The Saturday Boy
Chapter 3 - Confessions and Revelations
"Shaun?" I said quickly, when he answered the phone.
"Oh hey, Joey, what's up?"
"Shaun, it's him, Its Jack Stanton," I babbled.
"Whoa, slow down, who is Jack Stanton?"
"What the fuck…Shaun, Jack Stanton, the guy, the guy from school."
"You mean from the school play last year?"
"Yeah, like how could I forget?"
"Right, so what about him?"
"He's here; he's the one that's…The help, my help…the Saturday boy."
"Oh my god, you have got to be kidding." Shaun said, as I heard him burst out laughing down the phone.
"Shaun, this is not funny, it's a fucking disaster that's what it is."
"Yeah but Joey, it's a funny disaster right?"
"Look, I have to go, God this is fucked up…and will you stop fucking laughing, jeez."
"I'm sorry, I'll stop, ok, well let me know how it goes ok? Man this is so unreal."
"Yeah something like that, I'll call you later, bye."
"Yeah bye, and have fun." I could hear him giggle again as I removed the phone from my ear.
I hung up and dropped my cell on the bed. Desperately trying to compose myself I went back downstairs, I was shaking. Walking through the restaurant I could hear Jack and my dad talking. He was filling him in on what I did here, and how he would be helping me. As I approached them, Jack looked up at me and smiled. My expression stayed serious as I tried to put past thoughts out of my head.
"Joey, I was just telling Jack about what you do here, do you want to take over?"
"Uh, yeah dad, sure." I said nervously. Jack's eyes were fixed on me, making my mouth go dry. I didn't want to swallow as it would give away how uneasy I felt if he saw it.
"I need to go to the wholesaler with your mother so I'll leave you to show Jack around."
My dad left the bar and wet upstairs leaving Jack and me standing in silence.
"Would you like a drink?" I said wanting to break the uncomfortable feeling.
"It's been a long time Joey." He said softly, watching as I went behind the bar.
"I said would you like a drink."
"Yeah, why not, thank you."
"So, why are you here?"
"What do you mean; I'm here for the job. My dad drinks in here, knows your dad apparently. They got talking and your dad told him he was looking for help on Saturdays."
"And you just thought it would be a good idea to offer yourself?"
"Joey, I didn't know this pub was your parent's, honest. I didn't even know who your dad was. I mean, I knew your parents ran a pub, but there are hundreds it could have been."
I sighed. "Yeah, and look what one you ended up in."
"Look if this is going to be a problem I can just go."
"What, and leave my parents to ask me why after asking for help, the minute I get some I make you quit? No thanks. Besides, I really am sick of doing everything myself."
"Well then, I guess we will have to try and make this work."
Jack finished his drink and placed it back on the bar. We hadn't said much to each other in the time it had taken him to consume it, and I thought it was about time I took him down to the cellar to show him what he would be doing.
"If you want to follow me we'll get started." I said, gesturing him to the small door at the end of the bar. "Be careful on the stairs, they are steep and narrow." He followed me as I opened the door and went down. His foot slipped and he had to grab me to stop himself from falling. I shuddered at the contact. Jack touching me was something I never thought would happen…again.
"Sorry, I'm such a clutz."
"I said be careful, you could have broken your neck."
"Something tells me that might have done you a favour," he said grinning. His comment did hold some truth with me.
"Not really, then I'm back to doing this job on my own."
I led him in the main cooling room and switched on the light. "Here, put this on, you'll get cold real quick in here," I remarked, throwing him an insulated coat.
"Wow, it's massive in here." He said, looking round the room.
"Yeah, we do a lot of barrels each week, so we need a big room to keep them all in."
"You got that right, so what should I do?"
"We'll start in a minute, first I wanna talk."
"I think you know." I said, glaring at him.
He did know, I could see it in his face.
I guess I should explain the history here. You see about a year ago, Jack was starring in our school production of Blood Brothers. It was rehearsals and although I wasn't actually in the play, I was there to help with the costume changes, getting the clothes ready for the students. I would bring them up from the store room and take the used ones back down. I didn't really know Jack, only that he was in the same year as me, was in a lot of school plays and was… openly gay.
Anna Day, who I thought fancied me, was there too. She was hot, and I had said a few days previous that I would like to date her. She was sixteen and said that I, who was fifteen at the time, was really cute, and that she would think about it. Anyway, she appeared in the store room while I was sorting through the costumes that were needed for that day's rehearsal and started flirting with me.
