Porter's locker is next to mine. He's that guy nobody really likes because he's a complete douchebag. However, since he isn't into dumb shit like Dungeons and Dragons and he's rich, he's never quite at the bottom of the social tier. We have three classes together but I don't talk to him. I think he's friends with Crispin. "I saw you," he says one day. "Oh yeah?" I reply, because I'm not a complete douchebag. "Where? The mall?" "I live like two blocks away from you, dumbass. I saw you in your car." "Okay." God, I haven't been at school ten minutes and I want to hit someone. "So you and Crispin are hooking up, huh?" I wonder if I look like people do in the movies, when they go all stiff and scared shitless. I try to play it cool. "What?" Porter slams his locker shut and leans against it with a smarmy grin. "You might want to be more careful when you make out with another guy in broad daylight." That must have been when I drove Crispin home on Saturday morning. It was pretty early, like seven-thirty, so I had figured that no one would be awake to see it. "Thanks for the tip." Do I sound nonchalant or like I'm about to piss myself? Given how quickly my body is going hot and cold, I'm not sure I'd be able to tell if my own urine were running down my leg. "Anytime. Thanks for signing me in to P.E." "For fuck's sake, Porter," I grit out in a low voice. The shit did pick a perfect time to blackmail me - no one is paying attention to us yet, but I can see LeAndre heading my way for first period. "Or you can buy me lunch," Porter offers. "But why don't we save that for tomorrow?" It just gets worse. We're coming out of Spanish class. I don't think I caught a word of it, my mind was filled with ways to get out of being Porter's bitch. Just my luck that the art hipsters are in front of the door. "Hey, cocksucker," Jay says, and shoves Crispin so hard that he falls over. His books fly out of his hands, his pencils skitter across the floor; his breath comes out in a huge whoosh as he lands on his back. What the hell? Everyone sees it, but not even his friends do a damn thing. They just watch or look at each other, like ZOMG, like, jocks, right? We're so persecuted. Oh my god, I hate everyone today. The words burst out of me before I even think. "Jay! You goddamn jackass! What the hell is wrong with you?" Sticking a finger in his face I yell, "Leave him alone, or I swear to god I will put my foot so far up your ass, your fucking teeth will fall out!" Jay gapes for a moment and the whole hall goes silent. Shit. Shit. Everyone is staring at me. What do I do? Think, Aaron. Think. LeAndre steps forward and extends Crispin a hand. "Not cool, man," he says to Jay, who looks like he's about to kill me. "Aaron." Coach's voice booms into my ear. I'm in deep shit. "Come with me." Detention. Again. Morning and afternoon until the end of the April, and I've been barred from my damn senior prom. My parents are not pleased. "Jay isn't in there with you? That's bullshit," LeAndre tells me in Calc. "You're telling me," I whisper back. "You'd think because the season's over Coach would quit letting him get away with every fucking thing." "But bro," Le Andre pauses with a laugh. "Your voice was so loud. It was like the voice of God, I swear. There's not way you could have gotten away with it." I shrug, trying to pretend that the heat rushing to my face has nothing to do with my feelings. "I was already in a bad mood, I guess." LeAndre doesn't get to say whatever he was going to because Mr. Mendoza has us split into groups, but he gives me a look that does not bode well, like he knows I'm hiding something. My gut twists through the remaining forty minutes. When we pick up our backpacks he casually asks, "Do you have any classes with Viera?" I shake my head, relieved that it's a question I can answer honestly. "Just gym, and I see him around when I have detention. He's an office aide." "Huh." He nods thoughtfully. "What?" "Naw, you just seem to know him a little. I've never seen you so mad, is all." I really wish I could say something LeAndre would appreciate, like Yeah, in the Biblical sense, but instead I freeze up like a teenage popsicle. Is it obvious? Am I obvious? What if my parents find out? I'm not ready to tell them yet. Will they still let me go to college? A punch on the arm snaps me out of it. "Aaron, it's cool," LeAndre says. "You did the right thing. Jay will come around. Everything will be cool." Am I just imagining that he means more than just that Jay will get over being yelled at? "What reason did Coach give?" Crispin asks later as he walks me to study hall. "Profanity and threatening another student. I'm lucky I didn't get suspended." "And Jay gets nothing," he says wryly. "Yeah." "Of course," Crispin snorts. "Can't have the precious all-star in detention." I don't respond. Frankly, I'm