I pull my phone out of my pocket as I jog around the track and skip the next song on the playlist.
Deciding to start living a healthier life style has been one of the best choices I have ever made. That, and growing my hair out. It has been almost two years now since I started eating healthier and exercising. High school was tough, being openly gay, being overweight, and having bad acne. It. Fucking. Sucked. I spent most freshman year of college adjusting and learning to live without the constant over the shoulder from my family and friends, and it wasn't until sophomore year that I decisively made a choice to live a healthy life. Now, as junior year is almost over, I'm healthy, have a nice body, my acne is gone (about damn time), and I'm happy.
I glance down at my phone again. Five more minutes. I lost count of how many laps I have done. I am drenched in sweat, and my white tank top is sticking to my back and stomach. I give my head a quick shake to keep my hair from sticking to my neck. I have it pulled into a high ponytail, which usually keeps it from sticking, but every now and then it sticks anyway.
It feels good to be home again, even if it is just for the weekend. A break from fast paced college life is what I needed. As my last few minutes of running come to an end, I notice a guy walking towards the bench on the outer edge of the track. It doesn't take me long to recognize him as Brock Williams. I spent our entire senior year of high school with a crush on him. He is straight, of course, but he was one of the few who wasn't a total ass. We weren't friends or anything, but we talked occasionally. And, he's hot.
He is one of those jock types, but not. He is athletic, he played almost every sport in high school, with a toned body and a strong jaw. He is about 6'2 and he has the most beautiful blue eyes. He has light brown hair that he kept short in high school, but now he has let it grow out a little bit, allowing it to become wavy. But, what made me fall for him was that he didn't act like an asshole jock. He is actually pretty smart and was pretty good at drawing, too. I remember always seeing him sketching in his notebook.
My time is up and I stop for a second and wrap my headphones around my phone. I look over at the bench and see him pulling a pair of running shoes out of his bag. Part of me wants to go over and say hi. The other wants me to just turn and leave.
I slip my phone back into the pocket of my athletic shorts and walk over to him. It isn't until I am a few steps in front of him that he looks up, no recognition whatsoever on his face. I stop a few steps from him and smile.
"Hey," I say, my mind still telling me to just turn around and leave. "How's it going?"
Brock looks at me for a few seconds and a look of recognition finally passes over his face.
"Liam?" He asks, surprise evident in his face.
"Yeah," I answer. "How are you?"
"I'm good," he replies. "Just back home for the weekend. Decided to come here for a run."
"Me, too. I'm heading home now before I go meet up with some friends, but I thought I'd come over and say hi."
"Nice. Well, ugh, it was good to see you again."
With the conversation over, I turn around and start walking towards my car. I inwardly sigh with relief that I didn't sound like a complete idiot. But, before I get too far, Brock calls out from behind.
"Hey, Liam!" He shouts.
I turn around, my face surely a mixture of surprise and questioning. Brock is on his feet and moving towards me. He stops about half way and continues talking.
"I'm having a party at my house tomorrow night. You should come."
I stand there for what feels like an eternity, completely surprised by the invitation. I finally manage to smile and give him an answer. "Yeah, sounds like fun."
He smiles and heads back towards the bench.
I quickly turn around and head to my car, not trusting myself to look back. I stop and stand at my car for a minute. I don't know what to think. In the back of my mind I know I shouldn't get excited. He's straight. But...I'm smiling as I slide into my car and shut the door.
I walk towards the track of my old high school. It is good to be home again, it has been a while...two years. I have had a lot on my mind since coming home, things I've been putting towards the back of my mind until now, and the only way I know to clear my head is to go for a run.
I walk through the open gate of the track, and I head towards the empty bench on the outer edge of the track. As I walk toward the bench, I notice someone jogging on the opposite end of the track. From here I can't tell much, just that the person has long hair, most likely a girl. If my brother Mark were here, he would be ogling her pushing me to make a move. Thankfully Mark isn't here.
I sit on the bench and pull out a pair of Nike running shoes. The shoes are black and white, the white more brown from the dirt and wear over the years. I have had these running shoes ever since my senior year of high school. I won State in the 200 meter dash with these shoes. Three years later and they are still holding up...barely. I have a pair of newer running shoes that I wear when I am competing, but I always feel better when I can slip on these old shoes and just run.
I finish tying my shoes and look up to see the other runner walking towards me. It only takes me a second to realize that it is not a girl like I first thought, but a guy. He has long, jet black hair that he has pulled back into a ponytail. He also has amazing jade green eyes that somehow look familiar. He is sweaty from his run, and his white tank top is sticking to his abdomen, showing the definition. His legs are also muscular, so he must run a lot as well. I look up quickly, realizing that I've been staring at his body. He has a smile on his face, and I cannot help but feel like I know him from somewhere. He stops a few feet away from me and starts to speak.
"Hey," he says. "How's it going?"
After hearing his voice, it finally clicks in my head who this guy is.
"Liam?" I ask, surprise evident in my voice.
I can't really believe it. The last time I saw Liam was senior year of high school. Back then his hair was was only mid-length and curly. Now it seems to have lost its curl, and when out of the ponytail, probably reaches the middle of his back. His acne has cleared up and he seems to be tanner, I guess from all the outdoor exercising he must be doing. In high school he was always a bit overweight. That, along with the acne and being openly gay, had made him an easy target for assholes in high school. Now, he looks...well he looks hot.
"I'm good," I finally manage to reply. "Just back home for the weekend. Decided to come here for a run."
"Me, too," he replies. "I'm heading home now before I go meet up with some friends, but I thought I'd come over and say hi."
"Nice. Well, ugh, it was good to see you again." I don't know why I'm stammering.
He turns around and walks towards the gate. I don't know what comes over me, but the next thing I know, I'm up and moving, and I'm shouting after him to wait.
"Hey, Liam!" I shout. My mind is racing; I don't know why I'm doing this.
He stops where he is and turns around.
I look at him a second before continuing. "I'm having a party at my house tomorrow night. You should come."
He smiles. "Yeah, sounds like fun." He turns around and walks out of the gate.
I find myself smiling as I turn back around, but I quickly shake it off, unsure of what is going on. I walk to my bag and grab my phone and headphones. I have more on my mind now than ever. This is going to be a long run.