I was lapping up the attention like a dog on heat; she was making me hard, coming out with all this stuff she would like to do to me. She then asked me if I would like some head…yeah just like that! It surprised me too. Of course, I said yeah, it was a no brainer with someone like Anna Day.
She said she would do it on one condition, and that was I had to be blindfolded because she didn't want me looking at her while she did it. I was so horny at the time I didn't think it was strange, and thought maybe that was just her thing.
So, I pulled out a tie from one of the stored boxes and wrapped it round my head covering my eyes. I stood there for about one to two minutes, nothing happening. I asked her what was taking so long as she said she was just preparing herself. I then felt her hands on my jeans, tugging at my zipper. She got her hand inside the piss hole of my boxers and pulled my cock out, straight away putting it in her mouth. Except it wasn't her mouth, and I only realised this when I was moaning, and shooting my load in whoever's mouth it was, because as I came, I could hear her giggling, before she whispered in my ear, "was that good for you?"
Horrified that her mouth was near my ear and so my cock was in someone else's mouth, I ripped off the tie and looked down to find Jack fucking Stanton peering up at me, grinning.
To say I was about to have a seizure there and then was an understatement. I zipped myself up and ran all the way home, locking myself away for a week. I missed school claiming that I was ill. Luckily my parents bought it. That was an easy week for me. The hard part has been avoiding Jack Stanton ever since, and although difficult, I have managed it pretty well…until now.
Anyway, back in the cellar he replied to my request.
"So talk," he said, sounding slightly defensive.
"Did you plan it?"
"Plan what?" He replied.
"Cut the bullshit Jack, you know what, the blowjob, did you plan it."
"No…I mean at least I didn't. I just happened to walk in as you were putting a tie round your head. At that time I didn't know what was about to happen."
"Well, she put her finger to her mouth telling me to stay quiet and then waved me over. So I crept over and she motioned for me to suck you off."
"So why did you do it, you know I'm not into…that, with guys I mean."
"You came didn't you?" He declared, smirking. I had no answer to that. "And besides Joey, you're one of the hottest guys in school, how could I turn down an offer like the one she gave me."
"I really don't know what to say Jack, only that it shouldn't have happened, and that bitch betrayed my trust."
"Ok Joey, I understand. Looking back it was a pretty evil thing for her to do, but forget it, it's in the past. Oh, and you really don't need to avoid me anymore."
"Who said I was avoiding you?" I said, turning red.
"And you just asked me to cut the bullshit, jeez Joey. Every time I walk into a corridor you scramble in the opposite direction."
"I just didn't want to have to deal with it Jack, or talk about it."
"So why did you wanna talk about it now?"
"Because it did my head in you being here and I don't think I can go through this every Saturday, knowing what I know, and knowing what you know I know."
"Wow, try saying that when you're drunk. Look, I'm not hung up about this, nor should you be. Let's just forget it ever happened. Anna Day has left our school now and you and I have cleared the air., at least I think we have, if this is what clearing the air is."
"Yeah I guess you're right, I suppose I spent so long avoiding the issue it just escalated in my mind."
"Uh huh, But Joey, just for the record, you have a really big cock, Jesus man!"
"And just for the record Jack, I really hate that you know that."
For the last hour I had been showing Jack round the pub, teaching him how to change barrels, gas and how to set up new real ale caskets. He was a quick learner and I actually found myself enjoying his company. I then taught him about rotation and to swap out empties before we stopped for a drink and breather.
"Want a Coke or something?" I said, leading him back upstairs to the bar.
"Yeah sounds good."
"Cool, after I'll show you how to move the thirty six gallon barrels, they are the back busters, but there is a knack to it.
"Look forward to it," he replied hauling himself on to a bar stool. I went behind and dispensed some Coke into two glasses and placed one in front of him.
"You know, for a gay guy, you don't seem to mind getting your hands dirty."
"What? Fucking hell Cork, you are so stereotypical"
"I'm just saying, you know, you being into Drama and all that. I just thought gay guys were more…"
"Like women? Just stop now Joey, your digging a hole you might not be able to get out of."
"Yeah probably best I do, look I didn't mean to offend, I just never knew anyone who was gay before. I mean yeah, you see it on TV and that probably don't help."
"Some gay guys are Bouncers, lorry drivers, boxers, hell, even builders Joey. We're not all actors and hair dressers you know."
"Hey, I said I'm sorry." He just rolled his eyes and took a gulp of Coke, letting out a huge burp.
"See, we even belch like straight people." The comment made me laugh and threw a towel at him, he grinned.
"I got asked out by a gay guy on holiday actually."
