt and legs as he walked, like high heels do to women. His cock was out to the side, outlined explicitly by the lycra. Damn he looked good, front and back.
His bike was sleek, clean, and light. I had borrowed my dad's old three speed and wore cut-offs and a tank top.
The morning air had that first bit of coolness that signals Fall. But it was still South Texas and humid.
I had to work to keep up with him. Daniel assured me that a proper bike would make that easier. In the meantime, he led the way most of the time, letting me draft. I enjoyed riding behind him. I liked watching the muscles in Daniel's butt, back, and legs.
Unfortunately, my muscles were working too and the briefs I wore under the cutoffs began chafing. On top of that, my butt was still sore from Aaron's pounding the night before.
Remembering that, bummed me. It didn't sit right with me not telling Daniel about the bus ride. I didn't like keeping secrets from him.
I wanted to confess; tell Daniel what I'd done with Stefan and Aaron and explain that I was sorry. But I was afraid he'd be mad, or worse. I felt like a major slut.
Stef had been my best bud forever. It was great, him sleeping against me on the bus. But I'd trade a hundred Stefans and Aarons for Daniel. Daniel was bright, and fantastic looking, and fun. But it went far beyond relative qualities; beyond in a way I couldn't exactly explain. Daniel was different than anyone I'd ever known. His smile could give me butterflies. His body stirred me. When we were together, I felt like I was special, more like who I was supposed to be than I ever was on my own.
I wanted him to belong to me, which probably meant he wanted me to belong to him. Somehow, that put messing around with other guys in a new light.
Daniel was happy and animated this morning. He wanted to talk and it was obvious he was happy to be with me. The nicer he was to me, the more the bus ride prodded my conscience.
Daniel and I had ridden miles out of town when I pulled up alongside him. “My bottom is beginning to get sore from this bike seat. Is there some place around here we can stop?”
Daniel smiled at me and directed us up onto a levee. “We're almost to a place I had in mind,” he said. “We can stop and I can kiss your sore butt and make it all well.” He flashed me a grin.
That “kissing” idea actually sounded pretty good to my butt. I was beginning to ride standing up off the saddle. After a quarter mile the levee entered a wooded area. We got off our bikes and walked them down the embankment and into the woods. There was a clearing a short way in. “I found this one time,” Daniel said, “when I stopped for a stretch and a piss. I felt like exploring and...” he trailed off, sweeping his hands around the clearing.
We laid the bikes down and Daniel stepped up to me. Taking me in his arms, he rubbed his crotch to mine, and smiled happily at me, before pressing his mouth to mine. It was uncomfortable. I felt unclean, unworthy. Somehow, I felt that I had betrayed him.
We were both damp with sweat and getting wetter. At least when we were cycling, the wind kept us cooler and drier.
But the sweat was morning sweat, and Daniel's smell was good. He slid his hands down to my butt. It was familiar, the move of a lover. He grabbed me by the cheeks and tugged me to him with a hungry growl. He pulled hard, and the affect was also to pull my cheeks apart and stretch the sore skin. It felt good and I sighed, yielding to his kiss. He felt so damn good against me. I pushed away all memories of the night before. I wouldn't remember.
Daniel's hands kneaded and worked my butt. “Oh, I gasped. “You have no idea how good that feels.”
“It's gonna feel better,” he whispered.
As our lips met again, he undid my pants and slid them off my hips. The cutoffs fell to the ground. His hands slid under the back of my briefs and massaged my ass more directly. His hands felt soothing and sexy all at once. And I could feel his crotch better, rubbing against mine. Only my briefs and his thin lycra remained between us.
He felt strong in my arms. I pulled up his jersey, and could feel his skin stretched tight over back muscles as hard as steel, harder than they'd been before. And I thought that bicycling must work back muscles.
I pulled his jersey off, and then my own tank top. Daniel kept rubbing my butt; firmly, soothingly. But as comforting as that was, his cock ground insistently against mine. I pressed my bare belly to his, and my chest to his chest. I ran my hands admiringly over his strong back, damp with sweat, and opened my mouth to his.
I wanted my naked cock on his and grasped the waistband of his shorts, peeling them down. Squatting, I left the loving feel of his hands on my butt long enough to pull his shorts off over his shoes. He was naked now, except for the shoes; and I joined him, taking my briefs off. As I stood back up, I looked doubtfully at the dry grass and sticker burrs. “How are we going to do this?” I asked.
Daniel smiled and turned his back to me. Backing up, he ground his butt into my cock. “You remember how I told you that I thought of a hundred ways we could make love?” he asked.
“Uh huh,” I said leaning forward to kiss the back of his neck. I slid my cock up and down his crack. “Standing up, like we did at the beach?”
“Yeah,” Daniel answered. “Let's do it.” He stepped away to reach into his bike bag and pulled out a tube of lube.
