Looking around at the crowded gym I was left breathless. That was fucking awesome! I-I sung to a crowd of people and they liked it! They totally were having fun! We, we’re actually going to win battle of the bands! We were the best! We even had teachers dancing! I can’t believe this is happening! I can’t believe we actually did good! I can’t believe I actually did good!
I couldn’t pry the proud smile from my face as we headed off stage. I was just too happy. I-I can’t wait to see what everyone thought. I can’t wait to hear what they have to say!
I noticed my band mates hanging a little further behind me but didn’t think twice about it until I noticed the angry look on Mrs. Hopper’s face.
“Oliver Haner.” She boomed, staring me down. “We were very clear with you about letting you perform.”
“What?” I shook my head.
“Do not act like you don’t know what I’m talking about right now.” She demanded. Out of all the times I’ve gotten in trouble this is by far the scariest look I’ve ever received.
“What’d I do?” I asked, feeling the smile quickly fade from my face. “The song wasn’t inappropriate.”
“It wasn’t?” She asked, staring me down even harder. “What about the f-word you dropped?”
“I never said the f-word.” I defended, looking at my bandmates, but they kept their heads down and stayed quiet.
“Oliver, lying won’t help you.” She lectured. “We have a gym full of people who heard it.”
“Well I didn’t say it.” I shrugged. “I-I would remember that.”
“Dude, let it go. You totally said it.” Tyler whispered into my ear.
I turned back in confusion but before I could say anything Mrs. Hopper took a step forward. “I’m sorry but you boys are disqualified.”
“I, you can’t do that!” I argued looking right back at her. “That, we were the best band here! We’re going to win!”
“I-I saw that, but you took it too far Oliver.” She let out, finally realizing that I didn’t mean to slip. “Accident or not we can’t accept that type of language.”
“But I’ve been good all week.” I exhaled shaking my head. “I’ve tried my hardest in every class to make sure I could do this. I-I worked for this. I practiced hours and,”
“I’m sorry Mr. Haner.” She interrupted, noticing how emotional I was growing. “Better luck next year.”
“I, guys.” I called out as they all pushed past me. “Guys I’m sorry.”
“You always do this crap.” Colin shook his head. “Either we kick you out or I’m leaving this band.”
“Me too.” Tyler spoke up. “I’m sick of this. You always screw everything up for everyone. You’re a curse.” The other two members nodded their heads as I tried my hardest to comprehend what was happening. “Come on guys.” Tyler disappointedly spit. “I don’t know why we spoke to him in the first place.”
I bit down on my lip to stop the tears from flowing and quickly ran from the stage through the gym and into the hallway. “Oliver!” I heard a familiar voice shout as I ran into the bathroom. “Oli what’s wrong?” Mark asked, slowly walking in.
“Nothing.” I forced out trying to hide tears.
“Come on, you can tell me.” He offered, shooting me a supportive smile.
“I said nothing!” I shouted, turning away from him.
“Oli, I’m your best friend.” He began, searching for the right words. “I just want to help, you can,”
“If you just wanted to help why did you go and make everything weird?” I finally let out, wiping the tears from my face. “You kissed me. You kissed me and pretended like it never happened.”
“I-that was a mistake.” He gulped, clearly caught off guard by the sudden change in topic. “I just got carried away and,”
“Getting carried away is different than making a mistake.” I grumbled, walking past him and to the door. “Just go hang out with your girlfriend.”
“Oliver wait,” He pleaded, but I let the door slam in his face and wandered towards the exit. The closer I got the more I recognized the two adult figures hanging near it.
“Let’s get out of here.” Ryder exhaled. “We saw what we came for.” Teddy nodded his head but stayed quiet. He tried to take a closer look at my face but I looked down before he could.
“You did a great job.” Ryder began once more, letting his hand pat me on the back. “If they can’t handle curse words that’s their issue. You and your band,”
“Their band.” I corrected in a low voice.
Teddy shot Ryder a puzzled look before turning to me. “It’s not your band?”
“I don’t want to talk about it.” I forced out, reaching into my pockets and throwing in headphones so everyone would stop talking to me. The ride home was quiet. I was probably in trouble. So much freaking trouble. But it didn’t matter to me anymore. None of it did. Even when I try my hardest. Even when I do the only thing I know how I fuck it all up.