"Really, was he hot?"
"Uh, I don't know Jack, that's not really the way I look at guys, but I guess… yeah he was good looking. Spanish actually, couldn't speak a word of English."
"Um, so how did you know he asked you out then?"
"Oh, one of his friends came and said it for him; we were playing volleyball at the time."
"Well I can't blame him, you are pretty hot yourself."
"Well don't please, it makes me on edge, and I think that your undressing me with your eyes."
"Oh, I've been doing that about three times a week for the last year. But then I've had experience with some bits of you." He stated, chuckling. I turned a nice shade of crimson no doubt, as I spat out my drink.
"Fucking hell, do you really have to bring that up?"
"Just teasing, so this guy, what happened?"
"What do you mean what happened, nothing happened."
"Well I did get this strange note from him actually."
"Yeah it was just as we were leaving the villa. It was pinned to the fence. I mean I hadn't seen him since that day he asked me out, and then I find this note, it was in Spanish."
"Did you work out what it said?"
"Oh yeah, I went on the internet, it just said, I see it in your eyes."
"He sees what in your eyes?"
"That's just it, I don't know."
"Was there anything else with the note?"
"Nope," I replied, putting my empty glass in the washer.
"Hmm, strange. Hey maybe you're a closet case and he could see it." Jack burst out laughing.
Perhaps that was it, I thought. Perhaps he thought I was gay or had gay tendencies and he could see it in my eyes, after all, what else could it be. I actually felt the blood drain from my head as I turned white as a sheet.
"Are you ok?" Jack asked, seeing my complexion change.
"What? Oh yeah, I'm fine. Let's get back to it."
"Hang on I need a piss first, I'll be back in a minute."
"Yeah fine," I replied starting into space.
I see it in your eyes, I repeated over and over in my head. Did gay people have like a sixth sense where they could tell one of their own? "Don't be stupid", I told myself, shaking the thoughts from my mind.
I heard the flush of the toilet and tried to get myself together knowing Jack would be back any second. I obviously didn't do a very good job because he noticed straight away.
"What's up Joey? Ever since we talked about that note you have been looking weird."
"Jack, do I look gay to you?"
He laughed. "Look gay?"
"Yeah, as in if you saw me in the street would you think I was gay?"
"Um, no, I don't think so, but unless you really flaunt it Joey, most people don't look gay." He studied me seriously for a moment. "Is this about the note again?"
"No, I mean sort of, I'm just wondering why the guy would say that."
"Perhaps he was just clutching at straws; I really wouldn't read too much into it."
"Yeah maybe. Anyway let's get back down to the cellar, we open soon and we need to make sure the shelves up here are full before that happens."
Once again I led him down the narrow stairs into the cellar, passing all the bottles until we got to the cooling room. All along the wall on one side were the different lager pumps, each with a gauge and overflow pipe. From here a pipe led to the barrel nearest the wall for that lager.
"You see the Carling and Fosters pumps?" I said, pointing.
"Yeah." He replied.
"They are the two lagers that we order thirty six gallon barrels for, as they sell the most."
"They are also very heavy, here, watch how I move them and then you can have a go."
I went over to one of the full casks and grabbed hold of it. Tilting his so it was balancing on its edge I leant it against my knees and slowly rolled it, moving my body sideways as I went with it. Placing it back down I looked back at Jack.
"Here, now you have a go." He came over and stood in front of the barrel "Now bend your knees and pull it towards you. It will be hard at first until it balances out." He tried to do as I asked but he pulled too much and the barrel fell on its side almost crushing his feet.
"Whoa, that's not good."
"Don't worry, we'll try again." I said, heaving a couple of times until I got it back upright. "Now, get in front of it again and place your hands on the handles." I went up behind him and helped him to steady the barrel. I put my hands on the handles as well and he put his on top of mine. We stood for a moment as I stared at his hands on mine. I pulled away and moved backwards, away from him.
"Everything ok?" he asked, turning back to look at me.
"What were you doing?"
"I'm not like that Jack."
"What are you talking about?"
"I put my hands on yours because yours were in the handles, I hardly think that amounts to me molesting you Joey, Jesus."
"I'm sorry, your right."
"Why are you so edgy around me?"
"I hardly think I need to explain that."
"Joey, it was a year ago, I moved on an hour after it happened, are you telling me you are still hung up about it?"
"No." I snapped, making him flinch. "Look, I have spent a year avoiding you because you…you sucked me off at school damn it, and then you show up here and…and it's just freaked me out a bit ok?" I hissed, getting annoyed that he was so cool about this and I wasn't.
