Matt and Tim

by Small Town Guy

Chapter 6

Matt and Tim made their way along the nature trails in the park. The day had grown warmer although it became more overcast and a bit darker. There wasn't the slightest breeze. Both boys looked up through the trees and thought the same, "The calm before the storm."

A chipmunk darted across the trail only feet from them.

"Baaahhhh!" Tim yelled as he jumped.

"Don't tell me you're afraid of chipmunks!"

"No!......It's not that. I just heard the leaves rustling and saw this streak shoot by!"

"The squirrels 'n' chipmunks around here are really tame. People feed 'em! They'll eat right out of your hand! I usually bring peanuts out here in the summer. They just love peanuts!"

Tim walked to Matt's right. The back of his left hand seemed to tap against Matt's right. Matt grasped his hand and interlaced his fingers. He glanced down afraid to look at him.

"...Matty......you're blushing!"

"Am not!"

"Yes you are!......Awhh! You just look so cute like that!"

They continued on for a moment in silence. The stream they followed emptied into the large pond. Nearby was a small pavilion. It was simply a roof over a wood floor. Park benches were inside, along a three foot wall made of rustic logs.

"Awh! Cool!" Tim said, looking at it.

"Well, this is another place that just isn't too cool with the high school kids. Mostly college kids come out here. At night, it's kind of a lover's lane."

Tim looked at his bowed head.

"...Matty......You're blushing again!"

They entered the small building and sat on a bench. The entire park seemed deserted. The approaching storm seemed to have put people off. They sat close to each other, yet didn't look at each other. They both brushed their jeans and picked at pine needles on their shirts. Matt slid up tight to Tim. He placed his arm over his shoulders, drawing him close. Tim pressed his palms together between his knees.

"Now I think you're blushing!"

"...Umm....yeah Matty......I....I got so much to say here, but..."

He held out his arms, his palms up in a silent appeal.

"...I just....I just can't get the words to come out!"

"...Look, Tim......We're both kinda shy here. Umm....things feel a little awkward, kay? We're a little embarrassed an' stuff. Let's just take this one day at a time....Hell! One hour at a time! We don't have to talk about everything all at once. Let's just kick back and let time take care of itself. Let's not worry about anything! I think the worst is behind. We're like....OUT to each other now......And well, for me......That's all I need right now, kay?"

He took his hand from Tim's shoulder and pressed it to the side of his face, drawing his head closer. His lips touched his cheek softly, lingering for just several seconds. Tim reached up and touched the spot with his fingertips.

"...Wow!....Gee Matty.....That was kinda....umm...sweet!"

Matt suddenly got to his feet.

"Tim......Last night I thought you were asleep. I kinda kissed your cheek. You said the same thing! We're you awake?!"

Tim's face seemed to lose a bit of color. He quickly got to his feet as well. He seemed to be glancing around.

"...No! I was sleepin'......And dreaming!......I was dreaming about you 'n' me! We were in this deep forest on a park bench way out there! And you kissed my cheek!......And....and I told you it was sweet!.......Whoaaaa! Weird!.......Like major creepy here!"

Matt felt a sudden eerie chill himself. He sat back down, rubbing his arms.

"Whoa! Einstein said, 'God doesn't play dice with the universe.' I always thought about stuff like that. Chance?....Fate?....Destiny?......Whoa!......I'm feelin' the super heebie-jeebies here!"

Tim slowly joined him, sitting beside him. They saw no lightning but heard a distant rumble of thunder. Both rubbed their bare arms as though warding off a supernatural chill.

"...Umm..." Tim began, "Are you like....ummm....A member of the GSA?"

"What made you think of that?......Why are you asking me that?..."

"Well, you seemed like you were really trying to get me in there! I didn't know what to expect, you know?..."

"I'd never been in there before! I wanted to see what it was like. What it was about! I asked you along for kinda like support. I was shy and scared. I really didn't wanna go in there alone. But I just suddenly got my nerve up and just did it!"

"Oh shit!......I was just soooo scared to go in there! I didn't know if you knew all those people. I didn't know if I was bein' set up or what!"

"SET UP?"

"Well yeah......Like....umm....you had it all planned with the members in there. I thought you were gonna come out to me in there!....er something..."

"COME OUT to you?!........In a ROOM FULL OF PEOPLE! Are you crazy?! That's something you do in private!......I'd never put you in the spotlight like that!....or ME either, for that matter..."

"Oh......Well, I just didn't know what to think."

"Well, I'll be honest with you here......I went in there to see if gay people had little signals or stuff. You gave me all these mixed signals........I wanted to see your reaction to things. I wanted to see the expressions on your face. I wanted to see if you'd smile or blush.......or if you'd get that disgusted look."

They sat in silence for a moment before Matt continued.

"Yeah, Tim......I was shy to come out to you......But I was a hundred times more scared! If you were straight....things would change! Things would be different between us. I at least had those little cuddling sessions with you. It wasn't the best, but it was sure better than nothing!"

Tim seemed in deep thought. He pushed a tiny pine cone around on the floor with the toe of his shoe. He continued to sigh as he thought.

"...I'm so sorry Matty......I was just so shy and scared. And I would have taken years to do what you did. I didn't mean all the mixed signals. Yeah, I can see now what I was doing to you. I'm so sorry. Yeah, those times I bumped my lips against your cheek. How I enjoyed that at the time......But later, I'd feel just soooo guilty about it! You were just so sweet 'n' cute I couldn't resist it.

"...All those times I dreamed of kissing you. In fact, well it might sound strange, but I almost think that just kissing you......would have been better........well, easier than telling you!"

They sat in silence for a moment. A nearby flash of lightning actually cast momentary shadows of the trees across the floor. The rumble of thunder was clearly louder.

Tim stood and tossed his arms out.

"No more mixed signals Matty. I promise. No more games. No more second guessing. No more question marks. No more confusing gestures..."

As he turned around, Matt saw his serious, piercing eyes. He stepped up to him and slowly sat on his thighs. He placed his hands on his shoulders. His face drew near.

"...And most of all, Matty......NO MORE......bumped......lips..."

He pressed his open mouth to Matt's, as his arms went around his neck. Matt's arms quickly rose and circled his chest.

"Mumph!....Mmmm!" Matt couldn't resist the muffled sighs that involuntarily gasped from his lungs. He tried to pull him closer. Knowing the bench was against Tim's thighs, he slid forward. He pulled against Tim's bottom, wanting him closer. Still it wasn't enough. He slowly stood, one hand still on Tim's bottom, his other arm around his waist. Still he couldn't pull him close enough. He raised his foot, trying to wrap his leg around him. In his sudden dizzy state, he couldn't stand on one leg. He knew this wouldn't work. He rubbed and hugged, trying to get closer. Nothing seemed to work. The pressure of Tim's kiss was forcing his head back.

"Oh my God!......I think I'm gonna just drop here!....I can't hold on! I can't breathe!.... I can't stand! I'm gonna fall over! I was afraid to kiss him this hard before! I thought I'd hurt his mouth! I gotta stop!....But I just can't! I want more of this!"

Soon, Tim broke his kiss. They stood with their chins over each others shoulders.

"...Holy, fuckin' shit, Timmy (puff,puff) I feel like I just ran a mile in ten seconds! It's sure (puff,puff) good you're inexperienced at this, because I'd be dead now!"

Tim chuckled as he nuzzled his neck.

"Yup, Matty......No more signals!"

There was a brilliant blue-white flash overhead. It seemed to reflect even from the dark bark of tree trunks nearby. There was an ear-shattering, crackling boom, which seemed to be felt through their feet.

"Wow!" Tim yelled, "We'd better head for our bikes and head for home."

"I think we're already too late!" Matt yelled, looking around.

They trotted up the path to the sound of raindrops already pelting the leaves overhead. Jumping on their bikes they began to pedal furiously. The wind came up in a sudden gust. Dry debris, twigs and dust began to swirl in the air. Sand stung their faces as they squinted into the wind. The raindrops became larger and more frequent as they reached Tim's house. Both aimed for the driveway. One overhead door on the garage was up. They shot inside, skidding to a stop!

"Whoa!......That's the closest I ever came to getting a wet ass!"

"Yeah! Me too!"

They jumped at the next clap of thunder and gazed out the doorway. A torrent of rain suddenly let loose. Wind drove the heavy rain nearly sideways. Lightning forked through the sky overhead. Thunder crackled and boomed. The entire garage and concrete floor shuddered. Matt felt Tim's arms go around his waist from behind. He kissed his neck. Matt turned in his arms and placed one arm around his neck, the other around his chest. Tim did likewise.

"No more signals," Matt said with a smile, "Let's do this right!"

Again their lips met, yet without the passion they'd felt minutes before. They both felt a closeness this time. It was more a contented feeling.