He stepped back to me, butt first. “No,” I said. “I'm the one with a sore ass. You promised to kiss it and make it all better, remember?” I know it sounded crazy after the fucking I took the night before, but my butt was really sore and the thought of Daniel filling me, and his body pressing against my soreness struck me as likely to be real soothing.
Daniel smiled as I turned around. There was a big hackberry tree close by. I stepped up to it. Leaning forward, I placed my hands on the trunk and spread my feet, pushing my butt out behind me.
“Damn,” Daniel said, as I felt him rest one hand on a butt cheek while his other dropped the lube to the ground and reached under me to cup my balls. “You should see what I'm seeing. You have one hell of a fine butt, Sean. With it all spread out and pointed back at me like this; why even where you're red from the bike saddle, you look...hot.”
He stepped closer. I felt his cock, thick and warm, settle into the length of my crack. It tugged and pressed as he slid it up and down, and rubbed my sore places. “Oh, damn, that feels soooo good,” I said.
“Wait,” Daniel said as he dropped to a knee behind me. “I haven't kissed it yet.”
True to his word, I felt his mouth and tongue kiss and lick where he saw that I was sore. His fingers tenderly massaged my balls and cock. It was soothing and stimulating at the same time. When I felt his tongue press forcefully and wet, up behind my balls, my legs went weak. I moaned and hoped that up close, my butt hole didn't look too raw from the night before.
I spread my feet farther and Daniel licked between my legs, my perineum. Then I felt something cool slide up my crack. It was the KY, on his fingers. He was gentle, working it into my crack, over my soreness. Then he was at my hole, and I felt his finger push in and search for my prostate. I went up on my toes and whimpered.
Around us, locusts raised their high-pitched din. A faint breeze cooled my chest. But all my attention came back to the finger inside me, searching for places that gave me pleasure. I leaned my head on my arms and whimpered.
His finger pulled out and moments later, his hands gripped my hipbones as he moved the head of his cock forward. “Pull your feet together a little,” he instructed. I did. It raised my butt hole to just the right height. He didn't hesitate; he pushed in.
He worked in slowly, and the angle was good. He stretched my soreness and I sighed gratefully. I left one hand on the tree and with the other, stroked myself. I liked this position.
Daniel made it all the way in, pulling me hard by the hips, pushing in as deeply as he could. I pushed back against him. “Oh, fuck, you feel great,” he said, throatily.
“You too, Dan. Oh, damn. You too.”
While I held the tree with one hand and my cock with the other, Daniel moved in and out of me and explored my body with his hands. “I love your body,” he mumbled, appreciatively.
“Oh, man, just keep moving,” I encouraged. “It feels so good.”
Daniel's speed quickened and he gave up his exploration of my body, settling his hands back on my hips, where he pulled me back each time he thrust forward. His strokes were long, pounding. His thrusting stimulated the hell out of my ass. I quit stroking, and still, my orgasm began to build. His cock was squeezing it out of me, thrust by thrust.
“I can't take it much longer,” I warned. “I'm going to cum.”
“Do it!” he said. “I'm there too.” He pumped faster.
I grabbed my cock in and a flurry of strokes, brought on my own orgasm. My semen splattered against the tree, and as I was finishing, I felt Daniel shoot hard inside me.
We slowed. Sweat dripped from our bodies. He stayed in me while his hands rubbed my butt and back. Then he bent forward and I felt him kiss my neck. His arms came around me. I put both hands on the tree and pushed my butt back, comforting my soreness on him.
“You OK?” he asked.
“Yeah. Still feels good.”
So Daniel rubbed me and kissed my back until he slid out, and we stood upright. Daniel slid his hands up my belly and pressed himself to my butt. He nuzzled behind my ear and his breath flowed over my neck. “I've been waiting all week for this.”
“Yeah, it was a damn long week,” I commented, feeling like a heel and a liar because of the night before. “But I may need another week before my butt can take another ride. By the time we get back, I won't be able to sit for long.”
“What? Didn't this help?”
“Sure,” I answered, rubbing back against him. “You need to write this up for bicyclists everywhere; a sure cure for sore bike butt.”
Daniel laughed and hugged me. “It's called `saddle soreness,' and it's worse with a good hard bike seat like I have.” There's a new kind of seat coming out you can check out; gel seats. They're softer, but you still get power to the pedals.”
He rocked me as he held me. “You need shorts like mine,” he said. “They have pads in them. And we need to toughen up your butt.”
“I don't think I'd look as good in those shorts as you do,” I told him. “You're going to get raped in those things.”
Daniel kissed the middle of my back, right between my shoulder blades. Then he swatted my butt and stepped back. “Let me see you in them,” Daniel insisted. “Go ahead and try them on”
I thought about it. I was a little taller than Daniel, and a little meatier, but lycra stretches. “Have anything I can clean with first?” I asked.
“Yeah, I do. I always carry a couple of paper towels in case I have to take a dump or something.” He retrieved them from his bike bag.
I wiped myself clean and handed the used towels to Daniel, “You can have them back now.”