"I said if you wanted, I would leave."
"And I said I didn't want that, you just gotta give me some time to deal with this ok?"
"Sure, but I don't know what I'm supposed to be doing, or what I have actually done wrong."
"you haven't done anything wrong…well you did but…ok look, let's just forget the last five minutes and let's get back to you moving this barrel, we still have to restock the bottles.
We both finished loading the last bottles on to the shelf when my dad came down and said we were about to open. For now, our job was done. The Cellar was clean, the shelves restocked and Jack had had his crash course in the workings of a busy pub.
"You wanna go wash your hands; we are done for the day." I said, as the first customers walked through the door.
"Yeah ok, thanks for today I had a good time."
"You won't be saying that after a few weeks."
"We'll see." He replied, before walking off to the gents' toilets.
"How did he do?" my dad asked, as he walked past me.
"He's good, a quick learner."
"Very broad shoulders for his age, I bet he can chuck those barrels around right?"
"Yeah, he did ok with the barrels in the end, he made it look easy."
"Good, so you gonna keep him?"
"What? I blurted out, wondering what my dad meant."
"I said are you gonna keep him, helping you I mean."
"Oh…oh right, yeah he can stay." I replied, feeling my body relax again.
Jack came back from the toilets and stood next to me, obviously wondering what he should do.
"Jack would you like to have lunch in the restaurant?" My dad asked him.
"Thanks Mr Cork, that would be great."
"Well go and get seated and let the waitress know what you want, the menus are on the table."
"Joey, you wanna join him or are you gonna have lunch upstairs?"
"No, I'll grab something later, I really wanna have a shower and get freshened up. Enjoy your lunch Jack; I'll see you at Six."
"Ok mate, see you later?"
"Yeah I'll be here." I replied, walking off. I walked through the restaurant and back upstairs to the apartment ending up in my room. I got straight on my cell and called Shaun.
"Hey, you busy?" I asked him, as soon as he picked up.
"Not until tonight."
"Yeah me neither, wanna have lunch with me and I'll fill you in."
"Cool, oh and I forgot to ask…the envelope?"
"Yeah I'll tell you about that as well, shall we meet at Donny's burger joint?"
"Sounds good, I'll see you in about an hour, I'll get the tube."
"Yeah ok, gives me a chance to get cleaned and dressed."
"See you soon then."
"Yeah bye," He said, and then hung up.
I went into the bathroom and turned on the shower waiting for the water to get warm. Stripping off I went and stood in front of the mirror searching for my…gayness. I saw nothing. I looked down at my cock thinking about what Jack had remarked at its size. I went to the cabinet on the adjacent wall and pulled out my mum's tailor tape. Getting myself hard, which didn't take long, I placed the tape at the base and measured, curious as to how big I actually was. Hmm, eight and a bit, I thought, making a metal note to look that up on the internet. I went back to the mirror and looked at myself again. I was straight, I had to be, but it bothered me I had doubts, remembering that feeling I got when I listened to dean talk about getting sucked off. Then I went back to the note from the Spanish guy and what he had written. My mind was whirring away trying to find something, anything that would possibly explain what I was. I didn't feel gay, I didn't even feel anything when I looked at Jack, and Jack was a very handsome guy. He had all the classic features of what I imagined a good looking guy would have. He was tall, about six one, a well-defined body, blond hair, blue eyes. He kinda reminded me of one of those Australian surfer types with the floppy hair and ripped body, only he liked acting instead of surfing.
I got in the shower and washed away the grime and stale sweat from my body, hoping that the water would also cleanse my fucked up mind, no such luck. The visit today from Jack Stanton had affected me, perhaps even made me realise that something wasn't quite right inside me. I didn't know what to do with the feelings, all I knew was that I was now fighting myself, this invisible attacker that was, I'm guessing, my subconscious.
I arrived at Donny's and looked around to see if Shaun was inside. If he wasn't, he was running late, because I was already ten minutes late, after colliding verbally with my mother about what time I needed to start tonight. She said five, I said six, she said five again, and I walked out.
I went and found a table and sat down, waving away an eager waitress who was walking towards my table.
"I'm waiting for a friend," I said. She nodded and walked away.
Moments later Shaun arrived through the door and I stood up to let him know I was there. Our eyes met and he smiled, walking over. He looked out of breath.
"Sorry I'm late, I had to go back for my wallet."
"Meh, its ok, I have just this minute got here myself."
"You ok Joey, you look like you have seen a ghost."
"I would describe it as more like another me."