I was good this week in class. I was so good. I know it doesn’t sound like it. I know I called out but that’s because I was trying to pay attention. I was trying to give an effort. I tried my hardest to make sure everything was perfect for this moment. That I wasn’t suspended or in detention, that no one could stop me from playing my music. But in the end I still ruined it for myself, and for the only people who actually hung around me! And I freaked out at Mark! I-I just threw everything away! Everything I had!
The second the car stopped I ran out of it and up to my room. I’ve fucked up so much, but never like this. Never this badly.
“Go away!” I shouted as Teddy slowly opened my door. “I don’t want to see anyone right now!”
“Oliver.” He exhaled, looking back to Ryder for help. “Just please, talk to us.”
“Go away!” I repeated in a loud voice.
“It’s us.” Ryder pleaded. “You can trust us.”
“I don’t care!” I screamed in the loudest possible voice. “I fuck everything up anyway! You should probably just leave before I mess you up too!”
Teddy shot Ryder another worried look but before he could say anything Ryder pushed past him and quickly made his way to the side of my bed. “Look at me.” He instructed in a powerful voice.
“I said go,”
“I don’t care what you said.” He repeated. I’d never heard him use this tone before. It-it’s like the power of his singing voice is dripping into his talking. As though he could freeze an entire room with it. “I said look at me.”
I gulped and slowly turned my head to him. “I don’t care what happened tonight.” He warned in the booming voice. “You’re not going to mess anyone up. You’re not cursed. You’re not evil. You’re not wrong. You’re a kid who made a mistake. We all make mistakes. Life’s not out to get you.” He warned, as the intense look in his eyes only grew stronger. “Don’t isolate yourself because you made one mistake. Trust me. It doesn’t end well.”
“You don’t get it. These were the only people who talked to me.” I finally began as my voice started to shake. “I, music was supposed to be the one thing I was good at.”
“Was?” Ryder repeated in the loud voice. “You’re still good at it. You were the best one in that damn school and you weren’t even playing drums!”
“But nothing Oliver.” He interrupted, not taking excuses. “You pick yourself back up and you keeping writing music.”
“I have no one to play with anymore.” I finally let out, turning my back to him.
Before I could get comfortable he reached over and forced me on my back. “Hey.” He let out standing over me. “Since when am I no one?” I stared at him but didn’t say anything. “I, Messiah is dead, and I need a new project.”
I quickly looked away as our eyes began to meet. “You wouldn’t want to do what I want.” I grumbled. “My friends didn’t even want to.”
“Try me.” He offered, sitting next to me and desperately hoping I would keep talking.
“I want, I want bright colors like Teddy wears.” I started in a brave breath. “I want the band to be dressed like it’s a pop show. I want everything to look so happy and perfect. Then I want the music to be sarcastic and real. I want it to sound light and airy but about real issues.”
“I, I can do that.” I nodded my head. “But it wouldn’t be heavy metal.”
“I don’t want to be a heavy metal band. I-I don’t want people to know what genre we are.” I shrugged. “I want to write what I want, when I want.” Teddy let out a stifled laugh at my words. I looked over and felt fire begin to enter my eyes. “Is that funny?” I asked, still ready to fight anyone and everyone.
“It’s exactly what Ryder told me before he found Messiah.” Teddy shrugged, walking over and taking a seat on the other side of the bed.
“Teddy, just, quiet.” Ryder hushed, trying his hardest to piece together the band I was describing. “So you want something like Twenty-One Pilots?”
“No.” I shook my head thinking it all over. “They, I don’t like that they’re just two people. I want a big band. I want a big stage presence.
Ryder slowly nodded his head and thought it all over. “Write me some drum pieces. Give me something to work with on guitar, and we’ll work on lyrics later.”
“He’s thirteen.” Teddy reminded him in a sigh.
“So.” Ryder shrugged, reaching over to my night stand and grabbing the bongos that lie there. “I don’t care about his age when he’s writing this.” To my surprise Ryder quickly mimicked the beat I had played him a little over a week ago! “Remember that?”
“I, yeah.” I quickly nodded nearly frozen by my shock. “How do you remember that?”
“It was really catchy and unique.” Ryder shrugged. “I, we can start a band, but I need you to pick yourself up first.”
“Who else would be in it?” I forced out, looking back to him.
He let out a deep sigh and shook his head. “Maybe other people, maybe no one. I can’t promise that it’ll be the big band you want, but I think we could make some pretty great music together.”