"Oh I love this!......A dream come true! Better than my dreams! I'm kissing Timmy's pouty lips! And I'm holding him....And he's holding me! And....and we know exactly what to do! We can sort of read each other. It's like a dance! And I don't care who leads!"

"Boys!"

They both jumped apart as the door connecting the house opened. It was a seemingly, cheap aluminum storm door for such a modern home. Clara appeared, clasping the neck of a sweater she'd no doubt just put on.

"I just saw the both of you pedaling like the dickens up the street! Are you wet?"

"Oh no, Gram. We just made it!"

"Well now I was watching the weatherman. I saw that map and tried to call you five times! I wanted to warn you boys of the storm!......You never answered!"

"Oh! Sorry Gram. I left my phone in the tent."

"Well now I don't believe this is the weather for that damn tent! You boys stay in the house here so long!"

"That's okay, Gram. We just wanna watch the storm from the garage here."

"Well, just don't go running out onto the front lawn during this!"

After she returned into the house, Tim set two cement blocks near the door. Over these, he placed a dirty, cobwebbed plank.

"Come on. Let's just sit and watch the storm."

They became fascinated at the brilliant forked lightning bolts.

"I read where lightning can be as hot as the surface of the sun!" Matt put in excitedly, "Well, it only lasts for a fraction of a second. This would be neat to write a science report on!"

Tim moved closer to him.

"You and your writing!......You've got enough reports to fill a moving van! You should sell 'em to other kids! I don't think anyone likes writing reports. You could make some big bucks!"

"Nah!......Teachers would catch that. Everyone kinda has their own style of writing. I'm sure we'd get caught! I don't want any trouble!"

Tim placed his arm around Matt's waist from behind. He had a silly smile. Matt hung his face.

"Oh Matty, you're blushing again!"

"Cut that out! We almost got caught kissing a few minutes ago!"

"Awh, I'm just doing this to make you blush......You're just sooo cute when you do that!"

Tim gave him a quick kiss on the cheek.

"...You're right Matty......It's great to just be out with each other. It really means a lot to me. I'm not lying here. That would have just taken me years 'n' years. Shy? Something awful! Scared? Well, not as much as you. But I never got to that stage. I was just too shy to think about how it might change things. Oh shit! If you shot me down......Wow! I don't know what I'd do! I really think I'd be crazy now! I really think I'd go crazy!"

Matt turned and placed one hand on Tim's back, the other on his chest. It was sort of his gesture of supporting him.

"...Timmy......Time?!......One day at a time?....One hour at a time?....Remember?...... Let's not get into all this shit about what could have happened......Yeah. I guess it could. But it didn't. That's the important thing right now."

Tim stood and bent toward Matt's face. He took his head in his hands and kissed him again. He returned to sitting beside him.

"How I wanna just go out into that tent and hold you. I wanna squeeze you!"

"Let's!"

He shook his head.

"Not during an electrical storm!......Gramma will throw a hissy-fit! She isn't afraid of the storms themselves. She just doesn't like electrical stuff to be on. Even in the house we couldn't watch TV or play games or surf the Net!......Let's just go in for a snack. The way this is coming down, it can't last very long!"

They entered the kitchen.

"Oh, boys?"

"Yeah. It's just us Gram........We're just going to grab a snack," Tim said, looking into the living room, "No Gram!......Sit back down in your rocker! We know how to pour milk!"

"Oh, please......I want to help. I'm just so thrilled!"

Tim quickly ran for plastic glasses, the container of milk in the refrigerator and a loaf of bread from a cabinet drawer. He quickly ran back to the refrigerator and opened it again. He peeked around the door at Matt.

"Bologna, ham, salami, kielbasa or roast beef?" he rattled off quickly.

"Ham."

"Sounds good here too!"

He made it as far as the island.

"Now you boys let me take care of the kitchen here."

"Gramma!......We're making sandwiches! You don't have to be a French chef in an overpriced restaurant to spread butter and mayo on a piece of bread!"

She scooted them to the breakfast nook by the shoulders.

"Now you boys just sit right here while I get to fuss over you!"

She gave Matt a quick hug across his shoulders.

"I'm just soooo pleased you made friends with little Timmy here. And so is Ken and Ayumi! You're so much a part of the family you know."

She returned to the island and reached for a table knife. She paused with her hands in midair.

"...Now place your orders!"

Minutes later, as the boys ate, they gazed out the window. Although the wind and lightning had passed, the rain continued to pour.

"Gramma!......I can put the meat 'n' stuff away! Will you sit down?!"

"I'm enjoying every minute of this!...

"...And I made up some hamburger patties for tonight for the grill. Should this rain ever stop! And I have some frankfurters in here that are already stuffed with cheese!......Just the way you like 'em! I'll be fixing a salad just minutes before so it's fresh and crispy!"

"Ohhh! Gram!"

Matt took his sandwich down from his mouth.

"Gram?......Why don't you come out on the patio tonight?......Me 'n' Timmy can serve you supper tonight!"

"Oh my stars!......ME?......Sit down while a couple young boys serve me?......Why I'd feel like an invalid!......What do you boys think I am?....An old lady?!......I'm quite capable of getting off my ass!"

Both boys giggled and shook their heads.

It was seven o'clock in the evening. The storm had long passed. Tim was at the grill complaining.

"Shit!......Why is it, no matter where you stand, the smoke goes right into your face?!"

Matt wiped down the tiny table and began on the chairs.

They'd spent the afternoon in the kitchen reading science magazines. They'd glance at each other, blush and giggle. Several times they joined hands across the table.

"GRAM!" Tim, yelled as she attempted the stairs with a large bowl of salad.

Matt quickly ran up and took the bowl as she reached for the rail.

"Now don't you run off with that!.....You can hand it here as soon as I get onto the cement down here."

She placed the bowl on the table, about to sit.

"Wait Gram!" Matt called out, "I gotta wipe that chair off!"

After she had sat, Matt folded the towel and draped it over his arm. He bowed.

"Good evening ma'am. Welcome to Mickelle's. My name is Matt and I'll be your waiter tonight."

She quickly got to her feet again.

"Oh you boys are so SILLY! I can lift a burger with a spatula!"

"Gram!" Matt put in quickly, "These terrace stones are wet! What if you slip and fall?"

"Well then hopefully I won't bust my ass!"

Tim started toward the table with a plate. He couldn't help a giggle slipping out.

"Gramma! I'm bringing the burgers to the table!"

They were nearly finished eating and the west grew dark again. No thunder could be heard, but faint flashes of lightning could be seen. Tim hoped his grandmother wouldn't see it.

"Gram! We aren't even done here and already you're stacking the dishes! Me an' Matty will bring everything into the kitchen for you. You can put stuff away and do the dishes."

"Well, thank you!"

Later that evening the boys sat in the tent. The sun had set. Faint thunder could be heard in the distance. Matt sat on Tim's sleeping bag. Tim rested up against the cooler, with the fluorescent lamp at his shoulder. Both sipped the last of their sodas.

"I sure hope that Gram doesn't hear that thunder. She won't want us out here."

"Thunderstorms don't bother me," Matt put in, "It's the wind that scares me sometime. And out in this tent, that could be bad."

"Wanna go inside?"

"No!"

"Good!"

Tim placed his empty soda aside with a slight grin. He made his way over to Matt.

"Sit up for a minute....Now raise your arms and point your fingers up."

Matt gave a questioning look but sat up. Tim pulled his t-shirt up quickly and over his head. He removed his own as well.

"I really don't want these shirts in the way tonight......I wanna feel you."

Matt suddenly smiled.

"I like that idea!......Let me kill the light here..."

Tim pulled it away.

"No....No!......I want that off the cooler and right here next to our faces."

"Why?"

Tim tapped his finger to Matt's nose.

"Because I'm gonna get you to blush more. And I wanna be able to see it!"

"Oh come on now. That's embarrassing."

"You don't have to be embarrassed. I think it's cute. I'm not joking...

"Now let's get into this bag. It's chilly in here."

Both slid into the bag without even unzipping the side. Matt settled onto his back. Before Tim was fully settled, he was already reaching out to him.

"Oh! Yes! Yes!......This is going to feel so good!"

Tim pressed his chest up to Matt as he reached back and drew the bag up to their necks. He continued looking closely at his face.

"...Matty?......Am I smiling enough for you now?"

"Huh?"

"I mean, am I showing off my braces to you enough?"

"Never!......You could never show your braces to me enough."

Tim seriously looked at Matt closely as he brushed his hair aside.

"Well I can't see your eyes enough! You really gotta trim your hair just to your eyebrows. I don't like it when I can't see 'em!"

"Okay. Deal!"

"...Yeah, Matty......You kept tellin' me you liked my braces. How I hate these things! I was sure you knew that. I thought you were just bein' nice and sayin' you liked 'em so I wouldn't feel bad about it...