"Forget it, look, do you want a drink?"
"Yeah mineral water please, with ice."
"Sure." I got the waitress's attention and she walked over to us and smiled like they always do when a tip might be in order.
"What's it to be lads?" She asked in a sickly sweet high pitched voice.
"Mineral water for my friend please, with ice, and a can of Red Bull for me."
"Right away Sir." She took down the drink order on her little pad and wandered off to another table.
"Shaun, have you ever measured your dick?"
"Well hello Joey nice to see you too, and thanks for the question," he replied sarcastically, giggling away.
"Yeah sorry, it's not one of the usual of questions to start a conversation, I know, but I'm just curious."
"Joey, that's worrying me, why are you interested in the size of my dick?"
"Because you're the only one I can ask who won't beat me to a pulp."
"Ok, well yeah I have, a few months ago, I was bored.
Shaun let out a laugh "What, you want me to tell you how big my dick is?"
"It's for scientific purposes."
"Well ok…uh, well I'm seven and three quarters."
"Joey for god's sake…yeah hard ok?"
"Do you think you have a big cock?"
"Ok enough Joey this is really freaking me out now."
"I'm sorry; I should have just gone on to the internet."
"What, what's this all about, your sudden fascination with my cock size and yours"
"Jack and I had a conversation today about the episode in the store room at school."
"Right, did you clear the air?"
"Yeah, yeah, he remarked how big I was and I didn't really have any normal people to compare that to. I mean sure you can look at porn movies but that's all either fake or they only got that job because of their size,"
"I see, so?" He said, shrugging
"Well how big are you?
"Eight and a bit inches, hard. What do you think?"
"Joey, if you're really eight something, then my friend, you have absolutely nothing to worry about. That is a big piece of meat that will make a girl scream for more."
"Really, hmm, well thanks, and I'm sorry I know this is a really weird thing to talk to you about, it's just…"
"Hey man, don't worry, so I read, a lot of guys get conscious about their size, but honestly, you're fine."
"Yeah, so, you wanna change the subject?"
"That would be good," he smirked, scratching his head. "So how did today go?"
"Well after I near on shit myself when I saw him I came up and phoned you…"
"Yeah fast forward, I know that bit." He cut me off.
"Ok, well it was…fine, I guess. He's ok, quite normal actually, he did what I asked him to do and that was it.
"That was it? Well how the hell did you get onto the subject of him sucking…well you know."
"That was me, I wanted to get it out in the open, it was eating away at me, you know, him knowing, me knowing and us both not talking about it."
"I see, and you feel better now?"
"Yeah a little, it's gonna take some time for this feeling to wear off but I think it's gonna be ok with him working there."
"What are you gonna tell Dean?"
"Nothing, he doesn't know anything right?"
"Well I haven't said anything…and how long does it take to get a drink around here!"
I called over our waitress who had served us and politely told her we were still waiting. She was apologetic but didn't seem to care all that much. I had noticed she was too busy hanging around two guys on a nearby table. But hey the food is cheap so what the hell.
"Shaun, I think I know what the note means…from the Spanish guy."
"Well Jack said maybe he can see something in me that might suggest I was gay."
"Oh, that's absolutely ridiculous…I mean it is right?"
"I think so."
"What? What do you mean you think so?"
"I dunno, lately, I've just been…"
"Oh Joey please don't come out the closet to me in a burger joint, that would be so corny," he said with a smirk, but at the same time I knew he was serious.
"Shaun, I'm not about to come out to you anytime soon."
"Anytime soon, what does that mean?"
"Oh Jesus, will you stop looking for something that aint there."
"Well what, tell me what this is to you?"
"Does it bother you?"
"In what respect?"
"Say I did come out to you as gay…not that I am." I quickly added. "But just say I did what would you do?"
"I wouldn't do anything."
"Ok, I'm gay."
"Haha, just kidding…see look how you reacted, you would have been so pissed at me if that were true."
"No I wouldn't, it's just, if you came out with it just like that…"
"Yeah I know, it would be hard to take in. Well that's just how I feel about the prospect of coming out to myself, pretty much the same way you feel, you get it now?"
"Look Shaun, I…"
I was interrupted by the waitress bringing our drinks over and thought better than to carry on my conversation with Shaun, what with the current topic we were on.
"Here you go lads, sorry for the wait. Would you like to order?"
"Uh, yeah, I'll have a classic cheese, with fries please." I said, not bothering to look at the menu.
"Yeah, and I'll have the king rib, coleslaw and wedges please."