“You’re just saying all this to make me feel better.” I finally decided, looking back up at the ceiling. “There’s no way you want to make a band with me. There’s no way it’d be good.”
“Why not?” He interrupted before I could go any further. “You’ve already said Tommy sucks, and you know I agree. You know I wrote almost all of Messiah’s drums and they’re not that good. You know that’s what I’m weak in, but you, for the first time in my life I’ll have a good drummer.”
The room grew silent for a few seconds before Ryder leaned over me once more. “What do you say Oliver? Do we have a band?”
I looked from Ryder to Teddy then back to Ryder. “Deal.” I nodded my head.
“This band isn’t going on tour.” Teddy interrupted, beginning to stare us both down. “I don’t care who’s dream is what. I’m making that a rule right now.”
I couldn’t help but laugh as Ryder rolled his eyes. “So tomorrow you going to have that drum piece written for me?” Ryder asked with hopeful eyes.
“I, yeah.” I quickly nodded, as the reality slowly started to set in. I-I’m in a band with Ryder Sullivan! Sure, it’s probably just something he’s doing to cheer me up. Sure, it probably won’t sound good at all. Sure, he can’t even play one song without getting winded. But we’ll find a way to make this work. I’ll find a way to make this work.
School, it’s not for me anymore. Classrooms, teachers, class mates, I don’t like it. I don’t want it. I’m going to be a performer. I’m going to put on a show.
Ryder stood up, satisfied with himself, but as he headed towards the door Teddy stayed seated. “Can we talk about everything else that happened?” He asked, trying his hardest to force eye contact.
“No.” I rejected with a shake of my head.
“I know you want to.” Teddy shrugged. “We won’t judge you. I promise.”
I grew quiet and laid back on my bed. For a minute or two Ryder impatiently waited for someone to give in, but eventually joined Teddy on the bed, knowing this was going to go on all night.
After five minute of silence I shrugged my shoulders and tried my hardest to crawl under my sheets. “Can I go to bed?”
“If you want.” Teddy shrugged, refusing to leave me be.
“This isn’t funny.” I muttered, turning my back to them once more.
“It’s not supposed to be. “ Teddy said in a quiet voice.
I let out a long groan, and threw my head back. “I really don’t want to talk about it.”
“I know that’s a lie.” Teddy sighed, seeing right through me. “I know if you don’t it’ll keep you awake all night.”
“Then that’s my problem.” I muttered, closing my eyes, knowing they’d eventually have to go to sleep.
“Well now it’s our problem too.” Teddy decided. I felt his legs swing up on the mattress as the bed began to dip more. “I’m not letting you anxiously stay up all night alone.”
“You have work in the morning.” I said, finally finding the dagger I’d been looking for.
“They have coffee there.” He rejected, quickly dismissing the only true weapon I had.
“I, you’ll go to bed eventually.” I shrugged, keeping my eyes shut and trying to get comfortable.
“If you say so.” Ryder supported, I felt part of him try to fit onto the bed, but could tell it wasn’t going well.
After a few more minutes passed I finally turned and stared at both of them. They quietly sat on the bed, patiently waiting for me to either fall asleep or start talking.
“Why are you doing this?” I finally asked. “Don’t you always talk about personal space?” I asked, starting to snap. “Don’t you always say we need to give each other privacy?”
“Yeah.” Teddy quickly nodded. “But this isn’t all those other times. I’ve never seen you this upset.”
“And since when does that matter to you?” I mumbled, looking away once more. “You don’t care when you upset me.”
“That’s because I know when I do it you’ll get over it.” Teddy explained. “And I know when I upset you it’s for good reason. But what happened tonight, you’re not upset for good reason. You’re upset because you’re getting crucified over one mistake.”
“I’m not upset about that.” I forced out. “I mean I was, but now I have another band and they can go fuck themselves.” I decided, drawing a quiet laugh from Ryder. “I-I freaked out at Mark.”
“Oh.” Teddy let out in a sigh. “Why?”
“I just wanted to be alone, and he followed me into the bathroom.” I began, turning back towards them. “He was saying how he’s my best friend, and I can trust him but I need to know why.” A blush formed on my face as I thought about him. “He kissed me, and it’s not fair that he acts like it was nothing.”
“No it’s not.” Teddy supported, taking advantage of the eye contact we were finally making. “But are you prepared for if he says he likes you?”
“I, no.” I admitted. “But at least then I know why he did it.”