"Then I visited you that first day at your place. You went to the bathroom. I started up the computer and just started clicking around. I wasn't bein' nosy, I don't think. I just wanted to see what you had on there......You know, see what your interests were. Wow! When I found that file with all those kids wearing braces......then I knew! Oh, Matty........You'll never know how great I felt about that!......That was something really great for me. I really started feeling better!......Well, I was still shy but......I guess I wasn't quite as nervous anymore......Well self-conscious..."

"Yeah. You covered 'em up pretty well for a bit there. It wasn't 'til we were in the lunch room that you finally smiled big enough. I remember that so clearly. I kinda yelled out, 'You got braces,' a bit too loud. Awh, your mouth just snapped shut. I didn't mean to make you feel bad. I just got so excited about it!...

"And I'll tell you something else....ummm....Well, maybe I'd better not..."

"...You're blushing again!......Tell me. Come on. I really want to know."

"...Well, when I was layin' in bed that night......I was thinkin' about the whole day. How we met 'n' stuff. That first time I saw you in the hallway. Holy shit Timmy! You kept getting closer 'n' closer to my locker. I could see you better with each step you took. I saw your shiny, black hair. That cool Asian jacket with the dragon on the back. Then I saw your big, black eyes. Oh shit, Timmy......I actually had to hang onto my locker to keep from fallin' over!"

"Really?"

"Uh huh......I wanted to keep glancing at you, but......I didn't want you to see me doin' it! Oh Timmy! My hands got all sweaty, I started breathin' hard. I seriously thought my knees were going to give out!"

"Really?!"

"Yup! And I just couldn't look at your eyes too much. That's when I felt like that witch that was just melting."

"You really thought that?!"

"Yup!.....And I had to get my notebook!......To hide myself!"

"Hide yourself?"

"Yeah......You know......My stiffy!......I didn't want you to see my stiffy!"

"You got a stiffy just lookin' at my eyes?!"

"Well, not just your eyes!....All of you!......Oh Timmy! You were the most beautiful, gorgeous, keeuuuttest boy I'd ever seen!"

"Really?!"

"Oh yeah!......Well anyhow......When I got home that night and went to bed. I wasn't even thinking about your eyes any more......Just your braces.

"Oh!.....I mean, not that they hurt you or anything. I didn't even think that! I just thought of how......umm....sexy they were..."

"Hee,hee,hee......Sexy?"

"Yeah......I kept those braces pictures on a flash drive that was password protected. I didn't want anyone seeing them! Then I started thinkin'...Well, they sure aren't nude or anything. They weren't dirty pictures or anything. I got tired of putting in the flash all the time and putting in my password. So I decided to just leave them on the drive. And I was layin' in bed, thinking about those......those....gorgeous braces....and....and..."

He suddenly put his hand over his eyes and blushed again.

"...Oh shit!....I can't tell you this!"

"Ohhhh, your blushing again. Oh wow! That's just soooo cute!......Come on. Tell me."

"Oh, I can't!......Please?!"

Tim pulled his hand from his eyes.

"Gee....I didn't even have to get you blushing!....You're doin' it all by yourself!"

"Oh come on. This is really embarrassing!"

"...No!....Come on and tell me..."

"...Well, I started thinkin'......Oh shit! You're gonna think I'm really kinky here!"

"...Hee,hee,hee....Kinky?......Now I'm really interested! Tell me."

"...Well, I was thinking of all these ways......that......I could lick 'em!"

"You wanted to lick my braces?......Hee,hee,hee..."

"Yeah!......And I was having all these daydreams......where I'd just kinda push your lips open with my thumbs......and lick 'em......and kiss 'em."

"Wow!......Really?!"

"Oh shit now! Let's just change the subject. I'm like totally wasted here!"

"No!......Don't be like that...

"That first time at your house when we were looking at the braces pictures? I saw that last one......or pretty close to the last one. Wow! He looked almost like you! His hair was a little lighter and shorter. His eyes were almost like yours. Big, round 'n' blue.......Remember I said something about him being a doll?"

"Oh yeah. That really got me excited. I couldn't believe I heard that! I had to scoot under the desk more. Hiding another stiffy!"

"Well, that was just after I bumped your cheek......Did you notice I put your math workbook on my lap?......Well, I was hiding mine!"

"You were?"

"Oh yeah, but then I came out with that DOLL thing! Oh! I was just so embarrassed about blurting that out! That's when I clicked off. And I went to all those math sites......Let me tell you, it died quick!"

"Yeah, I remember that........I kept thinking if I heard that right. Then I was wondering if that was just a slip....or if you did that on purpose......like another signal or something."

"Oh gee, that was definitely a slip! I was soooo hoping you didn't think anything of that."

"Well, I was!......I was just gettin' so hard, I had to hide Junior under the desk!"

"Hee,hee......Junior?......Hee,hee"

"...Well that's what I call 'im.........An' sometimes he just keeps poppin' up for no reason! I hate that!......I keep wishin' they'd invent some kind of pill for that or something."

"Why?..."

"Because it's embarrassing at times!......I don't even have to be thinking anything remotely sexy and....Boing!"

"Hee,hee......Well, I don't think I have that much of a problem......Junior! Hee,hee."

"I don't know where I came up with that!"

"...I just call it....IT!......I never gave it a name!......Junior?....Hee,hee. That's kinda cute!"

Tim continued to star down at Matt. Matt could see his silver braces and absentmindedly put his finger on them and traced them along his upper teeth.

"...In Spanish, silver smile is sonrisa de plata. That's what I called it from day one! And every time I see them, I'd just about flip out!"

"Reerey?" Tim asked, his lips being held open.

Matt quickly drew his hand back.

"Oh! I'm sorry!........I'm just kinda daydreaming again."

Tim managed a shy smile.

"I still hate these things. But it makes me feel a bit better that you actually like 'em."

They gazed at each other for a moment.

"Oh Matt......I really love that thin little tongue of yours......It kinda curls up at the tip. That drives me nuts!"

Matt began pulling Tim's head closer.

"...Ohhh......I just gotta lick those braces again....Come here..."

Tim placed his open mouth close as Matt's tongue ran over his upper braces.

"Mmmmm....Oh yeah....Mmmmm"

Tim opened his mouth more and pressed his braces into Matt's lips.

"Holy shit!......I wasn't expecting this!....Oh! Those beautiful braces! I can even feel the bottom ones on my lower lip! Oh! There's Junior at instant attention again!"

He held Tim's head as Tim held his shoulders. Matt slowly ran his lips back and forth, feeling the braces being pressed tighter and tighter.

"Mmmm.....Mmmm....Ooooo....Oh shit!...That's enough! That's enough, Timmy. I have such a hard time just breathing when I kiss you. And......and Junior just gets so hard it hurts!"

"No......I need more of that tongue now. I need more of that skinny, slippery tongue."

"Oh!....Oh!......My tongue is so far into his mouth!......He's even pushing his lips into my mouth!....He keeps circling my tongue with his! Oh shit....Oh shit. Oh no! He's pressing his thigh up against me. And I can feel him against my thigh! Oh! He's rubbing too hard! I'm so worried I'm just gonna let loose!....I gotta press against him more. Then maybe he'll stop rubbin' me so much!....Oh, he's so hot down there! Right through both of our jeans! He's so hard too....And kinda big! Oh! I don't wanna let loose! How embarrassing will that be?! I gotta stop! I gotta stop, now!"

Matt drew his face away from Tim, breaking their kiss.

"Oh Timmy! That's enough!....That's enough! I....I just can' breathe any more! And I'm gonna be honest with you......If you rub up against me any more....I'm gonna come in my pants!"

Tim only gave him a sly grin.

"That's okay Matty......Let me satisfy you. This feels so good."

"No!....No!....Please stop!"

"Okay. Okay.....We can just lay here for awhile."

They lie still in silence for a minute, both breathing heavy.

"Did it start raining again?" Matt asked, his head tilted up.

"Wow, yeah. I think I hear it on the tent. Coming down kinda hard too!"

(beep, beep)

"That's Gramma!"

Tim drew his cell from his jacket again.

"Hello?...

"...No Gram. We're okay..........No, it's not wet in here.........No, the tent's not leaking ............We're warm and dry, Gram...........No! It's not cold in here at all! We're in the sleep ......We're in our sleeping bags!"

He glanced up at Matt with a smile.

"...Gram......It's actually a bit warm in here!"

Matt giggled.

"...Well I don't care what the weatherman said. We're warm 'n' dry..... .....Gram!....Gram! If the tent starts leaking and we start getting wet, you better believe we'll come into the house..............Lightning isn't gonna hurt us out here. We're low to the ground. It's not like we're camping on a mountain!............Gram, you know we won't sleep in a puddle of water while we shiver. I promise if it gets wet in here, we'll come inside.........Okay........Bye..."

