Age of Discovering

by Rick Beck

Chapter 4

Girl Friend

I had school, I had my band, and I had a car if I had gas money. I didn't need to fall in love. I can honestly say, I don't know what that means. Falling into it sounded dangerous. I'd avoid open pits whenever possible, but I I couldn't avoid Glenn.

Girls were easy. I could talk to girls. From my experience, girls were smarter than boys and way easier to understand. It didn't take much energy to be friends with a girl, because most of them were more mature than boys.

For me, liking girls was an intellectual exercise. I liked serious girls. I didn't care for girls who were all about looking for a boy to take them to the next dance.

I didn't go to dances unless my band was playing. I'd go to a dance to dance, when I could bring another boy and not start a fist fight.

I could be friendly and good company without stringing a girl along in order to be able to say I had a girlfriend. Neither one of us would get the full benefit from a friendship like that. I had no desire to be in that kind of relationship in order to please people I didn't like and had no relationship with.

But this was the question I feared being asked for most of my high school days.

'You don't have a girlfriend?'

My answer had always been, 'Of course I have girls who are my friends.' I did, even if it wasn't what they were asking me.

At seventeen I wasn't going to rush into anything. A boy like Glenn had no reason to want to be my friend. I'd rather he liked me because I was me. There were five hundred boys at school and I didn't care if any of them liked me.

Maybe it was all hormones. What I'd been able to avoid around the boys I'd always known, I couldn't avoid, once I met Glenn.

Time was running out on high school. I didn't need this now. I made up my mind to avoid Glenn from now on. It wasn't the first time I vowed to avoid him, and this vow would go the way of my last two vows to stay away from him.

He was catnip.

I was the cat.

Eddie lived two blocks over from me and I decided to skip out of band practice after school and see if Glenn and Eddie walked home together. There was no problem running into Eddie.

We ran into each other a couple times a week on the path that led us out of Gravel Pit Heights to hear the high school. By racing to the path after school, I'd accidentally run into Eddie.

I left school right after the dismissal bell rang. Once I reached the path, I tied my shoes, after I untied my shoes. I took my time untying them next time. I tied them again even slower.

Eddie usually came right home from school. What if he was going to Glenn's. I didn't think of that until I began wearing out my shoestrings. They might never come. Maybe Glenn didn't go to Eddie's after school? Eddie would be coming home and when he did, I'd pump him for information about Glenn.

As I spaced out about what ifs, Eddie and Glenn turned onto the path.

"Hey, Gordon," Eddie said, coming up short.

"Oh, hi. You heading home, Eddie?" I asked, while finishing up the shoe tying routine.

"We're going over to Glenn's to play some computer games. He's got some neat pictures on his computer," Eddie said.

"You live near Eddie?" I asked Glenn, not wasting any time figuring out where to find him.

"Behind him. My backyard is one yard over from his backyard. You want the address?" Glenn asked sarcastically. "I can give you my phone number."

"What would I do with it?" I asked, confused.

"You obviously are interested in where I live. I'll write the address down for you. It's not a big deal. If I write my phone number down, you can call me if you get lost."

"I guess," I said. "You always so friendly? You're a new guy. I know everyone at school. I know where a lot of boys live."

"You wanted to know and I told you," Glenn said. "Wouldn't want you to get lost. I can draw a map but it's right behind Eddie's house and one house to the right."

I should have known he lived close to Eddie. I bet they met on the path going to school.

"Funny running into you on the way home," Glenn said. "You ask to get on the volley ball pit dig?"

"They told me to put my name on the list. If they need me they call me out of gym class," I said.

"Cool!" Glenn said.

I walked a little behind them and became aware of how Glenn filled out his jeans. His shirt was tucked in this time and the back of his jeans were tightly packed.

He was an inch or two taller than me but his build beat mine by a mile. I wanted to be more muscular. I needed to gain a few pounds. It was easier said than done.

"See you later, Gordon," Eddie said, as they turned toward Glenn's house.

"I'll see you guys later," I said, watching them walk away.

Glenn had nothing to add. I wasn't asked to join them. That left my imagination free to wonder why.