"No problem, help yourself to salad from the salad bar." The waitress walked away and left us to our conversation.
"You were saying?" Shaun said trying to get us back on track.
"Oh right, yeah, so…look I'm not about to come out of the closet or anything like that. It's just I have noticed a few things recently that…I dunno, just things, in myself."
"What sort of things?"
"It's hard to explain, when I think of them separately they're nothing, but when I think about them all together it's just a bit freaky."
"So list them and then I can be the judge of whether you are bordering on gayness," He replied, doing his classic Shaun giggle.
"If you are just gonna make fun of me I'm not saying anymore, I'm already feeling spooked by all this." I said, getting frustrated.
"You have my full attention, now shoot." A sly grin started to form on his face.
"Sorry, not shoot, I mean…well just tell me, I promise not to laugh."
"Yeah right, ok well, On holiday when Dean was talking about his conquests with girls, it made me horny, sort of, not like hard dick horny, just a little stirring down below, and I couldn't work out whether it was Dean himself that was making it happen."
"Joey, I did get hard with Dean's stories, he hardly leaves any details out. So, next."
"Right ok, well the Spanish guy said he could see it in my eyes. Why would he say that? Just for fun?"
"I don't know what he meant Joey, but look at the damn facts. He's a gay kid who had the hots for you, he's never seen you before in his life, and he didn't look like a fucking Clairvoyant. Next!"
I let out a long sigh "And then…"
"And then what?" Shaun asked, willing me to continue.
"Joey, tell me or I'm gonna beat it out of you."
"We were in the cellar."
"You and Jack?"
"Yeah, and I was teaching him to move a barrel around, you know the big ones we have, and I had my hands in the handles and he placed his on top of mine."
"Sorry, what's your point here?"
"I pulled away."
"As you would."
"Yeah as I would."
"And part of me wanted him to leave them there OK, there I said it." I blurted out quickly, my voice elevated. People looked round but I don't think they could really pick up what I was talking about. Shaun sat silent, staring at the floor, not having yet responded.
"Wow, you really saved the best until last Joey."
"Yeah, I guess I did. So, you have an explanation for that?"
"Fuck Joey!" He said, shaking his head, before putting it in his hands. I glanced up and saw the waitress approaching our table. Following her to our table with my eyes she set the plates down and asked if we wanted more drinks, I declined, just wanting to get rid of her. She walked away and I was back glued to Shaun's expression. It didn't look good.
"Give me a minute Joey will you?"
"So what does this mean," he asked raising his head. "What are you telling me here?"
"Exactly what it is, I don't know. I'm finding it hard to explain any of it really, I'm just saying it as I see it. I told you something was not quite right, you know the way I felt, and you dismissed it."
"Yeah, until you said you enjoyed having another guy touch you."
"It may not mean anything."
"What, you mean it might just be a phase or something, C'mon Joey, give me something concrete here."
"Fuck Shaun, I need your support right now, not you berating me over this." I was starting to get annoyed. Probably more with me than him because I could not for the life of me find the words to explain the feeling, the mood, the fucking situation, what was in my head. I wanted to drill it open and pull out the parasite that was my confusion right now.
"Ok, time out, time out." Shaun said, sighing.
"You're right, I'm sorry. I know what I should have done, I should have kept this to my fucking self and dealt with it."
"No Joey, its fine, I'm not pissed off ok? Look, I don't care, really I don't. Shocked about what you just said, yes. But I don't care if you think you might be gay, bi or whatever. And you're right, I should be supporting you, that's what best pals do right, thick and thin and all that shit?"
"Now let's eat, I'm starving and you have worn me out." That magic smile came back to his face and it told me everything was cool between us. It was very rare for Shaun to get annoyed, but when he did, he meant business.
We finished our food and split the bill fifty fifty, leaving the waitress a small tip for her average service. Shaun held the door for me and we exited the greasy joint, standing just outside.
"Perhaps your Spanish mind reader was right Joey, perhaps you are a little different, but I'll always back you ok. But I would strongly advise against mentioning this to Dean."
"I do value my life Shaun, I'm not that stupid." I replied, squeezing his shoulder.
"So are you still going out with Dean tonight?"
"Planning on it, but we'll wait and see that movie another time, I know you wanna see it. Maybe we'll go bowling or something, Dean can perv over the pussy now that Melissa has ditched him.
"Oh yeah, I forgot about that bitch, I always said she was a psycho. Did he end up fucking her?"
"He said he did, but you know Dean, probably trying to save his pride."
"So, um, are we good?"