He placed the phone on top of the cooler, from what he believed may become a damp floor. Reaching over, he switched the lamp off. Neither could believe the total darkness they suddenly found themselves in. Even the patio lights outside didn't seem as bright as they were the night before. Although they couldn't hear thunder, lightning could be seen flashing through the canvas.

Matt felt Tim scoot down beside him. Although he couldn't see him, he was sure he was on his side. He knew his face was close to his. He could feel the heat. He felt Tim rub his chest in small circles.

"...So...." Tim began, "...Now where did we leave off?"

Matt reached out to hold his chest.

"...We left off with me wanting to hold you and squeeze yer skinny ribs!"

"Okay. Just don't dig your fingers. I swear Matty, I'll piss the bed!"

Tim lie half on top of Matt. He drew close to his face. Matt felt his fingers pass through his hair and move across his cheek.

"...Oh this just feels so good......I could almost start crying again!"

"No. Tim......One day at a time..."

"No. I'm not thinking of any bad stuff now. In fact, it's good stuff. I was just so scared! I came here to a new school. I didn't know if you were gay, straight, or otherwise!..."

"Otherwise?"

"...Yeah......Bi......Whatever!..."

"...Are there really bi's?......Is that really possible?"

"Well sure!"

"I just can't picture that in my mind......Girls 'n' boys?......And sometimes at the same time?!......Isn't that kinda....umm....weird?..."

"Well sure, why not?"

"...I don't know!......One way or the other......But not both!"

"Well what's so strange about that?..."

"Well, I like boys......Some boys like girls......I can't see myself liking both!"

"Well that's 'cause your not BI!"

"Oh shit! I'll have to look that up on the Net. I don't think I'll ever understand that!"

"Oh, Matty......Now I think I'm getting tired......It's been a kinda long day for the both of us. I just keep thinking of everything that's happened today."

Matt put his palms to his back and pulled him tight.

"Yeah......but it's been great!........You know......I never really did get the words together to come out to you. I kept tryin' to tell you! I just kept seein' your eyes lookin' up at me. You didn't look scared....or disgusted!........In fact....you looked like you were sorta relaxed....and sorta........well....like you were expecting something."

He felt Tim's head nod.

"I was hoping Matt!......Ohhhh how I was hoping!......And then you said you had something to tell me and thought I might not like it........You told me how scared you were. And you asked if we were friends an' that. I got a little scared there. I mean I thought if you were really trying to come out to me....and didn't want to break-up our friendship......I thought you might not even say anything!......And....and that would kinda put the ball in my side of the court. I couldn't do it Matt! I was just so shy! Find words?!....I'd open my mouth and nothing would come out!...

"That's when I kinda started rubbing your legs......Trying to relax you. I wanted you to keep talking. All I saw was your hair hanging in your eyes......And those EYES of yours! Those HUGE, shiny, circles of turquoise!......Holy shit! Those gems!......Those polished sapphires! And you were just lookin' down at me. And you quit talking! I wanted to just squeeze your lungs to get it to come out! You put your hands on each side of my head and kept lowering your face closer to mine. That's when I quit noticing your eyes. All I saw was your mouth!......Your lips! I was sooooo hoping you were goin' to try to kiss me!...

"...Then I felt you lips! They just, sorta barely touched mine at first. I was sooo hoping I wasn't having a sexy dream! I was so scared I was gonna wake up! That's when I just grabbed you! And I put my hands under your shirt. I wanted to feel you! I didn't want to feel your t-shirt....and wake up finding I was huggin' my fuckin' pillow!"

"Hee,hee"

"Yeah, Matty......I know it sounds silly. But I was so scared I was gonna wake up! I didn't wanna find out I was dreaming! I wanted to know it was real! In just two seconds it was like my whole body was in fire! We were KISSING! You didn't have to say anything now! ......And I didn't have to say anything! ......We were both out to each other and we could stop all the hints 'n' games! It just felt so good! I felt that skinny little tongue of yours run over my teeth....my braces. I wanted to just suck on it! I wanted to feel it between my lips! I just wanted that kiss to go on and on but I just couldn't breathe good enough through my nose! I had to stop! I had to inhale air!......Maybe Gramma's right. You can suffocate in a tent!..."

"Awhh, Timmy......That was kinda nice. I was wondering how you felt about that...

"Yeah I was really tryin' to just say it...........I just didn't know how! All I could do was stare at your mouth. You had a kinda shy little smile. And I could see those braces through the opening!......I think I just lost all control!...

"Yeah....I did it kinda slow......In case you wanted to turn your head away or push me away! I was so scared that was gonna change everything between us!"

He felt Tim's arms tighten around his neck. He felt his lips on his bare shoulder.

"IT DID! IT CHANGED EVERYTHING!"

"...Yeah....but in a good way!"

"...Yes!....Yes!"

Tim's face brushed against his cheek. Matt felt a tear."

"...Oh come on Timmy. Let's not be sad......Let's be happy!"

"....I am!......Oh Matty....I'm just soooo happy!......I didn't think it was possible to be this happy!"

They simply held each other in silence for several minutes. Both were lost in thoughts and lost for words. Tim ran his fingers through Matt's hair and over his cheek. Matt rubbed his back and squeezed his ribs. Both sniffled.

"...Oh Matty," Tim gasped, "I just gotta get a nap in here. I wanted to just hug and kiss all night, but I can't!......I just feel so tired....so burnt out!"

"...Yeah......I know exactly what you're sayin'. I kinda feel the same......Just drained...... It's been a big day for the both of us!......I was just layin' here thinking about it all....Wow, everything that happened today......Yeah...

"We'll just sleep for as long as we can. You just remember that tomorrow, you aren't goin' anywhere 'til I kiss and lick those braces for like twenty minutes!"

Within minutes both fell limp against each other. They were emotionally exhausted. Rain fell in torrents against the tent. Brilliant, blue-white lightning, forked through the dark sky. Thunder literally crashed and reverberated through the ground. Wind pushed small twigs along the ground and against the tent. The canvas of the tent ballooned outward at one moment and then collapsed inward again. It popped and snapped in the wind. Within, both boys slept soundly in each others arms. They each had tears on their cheeks and a shy, tiny smile on their mouth.

The early morning sky was crystal clear. In the east, the sky was brilliant red-orange. Rain still continued to drip from trees and eaves. Along the ground was a slight mist where rain was already evaporating into the cool air. Birds chirped in the distance. Nearby, several squirrels seemed to chatter and screech at each other. Somewhere in the neighborhood a dog barked. There was a dead calm in the chilly air.

Within the tent, Matt began to move around.

"Oh, Timmy's still got his arms around my neck! That just feels so good!......And his thigh is up against Junior!......Oh shit, Junior!......Don't you ever go to sleep?! Oh, he's gonna wake up 'n' feel me!...

"Why am I so worried about that?......Well it is a bit embarrassing!......He felt me yesterday!....Well, we were both kinda hot at the time. Funny how you don't think of that kinda stuff when you're huggin' 'n' kissin'......Well, not too much anyhow.

"The tent's getting light and I can hear birds singing. The rain must be done. What do we do today?......Go to the river?......Take him out to the lake?......I just don't feel like doing much of anything! I just wanna lay in here......All day!......Even if we don't do anything! All I wanna do is just hold him. Just like I'm doin' right now...

"Awh, poor little Timmy was crying last night he was so happy. Oh shit, that got me goin' too. Oh this is crazy! We just met each other!......And I really think I love him! Oh damn!......Isn't there a word between like and love?! I guess there's different degrees of love......Just like there are different kinds of love. But I'm thinking of a....a romantic love here. How about a real lot of like?......A whole bunch of like?......A....a humongous like? Hee,hee. Gee, I'm getting silly here!......Ummm......A little bit of love?.....A tad bit of love? Oh what kind of word is midway between the two?!"

Tim moaned as he pressed up against Matt. His arms tightened around his neck.

"Is Timmy waking up?......He's kinda moving all around down there. I can feel him kinda rubbing our bare bellies together. Ohhhh, that's kinda nice, really. And he's sorta...... humpin' my leg. Is he still asleep?......Maybe he's just havin' a sexy dream. Oh! Oh! Now he's rubbin' Junior with his leg! He's so hard! ......And he's always so hot down there!"

"...Mmmm....Oh Matty! Oh shit, this just feels so good!"

"I didn't know you were awake."

"Just for a minute......I felt your arms around me. Oh wow!....Oh shit!......I just can't get close enough to you!"

Matt felt Tim's lips kiss his shoulder and slowly make their way to his neck.

"Eeeeee! Timmy! That drives me crazy!......You gotta slow down here!"

"If I don't stop him......I'm gonna let loose in my pants!......In about ten seconds!"