“Well why do you think he did it?” Ryder weighed in, resting his head on Teddy’s arm.
“I-I don’t know. He has a girlfriend.” I shook my head. “I, we were just talking and it got quiet. Then he just kissed me, and we pretended like it didn’t happen.”
“Would you date him?” Teddy asked, eager to get as many details as he could.
“I-I don’t know.” I shrugged, carefully thinking about him. His long but clean cut brown hair, and lightbrown eyes. The delicate features and freckles that covered his face. “I think so, but I-I don’t think I’m gay.”
“You don’t have to be gay to date a guy.” Ryder shrugged. “Maybe this is the only guy you’ll ever date. Maybe you’ll only ever date guys. Maybe you won’t even date him. Why even bother labeling it right now? Just have fun.”
“Mhm.” Teddy supported. “Just do what you’re comfortable with, but if you ask me Mark has a crush on you.”
“You’re just saying that.” I blushed quickly turning away.
“I don’t think so.” Ryder supported. “He came and asked about you before the battle started. I think he has some Oli fever.”
“Ew.” Teddy giggled. “Can we not call it that?”
“Maybe we won’t call it anything.” Ryder cackled. “Your little brother is a player though. He has a girl crushing on him too.
“Shut up!” Teddy gasped. “Who Oli?”
“Ryder! No one!” I shouted started to sit up. “She was no one!”
“She doesn’t sound like no one.” Ryder teased, drawing another laugh from Teddy. I hate when they get like this! All they do is laugh after the other says something! It’s like they’re talking through laughter! They sound like crazy people!
“Who’s cuter, her or Mark?” Teddy asked.
“Don’t ask that.” Ryder shook his head. “Looks don’t matter.”
“Oh be quiet, that’s a lie and you know it.” Teddy argued through laughter.
“Oh yeah, do they matter to you?” He giggled.
“I don’t know, I’d say you’re pretty damn good looking,”
“Okay! Okay!” I waved off. “That’s enough for tonight! I spoke to you guys about it! Can I really go to bed now?”
“Yeah, yeah,” Teddy exhaled finally calming down. Before I knew it I felt a kiss plant on the side of my head. “I love you kid.”
“EW!” I screeched, but had to stay turned away to hide my blush.
“Love you.” Ryder let out, reaching over and gently shaking my arm.
“Head up Oliver, you’re a Haner.” Teddy began once more as they reached our door. “We’re meant for great things.”
I rolled my eyes but would be lying if I said they didn’t make me feel better. Teddy did the right thing by refusing to leave. He knows me well enough to understand that. He knows when to pressure and when to back off. He-he’s my idol for a reason. Whether I admit it or not, he’ll always be who I want to be like. I want to be happy and successful the way he is. I want to work as hard as he does. I want to forgive and love the way he dos.
With brave fingers I picked up my phone and slowly began to plan out a text for Mark. “I’m sorry I yelled at you.” Was all I could manage and with nervous fingers I hit the send button.
“It’s okay.” He quickly replied. “Can I come over tomorrow?”
“Yeah.” I immediately responded, feeling my heart bring to grow nervous.
“Okay cool. You did really good tonight.” He sent, before starting to work over another text. I nervously watched the bubbles rise and fall as I patiently waited to see what else he had to say. “Everyone was saying it. You looked really good too.”
I gulped hard reading over the last part of the message. What does he mean I looked really good? Like up on stage? How I was dressed? How I sang? “Thanks, see you tomorrow.” Was all I could manage.
That night all I could think about was him. Would I actually date him? Probably. Like Teddy said, why not give him a chance?I-I’m comfortable and happy around him. He’s the only person I’ve ever met to just let me be me. He’s never tried to change me, or yell at me. He likes me, and I-I like him too.
When I finally did fall asleep I found myself dreaming of him. There we were in his room nervously looking at one another. He said something I couldn’t hear before leaning over and trying to kiss me. I went to pull back but could feel time freezing. I thought about how good the first kiss felt, and how much I actually wanted to do it again. Before anything else could happen I leaned forward and locked lips with him.
My teenage fantasies seemed to take over as we both fell back onto him. The more I let myself enjoy the moment the more I lost control over myself. I felt his hand reach below to our waists but did nothing to stop it as my curious mind imagined what it would all feel like. Before I knew it an urge began to sound out throughout my body. My heart began to race, and a warm feeling began to build in my shorts.