sick of this self-pitying, all-people-who-play-sports-are-evil attitude that his group holds. "Thanks for standing up for me." "Yeah." I'm not really in the mood to be set up as his fucking jock in shining jersey. "Are you going to get in trouble at home?" "Already did." Damn it, I don't want to talk about this anymore. "Sorry." "Why can't you just defend yourself, Crispin?" I snap. "You're a goddamn black belt." He actually stops in his tracks. "I beg your pardon?" We have to wait for the Model U.N. dorks to pass us, and then I continue, "Like it's all up to me because somehow my life got set up so that I'm friends with a bully. If you were fucking some guy in band, you wouldn't ask him to defend you." Crispin folds his arms. "If I were fucking some guy in band, we'd both be out." "Fuck you." I stride down the hallway. "No, fuck you!" he hisses as he catches up. "You're more concerned with your reputation than the health and safety of another human being. It's always 'I just gotta wait until college. I'll come out in college.' You think it's going to be any easier to come out then? You're so comfortable in your closet. You'll head off to Berkley and find some more assholes to befriend, and then you'll be stuck in the same damn cycle because you live in fear of telling anyone who you are." "My friends are assholes? How many of your friends have you told about us? You can't fucking trust them either. In fact, I'm pretty sure that you guys only hang out because you can't be fucking bothered to try being well-liked." I retort. "Everyone's all, 'Woe is me, I'm such a martyr for the outcast cause. Nobody understands me because I don't conform to society. Lady Gaga.' You know what? Your buddy Shauna Oldman refuses to participate in any group work, so everyone else has to pick up her slack. I did twice the work for Physics this year because of her. Oh, and here's something fun: that jackass Porter is trying to blackmail me because he happened to be awake at the asscrack of dawn on Saturday and saw us in my car. Poor guy. High school has been tough on him." "Wait, Porter?" Crispin grabs my arm, but I throw him off. His dark eyes narrow. "Leave him to me." I groan. "Sure. You can't tell a guy to quit pushing you in the hall, but you can talk the world's worst person into not blackmailing me to buy him lunch and get him out of class for the rest of the year." "I told you I'll handle it. Now come here." Crispin pulls me into a dark classroom and pulls my head down for a kiss. He doesn't let go when I raise my head. "You're still mad at me. Fine. I'll call you later." Whatever. Jay knocks on the glass pool house doors after dinner. "Hey," he says, letting himself in. "What is up with you, lately?" I shrug without taking my eyes off the TV. Nothing I can talk to you about. Jay flops down on the love seat. "Seriously, dude, you've been acting weird for like, a month." "Did LeAndre tell you to stop by?" I reply. "He suggested it, yeah. Whatever." Jay leans over to swipe at my shoulder. "Dude, just tell me what jumped up your ass and died." "Maybe that I got my ass handed to me because I did the right thing." I look over at him. "You know you're a bully, right?" "Nah," Jay says nonchalantly then drops his gaze. "Yeah." "That's fucking embarrassing, man." "Is this about that queer kid? Dude, I didn't hurt him." "Messing with him all the time makes you look super repressed." Jay thinks about that for a moment. "Fuck, Aaron, the guy gets on my nerves. He's a douchebag in class, like, everything I say he has to shit all over like I'm the dumbest person on the planet. He dresses like a freak. And he's like, always looking at you. Always. Is that not fucking creepy?" Crispin still stares at me? Don't smile, don't smile, keep it cool. "I don't mind it. It's not like he's going to jump me in the showers." Oh, the things I'm not saying. Jay looks skeptical. "You don't mind." "No. And I think people would have a lot more respect for you if you behaved like a goddamn adult." I feel like an ass. I could tell him. Jay and I have been friends since junior high school. Sure, he has that homophobic streak, but that can change. Otherwise he's an all right guy. I add. "Look, I've talked to the guy a couple of times and he's cool." Jay snorts. "Shut up, I've never seen you talk to him." "Maybe he's just watching me because I only ever talk to him when nobody's around," I suggest, spreading my hands. "Like when I'm fucking scrubbing desks covered in dicks that you drew - " "You're welcome." "And Crispin's running errands for the office," I finish. "Actually, that's kind of mean of me. Seriously, he's cool. Just leave him alone, and don't freak out if I start talking to him in public. Also, maybe if you did your homework you wouldn't sound like an idiot." "Dude, I swear the guy is a fag and