He placed his elbows against the ground and turned over, taking Tim with him. Tim now lie on his back. He wasn't wearing his usual leather headband. His shiny black hair fell over one eye and partially hid his mouth. Matt stared at his face for a moment.

"Oh Timmy!......You just look so cute this morning!"

Tim gave a brilliant, silver smile as he reached out to hold Matt's chest. He pulled him close and kissed his neck again.

"...Matty!......I don't want you an inch away from me! I just gotta hug you!"

"Oh! He's twisting his hips all around! He's pressing against my thigh again! He trying to get his thigh up against me!.....I can't let him do that!......I'm already just seconds away!......I gotta calm down some. Back away from him a little. I'll press up against him more! Maybe he'll like it enough and forget about me a little..."

"Oh Matty!....Oh Matty!" he gasped, "It's soooo good to be able to kiss your cute, creamy cheeks!......No more bumps! No more enjoying it for fractions of a second!"

He covered Matt's neck and cheek with loud smacks. His hot breath tickled Matt's ear.

"...Ummm....Timmy....We gotta slow down here a bit."

"...I can't!......I'm trying!......I'm really trying!"

"Oh now he's got his hands on my ass! He's pulling me tighter down onto his leg!"

"Oh Matty!......This just feels so good!......I.....I can't stop! I don't wanna stop!"

"Oh, he's bending his knee! He's pressing that skinny thigh up against me! He wants it to feel good for me too! Oh shit! Oh shit!....I can't hold back much longer!"

Matt reached out with his hands and drew the hair from around Tim's mouth. He began to kiss and lick at his braces. They continued to squirm for a minute more. Tim tilted his head away for a moment.

"Oh Matty!......Enough kissin'!......I can't breathe!......Oh! Don't stop rubbin' up against me!....Don't stop!....Don't stop!....Oh Matty!....Oh Matty....Oh Babe!....Oh Babe! Oh Babe!"

Matt glanced at his face for a moment. His eyes closed tightly as he clenched his teeth, his mouth open. For a moment, it appeared he was in pain. He suddenly felt Tim gripping his chest tightly, as his hips raised. His back rose in a high arch as his thighs began to tremble. Matt could no longer hold back himself. He felt his own thighs begin to tremble without warning.

"Oh Matty!....Oh Babe!.....Oh! Oh! Oh!.....DARLING!"

Both of them held tightly to each other as their bodies trembled violently. For a fraction of a second both thought there had been a brilliant flash of light through the tent. Their hearts pounded for a moment before they felt the sudden surge pass.

Matt hugged Tim's neck with one arm as he buried his face into his shoulder. They lie still for a moment. Matt felt Tim's arms hug him deeply and tightly around his chest.

"Oh shit!....Oh shit!" Tim panted.

"...Oh, Timmy (gasp!)......This is....ummm....like really embarrassing, you know?..."

He felt Tim's hands rub circles over his bare back.

"...No Matty!....No....No!....Don't feel like that. I'm bein' honest with you here. Oh wow. That was like the BIGGEST ONE I ever HAD!......Oh shit Matty!......I'm like soaked down there! Don't feel bad....Don't be embarrassed. Oh! Just hold me a minute more. Just lay there."

Matt's head turned slowly as he gazed at Tim's neck. He kissed it gently.

"...Oh Timmy......I don't know what's going on here. Yesterday I came out to you."

His eyes began to tear.

"...But not enough!," he whimpered, "I never told you I LOVE you!"

"Oh, Matty........I've been having a hard time with that too. I think I've loved you all along. Ever since I saw you at your locker. Oh!......That long, empty hallway. There was just this strange ummm....feeling in there. Not weird strange....Just kinda nice strange. I mean I couldn't even see you face....your features yet. There was just something in the air! I was shy! Awful shy! But I wouldn't exactly call it fear! I wasn't scared!..."

Tim gripped Matt's head and placed several wet kisses on his cheek. They hadn't been quick. They'd been lingering, deliberate, intentional and warm. It was as though he was not only enjoying it, but trying to communicate something to him. He distinctly felt Tim's open lips as his tongue ran tiny circles over spots.

"...Mmmm....It's so nice to be able to feel those cheeks against my mouth. Touching 'em for just a fraction of a second used to be enough, but not anymore! When I got so close to your face like this, it drove me crazy!......I think I knew right then, I loved you! It was just so hard not to kiss you. Yeah, it wasn't bein' scared......It was this damned shyness of mine! I wanted to grab your head and kiss you like this....Muawh! And like this....Muawh!"

He held Matt's head to his chest again for a moment.

"It'll be okay Matty......Yes....I love you too!......But just like you say......We'll take it one day at a time....One hour at a time."

Tim reached for Matt's chin and tilted his face up to him as he gave a shy smile. His lips closed on the tip of his nose as his tongue ran a circle over it.

"Oh......you little Angel!......I love you too, Matty..."

They lie in silence for another minute.

"...Ummm....It'll be okay, Matty......Let me check the time..."

He quickly got from the bag to his knees.

"Oh shit!....It's getting light out there."

He reached for his phone on the cooler and flipped it open.

"...Good! It's only five after six!......Gramma usually sleeps 'til eight...

"We gotta get in there and shower. Be quiet. I'll grab all our clothes here and toss 'em into the washer. I ahhh....ummm....don't want my mom finding stains in my underwear!"

Matt blushed as he got to his feet. He wiped a tear from his eye.

"...Okay," Tim continued, "In the laundry room entryway, there's a small metal shower cabinet. The guy who owned the house before us used that when he was out gardening. I'll use that one and you use the one in the regular bathroom......It's kinda chilly in there, but I'll manage."

He lifted the flap on the tent and they stepped out.

"...Now I don't wanna wake Gram if I can help it. She'll wonder why I'm starting the washer!......And she'll just keep fussing over us! We can have cereal today!..."

He suddenly stopped and turned. He went to the far side of the tent. Lifting his wet shirt from the ground, he brushed twigs and leaves off it.

"...I almost forgot my pukey shirt!......I'll throw this in too!"

The boys came from their showers. They were shirtless and barefoot, simply with shorts. It was obvious the shorts had been flannel sweatpants with the legs cut off. Tim was setting a plastic gallon jug of milk on the table of the nook. Matt pulled two boxes of cereal from an overhead cabinet. The door closed with a bang.

"...Shhhh!......Gramma!" Tim forcefully whispered.

They poured cereal into bowls and covered it with milk. Tim drew toast from a four slice toaster and slipped them onto a plate. They sat and ate in silence for a moment, both in thought. The washer hummed in the rear entryway. They glanced at their bowls. They glanced at the cereal boxes. They glanced out the window. The only other sound was their spoons striking their bowls. Tim glanced up.

"....Matty?....ummm......Did I yell out......Darling?"

Matt had just spooned cereal into his mouth. He gave a tight grin as a drop of milk leaked from between his lips. He blushed, smiled and nodded his head.

Tim placed his elbows on the table and covered his eyes with both hands.

"...Ohmigod!....Shit!....No!"

Matt glanced toward the dining room through the door. He leaned forward, tugging at Tim's wrist.

"...And don't feel bad about that. Wow! I was never expecting that! I think that's what pushed me over the edge!........Don't worry about it!......I think it was ummm....kinda sexy!"

"...Oh, I've never called a boy Babe before......much less Darling!"

"...Cut it out Tim......I thought it was really....hot! It really made me feel good!"

They returned to their bowls once again, spoons clinking. Again they glanced at the cereal boxes, the surface of the table, out the window. Tim looked up again.

"...Ummm........Would you say......that was like......our first time?"

Again Matt pulled the spoon from his mouth. His eyebrows raised then lowered. His mouth was pursed in thought. Again another drop of milk escaped. He nodded quickly as he swallowed.

"...Yeah!......Sure....Why not?!......It's not like we gotta be bare-assed, right?"

Tim glanced down at the table in thought. He stirred his cereal absentmindedly. He nodded his head.

"...Yeah......Okay! I guess so!..."

"Well, hey........We were together!........It's not like we were home in our rooms!.... Ummm......Thinkin' about each other!..."

"...Yeah......I hate that!"

"Hee, hee, hee!"

Tim slapped his hand over his eyes.

"Oh shit! I don't believe I said that!"

"You're blushing Timmy!"

"Oh shit....shit....shit!"

Matt pulled at his wrists.

"I'm just teasin' you........I....ummm......well....thought......about you too!"

Tim uncovered his face, smiling yet still blushing.

"...Really?..."

"Ohhhh yeah!........Lots of times!"

"...Oh, wow!"

Minutes later, Tim remained a bit embarrassed and shy. He gathered up the milk container and cereal boxes. Going for the cabinets, he stood on his toes to put up the boxes.