I was disappointed, because I couldn't wait there everyday. I'd had one shot and I blew it. They had become friends and they didn't need me hanging around. I'd go back to my after school activities and put any thoughts of Glenn on hold.

I left my books at my house, grabbed an apple off the table, and I headed back to school.

I'd missed half an hour of our allotted hour and a half for the use of the band rooms. I got royally booed by the guys. So much for my lecture on professionalism. I wasn't above being criticized.

I eased into the set where they'd left off when I came in. I knew each set by heart. We were immediately together and ripping it up. This was how music was meant to be played.

Richie played a bad guitar, as in not good. He was an average keyboardist. His voice and looks made him a hit, which made the six songs he wanted to sing, had to be learned.

My band mates did some grumbling but once I got Richie to sing one of his songs he had us learn, the complaints stopped. We weren't dumping Richie.

Richie was a distraction when it came to our music. I mentioned that we'd done the singing on a few songs, but none of us were in Richie's league. We'd once had a keyboardist. He added depth to our sound. He graduated and we were still searching for a replacement who could work with us.

Bands changed along with the music they played. Musicians came and went. The only way a band survived was to adapt. Richie would toot his own horn, which was now our horn. He'd tell girls where to go to hear him sing.

My band mates wanted to tell him where to go.

I put Glenn out of my mind, again, while I was at band practice. I had my priorities straight. My music came first, but I did wonder what he and Eddie were doing, while I walked home after band practice.

Once home, while eating an apple, I relived the shower scene with Glenn and Eddie appearing to me quite vividly.

"You all right?" my father asked. "I've called you twice to come to the dinner table. That's not like you when food is concerned."

"Oh, I'm OK. I guess I was day dreaming."

"Come on to dinner and finish daydreaming later," he said. "Don't let your dinner get cold."

I wasn't sure I was hungry. I needed to get over Glenn or I might starve. I manage to polish off two plates full and I fought off starvation for another day.

I wondering if I was addicted to food.

Revisiting the sexual innuendo surrounding Glenn's comments left me with vivid fantasies involving him and me. My life would have been far easier if I never met Glenn.

I wondered if I'd see him again.

Being attracted to someone created hours of wasted time planning how I'd get his attention and what we'd do once I got it. None of the plans included where we'd meet and how. The accidental meeting with him walking Eddie home led nowhere.

I'd just keep my mind off him and go about my business. I had a lot to do. Between school, homework, term papers and finals, I had plenty on my plate. There was also band practice and the party we'd play next Friday evening.

I saw Eddie a few times and we chatted in the halls at school, but Glenn's name didn't come up. I didn't see them together in gym class. Once or twice I ended up with my gym locker close to Eddie's. I made a point of getting a closer look at his body.

He was as tight and muscular as ever. The well built twelve year old had grown, developed, and was a fine example of a senior boy who kept fit but didn't mind reverting back to adolescent behavior when confronted with a boy of a similar mind.

At five ten and a hundred and forty-five pounds I wasn't muscular. Next to Eddie, I was a bean pole.

Looking at myself in a mirror, I was properly proportioned. My head wasn't too big for my body and neither were my feet. I wasn't muscular or handsome, when I tried to imagine what Glenn saw when he looked at me.

Girls called me cute. Boys ignored me, except for the boys in my band. Glenn had ignored me for the most part. The attention he gave me was odd and disjointed. It was difficult to read any meaning in it.

I meant to ask Eddie if he still attended Mrs. Fisher's Dance Emporium, but I never got around to it. Eddie spoke of Bonnie, who he'd been dating most of the school year. He introduced me to Bonnie at a dance my band played. Eddie liked that I had a band.

School had grown too large to know everyone's name. Bonnie altered my way of thinking about Eddie and Glenn. I considered the idea there was no Eddie and Glenn.

They were two testosterone filled boys in the same gym class and their frequent physical contact was how they reacted to one another after coming together.

I wasn't sure I believed that , because Eddie had never done anything or said something to make me think he was on the hunt and gender wasn't an issue.

Then there was Glenn. I had no trouble thinking a lot of boys would like a go at him. He wasn't merely handsome. He had a well defined body that few boys had.

Now I understood that these things could get a lot of boys picked on, singled out, and bullied for looking the way he did, but Glenn also had an in your face attitude. He didn't fear looking a boy in the eye and telling him what he thought. He'd looked me in the eye a couple of times.