hot for your ass." "Just means he has good taste. It doesn't mean you need to fuck with him." I'll fuck with him. "Let me deal with my own shit." Shaking his head Jay stands. "Whatever, man. Let me know when you're over your period." That's as good as an agreement. "Bye." It hasn't been twenty minutes when a small figure in diaper pants appears at the doors. Crisp in knocks twice before poking his head in. "Can I come in?" "How did you get in here?" I ask, sounding as surly as I feel, but way more than I intended to let on. Crispin gives me a look. "On a boat filled with dozens of other Latinos, jerk. I told your mom that you had gotten in trouble for coming to my rescue. She likes me." He closes the curtains, a habit now. After Jay coming over I'm not sure I want to see Crispin. What the fuck stuck me in the middle of this social war? "What do you want?" "You know," Crispin tells me as he leans against the doorframe, "you can be really hard to read." "Yeah?" I don't care. "Yeah, like you totally caught me off guard when you snapped at me today." "Hmph." "You're right, I've played the victim and have never said anything good about your friends," he says slowly. "I can't say that I like them, but I'm sorry I put you in the middle of it." It's a caveman move, but I just grunt in response. I'm still angry. "But I just talked to Porter and got him to back down. Well, I'll be bringing him lunch for a month, but whatever, the restaurant always has leftovers." I snort and flip the TV channel. "I can't believe you actually hang out with that guy, but still complain about my friends." "Also I beat the shit out of him," Crispin adds casually, "after he got mad and tried to punch me. Bringing him lunch is to stop him from pressing charges, which I could contest, but my folks don't have the money for a court case. Leftovers it is. Pretty cheap, actually." I glance at him. Crispin watches me without expression, but his fists are balled in his pockets and his stance is stiff. He's nervous and I don't know why. I haven't hit anyone today. He followed through on his word and gave Porter what he deserved. So did I, albeit more peacefully. A big part of me wants to wallow in my injury and anger, so I go back to watching basketball. "Hey," Crispin says firmly, crossing the room to straddle my lap, "stop being mad at me. I just performed the ultimate do-unto-others for you, and I apologized for being whiny and talking trash about your friends." I keep my eyes on the TV. "Oi. Hey. Aaron." Suddenly he grabs my crotch, which gets my attention immediately. "What - " I begin, but I don't finish because Crispin's tongue is in the way. Aw, fuck it. I wrap an arm around his waist and pull him to me. He tastes like orange soda. Crispin's hand is still trapped between us, and he wiggles his fingers as the other hand curves around my neck. He tilts his head, pressing our mouths more fully together, and strokes my tongue with his. Oh, god. "Thank you for standing up for me," he says, lifting his head for a moment. "You're welcome," I reply between kisses. "Thanks for kicking Porter's ass." "You're welcome." Crispins sits back and brings both hands to my cheeks. "Aaron, I really like you." He presses his palms together until I'm making fish lips. I like him, too, probably way more than I should. "I can't believe I'm actually telling you this - I cried in the bathroom later, after you yelled at me," he says, and I immediately feel like the world's biggest gaping asshole. "Like, ugly cried. Ruined my eyeliner." I laugh a little at that, but reply, "Sorry, I guess I was taking it out on you. By the way, Jay came by." Crispin releases my face. "Oh?" "Only because LeAndre told him to, but he'll quit pushing you around." His big black eyes blink at me for a moment, and then Crispin grins. "See, you defend my honor to the school's hot jock, then you rip me a new one, and then you get aforementioned Neanderthal to keep his paws - I'm sorry, I need to stop doing that - the young gentleman to keep his hands off me." I shrug. "Ugh, you drive me crazy. Are you still mad?" Crispin asks. "No." "Good, because I have to go." Crispin pecks me on the lips and stands. "What?" I have a boner and at least an hour until my mom will call me for dinner. "I'm supposed to be picking my brother up from soccer in like, ten minutes." "You fucking cocktease." Crispin's only response is to blow me a sassy kiss as he sails out the door. I plot my revenge then. I think about it as I jack off, imagining Crispin's lips wrapped around my cock and his firm body under my fingertips. I think about it on the way to school, while LeAndre cracks jokes, and Jay's girlfriend runs her mouth through all of Spanish 4. I think about it a lot during Calculus, then have to pretend I'm looking for something in my backpack so no one notices my