"...Oh Timmy........You've even got cute little feet!"

Tim shyly smiled as he started for the refrigerator. He was about to pull the handle.

"...I wanna kiss yer toes!"

Tim, still holding the handle, dropped into a quick squat.

"...Eeeeee! No! My feet tickle too!......Noooo!"

"...Well shit!......I'm runnin' out of places here!..."

"...Well mostly my ribs 'n' belly......Just don't dig your fingers!"

He placed the milk inside, closing the door.

"...And NO Frenchin' my belly button!........I swear to God! I'll start pissin'! And if I don't have my shorts on......I piss right in your face!"

"Ohhhh........Sounds kinky!"

"I'm not jokin' Matty! I'll just lose all control! I really wish I wasn't like that, but I can't help it!........And....and you're the first person to touch me anywhere!"

Matt helped carry bowls and glasses to the sink.

"Oh!....Matt!....The washer! Check the dial and see if it's in final rinse..."

Matt returned and picked up a dishtowel for the dishes Tim had placed in the rack.

"Nah. Final rinse is just starting."

"Awww! That means another six or eight minutes yet! I don't think Gram will hear the dryer, but she'll sure hear the washer!"

Matt stepped up behind Tim at the sink. He placed his arms around his waist and kissed his shoulder.

"Let's not go anywhere today......I just wanna lay around in the tent with you..."

"Sounds nice......We can do that..."

Tim turned and held Matt's shoulders. He tilted his head and placed a soft, open-mouthed kiss on his lips.

"BOYS?!......Is that you?!"

They quickly jumped apart.

"...Yeah Gram!......We're in the kitchen!"

"...Oh dear....My stars!....Only half past seven and you boys are up already?"

"...Ummm....We never went to sleep yet. We were up talkin' 'n' jokin' all night."

"...Well, I guess that's what this business is all about...

"Oh my stars!....There you both stand with simply your shorts on! And barefoot on this cold tile floor! You're gonna freeze out there today. I've got slippers and this heavy housecoat on and I'm freezin' my buns off!"

She made her way to the coffeemaker and poured the last half mug of cold coffee remaining.

"Gram, we aren't ninety years old! It's a bit chilly now, but it'll warm up!"

She placed the mug into the microwave and pressed a button.

"I'll have you know I'm a young lady of seventy!

"Now look!......You boys ate and your finishing your dishes up! You didn't leave anything for me!"

"Gram......You live here!....You aren't our maid! You're not supposed to be doing any work."

"Well this isn't work! You boys will understand that when you get older. I so enjoy fussing over MY BOYS!"

"Gram........If you want to fuss, you can make me 'n' Matt a real treat for supper..."

"You boys have enough junk food out in that tent!"

"No, no!......A treat for supper. You can make us two of your dreamy hot roast beef sandwiches for supper!"

"Well I can certainly do that!"

She removed her coffee from the microwave and went for the breakfast nook.

"Do I hear the washer running?"

"Yes Gram. We threw a few things in."

She looked up suspiciously. She shook her finger.

"You boys got WET last night and you're covering up! That tent is leaking!....Isn't it?"

"...No we didn't get wet. We were out on the lawn this morning. We were wrestling and being silly. We got all mud and grass!"

"Well I'm capable of tossing a few things into the washer."

"Well, so can I!......It's no big deal."

"Oh my stars!........Don't you know I woke up last night and heard that awful thunderstorm. I just wasn't with it enough to even recall you boys were out there in that tent. Perhaps it was better that way. I'd never have got back to sleep."

"Gram, you worry too much."

"Well yes I do!......You've got a nice room in here. Why you could spread those bags out on the floor. It would be just like a camping trip without all the dangers."

"Gram......It's not dangerous......We're out in the backyard, not in some jungle somewhere!"

She watched the boys place the bowls back into the cabinets, tableware into the drawer. Their damp hair still clung to their heads. Their faces were clean and bright pink. They seemed much too well rested for having been up all night. She saw their thin bodies in their shorts.

"...Today one hears so much about child obesity!......Why those people should come over here. If either one of you got caught in a windstorm, why you'd get blown away! I can count the ribs on the both of you from over here! Matthew, I can see your spine! And Timmy, the way those hips of yours just stick out....you look like one of those kids with that....that Anna-wrecksa....whatever!"

"It's called anorexia nervosa, Gram......and mostly girls get it. It's some kind of psychological problem. We don't have it! We eat a lot!"

Matt began to dry out the sink with the dishtowel. He ran it over the chrome faucet. It hadn't been something he'd done at home, but in this 'gourmet TV kitchen,' it only seemed natural.

"...Now you boys get!......You've done fine in here."

"Okay, Gram........We're goin' back out to get some sleep. You just yell out the door or call the cell when supper's ready."

"Oh! I'll not!......You boys are on vacation. You come in when you're ready. It takes nothing for hot sandwiches. I'll have everything ready and we'll just....as you say....nuke 'em!"

Already the inside of the tent was warm from the morning sun. Tim crawled around unzipping the flaps over the windows. Matt pulled at the twisted and wrinkled sleeping bag, fluffing it up. He fluffed the pillows and tossed them back. Tim stood outside for a moment, tying back the main flaps. He stepped inside and zipped the netting.

Matt looked around.

"I was kinda hoping that you wouldn't open the tent up quite so far."

"Don't worry about it. As long as it stays dark in here, you can't see through the mosquito netting."

They crawled on top of the sleeping bag that Matt had straightened up.

"I was going to get us a root beer. They're floating in water in the cooler!"

"Awh!....That's okay. I don't want to do too much drinkin'......I don't want to have to run to the bathroom every two or three hours!"

Matt lie back, holding his arms out. Tim smiled and lowered his head to his shoulder. It had been done nearly without thought on either of their parts. Matt held his head to his chest with one hand and rubbed his back with the other. Neither felt any shyness or self-consciousness. It had almost become natural. They listened to a distant airplane pass. Some distance down the street a lawnmower ran. In another direction could be heard laughing children. Tim gripped Matt's ribs in his hand.

"...Oh gee, this is just sooo nice. I love these days with this lazy feeling......I don't feel like surfin' on the computer....playin' video games....or doin' anything that doesn't involve holding you!"

"...Yeah. This is nice, just bein' together..."

Matt felt Tim's hand lower to his belly and begin to rub it. He was looking up at him with a comically sly smile. He continued to lower his hand into Matt's shorts.

"...You can do that all you want, Timmy........It won't do no good! Junior's asleep for quite a few hours now and nothing's gonna wake him up!"

"...Just bein' silly with you Matty. It's the same here......I might have hormones but they sure aren't ragin'!"

He slowly moved his head down his chest. He rubbed his belly more. Looking up, he saw Matt with his head back, eyes closed. Tim couldn't resist a grin. He moved his lips over Matt's navel and pressed them down.

"Baaahhh!" Matt yelled.

His thighs shot up as his right hand pushed Tim's head away. With his left hand, he covered his stomach.

"Oh, oh, oh!...Hee,hee,hee"

He looked down at Tim who pointed his finger at him.

"...And don't ever do that to me!..."

"Oh! Oh! Hee,hee......I promise! Ohhhh, do I promise!"

After several more chuckles they lie back together again. They lie in silence for several minutes. Both closed their eyes. Soon Tim's hand slid from Matt's chest to the bag below. Matt's hand stopped rubbing Tim's back and soon slid off.

Within two hours, Matt adjusted his position. He knew he'd fallen asleep but refused to open his eyes right away. It felt too much of an effort. He placed his hand on Tim's lower back.

"I can't quite reach his shorts. Oh, how I'd love to rub his bare ass! Gee, we sure aren't bein' all that shy with each other all of a sudden. Tim even grabbed Junior!....Okay, I know he was just bein' silly but........I wonder if he'd have been more shy if he was serious about it! And he kissed my belly button! Oh! Gee!......I'll never do that to him! As ticklish as he is, he probably will wet his pants!

"I wonder if just coming out to each other had something to do with all this. I'm shy. Tim's even more shy! I can't believe how things have changed so fast! There's gotta be something more to it. I was soooo scared to come out. Shit! I was all scared and nervous when I kept worrying about our first kiss. There was nothing to it!......Whoa! BAD choice of words!......It was great! Better even than my dreams!......It's....it's just we....I don't know....we sorta just knew what to do! Oh, I'll never forget our first kiss! Yeah, it was really hot....but at the same time....ummm....I just kept thinking that my lips were against Tim's! And it was well, kinda sweet to!....All at the same time! I guess there's all sorts of.... umm....things we'll have to go through.

"Oh shit!......Then this morning......Oh, we ummm....got off on each other! Yeah, I was a little shy and embarrassed about that......Yet we never....umm.... planned any of that. It just sorta....happened!......What if we had planned to do that?!......I think I'd have died just trying to talk to him about it!....Why is that?......I'm sure there's gonna be all kinds of....well firsts we'll have to go through. Ohhhh, I sure hope I don't fuck this up!"