There was no give in his demeanor. I could believe Glenn had more than one fight over his attitude. Since this was the attitude he came with, I doubted he'd been beaten down for it.

Glenn was like no one I knew and I wanted to get to know him. I simply had no luck in tracking him down. We were rarely in the same place at the same time and time was running out.

The dreams I had weren't consistent with what I knew about Glenn. I remembered Glenn's reaction to Eddie, when they were wrestling in the showers. I didn't think most guys would react that way, unless there was some excitement to the activity. Eddie's ass might be enough to give a boy an erection if he was rubbing up against it.

Picturing him out in front of the Five & Dime, bragging about his endowment, Glenn may not have been boinking Eddie but he was a tease and he was without shame.

Glenn took pride in bringing attention to his endowment. It was sexual and meant to be tantalizing. He made no apology for embarrassing other boys.

I feared my over active imagination put Eddie and Glenn together. I suppose I wanted to believe they were fooling around, so I'd think Glenn wasn't beyond fooling around.

The only evidence I had was how comfortable they were having physical contact with one another. They both got something out of that contact. They could be two boys who simply liked wrestling naked.

Spring was in full bloom and it was April the next time I ran into Glenn. Thoughts of him had faded a bit. I didn't think about him every day. Crash into him might have been more accurate.

I took the long way home to go past the lake in the old gravel pit. Most of the houses in my subdivision were built on where the gravel pit once was, but a few dozen acres remained untamed by developers yet.

The lake, once at the center of the old gravel pit. Had been reclaimed by nature. Trees were growing. Shrubs and grass came right up to the banks of the lake now.

It wasn't totally reclaimed. You could see piles of gravel that had been covered by dirt over the years. This created hills that bike riders couldn't resist. The dirt had completely covered the piles of gravel over the years. That created the small hills.

Usually, after school, the gravel pit was a quiet relaxing place I liked to go. I enjoyed sitting on the grass by the edge of the lake. Most days there was little activity there.

As I walked around to the gravel pit side of the lake, a half dozen boys were racing their bikes up and down the hills. This created dust which moved more dirt around. There were tire grooves in the middle of each hill from the wheels of the bicycles.

I stood to watch the collection of riders competing for superiority. The four older boys left two younger boys in the dust. These four jockeyed for position. At each hill they had to go single file to go over the hills. This meant a considerable amount of jostling and bumping as the bike trail narrowed to where only one bike could fit in the track leading over a hill.

In the middle of the madness, I saw Glenn. The bikes jostled and bumped each other as Glenn nosed out the other riders when they came to each hill.

Laughing, taunts, and conversation went with the bumping and banging. The bikes appeared and disappeared, racing over and around the hills.

After losing sight of the racers for a couple of minutes, I stretched to see if I could spot Glenn. About that time a bike came skidding up sideways, nearly knocking me down.

"Hi yeah, Gordo," Glenn said happily.

"You're quite crazy, you know?" I told him, after getting over him nearly scaring me to death. "You trying to break your neck?"

"I've often been accused of such a thing," he said. "I'm just having a good time. Breaking my neck in the pursuit of fun wouldn't be a vice where I come from."

"Come on, Glenn. We're going to jump the gap," one boy yelled.

Two of the bikers were farm boys from across Old Highway. I didn't recognize the third boy.

"Got to go. I've got to show them how to jump bikes. You can come and watch if you want. I'm good at it."

"So you've told me," I said.

I didn't want to appear too anxious. I thought of how transparent I was. Glenn could see right through me.

He looked different. His jeans were old and worn. His shirt was a light flannel. There was a rip in one elbow. It hung open revealing a sweaty soiled tee shirt underneath.

I walked past a few hills to find the bikers sitting at the bottom of one of the bigger hills. There was some kind of a discussion going on that concerned that particular hill. It wasn't much different from the other hills, except for its size and the fact that the middle of the hill had been cut away, making it into two half hills with a four foot wide gap between them.

The one side of the hill had a trail that bikes made. It slanted upward at a sharp angle until it reached the divide. One of the guys biked away, peddling for all he was worth before turning back to race toward the hill had on, speeding up the slope toward the split, slamming on his brakes just before he reached the gap.