I slowly woke up to the feeling growing more and more intense until suddenly it burst. As I opened my eyes I felt waves of pleasure emanate from the region I had imagined Mark touching. Yet the pleasure seemed to be matched by the panic of a liquid filling my underwear.
No! No! No! I’m wetting the bed! I quickly threw the covers off of me but realized whatever had come out wasn’t urine. I gulped hard as I racked my brain before thinking of last year’s health class. Wait! Wait! This is what all the other boys were talking about! I-I finally had one! I-I had a wet dream! I couldn’t help but let a proud smile cross my face as I enjoyed the moment a little more.
But as I went to stand I felt the discomfort of what had happened and gulped hard, desperately trying to figure out how to handle it. Will it smell if I try to hide it? Will it be obvious? I-I just have to get to the laundry room and throw it in the hamper or washer. If I do that then no one will know!
It took me a few minutes to build the confidence but when I finally got changed and began to walk out of the room I could feel my heart racing. I threw the damaged pair into my pocket and slowly began to walk down the hallway, until suddenly Teddy popped out of the bathroom.
I quickly turned around and went to head back to my room but had already been caught. “Sorry, were you trying to use the bathroom?” Teddy asked.
“I, yeah.” I decided with a nod of my head.
“Do you wake up often needing to use the bathroom?” Teddy asked, throwing on his doctor voice.
“No.” I quickly rejected.
He nodded his head, but quickly zeroed in on the stuffed pocket. “What are you up to?” He asked, seeing the guilt soaking my face. “What do you have?”
“I, nothing.” I quickly let out, trying to fight the red naturally filling my face.
“Oliver, it’s too early for this nonsense.” He exhaled. “Just save us both the time and show me.”
“I, no.” I quickly shook my head. “It’s none of your business.”
“Oliver, do I have to get mom or dad involved?” He exhaled in disappointment.
“No!” I quickly shouted even louder. Concern entered his eyes as he took a step closer. “I-I wet the bed.” I decided, trying to mask the truth as much as possible. “I drank too much water before bed and had an accident.”
Teddy nodded his head and let out a deep breath. “That’s perfectly natural for a kid your age. Why don’t I help you wash the sheets so mom or dad don’t know? We’ll keep it a secret.”
“I, no, the sheets they’re fine.” I shook my head. “I-I can handle it all myself.”
“Oliver, I’m sorry I’m drawing a line here.” Yet as he went to step towards my room it rang in his head what could really be happening. “Oh, you wet the bed.” He repeated in a sigh.
“No!” I shouted once more. “I, I, just let me go!”
“It’s okay, it’s totally okay.” He quickly motioned. “Just keep it down or you’ll wake dad, and trust me you don’t want that.”
I slowly nodded my head as he pushed me back into my room and slowly shut the door behind him. “I know you don’t want to talk about it, and honestly neither do I.” He began as his doctor voice grew stronger. “But how do you usually handle this?”
I grew quiet and looked away as his question rang out in my head. “This is the first time?” He asked, accidently sounding too surprised. “That’s totally normal, I forget you’re only thirteen.”
“Wh-when did you have your first?” I gulped in a brave voice. Teddy bashfully reached his hand up to his head and looked away. “You know mine.” I protested.
“I, maybe when I was twelve, I don’t remember. I-that’s not the point. Let’s just get you taken care of.” He uncomfortably shook his head.
“How do you think I feel?” I argued, trying to keep my voice down.
Teddy quickly shook his head as he realized how poorly this had started to go. “Okay, okay,” He exhaled, motioning for me to take a seat. “I’m sorry, I’m being immature about this.” He took in a deep breath and composed himself. “I know this didn’t go perfectly for you, but you should be proud. Wet dreams, they’re a pretty big deal. You’re on your way to being a man now Oli.”
“I know.” I grumbled. “I had health class last year.”
“Did you know Haner boys have terrible luck with them?” He teased, trying to lighten the mood. “Mom caught me on the way to the laundry room my first time, so you’re totally lucky you got caught by me.”
“What’d she say?” I nervously asked, still not looking up.
“She freaked out at first.” He awkwardly laughed. “She almost started screaming. Then she took a second and told me that it’s all natural. She said it just means my body is growing and I’ll be okay.” He nodded his head. “And she also said that it’s totally cool if I want to explore that side of me.”