It was here that he felt Tim's hand squeeze his ribs again.

"You awake Timmy?..."

"...Yeah. I been awake for a few minutes here. I just didn't wanna move. I was just feelin' your hand on my back. Listening to your heartbeat....Feeling your chest rise as you breathe........I can't believe I'm......I'm holding my little Angel!"

"...Awwhhh! That's so sweet...

"I was just layin' here thinkin'......Remember this morning while we were eating?......You asked me if we just had our....umm....first time? Well, yeah....It was! But our first what? What do we call it? Our first time....gettin' off? That sounds....umm....kinda, well, icky!"

"Hee,hee....Icky?"

"Well?!......Can we call it makin' love?!......I don't think that's exactly right either..."

"Why not?......" Tim replied, still rubbing his chest. He pressed his lips to his breastbone. "When you do it alone it's gettin' off!......When you do it with somebody.... somebody you care about......It's definitely makin' love!......You said that yourself! Remember?!" He squeezed his ribs and kissed his chest again.

"Wow! Yeah!......I see what you're sayin' here......Yeah! And just because one of us isn't a girl, doesn't make any difference!......Well, we do it a bit different but it's sorta the same thing, huh?"

"Well sure, Matty!......It's like you said this morning......We're....umm.... together! It's sorta like were......well, sharing something with each other. You kept....well, kinda backin' off from me. I wanted you to enjoy it too! I wanted to satisfy you too!"

"Yeah....I was holdin' back. I guess I was kind of embarrassed about it. And I'm not tryin' to embarrass you....but when you shouted out Darling! Holy shit! That was it for me! There was no holdin' back after that!......Wow. That was hot!"

"Oh shit! I still feel kinda funny about that..."

"No! No! I'm not trying to do that to you!......It's the word!......Umm.... What are they called now?......Oh! A term of endearment!......I think that's the word I'm looking for. It's like, well, this might sound silly but, it was kinda like you were yelling out you loved me! Wow! Timmy! I'm tellin' you......That was it for me!......I really let go for everything I was worth!"

"Hee,hee......Well, I'm sure glad it was good for you too. It's just, well.... sayin' something like that....It's still a little embarrassing..."

"No! No!....Don't be that way!......I'm tellin' you it was sexy....It was really hot! And, and we just held on to each other so tight!......It was just as good as our first kiss! Wow!"

"You liked our first kiss?"

"Wow! Are you kidding?! Do you even have to ask?!"

"Oh, I sure liked it!......It's just I have such a hard time breathing! Oh! I think I came awful close to just passin' out!..."

He raised his head and looked at Matt.

"You said you like my braces?......Well, I like your tongue! I'd watch you keying your calculator....or concentrating on drawing some diagram. I don't think you even know you're doing it! That skinny, narrow tongue comes out....And the tip!......It kinda curls up....then goes left.... then right. It would give me a stiffy just lookin' at it!"

"Really?!"

"Hell yes!......And when we were kissin'......I was just waiting for it! I mean I could kinda feel it on my teeth 'n' braces......but I wanted to feel it on my tongue! And when I kinda licked at it......Holy shit!......I thought my whole fuckin' head was gonna explode! WOW!"

He placed his head back down.

"Hee,hee....I'm sure glad you liked our first kiss too..."

"Hell yes!......But for me, I think it was well, a kinda relief too. Remember I didn't want you to stop talking?......And kinda as I said, putting the ball in my side of the court. I couldn't do it! I couldn't tell you first!......And with that kiss....It was like....all out in the open! I just felt so great! And for awhile there......I was really scared I was dreamin'! I was soooo scared I was gonna wake up!......I'd really have been pissed!"

"Hee,hee......Come here......With all this talk about kissin'......I need one....Right now!"

"...Only if it comes with a little tongue!"

"...And some shiny, silver braces too!"

Tim held Matt's head tightly as they kissed deeply. Their bodies squirmed together. As Tim rose up higher, Matt slid his hands into his shorts and squeezed his bare bottom.

"Mmmm......Oh Matty, that feels great!......I need more!"

They continued to kiss and squirm for another minute before Tim broke away.

"Oh! Matty!......I just can't explain this! (Puff!) I mean, it's not like I'm even turned on, but I just can't breathe! Oh! And your hands! (Puff)......They're so warm and gentle..."

"Oh!" Matt put in, "That first day I saw you in school. You just looked so hot in those skinny jeans! I had to check out that little round butt of yours! All I could think of was squeezin' it and kissing it!"

"Kissin' my ass?!"

"Well, YES!......Why not?......I'd kiss that all night long!"

"Hee,hee,hee......That's supposed to be an insult to you!"

"Tell me to kiss your ass and see what I do!"

"No! Hee,hee......I can't tell you that! Now were getting silly here!"

They lie in silence for a moment, simply holding each other.

"Oh shit," Matt began, "That just reminded me of some site I read that butt-sex on. Oh! I don't think I'd like that. I think that would hurt! I read where it can cause all kinds of internal damage 'n' stuff."

"Yeah......Me too. But I first saw it on one of those gay porn sites. I didn't click on it. It was some kind of blind link. That just kinda turned me off. That shit is just bad for the whole gay community. Shit, I don't even like any of that straight stuff with the women! Everything's sex! Why can't they have some nice cute love stories or something? I've read a couple, but they're few 'n' far between!"

"...Tim?..."

"Oh, oh!......I don't think I like the serious tone I hear..."

"...No! Nothing like that!...

"Remember when we went into that GSA meeting?"

"Yeah. Sure!"

"Well remember John putting up that notice on the bulletin board about some gay romantic novel?......I went back there to tear off the last strip with the address. You got it, didn't you?"

"You saw me?!"

"Well, not exactly......I was looking around to see if anyone was watching me. And when I turned back....the strip was tore off!......Besides me, you were the only one there!"

"Oh shit, Matty! I didn't want you seeing me do that!......Well, not at the time!...

"I still got the story bookmarked. I'll let you read it, but only off the computer. I'm sure as hell not going to print that out! Holy shit, someone finds that and...

"...Yeah, it's a cute story. There's no sex in it but it's got some hot kissing scenes! I'm sure you'll like it. It's about two klutzes that make us look graceful. Their just cute bungling young boys that sort of come out to each other. In fact I wouldn't even call it sexy. It's just plain cute!......In fact, I'd call it a gay romantic comedy!"

"I think I'd like to read that....Like you say....there sure aren't enough...

"I....ummm....well I was surfin' one night......Lookin' for pictures of cute boys. They had lots of 'em actually......But not exactly what I was looking for. They just didn't have that gay image I was lookin' for. Of course they weren't on a gay site either. In fact I think they're sites that girls would go to. I really didn't want to go to a gay site. They just have these pictures of three or four boys on a bed......And they're doing all this stuff with each other. Ugh! I don't even call it sexy or romantic...

"Well, I kept clickin' links......I got to this one site......Well shit, I don't even remember the name!......I must have had twenty sites open! I guess it was kinda a gay site....but there was no nudity! None of that really sick shit! There was these two boys layin' on the grass next to this lake. They wore jeans 'n' t-shirts......And they were kissin'! And the one on his back kinda had his shirt pulled up. You could see his bare belly. All I could think of was sorta runnin' my hands up it and squeezin' his chest!......It wasn't even nude or sexy! But, wow, it was just kinda hot somehow! I can't explain it...

"Then there was this short video of two boys on a couch. I mean they were dressed and everything......but they were kissin' and makin' out like crazy! And there were a few short vids with those Japanese boy bands in it. Wow! They were all hot and kinda cute! They'd play and sing......I mean it was all in Japanese so you couldn't understand it....But they'd reach those instrumental parts in the number. They'd walk around the stage kissing each other! I mean right on stage!......And the girls out in the audience were just goin' crazy! I think they really liked it!

"Then I tried to click on something else on the site. Shit! My computer kinda locked-up! You know....where no matter what you click on....nothing happens! I had to do a restart! I lost everything! I couldn't find my way back to the site! I was pissed!"

"You can use the history list to get back!"

"...Ummm....not on my computer! I found this free utility somewhere. It automatically deletes the history and does a disk cleanup every time you shut down. I was scared that one day I'd forget to do it! My mom doesn't have a whole lot to do with computers, but I get scared! Wow! If she ever saw some of those sites! I don't mean the medical or biological sites. She's cool with that. She even got me some books about that stuff. It's the other stuff! They wouldn't even have to be nude or anything!......Boys kissin' on the ground or a couch?! Boys walkin' around on a stage kissin' each other?!....with girls watchin'?! Oh! It makes me shiver to think about it!"