After the first boy retreated, there was some laughter, and another boy broke away, circling around and then, after picking up speed, he charged straight toward the hill. Once again the brakes stopped the bike's forward momentum, leaving the boy staring into the abyss.

It wasn't apparent to me right away, but after the second boy stopped short. I figured they intended to jump the gap and the first two riders didn't gain enough speed to accomplish the feat.

Another boy made an aggressive approach, swinging wide around the hill at the last instant. When Glenn came free of the cluster of bikers, he swung a wide arch and he charging at the hill.

I worked my way to where the action was. I watched from beside the hill. I stood in the dry stream bed that cut the hill in half. I was in position to see the bikes as they reached the incline and started up the hill.

Glenn came up the makeshift ramp toward the split. I waited for him to brake, but he didn't brake. He lifted off the lip of the incline with his front wheel up and his rear wheel dangling behind. He came down on the far side of the hill.

He made the jump.

It looked good until the front wheel began turning to the right. Glenn was still going straight ahead. He achieved lift off from the bike seat, sliding two thirds of the way down the hill on his left side.

Ouch! That had to hurt.

The bike continued on to the bottom of the hill sliding off to the right and away from Glenn. I raced to his side. The boys on bikes were racing to see what became of the disappearing biker, one running up to the split to look over to where Glenn landed.

Glenn lay completely still with dust still in the air around him. I knelt beside the lifeless Glenn, touching his right shoulder. He rolled onto his back and he was all smiles.

"How'd I know it would be you, Gordo? Did you see that jump I just made?"

"You made it all right."

"Am I dead?" he laughed happily. "You must be an angel then. Beam me up Scotty."

"He's all right," the boy looking down the hill at us said.

"Man, did you see that?" someone else said amazed.

"He's crazy," another boy said.

I thought he might have something there.

Glenn stood up looking at his left side. He slid most of the way down the hill on it. I could see through the rip in his jeans, his knee was bleeding. I could see blood through the rip in the elbow of his shirt. It had to hurt but he walked over to his bike to look at how the handlebars were no longer centered on the front wheel.

It was fine if he only wanted to make right turns.

"Needs some work, huh? It's my brother's bike. He should take better care of it."

"Oh, good thing you didn't wreck your bike," I said.

"Damn," Glenn said, letting the bike fall back down as he looked at the scrape on the side of his hand. "Maybe I need gloves the next time. A guy goes out for a harmless bike ride and comes back looking like Evel Knievel."

"Evil who?" I asked.

"Never mind. You had to be there."

"I guess," I said. "Your elbow!"

"Yeah, we maybe ought to take a look see, huh, Gordo?"

Glenn eased the shirt off his shoulders. I took a hold of the collar for some reason and he twirled out of it.

"That's going to sting when I put alcohol on it."

He lifted up his shirt and there were scrapes down his side to the top of his pants.

"Stings," Glenn said, as he surveyed the damage.

"Why'd you do that?" I asked, wondering what would make a kid like Glenn do something that stupid.

"It was a bet. By the way those guys disappeared I apparently won."

"What did you bet?"

"Not something I'm going to talk about to a guy like you, Gordo."

"Something sexual?"

"Of course. What else do you bet with teenage boys? We live to humiliate each other."

"You're almost grown," I said.

"Don't tell them. They think I'm one of them. I wouldn't want to be exposed," he said, giving me an evil grin. "Check that. I wouldn't want them to know I'm not sixteen. I'm not sure they'd play with me if they knew how old i was and then I wouldn't be able to corrupt their morals."

"You're in senior gym class. You've got to be close to eighteen," I calculated. "I am."

"Next month. They don't know I'm a senior. They just think I'm another crazy boy."

"But you are. What are you going to tell your brother about his bike?"

"He knows better than to lend it out," Glenn said. "I keep telling him not to let other boys ride it. They never take care of it."

He picked the bike up by the handlebars to look at the damage.

"You asked if you could borrow his bike to do this?" I asked.

"You kidding me. This isn't the first time I wrecked his bike. He wouldn't lend it to me on a bet."

"You're hopeless," I said.