boner. I think about it while I eat lunch and my friends poke fun at me for zoning out. The bell rings - we have 5 minutes to clear out for the next wave of students and another 25 to regroup for 5th period. Jay looks at me in shock when I stand up and shove my tray at him. "You owe me for yesterday. Take that," I order, and dive into the crowd. The arty kids all sit closest to the trash cans because they either can't or refuse to fight for a better table. Crispin's in the middle of his gaggle of fag hags. They don't notice me until my hand is wrapped around his arm and I've yanked him out of his seat. "Hey, leave him alone, you knuckle walker!" shouts one. Really, bitch? After I stood up for him yesterday? I ignore her but Crispin assures her it's fine. We barely get a second glance as I drag him out the doors. We're only close to the auditorium, which is usually locked, and the janitor's closet. Classroom it is. I pull Crispin down the hall so fast we're almost running. "Aaron, what the hell?" he protests, but he isn't dragging his feet. Computer lab is open and full, bio lab is closed, English room is open but the lights are off. Perfect. "You know we only have like, twenty minutes, right?" Crispin says nervously as I close the door behind us, move a poster to cover the window, and shove a desk chair under the handle. "That's enough," I reply, and yank his belt off. It skitters loudly across the floor. "Aaron, what are you doing?" "Think of it as vengeance," I say as I shove his shorts down and lift him onto the teacher's desk. "Lean back." Crispin is already half hard when I grasp him. I love his dick. It's the perfect size for his body, and even better for my mouth. Within seconds he's fully heard, and he moans when I start bobbing up and down. God, he tastes good. Skin slides slicks between my lips, tight curly hair tickles my nose; I can feel Crispin's rapid heartbeat on my tongue. My evil plan to get him hard and leave him dry is ruined when his hand comes to rest softly on my head. I like doing this for him. I like catching him off guard, I like the soft noises he makes and how he can't keep his eyes open. I like the sharp clear taste of his precum, and the way he gasps when I roll his balls between my fingers. I like that I can make him so fucking turned on he won't stop me even though what I'm doing could get us both suspended. Someone rattles the door handle. "Fuck," Crispin breathes, lust and panic pitching his voice high. I pull hard, lashing my tongue over the head. Crispin shakes and I know he's going to come soon; I hold his hips steady and take him as far as I can, just enough so that if I swallow it's around the glans. "It's not locked," comes a muffled female voice, "but it won't open. There's like a desk in the way or something," Crispin whispers my name between short breaths. I squeeze him in acknowledgement - go ahead - and he bucks against me. I love how he curls over me when he comes and grasps my head with trembling hands, his silence intensifying the power of his orgasm. Hot semen coats my throat, salty and more bitter than usual. It's so thick that I have to pull off a little, but that just means I get a better taste of cum and cock. Crispin's breath ruffles my hair as I suck the last from him, digging my tongue into the slit until I'm sure there's nothing left behind. Crispin pulls me up by the jaw. "Good god," he whispers. "You really like sucking dick, don't you?" Someone is putting their shoulder to the door; the chair scrapes loudly on the floor. "I like sucking yours," I answer and press my lips to his. Now we can both have cum breath. "Maybe it is locked," we hear. "Come with me to find the janitor." Crispin and I look at each other for a moment, and then burst out laughing. "You're batshit crazy," he giggles. I grin. "It was here or the janitor's closet." "Everyone's going to think you beat the shit out of me." "True." Crispin cocks his head at me like he's trying to figure out how he feels about getting blown in the middle of a school day. I'm positive he'll say something snarky like, "Don't make a habit of this," or "have fun explaining this to your wolf pack," but he surprises me by pulling a pack of chewing gum out of his pocket. "Thanks." Crispin raises an eyebrow. "Oh, it's not for you," he says tartly as he unwraps a piece. "You got cum in my mouth." I wait until he pops the gum in his mouth to grab his nipples. My mouth is on his just as he yelps, giving me the perfect opportunity to steal the minty gum from his tongue. Crispin tries to look hurt, but ruins it by laughing in the middle. "Like I said, thanks." I chomp for emphasis. "Aaron, I hate you." "Well, now you owe me." I yank the chair free of the door handle and point a few rows down. "Your belt's over there." Crispin scrambles after it as I walk out of the room.