"Yeah Joey, we'll always be good. That is unless you tell me you're into animals or something like that."
"Oh trust me; the fur would be an issue."
"Right well I'm gonna get off then, keep me posted about you know who."
"Yeah will do, I think I'm just gonna take this as a blip and forget about it, as my mum would say, it's just my hormones."
"Whatever Joey, as long as you're happy dude, just go with it."
"Yeah, well I'll see you soon then, I'm gonna grab the tube back."
"Ok pal, see you later," Shaun said, waving, and we both walked away in opposite directions.
I began walking back to the underground station, my hands in my pocket. I was in a reflective mood, with a tinge of relief thrown in. Shaun was such a cool person, such a nice gentle person. You really don't get that very often, a sort of high school Jock, built like one, but had such a soft side which was almost tangible.
I was always the sensitive one in our group. I guess you could say I was the polar opposite to Dean, with Shaun resting in the middle keeping the balance. But strangely our friendships worked so well, none of us could imagine life without the other. Yeah I know, that's kind of slushy and pukey, but after my revelation to Shaun, admitting I loved my friends was a piece of cake.
I trotted down the stairs, onto the platform edge, feeling a little lighter. Heaviness would soon return though when I had to face Jack Stanton again for our evening shift at the pub. I even wondered whether he would turn up, if he really didn't have a clue I lived there.
I wondered how he felt in all this. He seemed to put on a good show that he was over what happened, but how over it, I mused. I felt sorry for him in a way, not really knowing why, because I hardly knew him. Did he have a family? If he did they never came to his shows, well not that I saw anyway. Did he have a boyfriend; did he even have any friends? I had spent so long avoiding him I never knew anything about this boy, only that he was the one who left me mortified one afternoon at school. I remember that feeling being worse than anything I had ever experienced before. It was a feeling of being utterly out of control, like a plane spinning to the ground because its wings had been ripped off.
My train turned up and I hopped on taking a seat next to an old woman reading the paper, looking over I read the page she was on to take away the boredom of my journey back, it was six stops.
I arrived at my home station and ran up the stairs two at a time, I was busting for a piss and it was making my stomach hurt. I stood at the road side and pressed the button to cross the road, the fucking red man seemingly staring at me for an eternity. Mr Green man lit up and I pelted it all the way back to the pub, bursting through the double doors like some cowboy in an old western, except the only weapon I had was my bladder in the form of a bomb waiting to go off.
Not bothering to go upstairs I ran into the customer toilets and let out an audible groan as gravity let loose my pent up fluid. Before I flushed and washed my hands I took a quick look at the blister on my cock, it had all but disappeared and I planned to treat myself to a fucking good jerk off at some point tonight. I had a date with my dick and I wasn't about to be late.
Leaving the toilet I went to the bar and greeted my mum who was darting around trying to get waiting customers seen to.
"Where is dad?" I asked my mum.
"Restaurant, Shelly called in sick."
"Yeah again, but she won't be doing it again."
"Why not, is she better?"
"Nope, she's fired."
"No loss there then." I said, chuckling.
"Do mummy a favour and collect some glasses I can't get out from behind here."
"How useful I am to you, what's it worth?"
"You still want those new sneakers don't you, the Adidas ones."
"I'll get collecting."
The bar was really busy and the restaurant looked fully booked too. With Shelly sick I was guessing my dad was out in the kitchen helping the head chef prepare everything, probably tearing his hair out as he went. Saturdays at the Hungry Hog were always manic and when a member of staff went sick, manic became chaos.
"Hey Joey, how ya doing son."
"Ahh hey Mr Willis, yeah I'm good, nice to see you." He looked like he wanted me to stop so he could talk to me, but over the last couple of years I had mastered the art of slipping away from talkative customers without offending them, Mr Willis being one of the easier ones, due to the fact he was nearly always drunk by time he got here.
With two armfuls of glasses I gently headed back to the bar and put them on top, gliding my way between groups of people drinking I got behind and went to the glass washer and started loading.
"You know how much a bag of ice is?" My mum asked running past me to the nearest Carling pump.
"One pound seventy nine. One pound bloody seventy nine for f'ing frozen water. If I ever find the CEO of the company that makes it I will personally cut his dick off.
"I take it you finally broke the ice machine then." I remarked as she rushed passed me again, this time for soda water.
"Stupid old thing, I keep telling your dad we need a new one and he just keeps trying to get this one repaired, it's had it, it's as simple as that."
"Just buy one yourself then and tell him afterwards."
"Oh honey, you know he would divorce me if I did that."