"I needed a bike. Mine got mangled in my last wreck. He wasn't using his and here we are."

"I don't know why I want to know you. You're a mess," I said.

"Yes! Maybe you can save me from myself. I don't have good sense. I don't have any friends."

"What about Eddie?" I asked.

"He likes to wrestle and so do I. He comes to my house to watch porn. He can't watch it at his house. Makes my house a warm and inviting place where a horny boy can jack off in privacy. Except for me being there to offer tips and grade his technique."

"What does he do when you comment on his masturbation technique?" I asked.

"I told you, he likes to wrestle. The first time he came over, we'd just met on the path on the way home. I had no idea what a stud Eddie is. I invited him over to watch porn with me."

"You didn't know him?" I asked.

"Nope. I like company when I jack-off. I didn't know anybody. You got to start somewhere."

"What happened?" I asked.

"You just want to hear a dirty story. OK! He asked me if I was serious. I was. We went to my house, which is right behind his house. I turned on the porn so it would flip pictures every ten seconds. I started taking off my clothes. He wanted to know what I was doing. I told him it was better than getting my sperm on my clothes. He undressed. Eddie's not a big guy but he has one hell of a body. I hadn't expected it. Let the games begin," he said, feeling his crotch as he walked with the front wheel of his bike off the ground.

"He took his clothes off?" I asked.

"It's hard to keep Eddie in his clothes. Half the times he is undressing before we go into my bedroom. He likes showing people his body."

"You were going to tell me what happened when you talked about Eddie jacking off."

"I told you. He started with the wrestling deal."

"Naked?" I asked.

"Naked! You ever rubbed your hard dick against another boy's hard dick?" Glenn asked.

"No!" I said.

"You ought to try it sometime. I was on my bed working on the degree of excitement I could achieve before getting off. I suggested how he could make it more intense. The second time I made a suggestion, he came off the chair and jumped on top of me to wrestle. He was laughing so I knew we were cool."

"He was jerking off and he jumped you? It's hard to see Eddie doing that," I said, remembering him at dance class.

"Never go to Germany. Boys there wrestle naked and think nothing of it."

"Boys?" I asked.

"There were three boys I wrestled with in Germany."


"Isn't that what we're talking about. I'm confused," Glenn said.

"That's a pretty specific number," I said. "That's a lot of boys doing something I've never imagined doing."

"They wrestled naked a long time before I showed up. I saw them and I joined in."

"You did?" I asked.

"They invited me to wrestle with them. I didn't know they stripped off to wrestle. It's different over there. People aren't up tight about being naked or seeing people naked. They're under the impression that everyone has a body and seeing one isn't traumatic "

"It's not? What did Eddie do?" I asked.

"I cannot tell a lie. What do you think he did? I rubbed my dick on his and he rubbed his dick on mine. He took like a minute and a half to get off. The boy does get intense when his magic moment arrives," Glenn said. "Of course when I began giving him tips, he was already breathing heavy. He was surprised he got off while we wrestled. Not what he expected."

"What did he say afterward?" I asked.

"He said he didn't expect it to excite him that much. Wrestling while being hot and horny. When he decided to wrestle, he wanted to prove he wasn't as lame as I made him feel. When he shot off so fast, it made him feel more lame. I tried to explain it to him."

"Eddie did that?" I asked.

"Yes, he did. I told him being hot and bothered over the pictures accounted for his itchy trigger finger. Once he jumped on me it was almost over. The physical contact was all it took. It was way more sexual than he expected it to be and it was too late to turn back."

"He jumped on you?" I asked.

"I've told you what happened," he said.

"He told you that?" I asked.

"Eddie isn't bashful. Yes, he did. The mess he made couldn't be explained any other way. Once we were done, he talked about how horny Bonnie made him. She's his girlfriend. She won't give it up," Glenn said.

"I can believe that," I said.

"He told me about a boy he had jack-off sessions with. A kid named Warren. Warren had porn pictures Eddie liked. I sensed a theme with Eddie's behavior. Warren and him didn't wrestle."

"Warren Pope? He moved a couple of years ago. Yes, I remember seeing them together at school. Who'd have guessed?"

We continued to walk as I thought about what Glenn told me.

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