Matt felt he suddenly received another signal. Tim's head hadn't moved, yet he felt as though it had. His hand still gripped his ribs, yet there seemed to be a subtle change in finger pressure. He felt Tim's lips gently kiss his neck, yet it had seemed his mind was a bit disconnected and not fully conscious of his action. It was nearly as though he were considering something remote. It seemed he could nearly hear Tim's mind in deep thought.

"...Matt?..."

"...Oh, oh......It's Matt now....not Matty?..."

"...Yeah?"

"...When did you....Ummm....Find out you were gay?..."

Matt could clearly hear several questions within question by the tone of his voice. Tim's arm seemed to slightly tighten around his neck. He could hear the concern in both his tone and minor muscle tension. He rubbed the side of Tim's face as he placed a kiss on top of his head. He stroked his back for a moment, feeling his taut spine relax a bit.

"...Well, I never really did.......ummm....find out! It was something that was just always there!......I didn't just sit down one day and think about it...

"Back in grade school....I guess I always knew!......Well, it's not like I know now! I mean, back in grade school......you don't have the words or the ideas in your mind. You don't really understand what it's all about. You don't know what's going on...

"There were a few kids in my class......boys......that I thought were kinda cute. But it's different back then. I didn't know anything about it being romantic or sexy! I just thought it was a real deep friendship! I never thought of kissing on the mouth!......Well, maybe a cheek. And I thought about lots of cuddling 'n' stuff. But that's as far as it went. I didn't even think of it being love! It didn't really bother me that much. I was shy. I was a loner. As I told you, it didn't really bother me. I'm very comfortable around myself. I hung-out with kids around the school......but the rest of the time, I was alone. I was too shy to talk too much to the other kids. And goin' over to their house to play?!....Shit too!......I'd have to meet their parents! I just wasn't all that sociable. And then when I got into this clumsy geek stage....I didn't wanna be around anyone!

"...Then I turned thirteen and started junior high. Well, around here I don't think it's all that bad as some places. We have a junior and senior high, but it's all in the same building! It would probably feel different if we had different schools here...

"...Well you know how the locker room talk starts. All the boys start talkin' about girls and sex and all that. And there really wasn't much talk about bein' gay either......Well, not until the next year!....Eighth grade it all started!......All the queer 'n' faggot stuff started then. I guess were getting older here and starting to understand the newer terms and ideas. Well, I mean the GSA was already here. We had it lots better than the kids years before us! There was still lots of teasing and nasty name calling....but no real violence. Not with Mr. Emerson in charge!

"...Now he kinda gives me the idea he's okay with the gays. Not just because he doesn't tolerate violence. He doesn't tolerate violence for any reason or against anyone!......I don't know what it really is. He never really came out and said anything specific about gays, but you just seem to get that understanding from him.

"I knew I was gay when I was thirteen!......I read all about it on the Net and everything. It's kinda strange too. I didn't want to be gay!......And I knew I liked boys, but that wasn't the reason!......I didn't care if I liked boys........It was because everyone else had a problem with it! People claimed there was something wrong with me! I didn't wanna be different! I just wanted to be normal!

"Then I found out on the Net......from all those gay friendly sites, that there isn't something wrong!....just different!......It made me feel a little better. I was just still scared what other people would think.

"I think my mom would really throw a fit if she found out......But I'm sure she'd calm down after a bit. It's my dad! Whoa, ho, ho! He just hates faggots! And he sure don't make any secret about it. He makes sure everyone knows!......How they should be shot or hung or just plain set on fire!......That's the only thing that really gets him goin'! Anything else he seems kinda easy goin' and tolerant about...

"Well, now he never really said this stuff with me around. It was times when he never even knew I was around. I'd hear him talking to Mom or his buddies or whatever...

"Timmy!........HE CAN'T EVER FIND OUT ABOUT ME!........I really think he'd KILL me!........That's not a figure of speech, Timmy!........He'd beat the fuckin' shit outta me! I think it would be better if he just shot me! It would be quicker! I wouldn't mind dyin' as much as all the pain I'd have to go through!........You can't say anything to anyone about us!"

Tim rubbed his hand along the side of Matt's face as he kissed his cheek.

"...Nobody's ever gonna hurt my little Angel!"

Matt felt both of Tim's arms twist around his neck as he rested his head on his shoulder again. He seemed to take a deep breath, considering his thoughts and words. He could feel Tim's body tense again.

"...I.....ummm....think I was thirteen too......Maybe even twelve! I don't exactly remember. I mean......this sounds weird, but......I kinda knew but yet I didn't want to know! I really didn't want to be gay. I think I was just refusing to believe it. I was hoping to just sorta grow out of it........I figured it was just a stage I was goin' through. You know....kinda experimenting?........Even though there wasn't anyone around I was experimenting with! I got even more quiet and isolated. Oh shit, I'm not lyin' Matt. When I finally came out to myself.... I sure didn't like it. I was already way too shy and it just complicated things. I was so scared and well....kinda embarrassed too. That first week I did a lot of cryin'. Well, I didn't let anyone know about it...

"...It's kinda strange really........I don't want to tell anyone......Yet at times I almost want to climb a tower and just shout it out!......So everyone can hear it! I just want to be me and not someone everyone else wants me to be...

"I really don't know about my parents........Dad's an engineer......Mom's a doctor. I mean, I've heard them talking about gay issues. They don't seem to be ummm....well, negative about it. I think they kinda know that it's what you are, and there's no choice in it. But they're talking about strangers here. What if I came out to them?......What if they knew I was gay? Would it be that simple and tolerable then? What would Dad's co-workers think? They're mostly ex-navy. What would Mom's patients think?......What if people quit bringing their kids to see her......because they're afraid they might catch something?!...

"...Sound silly, Matty?........Lots of people out there think you can catch bein' gay!........ or learn to be gay. I read on the Net about some woman who didn't want her daughter to see any of that boy-on-boy stuff. She thought it was going to turn her into a lesbian! Just like that girl there in the GSA meeting was talking about. Shit! Lots of people out there don't want their kids on the straight sites!......Like seein' some cocks, or tits 'n' ass are going to just ruin them!......I call it witch hunting! People don't understand it....so they're afraid of it!......I really don't know how my parents would handle that! It's easy when it's someone else's kid!....What if it's your own?!........I mean....I don't think I get the shit kicked outta me!........But why ask for trouble?......You're right Matty......We'd better just keep quiet about it."

They both remained quiet for several minutes. They held each other tightly. Tim would occasionally kiss Matt's neck while Matt would kiss his cheek. It hadn't been intended as anything passionate or even as an advance. It was simply their own unspoken way of consoling each other. Each was in his own thoughts, yet knew the other was as well. Matt had decided to change the subject.

"...When I got here the other day. I kinda helped your dad with the tent some. He said that Mrs. Jenkins had called..."

"...Oh shit! She called like three times during the last couple weeks of school there! She wants him to push me into tutoring next year!"

"...Uhhhh....umm......You know you'd be great at it Timmy!"

"Hell too!........I'd be so nervous, I'd be throwin' up on kid's workbooks! And I'd probably be shittin' my own pants! You know me Matty! I'm just way to shy with being able to do stuff like that!"

"Well, your dad kinda showed me something that day. I was showin' him my new camera. I was so excited about it, that I just kept goin' on 'n' on! He said he noticed when something interested me, I wasn't near as shy as I usually am. I think he's right about that. And when you get into math, you're kinda the same way! You told me those funny stories that helped me to remember stuff. You were really relaxed. We both were! And you know something?......I had fun learning!......I really enjoyed it! Timmy, you'd make a great tutor!"

"Oh Matty!......Please don't start in on that again!..."

"Tim!......You know, it was kinda my fault all this happened....I just couldn't stop telling Mrs. Jenkins how much you helped me! I already told you she thought I cheated and got you to do those worksheets. Wow! I didn't want you gettin' in any trouble over it! I told her you didn't do the sheets......You just showed me how to do 'em! And that's why she gave me that test! And she sat right there to make sure I didn't cheat! And I'll tell you, it was tough! But I only got one wrong!...

"...Shit Timmy! I didn't want all this to happen. I wasn't thinking about all this stuff! But if you want my honest answer......You make a damn good tutor! And you'd make one helluva great teacher! Why don't you just give it a try?......Mrs. Jenkins can select a poor student for you. And I'm sure she'll let me be there with you. We could work together! I could catch up on my math....plus I'd be there with you for kinda support!"

Instantly, Matt felt Tim's body relax a bit. He seemed to nearly breathe a sigh of relief.

"...You'd do that?!....You'd be there with me?"

"Well sure!........And you could tell these kids your silly stories. We could work together and laugh and be silly! Hell! I think it would be fun! Really! Think about it!"

"......Well, I'll think about it....but I'm not making any promises!"

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