He laughed, sniffed at them, and said, “I might just keep them.” He rolled them into a ball and stuffed them into his bike bag.
“You are kidding,” I said as I stepped into his shorts.
The thought came unheeded that Daniel had just been wearing these same shorts; that his cock was where mine was now and his balls were where mine were now. The feel of the material began to give me another erection. My cock thickened up across my belly. The lycra showed it off clearly.
“Yep,” Daniel said, eyeing it, “you definitely look better in those than I do.” He walked around me, looking at me from all sides. Then he stepped up to me, and put his arms around me. He smiled and kissed my cheek. “When we get back, I want you to keep these. I'll get another pair.”
I wrapped my arms over his shoulders. “Thanks!” I said sincerely, but then couldn't resist asking, “Do I have to stay hard all the time.”
“Absolutely, or you have to strip them off on the spot and hand them back over.”
I hugged him, laughing. “If we just stay like this, I won't ever have to give them back.”
“If we stay like this,” he said, “I'm going to want them off again anyway.”
He started to back away, but I held onto him and pressed my lycra-covered thickness to him. “Think we can both fit in here?” I asked.
“If you hug me hard enough.”
I hugged him hard and he hugged me back. He kissed my neck and ran his fingers into my sweat-drenched hair. It was getting hot… literally.
“I need water,” I said.
“We could kiss,” Daniel said, grinning. “But I don't have much spit left.”
We stopped at a convenience store on the way back and sat on a bench out front to drink a cold soda. We didn't say much, but that was cool, too. It was cool just to be with him. And that was the neat thing about cycling with Daniel; we could talk, or not talk. Usually, we talked a lot. That day, we talked about bikes. I had some savings, and as I had mentioned, I actually had been looking at bikes. Dan promised to help me shop.
On the way home, we planned out how to get me outfitted. Since our campus was an open one, Daniel thought we could get some bicycle shopping accomplished during lunches the coming week.
By the time we arrived back at my house, my butt felt like hamburger. I really would have liked Daniel to stay and care for my ass some more, but that would definitely have my parents wondering. Instead, after I soaked in a hot tub for a while, I decided to beg Colin to apply some ointment for me.
He was lying on his bed in our room. I came from the john in just my towel and made my request.
“Get mom to do it,” he told me without looking up from a book he was reading.
“You've got to be kidding,” I said.
“Dad may be around. Get him to do it.”
“You've got to be kidding,” I repeated.
“Oh all right,” he said with dramatic resignation as he closed his book and sat up. I went to my bed, dropped the towel and lay down on my belly, spreading my legs to give him access.
Colin walked to the foot of my bed, surveying my damaged bottom. “Well I don't have to ask where you need the ointment, but do you really expect me to touch you there?”
I groaned, “Please, Colin. I am so sore. You're my brother. I'd do it for you.”
“No kidding. My heart would go out to my poor little brother in need. I wouldn't be able to bear seeing you suffer,” I said sweetly.
“Austin wants an older brother. Maybe I ought to go call him to come over,” Colin suggested.
“Please, just fuckin' rub my butt!” I hissed, exasperated.
“You're going to really owe me for this,” Colin said, dipping his hand into the ointment jar.
Even though he's my brother and even though he complained mightily about having to “grease” my ass, he did a good job. By the time he was done, my butt felt much better; I was also rock hard so I stayed on my belly. I told him I was letting it “sink in.” As Colin walked by to go wash off his hands, his bulge looked bulgier than normal. Funny, it pleased me that my butt might even have an effect on my own brother.
Later that afternoon, I called Aaron, acting like I just wanted to talk about the game. He of course wanted to talk about the bus ride. That was the real reason I called. I knew Aaron and his big mouth. Casually, I asked him not to say anything to anybody, especially Daniel.
“Why,” he laughed. “Do you think he'd be jealous or something? He can come over and we'll all do it again.”
“Not jealous the way you're thinking, Aaron. But he and Stefan are sorta jealous of each other, you know, about being my best friend. We're working through all that and it would really mess things up if you said anything.”
With laughs and guffaws, Aaron finally agreed to keep quiet.
Next, I called Stefan. Again I pretended to want to talk about the game. Stef didn't even mention the bus ride. I had to bring it up. But before I could ask him to keep quiet about it, Stefan suggested, “I don't think you ought to say anything to Daniel about what happened on the bus, Sean. He might not appreciate it. And you ought to warn Aaron to keep his big mouth shut.”
Relief flooded over me. And gratitude. Stef still was a good friend, and I said so.
“I'm not stupid, Sean,” he said. “If I messed things up between you and Daniel, you'd be royally pissed. It's better for you to know that you and me… we can mess around anytime you want and I won't ever say anything to anybody.”
I swallowed hard. That's not what I was expecting and not at all what I wanted.
“Anytime you want, Sean,” Stefan repeated.
“Uh, thanks, Stef,” was all I managed to stammer out.