He took another deep breath and stared off into the distance. “So they’ll be cool with you doing that too. Just make sure you lock your door and don’t do it in the bathroom. You share that with me and Ryder.”
“Do what?” I asked, but as I looked at him I finally understood. “EW!” I shouted by accident. “You’re such a pervert!”
“I don’t want to know about it!” He shouted, starting to panic once more. “I just want you to be comfortable with yourself. You, if you have the urge to do that it’s totally okay. You should explore yourself all you want.”
“Stop talking like that!” I cried out, trying my hardest to deal with the uncomfortable moment.
“This is why I don’t work with kids.” He groaned. “Just, don’t be ashamed of any of that stuff. Do what comes natural to you. If you don’t’ want to, don’t. If you do, then do.” I nodded my head, and finally started to calm down.
A few moments of silence passed as I anxiously began to sway my feet. “It was about a boy.” I confessed. “Does that mean I’m gay?”
“Maybe.” He shrugged. “It could mean you’re bi too. Or you were probably thinking about it a lot before bed. Your body just needed to process itself, so it was coming no matter what.” He sighed. “Just do what you’re comfortable with, okay?”
“Okay.” I gulped with a nod.
“And from now on keep a towel under your bed, and just throw the bad boxers out. Trust me, they’re not ruined but they’re not worth the trouble of sneaking to the laundry room.” He advised as I nodded my head.
“Can I, can I come to you about this stuff?” I gulped, knowing I had a lot more questions than answers. “I, never mind, I’ll just google,”
“No you won’t.” He quickly interrupted. “I, it’s not the most comfortable topic but if you have questions you should ask. Me and Dad are always here for you.”
I nodded my head and looked at him. “Was I too young to kiss Mark?” I asked but received a quick no. “Wh-when did you first do it?”
“Kiss someone?” Teddy asked. “When I was like eleven or twelve. It was a girl and we were goofing around though.”
“No.” I shook my head and quickly looked away. “It. When did you do it?”
“Oh.” Teddy let out with wide eyes. “I, um, thirteen.” He gulped. “I was just curious about a lot of stuff back then. I wanted to make sure I was gay.”
“Did you regret it?” I couldn’t help but ask.
“Maybe.” He swayed his head. “I wish I was more emotionally prepared. Having sex, it connects you with someone. It’s not just about the fun feel good part, it’s about establishing a connection.”
“Oh.” I softly exhaled. “Do you and Ryder do it?”
“OLIVER!” He shouted jumping up. “You can’t ask that! I-I’ll be cool with a lot of questions about my past, but not about now!” I couldn’t help but laugh at how uncomfortable he had grown.
“Look, I, if you’re trying to ask if thirteen is too young for sex, then yes, I think it is.” He nodded his head finally taking back control. “But when you want to try things has to do with your genetics and we, we’re an impulsive family which means we’re at risk. So if you do want to try something make sure it’s with someone who you’re comfortable with and you do it safely.”
“Okay.” I softly exhaled. “I-I don’t really want to. I just wanted to see if it’s okay.”
Teddy nodded his head and lightly pushed me with his hand. “Just listen to your body Oli. It’ll let you know when it’s ready.”
I nodded my head but as he reached the door I couldn’t help but sigh. “Thank you Teddy.” I forced out.
“Anytime.” He quickly nodded. “It-it’s not fun to discuss but it’s totally normal, and I’m a doctor. If you have questions you can ask them whenever.”
I nodded my head but was relieved when he finally shut the door. I found a spare plastic bag in my room and quickly disposed of the boxers. If only I had done this in the first place! I would have saved sooo much trouble! Then again I’m kind of glad Teddy caught me. He gave me good advice. He let me know that this is all okay.
When I finally laid back in bed I thought of the feeling. Of how powerful it made me feel. Of the moment I dreamed about. I know I’m not ready for that yet, but I’ll be fourteen soon enough. Maybe I can try it then. I-I want to know what my body likes. I want to explore the options and see if I’m one way or the other.
As I peacefully fell asleep my dreams stayed normal. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little disappointed when I woke up. But hey! This time Teddy wouldn’t be around to help cover for me if I needed it!
The first thing I did was take a shower then hit the drums, desperately trying to shift my focus into my writing. If Ryder wants a new band mate, I’ll give that to him. I’ll be the best god damn drummer he’s ever had!
“Oliver!” My dad shouted down the stairs. “Marks here for you!”