"Hey lady, how about a drink here," some wanker shouted. As much as my mum annoyed me, when customers were rude to her it grated on me.
"Hey Mister, we are a little busy here if you hadn't noticed, now wait your turn." She shouted back at him. Being such a popular establishment, mum had taken the view that we could pick and choose our customers. The old bastard that shouted at her would be making his last visit here if I knew my mum.
"You want me to serve?"
"Yeah but don't touch the till, otherwise I we could lose our licence." She said, gesturing me to the next customer.
"Yeah I got it, I'll tell you what to ring in." I went over and stood in front of a man holding flicking a twenty pound note in front of me."
"Yes sir what can I get you."
"Two lagers, one glass of Chardonnay and a Coke please," replied the man shouting above the noise. I went and got started on his order, adding up the drinks in my head as I went. I heard the doors open and looked up seeing another fifteen or so people come in. This was getting ridiculous, I thought as customers were now two deep at the bar trying to get served. I got back to the man I was dealing with and placed his final drink on the counter and took his money. My mum came past the till and I shouted the total in her ear, she rang it up and gave me the change before walking off to serve the next customer.
My mum was a trooper, she could do this all day long without breaking into a sweat. Me? Well I just started to panic. It's no fun when you have people screaming at you because they have had to wait to be served, even though every other fucker is waiting and its busy. You have about seventy people in the pub and just me and my mum serving. It don't take a fucking rocket scientist to realise that there could be a little bit of a wait, but no, everyone wants to be served now now now!
We were running out of bottles of beer and one pump had already gone on the carling line. I had to make a choice, either see how far we got on one pump and fuck the bottles, or leave my mum on her own while I went down to the cellar and put a new barrel on, plus bring up more bottles.
Thinking of profit as I was always taught, I left my mum in the warzone and hurried down, ripping off the line to the dry barrel and replacing it on a full one, froth splashing all over me. I ran round the bottle room and chucked a load of lager bottles into a crate and ran back upstairs, hastily putting them in the rapidly emptying fridges.
"Joey, we are running low on glasses, canyou go and hoover some up?" My mum asked, banging an new bag of ice on the side trying to separate the stuck together cubes.
"You want me to leave you here on your own?"
"Well if you don't what is everyone gonna drink out of?" she replied, her comment stinking of sarcasm. Just as I thought I was about to go into melt down I caught a glimpse out the corner of my eye, a tall messy blond lad coming through the door.
Jack Fucking Stanton, my saviour
He came to the end of the bar and stood there smiling at me. "What are you doing here you're not due until six…in fact who cares, tell me later. Wanna earn some extra cash?"
"Is the pope Catholic?"
"I'll take that as a yes."
"What can I do?"
"Can you collect glasses?"
"No jack, the ones the customers are still drinking from…of course empty ones."
"Well, what are you waiting for?" I said waving him away. He got straight to work bringing back stacks of glasses, as I loaded them into the washer. I could see light at the end of the tunnel when Christie, our favourite barmaid walked into the pub. She wasn't supposed to start until five but taking one look at my mum and me she got straight to work and took up the slack.
People were no longer having to wait, and I started to breathe easier. The constant shouting for service had stopped and the glasses were being replenished faster than they were being used. We had got through it, fuck knows how, but we did. I was sweating and probably stunk, my teenage body excreting what teenage bodies' do, pungent sweat mixed with grease. Yeah lovely I'm sure you agree.
I left the bar and went to see how my dad was doing. In contrast to the bar everything seemed to be under control and he was in good spirits. The restaurant was always a little easier to handle because people expected to wait a while for their food when it was busy. The Bar though, man that was a different matter and it seemed the more they drunk they got the more impatient they got.
"Christie is here dad, she started early, I need to shower so I'm going up. Oh, and Jack is here helping with the glasses."
"Ok son, no problem," he replied taking a prawn starter out, it looked really good.
Jack met me at the entrance to the upstairs apartment just before I went up and asked me what to do.
"Just keep the empties coming in then take a break. I'll sort out some extra pay when my dad gets some relief in to cover."
"Ok Joey, thanks, so where are you off to?"
"Shower, I stink."
"Well I didn't wanna say anything."
I laughed. "Yeah thanks, I'm sure it smells great."
"So you'll be down soon?"
"Yeah give me twenty minutes."
"It's a date then,"
I glared at him wondering if the meaning was meant as I expected. "You wish," I said teasingly, then immediately felt embarrassed by my comment. I didn't give him a chance to respond as I ran up the stairs and out of sight.
Fucking Jack Stanton!
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