“Okay!” I screamed back, putting the sticks away and dropping my ear protection. The second I saw him walking down the stairs I suddenly became conscious about my shirtless body. I gulped hard and quickly grabbed the shirt off the floor. Why am I so damn scrawny and small? Why can’t I just be a little bigger? I bet Teddy wasn’t this scrawny. I bet he got everyone he wanted.
“Hey.” Mark let out as I threw the shirt over my head.
“Hey.” I gulped. The second our eyes met I got flash backs to the dream. I leaned forward slightly to hide any evidence that was forming one way or another.
“Are you going to play me something?” He teased, taking a seat on the couch.
“I, um, maybe in a little bit.” I lied, trying to find an excuse to stay how I was.
“You’re acting funny.” He giggled, leaning back comfortably.
“I, no I’m not.” I quickly shook my head.
He let out a deep breath and thought it all over. “If you want to pretend the kiss never happened we can.” He said, looking down at the ground.
“Do you?” I couldn’t help but ask.
“I want to do whatever you want to do.” He shrugged. “If you want to talk about it we can.”
I nodded my head and anxiously swiveled in my chair. “Why’d you kiss me?”
“I wanted to try it.” He admitted. “You looked cute and I-I couldn’t stop myself.”
“So you think I’m cute?” I groaned in a sigh. Cute? Cute?! Like a puppy dog?
“No, I- I never said that.” He blushed. “I said you looked cute.”
“What do I look today?” I asked, as our eyes locked.
“Cute.” He forced out, shifting his gaze down to the ground. I let out a disappointed sigh and turned away. “I’m sorry, I never should’ve said anything. I-I-I let’s just forget what I said. I mean what would Jess think if I was calling another guy cute.”
“I don’t know, what would she think?” I pressured, looking back to him.
“She would break up with me.” He nodded his head. “But I-I don’t care.” He decided, going back and forth with himself. “I kissed her yesterday and it sucked. It sucked so much.”
“Did ours suck?” I asked, afraid to take my eyes off of him.
“I don’t think so.” He muttered under his breath.
“I don’t think so either.” I swiveled back and forth. “I’ve been thinking about it a lot.”
“Really?” He excitedly asked before catching himself. “Like how much?”
“A lot.” I emphasized in a sigh.
“OLIVER!” An adult voice sang as he pulled open the basement door. “Oli Oli Oliver.” He continued to sing, clearly in another great mood. I don’t know what the hell’s going on with him but he’s always so moody. One day he’s depressed the other he’s singing and laughing. “You write the drums yet, I’ve been thinking about,” He paused as he reached the midway point and saw Mark sitting there. “Hi.” Ryder let out in confusion.
“Hi.” Mark shot back, looking to me for help.
“Ryder Mark, Mark Ryder.” I quickly introduced. “Now go back upstairs.”
“Damn.” Ryder sighed turning around. “You used to follow me everywhere, now you treat me like crap!”
“Maybe you need to stop being so boring!” I teased back as he quietly shut the door behind him.
“So you actually know him really well?” Mark asked in disbelief.
“Yeah, he’s my brother’s boyfriend.” I shrugged, anxiously grabbing my drum sticks and beginning to tap them against the edges of the drums.
Mark nodded his head but kept his eyes on me. “And your parents are cool with that?”
“I don’t know. It changes like once a week here.” I shrugged. “They dated when they were in high school then broke up then got back together so it’s a whole thing.”
“Yeah but what about them being guys?” Mark pressured.
“What about it?” I let out, as his words started to sink in.
“That’s not weird for your parents?” He continued.
“No.” I shook my head. “They don’t care who we bring home. They just want us to be happy.”
“Do I make you happy?” He gulped, finally looking back into my eyes.
I cautiously nodded my head. “Yeah.” I softly exhaled.
“You make me happy too.” Mark decided. “Can we, do you want to, maybe we can go on a date sometime?”
“Okay.” I accepted. “I, maybe you me Teddy and Ryder can go out. That way none of our parents think anything and you can even meet Ryder.”
“I, yeah.” He smiled. “But you’ll still be the highlight of the night.” I couldn’t help but smile and blush at his compliment. I could get used to this! It’s no wonder I’ve always kept him so close. He’s funny and accepting and kind and cute. I may not be gay, I may not be straight but I-I’m going to see where this with Mark takes me. Man being a teenager is so crazy! Last night I lost everything and now, now I’m in a band with Ryder Sullivan and have my first real date!